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I need a little advice on training my lab mix. I did quite a bit of research before getting our puppy from the shelter. She's a sweet puppy, and of course she likes to chew on everything. My problem is the biting issue. I've tried firmly telling her no and sometimes that works. Some have told me to hold her snout, look her in the eyes and tell her no(to affirm the alpha position)-this did not go over well, especially when she gets super excited. The biting becomes a big issue when we're outside. I've given her toys to play with, but she insists on nipping at my shoes or pants. The last issue happened today when we were outside. She's not a big fan of the leash to begin with, so when I told her NO(to not chew on the leash) she freaked out, pulling and trying to get away. When I tried to walk to her she continued to back up and she had a fit when I tried to pick her up. It was only after a second that she calmed down and let me pick her up. She's never randomly turned on me or my kids.

Sorry, I know that got a little off topic. Back on topic, any tips for teaching leash training and no biting would be greatly appreciated. Thanks. :) Oh and I guess I should mention that she's just a little over 2 months old.
 

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I don't know how new she is to you but my assumption is that you haven't had her long? She's probably a little unsure/scared of you. Imagine being a baby, as she is, in a completely new environment with new people! It can't be easy. Also, give up on the "alpha" stuff. It's old training methods and newer, better methods have been found.

I suggest reading these threads:
The Bite Stops Here
NILF: Nothing in Life is Free
Ian Dunbar's Training Site
They should help.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks PatchworkRobot. Yes, she is fairly new to our home. She has her moments where she loves all over you, but I fear she may have been treated poorly by her other caregivers because she cowers and runs to her crate when I stand sometimes.

Thanks for nixing the Alpha thing. I had a feeling it wasn't a good idea. Thanks also for the links. I'll be looking into those. :)
 

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(second the alpha nix, and the links provided)

"No" is pretty much useless information to the dog, especially an 8+ week puppy. It really doesn't convey anything to the dog except for "uh oh!, for some unknown reason, something unpleasant is about to happen to me". Rather than trying to ambiguously 'correct' in this way, REWARD the behaviours you DO approve of. Begin to build a history, a foundation, with the accent on positive. Some basic pre-emptive management (ie: remove temptations, dangers etc beforehand) may be beneficial as well.

For leash walking, I'd start at the very beginning by conditioning your puppy to CALMLY wear his leash and collar INSIDE the house, before moving on to anything more complicated than that.
 

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And hang in there! Puppies are just awful. Don't get too worried about it. They are only puppies for about 15 minutes! Time just flies.

Socialize them and love them and manage them. The rest almost works itself out.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks trainingjunkie. :) I bought some Kong toys for her & she loves them. Helps keep her stimulated and helps her from biting others.
 

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I second everything else said here, and wanted to deal with this:

She's never randomly turned on me or my kids.
Dogs don't "randomly turn on" people. There is a form of epilepsy that can cause unpredictable aggressive behavior, but that's not random, that's a neurological disorder. 9 times out of 10, dogs give very clear signals that they are uncomfortable with what you are doing and you need to stop. Most people don't understand what they are seeing, keep going and end up getting bitten.

I would suggest that you learn the warning signals and teach them to your children, not because your lab is vicious, she sounds like a normal puppy, but because I think this should be required education in every classroom in the world.

Oh, and the 10th time, someone used that stupid alpha crap to teach the dog that giving warnings like growls is bad, so the dog skipped growling and went straight for biting.
 

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You're welcome. The first time I saw a chart like that, I thought "Oops! I thought that meant happy!" It's not always obvious to humans what a dog is trying to say.
 

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In addition to The Bite Stops Here, the sticky in the new dog Forum:

I know you know Bite Inhibition, but I'm hoping he has strong Lab tendencies, so I'm re-posting this, which may help:

Some Tweaks to Bite Inhibition (to get him to stop biting when he wants to play):
1. When the pup bites, then yelp. It should sound about like what the pup does when you step on its paw... don't step on his paw for a sample :). When you yelp, the pup should startle briefly and stop nipping. Praise and pet. He'll bite.
2. When he bites the second time, Yelp. When he stops, praise and pet. He'll nip again, although it may be a little gentler. ...
3. When he bites a third time, Yelp (see a pattern?). But this time, turn your back for 15 - 30 secs. If he comes around and play bows or barks, then that is an apology. This is important. Accept it, praise and pet... and cringe in expectation of the next nip...
4. When he bites the 4th time, Yelp, then leave the area, placing him in a 2 min. time-out. It is better if you can leave, rather than moving him. Then, return and interact. (He's still hungry...)
5. When he nips the fifth time, yelp, and leave the area, stopping interaction for now.

Pups need to sleep over night in order to learn their lessons. So, keep doing this for 3 days. By the third day, you should notice signficant Bite Inhibition. He may still nip, but it will be softer and he won't draw blood. Keep up the training and make sure that everyone yelps.... Very powerful method.

If you learn the technique, then you can apply the "yelp" to other circumstances, also. I believe that "yelp" is "Please don't do that, I don't like it." in dog communication. I currently use the yelp when my dog plays tug, then runs with the toy, when he fetches and keeps it out of reach or when he takes a treat too quickly....
 
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