11 September, 2012

If your dog won’t stop biting you or anyone else, it can be much more than an annoying habit. A biting dog can become a huge problem and a liability. If your dog is still a puppy, it is part of a puppy’s nature to nip during playtime. Although this is a natural behavior for puppies, it is important to train your pup not to do so to avoid bigger issues when your dog is full grown.

Below are some ways to stop your puppy from biting.


Communication is a key element in learning for dogs just as it is with humans. When it comes time to train your dog to stop biting, try to communicate to your dog in his or her language. Dogs understand tone of voice rather than the meaning of the words you say. When the dog bites during playtime, try yelping with a high pitched “ouch” and don’t raise your voice.  The yelping is understood as a painful response and will encourage your dog to stop biting.

When you use the above technique, make sure to stop all playing immediately and turn your back on your dog. Tone and body language are important to your up.  Your dog will eventually come around and when he does, reprimand him in a firm tone with a command such as “bad dog” or “don’t bite” and he will quickly get the idea.

Divert Your Dog’s Attention

Another way to stop your dog from biting is to divert his attention from biting you to something that he can chew on, like a toy. By giving your dog a chew toy (such as a kong) each time the he or she turns to inappropriate biting, your dog will get the idea that your hand is not meant for biting. Remember to have the chew toy ready if your dog resorts to biting during play again to reinforce the habit.

Positive Reinforcement

An effective way of training your dog to stop biting is by using positive reinforcement. Positive reinforcement rewards the good behavior with something positive.  If your dog does not bite during play time, make sure to give him praise during play when he does not bite. The praise could be a pat on the head, a belly rub, a treat, or extra attention. Positive reinforcement is a great way to show your dog the type of behavior that you prefer.

Touch Your Dog’s Nose With Your Index Finger

If your dog begins to bite or nip, quickly tell him to sit. Once he is seated, take your index finger, hold it in front of his nose, and then tap him on the nose as you say “bad dog” in a stern voice. Just remember, the tap itself is not the punishment, so it should not be particularly strong. It is just meant as a starting point to stop the bad behavior. Eventually, your dog will come to understand that raising an index finger is an indication to stop a behavior.

Avoid Biting and Nipping Games

A good way to stop a dog from biting is to avoid biting and nipping games in the first place. If you don’t encourage these types of games from the start, your dog will not be prone to biting and nipping in other situations.  Try tossing a ball with your dog so he or she knows the ball is OK to chew.  And, by giving your dog exercise will wear him or her out and he or she will be less prone to bite.

Biting during play can quickly turn into a serious problem, which is why consistency is a key way to stop this from happening. It is important that you stop the biting behavior as soon as it starts, and discipline for the bad behavior while reinforcing the good.   If you follow the above tips, it should stop your dog from biting.  Good luck!




Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *