In addition to the kids, we also have two black labrador retriever mut puppies. If you are unfamiliar with black labs, they have ridiculous amounts of energy. Ours also had a tendency towards nipping. Not biting hard, mind you, just playful little grabs made with their teeth.
Needless to say "playful little grabs" are not allowed when you have a toddler in the house.
So, J and I acquired the habit of shouting "No Biting". I realize that shouting at the dogs is a bad thing, but new parents tend to be rather protective. When C went through his biting phase, we used it with him as well. Apparently, there are few events more painful than when a nursing baby decides to take a bite.
Now we have to flash forward to when C was just beginning to be able to talk. He was able to say "dad" (of course), and a few other words, but that was about it. His grandmother was holding him, and when she shifted hands, she inadvertantly scratched him. It didn’t draw blood or anything but it sure surprised him.
He pointed at Nana and shouted (very clearly) "No Nana! No Biting! No! Biting! No Biting!"
I don’t think I’ve ever seen such a combination of guilt, chagrin, and surprise as I saw on Nana’s face that moment. She looked at us rather helplessly, "I didn’t! I didn’t!"
Nana, if you’re reading this: yes, we knew you didn’t bite him. Really.
I’m glad you’re in a happy place, now, D! I’ll keep reading if you keep blogging over here. I had to get current, today, and I really liked the story about Percy the train at B&N. I can also picture the face Nan must have made when she was chastised about biting. My niece did something similar, but to my cat, instead of her grandmother (I don’t think she has it in her to chastise my Mom…I don’t think anyone does!) My niece was visiting all tha animals in my living room, sharing her charms (interpretation: pulling on tails, tweaking ears, and making them run for cover.) Well, when she got to Jez, she tried for the big, fluffy tail. And Jez whipped around, hissing, & batted at her. My neice looked startled; my sister jumped up to defend her; I jumped up to defend my cat; and my niece yelled at the top of her voice, “Bad Kitty! Bad Kitty! No Dog food for you!” Jez looked just as startled as the rest of us; I think because my niece had just revealed her secret love of dog food.