jumping and nipping

Discussion in 'Bernese Mountain Dog Training Forum' started by gloria66, Jul 8, 2011.

  1. gloria66

    gloria66 New Member

    My six month old puppy constantly jumps on my husband, nips his ankles and tries to untie his laces. Ignoring him and turning away doesn't stop the behavior. My husband thinks we should use a chain collar to correct him but I'd like to avoid this method. Has anyone used a crate as a time out in these situations? Any words of wisdom?

    SERUSSELL New Member

    Our Pup is four months and exhibits much of the same (from what we understand typical behavior) a few thoughts from what we have been told to what we have experienced: BE THE ALPHA for your pup ... jokingly Barbara used her "Steve Voice" as our pup sometimes responds differently to my commands VS hers ... and humorously it works ... but still behaves overall the same for both of us. We use several techniques to discourage the excessive gnawing/nipping and chewing on us: Give'm something else to chew on/toy/bone/etc ... pet & praise. When that hasn't worked we separate us from the pup by cage/outdoors or simply putting the child-proof gate up keeping him in the next room away from us. The breed hates owner separation and disapproval and our pup is successfully/happily learning. Be repetitious and patient with this instruction .. our pup is coming around to the concept and is such a joy.
  3. Lynn

    Lynn New Member

    This is the best way if the giving a toy and praising does not work. At 6 months he is still very much a baby and learning they do not mentally grow into their brains till around 3. They are easily trainable they love to please the humans so patience kindness being calm and it soon sinks in.

    Please do not revert to a choke collar or chain as we here in the UK call them. Bernese do not like being scolded or yanked and pulled around the chain will also pull on his fur possibly pull it out and hurt as it will on any dog and besides it can damage the larynx.
  4. gloria66

    gloria66 New Member

    Thanks for all the good advice. My instincts tell me that a choke chain is definitely not the way to go. Today, when he was jumping and nipping, we gave him some time to calm down. When he couldn't, I just took him by the collar and without saying a word, put him in his crate. After a few minutes, he settled down and was let out. He did a little nipping and shoe lace grabbing and I had him sit, come and stay. That calmed him down and redirected his mind.
  5. Lynn

    Lynn New Member

    Thats a better way to deal with the situation.

    I think we forget puppies like babies and small children get over tired and when they do they become naughty, we find kind ways to deal with this and in a similar way give them time out. IE put them to bed or calm the environment around them so they become sleepy and settle and have that much needed snooze. Mayb some getting ont hefloor and cuddling would calm him too and send him to sleep.

    I use to spend a lot of time on the floor cuddling my boy if he wasn't on the sofa in between us having cuddles.
  6. sa1821

    sa1821 New Member

    We would put Molly in time out, similar to what you are doing. Ignoring her behaviour never worked for us. We didn't want her crate to be a negative place though so we would alternate where she would go, but it would always be somewhere not too close to us. Sometimes we would just tie her leash to the kitchen table leg (until she got bigger :p) and have her wait there for a few minutes. We still do the same thing sometimes when we play outside when she gets too rambunctious. I find the best time to play with her is after she's walked or we've done some sit and waits so her mind is a bit more focused.
  7. easchaars

    easchaars New Member

    We also used a time out in his crate. We didn't like the idea of having his crate be a negative place because he loves his crate. So when we would put him in time out, we would put a blanket over the crate so he couldn't see out. We mostly would use it when he would get so crazy with biting and barking and it was a way to calm him down. It did seem like he was over tired and couldn't calm himself down. We haven't had to do it for a few weeks and he just turned 4 months old. He has gotten better.
  8. LMQ

    LMQ New Member

    Biting, jumping and leash walking

    My Paige nearly went back because of her pulling, jumping and biting.I've had her since she was 12 weeks and she turns 1 on 7/16. I took her to puppy socialization and basic training at Pet Smart. Yes I her what you are all saying, but the trainer Karen was great. She knew how big Paige would become and my walking with a cane didn't help. After 2 lessons Paige had stopped being "bad". For leash walking she had me have the leash behind me to the left. Hold leash in right hand. Thus when she pulled it was my whole body stopping her.(Halter not collar). Lots of praise when she was good, do it again if not. For jumping it was to turn my body away and yelp like a hurt pup. The biting was vinager and water 50/50 spray when redirection didn't work. Also holding her snout and saying no biting worked. I use the word easy when she starts to walk ahead and she stops till I catch up. This was learned in the beginning of leash training. Now she is a pleasure.(She is my second Berner). I have 3 other dogs not Berners also and never needed assistance with training until her. Hope this helps someone.( I posted this for leash training originally.)
  9. gloria66

    gloria66 New Member

    It sounds like you found ways that worked for you. By the way, there's nothing wrong with taking your puppy for training at Pet Smart.
  10. frisssel

    frisssel Member

    Storm use to pull and jump and nip. For the jumping and nipping he would go into a room by himself. kind of like a crate. he hated it. It did not take long for him to stop.

    Pulling, hmmmm, a choker chain did not work, he still pulled bad. I still do this when I want control. I loop the lead through the handle and put the whole lead around his neck. It works for him.

