Why Your German Shepherd Bites Your Feet
Each of the different reasons why your German Shepherd bites your feet and ankles will likely come with a number of clues in the way that it does it.
Below, I will mention a number of reasons why your German Shepherd might bite your feet or ankles and the signs to look for.
It wants attention
The reason why it bites your feet could be that it wants your attention.
This would be more likely to be the reason if it starts biting your feet when you have not been giving it attention for a while. It would also be more likely if it does it when you had just left it alone for a long time perhaps because you were at work.
If that is why your German Shepherd bites your feet then it would help to give it more attention in the form of exercise, training and playing games such as tug of war in addition to training it not to bite your feet.
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It is teething
If your German Shepherd is a puppy then the reason why it bites your feet is likely to be that it is teething. When they are teething their gums will be painful and biting and chewing on things helps to soothe their gums. This is why they tend to bite and chew on things a lot as puppies.
If your German Shepherd is still a puppy then it is very important to take the time now to train it not to bite your feet and to behave the way that you want it to. You can do this using the tips mentioned below.
It wasnt trained not to as a puppy
It is exploring
Dont Give Toys That Resemble Items Your Gsd Shouldnt Chew
Some pet owners think that a small shoe chew toy is adorable because dogs are notorious for chewing on shoes. Unfortunately, its far from productive towards your cause!
Rather than only chewing on the toy shoe, they may start to chew all shoes in their sight. Who can blame them when youve opened up a world of confusion for them? Also, avoid things like fake newspapers, old clothes, and other items that you wouldnt want them to chew on. It might seem simple, but its one of the easiest mistakes to make!
What Should I Do If My German Shepherd Runs Away
Many German Shepherd has the tendency to escape and chasing cars. The best solution to this problem is keeping your Shepherd Outside safely fenced. Dont Let Your Dog go out. If you take your Dog out, then make sure you take him on a leash. This will prevent any accident which can occur with your dog while he is chasing cars or running on the road.
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How To Stop A Dog From Chewing When Home Alone
Chewing is a natural behavior for dogs. They use their mouths to explore the environment in the same way that humans use their hands as investigative tools. Irksome and sometimes expensive destructive chewing usually takes place when the owner is not with the dog. Therefore, correction when the dog starts or is in the act is impossible. The chewing can then become a compulsive behavior when the dog is lonely, bored, stressed or anxious.
Let Your German Shepherd Know You Are In Charge
Older German Shepherds that bite will often do it to try to exert dominance over their owner. They can also bite due to jealousy, or when you tell them to do something like get off your chair or bed.
Handy Hint: Ive written an in-depth explanation to why dogs like to steal your seat when you get up.
You need to train your German Shepherd to realize you are the pack leader and the dominant one. Alphas like us owners, should not be bitten by pack members lower down the chain.
Being assertive will help, but often simply rewarding good behavior is enough to get a dog to bend to your will.
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How To Stop Your German Shepherd Dog From Jumping Up
So, how do you stop it? The simple answer is body language. This is how dogs communicate at is the easiest way to explain to him that this behavior is not acceptable.
Whenever you see your dog getting ready to jump up at you, immediately give a firm no or ah-ah and turn your back. To a dog, your back is boring. There are no physical cues for him to read. His first response will probably be to circle you so he is facing you. Now he is ready to try again!
Be persistent. Even if he manages to get his feet of the floor, still give him your back. He will immediately get down because by turning your back you are rejecting his request for attention. Eventually he will give up. This doesnt mean he has learnt not to jump, it just means he has learnt that it isnt wanted right now.
To continue with the training, you need tell everyone your dog comes into contact with the do the same thing. That will begin to develop and association for your dog between jumping up and not getting the fuss he wants.
In addition, you need to give him an alternative. When he comes rushing towards you, hold out the palm of your hand like a stop gesture and ask him to sit. As soon as he does you can lavish him with pets and praise. The second he jumps up you must end the interaction by turning your back on him.
Turn Destructive Chewing Into Positive Chewing
Remember, its okay if your dog slips up occasionally and chews something they shouldnt. Kindly prompt your dog to release the off-limits item and exchange it with a chew toy. When your dog accepts the chew toy, praise them. Dont yell at your dog for destructive chewing your furry friend wont associate the punishment with the unwanted behavioreven if it is only a short time after the fact, according to the ASPCA.
