How to Train a Husky Puppy to Not Bite

Easy
3-5 Weeks
Behavior

Introduction

Imagine this: you’re playing with your new Husky puppy when suddenly--Ouch! He sinks his little puppy teeth into your hand. Huskies are hunting dogs and as puppies, they are likely to instinctively begin practicing their skills, which include biting. If you have a young Husky, he is likely primed to bite as soon as he gets excited. This kind of behavior is especially a problem if you have young kids in the house. You shouldn’t be surprised if your puppy chases screaming or running kiddos around the house nipping at their heels.

Defining Tasks

What starts as cute behavior in a very young, small puppy can become an issue as your Husky grows and gains his adult teeth. Training your Husky puppy to not bite is crucial to raising a well-behaved adult dog. It may be difficult at first to stop your young puppy from biting and nipping, especially during play time. But if you provide consistent positive reinforcement, you should be able to improve your Husky puppy’s manners within a few weeks.

Getting Started

With this type of command, you need to train your puppy consistently as he is going about his everyday life. Whenever your Husky pup bites or nips you, you should stop the behavior and provide an alternative or reward him for stopping. Make sure everyone in your house follows the same rules so your puppy understands that biting a human is never okay. Depending on the method you choose, you will need treats, toys, or another alternative for him to chew on, such as a soft bone for puppies. Remember to use positive reinforcement. Reward your puppy when he behaves well rather than scolding him for biting.

The No Bite Method

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Step
1
Choose a command word
With this method, you will choose a command to use to stop your Husky puppy from biting. You can use a variety of cues, such as “Uh-uh,” “Hey,” or “No bite.” Whatever you choose, be consistent. Always use the same command word for when you want your puppy to stop biting.
Step
2
Wait for teeth
As soon as you feel your puppy’s teeth on you, use your command word and wait until you feel the pressure lessen. In the beginning, he doesn’t have to let go altogether. Once you feel him let up a little, reward him with praise and a treat.
Step
3
Keep it up
Continue practicing with your command word and have everyone in your house do the same. You want your puppy to connect the command word with a treat. Soon, he should start looking for a treat as soon as he hears the command, which will make him let go.
Step
4
Expect more from your pup
When your Husky starts to get the hang of the command word, hold off on the treat until he lets go of you entirely. Stop rewarding him if he only lessens the pressure, so he recognizes that the only way to get the reward is to stop biting.
Step
5
Exchange treats for a toy
After a couple of weeks of consistent practice, start weaning your puppy off of treats as a reward. Replace them with praise and a toy instead so he learns that toys are okay to bite, while humans are not.
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The Ouch! Method

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Step
1
Play with your puppy
The most common activity which will cause your Husky puppy to bite is playing. Keep in mind that for young Huskies, play time is about getting ready for hunting. Begin a training session by playing with your puppy.
Step
2
Say "Ouch!"
Wait for your puppy to bite you and then say “ouch!” You should use a high-pitched voice when you do so and then move the part of your body away from him.
Step
3
Replace your body with a better chew toy
You want to channel your Husky puppy’s instinct for biting into another more suitable object. A toy or a soft rope bone is a good choice and can help cue your puppy to the kind of thing that is acceptable to bite.
Step
4
Keep practicing
Be consistent with your actions and keep practicing with your puppy. He may stop biting hard but continue nipping. Start saying “ouch” every time his teeth touch your skin.
Step
5
Reward good behavior
Keep an eye on your puppy’s behavior and when you see him run for a toy while playing rather than biting you, reward him by saying “good dog” or giving him a treat. Remember, rewards for good behavior work much better than scolding for bad.
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The Mama Dog Method

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Step
1
Look to nature
When Huskies stay with their mom, she has ways of training them to not bite inappropriately. To get the behavior she wants, Mama Husky will grab her pups by the muzzle or the scruff of neck. If your puppy won’t stop biting, you can look to Mama Dog for some tricks.
Step
2
Gently grab your puppy's muzzle
When your puppy is biting you, gently place your hand around his muzzle. He should freeze or let go of you, as these instincts are part of his biology.
Step
3
Apply firm but gentle pressure
Once your body is out of your Husky puppy’s mouth, place a very light pressure to his muzzle as a cue for your puppy to stop biting. This action mimics what his mother would do.
Step
4
Use the scruff
If your puppy is still struggling to bite you, gently grab the loose skin behind his neck, known as the scruff, and hold. You shouldn’t shake your puppy or lift him up. Just hold his scruff until he freezes. Then cue your puppy to stop biting by applying gentle pressure to his muzzle.
Step
5
Redirect his energy
Once your puppy calms down and stops trying to bite you, give him a toy or a bone to chew on instead. Biting is an important part of communication for your puppy and you shouldn’t expect him to stop altogether. Redirecting his energy is an important part of keeping your Husky puppy happy.
Recommend training method?

