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Teaching bite inhibition to five week old pup

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#1 KrisK


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Posted 01 December 2012 - 08:17 AM

Hi everyone, I know many of you have dealt with pups taken too early for various reasons. This is a 5 week old Shepherd/Husky/.... who knows what dog. It was a single pup that the mother had abandoned. My friend now has this puppy and wants to do things right (I'm not sure, but I think this is the very first puppy she has owned on her own)
I know these next few weeks are critical for the pup. Does anyone have any practical suggestions on how she should work with this pup, especially where bite inhibition is concerned? Of course, all practical suggestions on raising a 5 week old are appreciated.
thank you!

Cricket, BC, mistress of the household
Dusty, the foundling, being as good as his DNA will allow
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Jazz (my heartdog - April 1999-April 2010)
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Brandy (a good dog - 1983-1999)
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#2 rushdoggie


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Posted 01 December 2012 - 03:17 PM

Bite inhibition is learned by a puppy with harmless but painful needle teeth chewing on his pack mates and being reprimanded for biting too hard. This teaches him he has control over his jaws and can regulate the force so that later in life he uses that ability.

So, if there's no dogs around to tech these skills, you need to allow the puppy to wrestle and bite YOU and Yipe and walk away when he gets too rough. Puppy teeth hurt but theres a difference between gnaw and chew and BITE and you can teach it. I only do bitey games with my hands, never other body parts. It works.

Most people are taught never let the puppy put teeth on human skin, and if he has dog friends to teach him bite inhibition that probably works but if he can't practice he won't learn.

Shirley Chong has some good posts in the Keepers section of her website.

I had a small dog with great bite inhibition who once bit my husband (long story, he was startled awake and old and deaf and I had just started seriously dating my husband who returned from a trip late at night and came directly to see me, so when this man came in our house and startled him while he was sleeping on my bed protecting me he flew up to protect me) and left perfect little tooth shaped dents in DH's forearm but no broken skin. DH said it hurt! but he didn't bite with more force than was needed.

"one dog shy of a crazy dog lady..."


#3 bcnewe2


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Posted 01 December 2012 - 07:53 PM

It is so hard to raise a well adjusted puppy at that age. You really need to have it interact with other kind hearted dogs. One of my dogs is a dog who was raised from that age with no littermates or momma. He has great bite inhibition (used the above method) but he is dog aggressive and I think it came from being mostly an only dog. In our case that was our biggest issue.
Tell your friend good luck. its a hard one!
Kristen The world is a magical place...   

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