Getting Past the Puppy Teething Stage

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shutterstock_220393642If you have ever raised a puppy or are currently in the process of doing so, you probably understand the trials and tribulations of puppy nipping. This mouthing is an essential part of development for your puppy, however that doesn’t mean you have to be your pup’s personal chew toy. In fact, there are several things you can do if your dog’s mouthing has become a problem!

Let your puppy know he is hurting you when he bites

This may sound silly, but actually yelping and speaking your puppy’s language to let him know that his biting hurts you will help him understand that biting a human is bad. Your new dog is used to playing with his littermates where biting is a common and encouraged part of the game. By imitating the sound of a hurt dog while simultaneously stopping playtime, your puppy can more clearly interpret what he did wrong.

Replace your hand or arm with a dog toy

This technique of replacing your body with a chew toy shows your dog what types of objects are appropriate to nibble on. You can slowly remove your arm or hand from your puppy’s jaws and replace it with her favorite dog toy. Another trick is having an assortment of puppy toys with different textures around. This will stop her from getting bored and moving on to chew on your favorite pair of shoes.

Use a bitter tasting spray

You can find different kinds of sprays at your local pet shop that are designed to deter dogs from chewing. Bitter apple sprays are a common, harmless spray that tastes gross to puppies. By spraying this on your hand and letting your furry friend nibble on you, he’ll quickly realize you are no longer a desirable chew toy. These sprays can also work on furniture and other items you want to keep safe from your mouthy pup.

Use your words

Some pet owners find that using a command works well to communicate to their puppies to stop chewing. “Leave it” is a common phrase that signals your dog to stop biting. By having a command at the ready, you can avoid the mistake of yelling at your puppy or using physical force.

Training a new puppy can be difficult when they enter into the mouthing stage. Fortunately, the dog walkers and trainers at Walk! ATX can help your new puppy with his or her manners, teaching new pet owners how to work with their furry companions. If you are interested in our dog walking, dog training, or pet sitting services, please call (512) 655-9557 today! Our pet-loving team would be happy to speak with you about your doggy needs.