Aggressive Dogs: Biting

My dog is biting people. What should I do? -- iVillager tiffallen

Andrea Arden says:
If your dog has bitten someone, I would strongly urge you to contact a local expert. You might try calling the Association of Pet Dog Trainers (800-PET-DOGS) for a referral. Also, talk to your vet. Either way, be sure to choose carefully. Steer clear of people who suggest using punishments to teach your dog to stop biting people. Why? Because this is not only unpleasant for you and your dog, but it almost always makes matters worse. The dog learns it is good to keep people away with growling and biting, because when they do come around she is punished. Instead, an expert will guide you in helping your dog learn to like the presence of people (consistently) by rewarding her when they are around. This will teach her to focus on you. It is important for the sake of anyone who is exposed to your dog and for your dog herself that she not be given any more opportunities to bite people. I would also suggest checking out a video by Dr. Ian Dunbar called Biting. It is distributed by James & Kenneth Publishers in Berkeley, Calif.

Andrea Arden, author of Dog Friendly Dog Training

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