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Maverick1303 01-27-2014 12:16 AM

Socializing/ manners training for excited 2yr old
My 2yr old GSD Maverick is really sweet but his manners with other dogs (and sometimes people but that's for another thread) are not very good. On walks seeing another dog or hearing one anywhere close to him will make him very excited and he wants to immediately investigate and meet them. So pulling and sometimes barking and wining will happen. We got him when he was 1 and i wanted to socialize him as soon as possible but i don't know anyone who owns a dog remotely near his age and my parents were too timid to take him to the dog park so when he just turned two they gave in and we took him to a dog park. I took him on a long walk before entering but that changed nothing he was just as excited, we kept him on the leash the whole time so he wouldn't bother anyone, a lot of people there looked kind of annoyed that an inexperienced dog was around. Ok so the main problem is the way he introduces himself, first off he immediately goes face to face and if i don't make him turn around he will either start licking other dogs privates or (biggest problem) he starts to push down on the other dogs shoulders with his head and will begin to mount. So now he's been to the dog park 3 times on leash so i can correct the mounting. Is this the best thing? How can i fully socialize him with other dogs? He likes to play and have fun and has had good experiences with relatives dogs who were older. Just want to know what is the best thing to do about this, sorry for the long post just and i really appreciate any amount of help you can give, Thanks!

David Winners 01-27-2014 01:40 AM

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So, he's fine with dogs away from the dog park, but he gets over excited in the dog park.

Stop going to the dog park. Work on proper behavior with familiar dogs as to keep him from becoming over excited.

You go to the dog park for you, not your dog. There are plenty of ways to exercise him without going to a place where bad behaviors are allowed to be practiced.

David Winners

MaggieRoseLee 01-27-2014 10:14 AM

I'd only go to the dog park because you won't be able to control the other dogs AND your dog if they run up suddenly.

Have you purchased a Gentle Leader HARNESS? Huge help to guide and get control of the front of the dog more easily.

Plus I'd be looking around for some great dog classes. May need a few privates initially so the instructor knows what to expect. It seems like just uncontrolled excitement so with you learning what you need to learn to guide this, I bet you will have this much better WITH HELP!

good luck!

Maverick1303 01-27-2014 06:33 PM

First off, thanks! second the gentle lead does look like it will be good but i use my skateboard when i walk him because he has so much energy, also i don't know anyone who has a dog big enough to play with him so classes will be my best bet i guess.

mickeyroyalty 01-27-2014 08:31 PM

Group classes are good. My 10month old is full of energy too. However she is very good with other dogs. You describe mounting behavior, which is a dominant act. It would be better the have Maverick with the same dogs frequently, so he gets to know them. I go to a dog class every week. We practice socialization in the beginning of the class, then stay, short leash, long leash, depending on the dogs level. The last 20 minutes they get free play, which is great for a high energy dog. The gentle leader is a god send for controlling the head, the pulling. Make sure he has a good solid sit and don't let him get close enough to mount another dog. You can greet another owner at 6 feet, put your dog in a sit. Talk to the human and slowly approach inch by inch. That is what we do in class and my energetic GSD is very good. Once he has his sit stay and down stay in place, take him to shopping centers. I got a year old male that had never been trained and he became a perfect gentleman. I took him to a shopping area every day for 15 minutes. The entire training took a full year, but at the end I could take that dog anywhere. I am repeating the same with Heidi, take her into banks, hardware stores, the post office, etc. There s nothing like a well trained GSD. Other wise people will be afraid of Maverick, which is not a good thing. BTW, Wolfgang was my first GSD, and I hired a professional trainer for 10 weeks, she came to my house every week and I would practice in between, and take him into public. One final thing, is he neutered? it would be a good idea and he is the right age. I am on GSD # 4 and have used the techniques I learned from the first trainer on all my dogs.

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