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Discussion Starter #1
This is not playful nipping. He is actually biting me while I am trying to brush him. Before it was just nipping, now it is quite painful. I did as the groomer said and got him by the scruff of the neck, but that didn't work. I just do not know what to do. Other than that he is such a good dog. I know I must brush him often, but how do I handle it? Debby


 

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I'm with TODD. It sounds like he doesn't respect you as pack leader. Have you tried holding him down by his neck until he is completely relaxed and submissive to you?
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Well, I just got him brushed. THe trainer at pet smart told me to put my hand on his neck and put him on his back until he calmed down and then try. If he didn't do it to put him into his crate for time out. Well I did this and I was able to get him brushed. But I had to keep his neck in the crook of my elbow. I wasn't hurting him, just letting him know I was in control. We finally got the job done. Whew. I hope this gets easier. At least he quit trying to bite me. He is sure strong for such a little critter.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
So tell me how do I establish that I am the pack leader? I need to know how to do that. debby

 

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Exactly as your groomer advised you. Use your fingers like a the bite of a dog on his neck and put him down on his side or back and keep him there until everything in his body goes lax. That is when he has given up and submitted to you as pack leader. You may have to do this several times until he gets it but it has always worked for me when handling alpha dogs.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
thank you so much. I will do this. perhaps since he is still young he will learn well. Debby
 

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Simple things will also help. Like making him sit before he can get his food, or making him sit before taking him out the door for walks, and only allowing him to come out after you've already exited.
 

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Is he on a table? If not, put him on a table. Dogs are much better behaved on a table.

If he is still biting on the table, you can try the following method. It is manipulative and not very nice but it works every time.

Make sure that you have secure hold of your dog. This means fingers looped through the collar or harness. You absolutely can not let your dog fall!!!

When he tries to bite, make a big arm motion and big noise like you are surprised and with a pseudo clumsy movement, accidentally knock his back legs off of the table. Let him dangle and think he is going to fall. Then, make a huge deal about saving him. "OH MY GOODNESS! BABY! YOU ALMOST FELL!!!!

Dogs have an innate fear of falling. I can guarantee that he will have a look on his face like: Holy Cheesewiz! What just happened! Make all kissy face with him and tell him to be careful... stand quietly. Then go back to brushing. If he gets nasty again.... oops.... big arm movements, loud noise, back legs off the table again.

I bet you don't have to do it more than twice for him to stand nicely on the table. He will think you are retarded and totally uncoordinated but he will think it is his biting that is causing you to move and "accidentally" bump him off the table. If he is like every other poodle, he would rather put up with the grooming than fall off the table.

If you think that he might bite you when you are holding onto him, you could leash him up and hold him from the leash. Again, though, DO NOT LET HIM FALL. He could hurt himself very badly. If you think you can't handle/coordinate this, don't try.
 

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I'd get a muzzle to eliminate the option of biting. He will learn quickly that he needs to tolerate brushing. Also be sure that you are brushing correctly, in a way that's not hurting him. Your groomer can help with that. Lots of praise for when he does good, even rewarding increments of positivity.
 

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Exactly as your groomer advised you. Use your fingers like a the bite of a dog on his neck and put him down on his side or back and keep him there until everything in his body goes lax. That is when he has given up and submitted to you as pack leader. You may have to do this several times until he gets it but it has always worked for me when handling alpha dogs.
That's exactly what we did for Moose too.

Worked like a charm.

They need to respect you, and with that respect comes a bit of fear but that fear should only be shown when they know they did something wrong and poodles are so very smart they darn sure know when they messed up!
 

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I would be a bit worried that might backfire and make a dog afraid of being groomed.
I agree.

You don't really want to take something that's already not to their liking and add something else not to their liking that is not normal for them. IE: Falling off a table vs. being held down for doing something wrong.

This is why it's important to establish pack leader appropriately and not when you are mad or angry at them it only confuses them.
 

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Another thing to add to being the pack leader,
When you come home resist the temptation to cuddle your dogs. You must ignore them. Once they have realised that something has changed they will go and lie down (this could take a while). After five minutes, call your dog to you and give him/her a treat, but if they get boisterous or excited, then repeat process. Basically this is teaching them that you are the leader and dictate the rules. It is especially important to do this when you 'reunite' as the leader will be established again.

Remember when doing this that you must NOT ENGAGE your dog in anyway, no hellos, eyecontact, nothing. The only thing you can do is gently push their chests down if they are being overbearing. If you give in all you are teaching them that they are the boss and you have given them the attention they want.

This may seem very confusing, but if you want a more in depth description, google 'Amichien Bonding' which is in the Book 'The Dog Listener' by Jan Fennell.

This method worked a treat and my spoo will stand on the table only getting off when I tell her, she even lifts her leg for me to groom it.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Exactly as your groomer advised you. Use your fingers like a the bite of a dog on his neck and put him down on his side or back and keep him there until everything in his body goes lax. That is when he has given up and submitted to you as pack leader. You may have to do this several times until he gets it but it has always worked for me when handling alpha dogs.
I have done this a couple of times now and I have been able to brush him twice. Of course both times, I had to stop and show him who was boss. But then he allowed me to finish. I guess this just takes a while. I will keep up with it as I always want him to look as good as he is good. Debby

 

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I agree.. pack leader, pack leader, pack leader! And I don't mean being mean, just as spoospirit and TODD said. My toy/mini (oversized toy) male, Jester, hated being groomed when I first got him. He would scream and turn to bite me. I just immediately put him down on his side holding his neck and let him scream and struggle till he quieted down and his whole body relaxed. I never said one word to him throughout his tantrum. Then when he was quiet and relaxed, I let him back up and went back to grooming. He did it again and I repeated the process. After the third time I put him down, he gave up the fight and we had a pleasant grooming where I praised him throughout. The next grooming session was the same problem but only took one time putting him down. He still needs to be reminded every once in a while but only by telling him "hey!!" when snaps his head in the direction of my hand but does not even attempt to bite me. Some dogs are natural dominant types and will need to have your dominance reinforced every so often, others "cry uncle" after the first lesson and are very glad to give you the top position.

Also, all my dogs have to sit before they get their food, and they know it...lol... it is comical to see them all run to "their" spots and plop their butts down and wait for me to give them the command to eat. And, they are required to sit at the door before going out with me, unless I am letting them out to do their duties, then when they ask to go out to go, I let them out.

The other thing is they are not allowed to get in or out of the car till they are given the word. They are not allowed to jump up on me or anyone else, only allowed to put their feet up in my lap for petting when I tell them it's ok. It makes a big difference in their attitude towards me and other people.

Making yourself Alfa in a firm but fair way (which doesn't include yelling at the dog, they don't respond to that) goes a long way to a happy dog that knows its place in the "family pack" and looks at you as the person they want to be near and listen to. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Wow, I can see I've got my work cut out before me. But I will love it. I really thank you all for all you help. Debby
 

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Please watch the video i posted on the other thread. I agree in NILIF training (nothing in life is free), but i dont agree with "putting a puppy on his back". Use lots of praise and treats and change his attitude about the whole grooming process. You will have to have him groomed for the next (hopefully) 15 years. That is a long time to hate being groomed.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
HEY!!!!!! Guess what!!!!!!!!! I combed him with out him offering to bite me once. I tried the treats and baby talk and he did fine. And I also got a table to groom him on. Before I was doing it on my lap. He did jump off the table into my lap for the treats, but when I put him back on the table he let me groom him. I really appreciate all your help and the video was very helpful.

 
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