Hoping you all may have some advice...
Leo is just shy of 10 months old and already 85 pounds. Since we got him at 10 weeks he's been the most calm and gentle pup I've ever been around. We used to hear comments daily about how people thought he was an old dog who never grew into his body because they couldn't believe he was that calm of a pup at 6 months and younger.
Then at 8 months this changed. His demeanor is still gentle and loving but I would best describe him as a bumbly teenager with raging hormones. He has no clue how big he is, frequently trips over his 3.5 inch wide paws, jumps around like a little kid after eating a big piece of cake, and LOVES the ladies. He will follow a female dog around the park for hours, absolutely zoned in on her with a big doofy grin on his face; licking her face any time she stands still. This all is funny to me and doesn't bother me in the slightest. He's learning to be an adult dog and isn't neutered and so I am sure his hormones are running rampant like ours all were at some awkward point in our lives.
I've taken him to the dog park an average of 4 times a week since the first time he was cleared post-shots to go. He ADORES dogs and people. When playing with one dog alone he is the nicest pup you will ever see; in fact, he always plays more of a submissive role over any other type of role - frequently running under the legs of people nearby. If a dog gets aggressive with him, he runs away immediately to find a nicer dog to play with and then spends the rest of the time looking over his shoulder to ensure that he keeps his distance from the aggressive dog.
But when in a group? Here is where the problem lies...
If two or more dogs are happily playing together, he stops dead in his tracks, ZONES IN, and rushes to who he thinks is the most submissive dog, where he promptly chomps down on their neck. His larger than-life-tail waves madly and he has a big goofy grin on his face, which shows every time he pulls away. But the chomp is very aggressive. I know he's not out to hurt the dog and I can tell that he is in play mode. But with how big he's gotten so fast, and some people's pre-conceived notions of GSDs, this act usually ends up in an owner yelping and calling foul, which then makes this giant loppy puppy who has been playing nice all day seem like a vicious attack dog. When I separate him and make him "sitz", he stares at the submissive dog with a giant smile and a very focused and unbroken stare. Once this scenario play out even one time, it's time to go home because history shows that he is now obsessed with the more submissive dog and and will follow it around and continue his strange attack any time another dog gets near. On the very rare occasion that we actually stay and the submissive dog gets left alone by the others, Leo turns right back into his playful and submissive self.
Is my dog destined to be a gang member?!