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Old 07-11-2002, 03:23 PM
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Help my Puppy to Stop Nipping

Help my 3 month old puppy thinks that my 12 y.o.s. and my 2y.o.d. are chew toys. She does not chew on my 13 y.o.d. and my 7 y.o.d. How can I stop her from doing this??? Any help would be greatly appreciated.

They are absolutely just "Love Bites" I'm sure. But she insists on nipping them!!!
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Old 07-11-2002, 04:29 PM
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Training Tips for Breaking Your Puppy from Nipping

Although your dog may nip at you in a rough, assertive fashion, problem nipping is primarily an unacceptable form of greeting and play. This problem must not be confused with aggressive biting. If your puppy growls or bites, you may have a more serious problem and should seek the assistance of a professional dog trainer.

For the next several months, stop playing rough games with your puppy which could encourage him to nip.

Greet your puppy calmly.

Play fetch or games that do not involve nipping.

Avoid tug-of-war type games.

Play with him frequently when his wearing a leash.

When he nips, sharply say “OFF!” If your puppy stops nipping, quickly give him one of his favorite play toys and praise when he focuses on it. If when you say OFF! he continues to nip, then gently tug on his leash to correct him. After his correction, put your hand (or whatever body part he nipped) back towards his mouth. If he nips again, repeat the correction. If he does not nip, praise him.

From Nevada Aminal COntrol

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

From Petsmart

If your dog is nipping or mouthing people when petting her, try giving her a tasty bit of food or a chew object like a rawhide to occupy her while you pet her, or teach her to sit quietly for a tidbit when you try to pet or greet her.

Never encourage your puppy to grab you or your clothes. If she does grab or nip you or your clothes, cross your arms and look away from her or walk away from her so she learns that nipping means she won't receive any attention from you. Don't laugh, look at her or give in to her play as this rewards the behavior. If your puppy is worse when children are playing, try to keep her separated from the play or put her on a leash so her behavior can be controlled. Never let children tease or excite puppies into nipping and mouthy play.

If these strategies don't work, try squealing in pain ("Ouch!") whenever the puppy tries to mouth or nip you. For some puppies this will startle them and inhibit their biting. There are a few puppies for which the squealing doesn't inhibit them, it actually increases the biting. If this seems to make the nipping and mouthing worse, stop doing it. You may need to try other ways to punish the biting behavior. Try a time out, as described in Training Procedures. To make any punishment work whether squealing or time outs, you must use them as soon as the puppy starts nipping, and you must use them consistently. Pet her quietly or give her a chew toy when she does stop the nipping to reward the calm, relaxed behavior. Don't punish her by hitting, slapping, kicking or other physical means. This sort of punishment can cause fear or aggression or even make the problem worse.


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Old 07-11-2002, 04:31 PM
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from Dummies.com

Controlling Nipping and Mouthing

Mouthing and nipping are two different issues. Mouthing is a lesser infraction; it's more of a communication skill to get you to do a particular thing. Less pressure, less annoying, but still not particularly charming. Nipping is a puppy thing; it's interactive and playful. If you have an older puppy who still nips, you may be dealing with aggression. Nipping puppies are bossy and manipulative and need a firmer regimen.

Mouthing is an attention-getting behavior. If your dog uses it to communicate a need to go out, respond. If, on the other hand, your dog mouths you for a pat, ignore it. Pretend she isn't there. If she becomes too annoying, get Binaca Mouth Spray and spritz her discreetly in front of her nose, hiding the Binaca in your hand and avoiding all eye contact, comments, or pushing.

Nipping is different from mouthing (nipping with sharp little needle teeth can hurt!), and it's another one of those puppy things that you need to refocus. Consider this: When your puppy still hung out with her littermates, she nipped during play and to determine her rank. She also soft-mouthed her mother affectionately. When you bring your puppy home, this behavior continues.

What your puppy wants to know is who's a puppy and who's not. The answer determines the type of mouthing or nipping: soft or playful. Usually, everyone gets categorized as a puppy. Why? Well, for starters, most people pull their hands away when nipped. To a human, drawing back is self-defense; to a pup, however, it's an invitation to play. Even if you were to correct your young puppy, she wouldn't understand (it's like correcting a one-year-old baby for pulling your hair). So what should you do? Your approach depends on your puppy's age.

Pups younger than 16 weeks
Young puppies mouth a lot. They mouth when playing; they also mouth to communicate their needs. If your puppy starts mouthing, ask yourself these questions: Is she hungry or thirsty? Does she need to eliminate? Is she sleepy? Does she need to play? Remember, puppies nip when they feel needy (just like a baby cries). If your puppy won't let up, ask yourself if she wants something, like an outing, exercise, or a drink.

The following things can help you control mouthing and nipping:


If your puppy doesn't need anything and she still won't quit, crate or isolate her with a favorite bone. Do not scold your puppy as you isolate her.


Whenever your puppy licks you, say "Kisses" and praise her warmly. Encourage licking by slathering your hands with a frozen stick of butter. Yummm.


Withhold your attention when your puppy nips softly. Keep your hand still; withdrawing your hand is an invitation to play and nip harder.


If your puppy starts biting down hard, turn quickly, say "Ep, Ep!" and glare into her eyes for two seconds; then go back to your normal routine. If she persists, try spritzing yourself with Bitter Apple or affix a leash onto your puppy so that you can tug the lead sharply to the side. If necessary, place her in a quiet area to cool off.

Pups over 16 weeks
If you have a Peter Pan pup, one who isn't growing up, you need to start curbing it now. Although nipping will continue (for a few weeks yet), you need to make clear that it's unacceptable. Following are a few tips to help you:


Stop all challenge games (wrestling, tug-of-war, chasing your dog around, and teasing). When you engage in these types of activities, you're sending the wrong message. These games teach dogs to clamp down hard on any object — a leash, the laundry, your shirt, or even your skin — and challenge.


