A new puppy is a fun addition to your family, and anyone who has ever had a puppy in the house knows that they like to bite when they play. Puppies have 28 small, sharp teeth. Although biting your fingers and toes can be annoying as well as painful, it is an important part of the teething process. A personal injury law firm Las Vegas says that there are ways you can teach your puppy what they should bite and what they should not.
If you have ever watched a litter of puppies or older dogs play, you will see that they naturally nip at each other. Puppies often don’t realize how hard they are biting and occasionally one of the dogs will yelp if they are bitten too hard. If your dog bites you harder than they should while playing, make a loud sound, saying “OW!” or “That hurt.” The dog will instinctively back off and, when they do, be sure to reward them with a treat.
If you want your dog to learn that biting is unacceptable, end playtime when they bite. This doesn’t mean yelling at them or physically punishing the dog. Instead, turn your back and tuck your hands into your armpits. This is a calming signal and a form of attention withdrawal which signals to your dog that when they bite, they get no reward at all.
Offer an Alternative
Once the puppy realizes that biting is not acceptable, provide the dog with something they are allowed to bite. If the dog nibbles at your toes, offer them a chew toy instead. If the dog does not take the toy and continues to nip, end playtime until they get the message that it is okay to bite their toy but not okay to bite you.
Consider Spaying or Neutering
Although spaying or neutering your dog does not guarantee they will never bite, research has shown that a dog that has been altered is less aggressive than a dog who has not, especially male dogs. Although neutering does not resolve all behavior problems, it lowers the testosterone level, which can lead a dog to be aggressive. Las Vegas personal injury law firm attorneys recommend spaying or neutering at a young age to help reduce the risk of a dog bite claim.
Any Dog Can Bite
Never make assumptions that your dog will not bite, no matter how well trained it is, a personal injury law firm Las Vegas says. Many times, people are bitten by a dog because an owner falsely believes their dog would “never bite.” A dog who is in pain or an older dog who is less tolerant of people petting them could end up biting someone, whether it is you, a family member or a visitor to your home. Also, don’t be misled by the size of a dog. According to a survey conducted by the Center for Disease Control, although large dogs like bulldogs, bull terriers, pit bulls and German shepherds made the list for the most reported dog bites, the rest of the list were small dogs. These included chihuahuas, which were number one, Lhasa Apso, Jack Russell Terrier, Cocker Spanel, Pekingese, and Papillion.
If a dog bit you or a family member, contact the Las Vegas personal injury law firm, The Schnitzer Law Firm. You can arrange for a no-obligation consultation by calling 702-969-4050, emailing [email protected], or filling out the secure online form today.