An estimated 4.4 million people in the United States suffer a dog bite every single year. Among these, about 885,000 people require medical care in order to treat the wound they suffered following the bite. Furthermore, hospital-related costs alone for treating wounds caused by a dog bite in the country calculates to over $100 million in expenses every year.
The problem starts from the time at which the dog is a puppy. You just got your Rottweiler puppy and considered the fact that he or she bites you while you are playing harmless fun. There are times when the biting gets a little rough – but you still consider this just part of their play. Unfortunately, leaving the biting without taking the right actions can cause your Rottweiler puppy to grow up into a dog that thinks biting is okay.
In this guide, you will learn how to stop a Rottweiler puppy from biting. We will also consider why your puppy might be keen on biting you and talk about a few things that you need to avoid.
Why Do Rottweiler Puppies Bite?
Biting among puppies is actually a rather common issue that a lot of people have. This problem is not only common in Rottweiler puppies, but can be an issue faced with any breed of dog.
A puppy that bites may not seem like a concern right now – maybe their teeth are still coming out, and the biting does not cause damage to your skin. Unfortunately, once they have their adult teeth, the biting can be more damaging – and even cause you to suffer an injury.
A thorough understanding of why puppies bite is important. These potential causes behind a biting Rottweiler puppy will educate you on the reasons you need to look into it. By identifying the cause of biting in your own puppy, you will know what actions to take to stop the behavior.
Your Puppy Could Be Teething
When it comes to a Rottweiler puppy that bites, one of the very first factors that you will need to consider is whether or not your dog is going through the teething process. Among puppies, teething is generally considered the most common reason for biting.
During this time in a puppy’s life, they are exploring the world. They are also joining social life – with both humans and other dogs, as well as other animals if you have any around the house.
Biting tends to happen due to these exciting factors that are happening in the puppy’s life. When they get excited, they could end up biting. In such a scenario, there will be no underlying factor like aggression behind the biting behavior.
The biting is also a way of the puppy getting a better grip on the strength of their jaw and bite. These are all new to them.
Another potential reason might be due to the irritation and swelling, as well as pain, that the puppy is experiencing in their jaw. It is known that puppies tend to bite much more while they are teething. If the puppy does not have access to toys and interacts with you, then your hands might become the closest target for them to relieve some of the pressure they feel in their mouth. Biting helps control the irritation that occurs in the puppy’s gums too.
(Check out the best teething toys for german shepherd puppies.)
Your Puppy Might Be Stressed Or Anxious
Stress is more common among puppies than many people think. If your puppy is biting you, then you need to consider stress as a potential cause behind this behavior.
Puppies are often stressed, and may also feel anxious when they enter a new environment. If you recently got your Rottweiler puppy, then there is a good chance that they are still feeling anxious.
After all, the puppy grew fond of its mother and was taken away from them, and put into a new environment. You need to give your puppy some time to adapt to the new situation that he or she has entered.
Consider looking for signs of anxiety in your puppy. If things move too quickly for the puppy, they may go from simply feeling a little anxious about developing a more serious level of anxiety.
One particular sign to look out for is isolation. When a puppy feels anxious, they may try to hide underneath the bed or other areas where they may feel isolated from the other animals in the house, as well as from you and the rest of the family.
Also, consider digestive troubles and panting possible signs of anxiety and stress in your puppy.
If you do notice these signs, then you might be moving too fast for your Rottweiler puppy. Try to take a step back and allow them some space. Give your puppy an opportunity to be alone when they feel like it – just know where to draw the line. Allowing your puppy to completely isolate themselves from you and other people in the house could lead to further problems down the line.
Consider A Medical Side To Biting Too
While most cases of a Rottweiler puppy biting relate to either teething or the anxiety they experience when they are new to your house, there might be cases where a medical problem contributes to the behavior too. This can be the case if the puppy has a certain illness or if they were injured somehow.
A check-up at the vet can definitely be helpful. In fact, you will need to take your puppy to the vet for vaccinations and deworming. When you take your puppy to the vet, ask the vet to do a full check-up – especially during the very first visit after you get your puppy.
The vet will be able to feel for any abnormalities in your puppy’s body. They will also be able to determine if there are problems with the puppy’s heart or other potential illnesses that you should be concerned about.
How To Stop A Rottweiler Puppy Biting?
You are in luck if you’re looking at how to stop a Rottweiler puppy biting. The reason being that training a dog is significantly easier when done from a younger age.
Since your Rottweiler is still a puppy, implementing training routines to get them to stop biting should be much easier – particularly when you compare this process to training an adult Rottweiler.
You want to start this process slowly. Consider the basics first – housebreak your puppy and make sure they know that they are supposed to use the outdoors as a toilet. See if you can teach your puppy to sit.
While these may all seem like relatively straightforward commands, it does lay a foundation for your puppy in terms of behavior and training.
Once you have the basics done, you can start to introduce new verbal commands to your puppy.
(If you haven’t started training your Rottweiler puppy, then now is the perfect time to do so. A strong training course like Brain Training For Dogs is going to be perfect for a new puppy.
Instead of using negative training techniques, you’ll get to use positive reinforcement to teach your pup how to behave! Which is a lot more fun for both of you!
(Read an in-depth review of Brain Training For Dogs.)
The High-Pitch No
When it comes to behavior training, you need to learn one important thing – and that is the high-pitch no. You could choose another word or even just make a sound instead of giving a verbal command – as long as you do it in a high pitch.
