There are four games you can play right now that will help expedite learning for your puppy or dog. I’m sharing each game plus why and how to play so you can start immediately. We’re also going over how toy selection can increase or decrease how often you get bitten and busting some myths about tugging with a pup. You’ll also learn what to do if your puppy or dog touches your skin or clothing with teeth when you are playing.
Be sure to check out Podcast Episode 17: Help! How do I STOP Puppy Biting?! for my Puppy Biting Protocol.
We’ve also got a journal for you to download to record your puppy’s acquired bite inhibition progress. Follow all the tips from my two podcast episodes on puppy biting to fast track your pup’s learning and your success.
In the episode you'll hear:
- Why playing dog training games expedites learning and helps with bite inhibition.
- Why most dogs never bite with the intention of hurting you.
- What a dog’s fear means in relation to a bite.
- What abnormal biting is and why it needs a Veterinary Behaviourist.
- How toy selection can increase or decrease the bites you get from your puppy.
- Puppy tugging myths busted.
- How to play my “Search”, “Collar Grab”, “Intentional Tugging” and “How’s It Taste” games and the benefits for you and your puppy or dog.
- The difference between intentional play and mindless play.
- How to redirect a puppy bite to your skin or clothing.
25 days and counting until we pick up our Icelandic Sheepdoog puppy. We are watching 2-4 videos a day. Enjoying them all and are challenged as we better understand your philosophy and actions in training.
Hi all – I need an alternative to the collar grab when my Aussie bites my clothes. We’ve been playing the collar grab game since the day he came home at 8 weeks, and he doesn’t mind me grabbing his collar at all. He is an intentional tug champion and drops it when I say “thank you.” But he goes in and out of Level 4 biting – blood and tears in clothing. And because he’s a herder, he chases my feet and bites at my shoes and ankles. Here’s the issue: when he’s fired up and in bitey mode and I grab his collar (to bring his mouth closer to the bite target), he loves it — thinks it’s a game and then starts wrestling, biting the hand that’s holding the collar, rolling around upside down snapping at the air, all in good fun. What would you recommend as an alternative to the collar grab in this situation? Thanks so much in advance!
I have a border collie and border collie lab that both nip and the lab mix is worse. I’d like to follow your question as well. They like to nip people leaving the fenced in yard and have. It’s so embarrassing.
Leslie, I am awaiting any answers here. I have a tiny bichpoo (in comparison to your Aussie) who is only 9 weeks old but is displaying a similar pattern of following my feet, biting feet, clothing and even an ankle or two. When I practice the collar grab, she looks at me like. Oh Ok this looks fun and the biting of my hands could start. But she is tiny so I feel like I am able to stop her but it is me, not her making that decision. This is my first dog. She is a beautiful ball of soft fluffy fur, but those baby teeth….. No blood drawn at this time but if I don’t nip it now there could be. Here’s to stopping those curious bites.
I cannot thank you enough for your beautiful and intentional and kind and powerful and AMAZING methods for training dogs!!! I recently read your ebook as well and had a question (or maybe request for a future podcast since you had asked for inspiration!). In the section about the iceberg, you mentioned specifically herding instincts and nipping/flanking that come with those. I’d love to know how to address those before they become an iceberg. (We will be getting a puppy soon that is a herding breed but will just be a family dog). Thank you!!!
Really enjoying the puppy podcasts! Focusing for this week or 2 on the biting/biting games. I am seeing a big improvement! She is a 17 week old Miniature American Shepherd, smart and confident. When I first got her the biting was awful! But I could see the range of bite intensities in your descriptions. I would not say she hit Code Red either although she drew some blood from my husband a couple of times in her exuberance to play in the fly-by style. Those spiky teeth hook on pretty easily! We are doing Collar Grab, IYC, planned tugging, waiting by the door – I guess that would be a sort of extension to her crate games or mat work? Trying loose-leash walking but that is in the very early stages and not much success happening there yet – she is very curious and distractible still. Take care! 😊
If the dog is biting the pants while walking or grabbing shoelaces, or your shirt, do you still do the collar grab? Wilma
I loved this podcast and the one previous. I have only had my pup for 5 days and already have noticed some mechanics problems on my part. There is so much to learn but I can see that Gustavo is interested and ready to learn/play/make great choices. I just need to practice my own understanding of puppy behaviour and the mechanics of my own behaviour so we can be a great team.
