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Hello, I am new to the forum and have found lots of helpful info. My puppy, Archer, is a 16 week old terror. We got him at 8 weeks from a highly reputable breeder and did lots of research/preparation before his arrival. We've been attending puppy kindergarten for a few weeks and he also goes to the dog park and socializes at play group (now that he is fully vaccinated).

He is smart and has taken to basic training (potty training, sleep/crate training, basic commands, ect...) extremely well. However, he is a horrible biter. I say bite, because this has gone beyond puppy nipping. He actually jumped up and bit my SO's earlobe last night while we were watching TV, tearing it. He has destroyed tons of clothes and left us bruised and bleeding on many occasions. He also snarls and barks when he does this. His tail is wagging, so we initially expected he was just playing.

Here are the corrective strategies we've already tried to no avail:
1. yelping/wincing like another dog.
2. Stopping and shouting at him, no, bad, uh-uh, ect...
3. Turning our backs/shunning him. This does not deter him - instead he bites whatever body part is closest
4. Spray bottle - likes water, is not deterred.
5. Distracting/redirecting with a chew toy - he drops the toy and goes back for us. We try to distract with a squeeky toy to get him to let go of our pants or hands and he is so crazed, he can't be distracted with the noise.
6. time outs - we designated a time out space and put him in there for 1-2 minutes after he starts biting. He has learned that we will only take him out when he's calm. So we put him in and he immediately calms himself. The second we take him out he starts biting again.
7. The pet corrector - air horn/hissing type thing from Petco our trainer recommended. He stops what he's doing and then immediately starts back up. We try to engage him with a toy when he's distracted but he won't do it.
8. Pick him up off the floor or roll him on his back and hold him down until he submits. This seems to make him crazier.



He is being exercised. After work each day, the three of us go for a walk - usually 2-4 miles. He has all sorts of engaging toys and is walked every 3 hours throughout the workday. He also goes to the dog park and playgroups. He socializes at puppy kindergarten class on Saturdays, and every Sunday we take him to my in-laws for a couple of hours to play with their dogs.


The biting/snarling/barking is getting out of control. He is growing rapidly at a rate of 1-2lbs a week and it is getting more difficult for me to physically restrain/control him. I have read a number of books and consulted a variety of sources on how to deal with this. I understand he is so young we need to have some patience, but I also understand that this is a problem that can escalate if not addressed.

We are tearing our hair out and just don't know what to do!


I appreciate any insight you may have.
 

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Oh dara just saw your post and wanted to quickly say YES it will get better and I know a number of others on this board will back me up. There are other posts on here that talk about how a number of us went through this with our doodles as pups. For me, one time Ace was literally hanging off my coat sleeve - I thought he hated me at times as a pup as he specifically gave me a very hard time. But I can tell you that by six months (I know that seems like such a long ways away) he was a different dog. You sound like you are doing all the right things. when you just can't stand it anymore put him in another gated part of the house just to give yourself a break. I know I had too. It WILL get better. Your dog is smart and I think just acting out of frustration and challenging you. I'm looking at Ace right now - sleeping on the couch. like an angel..but can remember being in tears and having the same concerns. Stick with it!!! You will have an excellent dog.
 

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not with my Toby..but, with a german shepherd a many yrs ago..

same experience your having..very aggressive behavior..

rather doing things that would indicate he would be dominating me..i had to take a more aggressive role..whether it was play..or him testing me..i show d my displesure by taking him to the ground with my hand over his muzzel saying *NO* loudly..of course i did this when he was 6 mos..cuz he was nearly 80lbs at a yr..

understand that my shepherd had a very high prey instinct..and though he was well behaved with the family..i had to really keep an eye on him in public..
 

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Something deep nite said triggered the thought that I had to stop sitting on the floor with Ace playing with him. It will help if you stay "above" him. Also, immediately when there is an issue, whoever he is having the issue with should put him in a sit. If he's going crazy, step on the leash and do it.

Also I did the Cesar Milan tsch noise when I was unhappy with him, and a quick touch/poke on his neck - simulates what his mother would have done. He seemed to get that.
 

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Chloe would nip & draw blood with thoes puppy needle teeth when we played on the floor. My wife started putting a toy in her mouth & said " you bite this " soon Chloe would pick up a plush toy & want to play with it in her mouth so there is no chance of bites on us when we wrestle & tossle on the floor with her.
 

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We had one of the hardest times ever with our puppy that sounds a lot like how you are describing. She is 1 year old now and has gotten over this phase - thank goodness. It was a very difficult time that's for sure. I came to this forum a lot then to get advice and it helped me immensely. Some of the things that helped me were the same as some of the others have mentioned too.

1) Stay above the dog when they are in "crazy" mode. Stay standing. Don't sit on the floor or crouch to their level or sit on a chair/couch etc. Be tall. We had to have a rule where we were not allowed to sit on the floor with her as she would get even more riled up when we were in nipping zone.

2) Choose one technique and stay consistent with it. We also tried numerous techniques and none seemed to be working for us either, until we realized we just weren't sticking to any one technique long enough for it to work. We would try one method for a couple days and it didn't work so we would switch to another. IN the end, we chose just one of the techniques and stuck with it. We really didn't see results until after about 3-4 weeks. That was how long it took her to connect her behavior with the reaction.

3) Redirection. When she would try to nip/bite we would quickly put her large rope toy on her mouth. It was good to have a nice big one (way larger than you would think to have for a pup so small at the time) With a big one it was easy to quickly grab it and have a larger amount of 'object' between her and her sharp little puppy teeth! It acted as kind of a shield and at the same time after a few weeks taught her that sh had to bite the rope toy and not us! Otherwise we would not play with her.

