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Calling all dog owners
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28 May 2010, 19:48
Post Count: 242
Oh that's awesome. I really hope it works! Our babysitter just got a GS, and she's the sweetest, most beautiful dog! GS's really steal your heart, and I imagine giving him up would be SO hard! Good Luck!
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2 Jun 2010, 17:28
Endless Love
Post Count: 102
German Shepards are also naturally guard dogs. You already said it's strangers that he barks and growls at.. maybe he see's them as a potential threat.
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29 May 2010, 17:10
Post Count: 90
You can get a muzzle to help with the barking and prevent from biting, they don't hurt the dog. At a lot of the bigger pet stores they offer all day doggy day camp, which is where a trainer works with your dog one on one and brings them around the other dogs to socialize them as well. I was in class with a couple dogs that barked constantly at every single dog and person and sound! lol But it was ok to take them to class. Hopefully the trainer helps, but you should also look into a class with people and other dogs around so your dog gets used to both better. Good luck!
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30 May 2010, 15:10
Addicted to Craft
Post Count: 12
Here's what I think. You have an extremely anxious dog, which means he's going to freak when you leave, but also be aggressive to protect himself. Have you ever backed a dog into a corner? They'll snap at you to leave them be. Did the vet rule out any medical reasons? Dogs get a bit crazy when they don't feel well. Another thought is that you have a protective breed of dog, and that he is resource guarding. That can happen when he's on-leash. Is he constantly aggressive? Does he go after you or does he like your family and no one else? He may just be overly protective of all of you. Before you decide to give up this dog (which will most likely make him even more anxious and aggressive and the next owners will probably have to put him to sleep), try a few training sessions. If necessary, look up animal behaviorists and see if they will answer your questions via email. I'm not the greatest fan of Caesar Milan. Alpha rolling a dog will get most people mauled. There is a reason why his show has a disclaimer stating NOT to try any of his tricks at home. Look up Nothing In Life Is Free training. That may help with the separation anxiety. You start with 48 hours of social isolation, then you start training them from scratch. I've gotten wonderful results for my jack russell terrier mix and his resource guarding. Bottom line is definitely try the training, ANY training, and see what happens. I wouldn't suggest handing over a possibly aggressive dog to anyone else. You may end up wanting to decide about putting him down if the training doesn't work. Good luck!
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30 May 2010, 15:19
Post Count: 322
Vet has ruled out all medical reasons for the way he acts. There's absolutely nothing wrong with him, he is as healthy as can be. :)

He is only aggressive when there are strangers around him. If it's people that he sees on a frequent basis, he is fine with them. He might bark when he hears the door bell but as soon as he sees it's them, his tail wags and he relaxes and he is fine.

We spoke with a trainer last week. It's a bit more pricey than what we wanted, but we would take him to her and she would work with him non-stop for about 2 weeks. We would come down there at the end of that two weeks, learn all the training and techniques they have taught him, and then bring him back home and it would be basically maintaining the training here at home. He would be "calm" for him, but would follow commands better.

She also said that German Shepards have a VERY high energy level and that if that energy is NOT worn off, it will cause things like separation anxiety - it will cause him to be destructive etc. She said his mind is too busy for him, and that exercising him more frequently will take care of that. However, in order to walk him appropriately, we have to get the training taken care of - because at 18 weeks pregnant, I'm not going to walk a dog that walks me. lol
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31 May 2010, 00:13
Addicted to Craft
Post Count: 12
lol... yes, my lab walks me. I have him in a gentle leader which has helped tremendously. We've been training him to walk nicely on a leash including a dog trainer... and for the past 5 months... he still doesn't get it. We finally got the Gentle Leader. GS dogs are definitely high energy. Why not try a treat toy like a Kong, Tug a Jug or treat ball? That way he has to figure out how to get the treats out. Good luck with the bugaboo. Plug the tip of a kong with a dog treat then add some plain yogurt then freeze. Ninja LOVED that when he was younger. We'd give him the kong right before we left for work so he had something to do while we were out. GS dogs are great companions, but not when they think they're the boss of everyone! :)
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31 May 2010, 02:09
Post Count: 322
My Hubs and my daughter walked him tonight for a little while to see how he'd do. He attempted to growl at one of our neighbors once, and my Hubs said "NO" and he stopped. He was fine the rest of the walk.

We tried the Kong with him and he NEVER got into it. I was shocked. I thought they were amazing toys that most dogs love. He didn't. I have bought him a ton of toys, chew bones, etc.. I read that it can help to keep them entertained. He never chews or plays with them.
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31 May 2010, 13:17
.Blue Bella.
Post Count: 743
My dogs are too stupid for a kong. They just sit there and whine at it. Not worth it haha.

I hope the training goes well. It sounds like your best option. It is hard... maybe once he's done that training you can take him to a general obedience class for socialisation? Have you thought about getting him a playmate?
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31 May 2010, 14:35
Post Count: 322
Yeah, he doesn't really play. He never has. He gets too anxious when we leave.. the trainers are going to try to help us with that also.

We would love to get him a playmate, and it would take away a good chunk of the problem we're having - but we're limited to one dog right now because of the lease on our home. :(
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31 May 2010, 15:55
Post Count: 885
Hahah, my dogs hated the Kong. Then again, the only toys my dogs like are the ones that squeak and are filled with stuffing for them to rip out 8-|.
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31 May 2010, 19:05
& skull.
Post Count: 1701
my dog goes straight for his kong after he's had his meal. he likes to keep the chewing sensation going. it's funny. he's afraid to catch it thought because it got stuck in his mouth once. we also line the inside with vegemite, or shove bread in there sometimes to shut him up when company's over.
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