This is vital if you hope to eventually use your German Shepherd for protection training.
This is the EXACT method they learn with their brothers and sisters. I learned it by closely watching 26 puppies grow up together over the course of 3 litters.
- When the puppy bites down on your skin, whine like a puppy until they let go. Don’t scream, but let out a high pitched howl. Like “Owwwwwwowoowwwwwwwwww”… Do NOT move your hand, leave it right in their mouth nice and limp until they let go.You are now speaking puppy, and they just learned that bite was too hard.
- They are going to bite you again. The next time they bite, they will almost definitely bite down with less strength. If the last bite was a 10, the next bite will be a 9. When they bite and it is too hard, yelp again. “Owwwwww-owwwww” until they let go.
- Repeat this process. It may last up to 7 days. At the end of it, the puppy will understand that human skin has a significantly lower threshold for pain than their rough and tough brothers and sisters.
This is the PRECISE method they have used on their brothers and sisters and mom their entire life and how they communicate. I have observed it on hundreds of occasions.
Puppy biting women and children
My skin is a bit thicker than my wife’s or my kid’s skin, especially the kids who seem to have soft, sensitive skin. This training method can be very difficult with small children. If your kids are over the age of 6, go ahead and practice with them BEFORE puppy introduction. Bite on their hand and teach them to react properly if needed.
Why this method is important
If you smack your puppy they will probably stop biting you right away. But, they will then associate biting people as a bad thing. Do you want your puppy to be able to bite people some day?
I would rather have a dog who understands right from wrong and comprehends the power of their teeth than a dog who is afraid of people. Fear is a terrible problem to have in a German Shepherd. In fact, most dogs who grow up to bite or attack people do so out of fear.
Your vet or trainer is wrong
Anyone who disagrees with this method may indeed have an effective method but they have clearly not spent time with puppies who were developing in the 4-8week old range. If someone says this method does not work, they are wrong, pure and simple.
All of the other training articles on this website are authored by a certified dog trainer. But not this one – I wanted to write it myself.
Smacking your puppy or clenching it’s mouth shut
If you hit a puppy they’ll have no idea why you hit them. They’ll just think human = angry. Sure, maybe it will work and they’ll quit biting you. But do not expect this dog to ever protect you in the future. Dogs are not people and usually if you are treating a dog like a person you’re doing it wrong.