How do I teach my puppy to stop biting - German Shepherd Dog Forums
 
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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-12-2017, 01:22 AM Thread Starter
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How do I teach my puppy to stop biting

Hey everyone, I'm new to this forum and a first time gsd owner or dog owner for that matter. I have an 8 week old male puppy who loves to bite especially hands and legs. I understand that he is still a baby and he's not always going to listen but his biting is starting to become aggressive and he's breaking skin. He can't get training until he's had all this shots. While I do my best to have patience and control my temper, my other family members are not very thrilled to being bitten all the time. If he bites one of them too hard I'll have to give him up. Advice as to how I can curb/control would be greatly appreciated.
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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-12-2017, 10:04 AM
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Ive got an 11ish week old puppy, picked her up at 8.5 weeks.
I've been having good luck with always having a toy on hand when giving her attention and redirecting my pups attention to the toy when she bites.

When playing constantly training the "release" command, she's getting fairly good at spitting out whatever is in her mouth when I say it, and when it's your hand that's pretty dang useful hahaha.

When she's getting way too wound up or just biting too hard she either gets ignored or we take her lip and curl it around her teeth. Biting down on your lip smarts! And she's starting to make the association and be a little bit gentler.
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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-12-2017, 10:26 AM
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Perhaps your family was not ready for a puppy? All puppies bite. German shepherds are one of the worst breeds for biting while young. Maybe an older dog that is already partially trained would be/would have been a better choice.

For me, redirecting to a toy every single time worked well. I got lucky with my puppy, and he wasn't terribly mouthy anyway, but redirecting worked very well. Within a few weeks he was no longer biting hands or feet. When he got excited, he ran and got a toy.

Time outs also work too. If you or your family are getting frustrated, pop the puppy in a kennel or x-pen to give everyone some time to cool down a little bit. I would try to explain to my family that puppies do bite and that it will pass. If you stick it out, you will be more than glad you did. German shepherds are amazing dogs, and if given time to mature a little bit, your pup will soon become your best friend.

Good luck!

Forrest - GSD 9/1/2016 - 5/14/2017 RIP
Brooklyn - Golden retriever 1/30/11
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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-12-2017, 10:47 AM
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When Samson was little we taught him "gentle". He could be mouthy but not bite hard. We aldo redirected a lot. If he bit hard we would say "ouch" loudly and stop playing with him.

As he's gotten older and more powerful biting is totally off the table. We tell him no and stop playing with him if he gets mouthy. I have popped his butt with a newspaper when he wouldn't stop.

Generally speaking, if he's mouthy now it's because he's board. A worn out Samson is a much better behaved Samson. :-)
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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-12-2017, 11:49 AM
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I used a hard scruff and a loud "no" because he would not stay off of my 2 year old daughter. I haven't had one issue since then and he was about 11 weeks at that time.

Archer
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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-12-2017, 11:52 AM
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Ah the infamous land sharks strike again! All puppies bite, especially GSDs. This is normal puppy behavior. At one point I got so upset she kept trying to nip me hard at 9 weeks that my husband thought I was being so silly for taking it personally! Redirect with toys or a bone is very handy. Now at 1.5 years old - she loves her toys and bones so much, she has yet start the urge of biting furniture, personal belongings, etc. Whenever she feels the urge to bite or get some good teeth time- her benebones ate her #1 choice. Redirect towards toys, bones, or a loud "ouch" + ignoring the behavior.
Even at 1 she still debates on biting our hands when we wrestle, but it's easy to give a firm "easy" or "gentle" command to snap her out of it.
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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-12-2017, 12:43 PM Thread Starter
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I know that all dogs bite and my family knows that too. My parents have had dogs before in the past but it's been a long time so they are pretty well aware. I've always wanted a gSd and I did some research beforehand so I knew what I was getting myself into, and I'm more than willing to wait it out. I used the redirection to his toys and he has gotten quite good at responding to my "release" command. When he gets worked up I do put him in his pen until he calms down. All those things work for ME. I can't say the same for the rest of my family members
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-12-2017, 12:46 PM
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There is a good reason GSD puppies have been given the nickname "land sharks". Most are bitey little monsters when they are babies. We have a little 9 week old shark here at the moment and he certainly earns the land shark title.

The best thing you can do is have lots of toys, chews and treats around. When he bites, put something else in his mouth. Redirect and praise, and redirect and praise... They will grow out of it in time. If he gets too wild, put him in his crate and walk away for a few minutes and let him calm down, or take him outside where there more interesting things to do and explore than trying to eat you, lol.

Good luck and remember, it does get better. Trying to 'correct' a puppy so young really doesn't do much good. It can be tough, but stay positive, they do grow out of the mouthing.

Tom
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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-12-2017, 01:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jayyb2013 View Post
While I do my best to have patience and control my temper, my other family members are not very thrilled to being bitten all the time. If he bites one of them too hard I'll have to give him up.
Hopefully you wouldn't really have to give him up for biting! It is always hard to remember what owning a puppy really was like, especially if it was years in the past. Just keep doing what you're doing, and I hope that your family will find that your methods also work for them. You are committed to waiting it out, but is your family committed to it as well? Perhaps I am misinterpreting what you stated in your original post, but to me it sounds like this behavior is something your family wasn't prepared for and that it may cause the puppy to be sent elsewhere.

If everyone involved is committed long-term, you have been given some great advice and ideas to try! It'll take some time, but you will get there. Deep, calming breaths are needed.

Forrest - GSD 9/1/2016 - 5/14/2017 RIP
Brooklyn - Golden retriever 1/30/11
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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-12-2017, 01:37 PM Thread Starter
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I definitely need to get them on board with being consistent with the methods mentioned. I didn't just spring a puppy onto them. We were taking care of 6 pit bull puppies 3 or 4 months back for my sisters friend while he got his situation under control. For the 2 months they were with us they were VERY well behaved puppies; they would rarely bite/chew/or bark and we're very playful. My family took to them quickly. It's probably going to take a minute for them to adjust because my pup isn't as easy as the pits were lol.
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