July 07, 2005

Got puppy nipping?

We've been working on nipping by:
  1. stopping all movement when Dusty grabs clothes or skin
  2. making a noise designed to startle
  3. distracting her with an appropriate toy or chew
Today I started rewarding her for not grabbing at hands, socks, shoe laces or other items just because they were in front of her face. Following Karen Pryor's I'm OK With That Game.
  • Take your closed fist and put it in front of the puppy’s face. Click and treat if he doesn’t nip—even for a second!
  • Next, take your closed fist and wave it slowly around in front of the puppy.
  • Raise the criteria for a click by both lengthening the amount of time the puppy can have your fist in front of his nose without nipping, and by altering the distance from his face and the speed of your hand flying around his face.
  • Do the same with your open hand. Do the same with your index finger. Try it with your shoes and your clothing.
  • Repeat this exercise with a toy or chew bone. Click and treat for calmness and for waiting rather than grabbing at the object.

Stay at each step for several repetitions, until puppy is consistently making the right choice - not to grab at something simply because it is in front of her face.

1 comment:

Tommy Lee said...

Training your dog is the best you can do for your pet as a way of showing love and care. Dog clicker training is especially effective as a means of behavior modification in dogs.