Even in a sweet-tempered cocker spaniel, biting cannot be helped in many instances. Keep in mind that biting is an essential behaviour among dogs for many reasons. Dogs have to bite out of offense or defense as well as out of necessity when feeding.
The responsibility of the owner then is to ensure that the cocker spaniel will bite if and only when necessary. As such, biting out of aggression, out of fear and out of simple malice must be controlled if the cocker spaniel is to become a good member of the family. In all of these cases for biting in a cocker spaniel, training is very important to prevent recurrences of the negative behaviour.
But before the negative behaviour of cocker spaniel biting can be resolved through training, it is important to ensure that the causes have been pinpointed. Think of making a plan without a rationale for the actions and it is bound to fail and so it is with resolving this type of negative behaviour in a cocker spaniel – or ay dog while we are at the subject of canines biting the hand that feeds them.
There are two main causes of inappropriate biting among cocker spaniels. The first is the result of its instinct to assert its dominance over man and dog alike. All dogs have this instinct to become the alphas dog of the pack and if it means biting the other dogs or the human into submission, then so be it.
The second cause is closely related with the reserved, almost submissive, nature of a few blood lines. Such timidity can often translate to biting out of fear against other dogs or humans or both. While a cocker spaniel biting out of dominance can be an offensive act, biting out of fear is a defensive behaviour.
But no matter which side of the fence the biting behaviour is being made, the pet owner must take the necessary steps to stop it. The cocker spaniel can be hurt by other dogs while humans can also hurt it in a physical and mental manner. Again, there are training methods that can be adopted to resolve the issue at the soonest time possible.
The first solution will have to be a DIY process where the cocker spaniel will be trained by its owner in the safety of the home. Usually, this method must be undertaken when the cocker spaniel biting behaviour is still at its mild stage and when the owner is confident that DIY training will be successful. The methods used can include the following:
- Asserting your authority over the cocker spaniel. This does not mean being heavy-handed with the dog since physical punishment will only backfire. Instead, being firm, consistent and masterful of the commands like “Stop” will produce better results. Saying “Ouch” in a firm voice will also get the message across but no hitting.
- Ensure that the dog’s space is respected by the members of the household. For example, feeding and sleeping times must not be disturbed by a child taking away the food bowl and pulling on its tail, respectively.
Now, when the biting has progressed to moderate forms even with the DIY training, then a professional trainer must be called in to stop the cocker spaniel biting behaviour. The results will be better, guaranteed.