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Bellasmummy
Dogsey Junior
Bellasmummy is offline  
Location: Essex, UK
Joined: Feb 2010
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14-02-2010, 11:08 PM

Biting puppy - occasionally

Hello all

I was hoping for some advice please. My 14 week old puppy is doing really well generally - as far as we can tell, having never owned one before!

There are a couple of things that worry me, like she seems to have gone off her kibble (IAMS) but more importantly (hence this post) she seems to have biting fits occasionally. It tends to be be when we are having a play and I am rubbing her tummy while she is laying on her back. She then suddenly starts biting me and doesn't stop when I say 'no' or 'stop'. Other times, she will just start barking at me, out of the blue and then try to bite me. It's really odd and I can't work out why she does it.

Any advice on how to make her behave better or deal with this in a better way - I tend to stand still when she starts and ignore her until she stops - would be much appreciated.

I should add we are going to puppy classes in the next couple of weeks which I am sure will be helpful to us and her.
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Meg
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15-02-2010, 12:09 AM
Originally Posted by Bellasmummy View Post
Hello all

I was hoping for some advice please. My 14 week old puppy is doing really well generally - as far as we can tell, having never owned one before!

There are a couple of things that worry me, like she seems to have gone off her kibble (IAMS) but more importantly (hence this post) she seems to have biting fits occasionally. It tends to be be when we are having a play and I am rubbing her tummy while she is laying on her back. She then suddenly starts biting me and doesn't stop when I say 'no' or 'stop'. Other times, she will just start barking at me, out of the blue and then try to bite me. It's really odd and I can't work out why she does it.
Any advice on how to make her behave better or deal with this in a better way - I tend to stand still when she starts and ignore her until she stops - would be much appreciated.

I should add we are going to puppy classes in the next couple of weeks which I am sure will be helpful to us and her.
Hi Rou , the behaviour you describe is normal behaviour in puppies, your puppy is 'play biting' attempting to play with your just as it would with its siblings. Watch any litter of puppies playing, they bite each other in turn/yelp/run away, this is 'play biting' and they soon learn how much they can bite each other without inflicting pain and bringing play to an end.

When we take on a puppy we need to continue the learning process which was interrupted when the puppy left its litter mates . We need to curb and channel the play biting in the right direction ideally before the age of 4 month. The puppy should be encouraged to bite ever more gently until no pressure is exerted at all , this is called 'bite inhibition'.

Teaching bite inhibition ensures that as the puppy grows up and develops powerful jaws, should he bite for any reason (say he is in in pain/at the vets being treated /gets accidentally hurt) he will have learnt never to sink his teeth into human skin.

Bite inhibition, learning to developer a 'soft mouth' is one of the most important lessons you can teach your puppy, however teaching it takes time and patience and success won't be achieved in just a few days . Also everyone in the household needs to adopt the same approach.


Link to teaching bite inhibition ..click here
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Meg
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15-02-2010, 12:19 AM
Continued..
With regard to the food, dogs are prompted to eat by the smell of food. Kibble has very little smell and is probably not that attractive to dogs.
You can try moistening the kibble with a little hot water which makes it smell stonger.

If feeding kibble I prefer to feed one of the good quality foods made by Arden Grange/Burns/Fish 4dogs and there are many others which are produced in this country and contain the minimum of additives/preservatives . Also adding a little something strong smelling to kibble like sardines in oil/a tiny bit of grated cheese/a bit of meat/a wet food like nature diet can make it more attractive.
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Bellasmummy
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Location: Essex, UK
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15-02-2010, 10:01 PM
Hello Meg

Thank you ever so much for the very useful advice. It's good to know it's not just my puppy that goes through these things.

I appreciate the link and off to read some more....
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