When Should I Worry About My Puppys Biting
Although biting is normal, it can sometimes be hard to recognize whether your puppy is playfully mouthing or exhibiting temper tantrums, which is a form of aggressive behavior.
In playful mouthing, a puppys face should still be relaxed, the tail wags, and biting isnt forceful.
On the other hand, temper tantrums, according to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, are characterized by a stiff body, lips pulled back to show teeth, and growling.
Biting will be more forceful and painful, since the behavior is typically caused by fear or anger. A German Shepherd puppy may be more prone to displaying this behavior, especially around unruly children.
If these tantrums happen frequently, its time to seek a professional such as a veterinarian, a certified dog trainer, or an animal behaviorist ASAP.
Holding Your Puppy’s Mouth Closed
I have no idea why people think this is an appropriate way to change biting behavior.
I mean no living creature is going to sit back and allow their mouth to be held closed. It’s a natural reaction to struggle to break free from this type of grip.
Never mind the fact that doing this to a puppy will cause life-long issues when it comes to human limbs near their face.
Think about how difficult this will make grooming and visits to the vet.
German Shepherd Jumping And Biting
Whats worse than dealing with puppy biting? When your pup decides its a good idea to bite AND jump! This is something your German Shepherd may do when theyre excited or just seeking attention.
As a pup, Allie thought she should greet everyone by jumping in their face and nipping kind of like a kiss hello, but with teeth.
It didnt matter if you were 6 feet tall, she wanted to be in your face, and if you werent careful, she would get a good nip in before you could react. And as she got bigger, it was harder to control.
Of course, I knew this wasnt aggression she was just excited to see a new face! But trust me, it got old quickly. Again, this is pretty normal behavior for a puppy, but its definitely something you want to stop sooner rather than later.
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Go To Their Level When Youre Ready
This is another great trick that you can use in combination with the other two. Just like the others, repetition is key. Heres what you need to do.
- Anytime that your german shepherd starts jumping up at you, ignore them. And if necessary turn around to face away from them.
- When theyve stopped jumping up at you, face them again and go down to their level.
- Once youre at their level begin playing with them and making a fuss of them. However, make sure you only do it when youre at their level.
- If your dog knows how to sit, then over time you should tell them to sit before you go down to their level. This is also going to reinforce that when they act calmly they get attention.
Let Him Know You Are The Leader
Your German Shepherd has to see you as a Leader. This is a fundamental fact that all the dog owners must know.
You should love your Dog like your Baby but never let him have everything it wants.
If the German Shepherd is doing something wrong, then you have to stop him immediately, and it must listen to you.
Most dogs lack confidence because they do not see a leader in their owners.
If you are a dog owner and your dog did not see you as his leader, then it will not listen properly to your commands.
If your dog knows that you are number 1, then he will feel confident when he is with you, and the Gsd will feel confident when he has to face something challenging.
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Use Special Toys For Play
Toys are useful for playing with your puppy because they put a barrier between your fingers and their teeth.
Even better, have a set of toys that are only used when you want to engage in play with your puppy. Hide these toys in a basket or box after your game of play.
This makes them extra special.
They are under your control and your dog must give them back to you. Special toys are more fun for your pup to bite than you.
When in doubt of what special toy your dog likes, use my list of what toys German Shepherds love for interactive toy ideas that are puppy-safe.
Is Your German Shepherd Puppy Biting Ankles
Nothing is worse than an ankle-biter! I was very lucky not to have this problem with Allie. But many owners arent so lucky and have a problem with their German Shepherd puppy biting their ankles.
Why does your German Shepherd puppy target the ankles? Because your GSD is a working dog trying to do its job herd you around the house like livestock. German Shepherds were originally bred for herding flocks of sheep. And you are your pups favorite sheep!
Your furry pal may also think heel nipping is just a really fun game. If you walk past quickly, its very tempting for your playful pup to reach out and bite.
Using a toy as a distraction and keeping your pup active will help nip ankle nipping in the bud!
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The Puppy Might Be Overstimulated Fearful Or Anxious
Sometimes puppies lose control of their bite because of overstimulation. Overstimulation can happen during playtime, or when your puppy has become cranky due to teasing.
Your GSD puppy may also bite out of fear. Your puppy has but 2 defenses to run away or to bite. If your puppy feels cornered, then biting is the defense that she will most often resort to.
