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Old 04-15-2014, 08:09 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default 7 Month Old German Shepherd Bad Behavior

My 7 month old west working line black German shepherd, Nayru, has turned into quite a naughty dog in the past couple of weeks. She has never been bad with chewing or destroying things but it seems like as of late she will literally destroy everything at any opportunity she gets. Her favorite thing is to shred paper, but she will also chew pens, dig up the yard, destroy stuffed animals and get stuffing everywhere, and eat my daughters toys. She is very active and runs 2 miles every day with me, we also go hiking on the weekends, the dog park for 1 hour every Saturday, plays fetch, and participates in obedience training. She listens to commands well and we have corrected her every time she destroys something. She always acts extremely guilty and remorseful when she is scolded, and we have tried bitter apple spray and have bought her tons of toys to play with as an alternative but thus far nothing has worked. The vet said this is something she will grow out of and at this point I can't wait for that day to come. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
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Old 04-15-2014, 08:19 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Go back to puppy monitoring 101. When you are in the house with her, tether her to your side with a 6 foot lead or gate her in a limited space with you (in the living room while you are watching TV, in the kitchen while you wash dishes, etc.) When you cannot either tether her or gate her to keep an eye on her, crate her. The annoyance of having to work on limiting her options is worth keeping her from practicing those bad behaviors. It will be much easier to keep her from practicing bad habits now than it will be to try to break them later. Keep up your exercise and obedience routine.

If you don't already, try portioning her day's worth of food into a bag and having her work for it in small sessions throughout the day. It will help keep her engaged with you, give her an incentive to stop practicing those bad behaviors, and give you a quick way to reward good behaviors.
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Old 04-15-2014, 08:24 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Provide her with a variety of chewable items that will massage her teeth in different ways.

But gutting stuffed animals, especially when they have a squeaker seems to be the object of this awesome game. Don't leave the stuffed animals laying around at this point. One day I told Cujo, if you chew it up, I will have to throw it in the garbage can. And that did it, he kept that stuffed toy intact.

You can try toys without stuffing.
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Old 04-15-2014, 09:25 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Something went wrong, somewhere? Not a big fan of "they will grow out of it" myself.

Maybe if you catch here doing "something bad again" snatch it "BAD DOG" and a Down and Stay for 15 minutes??

You have to make the bad behaviour a miserable experience, apparently a brief corrections is not getting the point across? Maybe a long stay and down will?
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Old 04-19-2014, 07:08 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Our 18 week pup likes some digging in the yard. I let her have some fun, I'll fill the holes in later on. She likes to shred paper some too, minor.

The bottom line is provide the chew toys and crate when you have to step away. Our dog mostly knows what she's allowed to chew on. It may be about impossible to remove all the puppy behavior from a pup.
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Old 04-19-2014, 10:49 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chip18 View Post
Something went wrong, somewhere? Not a big fan of "they will grow out of it" myself.

Maybe if you catch here doing "something bad again" snatch it "BAD DOG" and a Down and Stay for 15 minutes??

You have to make the bad behaviour a miserable experience, apparently a brief corrections is not getting the point across? Maybe a long stay and down will?
I agree with the above post. It sounds like the dog is getting enough exercise and stimulation the dog needs to be corrected in a more reactive manner whereas the - dog remembers the incident, training, training, training, training training this dog that you have is no easy task - it's breed to destroy.

Hone it !
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Old 04-19-2014, 11:59 AM   #7 (permalink)
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You have to make the bad behaviour a miserable experience, apparently a brief corrections is not getting the point across? Maybe a long stay and down will?

you cannot scold a dog out of chewing things at this stage
well at any stage really
but you can redirect and supervise and prevent things from happening
all dogs of all breeds enjoy chewing and destroying or ripping things up
this does not change or go away
one must modify the environment instead

it is far easier to teach a dog what to do than what not to do
op since what you are doing is not working than do something different
rather than perpetually scold her all day

supervision supervision supervision and redirection and more supervision
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Old 04-22-2014, 05:47 PM   #8 (permalink)
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What about give the dog a job? I heard gsd are working dogs, and if they don't feel like they have a job they can act out by chewing things up, or dig holes, even act bad. Just a suggestion. I only have a pup, so I haven't been there. It might help.

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Old 04-22-2014, 07:12 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Chewing is a sign of a boredom, unless she chews because she cannot stand being left alone (you don't describe the circumstances). I agree - she needs a work to focus on. It is good that you exercise her properly, high energy needs to find some way to escape, but that is not enough. She needs something which will drain her emotionally. I suggest you to look for Schutzhund club. Exhausting tracking, emotional bite play and Schutzhund obedience course would definitely change her. She would start to wait for it. And, you don't have to commit yourself to Schutzhund, you may continue at something very different. But you will meet people there who will help you to recognize your dog's special talents.
Meanwhile - provide her with raw beef bones, really large ones like the whole thigh bone. It is good for her teeth and stomach anyway.
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