Puppies & The Inevitable Biting

Shasta & Eclair

The following column was written and submitted by Neil Copeland of Seven Lakes Kennels.

The beginning of the new year is upon us and many new puppies will enter their new homes.

Let us dive into a common topic. I get a lot of questions about puppyhood and behaviors that will be pretty much predictable. Biting is a very popular question from puppy owners.

Let us break down the most common “biting”. All puppies come with a prerequisite of biting to lose baby teeth or play or just get your attention.

Well, since we have taken this puppy from its pack they use their teeth for all of the above. In the pack, puppies play and fight each other to learn boundaries.

When they bite us without any consequence, they learn to start manipulating the owners. By 8 months old they are running the house.

Let’s say we start by puppy biting, owner pushes and says “No, stop it” and this continues for a couple weeks. Owner now is trying to redirect with toys but puppy keeps coming back for the owner not the toy.

These methods are typical without understanding how to mitigate the behavior.

Here is a short answer to stopping biting. I get it, after you read it this will be very anticlimactic.

I recommend using a crate to stop play and give it time. Using the crate for not punishment but just simply stopping unwanted behavior is best.

Place some hard toys in the crate to work those teeth.  Puppies will stop biting with maturity.

Neil Copeland

Seven Lakes Kennels