S To Stop Your German Shepherd From Destructive Chewing
Most solutions for stopping chewing in your German Shepherd are directly derived from the causes. In other words, try to understandwhyyour dog is chewing. Heres a super video from celebrity dog trainer Zak George who explains both why dogs chew and more importantly, how to stop destructive chewing:
Most behavior problems in German Shepherds are caused due to a lack of exercise or boredom or a combination of the two.
Lets now dig a little deeper into excessive chewing here are8 steps for stopping your GSD from destructive chewing that really work!
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How To Discourage Biting Behavior
While the German Shepherd puppy biting phase is a rite of passage, there are some ways you can discourage bad biting behavior without harsh discipline.
- Say Ouch! whenever your puppy bites you, even if its not hard. This is one of the most effective ways to teach your German Shepherd bite inhibition or how to be gentle with her teeth.
Think about when your pup was rolling and playing with their brothers and sisters if your GSD was too rough, their sibling would let out a yelp. Thats the language that puppies understand, so use this to your advantage.
This trick worked great with Allie! Just make sure to be consistent until your pup gets the idea and learns to master the power of her jaws. Also, if your furry pal is just mouthy but NOT using her teeth, dont scold her. Puppies will be puppies!
- Redirect the biting to an appropriate toy. For example, when your fuzzy friend latches onto your ankles, give a little puppy-like yelp, and then whip out a toy and encourage your dog to chew on that instead.
Tug-of-war is the perfect game for the puppy biting phase. This is a non-contact game that satisfies your pups urge to use its mouth.
If your puppy is teething, heres a pro tip. Use a frozen KONG toy filled with peanut butter to help with your pups teething woes.
As a bonus, lots of playtime will expend some of your German Shepherd puppys energy!
How To Get A German Shepherd Puppy To Stop Biting
You have to remember that it isnt as simple as taking your puppy to a class once or twice a week and then hoping for the best.
It requires constant effort on your part. You will need to consistently work with your dog to reinforce what you learn at obedience class and continue working with your puppy after completing the training course.
If you dont, your puppy is likely to backslide and stop listening to your commands.
That is why getting a good pet training course that you can continually reference is a fantastic idea.
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How Do You Tell If Your Puppy Hates You
If a dog is afraid of you, they might cower or hide. Remember, a dog that doesnt like you might actually just be kind of scared of you and this fear can manifest itself in physical ways. If the dog is fearful, he may cower or crouch, pull back his ears, tuck his tail, hide, or tremble, Sueda told Insider.
The Most Powerful Deterrent To Nipping Is Ignoring Your Puppy
We are all familiar with the high abrasive screech a puppy makes when we accidentally cause her pain.
Some puppies even carry on a prolonged wailing if you step on a toe or tail. But more compelling is the way a puppy abruptly withdraws, heading away from you or refusing any contact with you for at least several seconds.
Puppies in a litter who are too exuberant suffer the same social withdrawal from siblings and mother.
When a puppy nips at you, the most effective way to grab his attention is to withdraw yours. Many puppies do not listen to commands like stop or no biting.
Physical withdrawal of contact, play, or affection is a means to control something your puppy craves. Some behaviorists refer to this training method as managing a resource.
To work, you need to achieve physical separation immediately upon inappropriate or unwanted nipping from your puppy.
When the offensive act occurs, remove yourself by turning your back, placing your hands out of sight, or walking away.
If your pup is an ankle biter, as herding dogs can be, put a baby gate that you can step over and effectively insert between you and your pup.
Ignoring your puppy for a few seconds can be particularly useful for pets who bite mainly to get your attention in the first place.
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Manage Their Environment So Theyre Successful
Dont let your dog have a full run of the house if theyre not well-trained yet.
One of the most important steps to learning to discipline a German Shepherd for biting and nipping is to prevent the ability to continue practicing the unwanted behavior.
You can do this by controlling the environment and controlling your dogs exposure to these situations that cause him to bite.
- If your puppy begins to bite your children when they run around and play, place your German Shepherd in a contained area so he cant nip them.