When you get right down to it, the moral is less about learning how to stop a dog from chewing and more about teaching your best friend healthy chewing habits. You can turn a negative situation into a positive one with patience, dedication, and lots of chew toys!
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They’re A Herding Breed
On top of that, this is a herding breed, so the pups like to chase and gather moving things and they often accomplish this by using their mouths .
In the old days, the herding style of German Shepherds encompassed for a good part what was known as boundary patrol, or flock containment. These dogs had to ensure the sheep were properly contained and the rebellious sheep were controlled by gripping the top of the neck, the ribs or just above the hocks.
Breeder and herding expert Ellen Nickelsberg explains how puppy herding trials are conducted and how puppies are selected based on gripping style which may range between damaging and less damaging bites, full-mouth bites and puppies who bite and hold on. These preliminary tests are done when the pups are very young.
Get Everyone On Board
Friends, family, and anyone else who comes in contact with your German Shepherd all need to be on board when training your dog to stop chewing. Different commands and gestures can be confusing and impossible for your dog to hold onto. Instead, make sure that you all use the same motions and phrases.
A simple way to do this is to lay the foundations as soon as the destructive chewing begins. Write down on a whiteboard all the commands that you plan to use and leave in a handy place as a reminder for everyone.
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Redirect Your Gsds Destructive Chewing To Chew Toys
As indicated earlier, chewing is a natural need in dogs and should not be eliminated. Instead, destructive chewing should be prevented or corrected through training.
Experts in canine care suggest that redirecting your dogs tendency to chew valuables to chewing toys offers healthy alternative stimulation and enhances your dogs welfare. Also, these toys should be rotated often to avoid habituation, which would lead them back to chewing what they are not supposed to.
According to Preventive Vet, you should evaluate your GSDs chewing behavior to understand your dogs type of chewer. This helps to decide the best chew toys for your dog.
Dogs can belong to one of the three types of chewers, and each has some recommended types of toys, as shown below. The recommended toys are from Amazon and are ones that I personally like.
|Type of chewer|
|Nylabone Big Chew Chew Toy|
Remember that your German Shepherd should not be chewing toys the entire day, as this can become another behavior problem. Instead, give chew toys when your dog shows signs of putting his mouth on what he should not.
Your German Shepherds other time of the day should be occupied with exercise, play, sleep, as well as time to connect with you.
Other chewing considerations:
Edible chews are a good alternative to mix things up a bit for your GSD. However, these dont last very long, but I like to give them to my German Shepherd to reward good behavior.
Why Should You Stop Your German Shepherd Dog From Jumping Up
Puppies jumping up may seem cute, but 6 months on you have an out of control 50-pound dog throwing himself at people and putting people at risk. As a puppy, jumping up should be stopped to prevent serious issues in later life.
German Shepherds are large dogs and the last thing you want is your adult dog knocking over poor Mrs. Jones from next door. He wont understand that it is wrong because he was allowed to do it as a puppy. An adult German Shepherd is capable of jumping between 4 and 6 feet high. They are a working breed and have a lot of power in the legs. For more information on how high a German Shepherd can jump please see this article.
It is also necessary to prevent jumping as German Shepherds are prone to joint problems like hip dysplasia. Jumping can make this worse and puts a lot of pressure on the joints.
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How Else Can My Dogs Chewing Activity Be Reduced
In addition to providing ample opportunity to explore and play, you should insure that your pet has a regular daily routine that provides social activity times, where the pet gets play, training and exercise and an opportunity to eliminate. For many dogs a daily walk can be very calming and provide exercise and activity. In between these social times, especially if the owner cannot supervise, the pet will need to be placed in its bed, crate or room for a nap, or placed in a room or confinement area where it has appealing feeding, play or chew toys.
Many of the breeds obtained as family pets have been bred for a variety of working tasks. This means that they are mentally and physically capable and “programmed for” activities such as retrieving, herding, hunting or sledding. Therefore the requirements of these breeds should be met by providing either work or an equivalent amount and type of play. Games such as tug-of-war, retrieving, catching a ball or Frisbee, jogging, pulling a cart, flyball, or even long walks are excellent alternatives for expending energy, while socially interacting with family members. However, the type and amount of play may vary with the breed, age and health of the pet. Obedience training, agility classes and training your dog to a few simple commands and tricks are not only pleasant interactive activities for you and your dog, but they also provide some stimulation and work in the dogs daily schedule.
