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Hi, I am new to this board and very grateful to the insights you experienced folks have.


My husband and I just purchased a 7 week old (now 8 weeks and a few days)B&W tri, "Louie" so very cute!!


We will be taking some puppy classes in the next two weeks but the issue at hand we have is his nipping on my bathrobe or lower pants bottoms when I take him out to go to the bathroom. Is this a puppy thing or his insticts kicking in. I am firm with him - use one word commands but he continues.


He knows how to sit, come and we are working on down; he knows his name.


My 2 kids (13 y.o. boy and 9 y.o. girl) are great with him and he is great with them but again he nips them. I have taught them to be firm with him and not to run away.


My plan is to do trail running with him later on when he gets older and I need to stop this nipping ASAP. When I crouch down and stare at him he stops - is this the right thing to do?


SOS guys! We are ignorant at this point.

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Originally posted by di59louie:

...the issue at hand we have is his nipping on my bathrobe or lower pants bottoms when I take him out to go to the bathroom. Is this a puppy thing or his insticts kicking in.

The grabbing the pants leg thing is normal puppy behavior. I know folks who just let them grow out of it to avoid having to correct them constantly (and therefore nag, which is not a good thing), but I have had success just using a drag toy (any toy the pup likes attached to a leash or whatever) so that the pup can grab at that. That way their desire to chase and grab is satisfied, but I don't have a pup hanging on my leg! At this point you can also teach a correction word (ahht!, ah ah!, or no!) and use it. So when the pup grabs you, you give the correction and then substitute the drag toy. This teaches the pup to take a correction and also redirects its attention.


You're smart to instruct the kids not to run from the pup, as that will only help the prey drive to kick in (all dogs have prey drive to some extent) and cause the chasing and nipping to be worse. When the pup grabs them, they should stop, give the correction, and substitute the appropriate toy. It's important that you are completely consistent in your corrections--all of you--or you'll just end up with a confused pup.


Good luck! Oh, and I wouldn't necessarily get down to pup level and stare as it might just trigger the pup to jump at/nip at your face. You can get down onto a pup's level so they aren't as likely to jump up (if you're having problems with the pup jumping up this is one way to stop that as the pup does want to get up near your face), but don't stare as that is considered a "challenge" or an invitation to play in dog speak (e.g., my dogs, both pups and adults, will stare at one another just before launching an "attack" and you don't want your pup misinterpreting your stare to mean "Let's play--jump at me!") and your intent isn't really to challenge the pup or initiate play but to correct it. And for the grabbing the pants leg, you don't need to get down on pup level at all.



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