This article will talk you through everything my puppy has done to me this week, why she does it and what I have tried that doesn’t work. It’ll also talk about some ways to help her stop doing these things so that she can find someone new to nip at!
I would really recommend reading the other parts of this series before reading this one. They are all linked below and very helpful. Once you have read those, come back and read this one.
There is no reason for your dog to be biting you – unless they feel threatened or insecure. If your dog gets nervous around people then they should not be allowed in public. A protective animal is fine as long as it knows who its owner is and how to behave with them.
Dogs cannot control their instinctual behaviours until they are trained otherwise. For example, if a dog was raised with little human contact, it may bite when confronted with someone it does not know.
In the case of our canine friend here, we need to identify the cause of his behavior. He needs to learn that he is more comfortable biting people than sitting next to them, so he must either be rewarded with treats or verbal praise, or punished with a timeout away from the treat.
This could mean taking him out for a walk or even just putting him into his crate for a time-out. Sometimes, just having neutral company is enough to break the chain.
Is his mouth healthy?
The first thing that you should check is if his teeth are growing properly. If they’re not, he may need to be seen by a dentist soon!
This happens when puppies don’t grow their permanent teeth correctly or they lose them due to lack of care.
A lot of dogs get bitten because they are trying to protect themselves by biting instead of using other ways to cope such as rolling over or seeking help from another dog pack member.
If your puppy has always had bad bites then it’s possible that he could develop dental issues in future. This would require expensive veterinary treatment and/or surgery. So, it’s important to identify whether this is the case early so that action can be taken accordingly.
Are his teeth healthy?
The first thing that you should check for when your puppy is biting or nipping at your hands, feet, face, anything really is if their teeth are normal and healthy.
Most puppies have developing baby teeth that come in slightly later than human babies’. This usually happens around six months old when they start to grow.
After this comes the adult tooth stage which can take anywhere from one week to many years depending on the individual dog! During this time period, dogs sometimes will develop “hole-in-tooth” behavior where instead of pulling away, they press down with their mouth leaving a small gap.
This typically only occurs during early stages of dental development as adults try to protect their own missing teeth by replacing them with dentures or false ones. However, it can also be a side effect of certain medications a pet may be on. If this is the case, talk to your doctor about getting rid of the medication so such symptoms do not occur.
Is there something in your coat?
Sometimes when dogs are puppies, they can be playful and want to play all the time. This is totally normal! However, as their bodies develop and grow, some things shift.
For example, at around six months old, most dogs begin to focus more on how strong their muscles are than how soft their fur is. They start grooming themselves more to see if they can get through skin or not (this is called self-grooming).
When you look into why dogs do this, it usually has to do with them feeling stressed or uncomfortable. For instance, if someone breaks up with you, then you might spend days trying to feel better so people will try to grab your attention by doing different things.
If another dog comes along and tries to play with you, then you could both lose interest quickly because you don’t like each other very much. In these cases, your puppy may decide that he needs to wash his hair and ears to prove that he can handle being touched.
He may also need to groom himself to make sure none of his hairs got stuck in the other dog’s fur or mouth. All of these reasons contribute to him deciding to take care of you by biting.
Is there something in your pants?
A few weeks ago, my puppy decided he wanted to take his teeth to my new pair of jeans that I wore with such pride. They are an ankle length fit and have a ruffle detail at the bottom. He has been biting down ever since!
It all started when we went for a short walk one afternoon. As soon as we got back home, he ran up to me and tried to lick my feet which is his normal habit. But then he took it one step further by trying to bite into my pant leg where he could feel my shoes!
I immediately picked him up and carried him outside so he wouldn’t hurt himself or anyone else. After this incident happened, he never really bothered me again. It seems like he has learned his lesson though!
If you notice your dog acting weirdly around you or someone else, try not to get too distracted. Take some time to think about what may be bothering them and maybe do something other than walking to make sure they’re both fine.
Are you feeding him too much?
As mentioned earlier, dogs are hungry for two things: food and love. If your dog is constantly eating to show off or because he thinks everyone should look at his beautiful face, then he may be seeking attention instead of hunger.
If this sounds like yours, it’s important to note that most puppies need more than an occasional treat to learn good manners.
At eight weeks, your puppy needs only one meal per day. After that, he will begin looking for excuses to eat so he can feel successful. This could very easily turn into overfeeding.
Overfed puppies become grossly overweight adults who suffer from health problems related to their weight. For example, obese dogs are three times as likely to get diabetes as thinner dogs.
Dogs who are overweight also have higher blood pressure which puts them at risk for heart disease.
Is it time to spay or neuter?
If you are reading this, then chances are your dog has been annoying you for some time now! He/she is constantly biting, chewing, nipping and digging around in the yard or under furniture.
Dogs will test their limits by trying to see how much they can push people away by being overly friendly and playful, but if these behaviors turn aggressive or threatening, it’s time to intervene.
Intervening early means preventing more serious health issues like skin and mouth problems due to excessive grooming, weight gain caused from eating off of contaminated food or water, and heart disease due to high blood pressure.
Spaying or neutering your dog can prevent all of these potential health complications. Many owners find that once their dogs have undergone surgery, they no longer want to cause harm to themselves or others.
There are many ways to spay or neuter a dog depending on his or her stage of development. For example, there are several different types of spays (or ovariectomy surgeries) for adult female dogs and castrations (or vasectomies) for mature male dogs.
Do you need a muzzle?
Sometimes when dogs bite, they do not have access to their teeth or they are protecting something or someone else. If this is the case, then it is important to try to remove the motivation for the dog to bite.
If your puppy does not want to be removed from an area or person, then trying to distract them may work. You can get some very expensive equipment that requires training to use properly, so make sure you know what settings these products have before investing in one.
The best place to look for distraction tips is online. There are many different websites with helpful information. Some of the ways to distract a dog include playing music, throwing toys, scratching, rubbing, and washing the animal.
Is it time to get a rabies vaccination?
If your dog has been diagnosed with contagious rabies, then it is time to talk about getting a vaccine that will prevent the disease. This can be done either at the veterinary clinic where the rabies diagnosis was made or through a local animal shelter or rescue group.
The cost of this vaccine varies depending on the provider you go to, but most are covered by insurance. Unfortunately, not all dogs have adequate coverage for their health care providers, so it may come out of pocket money for you.
But before you worry too much about if you should vaccinate your dog, there are some things you need to know about rabies vaccinations.