How to Punish a Dog for Biting

by Liza Blau
    Teach Fido that biting comes with a high cost.

    Teach Fido that biting comes with a high cost.

    Photodisc/Photodisc/Getty Images

    Your pooch is usually gentle and well-behaved, but at times turns into an aggressive, biting wolf. Approximately 800,000 individuals in America require medical assistance for dog bites per year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The next time Fido bites, teach him violent behavior won't be tolerated.

    Step 1

    Slowly remove your hand or other body part from Fido's mouth after he bites. Don't yank or jerk it away to avoid upsetting him further.

    Step 2

    Look Fido in the eye and loudly exclaim, "Ouch!" React to his bite with an announcement of pain to let the aggressive doggy know his bite hurt you, even if it didn't.

    Step 3

    Grasp the loose skin on the back of your pooch's neck. Give a gentle, yet firm shake and sternly announce, “No biting!"

    Step 4

    Stop playing with your pooch and leave the room. Your pup is a social animal, so refusing to engage with him after he bites is an effective punishment. He'll learn that biting not only harms you, but will cost him your companionship and help to put a stop to his aggressive behavior.


    • If your dog continues to bite, consult with a trainer or animal behaviorist to help curb his aggressive tendencies.
    • Consider having your dog neutered, which can help reduce aggressive behavior, especially in males.


    • Don't bite back. Never resort to physically punishing your dog, such as hitting or slapping him, which could make him even more aggressive. If you do, he may see it as some sort of game and believe it's his turn to bite you again.
    • Don't play games with your dog that promotes aggressive and violent behavior, such as tug-of-war or wrestling.
    • Take your dog to a veterinarian to determine if the biting is possibly being caused by an underlying illness.

    Photo Credits

    • Photodisc/Photodisc/Getty Images

    About the Author

    Liza Blau received a B.A. in English from Columbia University. Her writing has appeared in fiction anthologies from Penguin Press, W.W. Norton, NYU Press and others. After healing her own life-threatening asthma by switching to a whole, natural foods diet, she founded the NYC Asthma Wellness Center. Blau counsels individuals on healing their own asthma and allergies with dietary and lifestyle changes.

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