6 Common Reasons Your K9 Bites

Posted: September 20, 2010 by at Bite Work | Problem Solving

Your dog may bite for many reasons. How you should deal with this behavior depends on why he acted in this way.

Here are the 6 most common reasons your dog may bite:

1. Surprise. If you startle your dog, or there is a sudden loud noise, he may get a fright. He might feel he needs to defend himself and will snap at whatever or whoever is nearby. The solution to this is to avoid any sudden movements, and to train your dog to get used to noises.

2. Excitement. Dogs love to play and when they play with each other, they often use their mouth to grab at limbs or tails. Your dog may not realize that you don’t enjoy being played with in the same way, and he may bite you as part of the game. This is easily fixed; teach your dog the correct way to play with you, and you’ll both enjoy playtime a lot more.

3. Pain. When they are hurting, dogs often bite if you approach them. They may think you’re the cause of their pain, or they may not want you to touch them in case it hurts even more. There will be times where you have to touch or move a dog that is in pain, for example to take them to the veterinarian or to treat a wound. In these cases, a gentle muzzle will keep you safe while you handle them

4. Protection. Some dogs feel they need to protect their food, their yard or even their vehicle, especially if they don’t know you. Never approach a dog that is guarding their possessions unless their owner is present. If a dog’s behavior is extreme, such as protecting the couch from your partner and not letting them sit down, you’ll need professional help to resolve the situation.

5. Dominance. If a dog feels that they are in charge of a person, and that person asks them to do something they don’t want to, they may bite. This can be something as simple as moving a dog off the bed, or out of the way when you want to walk past. In this situation, you definitely need professional help to teach your dog their place in your family pack, and to show you how to be a fair and consistent leader.

6. Tormenting. Dogs can be very tolerant, but even they have their limits. If your dog is being tormented by a child over and over again, he has very few ways of saying “stop” and may feel he has no alternative but to bite. Make sure you keep an eye on your dog at all times when there is the chance they may be subjected to unwanted attention.

In Summary – Managing a dog bite incident may be as simple as being more cautious around a sleeping dog, or keeping him away from over-affectionate children. However, if you’re in any doubt, it’s a good idea to seek professional help to prevent your dog biting again.