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jhu8 06-05-2014 05:44 PM

Growling randomly??
So has anyone experienced their Shepherd randomly start growing and barking for no reason? For example today, we fed him and gave him his food and went off. He gets very aggressive looking but I really don't think he will bite or anything. Also for example, at random times if you just approach him to pet him, he will go. I'd say 9 times out of 10 he's just fine, and loves it. But occasionally he goes off and it's pretty scary. We always ignore him when he does it and we try not to show fear. We've heard from internet sources and trainers that "fixing" him may help because it just has so much testosterone in him that's setting him off and making him unstable. Anyone have any ideas about this? He is about 1.5 years old.

lalachka 06-05-2014 05:46 PM

Growling randomly??
70 Attachment(s)
Fixing won't help at this point. If it would've helped it'd be if done around 6 months or before. That's IF it'd help.

I can't help with the rest of the question.

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carmspack 06-05-2014 05:53 PM

that has nothing to do with being reproductively whole.

don't try to pet him, change him , correct him.

some dogs bark at their food --- give it the old one , two .

jhu8 06-05-2014 06:11 PM


Originally Posted by carmspack (Post 5606874)
that has nothing to do with being reproductively whole.

don't try to pet him, change him , correct him.

some dogs bark at their food --- give it the old one , two .

How do you effectively correct a dog that is growling, barking, and showing it's teeth? They say not to yell at them. Then 5 minutes after laying down after the incident, he comes up to you wagging his tail and wanting you to pet him. It's definitely not him just barking at his food. I was hesitant to give that example because of that, but I did because it happened just this evening.

carmspack 06-05-2014 06:22 PM

I thought you were trying to pet him while he was eating.

Gretchen 06-05-2014 06:33 PM

I'd start with the vet and get a thorough check up to see if there is a physical/biological reason. I've never had a dog do this.

See if this website may help:

Calming Signals - The Art of Survival - Turid Rugaas - International Dog Trainer

jhu8 06-05-2014 06:44 PM


Originally Posted by carmspack (Post 5606978)
I thought you were trying to pet him while he was eating.

Oh no. Most of the time when this happens, he will just be laying there and we go to pet him and he goes off. This dog is a family member, sleeps in the beds with us occasionally, will join us on the sofa. He is very spoiled and loved. So it's not like he is scared of us and trying to warn us. Because like I said, a few minutes after he cooled down, he almost acts as if he feels bad. Comes up to us wagging his tail, rubbing his head against us. It's just very weird. My mom wants to get him fixed because of reading several articles on the internet regarding this problem an the high levels of testosterone running through his system. Just not sure what to do. It's like he's bipolar. Perhaps this will go away when he gets a little older? Or is this maybe a result of a traumatic event from when he was a puppy(he was attacked by another dog in the vet and had to get stitches)? Just very frustrating because he's a very loving dog. It's just these random moments he has that are scary.

SBS 06-05-2014 07:24 PM

I think some dogs are just wired different. I had a Rot that was the most stuburn, irritable dog I have ever dealt with. He would growl when I pet him, Show his fangs when I clipped his nails, washed him, or brushed his coat. As hard as I tried, I was never able to fix this. Luckily he was all show and no go. I kept that dog 13 1/2 years, and never once did he ever cause anyone problems.

I almost think it was a game for him, As his owner He never once scarred me. Honestly, I miss that old stuburn fool. That dog truly challenged all my training abitlities, by the time he was 6, he was near perfect, except when cliping his nails, giving him baths, or brushing his coat.

I think he was lucky to get me, and I was also lucky to have him. He probably wouldn't have lasted in every situation.

gsdsar 06-05-2014 07:25 PM

234 Attachment(s)
He is spoiled. He sleeps in your bed, he picks when he wants affection.

Stop that.

Make him work for things. NILF. Hardcore.

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Chip18 06-05-2014 07:45 PM

I'll assume a medical issue has been ruled out? If that's the case...I would say first I'm not shy in offering advice! :)

But I don't like this! The best advice is to seek counsel from a qualified, certified trainer/behaviourist experienced in GSD's! Get someone to get eyes on the dog!

Next best advise is to chalk it up as a loss and contact a GSD rescue group! Manage the dog so that he does not have an opportunity to bite the crap out of someone in either case!

That's the best advice! Now having said that!:)

Currently with this dog, no be no sofa privileges period! He knews to know his place!

I never used a crate myself...but this is a dog that calls for one! I would retool and start over:
Treat him like a rescue you just got start here:

I just got a rescued dog – what do I do? | stickydogblog
and here:
Leerburg Dog Training | The Groundwork to Establishing Pack Structure with Adult Dogs

And if that all works out then here is what I would do with a normal dog! Not sure if you have that???
But post 8:

And this:
I have never done it, never had the need but for this dog I would do it.

Then when he behaves like one would expect all the usual stuff would apply post 8:

It is what "I" would do but I'am also willing to pay the consequences if "I" screw up! But I'm not willing to put others in harms way!

So you have what "I" would do and what I "recommend!" First choices are safest choices! :)

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