    I tried a halty but when he panicked slipped out of it and headed for traffic it went in the garbage. That was my fault for not trying to get him use to it on in the house first. I thought put it on and take him so he doesn't have time to think about it. bad idea.
  11. gloria66

    gloria66 New Member

    I happened to be watching an episode of the Dog Whisperer and this very issue came up. The owner's dog was not allowing clients into his studio and when they came in, was nipping at their heels. Cesar showed the owner how to change the dog's state of mind by using body language and his voice to snap the dog out of the behavior before it escalated. It worked. Dylan can always sense when my husband is about to enter our house and becomes very alert. When he did that today I immediately went over to him and said "No" using a low commanding tone. I had to say it a couple of times. He looked confused (I've never used that tone with him before) and sat down just looking up at me. I gave him a treat to reward his acceptable behavior. My husband opened the door and Dylan got up and started to get excited again. I said "No" a couple of times and he sat. Again I gave him a treat. My husband came in and although Dylan wasn't jumping he started to go for his ankles. I got his attention and once more said "No" a few times and blocked him from my husband. He got the message, walked away and laid down on the floor in a much calmer state of mind. My husband was able to go to him and give him some attention. We saw a totally different dog. I know this is just the first day and we need to practice this behavior over and over, but now we have some tools that hopefully help us to modify other unwanted behaviors also.
  12. Liza

    Liza New Member

    It took at least 6 months of me telling Gracie NO in a deep stern mannish voixe before she stopped the jumping and nipping on the children. I think i stoped my foot and barked NO at her about 50 times a day. She got two warnings and if she di d it again , into the cragw she went.

    I think she put holes in about 6 dozen of my boys t-shirts:rolleyes:
  13. lconroy

    lconroy New Member

    nipping and biting

    Hello Everyone!

    My Louie is an amazing Berner. We love him dearly. He is our 2nd Berner. We lost our Bella 3 years ago to Cancer (she was 7). Louie is 8 months old and the worst nipper I have ever came across. I have raised 7 dogs and worked in rescue also. He just is obsessive. Any ideas? He did lose his dog Mom at 5 weeks due to a uterine infection. I am sure this has a lot to do with it. I have tried all the things I have done with my other pups, including an Aussie I raised. Louie is just really really crazed. He was so perfect with potty training and all other things. I can't leave him alone for one second, it's getting really tiring. He does this with people and all objects. Is there a chance he might still grow out if it? Thanks Berner bumps to all:)
  14. LuvMyBerners

    LuvMyBerners New Member

    This is definitly normal puppy behaviour. A chain, choke or prong coller will do nothing in this situation. They should not be used. I read how you said you placed him in his crate and left him in there to settle down a bit. This is a good idea and exactly what we did with ours. My dogs have both always loved their bones to chew on and when they would be nibbling we would offer the bone to them. I ask the butcher at my grocery store for some marrow bones, cut approx 8 inches long. Boil them 1- 2 minutes, just to get the slime or left over meat off of them. Let them cool and then give to your dog. He will love them and might just rather chew on the bone instead of you. Be patient with him/her, sometimes it takes a while to get out of the chewing & nibbling stage.
  15. Kaya

    Kaya New Member


    Hello everyone,

    I JUST got my Berner Kaya 3 days ago. She's very young - only a little over 7 weeks, and she's crazy with the nipping and biting. She also is quite scared of her crate and being gated off at this point. Any advice in the meantime? She's only just getting to the point where I can leave her in her crate for more than a coupel minutes without screaming her little head off. So that doesn't seem like a good option for a time out to calm her down.

    But she's getting more aggressive with her biting so I'd really like to do something about it.

  16. sa1821

    sa1821 New Member

    Try feeding her in her crate, giving her treats and kong snacks while she's in her crate. Work on it being a positive place and she will be less reluctant to go in there. If she's getting nippy give her a 'time out' even if it's not in her crate- tie her leash to something until she's settled.
  17. Kaya

    Kaya New Member

    Thanks! I hadn't thought of leashing her to something until she settles. Most appreciated!
  18. Lynn

    Lynn New Member

    Kaya she is still a baby most Bernese do not leave the mum and their siblings till at least 8 weeks old.

    Personally for me leashing her to something till she settles is not acceptable at all and especially such a young puppy

    Is there any good reason she has been removed at 7 weeks rather than 8 weeks ?

    She will be frightened of being crated and gated off this is something you have to introduce carefully and gradually.

    She is not being aggresive with her nipping and biting she is doing what she should still be doing playing with her siblings roughing and tumbling and them sorting it out between them and the mum stepping in if necessary. She is also teething.

    I would introduce he to the crate quietly and calmly feeding her in there and treating her in there do not shut her in otherwise it will be a place of punishment not a safe place for her. Same with gating her off you are going to have to do this gradually too. Favourite treat or toy and only for a few minutes then let her out.

    Distract her with the nipping and biting again with toys or treats ignore the nipping tell her leave give her something nice when she does and ignore the bad behaviour which isn't bad really she is being a puppy.

    You are going to have to go slowly with this little girl and give her lots of love to make up for that week she has lost with her mum and siblings she would of learnt a lot in that last week.

    Take a look at this link it may help with the nipping and biting.

    The Bite Stops Here by Dr Ian Dunbar
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2011
  19. Kaya

    Kaya New Member

    Thanks for the link! And just to answer your questions.. Her breeder sends the puppies home at 7 weeks on the advice of her vet to help human bonding, with the recognition that they need extra dog socialization in the meantime. And, just to clarify, I didn't mean that she was actually being aggressive. I know chewing and nipping are all normal puppy behaviours. She was just escalating and biting more and so on when I tried to distract her with her toys and so on so a time out seems like it would help her calm down. But since everyone's suggestions for a time out would likely only make her more upset/riled up I was looking for an alternative. Thanks for giving some ideas!
  20. sa1821

    sa1821 New Member

    I find raising dogs just like raising kids. SO many different opinions and different things bring success for different people. You know what's right for your puppy :) Do what works for you!
    How is she doing now? Good luck!

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