I have a year old Black Lab mix, and when I freeze – he continues to pull the toy extremely hard. He’s about 55 pounds. I enjoyed watching this lesson again, as I forgot about the collar grab step. I will give it a try, and see if that helps. Thanks, I will let you know how it goes. He also really does not seem interested in high value treats so much when we are in the intentional tug game. Maybe I should try another tug toy instead of a high value treat????
Hi Susan I have taken your Recallers class and loved it! I have a litter of puppies going to their new homes in a few weeks and have recommended you to them. I am wondering if it is ok for me to print out this Acquired Bite Inhibition Journal for each of them? I am hoping having a paper copy might help them to use it, and to remember to look at your site for training instructions.
My older dog takes off and runs after other pets , people, motorcycles, just about everything, and she pulls me down! I’m 74 and have been injured by this! I have had her about 5 years! I adopted her! She is Belgian malinois! I don’t care to use electric collars! Can you help me! I’m on a fixed income and have tried to find a trainer but they are usually too expensive or they use electric collars !!
I am so glad to have found your u tube videos and style of training. I have learned so much and it is now fun to train my dog. Our first golden we had from a puppy. Our second we rescued at 13 months (1 year with a family with kids then 1 month with a very busy household- 3 adults, 7 kids (8-18) and 2 dogs. I don’t know much other then that as far as background. Our first was not fence aggressive but this one is to a point – if you (Human or animal) walk by on the side walk which is about 12 feet from the fence he runs back and forth barking very fierce, but if they walk up right next to the fence he stops and then wants to play. I would like to see a pod cast on how to stop the excessive barking. I know some barking is good to let us know someone is there. Right now I bring his attention to me, ask him to be quiet and treat then repeat until who ever it is passes, but I don’t see any improvement
Another valuable lesson and will rewatch for how to tug better for my Gemma sometimes doesn’t let go of the toy we are playing with and she is 15 months old but I went Gaga when I saw the bostie puppy or was it a frenchie. I wanted to be there to kiss them so much 😁❤❤ Again definitely will rewatch this for so helpful but all your programs are⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐❤❤❤❤
I am really enjoying listening to your podcasts, not getting much else done! 😂.
5 stars 😊.
Other topics….puppy sits down on the walk, onlead & wont move, I think the puppy is uncomfortable & more work needs to be done on that, take it back a bit etc. BUT what to do at the time?.. Wait for them to make a good choice- eye contact, moving then maybe reward is dropped so they hv to get up? Teeny weeny collar grab to encourage a choice, then fade collar grab? What games would help or is it all confidence?
Thanks for your amazing podcasts, can these biting games still be used for a 15 month old puppy if they are still biting when frustrated?
Love these podcasts. I listen to them when I run and before I know it my run is over. I can’t wait to try this work my 4 month old Dane who does have good bite inhibition but will still put his teeth on me with no pressure. Thank you so much. From a chemistry teacher to a dog training teacher, you are excellent at what you do.
Hi Susan, this comment comes from the Netherlands. Thank you so much for your inspiring podcast. I do have a question though.
I have a Malinois puppy of 9 weeks old. His name is Ygor and he is born in a workingdog litter. So he has an extra drive on biting. We knew what to expect of this kind of dogs. We had a malinois before. She was almost 15 and died a couple of months ago. But this little fellow is really one of a kind. He bites more and hard. Do you have any tips that can help me out on the part on which “freeze” and cookie doesn’t satisfy him because of his driven caracter of biting?
I appreciate these podcast soooo much. I do a lot of in home private sessions and just when I feel a little over whelmed with a dog that I’m teaching you come up with another podcast. This biting one is by far the best since most of my clients are puppies and it seems to be the number 1 issue. Thank you Thank you Thank you!!!
p.s. I teach recallers only!!