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Hi Mike, I will give you the run down of our structure w/ him. He always sits & stays until we release him for food, treats, toys, to go out the door, most anything he does he works for. He is not allowed on any furniture. He is crated when we are not home. His fave thing to do to release a lot of his energy is to play fetch. He also sits, stays & releases for that. He always comes back to me listening to the drop it command. We play this everyday. He likes to chase everything, our cats, strange kids, this is obviously not good. With me throwing the ball I dont know if this is a good outlet for him, but he NEEDS to run. He also likes hanging from a rope we have on the kids playset & hanging from it, like playing tug w/ it. He does have chew toys which he uses mostly only in the evening. I fill kongs w/ peanut butter to keep him occupied for a little while. We never let him mouth us, ever. We always repromand him as soon as it starts. Just last night I had a 10 min. ongoing struggle w/ him, him biting me, play jumping, running around, coming back biting me. I must have grabbed his muzzle over 7 or 8 times w/ the no command, only for him to come right back @ me. It finally ended when I left the room for a min. came back in & he finally laided down w/ a chew toy for 10 min. then it started all over again. My kids will be on the couch minding their own buisness & he goes right up to them & starts biting @ their feet, hands, arms, whatever he can get. Please let me know if I’m doing something wrong, this bad habit needs to stop. Any other ideas for high energy outlets? Thanks, Wendi
Hey Mike, thanks for your input. It was nice to hear your positive side of things. I’ve had so many opinions thrown at me, including “just get rid of him.” That is not an option for my family. We are so in love w/ this dog that we will do whatever it takes to make it work. We are working hard on our pack structure. We are training hard w/ come, leave it & place, (thats a hard one!) When theirs little or no distractions this works, when hes pre occupied its more of a challenge to get him to focus on me. We had guests over last night, we told them before they got here briefly about whats been going on, so just to bare w/ us in our training when they arrived. I had him on lead when company arrived out in the yard, he was barking aggressively at them. I just kept him in a sit stay & told him no. My husband let them in the gate, I told the company to ignore him & just walk on by , I then released him out of a sit, but still kept him on lead w/ me. I walked him around the yard a little bit & once he was a little more relaxed, I let him say hello w/ me, then after about 10 min. let him off lead, he was great! Once they were socializing w/ us he seemed to let his guard down. There were no small children there last night, but this is a start for him to see that I am the boss. He was having a problem w/ anyone coming onto the property, so to see this improvement in one night was amazing! About the dog food, we have him on good stuff-lifes abundance, along w/ all kinds of good supplements, but I am looking into the fish oil. Again, thanks for your knowledge, I will keep you posted.
Hi Maureen, My gsd is not neutered, but I did make an appt. for early Oct. to have this done. After talking w/my breeder & trainer this is what I decided. It cant hurt & hopefully help w/ this problem. I am very aware of the breed, I have had them in my life for the last 12 yrs. I know what wonderful dogs they can be w/ the correct training & leadership. We are working very hard on obedience training & pack structure. This is a hard age for them coming into adulthood. So everyday we remind him whos boss, I just hope hes getting it?! When we do have people over we are being very safe about it & letting him know these people are ok. He seems to want to make that decision, which is what we are working on him not doing. Any tips on this? I have had a lot of suggestions & we are trying them all, any others would be helpful. Thanks, Wendi
Hi Chris, I do know what I have in my GSD. I have been blessed W/ them for the last 12 yrs. My dog I have know is the complete GSD, & along w/ a lot of good things, their are a few diffucult ones. As hes getting older he is by far becoming super protective of our family & home. He does do a lot better out of our yard/home. He is approachable w/ sm. children & people of all kinds. The exact way the situation was that day went like this, all 4 of my family members were outside along w/ 2 strangers who were going in & out by the driveway (we were having our well worked on) My dog was gated up on our deck when the little girl & her mom arrived. I was out in the driveway greeting them. I had asked my husband to let him off the deck because the mom wanted to see him. As he came bounding down off the deck we all walked in the yard together, he checked out the mom for a second, then his attention was on the little girl who was very scared, wrapping herself around her mothers legs in sort of like a circular motion, it looked as if my dog was trying to get to her to chase, check her out I dont know? She was also holding a plastic bag in her hand that he was trying to check out, after it all happened my husband said he thought he saw him go for the bag. He also has a fear issue, gets scared over the silliest things & objects. He just didnt like it & started barking frantically & went in towards her. The little girl said she felt him on her hand (no marks thank God) This makes me wonder about the bag? Anyway, I grabbed him very quickly while my husband ran over & put him inside telling him no, no, no! He put him in his crate. The only thing around was my family (my 2 kids who he adores) my husband & me. No food, toys or bed. But we were in the yard. This has never happened before. If it did I would have never had him out like that. The only other thing is back in july 2 sm. children were over & the one that was afraid kept on backing up from him & sort of running. He would try to get close to the child to check him out, but no barking or growling. I could tell my dog wasn’t that cool w/ it so I removed him. Just last night we were over our neighbors for a doggie playdate w/ 6 dogs, 6 people & 2 sm. children, all strangers to him. He was great! He had so much fun & could have cared less about the kids. I guess this sums up to be a terrotorial issue that w/ help we are working on. Please let me know what you think, I appreciate any feedback neg. or pos. I want to do whats best for my family, our dog & the people around us. Thanks wendi