How to Train a Rottweiler Puppy to Stop Biting

Medium
3-7 Weeks
Behavior

Introduction

You love to play with your Rottweiler puppy. Your new friend is a furry, energetic roly-poly and you have loads of fun playing with them. But every once in a while, they get their sharp puppy teeth on your hand and it really smarts! Even as a puppy, your Rottweiler has a strong grip. Now think of how that same nip will feel when your tiny pup is 75 to 130 pounds of full grown dog. Training your Rottweiler puppy to stop biting is not only good for you now. It is an investment in a well-behaved adult dog in the future.

Defining Tasks

Some owners fear that a few nips and bites from their Rottweiler puppy mean they are destined to be vicious. Biting is actually a natural behavior for puppies and is an important part of their development process. With their siblings, puppies play fight to learn skills and the reactions of their littermates teaches them how to play without hurting the other person. Rottweilers are energetic and loyal. If your puppy is biting you, it probably just means they are bored and want to play. By working with your puppy early to stop biting, you can prevent issues with aggression and dominance down the line.

Getting Started

The only truly effective way to stop your Rottweiler puppy from biting is to be consistent with how you react to the biting. Whoever interacts with your pup needs to follow the same rules so your Rottie can learn what is and isn't allowed. During training sessions, you can use rewards like treats or chew toys. In cases of stubborn biters, you may need additional tools, like a squirt bottle with water or a shake can.

The Bite Means No Play Method

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Step
1
Play with your pup
Start a game with your Rottweiler puppy and while you are playing, let your pup gnaw on your fingers a bit. Pay attention to the amount of pressure they use and wait for a moment when they bite too hard.
Step
2
Imitate a puppy yelp
When puppies play, they let out a yelp when their playmate bites too hard. As soon as your Rottweiler puppy bites hard enough to hurt you, imitate a high-pitched puppy yelp. Let your hand go limp at the same time.
Step
3
Give your puppy an opportunity to be gentle
After a second, return to playing with your puppy. Allow them to bite gently on your hand again and pay attention to the pressure just as before. If they get too rough, yelp again and let your hand go limp.
Step
4
Walk away
After the second time, stop the game, get up, and walk away. Leave your puppy alone for 15 to 20 seconds before returning to the game.
Step
5
Reward good behavior
Repeat these steps several times. At first, try to go five minutes without your Rottweiler puppy biting you. If they make it, give them a treat. Then, try for 10 minutes. Then 15. Any time your puppy slips up and bites too hard, stop the game. Make sure everyone else in their life follows the same rules and your puppy will learn to play gently in no time.
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The Spray Method

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Step
1
Get a spray bottle
Fill a small spray bottle with water and keep it with you whenever you play with your puppy. You should try the 'No Play' method first to see if you can train your Rottweiler puppy not to bite without using a spray bottle.
Step
2
Play with your puppy
While you are playing with your puppy, let them chew on your hands and nip. As soon as the pressure becomes uncomfortable say "ouch, no bite!" Then stop the game by letting your hand go limp.
Step
3
Give them a squirt
Use your free hand to grasp the spray bottle and give your Rottweiler pup a gentle spritz from the water bottle. The spray will surprise your dog and they probably won't like being wet. This physical correction should come close after the biting so your puppy associates the bite with the spray.
Step
4
Start the game back up
After a couple of seconds, return to playing with your puppy as before. Follow the same steps each time they bite by saying "ouch" and giving them a quick squirt. Be careful not to squirt your pup in the eyes or nose so as not to hurt them.
Step
5
Transition away from the water bottle
As your puppy starts learning to be gentle, stop using the squirt bottle to correct them. Try saying "no bite" instead and giving them a chance to correct on their own. If biting returns back to the same levels, you can add the squirt bottle in temporarily as a reinforcement.
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The Scruff Shake Method

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Step
1
Try less aggressive methods first
Physical correction, like with the scruff shake, should only be used if your Rottweiler puppy resists the other methods of learning to not bite. For some dogs, this method can backfire and make them more aggressive, so keep a close eye on changes to your puppy's behavior and stop using this method if biting increases.
Step
2
Start a game with your puppy
As with the other methods, begin your training session by playing with your puppy and letting them chew on your fingers. Wait for them to bite too hard.
Step
3
Use a verbal correction
Start off with a verbal correction when your puppy bites on your hand with too much force. Tell them "no bite" or say "ouch."
Step
4
Add in a physical correction
After your verbal reaction, gently but firmly grab the loose skin on the back of your puppy's neck and give him a little shake. It shouldn't be enough to scare or hurt him. Instead, you're mimicking the actions of a mother dog who is fed up with her pup biting her.
Step
5
Phase out the physical correction
Only uses the scruff shake a few times and quickly transition it out. This reaction should be enough to quickly teach your Rottweiler puppy that rough play is not tolerated. Make sure to reward gentle play as well to show your puppy what actions you do want, rather than only the ones you don't.
Recommend training method?

