Chewing allows puppies to explore and better understand their environment. For instance, a puppy might chew on their siblings to test their strength. They can also display their affection and their desire to play through chewing.
With that being said, you should not let your puppy chew on you, even if they are doing so lightly. If you let your puppy chew on you, what started off as a little nip can become a painful bite.
What should I do if my puppy bites me?
After only six weeks, puppies already have 28 small teeth. While they are not big enough to leave serious wounds, if they are not taught to keep their teeth to themselves, they could cause serious damage in the future.
For harmonious cohabitation, it is important to teach your dog not to bite.
Teaching your dog not to bite humans
It is common for puppies to chew on each other to play or test their strength. If one puppy bites too hard, the other puppy will react and bite back or stop playing altogether. Through this, puppies learn to better control their strength.
When you adopt a puppy, it is very important to teach them to stop biting, no matter the breed.
During playtime, if your puppy bites you, stop playing. In addition to this, you can say "ouch" or "no". Then, ignore your puppy for a small amount of time. If your puppy bites you again when you go back to playing, repeat the same thing and leave the room. If a young child is playing with your puppy, keep an eye on them. For a child that is older, explain to them how to stop playing if your puppy bites. All members of the family need to be on the same page.
For your puppy to learn, you need to be consistent and act the same way every time. Do not punish them or be violent.
My puppy chews on everything
Protect your belongings
Has your puppy been chewing on your shoes, the couch, or everything within their reach? A puppy's teeth develops during the first few months of their life. Their permanent teeth come in around six months. During this phase, they need to relieve themselves. They chew on everything to relieve their gum pain.
To protect your favorite items (and your shoes), the first thing you need to do is get everything out of your puppy's reach. Do not leave anything lying around. You can also move things around so that your puppy does not have access to cables or other wires. Accidents can happen if these situations are not prevented.
It is sometimes difficult to hide everything. If you catch your puppy chewing on something, be sure to say something like "stop", "let go" or "no" in a firm tone. If your puppy lets go of the object, you can praise them. Thereafter, you can use "let go" every time your puppy is interested in chewing on something that they are not allowed to chew on.
If you find an object that was ruined by your puppy without catching them in the act, it is useless to punish them. Your puppy will not understand why you are frustrated with them.
Provide your dog with plenty of toys
Do not hesitate to buy toys and other objects for your puppy to chew on to their heart's content.
There are so many toys that are designed specifically for your furry friend to chew on, such as rubber bones, rope, and large treats. Plus, they're often effective in keeping teeth healthy and gums strong.
If your puppy starts to chew on something, you can tell them to stop and give them a toy to chew on instead.
Most importantly, be patient and consistent with your puppy. They cannot learn everything right away. Some things can take weeks to understand—even months.
Originally written in French by Agathe Warlop (Yummypets) and translated by Jennifer Eubank (Yummypets).