When 2 dogs space playing with each other, it deserve to be hard to number out even if it is you need to step in and also stop what looks to be aggressive behavior. This is specifically true if you uncover that the 2 dogs are biting at every other’s faces and also mouths when playing.

You are watching: Why do dogs nibble on each other

With the challenge being an extremely sensitive area, you can be worried that a dog’s eyes, mouth, and muzzle might involved harm – particularly if you space worried that the face-biting is done together a type of aggression. The good news is, you most likely don’t must worry.

Why do dogs bite every other’s faces? Face-biting is a reasonably normal actions in dogs and also is usually way a authorize of play. However, you should additionally be mindful that face and mouth-biting in dog can, in some cases, it is in a setting of aggression therefore watch because that tell-tale indications both before and also during play.

The vital in expertise why her dog could be biting one more dog’s mouth or challenge (or evil versa) is being able to pick up ~ above subtle behavioral cues and also body language that might indicate how the dog is feeling.

Today I wanted to aid shed part light ~ above what it way when a dog put its mouth about other dog’s face. It contains my check out on even if it is you should make a difference between a tiny mouthing or nibbling and also grabbing or shaking of the face and mouth area.

It offers an important insight right into the factors why dogs bite each other’s faces (according to what i have researched and also found).

Is it regular for dogs to bite each other’s faces?

If you come across dogs biting each other’s faces, you deserve to assume that it is for among two reasons; playtime or aggression. The is entirely normal because that dogs come bite at every other’s mouths favor this, and providing the is playful, you should not worry.

Whilst it might be difficult to know the difference at first appearance, an knowledge of her dog’s body language will certainly be may be to aid you call the difference and decide whether or not it is vital for you to intervene on the challenge biting and also mouth grabbing.

What playtime challenge biting watch like

The main way that dogs interact with each various other is through play fighting. This is an essential part of any dog maturing since it teaches them just how to usage bite inhibition, respect boundaries and also helps castle to understand when aggression is and isn’t appropriate.

This is why much more socialised dogs are simpler to train, because they effectively learn their own ‘social’ an abilities from connecting with one another. Actions favor chasing, wrestling, growling and face-biting space all component of this unauthorized play.

What it way when a dog place its mouth approximately other dog’s confront is usually simply down to play.

It is straightforward to see as soon as a dog is biting another dog’s face as part of playtime by researching their body language. If both dogs show up to it is in smiling, leaning right into the action, bowing to the other dog and also appear to it is in ‘frolicking’ and ‘bouncing’, you have the right to assume that any face and also mouth-biting is nothing much more than harmless horse – or ‘dogplay’!

What aggressive confront biting watch like

There are many reasons why her dog might be acting aggressively towards another dog. Few of the most common ones encompass feeling afraid, emotion territorial, gift overprotective over you or an additional human/dog or having misdirected aggression.

You deserve to tell face-biting in between dogs is aggression-based by considering few of the following signs: the dog is consistently being mounted, the dog is gift bodily hosted down and also the dog seems to be acquiring bitten roughly.

Handy Hint: If it’s a actual dog fight happening, below are advice on how you can break it increase safely without hurting yourself.

Further come this, the dog gift bitten may start exhibiting aversion techniques such as yelping, lie down, running to hide behind you or looking far from the various other dog.

Many owners describe aggressive mouth and face biting as a dog grabbing the various other dog and also shaking them.

If you doubt a dog is gift attacked, the is necessary to intervene instantly to protect against the danger of dogs getting injured. Execute not action in between them though; plenty of owners use the wheelbarrow an approach where girlfriend grab your dog’s rear legs and pull castle backwards.

Aggression and mouth biting might be a result of:

FearPainPossessivenessPrey drive

As owners it’s our obligation to make sure things don’t acquire to this point before it’s as well late, by looking for the signs where play turns to aggression.

The warning indications to look out for to signal things space just around to rotate nasty include:

Deep growling and also snarling starts.Teeth and also gums are on display.Hackles are increased on their backs.Sharp yelps the pain are heard.Staring with flattened ears.

If you check out these signs of aggression and also blood is apparent on the challenge or other locations of the dog, climate you should look to different both dog immediately and also work top top correcting the behavior.

How bite inhibition plays right into dog confront biting behavior

If you were wondering why a dog biting one more dog’s challenge during playtime isn’t a cause for concern, the price is simple: it’s all around your dog’s intelligent capacity to regulate the force of their mouth.

Indeed, the habitual biting action in dog is something the is rooted in them native a young age. A critical skill that a puppy will certainly pick up in ~ their first 12 main (with the help of your mother and also littermates) is something referred to as ‘bite inhibition’.

Bite inhibition, essentially, refers to a dog’s capacity to regulate the force of their mouthing.

Similar come babies, puppies have tendency to check out the world through your mouths. They’ll regularly engage in playfighting v their littermates, and it is v these formative, early days the playtime that they will discover bite inhibition.

They will be able to see from various other dogs’ reaction exactly how much biting is also much, and from there they will learn how to adjust the force of their challenge biting in contexts favor playtime accordingly. Castle will likewise do this v their person owners, consisting of play nose biting.

By discovering an instinctive skill favor bite inhibition, puppies room able to do things like bring items in your mouth there is no breaking them and also play with humans or other dogs without causing them any type of harm v biting, specifically the face and also head area.

They’ll learn to understand exactly how to change the pressure in which they usage their mouth depending upon the context they’re in. Because that example, her dog will certainly not lug a tennis round in your mouth through the same force they usage to chew a bone.

Consequently, if her dog is biting one more dog’s face as component of playtime, over there is no should worry about the various other dog getting hurt.

This is because your dog will be utilising their skills in bite inhibition come ensure that also if castle biting the other dog’s face, they are not biting the hard enough to break the skin or damage them.

Handy Hint: go you know that plenty of people think the bite force of a Chihuahua come be more than that of a Rottweiler, however just exactly how true is this?

How to protect against your dog native biting various other dogs’ faces and also mouths

If her dog is gift uncharacteristically aggressive, it is essential to take them come the vets immediately. Sometimes, a dog could start acting the end or being more aggressive than usual as a result of an underlying wellness issue.

You have the right to also try working through a dog trainer in order come curb some of your dog’s wild behaviour trends to help them act more socially around other dogs.

As a temporary solution, it is precious trying to different your dog from other dogs where feasible and to have them stay a muzzle in windy in order to prevent any kind of harm coming to one more dog’s means if your dog chooses to strike them.


The level the roughhousing, growling and also face nibbling connected can be both puzzling and also concerning because that a dog owner, together these behaviours room indicative that both a severe attack and harmless play.

There are countless reasons why dog bite each other’s faces. Because that the many part, that is nothing more than a little of playtime because that the dog involved. However, the is necessary to it is in vigilant and also to continue to be attuned to your dog’s body language simply in case things turn nasty.

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