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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hi! I've skimmed thru several ankle nipping posts, but haven't found quite what I need. My Poodle is a 6 month old Standard. She likes to nip at either my Achilles tendon or the lower back of my calves when she's very excited about playing and also when she'd like to stay outside and she's walking behind me on the way in. She never does this indoors. The tricky part is I'd like to be able to catch her in progress, but she either sneaks up too quickly, or she stops abruptly when she notices me starting to turn around to face her when I sense the nip is coming. She then backs up and gets into the "play pose" (torso down, butt up) and barks, tail wagging. Sometimes I don't have time to "play her out", but other times when we've finished romping around with balls, fetching, etc., and I'm saying time to go in, she can be persistent. She knows I don't like it, and I have said "ouch". This works for all other overzealous play nipping, but just not this one. One solution would be to never have her walk behind me but that's not always possible, and that doesn't address her racing by doing "drive-by's" while lapping the yard at top speed. Thanks!
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For mine, the leg attacks were one of the last puppy biting things to go away. I am still not sure they are totally gone at nearly 10 months, but they are surely getting rare. I also had them happen outside even after they stopped inside. I just ignored or scolded when they occurred, but I don't know for sure that it had any effect. You may be able to hasten their disappearance through training methods, but it may also just be one of those puppy things that they grow out of over time. It probably depends on the puppy.
 

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Oh gosh, what a cute little ankle nipping girl!!

Peggy's not quite 8 months, so my memory of this stage is fresh! And Peggy will still sometimes pogo and mouth excessively when over-excited.

We've had the best luck playing "boring statue." We stop dead in our tracks. Arms crossed. No eye contact. No fun. These days that pretty much always stops the unwanted mouthing or barking, almost instantly. If it doesn't, we abruptly walk away, count to 30 or so, and then return. If she offers up something sweet (a sit, a gentle nose, whatever) we're good. If not we walk away and go do something else.

But another important part of this, at least for us, has been limiting the activities that wind her up. I don't, for example, let Peggy run around like a wild thing in the morning. We do leash time for potty, and quiet energy in the house for breakfast. This sets a good tone. The few times I just opened the door and let her shoot out for a morning pee, she had trouble winding down afterwards, and I just don't have the energy for that in the morning, nor is it a behaviour I want her to rehearse.

So not only do we 1) stop the fun INSTANTLY when she tries to engage us inappropriately, we 2) identify and do our best to eliminate the circumstances that precede the stuff we don't like.

At this age I'm amazed how just stopping an unwanted behaviour for a few days can virtually extinguish it. They really do learn so fast when you're consistent. But consistency can be HARD.
 

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Hey, thanks to both of you. I was thinking puppy phase thing, good to know . BTW, I also wondered if it's a "holdover" because Poodles have been used for herding in the past? Nothing like a quick nip in the AT to get the herd moving!
 

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Poppy went through a phase when the best game in the world was nipping my bum - usually on the stairs, as she was too small to reach otherwise. As a dedicated positive trainer of a very nervous little pup I did my best to suppress the behaviour by ignoring it, but it is hard to suppress the automatic jump and yip when unexpectedly pinched on a tender spot, and she obviously got a kick out of making me do it. One day she took me by surprise when I was carrying something downstairs - it really hurt, and nearly startled me into falling. I turned round and roared, loud and scary. I immediately felt ashamed of myself, but Poppy just sat and looked up at me, the wheels turned in her head, and she stopped doing it. Just to make sure, I have taught her to go all the way downstairs ahead of me - also saves tripping over her. I am far from advocating this method, but I have to say in that one situation with that one dog it worked.

I wonder if by "playing it out" you are inadvertently rewarding the behaviour? She nips to get your attention, bounces winningly, and gets another 10 minutes of play. I would try teaching her an alternative way of asking - Sophy uses Down to say Please - and make sure that nipping means everything stops being fun. Back in the house for a bit or, as others have suggested, humans become boring statues.
 
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Discussion Starter #7
Poppy went through a phase when the best game in the world was nipping my bum - usually on the stairs, as she was too small to reach otherwise. As a dedicated positive trainer of a very nervous little pup I did my best to suppress the behaviour by ignoring it, but it is hard to suppress the automatic jump and yip when unexpectedly pinched on a tender spot, and she obviously got a kick out of making me do it. One day she took me by surprise when I was carrying something downstairs - it really hurt, and nearly startled me into falling. I turned round and roared, loud and scary. I immediately felt ashamed of myself, but Poppy just sat and looked up at me, the wheels turned in her head, and she stopped doing it. Just to make sure, I have taught her to go all the way downstairs ahead of me - also saves tripping over her. I am far from advocating this method, but I have to say in that one situation with that one dog it worked.

I wonder if by "playing it out" you are inadvertently rewarding the behaviour? She nips to get your attention, bounces winningly, and gets another 10 minutes of play. I would try teaching her an alternative way of asking - Sophy uses Down to say Please - and make sure that nipping means everything stops being fun. Back in the house for a bit or, as others have suggested, humans become boring statues.
Yes, Poodles are quite mischievous! Her eyes are always dancing when she does this. To clarify on "playing her out" that was to mean playing acceptable games until she appears to have had enough. Apparently, there's no such thing and her energy is nearly endless. 99.9% of the time she's a most wonderful, loving, responsive, and eager to please beautiful girl. I'm glad to hear the consensus that it's a phase, she really does not seem to be a problem child otherwise. She's quite lively to take for a walk, but lies quietly at my feet when she needs to, most of the time without me telling her to. I actually enjoy her glee, as I am spirited and energetic myself! Nothing but love for her!:love:
 

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Beckie (toy) will jump on my ankles from behind when she’s telling me to hurry up. It annoys me but since it’s done from behind, I’ve never been able to stop her. And her brother has learned it too so now I don’t even know who’s doing it... I just gave up.

Mind you they’re not biting me so I understand your frustration !
 
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