Everyone who has had a puppy in the house knows how troublesome and annoying nipping and biting can be, but when does it turn from annoying to dangerous?  Below are some tips on how to teach your puppy not to bite and how to keep it from happening in the future.

  • First, “biting” and “nipping” are two different actions.  “Nipping” is normal for a puppy because they are trying to explore their surroundings and usually do that with their nose and mouth.  While nipping is normal, biting is not.  “Biting” is when nipping turns into a more aggressive action and is used when a puppy lashes out against his surroundings.
  • Aggression in small breeds, including Yorkie puppies, can be pretty typical and expected but it doesn’t mean it is ok and should be ignored and excused.  Rage is never acceptable in a puppy and shouldn’t be ignored by the owner or family members.  Some puppies are born with social tendencies and can become afraid or aggressive towards other people and pets, but that doesn’t mean it should be excused.
  • Biting is an act of extreme aggression and should be treated as soon as the issue arises.  First, try to determine when and why the puppy is becoming upset in the first place.  Maybe they don’t like a certain person around them or are fearful of other puppies or pets.  If you can determine this right away, it can keep your Yorkie puppy calm and out of situations where they lash out and become aggressive.
  • Many times, smaller breeds bite because they are trying to assert their dominance and don’t want to be thought of as weak.  You’ve probably heard of the term “small dog syndrome”.  Well in this case, it is true.  Many smaller breeds think they are really a large dog and think they can boss other puppies, especially smaller puppies around.
  • One way to discipline your dog is to not hit them or yell.  Keep calm and stern, explain to them that it is wrong and that you don’t want them biting.  Try calming techniques and train them to be calm and not aggressive with treats and positive reinforcement.  Of course you don’t want to reward them with bad behavior, but if they do listen then it’s a good idea to reward them.
  • Be sure to let your Yorkie puppy know you are in control and they need to listen to you and your commands.  If they respect your dominance and power, they will be more likely to listen and obey your commands, the first time!
When Nipping Turns to Biting!