While this seems extremely fun for my dog (just one out of my three dogs loves the water hose) and me, it can get a little bad when I don't want to play and I just want to wash my car or water my plants.

A couple of months into my puppy's life we noticed that he would bite the water from the hose when we were using it, and while I did consider it was pretty funny at the time; I also noticed that he got a little fixated on biting the water and wanting to get wet.

My pup is what appears to be a mix of Boxer, Pitbull with a hint of Shar Pei I suppose (he's got a very wrinkled face)... he's the smallest of the pack (7 months), he shares our house with two female dogs, they are all fixed. He's really the only hyperactive one (even at his age more so than my other two dogs).

My question:

How could I teach him to not bite the water? The problem is that if he doesn't bite the water he'll start to bite the hose as I drag it.

I've tried to leave him inside the house, but he'll just whimper a bit and wish he was outside making a mess with the hose. I've tried to put him on a leash tied to a post while I do my stuff outside, but I get the same reaction.

So, I wouldn't mind it if he knew when to stop or not do it unless I allow it. I'm looking to see if someone has a training method or psychology I can use to try to correct this behavior; I've successfully trained him in many other things, but the hose is one of those things that just gets him going nuts out of control.

Not my dog, but an example of what's going on: A dachshund's poor reaction to a hose

  • 1
    I had this exact behavior with my late dachshund. He was obsessed with spraying water and would bite / eat the spray. We could never use the hose. He would drink fast-flowing until he inflated and bloated with water, and even then he wouldn't stop. We went to a water park once with him and he wouldn't leave this one spot where water sprayed out of the ground. People thought it was cute, but I had to stop him and we had to leave; he was obsessed and making himself ill.
    – JoshDM
    Commented Nov 5, 2013 at 20:26
  • Yeah, it sucks that I haven't found middle ground with it yet, I don't tolerate it because I figured it would make him pretty sick if he kept swallowing too much water so now he's not allowed outside when the hose is on :( ... until I can find middle ground with him on it. Thank you for editing the question typos and grammar issues.
    – sulfureous
    Commented Nov 5, 2013 at 20:57
  • Mine was violent about it; he ferociously attacked the spray. He'd scream (a very high, long bark) at high repetitions at the back door if he even knew the hose was on, and turned on "murder mode" when he saw it. He was the sweetest dog (photos are in chat), but I have one where looks like a monster; it was taken when the hose was in the air above him (and lightly out of photo scope), so it just looks like a crazed hound. I'll post it later.
    – JoshDM
    Commented Nov 5, 2013 at 21:40
  • I know it could be considered cruel, but have you attempted to spray him down, everytime he tries to attack the water? If it becomes unpleasant for him he may stop.
    – n00b
    Commented Dec 17, 2013 at 22:16
  • Hi @n00b ... I don't think it's cruel, it's just water, however, he doesn't seem to think it's cruel either, matter of fact; he loves it!... so yeah, even if he's drowning with the water, if the nozzle is on shower, jet, full... doesn't matter, he digs it too much. I live in the desert so we have extreme heat or cold climate, and I was thinking that by the time it got cold the water was not going to be so cool. Wrong!. He likes the cold water too. However, since I posted this question, he has calmed down a bit with that, but it's still an issue.
    – sulfureous
    Commented Dec 18, 2013 at 4:02

3 Answers 3


About the only way I know of to deal with this problem is through conditioning.

Unfortunately, that topic is too huge to thoroughly handle in an answer. However, this site is a great reference.

The basic idea is to train your dog not to react to the hose though exposure to the stimulus, in this case water spraying from the hose, and then punish behavior that is not desired, but reward behavior that is desired. What works and does not work often varies by dog, and ideally you want to use the method that causes the least amount of stress to your dog.

Another option would be to use progressive reinforcement training. This is really just a type of conditioning, but many trainers believe that it is a type of less stressful conditioning than some of the other options.

The most important thing to remember when training your dog is that you do not want to become your dog's opponent. If it becomes a contest of wills, your relationship with your dog will change, and could become unhealthy. Instead, try to work with your dog to keep both you and your dog on the same side.


My German shepherd would do this, and if I kept him inside he would do this girly high pitched bark and run from the back door to the window constantly.

So what I did to fix this, was I told him to lie down and stay in a place, outside where he's not in the way, while I'm watering the plants or hosing down his kennel. Then after I'm done using the hose I will spray him as his reward for staying where I left him. Waiting quietly out of the way, even if it's with a very intense look on his face.

This made it clear to him that playtime came after I was done using the hose, and he would get it if he just waited patiently enough.


My dog is shy and has anxiety problems.... but he loves the hose!!!!!! I have a trigger hose and I've been training him with it. When he obeys "sit" I let him chase the hose and say "get it". Then i moved on to sit and down, because he crouched naturally looking at the hose, he was rewarded with the hose (saying "get it"). The next step was to make him stay. I made him sit and down, then said stay. I'd squirt the hose and If he broke his stay, I'd turn it off instantly. If he waited until i said "get it" he got to play. The end game is making him sit and get down and stay while I'm watering the garden, with play time on command. It's been the best training method yet!! We are really bonding.

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