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It sounds like he is fear biting... which a lot of rescue dogs do and end up being euthanized for because people don’t know how to correct the behavior. Doing obedience training can help, but you need a behaviorist to tell you how to show him that you and your family is not a threat and that biting is not acceptable.
Even if a dog gets startled... it’s first instinct shouldn’t be to bite! This is dangerous - especially around people who has children.
If you feel like crying you are actually intensifying his fear, since that emotion is considered “a weak emotional state of mind” in a dog pack and is only practiced by the weakest link in the pack. You can’t be the weakest link in the pack if you are trying to help him.
Here is a website that gives some great info on fear biting and some advice on how to start working on a fear biter, but you would need to see a professional behaviorist to cure it completely.

http://luv-pets.blogspot.com/2008/06/about-dogs-fear-biting.html

PS: This is an article from leerburg on how to introduce a new dog into your home and become a pack leader.... you can also search this site for information on fear biting. I love this site and this guy is a no nonsense trainer and has a lot of experience in what he does!
http://leerburg.com/pdf/packstructure.pdf

Good luck!
 
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