Help with biting!


New member
Hi everyone I just have a question about biting. My newf baby is just over 11 months and was nippy as a pup. Note: I am basing this on previously owing another breed; this is my second dog and first newf so I do not know if my comparison is skewed as my previous dog was a beagle and never once bit/nipped even as a puppy).

I would say my Riley has quite improved from the time I got her (8 weeks) until now however there are some instances where her biting is quite hard and I cannot find any helpful resources.

The major situation happens when I take her for leash walks. Whenever a leash walk is coming to an end (we are going in the direction of home) she will get very upset and do the following: bite at the leash, grab the leash in her mouth, pull the leash in the opposite direction and growl, jump up and bite at my hand, repeatedly try to nip at my hand, grab my arm clothing in her mouth and try to shake it (sometimes catching my skin)- growl, and plop on the ground to try and stop me from continuing to walk in the direction of home (the biting is the most frequent).

The biting is not to the extent that it will break the skin (bleed) but it is close and quite painful.

My failed attempts at fixing this so far are as follows:

1. Take her for long walks 1-2 hours
2. Bring delicious treats so when the walk is ending and she starts this biting I can do commands with her along the way to get her attention and focus
3. Take her on new routes (however when she has gone on one new route once she knows by the second time the route and starts the biting).

I am sure there is a creative solution that I have yet to discover. I have seen her improvements with the nipping in general. She is normally a gentle dog e.g. when I take her to the fenced dog park she is so loved by both pets and parents and plays very nicely with all the other dogs. She does not behave with me like this at the dog park. The problem is that I cannot reasonable take her to the dog park everyday in our great Canadian winter as it gets dark early and is scary to go there. I would like to be able to take her on leash walks without being hurt like this.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated! I should also note that my puppy is almost the same size as me. My boyfriend who is larger than both her and I has advised that this does not occur when he walks her but I am her primary walker.

Note: the other instances where she uses her mouth but less serious are: 1. when my bestfriend watches a movie with me in my bed my Riley will come and start gnawing at my bestfriend constantly (i was thinking this might be a territorial thing as Riley sleeps in the bed with my boyfriend and I

2. Since the winter has come and I have not been going out in the yard as much as the summer - Whenever I go in the yard Riley will start the same type of biting as the walk (I was thinking this was also a territorial thing and she may think the yard is hers) - in the summertime when she would be in the yard long and I came outside she would also run at full speed and pounce at me and 3. When she wants to be pet/is being petted she will start gnawing at whoever is petting her.

Thanks again!
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Jager's Mom

New member
Here are some reasons why dogs chew:
• Teething puppies try to relieve pain.
• Puppies chew to explore their environment, just like babies putting everything in their mouths. Chewing can become a lifelong habit that is very pleasurable for the dog.
• The repetitious motion of chewing can be soothing to an anxious dog.
• Chewing helps remove plaque, and it’s good for the health of your dog’s teeth and gums, especially if you are feeding soft food. Chewing can help sweeten his breath.
• It’s a way to get attention from the owner if the owner is present.

The dog is not chewing your good things because he is angry with you or getting even with you. Chewing the wrong objects can be frustrating for you and dangerous or fatal for the dog. Choking, intestinal blockage, and poisoning from ingesting medicine or cleaning goods can occur. While you are teaching your dog to chew only approved items, make sure no chew hazards are within reach. Bored dogs often chew for something to do. Give them something better to do. Both puppies and older dogs should have lots of safe doggy chew toys. Give a teething pup something cool and hard to help him get rid of his little puppy teeth. Twist some clean pieces of old toweling, soak them in water and freeze them into interesting shapes. The coldness will soothe his swollen gums. Thin vinyl toys with squeakers might be ok for games with you, but if left alone, the dog could chew it up in no time and perhaps choke. Beware of toys that are small enough to become lodged in the dog’s throat. Kongs, Nylabones, and hollow bone toys from the pet shop can be stuffed, smeared with cheese or something else to interest the dog. Build interest in the stuffed pacifier. Stuff it, but don’t give it to the dog at first. Admire it, put it up on the counter. Smell it, pretend to eat it, and finally give it over. You may want 2 or 3 of these wonderful toys. They can be washed with a bottle brush and soapy water. You can even place them in a dishwasher or clothes washer. Have enough toys that you can rotate them, putting down “new” ones every day. Stay away from real bones, raw or cooked, and be very careful with rawhide chews. Some dogs will eat too much. When it expands in their stomach they become distressed. Tennis balls can be a problem too. Some dogs are experts at peeling the covering, and then choking on it. Other dogs have been known to swallow them.

Are you paying attention to the behavior you want? If the dog is good, do you ignore her? If she starts chewing, does she get the family’s attention – “Tippy, no! Bad girl! Stop it!”

Anticipate a chewing problem. As a puppy, get the dog “hooked” on appropriate chew toys. The pup must learn to discriminate.


The pup’s mother and littermates have done much to teach bite inhibition by immediate correction when the pup bit too hard in play. Some pups understand if you say “ouch” very loudly. Even better, yelp loudly like a puppy would when bitten. You can also try abruptly leaving the area. The idea is to convey that you don’t want to play with him anymore. At least turn your head away and tuck your hands under your crossed arms. Wait. He will probably get worse while he is figuring out that you do not respond. Be patient. Most dogs will give up and go away. If you give in and look at him, talk to him, jump, or otherwise give attention, your dog has just learned to play the lottery.


Active member
I would try redirection with a toy though if she's a clever dog give her mental exercises as well.

Some dogs are born to work and if there's no medical issues like sore mouth then try working her brain as well as her body.

If she gets territorial on the sofa or bed push her off until she learns to behave.

She may be trying to get one over on you at times


New member
It seemed only right that this was my first post. My baby is almost 15 weeks now and oh my, the biting / nipping is real! Jager's Mom, your post did help, thank you. I have tried most of this but I think I am still "engaging" too much when she is biting. She is very high energy and the volume seems to get turned up quickly. I need to really work on quietly turning away and ignoring her. When she is really going at it, it's difficult to do that but I will work on it. I will look for any advice anyone has on this particular issue as it's the major puppy issue we are dealing with.

Thanks and I am going to love being a part of the community - I'm so happy to have found it.