Discourage all nipping, whether it's a bite on your arm or a nibble on your finger. Teeth do not belong on human skin, period.


Purchase a few weapons to use in defense, such as Binaca Mouth Spray, Bitter Apple spray, or a long-distance squirt gun.


Never stare at your pup while you spritz or spray her; doing so turns an unpleasant result into a confrontational interaction.


Leave a leash on your puppy so you have something to direct her with and can avoid physical confrontation.


If your puppy begins to mouth, turn to her, use a lead or collar to snap her head from your body, or spritz the region she's nipping with a spray. Do not glare at her or she'll perceive your actions as confrontational play.


If she continues to nip, ask yourself if you look convincing, if you're snapping or pulling (pulling encourages play), or if your dog is taking you seriously. You may need more training before you earn her respect.

Pups with kids
Kids act a lot like puppies. They're always on the floor and into everything. If you have children, teach your puppy not to mouth them from the start. Here's how.


Leave your puppy on a 4-foot-long nylon leash whenever she's with your children. If she starts playing too rough, pick up the leash, snap back, and say "Ep, Ep."


If you're still having trouble, buy a long-distance squirt gun or plant mister and fill it with water and vinegar, and spray your dog discreetly when she starts getting riled up.


If all else fails, give the puppy a time-out attached to you, stationed, or crated. Help the kids see that their restlessness leads to your withdrawing the puppy.

When things get out of hand, don't yell at the kids. Yelling sounds like barking to your dog and ups the fun ante. Calmly station, crate, or isolate your puppy until she mellows.



When grabbing and chasing are involved
Puppies, being puppies, are bound to chase and grab at things. If the thing is a ball or squeak toy, there's no problem. But if it's the children or your clothing, well, that's a problem. Your next goal is to teach the puppy what's acceptable to grab and pull at and what's off limits.

The bathrobe assault
If your puppy's a clothing grabber, dilute some Bitter Apple spray in a plant mister and carry it with you when you suspect the assault. Without looking at or responding to your pup, spray your dog discretely and continue walking.

If this problem persists, get help now. It can develop into post-puberty aggression. No joke.



The child chaser
Kids running around the yard or house are a big temptation. If you were a puppy, you'd be jumping and nipping, too. Because you can't teach kids to stop being kids, you need to help your puppy control her impulses.

1. Put your pup on the leash and ask the kids to race around in front of you.

2. Anytime your puppy looks tempted to lunge, snap back and say "Shhh."

3. Repeat as often as necessary to gain control.

Once you've tamed your dog inside, repeat the routine outside, first with a leash and then with a longer chain.
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Old 07-12-2002, 04:06 AM
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Thank you so much for this information this really makes sense because my 2 y.o. runs around alot and rolls on the floor with the puppy. And my 12 y.o. son likes to play "chase" with her. I will put a stop to this now to get her to stop this. I am so glad I asked this now as she is under 16 weeks old.

I thought there was some connection to something that she only chose those two kids to "nip" at. But did not know where to start.

Again, thank you so much for the information!! I will keep you posted as to how it is going!!!
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Old 07-13-2002, 10:10 AM
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Hi....

Sorry you have a nipper...but...if after all this has not worked...please get in touch with a good trainer...one that uses both POSITIVE and NEGATIVE reinforcement, and don't wait too long....

You neglected to tell us the breed of dog....
Playful nips can become a dominance issue....then they turn into bites......

Jeannie
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Old 07-13-2002, 10:25 AM
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The best way to train a young pup that is doing something wrong is to treat him the way his mother would. Growl at him! It's impoortant that he learns that you are the Alpha dog. A good trainer or your local vet can help you put a stop to misbehavior in young pups!
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Old 07-13-2002, 01:41 PM
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The first tips seem to be working already, my son thought that she was a play toy. He is tired of her nipping him so he was a little disappointed that he can not play chase with her. But, I believe that he is happy to try it to get her to stop. The "crossing of the arms in front of us" seems to really help alot.

Oh, she is a mix mostly Border Collie, her mom is pure bred Border Collie and her dad is Border Collie mixed with something else. The people we got her from did not know what she is mixed with. She looks exactly like a Border Collie, except for her tail.
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Old 07-14-2002, 10:53 AM
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It may help to notice how the two that are getting nipped play with the puppy. If they are playing games that instigate biting like tapping it on the mouth or nose or other agggresive type play maybe this is why it only happens to them. Some children will grab the puppys tail or feet which may casue the puppy to nip. I would refrain from using the hand to correct the puppy. The hand that they trust to pet them, feed them etc. should not be the same that causes them harm or fear. Make sure you talk to your pet in a loving tone and keep the loud more strick tone to when a bad behavior occurs. Good luck!
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Old 07-14-2002, 02:03 PM
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Yes I believe that it is/was what they were doing. My son liked to play chase with her outside, I believe she thought of him as another puppy!!! And, of course my daughter, would roll around on the floor and play with her and of course the puppy thought of her as a puppy. I believe we are getting her nipping under control. With all of the different ideas I was given, I have kinda meshed them all together and she is starting to adjust to not nipping. Crossing the arms seems to work really well. But try teaching a 2 yo to cross their arms, she will only cross them when she sees the others crossing their arms!!!

Than you all for such great suggestions. I believe my wonderful puppy will be a wonderful mature dog!!!!
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Old 07-17-2002, 08:45 AM
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simply pinch his nose every time he does this; he will have to stop in order to breathe - it may take persistence but he will eventually get the drift:
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