Success Stories and Training Questions

Training Questions and Answers

Question
Kira
Siberian Husky
1 Year
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Question
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Kira
Siberian Husky
1 Year

My husky keeps nipping at me all the time when I come home and keeps jumping to nip at me as well and she only goes to nip at my hand or arm and doesn't listen to me at all when I try to tell her to stop

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
460 Dog owners recommended

Hello Conlan, Does pup have any history of aggression? Is the nipping purely out of excitement and play or are their any other signs of aggression. If the nipping is related to other respect or aggression issues I would proceed with the help of a trainer who specializes in aggression and behavior issues, who can further evaluate the situation and tailor a training plan to you. If this is aggression related there is the risk of a bite of you do the training yourself without the right help. If the nipping is truly out of excitement and play, then I suggest working on some boundaries and teaching impulse control. Leave It method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite Jumping and general rudeness - only do this for play biting. For aggression a different approach is needed. https://youtu.be/EcwvUOf5oOg Impulse control: Place: https://youtu.be/omg5DVPWIWo Crate manners: https://youtu.be/mn5HTiryZN8 Structured heel to build impulse pulse control, calmness and respect: https://youtu.be/OTiKVc4ZZWo Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Question
Lily
Huskita
3 Months
1 found helpful
Question
1 found helpful
Lily
Huskita
3 Months

My dog just nips at me when I try to pet her or give her a toy. She will continue nipping I'm not sure how to get her to stop. She doesn't respond when I tell her no or when I yelp.

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
460 Dog owners recommended

Hello Diana, First, I suggest working on the Leave It command from the Leave It method from the article linked below for the biting: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite When she gets really worked up and has trouble calming down, use the Out command or give her a food stuffed chew toy in a crate or exercise pen to let her calm back down - young puppies will often act wild when they are actually tired and need a rest time. Out command, "How to Teach a Dog the Out Command" heading part: https://www.petful.com/behaviors/how-to-teach-a-dog-the-out-command/ Second, work on teaching her tolerance to being touched and handled. To desensitize her to touch use her meal kibble. Measure her kibble into a bag (don't grab it out of her bowl), and feed her one piece of kibble at a time as a reward for tolerating touch. Start with areas she enjoys being touched on first, until she is comfortable with those areas, and gradually move onto touches in other areas also. Be gentle and try to make the training fun and relaxing for her. For example, gently touch her side while you feed her a treat - the touch should be brief and stop when the treat is gone. Touch her head and feed a treat. Touch her collar and feed a treat. Touch her paw and feed a treat, ect...until she looks forward to being touched. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

Hi Caitlyn I have a question, I recently adopted a 15 week husky female, she is very friendly, but when she plays she starts to knit at your face with her teeth. How do you stop this kind of behavior? Also when I put her in her crate when she starts to get to hyper she starts screaming, how do you correctly crate them?

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Question
Ace
Siberian Husky
10 Weeks
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Ace
Siberian Husky
10 Weeks

How do I stop him from biting

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
460 Dog owners recommended

Hello Sattraj, Check out the Leave method from the article linked below Work on teaching Leave It. Leave it will take time to teach but should help him develop self-control, but while he is still learning Leave It use the Bite Inhibition method since that method can be used right away. Puppy biting is normal at this age and will take time to stop. Be patient and consistent, recognizing that you should see a gradual improvement instead of an instant fix. Puppies have to develop impulse control to improve and that takes time and practice. https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Question
Alex
Siberian Husky
10 Weeks
1 found helpful
Question
1 found helpful
Alex
Siberian Husky
10 Weeks

I train Alex daily, take him for walks and runs (combined duration of walking and running is around 2 hour), I also play with him for at least 2 hours and take him in car rides still every time i leave him he starts howling, digging, and sometimes he cries.
How to solve the time consumption issue and the howling issue?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
460 Dog owners recommended

