How Do I Get My Dog to Stop Biting?

My dad has a little boston terrier named Marvin Pibbs.(-:
hes very cute, trained, overall a very good dog, but when we're taking him for a walk, he feels the need to bite strangers. also, when me and my little brother are wrestling, or my dads tickling one of us or something, the dog jumps in and starts nipping at everyone…hes broken the skin on us a few times. theres going to be a baby in the house in the next year, and we're afraid of what will happen with the dog. My dad says he will get rid of him if he bites again. What can i do to stop the dog from biting?
ps. he just got rescued from an animal shelter less than a month ago.

We had this same problem. I had heard somewhere that this problem develops a lot when the young puppies are separated from their siblings at a young age, therefore they never learn what is acceptable nibbling and what is biting. In the litter when it is biting then the other siblings will make a noise and this tells the puppy that this was unacceptable. Well, we always wrestle and play rough with our boston and when she would bite or nip a little too hard we would go "ow" in a high pitched way and back away, then she would stop and we would put our hand back in front and she would instantly back away or nudge with a closed mouth. She has learned and no longer nibbles too hard.

Of course, another way we have curbed other behavior like jumping on people was to spray her with a squirt bottle (not looking at her in the eye so she doesn't realize its us and just knows that this bad behavior bring this, etc.). This only took three to four times and she has completely stopped this behavior.

Good luck!!!

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  • oldmansid

    Pull all its teeth
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  • Jeonpaolo B

    Pet him around his neck
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  • msims52

    I have a yellow lab, about 70 pounds, who would also 'bite' when playing. He was 1.5 already when we adopted him. When he would start to bite I would grab the top part of his mouth, making sure to include his nose, and hold tight. He hates it so much, and he no longer bites. A dog's nose is very sensitive so this did hurt him, but he learned to stop biting. Also, you need to stop playing rough around him for a time, to him y'all are playing and he is just joining in and doing what a dog does when they play. I am not that big, either. Female with small hands. If I can do it, so can you. Good luck.
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  • a10cowgirl

    This is not difficult. Correct him when he puts his mouth on you. Grab the scruff of his neck, give him a shake or two and tell him "NO", "OFF" or something that you want to use. Be stern when you use the command. Look him in the eye. Mother dogs do this to correct their puppies when they bite. It's very effective. You MUST be consistent and persistent. Praise, praise, praise when he does not have his mouth on you.

    Walking him is a different story. Use a choke collar and a leash to walk him. Make sure the choke collar is put on his neck the correct way. Yes, there is a right way and a wrong way to put these collars on. With the dog sitting on your left side, place the collar over the head so the end where the the leash attaches is coming towards you over the neck, not under. You will see when you put it on if you follow these instructions.

    Use a "popping" action to keep his attention and make him mind. Head collars don't work well on Bostons because of the shape of the face. First of all, don't let him approach people he doesn't know. Keep him restrained on the leash. Start using this collar and leash to train him to sit and stay. "NO" works wonderful also. Be stern, consistent, and persistent. Don't let him get away with this one time. Praise, praise, praise him when he does what you ask him to do.

    Here's a website that provides information as to why dogs mouth humans.

    http://www.puplife.com/dogcaretips/dog-door-greeting3.html
    References :
    Professional dog trainer since 1964, groomer, handler, breeder, conformation and obedience judge, dog book author.

  • Earena

    We had this same problem. I had heard somewhere that this problem develops a lot when the young puppies are separated from their siblings at a young age, therefore they never learn what is acceptable nibbling and what is biting. In the litter when it is biting then the other siblings will make a noise and this tells the puppy that this was unacceptable. Well, we always wrestle and play rough with our boston and when she would bite or nip a little too hard we would go "ow" in a high pitched way and back away, then she would stop and we would put our hand back in front and she would instantly back away or nudge with a closed mouth. She has learned and no longer nibbles too hard.

    Of course, another way we have curbed other behavior like jumping on people was to spray her with a squirt bottle (not looking at her in the eye so she doesn't realize its us and just knows that this bad behavior bring this, etc.). This only took three to four times and she has completely stopped this behavior.

    Good luck!!!
    References :