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Nibbling on other dog's ears....

This is a place to gain some understanding of dog behavior and to assist people in training their dogs and dealing with common behavior problems, regardless of the method(s) used. This can cover the spectrum from non-aversive to traditional methods of dog training. There are many ways to train a dog. Please avoid aggressive responses, and counter ideas and opinions with which you don't agree with friendly and helpful advice. Please refrain from submitting posts that promote off-topic discussions. Keep in mind that you may be receiving advice from other dog owners and lovers... not professionals. If you have a major problem, always seek the advice of a trainer or behaviorist!

  
Watson

Ba-ba Wa-wa- (makes him- howl!)
 
 
Barked: Fri Dec 21, '07 12:13pm PST 
Watson has a strange habit of nibbling on other dog's ears -not really biting, more rubbing the front of his teeth on their ears, with just a little biting. Most of the time, the other dog will let him do it for a while, then quietly move away. Well, we recently added Jack (an adopted, 4-yr old lab) to the household (Watson has been the only dog for over a year). Jack is CONSTANTLY seeking attention from us, and when he comes and puts his head in your lap, Watson will position himself on Jack's left and nibble on his ear. Jack will tolerate it for a few minutes, then turn and snap at Watson, and they will scuffle for a few seconds. We are in the process of working on Jack's attention seeking behavior (redirecting him to bones and Kong's) but have no idea what to do about Watson, who will sometimes nibble on Jack even when he's quietly chewing on a bone in a room other than the one 'his people' are in. Not sure how to stop Watson's behavior, and not sure why he's doing it - aggression? jealousy?
Any thoughts?
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Louie

me too! MMMEEEE- TTTOOOOO!!!
 
 
Barked: Fri Dec 21, '07 4:57pm PST 
maybe watson just has a fetish? every dog has their odd behaviors, maybe that is just watson's. Louie likes to kind of chew on benny's ears but it is more of a playful thing, like when louie wants to wrestle with benny or get his attention he will grab his ears. Is watson a submissive dog? it could be him trying to show that he is not a threat to the other dog.
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Koji

It's chewable,- if I can bite- it.
 
 
Barked: Thu Dec 27, '07 11:43am PST 
I don't have any suggestions for you, but I know that my older brother and I like to do that too. I tend to nibble on his ears, and he seems to tolerate it. Not sure why I do it either. Mommy and Daddy think I'm weird. I am not!
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Dora

Can I chew that?
 
 
Barked: Thu Dec 27, '07 6:22pm PST 
I'm so glad to hear that someone else's Coonhound does this too! Dora loves to nibble on ears: both her brother Dade's, and also my husband and mine. In the morning she will jump on the bed and search out my husband's ears no matter how he tries to hide under the covers. We just see it as a playing/affection thing, and when we are all playing together, I actually bite her ears back a little. My husband read that ear-nibbling is what puppies do to their litter-mates as playing/affection.
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