Puppy Biting Problem


Puppy Biting or Puppy Nipping?

Subject to age, if truly your puppy bites, you may be facing the first two of the dog biting problems that you find listed in the article just linked (wound infection risk, transmitted diseases), but none of the other listed dog biting problems. I said "if truly your puppy bites" because young puppies, including German Shepherd puppies, don't bite at all.


Yes, you read that right! Young puppies don't bite at all. Typically puppies NIP - and a LOT - but they don't bite. For the difference see dog biting, and for much more detail and differences and explanations and everything, see our MYGERMANSHEPHERD PERIODICAL: We have several editions that feature the topic of biting dogs and biting puppies.

Impact of Puppy Age

For German Shepherds, the age when things can change is about 4 to 5 months - at which point a German Shepherd puppy is adolescent (and what damage adolescent boys and girls can do you may well remember from yourself). For other dog breeds timing is different.

By this time (age 4 to 5 months) you will (you should!) have done so much Bite Inhibition training and controlled play fighting sessions that nothing will change in terms of your biting puppy: it will all still be nipping, not biting.

Rescue Dog Difference

The exception is when you adopted a rescue dog older than say 4 months. Then obviously you have to start with what you got from the shelter or from the prior owner - neither of whom may have done Bite Inhibition training and controlled play fighting sessions while the dog was younger.

This is why in the case of dog adoption it is equally important to treat the adopted dog initially like if (s)he was a puppy. In many ways the adopted rescue dog is like a puppy: All is new to the dog at your place, and so the first 4 to 6 weeks of facilitation offer the same chances as does puppy development.

Benefits of Puppy Biting

Playful biting - which you know now actually is mouthing or nipping - is a natural behaviour of puppies. It helps puppies to establish their place in the litter and to discover how the world around them responds to their behavior. All that "puppy biting" allows your puppy to experience the environment, and how the puppy may fit into that new environment! Biting, nipping, and mouthing also stimulates the growth of the teeth, setting in of the teeth, and strengthening of the gums.

Yet "puppy biting" can be painful for the dog owner and family members, particularly for children. Not just for this reason Bite Inhibition training and controlled play fighting sessions from early on are so important! You do not really "fight" with the puppy, you formally invite the puppy to play, and since 80 to 90% of puppy play involves the mouth, it's called play-fighting. To really be helpful rather than detrimental to puppy development and puppy training, Bite Inhibition training and controlled play-fighting sessions need to follow a specific agenda. Details are in the free MYGERMANSHEPHERD PERIODICAL as well as in the Tim Carter books.

Biting Puppy

The above makes clear that IF truly you have a biting puppy, something was missed earlier. Certainly Owner training, almost certainly Puppy socialization, and likely Puppy training too. For more detail see Puppy Behavior problems.

Puppy Biting Problem

The earlier mentioned health risks aside, the real puppy biting problem is just one: That everytime when you feel that your puppy bites, you missed another chance to raise your puppy in a way to become a SAFE DOG for yourself and for others. So for example, don't even let your puppy nip your arm, and you consider this affectionate. Next time the same puppy - but meanwhile much stronger - may nip your small finger or your ear (or your child's ear), and you won't call that affectionate! Therefore don't set your puppy up for failure. Set your puppy up for best behavior.

This is what a Top dog expert says:
Find out more: Click to save vet cost, training cost, and your nerves!

So how can you avoid to miss another chance to raise your puppy in a way to become a SAFE DOG that behaves well?

See the long numbered list under Stop Dog Biting. And specifically for a puppy, also see Stop Puppy Biting.

Miguel at 28w Can you give back a bit today?





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  6 Site Comments, ZERO SPAM Add one


    Each article I read on stop puppy biting doesn't tell me how to stop puppy biting.


      Seems you don't read what page you're on. This page isn't about "stop puppy biting"!
      READING rather than COMPLAINING is a genuine benefit in life. ;-)


    My german shepherd puppy is 12 weeks and I can't get him to stop chewing on my hands, arms, ankles and feet. I have tried everything and nothing is working. He is starting puppy class next Wednesday, but in the mean time HELP!!!!!. I have had german shepherds all my life growing up and yes I know it is just a puppy thing and they were always trying to bite my hands, arms, ankles and feet but this puppy is just crazy, nothing is working.

    Thank you


      The first Interview with REVIEW would be perfect for you - and is far more valuable than the puppy class you've booked for a lot of money!&$%&%

      The Interview streaming isn't working in the comment section here, I've added a teaser snippet above at the end of the article.


    Hi..we got a german shepherd pup around a week back. He is 7 weeks old and is desperate to bite/chew anything and everything- hands, clothes, ankle, curtain, table.. We sternly say no everytime but it is not working. We have even gotten him toys to chew on but he prefers other things over them. Most of the time it is playful biting but he is always looking for biting- even when he is affectionately lying on our lap. Is this normal or linked to health issues? We had actually gotten him dewormed and he had puked and had loose motions the whole night. He was fine for couple of days post that and again puked and had loose motions today suddenly. Please suggest. We are first time managing a small puppy and are very worried for his health

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