Puppy biting is a widespread concern with owners. Lucky for you, they now make toys specifically for your teething puppy. You can find them at any pet store. They will be a tough toy that doesn’t have a lot of pieces they can chew off and is big enough for your puppy. A great way to utilize these toys is always to have one near you.
When your puppy starts biting you, your shoes, your couch, or whatever it may be - replace it with their teething toy and provide positive reinforcement and celebration. Make them excited and happy about this new toy. The puppy teething stage can last a while, so we like to have a couple of teething toys on hand. You will want to replace their toys when they start to get worn down. Keep them fresh for the best puppy handling.
If you need relief right now and don’t have a good toy for teething, you can take a washcloth, wet it, put it in the freezer, and once it’s cold, give it to your puppy to bite on. This coldness will help with teething soreness and is a much more cost-effective option!
No Bite Command
One of the most effective tips is simply training your puppy to listen to a “No Bite” command. You can do this puppy behavior training through easy repetition and rewards. It also works very well in tandem with teething toys. Whenever your puppy is biting, try voicing “ow” or “ouch” and say the command “No Bite” and replace whatever they are biting with their teething toy! This works best with your puppy if they seem to be biting because they are simply teething or calm playing.
If you notice your puppy is also biting in high-energy situations, you will want to pair this command and teething toy replacement with also helping them to relax. Slow down the hyper playing, soothe them, and have them relax with their new teething toy. Puppies will follow suit and are very smart.
If you calm down, they will as well. Teaching your dog commands will come naturally to them if you stay consistent and repetitive. Use this command every time you want them to stop biting, replace the activity with positive action, and you will see your puppy start to catch on!
Some dog breeds are naturally very hyper. This can be difficult when also trying to train them not to bite. As puppies, they are teething, but also they are playing and having fun and haven’t learned that biting is not part of playing. If you are dealing with a hyper dog breed, teaching your puppy not to bite could take longer, simply because they have more energy and excitement and can’t help it!
You will want to continue with all the above tips, but you will also want to be more attentive. If they bite a lot when playing with other dogs and get very excited, we suggest giving each dog a break. Puppies get tired very quickly and may start biting and forgetting their social cues. Once you separate them and give your hyper dog their teething toy, you will notice they begin to relax (they will probably fall asleep and take a great nap!).
If your puppy bites when you play with them, stop playing immediately. You don’t want to let them continue biting. Again, follow the above tips and reinforce this behavior, even when they are being very hyper. Calming a hyper dog takes patience! Teaching them to calm down will help teach them not to bite.
All puppies bite and have a teething stage. Raising a puppy takes a lot of work, but it is always worth it to put in the work with your puppy training early! The key takeaway tips we have are redirecting their biting, staying calm, being patient, and giving your puppy time to learn and grow.