Mouthing your Hands and Teaching to Take Treats Gently


From Rusty LaFrance

Gently hold her lower jaw and put your thumb on top of of her tongue. As soon as she stops, back off.  Do this consistently and she will soon stop trying to herd you wtih her mouth.

From Karen Clouston  -- Teach them to "Leave It"

  1. Take a tiny morsel of a favorite treat in your hand, extend your hand and tell Hannah, "Take It". Let her have the treat.
  2. Repeat this several times until you know she understands (basically, open hand means she can eat it...not a hard thing for a dog to learn!)
  3. Take another morsel of food, but close your fist over it. Hold it out like you did with an open hand and say, "Leave it". let her nibble, chew, lick, etc., etc. When she finally backs off (and she will), open the palm of your hand and tell her "take it" (from the palm, not the fingers). Keep doing that and she will get the idea that she only gets the treat if she's gentle.
  4. When you know she understands "leave it", do the same exercise as in number three, but start with your hand open. Say "leave it", but leave your palm open. If she reaches for it anyway, close your fist. If she sits back, open your palm. If she reaches for it, close it. When she's really and truly given up, open your palm and say "take it". Let her have the treat.

By working through these steps, she will learn the words Leave It, and what
it means and it is amazing how having something constructive to do decreases
the biting.

Good luck.

From Joey Fineran

When a dog is mouthy, keep a plastic lemon (full of concentrated lemon juice -- in the produce section of the grocery store) handy and when they try to take your arm/hand/LEG! squirt the lemon juice in their mouth. Three times is all it took for the dog they were talking about. After that, just the sight of the "lemon" was enough.

From Fran Peck

Mouthing is how puppies explore their world and learn its limitations.

To work on the mouthing I would "channel" her mouthing, not try to "correct" it. I do this by getting a piece of burlap, roll it up tightly into an 18 in by 2 in roll and this becomes her "mouth" stress toy. You can also use a rope toy. When she starts to mouth your hands, crack out a "NO" "here, play with your toy" and swap your bodily part for the burlap roll. You can then also use the burlap roll to motivate her to sit or down or come or all sorts of things.

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