Why Puppies Bite?
There are a number of reasons puppies nip, bite, and chew. This behavior starts before puppies even leave the litter—as soon as they begin to develop teeth, they begin receiving feedback on their bite strength from their mothers and litter mates. With their litters, puppies learn that biting other puppies hard will result in them not playing with him or biting the mother dog too hard may result in him not being fed or a growl or bite from her.
Puppies also bite and nip to learn the social nuances of dog culture. Dogs play by chase, race, tackle, play face-bite games, pounce, tug, and wrestle. This play actually serves a more serious purpose, teaching the lessons that need to be learned so that a dog can survive in canine society. Dogs don’t communicate with verbal language; they communicate physically, through body language and contact. Because dogs either growl or indulge in biting.
When well-socialized dogs find themselves in conflict, the interaction often looks very scary—teeth flashing, growling. More often than not, these interactions are brief, however, and both dogs walk away without injury.
While bite-inhibition training begins while a pup is with its litter, training must continue throughout the dog’s life, with special emphasis during puppy hood.
How Long Do Puppies Teeth?
Puppies begin teething at around 3 months of age and should have all of their adult teeth by 8 months of age. Large dogs tend to fill in their teeth faster than do smaller breeds. During the teething phase you will want to keep an eye out for any retained baby teeth. Sometimes the adult tooth will come in beside the baby tooth, and fail to push it out. These will need to be removed by your veterinarian
Puppy Teething Solutions
- Never Punish: Never squeeze your puppy’s mouth shut, grab him by the scruff, slap him or use any type of physical punishment, since it usually makes the behavior worse.
- Taste deterrents: Are meant to discourage dog teething, as well as, the urge to chew and lick things that should be off-limits. Pet parents can apply taste deterrents to various off-limits objects outdoors and around the house-and even to their own hands. There are lots of options available in pet stores but you can make your own spray by combining 2 portions of Apple Cider Vinegar and 1 portion of White Vinegar in a spray bottle , ready for use. This spray has prevented most dogs from chewing on their leashes and furniture.
- Mental Stimulation & Exercise: make sure your puppy is receiving adequate physical and mental stimulation. Sometimes, puppies bite because they are bored and it’s something to do.
- Set Up Play Dates: with appropriate puppies and tolerant, well-socialized adult dogs. Your Canine Behaviorist – Trainer will instruct you about how to select appropriate playmates, read canine body language and stress signals, and how and when to intervene if play gets out of hand.
- Use Chew Toys: Introducing your puppy to age-appropriate dog chew toys early can also save your precious household items. Chew toys designated for puppies are a little smaller and softer than the adult toys. However, they still should be durable enough to handle aggressive mouthing. In fact, monitor your puppy during playtime and remove any destroyed chew toys immediately to prevent accidents from occurring. Don’t confuse your puppy by providing him with cute toys that resemble objects that you don’t want destroyed, such as rubber tennis shoes with squeakers, imitation remote controls or cell phones.
- Rope toys are some of the best teething toys as they are inexpensive, easy to clean, versatile and last a long time. Rope toys are great for teaching fetch, tug or for solitary chewing activities. They also promote dental health by helping to clean teeth and strengthen gums. Rinse the toys with plain soap and water every few days, and freeze them while still wet for extra soothing chewing.
- The Kong Company makes a variety of tough toys that are great for all levels of chewers. The original Kong product line includes hard rubber toys in which treats may be hidden. Puppies will work these toys for hours trying to dig the treats out of them.
- Cold Carrots: A cold carrot soothes the gums, tastes great and is rich in Omega 6 fatty acids, Vitamins A and K and Potassium. Puppies love chewing on carrots and watching them disintegrate. As carrots are also high in fiber, limit the puppy to one carrot per day to avoid stomach upsets it is best to clean, boil and then freeze. I prefer cold carrots to raw hides and bones which are more likely to cause a stomach upset in your dog.
- Play The Right Kind Of Games: Persuade your puppy to take part in non-contact forms of play, such as fetch and tug-of-war, rather than wrestling and rough play with your hands.
- Don’t Just Tell Him “NO”: Whenever you find your puppy chewing on something inappropriate, correct him with a “no.” Then give him a toy that you know he likes. Once he starts chewing on the correct toy, praise him.
- Train Your Pup To Not Teeth On You: If your puppy does nip you, say “ouch!” in a high-pitched voice and walk away. The best way to teach your puppy that nipping is bad behavior is by withdrawing your attention from him. When he stops nipping, reward him with affection and praise.
- Crate Training: Using a dog crate is a super way of toilet training your pup, as well as curb attention seeking behavior patterns of barking, whining or any bouts of anxiety and teething issues. If crate training is carried out properly, the dog will soon start using it as a den. However the crate must never be used as a means of punishment. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DQIWPEpsjlI
Remember that consistency is the key to all successful puppy training – the teething phase won’t last forever, but the good habits you instill in him or her now will last a lifetime!