How to Punish a Dog for Biting

It’s bad when your dog bites someone, but the way to deal with this is not through punishment. Punishing your dog, especially if you hit or yell at him, can make your dog afraid of you. This can make him more aggressive. There are better ways to deal with biting.

Step 1

Prevent your dog from biting again instead of trying to find ways to punish him for the past bite. Once you learn to avoid bites, you can prevent them.

Step 2

Train your dog that he doesn’t possess anything; everything he has is yours to take whenever you want. A good way to get this message across is at feeding time. Stand in front of your dog while holding the food bowl. Tell him to sit. He needs to look at you and stay that way until you decide to put down the bowl to let him eat. Take this measure one step further by putting your hand in the food bowl or removing the bowl a few seconds after he begins eating. Your dog needs to understand that the food is yours and you are merely letting him have it.

Step 3

Respect your dog by not sneaking up on him to scare him or bothering him while he’s asleep. Sneaking up on a dog or waking a sleeping dog can frighten him, and a scared dog is likely to bite.

Step 4

Schedule an appointment with your veterinarian if your dog starts uncharacteristically nipping or biting people. This could be a sign that he is in pain.

Step 5

Look for warning signs that all dogs display before they bite to try to prevent the bite from happening. Dogs typically pin back their ears, and the hair on their back rises. If the dog yawns or shows teeth, he is warning you. If you touch a dog and he freezes and stares you down, that dog might bite.

Step 6

Spay or neuter your dog. This cuts down on aggressive behavior and makes dogs less likely to bite.

Step 7

Exercise your dog daily by giving him a walk and by playing with him.

Step 8

Teach your dog the basic commands of “sit,” “stay,” “come,” “give” and “leave it.”

Step 9

Seek professional help from a dog trainer or an animal behaviorist if you cannot make any headway with your dog on your own. Ask the professional whether she has experience with aggressive dogs.

Step 10

Confine your dog if he does bite someone. You might need to seek medical help for the victim.

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