8mo old BITING butt and hands social aggression, playful but getting worse - German Shepherd Dog Forums

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Old 10-22-2012, 07:15 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default 8mo old BITING butt and hands social aggression, playful but getting worse

My 8 mo old male neutered shepherd nips and bites and it's getting worse. Here's what it looks like: Often when I'm walking he comes behind me and bites my butt and hands. It is more like an open mouthed lunge than a bits. He doesn't necessarily clamp down. However it can be painful with those sharp teeth. It is like he is being defiant and pkaying at same time. He KNOWS this is not acceptable behavior. I'm concerned because it's gettin worse not better. Yesterday my husband was cleanin somethin off the floor. Thor thought he was playing and did an open mouth lunge. His tooth hit my husbands eyebrow and made it bleed!!!

Here's what we've tried: pinch collar, muzzle shakes, ignoring (tough when he won't stop. Is ignoring appropriate for this?), negative experience of sticking fingers down throat, and wrapping hands around muzzle with firm "no", and redirecting him with a command and praising when obeyed.

Nothing seems to be making things better!!! Please help!!! Is this just a phase? I feel owned by my dog.


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Old 10-22-2012, 07:18 PM   #2 (permalink)
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if he knew it was not acceptable behavior he wouldn't do it

He's still young and sounds like a bratty teenager looking for attention..Any attention is better than no attention

one thing you haven't mentioned, how much physical exercise, out in the real world experience is he getting? Also you didn't mention obedience classes which are a great way to learn how to respond to unwanted behaviors ..
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Old 10-22-2012, 07:23 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Yes! I forgot to mention exercise. Yesterday when this was really bad. He had so much attention and exercise. We were outside with himbrittneypunt@gmail.com all day. Plenty of fetch and attention all day long!!! That's what's so confusing to me. It's more than boredom.

As for obedience classes, I've read books and do research all the time. We live out in country. No training resources within a 100 miles.


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Old 10-22-2012, 07:25 PM   #4 (permalink)
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How about some chew bones, something to occupy the mind as well? He may just be as I said, teenage butt head stage. And then you can have ones who get soooo overstimulated they are like kids who are overtired and need a nap..Crate him for a bit when he gets over the top.
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Old 10-22-2012, 07:40 PM   #5 (permalink)
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In addition to the other advice: leash him inside and reward him for appropriate behavior so he learns to be a follower instead of an 8 month old brat. Tons of exercise alternated with crate time and last but not least: NILIFF treatment.
WD is also 8 months old. He just stood by me as I am writing this, nipping my jeans with his little teeth and looking for my response. He hasn't had a lot of exercise due to a sore foot.
I envision him as an old dog and I know I will miss today.
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Old 10-22-2012, 08:03 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
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He KNOWS this is not acceptable behavior.
How do you know he knows? I think Jakoda is probably right that he doesn't really know that he's acting inappropriately. After all, he is still doing it.

Have you done any work on impulse control? I like to make my dogs sit or down before I throw the ball for them, and jumping up and trying to grab toys out of my hand is a big no no. If you haven't already, impose some rules on your playtime.

Does he get attention when he's being bad? How about when he's NOT being bad? Often we're all over our dogs when they're doing something we don't like, which is reinforcing it with our attention. Obviously, we can't always ignore them when they're being bad, but if your dog is amped up and out of control sometimes the best thing is for you to do the opposite and be calm and still, waiting for him to wind down - show him that that's the way to "make" you interact with him.

And we often ignore the other side of the equation, which is to reinforce the kind of behavior that we DO want. It may not come naturally, but try to make a point of acknowledging him when he's being "good", and give him attention and praise for it, like if he's quietly playing or chewing a bone on his own.
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Old 10-22-2012, 08:54 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mbpunt View Post
My 8 mo old male neutered shepherd nips and bites and it's getting worse. Here's what it looks like: Often when I'm walking he comes behind me and bites my butt and hands. It is more like an open mouthed lunge than a bits. He doesn't necessarily clamp down. However it can be painful with those sharp teeth. It is like he is being defiant and pkaying at same time. He KNOWS this is not acceptable behavior. I'm concerned because it's gettin worse not better. Yesterday my husband was cleanin somethin off the floor. Thor thought he was playing and did an open mouth lunge. His tooth hit my husbands eyebrow and made it bleed!!!

Here's what we've tried: pinch collar, muzzle shakes, ignoring (tough when he won't stop. Is ignoring appropriate for this?), negative experience of sticking fingers down throat, and wrapping hands around muzzle with firm "no", and redirecting him with a command and praising when obeyed.

Nothing seems to be making things better!!! Please help!!! Is this just a phase? I feel owned by my dog.


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Please stop these things. If things are as you say... and the dog feels in control, someone's going to get bitten. How much time EACH DAY do you spend training, walking, hiking, etc. this dog? What are you doing to stimulate his mind? How much time does he spend in a crate to have 'chill time'? Bored shepherds get into trouble. Punishing him with prong collars, grabbing his muzzle, etc. won't do much for you. He needs redirection into things that are fun for him to do to get his mind and body stimulated and tired.
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Old 10-22-2012, 09:08 PM   #8 (permalink)
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OP, I hate to say it, but all the rough attention he got from the mouthing probably reinforced it. Grabbing him, shoving your hand in his mouth, shaking him...those can be really fun times for physical dogs like GSD puppies. I'd get some bitter apple from the pet store and rub it on the exposed flesh to make him change his mind about how much fun it is to play with it. And a firm "NO", minus all the physical contact, every time.
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Old 10-22-2012, 11:51 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I can really relate. I have learned that the only thing that drains her is playing with other dogs. Also learning Appropriate tugging game. She will be calm and mellow for the rest of the day. Sasha now has great days and some bad days. She is nine months now and has greatly improved from the previous month. Good luck obedience classes, patience and play dates and of course off leash play.
A good dog is a tired dog


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Old 10-23-2012, 12:38 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Jakota, yes to everythin and positive attention.

Jag, Each day I'd say he gets an hour to 2 hours of exercise consisting of fetch, find the bone outside, and just plain runnin around outside. We live in country. He doesn't leave the yard. He is an indoor dog. We work full time during the week. So he stays in mud room with his kennel door open. This can be 8 hours a day 5 days a week. Sometimes less. Sometimes one of us comes home for lunch. I always have bones for him and chew toys. Some are always available (like his stuffed animals). Bones he has to work for. So when we are home we don't use the crate much as he has already been hangin in mud room for the day. Wish it wasn't this way but it is what it is.

So if everything I'm doing is wrong, what's right. Seems all even the days with lots of fun things and mental and physical stimulation don't change the biting and acting in control. So then what?
And of course he has good moments and days, but I'm nor as concerned about those..


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