Two year old springer spaniel biting and mouthing.

by Aimee

I have a springer who is nearly two years old but still mouthing when excited and will bite if try and brush her.

I can run my hands all over her without her being distressed however if I get a towel to wipe her feet or the brush out to groom her she backs off and starts snaping at me. She never bites really hard and doesn't break the skin but I am worried it will get harder.

She has always mouthed us even as a puppy and I have done the high pitched scream (as advised when she was a puppy- but that just makes her excited and then she does it even more!) I am attending obedience classes and she has mouthed/biten me during a class when I was trying to get her to lie down. The trainer advised grabbing her by the face & staring at her, which does work, until I let her go and then she try to bite me again. I am worried that this behaviour will get worse and it is spoiling time that we spend together. Any advice gratefully received. Thank you

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Sep 02, 2015
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Dec 31, 2010
Springer biting when brushed
by: Patti

I am a clicker trainer with GSLTC.
You may want to try some classic conditioning with your pup.
You will need a clicker and treats to do this.
First get several treats in your hand and don't ask your dog to do anything. Simply click and then treat. Do this several times and do a few sessions of this. This will teach the pup that every time they hear a click, the treat is coming. They catch on quick. Then ask your dog to do something they know like sit. When their butt hits the floor, click and then treat. The click is a promise for a treat. so if you click at the wrong time, you still have to treat so you don't break your promise. When the pup is getting it bring out the brush and lay it on the floor. When they look at it,click and treat. Go slow and gradually ask for more. Try to get her to sniff or touch the brush with their nose while the brush is still on the floor. If they start barking at or biting the brush no click. Only click for good behavior. Gradually do the same with the brush in your hand. Soon the pup will be thrilled to see the brush as it means there is a chance to earn a treat. It may be slow at first, but you should soon be able to get her to let you brush her. You may want to give her a toy to chew on while attempting to brush her at first. There is a great book we use to teach our students clicker training. It is easy reading with great illustrations. It's called Clicking with your Dog by Peggy Tillman.
I hope this helps. If you have any questions post back and I will try to help. Good luck and happy clicking!

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