Hello Alexander, I highly suggest crate training. A crate will protect him during puppy destructiveness phases, give him the opportunity to learn good habits (like chewing on food stuffed chew toys), and prevent separation anxiety when done right. It can also help him learn to calm down and self-sooth. When you first introduce the crate there will be a few days of crying. This is normal. Check out the Surprise method from the article linked below to help him learn to be quiet. Also feed him food stuffed chew toys in the crate. You can make several stuffed Kong's ahead of time. Put his dog food into a bowl and cover it with water, let it sit out until it turns into mush, mix a bit of peanut butter (NO Xylitol - it's toxic), or liver paste or cheese into the mush. Loosely stuff the Kong's with the mixture and freeze them. Grab one from the freezer when you put him into the crate for longer periods of time. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate As great as training, play time and exercise are it sounds like what is lacking is actually time for him to practice self-soothing and calmness - just like any other skill, puppies need opportunities to practice these things with guidance in order to improve at them. A crate is a safe way to practice them. Stay consistent and don't let puppy out when he cries unless you know he truly needs to go potty (even then try to to it let him out when he is barking, wait until he is quiet for a second first). If the whining continues past two weeks you can correct it using a small canister of unscented pressurized air, Pet Convincer, blown at his side through the crate, in combination with rewards for when he quiets down, but most young puppies just need time and consistency to adjust. I generally suggest giving it two weeks of ignoring the crying if you live somewhere where that's an option. After two weeks or if you live somewhere that you cannot let him cry, then I suggest correcting with something like the unscented air pet Convincer (do NOT use citronella) combined with treats when quiet. Only spray a small puff of air at his side and never his face. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Question
freya
Siberian Husky
8 Months
-1 found helpful
Question
-1 found helpful
freya
Siberian Husky
8 Months

i can't get my 8 month old husky to stop biting and rough play, plus she jumps on every one. no matter what i have tried it doesn't work

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
460 Dog owners recommended

Hello Sean, Check out the video linked below that talks about jumping, mouthing, and being rough. https://youtu.be/EcwvUOf5oOg I also suggest working on a Place command - where pup works up to being able to stay on Place for 1-2 hours to help build his impulse control and teach calmness. Place: https://youtu.be/omg5DVPWIWo Your attitude and energy while doing this should be calm and confident for pup to respond the best to the training. Expect that pup can do this and work him through the training by being consistent about new rules and expectations and calmly executing them. You will likely need to keep pup with you on a leash for a while when you are home (and crate while gone) so that you and effectively enforce the new boundaries for pup to help him learn. Mouthing and general ride behaviors often aren't true aggression. If you have seen or see true signs of aggression, with pup intending to truly harm you, seek professional help from a trainer who specializes in behavior issues and aggression and has a lot of experience - some of the training will still be the same, but additional safety measures and management, boundaries, and structure will also be needed Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Jasper
Siberian Husky
6 Months
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Jasper
Siberian Husky
6 Months

My puppy will not stop biting. Ive tried the scruff method and he doesnt like it. It makes him actually wanna bite me even more. Ive tried closing his muzzle and ive also tried commands. He will not budge. Im not sure what to do because ive been working on this since he was 4 months. Now its bad because his adult teeth hurt even more than his puppy teeth. I dont know what to do anymore and its really frustrating. Ive done the yelp and ignoring method and its not working either. Ive even pressed done on his jaw and it wont work. Please help!

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
460 Dog owners recommended

Hello Brenda, I suggest working on a few things to help him develop impulse control first: Leave It command from the Leave It method...Use this command to tell him to stop or not start biting once you have taught the command well - like the method outlines: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite Out command (which means leave the area), use this command to tell him to leave an area, especially kids' or guests' presence, when the temptation is too much for him. There is a section on teaching the Out command, follow that. There is also a section on using Out to deal with pushy behavior also follow that section once he understands the command, to make him whoever he is biting. If he is biting someone other than you, you can get between him and kids or guests and be the one to enforce it for them. https://www.petful.com/behaviors/how-to-teach-a-dog-the-out-command/ Place command - have him work up to staying on Place for two hours. This is a good general command, teaches calmness and impulse control, and can help with management in general. This will take some time and practice, starting with just a couple of minutes on Place at first. https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-place-command-the-good-dog-training-tips/ At this age the biting could be partially a respect issue too. Some dogs have a strong defense drive and when you apply physical pressure of any kind they will fight back against the pressure instead of submitting and stopping the behavior. It is especially important with these dogs to use methods that teach respect but teach it using body language, consistently, obedience commands, structure, and other things that teach the dog's mind - instead of just getting into a physical confrontation with them. It is also very important for the dog to understand why they are being disciplined and to have the skills to stop themselves. Working on commands like Out and Leave It - that help the dog understand what you are asking of them, and commands like Place, Leave It, and the additional commands I have linked below can help build the impulse control and respect too. Crate manners: https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-the-crate/ Thresholds: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_-w28C2g68M Heel article - The turns method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-poodle-to-heel Heel Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OTiKVc4ZZWo Consistency method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-doberman-to-listen-to-you https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EcwvUOf5oOg Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Phantom
Siberian Husky
3 Months
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Phantom
Siberian Husky
3 Months

Phantom always bites me, he bites ALOOTTT !!! I tried to grab him from his scruff and with a high pitch NO BITE! , he became more intense and bites even more!!!! I dont know what to do will this behavior will grow with him because he will get his adult teeth and it will be a serious problem!! Please help!!!!!!!

