GSD ear position? - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-30-2014, 12:43 AM Thread Starter
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GSD ear position?

What does it mean if your Gsd always has her ears back around you? They do stick up.. just not around my husband. She loves him to death and nearly explodes when he gets home from work.. so its not a dislike thing.. I think?
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-30-2014, 01:22 AM
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It shows submission - and is an appropriate way for your GSD to greet someone above her in the pack - that she does not do it with you does not mean that she is not submitting to you. Probably more relaxed and comfortable with you since I'm guessing you are home with her during the day?

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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-30-2014, 01:29 AM Thread Starter
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If anything she listens to me more.. my husband is her man crush. I swear she's waiting for me to die so she can be his new mate.

I'm glad its not a bad thing tho.

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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-30-2014, 01:43 AM
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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-30-2014, 01:45 AM
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Same in my situation, my 9 month male gsd does the same with me but not with my wife..He would not leave me for a single second when I am home.

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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-30-2014, 01:56 AM Thread Starter
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Does he drive himself crazy trying to protect you? If I take Luna out.. she's totally normal and friendly. A breeze of a dog. But if Ryan comes along she tries to eat anyone who gets to close. Dogs more so. We have her in training for it. It makes me sad she drives herself crazy with worry for his safety when were out.

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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-30-2014, 02:02 AM
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Does he drive himself crazy trying to protect you? If I take Luna out.. she's totally normal and friendly. A breeze of a dog. But if Ryan comes along she tries to eat anyone who gets to close. Dogs more so. We have her in training for it. It makes me sad she drives herself crazy with worry for his safety when were out.

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How old is she? This sounds more like resource guarding than protection - basically, she has claimed Ryan as her possession and is guarding him from others - like a dog would guard a bone or toy. Glad you have her in training for it, but Ryan will have to step up the leadership role and let her know that HE decides who he is allowed to interact with, people or other dogs, not her.

Resource guarding to me is a break-down in pack structure - Ryan will have to step in and let her know that this behaviour is not allowed - Luna does not get to make decisions on her own like that. That is your and Ryan's job, and she has to look to you guys and defer to YOUR decisions about the pack.

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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-30-2014, 02:22 PM Thread Starter
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Luna is 8 months old. She started this behavior at 5 months. She used to be fine. Wed take her to the dog beach and she and Ryan would run and play and have a grand old time. But when she was 5 months everything changed dramatically. She stopped playing and started running circles around Ryan, snapping at any dog that got too close (not actually biting, just making loud jaw snap sounds at them) and barking loudly at any person who dared get near. Needless to say we can't dog park anymore.
She's an angel at home. Aside from all her energy and not being aware that she's huge and weighs 60 pounds haha. But as soon as Ryan takes her out of the fence.. she's turns into a big mess. We tried to handle it ourselves, but after she chased two joggers, nipping at their heels, I nearly gave myself an aneurism trying to find a trainer as fast as possible for fear that my husbands baby might bite someone and he'd have to say goodbye.

She's doing better, but I doubt shell ever be relaxed about Ryan out and about.

Would bringing a calmer dog for her to play with into the family help? When I was having severe.. severe.. anxiety issues with my chihuahua, a calmer friend for him really solved a lot of his issues. Would that be something that might help her too? I'll try most anything at this point.

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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 01-30-2014, 03:00 PM
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Very interesting behavior - this is extreme resource guarding of a person for such a young dog . Brian HAS to take on a leadership role with her, that is how she can relax and stop this. What is your trainer saying about this? Is Brian the one doing the work with her, training, etc?

Lucia


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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-25-2015, 04:08 PM
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I know this is an old post, but a GSD's ears being back doesn't always mean fear or submission. Often when walking or when they are trying to concentrate or focus the ears will angle back, but not be flattened against their heads. Casual walking the ears will be listening and moving more in response to myself and the environment, but move back and slightly apart when focused. Definitely not fear or submission as she loves this work and asks to do it often.
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