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How to Stop a Dog from Biting? [Warning Signs and Tips]

Updated by Sheryl on Sep 30, 2021

Regardless of the breed, every pooch likes to bite, chew, and investigate different objects using their needle-sharp teeth. While nibbling and biting is a natural canine behavior, teaching your fido not to use his tiny razor teeth on humans and other animals is essential.

dog bites wood

Dog aggression biting is a dangerous habit. It isn't only a threat to the safety of humans but also puts a dog up for euthanasia because most dog parents don't enjoy pups who mouth during play and interaction. Biting and nibbling are even more challenging to suppress in canines getting bigger by the day. Teaching your fido what is and isn't allowed to bite on is a matter of great urgency.

  • Why do dogs bite
  • Dog Warning signs before biting
  • How to stop my dog from biting when excited
  • How to get a puppy to stop biting

The first thing you need to remember is that every canine is capable of biting. Pups usually bite people when they are threatened. And unless your fido is severely ill, all dog bites are provoked by some action or event. Therefore, it is important to understand what kind of interaction provokes the dog's aggression biting. Here are some reasons why a dog may bite:

  • Be Territorial

    Canines can be possessive about their property, and "property" can be anything from their favorite toy, territory, treat, other dogs, or even humans. Your fuzzball may show defensive behavior by biting anyone or anything getting too close to their possession.

  • Fearful

    Fear is a significant cause of most dog bites. It is usually directed towards strangers. For example, if someone suddenly approaches a dog from behind, the pup can get startled and bite. Waking a dog up with a loud noise may also arouse biting tendencies.

  • Feel Pain

    Even the friendliest dogs can become snippy if they are suffering from pain and chronic injuries. Such fidos can react aggressively towards their trusted humans as well.

  • Mother's Instinct

    Motherly instincts can make a dog bite anything approaching its puppies. So if you have to handle the puppies, be gentle and respect the dog's maternal instant.

  • Predator's Instinct

    Running, cycling, and even jogging can trigger the predator pursuit of some dog breeds. The dog may start chasing by considering you as a prey.

dog bared his teeth

Canines often exhibit some warning signs before they bite. Knowing the symptoms will empower you to avoid similar situations in the future. These signs include:

  1. Growling, display of sharp canine teeth, and snapping are the tell-tale signs of trouble. All these symptoms should be considered as a warning.
  2. Avoiding eye contact, a perfectly still body with a slowly wagging tail, and lip licking are the early signs that your dog is feeling uncomfortable.
  3. Some dogs yawn to show off their teeth before biting.
  4. A rigid body and freezing in response to touch is another clear sign that the canine may bite.
  5. If a dog feels threatened, it may raise the fur on its back and neck.
  6. Dogs that make intense and direct eye contact while revealing the whites of their eyes are most likely to nip their target.
aggressive dog

Training an overly excited fido is pretty complicated as such dogs don't only nip but also try to knock you over with their sudden jumps. Fortunately, we have got a few tricks up our sleeves to help you stop your thrilled pup from biting.

  • Stay quiet

    Some old-school dog trainers believe that making a squealing noise may make your dog stop biting. Well, it can't be right as you sounding like a squeaky toy can make your dog more excited. It's better to stay quiet and ignore your dog to discourage this behavior.

  • Get out of your dog's reach

    When excited, dogs tend to jump and bite their owners to get their attention. To stop this act, you need to do something totally opposite of what your pooch wants. Simply get somewhere the dog can't reach!

  • Stop running

    While walking away from your dog, make sure you don't run. Running usually triggers the chasing instincts in canines, and they may think that it's part of the game.

  • Use the treat scatter method

    This method is the favorite go-to of many dog lovers. Take a fistful of your dog's favorite treats and scatter them anywhere on the ground. This track is excellent at calming most dogs down.

dig bites each other

Training a puppy not to bite you takes a while and a whole lot of patience. Of course, your puppy isn't going to catch everything in one day. Here is what you can do to teach your puppy not to bite:

  1. When your puppy bites you, try to divert its attention by offering a toy. Do whatever you have to do to make the distraction more exciting than nibbling.
  2. Socialization provides the puppies an excellent opportunity to learn that biting puts a quick stop to a fun time. This training classes are great at providing your dogs the socialization they need. Plus, the puppy will be taught lots of good-boy manners in the process. 
  3. Clicker training is a widely accepted way to teach your puppy some good doggie manners. It works by hitting the clicker every time a dog does something good. You can also offer some treats after giving a clicking cue.
  4. Some people suggest yelp when a puppy bites. Though this trick works, it can startle the sensitive little pup. We won't recommend using this trick on puppies as the purpose is to train, not make a hostage.
Sheryl is an editor from iPetor, owns extensive pet care experience. As a professional writer, she can provide useful pet care tips for all "parents".
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