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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Ruby (9 wks) just started biting out of control when she is outside playing. This usually starts happening when she in her V mode running all over the place. Sometimes it happens when she is just playing fetch. She gets fixated on my legs and feet and lunges at me biting hard. You can't ignore it either because she keeps attacking. I tried a spray bottle and that worked for a second. I closed her mouth and said no bite - that just revs her up more. Today I got a bottle and put coins in it to try to snap her out of it - that worked the first few times and then she went right back after my legs and feet. I put boots on today to protect me because I am getting all bruised up.

I know she is playing but she gets pretty aggressive. She only does this outside when she is out running around the yard. Any ideas to stop this?
 

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This explains Granger. He is 12 weeks old and he gets wild with the nipping. I have tried the ignoring and walking away, the high-pitched yelp, the no bite, and holding his mouth. Those did not work. It only made him bark and get more nippy. What seems to work best is to put him in his crate for a timeout and not letting him out until he is calm. It has worked, but sometimes he just gets bity and barky again. If that's the case, just put him in the crate again. I am very frusturated and it really overshadows the sweet side of the dog (when he's tired and just wants to lay down on your lap). They say it's a vizsla puppy thing, but others say Vizsla can keep their puppy traits for two years. So just hang in there, as so will I.
 

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Don't worry guys. It will definitely pass. It did seem worse in our vizsla than our other dogs (Rosie was VERY persistent about it), but it is a phase all puppies of all breeds go through. If you think about it, play for humans often involves making believe you're grown or imitating what adults do. Play for dogs is the same, except that unlike us, a part of the natural repertoire of dogs--in play or in earnest--is biting and predator-prey type behavior. They think they're just playing, but we think it's really annoying and painful. And I remember how painful and upsetting it was. But yes, as they mature, they do truly stop doing it. We didn't think she ever would, but she finally did. It's tough if you're outside. But in general, the best you can do is to end the fun for her. If you're in the yard, taking her inside for a few minutes and ignoring her until she's calm may be the best you can do. But if you're farther from home, you may have to improvise. You could try turning your back and acting like a tree, making no response good or bad, until she stops. One possible problem with doing what we humans think is something unpleasant or punishing in response is that they often seem to react like, "oh, cool, that can of coins (etc) must be a new part of the fun rough and tumble game we're playing!" At least that was our experience.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks for the responses. We have a trainer for Ruby so I contacted him. He said to stand still and ignore her when she does this. Trying to fix the situation will just egg her on.

I will let you know how this goes.
 

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9-12 weeks is way to young for any type of physical correction, so the best you can do is to either ignore it, or find something else to distract them with.
If you want to have some real fun put a small chew toy on the end of a pole and line and let her chase after that. Work it just like you would as if you were playing with a cat.
Vizslas love feather dusters too. ;)
She will grow out of it eventually.
 

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Is it possibe that the play is too boisterous? Vizsla play with their mouths... The nipping is also a puppy stage due to teething.
A loud 'OUCH' is enough to startle the puppy and stop play. At this point turn your back and ignore. They are intelligent enough to get the message that nipping is not acceptable. Good luck!
 

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Pleased to have found this post! Our 9 week old female won't leave my feet or anything else alone and it is getting a bit tiresome, in particular, as we have 4 young kids to watch at the same time. The older three have worked out how to avoid egging her on but the youngest is nearly 2 and too small to have any effect. Good luck. Will be ignoring as much as possible as your trainer has instructed.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
MoshiMoshi said:
Pleased to have found this post! Our 9 week old female won't leave my feet or anything else alone and it is getting a bit tiresome, in particular, as we have 4 young kids to watch at the same time. The older three have worked out how to avoid egging her on but the youngest is nearly 2 and too small to have any effect. Good luck. Will be ignoring as much as possible as your trainer has instructed.
I am happy to report Ruby no longer does this. She is 16 weeks now and I think it is a combination of maturing and training. Hang in there
 

