However, you're painfully aware that he's no furry angel. Your heart sinks a little when friends call round. There's the inevitable barking and growling. But worse still, those visitors determined to make friends with him, risk a snap or bite at their hands.
This situation was far from ideal, but you coped. The friends now know to keep their distance and you tend to slip the dog into another room if he barks too much. But times change. Your first grandchild has arrived and instead of being an unmitigated joy, it's a source of worry. How can you have the child around if there's even the slightest risk the dog may bite?
You owe your Chihuahua a debt of gratitude and deep-down you know he's not a bad dog but he's fearful. So the idea occurs to you: What if there is a way to train your small dog not to bite?
However, do be responsible and take steps to ensure whoever helps you stays safe and doesn't get bitten. An important part of this training is not accidentally rewarding any aggressive behavior. While this sounds obvious, it's all too easy to do if the helper tries to reassure a dog that is growling and aroused. Instead, instruct your friend to ignore the dog and remain silent. Coincidentally this also makes the assistant less of a threat to the dog, which will help training.
The major requirements of teaching a small dog not to bite, are time and patience. You are trying to reshape deeply ingrained feelings and instincts, and this isn't going to happen quickly.
In order to get going you'll need: