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Puppy keeps biting

8600 Views 41 Replies 15 Participants Last post by  Valerie Oneill
My 5 month old gsd puppy keeps biting my girlfriend really hard. He will just run upto her and start attacking her (playfully.) I yell NO to him and sometimes he stops, but sometimes he doesn't and when I try to pull him off her he sometimes starts biting me. He also starts biting me really hard out of nowhere when I take him for walks sometimes. How can I get him to stop? I have tried yelling at him and jerking him with the leash, but nothing seems to work. And when my girlfriend yells at him or pushes him away, he thinks she is playing with him and starts doing it harder. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

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Redirect his biting to a tug toy, and don't push away/ignore when he starts biting hands. Once he enjoys the tug, use it as a reward for obedience.
You could try the Bitter Apple method described in the articles at (or better yet, get Ed's basic obedience video). I have not tried using Bitter Apple and I am not crazy about the initial steps suggested with it (I.e., soak cotton balls in Bitter Apple and force them into the pup's mouth and hold their mouths shut for a minute or so). I don't like the idea of just doing that out of the middle of nowhere on a pup, but I am a candy ass that way.

I used those yellow bulbs of lemon juice. Palm the lemon juice and when the dog gets gnawing, quickly and silently give them a good shot of lemon juice. Make sure the bulb is well in their mouths--you don't want to get any in their eyes. Once they connect the scent with the lemon juice, you can squirt a few drops on you and others' hands and the dog will leave you alone. Worked very well for my young kids. Same basic idea as the Bitter Apple, I just would rather use lemon juice than Bitter Apple and rather use a reactive negative enforcement than a random, proactive way.

Others may have other ideas. To Lyn's point, redirection makes the most sense to me if you've not tried it yet. I should have stuck with that way longer, I just didn't have a lot of room for error with my small kids and my dog was quite the nibbler.

I would check out the Leerburg articles and videos first if you've not done so, in any case. They tend to present perspectives on about any issue you may have, from collar types to PITA puppy issues. The basic stuff seems to be regarded as more right than wrong for new folks like you and me.
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I agree with redirection. A puppy, just like a child has to learn what it can bite and what it can't. Redirection of the behavior to a favored toy or tug is a good method. I'd be fairly certain that at this age it's nothing more than play and exploration. Puppies like children do a lot of exploring with thier mouths. Sometimes, just taking an object away makes them more curious. Giving them something other to do redirects that behavior.

Quote:My 5 month old gsd puppy keeps biting my girlfriend really hard. He will just run upto her and start attacking her (playfully.)

Really hard? Try grabbing his neck and shaking the snot out of him. Redirection, I have found is pretty temporary. 5 month is when they first try to figure out who is who. A good face slapping can put the brakes on this behavior as well. It is inappropriate behavior.

However, if you couldn't possibly explain to him that his behavior sucks and has to stop, you could try a flat collar. :lol: :lol:

Mathew, the redirecting OR the scruff shake both have their own merits if done correctly. A lot has to do with what your goals are with your pup. However, very few people here will use a face slap for ANY type of correcting. That's a great way to create a hand shy dog. With a serious dog and an inexpierienced handler, it could also get you bit.
Jeff, as a child, I was slapped across the nose with a newspaper for peeing on the floor. I now pee in the waste basket but I've never gotten over that first trauma. It created soooooo much stress and behavoural problems! :D :D :wink:
Hand shyness occurs over a period of time. This is an appropriate time, as this aggression is based on rank within the pack.

Of course I am not talking about wacking the dog as hard as you can repeatedly until the dog is unconcious, but in todays world I should have made that clearer.

ALL my dogs have gotten wacked for biting the snot out of me at one time or the other. None have hand shyness, and to think that they would is crap. If the dog was ever so delicate, he would not be biting her like that. I am going to go ahead and say it will end up OK. Lets face it, most people will take a butt whippin from the dog and not do much about it. A good smackin is needed occasionally. Please look up the meaning of any words that you do not understand, so I can stop typing. :p

Call me old fashioned, call me old, either would be a relief from what I'm often called. None the less, I dont slap, kick or punch dogs. I don't think there is a need for it. If I'm going to correct a dog for a behavior it's going to be using the leash and choker. A puppy biting the hand is nothing more than exploration, at least the way the original poster described it. Rather than corrections of any sort, I'm first going to try and redirect.

Hows that workin out for ya? :p

To be honest, I redirect 30% of the time and slap the other 70% because I'm lazy and don't have tugs lying around all the time. I just don't feel comfortable advising people that lest I be labelled a puppy abuser. :p Jeff is right, though. This should hardly affect a dog that's hard enough to be biting like that in the first place; unless of course my GSD at the moment just has issues he isn't telling me about. He isn't hand shy. Sometimes I wish he were--he can be such an annoying snot.

Nevertheless, it's good to be able to redirect when you can, since you can turn the pup's energy into something productive.
Quote:{ :p Jeff is right though. ]Quote
:eek: :eek: My god! You went and done it now!
IT'S ALIIIIIIVE! :lol: :lol: :lol: :wink:
:lol: :lol: Don't worry, be happy! :wink: After you've been on for a while it will come to you. :lol: :wink:
Gee, that almost makes me afraid to continue browsing this forum. :eek: :lol:
Lyn Chen said:
Gee, that almost makes me afraid to continue browsing this forum. :eek: :lol:
As well you should be.


The last time that happened, back in ought five, I think it was,
women screamed and strong men wept.
Is the puppy biting down REALLY HARD? Does he draw blood? When you push him away, does he come at you "stiffer"? Is he self assured in slippery surfaces, with loud noises, rides in a car, water? Is he healthy? Does he like chasing bals? If the answers are should DEFINITELY re-home the dog. PM me and I will give you my address.
Bob Scott said:
Quote:{ :p Jeff is right though. ]Quote
:eek: :eek: My god! You went and done it now!
IT'S ALIIIIIIVE! :lol: :lol: :lol: :wink:
Yyyeepp.....could turn into an all out rodeo, including the clowns!!! :lol: :lol: :lol:

It's been awhile since any of mine were puppies but have always done what Lynn said with a sharp "LEAVE IT" or "NO" when they cross the line. No yelling, maybe slightly louder. I try for 75% redirect and 25% other means. When they latch on and won't let go I usually hold their nose leather (making sure I cover their nostrils) just hard enough for it to be uncomfortable. I know, I know but, hey, they hate it and it works, especially, if you spit on your fingers first! When using this "rocket science" technique I use the "out" command. Mind you, my dogs are pets, we are not into sports. Do want good manners though! Mine also seem to know what " you little turd" means!!!!

Set the puppy up for failure. Put your hand down so that he can bite it. When he does use your fingers and turn his lip inside his mouth and push it against his little puppy teeth. When he hollers you did good. He thinks that he bit his own lip. He figures out that if any part of your hand goes into his mouth, he hurts. He will stop doing it.
My sport dogs or dogs for work, I don't do this. I redirect.
THanks for all your replies guys.

Andres why the hell would I re-home the dog?
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