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puppy biting

May 14th, 2006, 01:23 PM
We have had our 3 month old Vizsla puppy for 3 weeks and just adore her ... but ... she bites alot and with those sharp puppy teeth it can really hurt! We started by saying (sometimes yelling) ouch! to startle her. At first it worked, she stopped biting and we distracted her with a toy, but now I think the ouch! or no! just encourages her to keep biting us and she ignores the toy. So then we then tried grabbing her by the scruff of her neck when she started biting and saying no! but she still continues to try and bite. I really do not want to use "negative" training methods, but I don't know what else I can do. Is it just too early for her to have learned "bite inhibition"?

Proud Vizsla Mom

May 15th, 2006, 10:16 AM
ahhh the 3 mth old demon teeth.... a few things to try:

redirecting your pup to a toy. If she starts to bite you, redirect her to an appropriate toy and REWARD her for chewing on it. If she voluntarily chooses the toy - REWARD!!! if she's ignoring the toy, get a better toy. there are soooo many on the market for pups.

When saying OUCH! - don't just say it, and then continue playing... say OUCH and leave the pup for a couple of minutes. leave the room (if you can) or put the pup in a "time out". I crate trained my dog, so when he got overly mouthy I calmly picked him up - and gently placed him in his crate for 2-3 minutes. DO NOT SAY A WORD. just pick up/put down calmly & gently. it's just for the pup to settle down, it's not punishment. when you let the pup out of the crate or gated-area, be happy, and forgive & forget.

3 mth old pups are really still learning, so be sure to have some good toys on hand. Puppy KONGS are great! fill them w/ treats and freeze them to keep the pup interested. (you don't have to use treats w/ the kong, you can use the pup's regular puppy food)

I found the BEST thing for bite-ihibition was enrolling in puppy playschool. I enrolled my dog after he'd had his first shots, around 12-14wks old. He got to play w/ about 5-6 other pups of the same age, and learned bite inhibition from this activity. They rolled, wrestled, and nipped each other - sometimes too hard, but they learned from each other. And we (the owners) learned some great hands-on puppy techniques for home, some of which I described above. I highly recommend puppy school if it's available in your area.

congrats on the new pup!