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Hi all! I joined the German Shepherd club last week with a new addition to my family. I've been trying the Bite Inhibition method mentioned on Dog Star Daily; but yelling out "ouch!" or leaving the room seem to do nothing for her. She seems to continue to bite just as hard, or even harder when I come back to play. One of my friends advised me to hold her mouth closed or putting her on her side every time she bites too hard. I was wondering would this be a good idea?

Also sometimes when we are playing she gets a little too excited. She starts to snap at us and the air, she also barks when she gets too excited (for reference she very, very rarely barks). I just wanted to confirm with you all whether this is normal puppy behaviour.

Thanks!
 

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No those would not be a good idea, either one.

Do get a nice big rope toy and shove it in her mouth when she's biting you, and play TUG. Gently tugging, at this point, due to baby teeth.
She bites because she wants to play!
Give her that release by giving her plenty of opportunities to bite the right things. Rope toys and large stuffies (safe ones) are particularly satisfying :)
 

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My pup is 18wks and still bites and I've tried the "ouch" and "leaving the room" and neither worked also. Telling her no, off, or no biting and redirecting her to a toy has worked for me. So right before I see she is about to nip, I would tell her no or just throw a toy at her if I have one handy :) it won't happen overnight but it will in time. Still waiting patiently for mines to stop :p


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We used "ow" on Miss Molly and sometimes had to yell it very LOUD. You have to make it seem like you have really been hurt.

We didn't try to get her to quit biting though, but rather to ease up a bit, and we encouraged that behavior. She probably thought boy, these humans are real babies.

It took awhile but she learned to use a very soft mouth on people, like a bird dog might with a dead duck.

Maybe it doesn't work with every dog but it sure worked with her.
 

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Thanks for the replies!

My pup is 18wks and still bites and I've tried the "ouch" and "leaving the room" and neither worked also. Telling her no, off, or no biting and redirecting her to a toy has worked for me. So right before I see she is about to nip, I would tell her no or just throw a toy at her if I have one handy :) it won't happen overnight but it will in time. Still waiting patiently for mines to stop :p


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I forgot to mention I have tried both no and off, and redirecting. I find that sometimes when I redirect her with a chew toy in my hand, she bites my hand while im trying to give her the toy. Also after she gets the toy, she stops playing with it after around 10-15 seconds, then attempts to bite me again. Should I stick with redirection, or try a different method?

I've heard some people have had success with a squirt of water to their dogs when they bite. Would anyone recommend this?
 

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We used "ow" on Miss Molly and sometimes had to yell it very LOUD. You have to make it seem like you have really been hurt.

We didn't try to get her to quit biting though, but rather to ease up a bit, and we encouraged that behavior. She probably thought boy, these humans are real babies.

It took awhile but she learned to use a very soft mouth on people, like a bird dog might with a dead duck.

Maybe it doesn't work with every dog but it sure worked with her.
This also worked for me, I like that my dog knows the difference between how hard she can bite my hand and how hard she can bite her toys, this will come in handy when she is older I am sure.

Thanks for the replies!



I forgot to mention I have tried both no and off, and redirecting. I find that sometimes when I redirect her with a chew toy in my hand, she bites my hand while im trying to give her the toy. Also after she gets the toy, she stops playing with it after around 10-15 seconds, then attempts to bite me again. Should I stick with redirection, or try a different method?

I've heard some people have had success with a squirt of water to their dogs when they bite. Would anyone recommend this?
Make the toy more fun that your hand, smoother it with peanut butter, play a fun game of tug with her, whilst playing tug, get really excited and happy that she is biting the toy and not you. You have to go really over the top when you play with your dog, a good trainer once told me, if you play with your dog and dont get out of breath, your not doing it right.
 

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Redirection works, it just takes a lot of patience and constantly carrying a toy around - all the time. A lot of the frustration with the pups is that time and consistency WILL eventually win out but it is not overnight. Water will eventually become a game with a nice gator dog GSD and they will want to bite the squirt bottle. They were bred to bite and saying "ouch" or fighting with them just usually makes the game more fun.

Make the toy interesting and great fun and, hard as it may be, your hand needs to be dull and uninteresting....ignoring the bite if you can't beat them to their mouth with the toy. The more you fight when they have hold of you the more fun it is. As in the previous post. Toy=fun, Hand=boring.

Watch the hair too - that was my pups favorite to go for (face and hair)
 

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Welcome to landshark-ville

Jocoyn nailed it the best - ALWAYS carry a toy with you. We do mean ALWAYS. Most GSDs as puppies are freaking monsters (hence the term landshark). You need to be consistent - each and every single time you do the exact same thing.

I think it was selzer that said it best in a thread a couple of weeks ago - simply keep shoving toys in their mouth until they stop!

