It’s a commercial break during Keeping Up With The Kardashians so you slump onto the floor to play around with your dog. You mess around with one of his toys and tease him with it. But as soon as Kendall is back on the screen you go back to watching the TV. He doesn’t like that though, and he starts to bite and nip at your arms and legs. Alternatively, when you do carry on playing with him, he gets so excited that he starts nipping at you then too.
Training this behavior out of him is essential. Dogs that start with nipping often progress to serious biting and you don’t want him hurting you or anyone else in your household, like the kids. He could also end up biting someone else’s dog and you don’t want those hefty vet bills to deal with.
Training your dog to stop nipping isn’t always straightforward. You need to address why he’s nipping in the first place. You also need to divert this aggressive behavior towards a safer channel. Training will consist of asserting your position of control and cutting out any biting triggers. If he’s just a puppy, this behavior won’t have developed into a habit for life yet and you may be able to cut it out in just a week or two. If he’s been nipping at people for many years, then be willing to put a month or two into training.
It’s important you get this training right, not just for your health but also for his. If he ends up biting somebody or another dog and doing them serious harm, he may be court ordered to be put down. You don’t want to lose him further down the line when you could have nipped the problem in the bud now.
Before you can wage war on his nipping you’ll need a few things. Some toys he can play tug of war with and to re-direct his aggressive attention will be needed. You may also want to invest in a deterrent spray, a citronella collar, and a muzzle.
Treats or some tasty food will be required to motivate and reward him. Then you just need to commit to spending some time on training each day.
Once you’ve got all of those bits together, just bring an optimistic attitude and you’ll be ready to get to work.