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Rubyroo - I really hope it is a maturity thing as my puppy is getting even more aggressive now and keeps attacking my feet even when I stand still. To add to that she has started barking too! I know this is all because we have a very assertive dog but it is getting harder to stand still and do nothing as my feet are getting really bitten. I have resorted to time out if it persists and she then calms down and I let her out of her crate again. I hope this is the right thing to do. I will be asking a trainer who is coming today and can hopefully help guide us with our unruly 12 week old! :)
 

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Hello
My pup does this too - I'm so glad to have found this website!!
Our trainer asked us to monitor when it was happening to see if we could predict it so we could prevent it, and it seems that she bites and nips when she is tired - almost her way of saying, 'I've had enough now!'
She has got better but we have also got better at stopping it too.
:)
 

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This is something I learned from volunteering at the Michigan Humane Society -- dogs of all breeds are actually puppies until they are two years old! A saying they have there is "They chew 'til they're two." Then it's like somebody just flipped a switch and they're all grown up. Young dogs are frequently surrendered to the Humane Society because of "behavioral problems" that are not really problems at all, but rather, normal phases of puppy development. The nipping and biting is a phase, and it will pass. I do feel for you, though -- bless your heart! I've only raised one dog from puppyhood, and still remember well how sharp those little baby teeth are!
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
MoshiMoshi said:
Rubyroo - I really hope it is a maturity thing as my puppy is getting even more aggressive now and keeps attacking my feet even when I stand still. To add to that she has started barking too! I know this is all because we have a very assertive dog but it is getting harder to stand still and do nothing as my feet are getting really bitten. I have resorted to time out if it persists and she then calms down and I let her out of her crate again. I hope this is the right thing to do. I will be asking a trainer who is coming today and can hopefully help guide us with our unruly 12 week old! :)
I promise it will get better. Maybe try to keep a toy close by at all times and when she does this redirect her to the toy. You should have seen my legs when Ruby was like this. I was covered in bruises. Now at 18 weeks, she never does this. It seems like something clicked the last few weeks and she us listening more and calming down.
 

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eeyoresfriend said:
and it seems that she bites and nips when she is tired - almost her way of saying, 'I've had enough now!'
Yes, this was our experience too. We used to call it "turning into a werewolf" because it would happen in the evening when both the dog and we were tired. Nothing like trying to relax in the late evening and having a puppy relentlessly biting you with really sharp teeth...I did read one expert article that made just that point--that it is typical of tired or overexcited puppies who have had enough stimulation and need to wind down but don't know how.
 

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Hi, just to add our experience... we are going through the same thing and hope they mature eventually and become majestic, superb dogs.
We noticed, that if we engage in roughhousing with our V. the biting seems to get worse so we keep calm when outside and not run away from him. Chasing him is ok but if he chases us.... Ouch.
Also in the morning there is no biting at all and our time outside is very pleasant but if we go out just around sun set we get to walk with a werewolf 8) so we are extra calm.

Those puppy teeth are soooo sharp .... Ouch..Ouch...time out :'( sorry puppy.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Funny how much they mature. I remember writing this post and wondering when it will get better. Ruby is almost 6 months now and never puts her mouth on us anymore. It took a while but once she got rid of all of those puppy teeth- she is so good now.
 

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Well, I'm coming across this post a little late, as my pup (Oquirrh) was horrible about nipping and I was going crazy. It did pass. I realized I was making it worse because I would get frustrated or feel helpless when he was "attacking." Once I recognized the things that made him get rowdy, I could stop it before it started. I also realized that anytime I tried to move him off me and I bent over and had my hands down by him, that would get him going even more. As hard as it was, I had to stay calm, take a few nips to the legs and be assertive with him. Anyone with a V pup needs to read this forum if they are having nipping problems, because I thought I had some possessed puppy that was forever going to bite the crap out of me. But no, he knows "no bite" now and he is 16 weeks. Funny how everyone else said it stopped about the same time. BTW, I just registered, so HELLO everyone.
 
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