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Revisiting Bite Inhibition in adolescent puppies with adult teeth
  • AnjyilAnjyil
    Posts: 720
    Okay, so all the bite inhibition threads are about young puppies--those with their milk teeth. My dog needs a serious revisit in inhibition, but his teeth are no longer puppy teeth. They are strong, painful adult teeth. Obviously, trying to illicit bites to teach him to soften his mouth is just impossible. I have a deep-seated fear of pain so there is no way I could bring myself to do it. But I have to do something---he hardly ever listens to my husband, so begging him to be the sacrificial lamb it out XD

    Now, as a puppy, he actually had super good inhibition. Mouthing was all he ever did, never pain, scratch or bruise on me. My husband was the one who started noticing the strength in his bites and then it was my turn---welcome to adolescents.

    So what other techniques can I apply without getting bruised by his ever-strengthening jaw? So far, the only thing I have seen that looks possible is something called a spoon technique.
  • Mochi920Mochi920
    Posts: 357
    I thought mine was the only one that was going back to bad biting habits :\ I wonder if it's part of their rebellious stage in their life.
  • AnjyilAnjyil
    Posts: 720
    @Mochi920 haha--yup, most of what I have been reading about adolescents indicates that failing inhibition and other rebellious streaks are part of it. I think it best to go back to a modified form of inhibition training, but I am terrified of that bite. My bruises still hurt (of course, that could be mental).

    I kind of wonder if, like, maybe when they were puppies, their inhibition didn't require as much control. Their jaws are weak as puppies and their teeth are fragile, but sharp, so the fine motor control required for bite inhibition in puppyhood wouldn't be the same as in Adult hood. Adult teeth are blunt and thick and the jaws are getting stronger to accommodate that, which requires more finesse in control. Or so I believe. I did some studies in basic human anatomy for art, including muscle movement and control and stuff (yeah...I am a nerd when I get obsessed with a subject).

    What bothers me is that no one talks about this if it is true, so there is never any real recommendation or suggestions on how to walk through the developmental stage or warning about how long to do bite training. What I mean by that is people don't ask "how long" and you don't really see it in the step-by-step. People assume that when it is done, it is done. Coal never bit me after inhibition training, only light mouthing and liking. In fact, he is very cautious around my hands even now XD So I never had an opportunity to continue working with him and, silly me, didn't think it was necessary. then suddenly, BAM, right in the tibia haha

    of course that whole hypothesis about puppy vs adult inhibition could be completely bunk so just consider it my musings XD

    Post edited by Anjyil at 2017-03-15 15:48:55
  • Mochi920Mochi920
    Posts: 357
    I also read that puppies teeth a lot too even after their teeth fall out because the new teeth that's coming in is uncomfortable for them as well. That may be another reason why they go back to biting hard, along with the reason that they are going through a rebellious stage.
  • AnjyilAnjyil
    Posts: 720
    that's an excellent point! Add on the hormones and new urges and you got one painful experience XD
  • LilikoiLilikoi
    Posts: 1115
    I mostly just took a step back and continued bite inhabitation training just as I would for a puppy. Even in adolescence, Ozzy never bit hard... But he would often either accidentally get my hand during playtime and occasionally tried to intentionally go for hands when he wanted to win a tug game or something lol. It was never hard biting, never left any mark. I continued the bite inhibition training of reacting with "ouch" when he used teeth. If he was intentionally being mouthy, the game was ended. I would get up and walk out of the room, or put him in the kitchen behind the baby gate for 30 seconds to a minute, then let him out like nothing had happened. If he continued to bite, he went in for another minute or 2. I also taught "soft" by putting a bit of peanut butter on my hand and using a clicker/more treats when he would lick. So, if he accidentally gets his mouth on us, it is very easy to just ask him to be soft, and he'll close his mouth and lick instead of rolling around with his mouth wide open. :))

    They definitely have a stage where they test all the boundaries, and it's almost like you have to start from scratch with all of the training again, like they regressed to a puppy and don't know (or ignore) everything that they were taught lol. Be patient, be consistent.
  • AnjyilAnjyil
    Posts: 720
    I am so envious. @lilikoi ^_^ That is what I do...problem is the intensity catches me off guard and I over react ::rolls eyes: But definitely if I even feel a tooth graze, I am going to start that up again.
  • LilikoiLilikoi
    Posts: 1115
    Lol ignore that fantastic bite "inhabitation" auto correct. Was kinda rushed commenting between classes. :))

    Yeah I am not skittish about biting at all haha. So I don't pull away or react tooooo strongly. But we have a lot of child neighbors and they're pretty sporadic and flail their hands all about lol. That was a challenge for Ozzy as a puppy, cus they like to try to poke him without him noticing... so I had to work a lotttt with the kids haha. Ozzy learned soft, i told them to put their hands out and let him lick them first and be gentle and slow and pet from under his chin. It went way better and they don't pester him and flail all around him anymore haha.
  • AnjyilAnjyil
    Posts: 720
    Ah the ideal situation :x

    I totally didn't see the inhabitation haha I read it as inhibition. :D

    I am envious of people who can tolerate pain better than me. I never had to experience anything more extreme than a shot or scratch, so I have a very visceral reaction because no temperance. But talking on my life story thread and the ideas that generate here will help. I am already dropping back to a 0 tolerance of teeth. No-mark and leave. No if ands or buts. Also, I found the O technique for holding food and treats so I implemented that today. Still not sure about the spoon technique that I read in one of the books on my kindle.

    Hmm... think I should purposely move my feet in a way that shuffles--he loves attacking that and we have a ton of old people who walk like that. Might be a good idea, ending if he bites and trying to get him to get used to it....

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