4) I know you have tried a lot of things already and as I mentioned the key is to just give whichever technique you choose enough time to kick in. One thing we found worked (after many, many time of reinforcement) was that whenever she was acting hyper and biting/nipping etc, we would say "enough" and then if she still didn't stop, then we would say "too bad" and leave the room. She didn't like being left alone in the room so after awhile she got the point. After a few weeks, we would just say "enough" and she would consider it warning and would usually back off - knowing if she didn't we would leave the room again.

In general, we found that after age 6 months she calmed down a lot and was easier to manage. She is still full of beans in many ways but it does get easier after the 6 month mark.
 

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I had the same problem with Frank. I got him a smart toy to challenge his brain and his behavior changed drastically. He's 16 weeks and only hangs onto my clothes when he gets over excited on his walks. He doesn't really nip anymore either.
 

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I've been having similar puppy issues. Gordon is 5 months and I am on him like a hawk. I also have two kids at home, 4 and 11. Both like to cause a reaction with the dog, but in general want to play with him. The problem is, Gordon is big, mostly legs, but the weight is coming on too. I don't let the kids sit on the floor with him (because, frankly, he is bigger than the kids at that point).

All of his puppy teeth are gone (I have never seen so many teeth collected from a dog before--previous dogs either just swallowed them or whatever. I actually was FINDING them!), and teething/nipping behaviors are mostly over (he chews on his kongs and puppy blanket), but I still see him "playing" as a dominate dog. My husband and I are definitely leaders to him, and he responds in that way, but with the kids that has been an issue. Though the 4yo has better control than the 11yo, neither really understand why they can't let the dog jump up on them (they still see this as cute).

When he used to jump up on me or bite at my clothing (he still SOMETIMES does this to the boys, usually when outside with them) I would tell him "NO!" and if he actually nipped me, I have taken him down to the ground telling him no (never hurting him, mind you, just for correction).

We are slowly working the puppy behaviors out, and getting the manners in place. But it is a challenge for sure. I am wondering if after the neutering he won't be quite as pushy to be dominate? He is turning into a great dog from a juvenile delinquent (he's still one, but getting better!).
 

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Thanks everyone for he helpful suggestions. I know that he has the potential to be a great dog - consulted a different trainer this weekend who explained, based on Archer's body language and behaviors, that he has a strong Alpha instinct and we have to always be standing when we discipline him and roll him on his back when he gets crazy.

Has anyone tried one of those citronella collars for barking? His new thing is barking in his crate when we put him in there to go to bed. We will seriously be evicted if he doesn't quiet down while people sleep.

To answer some question, yes, he is neutered - the breeder neutered him actually before we even took him home.
 

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Hello, I am new to the forum and have found lots of helpful info. My puppy, Archer, is a 16 week old terror. We got him at 8 weeks from a highly reputable breeder and did lots of research/preparation before his arrival. We've been attending puppy kindergarten for a few weeks and he also goes to the dog park and socializes at play group (now that he is fully vaccinated).

He is smart and has taken to basic training (potty training, sleep/crate training, basic commands, ect...) extremely well. However, he is a horrible biter. I say bite, because this has gone beyond puppy nipping. He actually jumped up and bit my SO's earlobe last night while we were watching TV, tearing it. He has destroyed tons of clothes and left us bruised and bleeding on many occasions. He also snarls and barks when he does this. His tail is wagging, so we initially expected he was just playing.

Here are the corrective strategies we've already tried to no avail:
1. yelping/wincing like another dog.
2. Stopping and shouting at him, no, bad, uh-uh, ect...
3. Turning our backs/shunning him. This does not deter him - instead he bites whatever body part is closest
4. Spray bottle - likes water, is not deterred.
5. Distracting/redirecting with a chew toy - he drops the toy and goes back for us. We try to distract with a squeeky toy to get him to let go of our pants or hands and he is so crazed, he can't be distracted with the noise.
6. time outs - we designated a time out space and put him in there for 1-2 minutes after he starts biting. He has learned that we will only take him out when he's calm. So we put him in and he immediately calms himself. The second we take him out he starts biting again.
7. The pet corrector - air horn/hissing type thing from Petco our trainer recommended. He stops what he's doing and then immediately starts back up. We try to engage him with a toy when he's distracted but he won't do it.
8. Pick him up off the floor or roll him on his back and hold him down until he submits. This seems to make him crazier.



He is being exercised. After work each day, the three of us go for a walk - usually 2-4 miles. He has all sorts of engaging toys and is walked every 3 hours throughout the workday. He also goes to the dog park and playgroups. He socializes at puppy kindergarten class on Saturdays, and every Sunday we take him to my in-laws for a couple of hours to play with their dogs.


The biting/snarling/barking is getting out of control. He is growing rapidly at a rate of 1-2lbs a week and it is getting more difficult for me to physically restrain/control him. I have read a number of books and consulted a variety of sources on how to deal with this. I understand he is so young we need
Thanks everyone for he helpful suggestions. I know that he has the potential to be a great dog - consulted a different trainer this weekend who explained, based on Archer's body language and behaviors, that he has a strong Alpha instinct and we have to always be standing when we discipline him and roll him on his back when he gets crazy.

Has anyone tried one of those citronella collars for barking? His new thing is barking in his crate when we put him in there to go to bed. We will seriously be evicted if he doesn't quiet down while people sleep.

To answer some question, yes, he is neutered - the breeder neutered him actually before we even took him home.
to have some patience, but I also understand that this is a problem that can escalate if not addressed.

We are tearing our hair out and just don't know what to do!


I appreciate any insight you may have.
Did your puppy grow out of the biting phase? Im experiencing something very similar now
 
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