Success Stories and Training Questions

Training Questions and Answers

Question
Punisher
Rottweiler
2 Months
0 found helpful
Question
0 found helpful
Punisher
Rottweiler
2 Months

Bites hand alot
Pee on bed
When we show palm to stop he growls and run to bit

Caitlin Crittenden
Caitlin Crittenden
Dog Trainer
422 Dog owners recommended

Hello Chirag, I highly suggest switching training methods for the biting. Crate training pup and crating him at night so he doesn't have access to the bed at this age while not potty trained - this is also extremely important for when he gets older and enters a destructive chewing phase where he can chew apart and eat things- which could be life threatening. For introducing the crate use the Surprise method from the article linked below. Once the crate is closed and they are getting used to being in there, most puppies adjust within 3 days, and almost all puppies within 2 weeks. Surprise method: https://wagwalking.com/training/like-a-crate When he cries in the crate, ignore the crying until he falls asleep or calms down. The first few days be prepared for hours of crying. Many only cry for thirty minutes then fall asleep, but hours is not unusual - so stay consistent and calm, and wait until you get that quietness before you let him out of the crate unless he needs to go potty. Do be aware of when they have to go potty. At 8 weeks a puppy will need to go potty every 2-3 hours, and every 1 hour when not in the crate. Every month you can add one hour to that number during the day. The amount is different overnight because they are asleep. With an older puppy you can discipline the barking at the same time to help train, but an 8 week old puppy simply needs time in the crate to realize that nothing bad happens to them while they are in there, that you always return, and that they can just sleep or rest and it will be okay. This involves letting them cry at first until they learn to sleep or chew a chew toy. I highly recommend feeding pup part of his meals kibble via a dog-food stuffed hollow Kong in the crate at this age - to help with crate training and keep them soothed and entertained. For the biting, be patient. Honestly, this takes weeks and sometimes a couple of months to teach. Biting is completely normal, nothing is going to work completely instantly; it will take consistency over a period of weeks. With that said, there may be a better method for your pup! Check out the article linked below and follow the Leave It method. Once pup clearly understands "Leave It", then you can gently use the Pressure method found in the same article linked below as a follow through if puppy disobeys Leave It once they understand that command. It's important to teach Leave It first though because when you use the Pressure method, puppy needs to understand that they were told to stop and disobeyed and the consequence is because of that...Without that understanding many puppies will just think you are roughhousing and will fight back. Puppies naturally bite other puppies to communicate, learn how to control the pressure of their bites, and learn...They have to be taught that people are different than dogs. Leave It method, then Pressure method for the biting: https://wagwalking.com/training/train-a-shih-tzu-puppy-to-not-bite For the growling, it sounds like pup may be afraid of hands. If you are using any methods that involve physical roughness with your hands, then I would switch to a different method. Also, work on getting puppy used to touch and handling. Use puppies daily meal kibble to do this. Gently touch an area of puppy's body while feeding a piece of food. Touch an ear and give a treat. Touch a paw and give a treat. Hold his collar and give a treat. Touch his tail gently and give a treat. Touch his belly, his other paws, his chest, shoulder, muzzle and every other area very gently and give a treat each time. Keep these times calm and fun for pup. Finally, I suggest joining a puppy play group or kindergarten class that has time for moderated off-leash play with other puppies under 6 months of age. Puppies play differently than older dogs and one of the best ways for a pup to learn how to control how hard they bite is through playing with other puppies. Such a class is also great for socialization with people and dogs. Check out this article about when to attend and what to look for - if you can't find all of these things than a group where puppies just play together is still beneficial - interrupt puppies whenever one starts to get too rough or overwhelmed and wait until they calm down a bit before releasing them again to play in the fenced area: https://www.petful.com/behaviors/puppy-classes-when-to-start/ Best of luck training, Caitlin Crittenden

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