We're Accepting New Patients!
Complete our New Client Form


Biting Puppies

When a puppy nips or bites, their teeth can leave a lasting imprint on your skin. Although biting is often thought to be a teething behavior, nipping, mouthing and biting in young dogs is generally a form of social play. Teething is more likely to involve gnawing or chewing household objects. When dealing with a puppy that is biting you should follow a few of these informative tips.


The most important survival lesson for a puppy to learn is that biting causes pain.

When a puppy’s teeth meet your skin, keep the following in mind.

  • Make sure to provide ample opportunity for play, without biting involved.
  • Respond the same way a puppy playmate might – let out a yip or a high-pitched ouch, it is ok to be dramatic.
  • If you have no success with the ‘ouch’ and the biting continues, immediately stop the play session and leave the room.
  • Do not punish your puppy by hitting, swatting, holding the muzzle or yelling (play biting is natural for a puppy, learning how not to bite is the lesson we hope to teach)
  • Children can only play with a puppy using a toy, this rule also applies to any adult who cannot play reasonably with a puppy.
  • Children need to be supervised and should immediately stop playing with a puppy who attempts to bite or mouth.
  • Use only large soft indestructible toys for you play sessions.
  • Reinforce the sit and stay commands so you can take control during your play sessions.
  • Stop play at the first sign of over arousal.
  • Never allow your puppy to mouth human hair, clothing, scarves. Shoes, pant legs or gloved hands: because these articles cannot feel this inadvertently trains the puppy to bite harder.
  • Our hands, feet, and clothing are not toys.
  • Social play with people should involve controlled games such as retrieving, hide and seek as well as long walks or light jogging.
  • Although wrestling and tug-of-war games can be fun, they may lead to play that is too rough or rambunctious.

The aim is to set your puppy up for success and by setting a few ground rules you should be able to enjoy this very special time with your new family addition.

Written by The Fairmont Animal Hospital Team



cat dog christmas

Christmas Hazards for Pets

Christmas is such a wonderful time of year. However, it can also come with some serious and potentially lethal dangers to our pets. 

Read More
See All Articles