How to Train Your Bull Terrier Dog to Not Bite

Medium
2-8 Weeks
Behavior

Introduction

To you he’s the cuddliest and cutest thing you’ve ever seen. He doesn’t argue back and he loves you unconditionally. He’d also never cause you any harm intentionally. However, your Bull Terrier's nature he can be extremely protective. Recently, he’s tried to bite at your new partner when he’s come too close. He also occasionally displays signs of aggression and biting behavior at other dogs when they get too close to you. This behavior could be seriously problematic. If he gets into a habit of being he could cause someone serious harm. Not only could this result in expensive medical bills, but worst case scenario he could have to be put down.

Getting a handle on this behavior is essential. Fortunately, Bull Terrier dogs are, on the whole, well-tempered and easy to train. So, all is not lost. Getting this training right could even save him from serious injury if he gets into a fight with another dog.

Defining Tasks

Because Bull Terriers are so receptive you can definitely train this biting behavior out of him. To do so though, you’ll need to take a number of steps to deter him from biting altogether. You’ll also have to react quickly and firmly when you do see any worrying signs. Part of training will also require you to direct his energy elsewhere. With the right incentive, you’ll soon see results.

Bull Terrier puppies are particularly energetic and responsive. This means you could see results in just a couple of weeks. If he’s older and this habit has developed over many years then you may need a couple of months to fully break the habit. Succeed with this training though and you won’t have to be on edge when you meet new people and pets. You also won’t have to worry about leaving him with the kids.

Getting Started

Before you start training you’ll need to get your hands on a few things. A water spray bottle and a deterrence collar will be needed for one of the methods. You’ll also need some treats or his favorite food broken into small pieces. 

Some toys and food puzzles will also be needed for one of the methods. A muzzle may also be a smart move until training is complete. The main component though will be time. You need to be on hand to monitor and react to his behavior as much as possible. 

Once you have all of those things, you just need patience and an optimistic attitude. Then work can begin!

The Deterrence Method

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Step
1
‘NO’
Bull Terriers want to please by nature. This means strong disapproval from their owner should have a significant effect. Whenever you see him bite or look like he’s about to, give a firm ‘NO’ command. Look him in the eye as you do this and calmly remove him from the situation.
Step
2
Water spray bottle
Carry a water bottle with you at all times. If the ‘NO’ doesn’t work you can use the bottle to deter him. Give a quick spray close to his face. This will make him think twice before biting next time.
Step
3
Deterrence collar
These can be bought from a range of online and local pet stores. They are remote controlled and you simply hit the button when you see him bite. The collar will emit an unpleasant spray of citronella. He’ll soon start associating biting with negative consequences.
Step
4
Remain calm
It’s important you don’t terrify him when using any of the above steps. If he becomes scared he may become more aggressive. This will only lengthen the time it will take to yield results. So, stay calm at all times.
Step
5
Patience
The steps above can be used in conjunction with each other. However, don’t lose faith if they take a little while to work. It’s about showing him there will always be a negative consequence. That can take a little while to hammer home.
Recommend training method?

The Positive Encouragement Method

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Step
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Exercise
Bull Terriers need lots of exercise. Those that don’t get enough can act out in any number of ways, such as biting. So, make sure he gets a good, long walk each day. You can also throw a tennis ball as you go. The short sprinting will tire him out. This could help release that pent up energy.
Step
2
Tug of war
Spend a few minutes each day playing tug of war with him. This is an effective, controlled environment for him to release any aggression. Make sure he always wins the game, otherwise he’ll soon give up playing.
Step
3
Give him space
Make sure he has his own space he can escape to. Bull Terrier puppies can often feel overwhelmed, especially if kids are always trying to play with them. So, if he retreats to his crate or bed, let him have some alone time.
Step
4
Reward
Make sure you reward gentle play. That means giving him the odd treat when you're stroking him and he remains calm. If he associates gentle play with food he’ll have a serious motivation to remain relaxed.
Step
5
Attention
Make sure he gets enough attention each day. If he spends long periods of time on his own then he may get agitated and frustrated. The biting could be attention-seeking behavior. So, dedicate a few minutes each day to giving him the love he needs.
Recommend training method?

The Time Out Method

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Step
1
React
When he bites or displays any signs of aggression you need to react quickly. Take him by the collar and lead him out of the room. Shut him in a room for 30 seconds. Make sure there are no toys in there for him to play with. Say nothing as you take him out.
Step
2
Release him
Once the 30 seconds is up you can release him from the room and allow him to rejoin you. Try not to get him worked up and keep him calm when he’s back with you. Just make sure you keep a close eye on him in case the behavior resurfaces.
Step
3
Increase the sentence
If he bites again then repeat exactly the some procedure. However, this time leave him in his time out room for an extra 30 seconds. Once the time is up you can bring him back in again. Add 30 seconds onto his sentence each time he bites until he gets the message. He’ll soon catch on.
Step
4
Boundaries
If the biting usually happens around certain individuals or kids then you need to address how they’re behaving around him. Don’t let them play around his mouth, for example, and make sure they’re giving him enough space.
Step
5
Encouragement
Make sure you show him how happy you are when he plays calmly. You can talk in an upbeat voice and give him the occasional treat. This combination of positive and negative reinforcement will swiftly show him what is and isn’t acceptable.
Recommend training method?

Success Stories and Training Questions

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