Ever experienced petting your Labrador pup and they suddenly bite you? Or have you ever been surprised by a sneak attack from your pup? These scenarios are more common than you would think. So to answer your question, when will my Labrador stop biting, read on to find out.
In fact, you have a normal Labrador retriever if they’ve ever bitten you or tried to.
These dogs are mouthy. But will this turn into a problem? If so, how can you change this behavior if it comes naturally to them?
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Why Do Labradors Bite?
Biting is natural to puppies. They will bite and nip at you since it’s a part of their personality. But Labradors do have a tendency to bite more often than other breeds.
Labs were originally born to retrieve game for their hunting masters. It’s instinct for these fellas to have something in their mouth. That’s why their bite, nip, or even chew on various things – including you.
It’s also a form of playing with you. Every bite and nip is playful and most of the time, won’t even hurt you.
Other Reasons Why Dogs Bite
Besides playing, your dog may have other reasons why they seem too mouthy. Below are some of the most possible reasons why.
Teething pups often feel discomfort and pain when during this period. Their gums can get itchy. They’d chew or bite on anything that comes in contact with their mouth even if it’s your hand.
This is their way of relieving the pain and discomfort they feel.
This can start when your dog is three to four months old. It can last for a long time, normally around six to eight months. Besides giving them chew toys, it’s best to understand their situation and be more patient.
Besides random objects and your hands, your pup may also suddenly bite their siblings. When they do, the other one tends to squeal and react. It’s best that you stop your dog or else they may end up injuring their littermates.
Pups are still in the phase of exploring every little thing in their new world. And that may include you. They will feel your hand petting and caressing them, so they might get a little curious.
It’s a lot like a human baby putting everything in their mouth. Since dogs can’t hold you by their paw, they’d get to know you by their mouth.
Dogs have very limited ways of communicating with you. One of these is through biting or nipping you. They might suddenly nip or bite you to let you know that they are hungry.
It’s also possible to show anxiety. This normally happens when they feel trapped or threatened. For example, your child has held your little pup a little too tightly. Your pup may react and say they are hurt, anxious, or in discomfort by nipping your kid.
That said, never make your dog feel anxious or threatened. If you have kids, ensure they know the proper dos and don’ts of handling dogs.
Should You Stop Your Dog’s Biting?
But truthfully, it can be dangerous once your pup carries this habit into adulthood. Young pups have fewer teeth. These are also underdeveloped and duller than when they turn into adult dogs.
That said, when an adult Labrador playfully bites you, you may end up getting hurt. Worse, it can turn into an actual wound and you might need to go to the ER.
You may also want to stop your dog’s biting even when they are still young pups. It may be normal but it could also harm any children in the family. As mentioned earlier, a kid may get bitten if they handled the dog’s a little too roughly.
But you can’t stop your dog from biting and nipping entirely. What you can do instead is to help them focus this behavior to certain objects. The best thing is to get them chew toys that they can bite, nip, and chew whenever they wish.
When Will My Labrador Stop Biting?
Labrador retriever may stop biting when they stop teething. Since they don’t feel any discomfort anymore, they’ll stop biting you as well. This should be around 10 months or so as they normally have their adult teeth by then.
But if they do continue this behavior, intervene and start training them.
How To Stop Biting
Start when they are younger pups. Some owners may feel that it’s alright for their Lab puppies to bite them since they need it. But your dog may think it’s okay with you and will continue biting you.
So, even when your dog is teething, give them toys and stuff they can actually bite. If they start biting you, be firm and say no. You can also give them treats when they stop biting you and focus on the toys.
Association is the best training method as well as positive reinforcement. So when will my Labrador stop biting, you ask? It may take a while but repetition can help your Labrador learn not to bite.