Water will eventually become a game with a nice gator dog GSD and they will want to bite the squirt bottle. They were bred to bite and saying "ouch" or fighting with them just usually makes the game more fun.
This is so true ... and you'll only discover it AFTER you've made the mistake of doing it. Some dogs do learn with the OUCH ... generally, not the GSDs ... I did it a couple of times with Ky, and like Jocoyn mentioned, it ramps them up ... she thought it was a freaking game, and then she'd start barking and howling.

TIP: Make sure the toy is WAY bigger than your hand LOL
 

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Thanks for the replies!
I forgot to mention I have tried both no and off, and redirecting. I find that sometimes when I redirect her with a chew toy in my hand, she bites my hand while im trying to give her the toy. Also after she gets the toy, she stops playing with it after around 10-15 seconds, then attempts to bite me again. Should I stick with redirection, or try a different method?

I've heard some people have had success with a squirt of water to their dogs when they bite. Would anyone recommend this?
Welcome to the forum. I totally feel your pain, your dog sounds just like my 15 week old GSD Tess. I have tried everything from redirecting to ouch and leaving the room and nothing has worked to stop her biting. I give her a toy and she will bite me, she gets mad and bites me, she even bites either me or my husband when she has to go to the bathroom, as if she's a little kid who can't hold it and demanding me to stop the car and let her go. They are so much like little children going through their terrible two's it's incredible!

I have tried the squirt bottle once and she loved it, thought it was another game, so don't even bother with that one. When I would yell ouch, she would only bite harder and when I tried to leave the room, I'd have to run to get away from her because she'd bite the back of my legs and heels.

I now carry a toy with me all the time and shove it in her mouth and shake it back and forth whenever I see her begin to slip into this mood and attempt to bite me. It is horrible, they just don't realize how sharp those little teeth are. I know I still have a ways to go with Tess but at least I know now that it is a GSD puppy thing and that I do not have an aggressive dog on my hands. Go back and read some of the previous posts on this board, you'll be surprised how many other's have gone or are currently going through the same thing.

I don't really have any advice for you but wanted you to know that your aren't alone and that there are other's here in the same situation....dealing with a land shark!

Good luck and hang in there!
 

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Welcome to the forum. I totally feel your pain, your dog sounds just like my 15 week old GSD Tess. I have tried everything from redirecting to ouch and leaving the room and nothing has worked to stop her biting. I give her a toy and she will bite me, she gets mad and bites me, she even bites either me or my husband when she has to go to the bathroom, as if she's a little kid who can't hold it and demanding me to stop the car and let her go. They are so much like little children going through their terrible two's it's incredible!

I have tried the squirt bottle once and she loved it, thought it was another game, so don't even bother with that one. When I would yell ouch, she would only bite harder and when I tried to leave the room, I'd have to run to get away from her because she'd bite the back of my legs and heels.

I now carry a toy with me all the time and shove it in her mouth and shake it back and forth whenever I see her begin to slip into this mood and attempt to bite me. It is horrible, they just don't realize how sharp those little teeth are. I know I still have a ways to go with Tess but at least I know now that it is a GSD puppy thing and that I do not have an aggressive dog on my hands. Go back and read some of the previous posts on this board, you'll be surprised how many other's have gone or are currently going through the same thing.

I don't really have any advice for you but wanted you to know that your aren't alone and that there are other's here in the same situation....dealing with a land shark!

Good luck and hang in there!
Thanks heaps! Good luck with your pup too. Your pup really does sound very similar to mine :)

I guess redirection is the way to go to stop nipping. But will this also help with teaching bite inhibition?
 

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Thanks heaps! Good luck with your pup too. Your pup really does sound very similar to mine :)

I guess redirection is the way to go to stop nipping. But will this also help with teaching bite inhibition?
I can't say for sure whether it will or will not but I am noticing a change in Tess due to my teaching her the "OFF" command. I have been working with her on this command every day and now when she goes to bite me or lies down and puts her teeth around the tip of my foot, I will say OFF and slowly but surely she is beginning to let up on the biting.

They are extremely smart, the other command I am working with her on is drop it and I started this by enticing her to pick up her rope toy and then click and treat when she drops it. At first I didn't add the word drop it, just clicked and treated when she gave me this behavior. Now she's doing it to get me to give her a treat, even when I am not training her. I'll be cutting up something in the kitchen and she'll keep picking up her rope toy, dropping it and looking to me for a treat...she's a hoot.
 

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I guess redirection is the way to go to stop nipping. But will this also help with teaching bite inhibition?
Redirection does teach bit inhibition.

Inhibition: a state created at synapses making them less excitable by other sources of stimulation.
 
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