- Keeping your puppy on a tether attached to a safe, heavy object so they cant run and bite you when they get too wild
How Do I Get My Dog To Stop Being Aggressive And Biting
Start training early to minimize this kind of possessive behavior. Teaching the Leave it command works well in preventing toy aggression. Food aggression can be avoided by teaching your dog to wait while you put their food down. Teach them to sit or lie down and then remove their food and then put it back.
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Games To Curb German Shepherd Puppy Biting
The best time to curb a German Shepherd puppy from biting is during a play session between you and your puppy.
I suggest initiating play sessions with your puppy as often as possible until you have taught your puppy to have a soft mouth.
I suggest using a clicker for these games. If you don’t already know how, check out my article on before getting started.
Why Does My German Shepherd Bite Other Dogs
If your German Shepherd has been biting other dogs, you might be wondering why and what you can do about it.
This post will show you a number of reasons why your German Shepherd might bite other dogs and a number of things that you can do to stop it.
So, why does my German Shepherd bite other dogs? Possible causes can be that it didnt get enough socialization as a puppy, it is dominant, its protecting its owner or territory or it is due to its prey drive if it only does it to small dogs.
There are a number of things that you can consider when trying to figure out why your German Shepherd does it and there are a number of things that you can do to stop it.
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Bite Inhibition Using Your Puppys Favorite Treats
Another variation of this technique is to use your pups favorite treats. Heres how you do this.
What you are teaching your puppy here is that off means not to touch. This command will stop your pup in his tracks the next time he is about to bite an object or person.
How To Tell When Jumping And Biting Is A Sign Of Aggression
While in most cases your pup jumping up isnt going to be a sign of aggression, its important to spot the signs early.
Afterall, german shepherds are big dogs, and if they do ever attack someone theyre going to do a lot of damage as well as risk being put to sleep.
Positive Body Language
If your German shepherd is happy to see someone before jumping up at them, therell normally be accompanying body language. This can include:
- Excited Crying.
- Being Full Of Energy.
- Dropping Down On Their Front Legs
Weve all seen the tell-tale signs of a happy dog and those are what you should be looking for if your dog is jumping up and biting in a non-threatening way.
Negative Body Language
However, if your dog is showing negative body language before jumping up and biting then you have a problem. Negative body language includes.
Growling: This may be when someone touches them, as someone approaches them, or if your dog starts walking towards them.
Snarling: Similar to growling, if your dog starts to bare their front teeth at someone, before jumping up and biting then its definitely aggressive in nature.
Barking: While dogs can bark when theyre excited, they can also bark when theyre aggressive. Barking of this kind will normally accompany other signs of aggressive behavior.
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How To Stop A German Shepherd Puppy From Biting & Nipping
Just like other dog owners, there was a time when my German shepherd puppys biting behavior really frustrated me. It is true that the biting phase is just part of having a puppy, but that doesnt mean we can let him get away with it. Nobody likes when those sharp tiny teeth puncture their arms and hands.
Thus, our job as dog parents is to teach our puppy that hard biting is not okay. So how to stop a German shepherd puppy from biting? One of the simplest and most effective ways to stop puppy biting is to teach him bite inhibition.
Teach Your German Shepherd To Accept Your Hands Near Their Mouth
This leads onto having to teach your German Shepherd puppy that its ok to have your hands near their mouth without biting at them. Its something they need to accept, and will also help with the points later in this guide.
Puppies will often eat things they should not do, so you will need to hook stuff out of their mouth. You will also need to check the health of their teeth and gums.
You wont be able to do this if your German Shepherd wont stop biting your hands anytime you attempt a check or intervention.
One of the best ways you can train a German Shepherd puppy to not bite your fingers in their mouth is to use a treat or snack. Let them see it, and then use your fingers to pop it into their mouth and out again.
Over time, they should get comfortable letting you put fingers in their mouth without biting back.
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What To Do With A 6 Month Old German Shepherd
While your puppy still lacks maturity and focus, you can increase training to help teach your dog obedience skills. Increase daily obedience and practice to help them learn better training basics and learn how to train a 6 month old German Shepherd the right way. Your beautiful German Shepherd puppy will grow very quickly!
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Place Them In A Short Time Out For Continued Biting
Sometimes, a short time-out is required for hard nipping and biting.
There will be times when your puppy is acting out so badly you might need to place them in a short time out.
Time outs are not meant to be punishment, but a moment of calm. Dont roughly grab your puppy and shove them in a crate!
Instead, do this
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