BORDER COLLIE PUPPY BITING?
All puppies bite – it’s how they explore the world and it’s a problem for 80% of new puppy owners, so you are not alone. Because it’s a normal puppy behaviour that eventually dies out somewhere between 8 - 12 months, it’s often more about managing the biting in the short term than stopping the behaviour completely.
We offer a Stop Puppy Biting Training Session for only £50 or 3 sessions that cover all the puppy training required for £140. Book a session!
How To Stop A Border Collie Puppy Biting
Border collie puppies can be terrible biters and you're not alone! Every puppy and situation is unique and it’s never a case of one rule for all. The advice will be different if you have children or regular visitors, if you have other dogs, if you work or are at home all day.
However, the following points will help whatever your situation
Puppies are MUCH worse biters when they are tired. 8 – 16 week old puppies need between 18 – 20 hours a day. Have a routine and a quiet space for your puppy where you can put him to bed for a sleep whenever it is clear that he is becoming overexcited. Even though it seems like he is full of energy and won’t sleep, you will be surprised by how easily they fall asleep once the routine is established. See our section on crate training for teaching a puppy how to be alone at nap times.
Don’t play rough and tumble games that encourage the puppy to use her mouth. These games serve no useful purpose for the puppy and just tempt them to use their teeth, when what you really want is to stop them using their teeth. Instead, focus most interactions on calm time, rewarding your puppy for calm behaviour, such as lying next to you chewing on a toy, or lying on a mat.
Keep a toy or titbits on you and if the puppy does start biting, simply redirect her attention to the toy. Having a toy on a rope often helps with this, dragging the toy makes it more interesting and the puppy will enjoy playing tug.
Teach children to stand still if the puppy starts biting and to stay still until the puppy loses interest and wanders off. Make sure that they carry a toy or treats that they can give to the puppy in an emergency if she starts biting them. However, make sure that this doesn’t happen too regularly otherwise the puppy is being rewarded for biting the children. If you can’t supervise puppies and small children, keep them apart.
The biting is often an issue in the evenings, particularly in the winter months when evenings are long and dark and everyone is trying to relax in the lounge. Border collie puppies don’t do relaxing and will become increasingly frustrated without an outlet for their brains and their energy. It is often best to break the evening up into section. If possible, walk the puppy quite late (or give her a good run in the garden) then give her her tea. This will usually make her want to sleep for a couple of hours. After this , try playing games with the puppy, such as tug on a toy, or sniffing games using a snuffle mat, kong or lickimat. After this, let the puppy out again for a run in the garden, then do a spot of training. Clicker training is perfect for border collie puppies and they love it. It’s a great way of teaching them new tricks and skills while sitting in front of the tv. See our clicker training page for more advice and ideas. Following this training and another run in the garden (for a toilet break), most puppies will be ready for another snooze and when they next wake, they can be let out for the final toilet break of the evening before bedtime. This type of routine works well and keeps the puppy’s brain occupied, which can be as tiring as a long walk.
For more advice unique to your circumstances, please get in touch for a consultation. The above advice is general and may not work in every instance, so don’t despair, there is always something we can do to help. And remember, it’s a phase that won’t last forever.