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Old 11-21-2012, 12:13 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Frankly, I think the vet was frightened of him or generally disinterested. We are "between" vets right now (ours moved) and we were unfamiliar with this one. He showed little interest in speaking about the issue and just mentioned that shepherds are notorious "fear biters".

The biggest concern is whether or not he is a risk to the child. I'll speak with my husband about the situation.

The stories and advice are appreciated. The more the better.
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Old 11-21-2012, 12:16 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Family Paws-New parent classes dog and baby
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Old 11-21-2012, 12:28 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RebeccaMac View Post
Frankly, I think the vet was frightened of him or generally disinterested. We are "between" vets right now (ours moved) and we were unfamiliar with this one. He showed little interest in speaking about the issue and just mentioned that shepherds are notorious "fear biters".

The biggest concern is whether or not he is a risk to the child. I'll speak with my husband about the situation.

The stories and advice are appreciated. The more the better.
Doesn't sound like this vet likes GSDs. I would shop around a bit. Any vet that stereotyped my breed would be history Any dog that has been through such harsh changes all at once is going to be on edge... doesn't take high education to have sensitivity to that. A vet should understand at least a little about general behaviour like this...
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Old 11-21-2012, 02:03 AM   #14 (permalink)
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As always, the two week shut down is a **rude term removed by ADMIN** waste of time and I never recommend it.

I wouldn't expect him to be dealing well with the sudden change just yet and would give him a few days of letting him settle in. Best thing you can do is take him out for long and frequent walks to help him with his stress, take off some of his energy, and bond with you. Be gentle and quiet with him, but do be very consistent with what limits you decide to set with him.

I would keep him separate from your child for a few days too until he settles down and then keep the child quiet and still so he has time to get used to her. Be very sure to supervise closely.

If he's still like this after a couple of weeks, then I would reassess and consider returning him.

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Old 11-21-2012, 02:10 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Whether you want to call it a two week shut down or something else, I agree with the others about taking it slow and easy, giving the dog a stable routine, and working on quiet bonding and avoiding overwhelming the dog with too many new situations.

Some good advice all around. Takes a looooooonnnngggg time sometimes for the real personality of a new adoptee to come out.
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Old 11-21-2012, 10:50 AM   #16 (permalink)
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Yet you then say
Quote:
the two week shut down is a **** waste of time
That is your opinion but what's interesting is then you go on to recommend, basically, a "shut down", whether you want to call it such or not.

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would give him a few days of letting him settle in.
Quote:
would keep him separate from your child for a few days
Quote:
take him out for long and frequent walks to help him with his stress,
Um...this is the "two week shut down". Maybe two weeks is longer than you have in mind but that transition time is usually necessary to avoid things like what have already occurred.

Done properly, the dog is merely crated instead of let wander around which will accomplish all the above. The dog, in between crating, is taken out, walked (alone), let play in the yard, etc. (with a leash on which is a great idea anyway).

Dogs should never be brought straight from a shelter and then have all these things thrown at them.
They don't know who you are, and you don't know how they'll react to different situations.

The "two week shut down" is to give them a sense of 1) how your home works, 2) your relation with your family and other pets in the home, and 3) that you are indeed the leader and that will lead to 4) a trust and faith in you so when things start going weird (family comes over) they look to you for guidance.

Right now this dog has no idea who is good, bad, who should be let in the house, etc.
The two week shut down will give him that groundwork necessary to become a member of your household and not become a neurotic basket case as he is already now.

That he's already failed so miserably only serves to further justify and solidify the fact he needs the shut down.

Last edited by lhczth; 11-23-2012 at 11:33 AM. Reason: deleted previous editing from quote
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Old 11-22-2012, 10:43 AM   #17 (permalink)
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The poor dog is totally overwhelmed and overstimulated. He needs to be exposed to new situations gradually. German shepherds are a herding breed so the nipping and herding is hardwired in them and may require management.
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Old 11-22-2012, 11:03 AM   #18 (permalink)
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I highly recommend the two-week shutdown as described by msvette.

However, I think we ought to find a different name for this method, as "shutdown" sounds so harsh, when the process is about the safety and well-being of the DOG as well as the family.
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Old 11-22-2012, 11:05 AM   #19 (permalink)
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Quote:
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I highly recommend the two-week shutdown as described by msvette.

However, I think we ought to find a different name for this method, as "shutdown" sounds so harsh, when the process is about the safety and well-being of the DOG as well as the family.
I'd agree some folks take offense, apparently, to the name, without even bothering to read the procedure though.
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Old 11-22-2012, 05:47 PM   #20 (permalink)
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So we took 6 MONTHS of just us and our family. We mostly did not have folks over, but if we did Mason was crated in another room with the door closed. He is SUPER friendly and well adjusted and I still insisted that it be all about us, our home and our expectations. I wanted there to be no doubt in his mind how our home works. We are now branching out to organized classes (we did home training, hikes, etc- just the focus was always new dog and family only) and other people entering our world. I think I have a pretty happy, well adjusted dog. Beast had the same 6 month focus period and it served him well too. My kids were even younger then....Girl was 2 when he arrived. It takes time consistency and commitment but the payoff is very worth it!
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