She’s adorable. Those fluffy ears. Those tiny paws. Those sharp teeth. Wait, that part isn’t as cute…
The bad news is that teething usually lasts about 4 months. The good news is that there is a light at the end of the tunnel – and there are some ways to make this time easier on both of you.
If you’re desperate to get through this phase of puppyhood with as few scars as possible, read on for some tips to help break the biting habit.
- Don’t play empty handed. If your puppy is near, make sure you always have a toy at the ready. When she goes for your fingers, you can pull a bait and switch and remind her you have her favorite squeaky toy instead.
- Fight the urge. If she does get a hold of your hand, try to avoid the instinct to rip it away. We don’t want her to get the wrong idea and think that this is a fun game. Let out a loud high pitched yelp instead. This should startle her enough that she’ll release her grip and you can pull your hand away. Wait 20 – 30 seconds and try to begin play again. Repeat. If you continually have to correct your puppy’s biting during a single play session, it’s time to take a break and step away.
- Encourage play with other dogs. The best teachers are other dogs. A well-behaved adult dog will help send the message that it’s not okay to bite. As long as you know the dog well, they tolerate puppies and other dogs, and that they’re up to date on their vaccinations, your pup will benefit from their knowledge and experience. Don’t be too alarmed if the adult dog pins your puppy down, nips at them, or even barks or growls. It’s just how they communicate their message.
We’re always happy to help give you other ideas and suggestions if you’ve got a teething puppy on your hands. Give us a call today.