Biting/Thrashing
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Thread: Biting/Thrashing

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    vanike927's Avatar
    vanike927 is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultBiting/Thrashing

    So the first few days with the pup has gone wonderfully... no accidents in the house and there was no biting... until my 12 year old niece came over and played rough with her. I expressed to my sister and niece that I'd prefer Autumn not play too rough (especially thrashing) because we have a cat in the house and I want Autumn to not pick up that habit. Much to my dismay they continue playing with the dog rather roughly. That was last night. Starting this morning, Autumn has begun doing all play that is rough (biting and thrashing) leaving my arms cut up.

    I yelp and say ouch and ignore her, but now when she gets a good grip she thrashes. I can't distract her with toys and have an insanely hard time prying her mouth off my sweater or flesh.

    Any ideas on how I can inhibit this behavior? She has tons of toys from plushy stuff to hard rubber. She only really loves the Kong when there's food in it. I would like to take her on walks to alleviate the boredom (one theory as to why she's biting), but she doesn't have all her shots yet.

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    BigBrownDog is offline Senior Member
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    This is your puppy. If your family members don't listen to you when you tell them that they cannot play rough with the puppy (and you are absolutely correct) pick up the puppy and put her in the crate and explain again that you cannot allow that kind of play. Period.

    As for now - she needs this behavior interrupted. When she initiates like this squirt her with water. Or if she is being very mouthy roll her upper lip under a tooth and press just enough to elicit a reaction (withdrawal or a yelp). She has to equate biting with pain.

    And - continue with the YELP when she contacts skin. If she is not deterred with the above discontinue play and put her in the crate for a time out.

    And - you can play fetch in the house or the yard. You can get exercise into a small puppy!
    Sharon, Blaise and Diesel.

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    OK first of all! YAY for choosing Autumn! ha ha! that was my choice

    I completely agree with Sharon... it is YOUR puppy and you have control over how the behaviour is shaped. Puppies learn behaviour from others and they pick up on it so fast. Exercise will definitely help too. I've found that my pup is less likely to nip me or want to play rough if he's had exercise. Even running around the yard a little bit can help or rolling a ball around to chase.
    Malone, my Chocolate Drop!

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    Thanks for the replies and reassurance that I'm trying to do the right thing. My family can be a bit difficult to deal with, when I presented my reasons for training her not to play that way it all went in one ear and out the other with a reply of "you're supposed to play rough with a puppy." At that point, I just took the pup out into the yard and ran around with her there.

    I will definitely be running around in the yard more often with some toys to keep her busy until I can take her out on walks. Though I think she might be allergic to our grass. Every time she comes back in from outside she's fairly itchy and has been excessively cleaning herself to the point where she's rubbing her belly raw. I checked her for fleas (just in case) but nothing. We'll be taking her to the vet later today instead of waiting the week and a half until her 3rd round of shots so that he can address her irritated belly.

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    BigBrownDog is offline Senior Member
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    Some people use baby wipes on dogs who are sensitive to environmental irritants. you can also just rinse her off in the sink/tub and dry her with a towel. No shampoo.
    Sharon, Blaise and Diesel.

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    my arms looked like that when Aspen was little and i never let anyone play rough with her. I agree no one should play rough with Autumn however she might have just been adjusting to a new environment. I thought i had the best puppy ever for about 2 days and then once she got comfortable her true colors started to show and the nipping was relentless. The water bottle was a life saver for me. At 4 months and teething she still tries but it doesnt leave a mark anymore, and it's not as much. Plus it's much easier to correct her now. Well she listens to correction now. sometimes.


    Amanda

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    Autumn LOVES water so I'm not sure plain water in a spray bottle would do the trick. Are you using plain water or is it mixed with something?

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    Quote Originally Posted by vanike927 View Post
    Autumn LOVES water so I'm not sure plain water in a spray bottle would do the trick. Are you using plain water or is it mixed with something?
    Aspen loves water too but for some reason a straight shot of plain water does the trick.


    Amanda

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    BigBrownDog is offline Senior Member
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    A shot of water in the face is enough to interrupt the behavior.
    Sharon, Blaise and Diesel.

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    Thanks you guys. I've tried the spray bottle which definitely interrupts the behavior. She just barks and wiggles her butt at the spray bottle, which I interrupt by giving her her favorite chew toy.

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