This action should be your go-to verbal command whenever your puppy bites. When you play with your puppy, and he or she bites you, use the command. The high-pitch will startle the puppy, and they will usually let go of your hand immediately.
You can implement this for any inappropriate behavior that they do. The puppy will eventually associate those actions with the negative effect of that high-pitch sound you make – and understand that it is something they should not be doing.
Use Toys, Not Your Hands
You want your puppy to stop biting you – which means you should stop giving them the opportunity to do so. If you continue to use your hands when playing with your puppy, you are just making them more likely to bite you.
Get lots of toys for your Rottweiler puppy and keep these toys in different areas of the house. Every time you decide to play with your puppy, reach for a nearby toy or two. Use the toys when playing instead of your hands. This will encourage them to go to the toys when they bite.
Carry Treats With You
Treating your dog is a great way of creating a positive association with certain actions. Always have some treats with you while training your puppy.
Treats are for scenarios where your dog does something that can be considered good behavior. Such as if your puppy bites you and you give off a high-pitch sound. If they let go, give them a treat!
What To Avoid Doing
You should now realize the steps that need to be taken in order to get your Rottweiler puppy to stop biting. While these are all important points, there are also a few things that you need to avoid.
Inappropriate actions from your side can be just as bad as not implementing the steps needed to stop a puppy from biting.
To help you avoid promoting biting or perhaps causing aggressive behavior in your Rottweiler, take a closer look at the factors that we discuss below. These are the actions that you want to avoid taking.
Do Not Allow Biting
The first one is quite obvious – do not allow your Rottweiler puppy to bite you or any person it comes into contact with. Sure, this may seem like a simple and even obvious move, but many people allow their dog to bite without realizing the behavior that they are promoting.
Consider a scenario where you are playing with your dog. You do not have toys with you, so you decide to play with your hands. Your puppy is sure to nibble at the subject that they are playing with – and when toys are not around, the “subject” would be your hands.
Unfortunately, when you allow this type of behavior, it means you are actually encouraging your puppy to bite. Sure, it may be helpful in some cases to allow your puppy to slightly gnaw on your hand and then use a verbal command if they do bite, but when you do not stop them at the point where gnawing becomes biting, then you are telling them it is okay to bite – and they will grow up into an adult Rottweiler with this thought in mind.
With this in mind, always try to keep toys nearby when you are playing with your puppy. This way, you can grab toys when they start to bite.
This may not only be a good way of showing your dog what behavior you expect from them but can also help to prevent potential injuries that you may suffer if the puppy decides to bite too hard.
Yelling is something that just too many people do when they try to discipline a dog. The dog bites you, and you start to yell at them. It is quite an unfortunate action – especially when trying to train a puppy.
Remember that the puppy is still new to the world, and they are learning things every single day. Biting can come as a natural way for them to cope with teething. Sometimes, the puppy may also simply get excited when you are playing with them.
When teething is the problem, you need to consider ways to help your Rottweiler puppy cope with these symptoms. Yelling surely isn’t going to help your dog experience relief in the pain and discomfort that comes with erupting teeth.
If your dog gets too excited and starts to bite – perhaps you are using your hands instead of a toy. Putting your hand in your dog’s mouth is actually encouraging them to bite you.
Instead of yelling at your dog for biting you, consider your own actions too – and switch out your hands for a couple of toys instead.
Do Not Abuse Your Dog
Regardless of how you look at it – hitting your dog is abusive behavior. Abusing your dog is not going to solve the problem. While hitting your dog may cause them to back off temporarily, this will cause your Rottweiler puppy to turn into an aggressive dog.
When you are physically violent with your dog, it will cause them to develop anxiety. The dog’s stress levels will also increase significantly.
Always consider your actions. When you become angry, your dog will pick up on your emotions. If you hit your dog, you will not only cause them to experience pain, but you will make them fear you. In turn, your dog may end up trying to protect himself or herself from you – and this may come in the form of aggression and more serious biting.
Never Reward Biting, Growling, Or Any Other Aggressive Behavior
Rewards, with a focus on factors like giving your dog a treat or praising them, is something that needs to form part of your training routine. When you reward your dog, it means you are associating a certain behavior or action with something positive – the positive factors, in this case, would be the praising, petting, hugging, or treats that you offer them.
While rewarding good behavior is essential, some people implement their reward system at the wrong times. Unfortunately, this can cause problems. Instead of telling your dog that something they did was wrong, you are encouraging them to perform that action again.
Perhaps your dog bites you while you are playing. Instead of implementing the action needed to tell them that the behavior was inappropriate, you end up giving them a treat – or perhaps you simply continue playing with them. Remember that playing with your dog is often seen as a reward too!
This action tells your puppy that the biting was okay – they can do it again. You have no problem with this particular behavior.
Carefully consider when you give your dog a reward. The only reward for good behavior. If your puppy bites you and you give a high-pitched sound, and they back off – then it would be an appropriate time for a reward.
A Rottweiler puppy that bites might not seem like a serious problem during the dog’s earlier years, but failure to attend to the issue can cause something more severe to develop.
A biting dog needs to be taken seriously, regardless of their age. Understand why your puppy might be biting and then learn how to stop a Rottweiler puppy from biting. Implement these actions while your dog is still a puppy to avoid an adult dog that may cause serious injury to yourself, as well as your family and friends.
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