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Help with aggressive puppy

Discussion in 'Dog Training and Behaviour' started by Sinto86, Jan 26, 2020.


  1. Sinto86

    Sinto86 PetForums Newbie

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    Hi there, I have a 12 week old male Cockapoo and his biting is terrible, he has drawn blood numerous times and he cannot settle in the living room in the evening - he gets what appears to be aggressive, sometimes lunging / barking / pouncing and hard bites. Tonight he gripped my poor Mum’s arm and wouldn’t let go - created a really deep bite and drew blood. Then when I try to pick him up he hides under a table and I have to put a treat on the floor just to lift him up whereby he thrashes around and really tries to bite me loads (but no the nipping type, actual bites) until I put him into his pen for a time out. Sometimes I have to hold him in a headlock! I’ve never ever been aggressive towards him.
    I’m worried he’s becoming aggressive (it’s definitely worse in the evening - he’s fine in the day - apart from the nipping).
    Any help would be massively appreciated - it’s my first pup!
     
  2. kittih

    kittih PetForums VIP

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    Hi,

    Welcome to the forum. Your pup isnt being aggressive. The nipping and biting is your pups way of exploring the world, testing boundaries and a way of channelling excitement or anxiety.

    Have a read of the puppy support thread sticky as lots of people have experienced the same issues and have lots of advice.

    Some pups can be horrible land crocodiles. They do grow out of it with the right training and consitent encouragement but I appreciate coping with a bitey pup isnt pleasant.

    Dogs quite often have a mad hour or so in the evening. It is commonly called zoomies and even some of our older members (dogs not humans :) ) still do this. Also when pups are tired, like human toddlers, they can become hyperactive and bitey. Putting them somewhere in a quiet safe space like a crate or xpen with a chew can help.

    Also take a look at kikopup on YouTube and positively.com for more advice and tips.
     
    LinznMilly, Lurcherlad and Torin. like this.
  3. Billbailey

    Billbailey Banned

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    I agree, that sounds like a bout of evening madness to me. Happens to a lot of dogs. Mine is about 5 and he still gets the zoomies when the sun goes down.

    Your puppy isn't doing it deliberately, it's just what puppies do. And it's always worse when they are over-excited and over-stimulated. I agree that you should put him somewhere quiet with something to chew and just ignore him until he calms down.
     
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  4. Jason25

    Jason25 PetForums Senior

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    Getting the dog in a headlock :Facepalm:Hilarious

    When your pup starts biting don't bother picking him up, trying to get him from under the table etc, just leave the room and shut the door behind you.

    If you say 'ouch' when it's biting, see if it's making him more excitable, my staffy loved the reaction lol.

    Maybe invest in a toy called a "kong" you fill them with all sorts and dogs love them, you can use this to settle him :D

    This is all normal behaviour by the way so try not to let it get you down (easier said than done I had a nippy pup until it lost its puppy teeth :Hilarious
    )

    Good luck :D
     
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  5. lullabydream

    lullabydream PetForums VIP

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    This.. Especially as he's running away going under the table, he is getting hand shy and being picked up touched isn't positive for him. All touch needs to be positive. If you carry on like this chasing to pick him up, it will extend to a lot of things. You rarely should be picking a puppy up, you should be training a puppy to do what you want to ask.
    Your puppy will also associate the play pen as a negative place where you want it to be safe and secure
     
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  6. Sinto86

    Sinto86 PetForums Newbie

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    I totally understand the constant nipping and biting and the fact he’s having a mad hour but last night he literally took hold off my mum’s arm and held her. He’s nipped me numerous times but never done that.
    I’m trying to get him used to being in the living room (he is normally in the kitchen and calm there) but everytime he comes downstairs he goes mental.
     
  7. Billbailey

    Billbailey Banned

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    Then it does sound like he is becoming hand-shy and you need to stop picking him up. An actual bite is him telling you he really doesn't like what you are doing. There's no magic trick, unfortunately, just training. Teach him to come to you so that you don't have to go and get him.
     
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  8. Lurcherlad

    Lurcherlad PetForums VIP

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    Maybe he’s going OTT when he joins the family because he’s on his own too much?

    I’d be inclined to have him with the family most of the time so it’s not so stimulating and if he starts being nippy, just leave the room calmly (a baby gate is useful so he’s not shut away) then ho back in once he calms down.

    Be consistent and he’ll learn that OTT stops the interaction/game etc.

    He needs to learn to settle with you all around. A house line helps maintain control/boundaries but removes the need to handle him or pick him up (which actually ramps up excitement or causes anxiety/frustration.

    Invest in rag toys to divert his teeth and filled kongs to occupy him when settling.
     
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  9. Sinto86

    Sinto86 PetForums Newbie

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    oh he’s never on his own (except for when asleep). He comes to work with me 3 days a week and sleeps at my feet. If anything, he needs to learn to be left alone more!

     
  10. Boxer123

    Boxer123 PetForums VIP

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    My boy was awful for biting he would hang off me hang off my older dogs neck. It does pass. Good advice above I used kongs and would walk out the room I also dimmed the lights in the evening trying to create calm.
     
    Lurcherlad likes this.
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