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
460 Dog owners recommended

Hello Mariam, First, know that the biting is completely normal and not normally a sign of future aggression at this age. Almost all puppies mouth - which is where they bite to learn about the world around them, learn how to control the pressure of their mouths, initiate play with other puppies, and sooth sore mouths. Before 5 months of age it's completely normal and even healthy. With that said you are not another puppy so biting can really hurt! And puppies do need to be taught not to bite humans before their jaws strengthen around 5 months of age. Check out the article linked below. Work on teaching the "Leave It" command from the :Leave It method - this will help pup learn self-control, which is important for stopping biting. This will take a bit to teach pup so practice frequently and try to stay as calm as possible when pup bites (easier said than done I know). Reacting with anger or excitement can actually get some puppies more excited or cause them to fight back if they don't understand what you are doing - that's why calmly working on something like Leave It is important. Once pup understands Leave It and can do that well, then you can also use the Pressure method found in the same article as a follow-through if you tell pup to "Leave It" and they disobey and continue biting. It's important for the Leave It command to be taught and practiced before using the Pressure method though - so pup doesn't just think you are playing. I suggest working on a few things to help him develop impulse control first: Leave It command from the Leave It method...Use this command to tell him to stop or not start biting once you have taught the command well - like the method outlines: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite Another good command to teach is Out - which means leave the area. This command is good for when the temptation to bite just seems like too much for pup and they need to walk away completely to calm down. This is also a good command to use if there are kids in the house. You can enforce the command for them by getting between them and pup and walking pup out of the room like the "How to Use Out to Deal with Pushiness" section deals with in that article. https://www.petful.com/behaviors/how-to-teach-a-dog-the-out-command/ Many puppies also get really wound up when over-tired (sort of like a toddler having a tantrum). When pup just can't seem to calm down they may actually need a rest time. I suggest crating them with a dog-food stuffed Kong chew toy for a bit during these times. A puppies may also get really wound up if they haven't been mentally or physically stimulated yet that day (such as a training session or focused walk). Puppies generally learn to control the pressure of their bites - called Bite Inhibition, by playing with other puppies while young. I highly suggest enrolling puppy in a puppy class or puppy play group where they can have time to play with other, off-leash puppies in a clean, secure area. Check out the article linked below for tips on when to go and what to look for in a class - many large pet stores also offer free puppy play groups. Call around and see if there is one in your area if you don't want to sign up for an entire class. https://www.petful.com/behaviors/puppy-classes-when-to-start/ Finally, I suggest beginning to teach a Place command (which is like go to your bed). This will be a long-term goal. Start with teaching pup how to stay on their Place for just a couple of minutes, and over the next few months work up to staying on Place for two hours even when there are distractions like guests. Place can make life with a dog a lot calmer and give you a great management tool for times when pup gets really excited or rough. It also helps pup learn calmness and impulse control. https://thegooddog.net/training-videos/free-how-to-training-videos/learn-to-train-the-good-dog-way-place-command-the-good-dog-training-tips/ Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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Akira
Siberian Husky
8 Months
0 found helpful
Question
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Akira
Siberian Husky
8 Months

We have a 3 year old, Male, husky/lab dog. He is very well behaved and is fairly submissive towards other dogs, mostly because he has not been exposed to other dogs from bad previous experiences. We decided to get another dog, female, Siberian Husky, she is 8 months old. The person we got her from said she was potty trained, crate trained and could do all kinds of tricks. So far we have only seen her use the house as her personal toilet and bite our other dogs neck roughly while outside. We are working on the potty training but not sure how to handle the biting towards our other dog.

Also on a side note, our other dog has stopped eating food after the new dog came. Any suggestions?

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
460 Dog owners recommended

Hello Terry, First, it's important to determine what was going on when the biting happened. Some dogs will mock-bite when playing and rough housing. That type of biting, although not always wanted, isn't necessarily aggression. There will be no bite marks after, and there will be other signs of play like a play bow, relaxed, happy body language, or trying to get your dog to chase her. When that's the case, working on more structured obedience can help, such as Out, Place, Leave It, and Quiet. Teaching her to be calmer using those commands and following through consistently with them can help set a calmer tone in general for your household - it can also help reduce your other dog's stress. Out: https://www.petful.com/behaviors/how-to-teach-a-dog-the-out-command/ Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omg5DVPWIWo Leave It method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite Quiet method: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bark If the biting was more aggressive in nature, then it's time to hire a professional trainer who specializes in behavior issue and aggression to come to your home and work with you and the dogs in person. Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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