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Punishment Can Make Dogs Afraid

Dogs that are punished for trying to play-bite a person often become confused and distressed. Learning that an owner becomes an angry aggressive monster when invited to play can have damaging repercussions for future relationships with people.



Severe punishment can make dogs afraid of hands, feet, or whatever is used to punish them.  This can turn a happy, sociable dog into a defensive fear-biter.


Even if the punishment works temporarily, the problem for the dog is that it still needs to find an outlet for its desire to play.  Since the punishment has stopped them wanting to play with humans, they will find other less acceptable ways to play, such as chasing the children or cats, pouncing on shadows, or digging in the garden. 


So punishment may, in some cases, help to prevent your dog play-biting, but the side effects often go unnoticed until they develop into a full-blown behaviour problem at a later date.  Far better, instead, to teach your dog to play with you with toys instead.





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