They May Be Taken From The Litter Too Early
Young puppies learn to naturally inhibit their biting through socialization with their mother and their siblings.
A puppy does not quite understand yet the force of her own bite unless she bites too hard and the recipient reacts by yelping out of pain.
This interaction among puppies and their mother is crucial, and it happens during the puppys early socialization period between three to six weeks old.
Taking a puppy away from her mother prematurely will therefore deprive her the chance to learn important socialization skills.
As a rule of thumb, the American Kennel Club recommends that you take home a puppy that is no less than eight weeks old. By this time, the puppy should have had ample time to interact with her playmates and learn bite inhibition.
We concur that you should never take home a puppy that is less than 8 weeks old. In fact, more than half of the states in the U.S. have laws or regulations that mandate how old a puppy must be before it is allowed to be sold or adopted.
This does not mean, however, that your puppy will completely stop nipping. As the new parent, it is your job to continue training the dog so that any subsequent bites should be gentler.
For more on selecting the right German Shepherd puppy from a litter, including additional information on the proper age, what to look for in a puppy, and what to expect from ethical breeders, be sure to check out the 2 articles linked below:
Tips On How Your Gsd Puppy Can Deal With Teething
Here are some helpful tips guaranteed to help ease your German Shepherd puppys pain:
- Herbal Plants Herbal plants can alleviate the pain your puppy feels. Try making a tea out from these natural calming herbs such as chamomile. Allow the tea to cool completely and offer it to your puppy. If he doesnt like the taste, you can add some broth.
- Edible Chew Treats Provide safe chew treats so he wont resort to chewing your furniture. Consider providing edible chew treats because of its dual function- toy and food. There are many chew treats available in the market. Choose the safest and high-quality ones.
- Ice Cubes If you dont want to buy commercial chew treats, you can simply make use of ice cubes at home. Rub an ice cube gently on your puppys gum. If he doesnt like it, you can try freezing the broth from beef, chicken, and vegetables as an alternative. You can also try freezing aloe vera juice or another fruit juice into ice cubes and rub them on your puppys gums. The cold temperature will soothe your puppys gums.
- Puppy Teething Gel There are different brands of teething gels to choose from. Choose the teething gel that has natural ingredients such as chamomile, peppermint and clove oils. Read and follow the instructions carefully.
Why Does My German Shepherd Bite My Feet And Ankles
If your German Shepherd has been biting your feet and ankles, youre probably wondering why and what you can do about it.
This post will show you 6 reasons why your German Shepherd might be doing it and what you can do about it.
So, why does my German Shepherd bite my feet? Possible causes can include wanting attention, teething, rewarding the behavior, a lack of training, excitement or that it is exploring using its mouth.
There are a number of things that you can consider when trying to understand what might be causing your German Shepherd to be doing it. There are also a number of things that you can do to stop it depending on the cause.
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Enroll In A Puppy Class
An AKC S.T.A.R. Puppy class or another well-run local class will provide your puppy with the chance to socialize with other dogs.
Teaching your little manic play biter to be polite with their mouth may seem like a huge challenge at first. Patience and consistency are the keys. Some puppies may back off during one play session, and come at you teeth first in the next.
Play biting does not mean your puppy is vicious, says Dr. Jerry Klein, AKCs chief veterinary officer. However, if you havent been able to moderate the behavior by the time theyre six months old, its a good idea to consult an experienced dog trainer or animal behavior specialist.
AKC is a participant in affiliate advertising programs designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to akc.org. If you purchase a product through this article, we may receive a portion of the sale.
Let Out A High Pitched Yelp
When your German Shepherd bites with those razor teeth, immediately let out a high-pitched cry such as Ouch! or Ahh Ahh! to let your dog know its not acceptable. At the same time pull your hand away slowly and move away from your dog. Dont jerk your hand away as your pup will see this as a game, like a game of tug-of-war.
The idea here is that you are mimicking a littermate, as a pup would yelp if they were bitten too hard during play and then all the fun would stop. Its exactly the same thing, only YOU stop the play.
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