Jekyll & Hyde puppy
So our 3 month old is a sweetheart. Very affectionate and full of energy. I'd say she's as mouthy as any GSD puppy judging by what I read on these forums. But sometimes she flips this switch where she starts biting pretty hard and will growl and jump around. At this point it's still just her playing as her tail is wagging and you can typically snap her out of it as soon as you distract her with something else (like rustling the treat bag and working on obedience/tricks). She just likes to roughhouse.
But when she persists then we give her a timeout and that's where things get dicey. When she knows she's about to get a timeout and I go to pick her up she tenses, the lips curl back, she growls deeply, and she starts giving me these sharp warning nips on my hands and neck while I'm carrying her. She doesn't really bite hard or try to hurt me, but she's definitely not happy about what's happening, and she's clearly not playing at that point.
As soon as we put her in her timeout spot, which is a small playpen, she's right back to being very submissive and affectionate (along with a good amount of crying and whining). After we leave her there for a few minutes we pull her out and she's just fine.
She only does this with me and my girlfriend. We have family who come over during the day to let her out and play with her and when people come over they never get this. She does get mouthy but nothing more than you'd expect from a puppy. She saves all of her hard biting and this snarling stuff for us.
We've had some luck so far with the "OFF" command which usually curtails her a bit when we can tell she's going to start getting rough and we're able to redirect her attention to a toy or tricks for treats. And I'm assuming she does it out of boredom/frustration because she typically gets into this "mode" when we're not paying attention to her or it's been a while between walks or playing in the yard.
I just want to make sure this is normal behavior and not some kind of mental thing. The hard biting is something we're hoping she'll outgrow as we continue to work with her and as she gets older but this vicious snarling/biting that she does as we take her to a timeout is unacceptable and if she continues to do it as she gets older it could be very dangerous.
Any advice/responses would be appreciated!
Last edited by PorkandBeans; 12-18-2012 at 10:02 AM.