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Old 07-25-2014, 06:57 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Weird behavior

We noticed last week that whenever my husband exits through the front door, Maverick would start jumping around and look uneasy. He would bark once or his mouth would puff out like he wants to bark. Both ears are up (even the floppy one). What does this mean? We thought maybe, because he's used to us going through the garage door, that he thought this is not normal behavior for us. Or maybe he is warning my husband that this is where strangers/guests come in. Has anyone seen this is their GSD?
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Old 07-25-2014, 07:35 PM   #2 (permalink)
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It sounds like when your husband leaves through the 'wrong' door, it makes your pup anxious. Dogs like stability and normal. I'd have your husband and you walk your pup through this door several times a day till it realizes that going through any exits in your home doesn't mean anything to you...so it shouldn't mean anything to your pup.

IMO - here's why. To your dog, your front door means something to be worried about. If you guests come through that door, your dog is going to always associate your guests as being an event to be worried about. You want to show your dog that guests are a non-event, therefore the door is a non event. Using your husband as a training tool is a great advantage!

Side note - sometimes 'huffing' like that means the dog is trying to take in as much air scent as he can. Or it could be small half barks. Watch him next time and see if he's trying to take in scent or trying to vocalize. Kinda interesting.

Gotta give you kudos for explaining his behavior as well as you did. It's refreshing to see a person wanting to understand why the dog is behaving the way it is, instead of just wanting to change the behavior.
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Old 07-26-2014, 12:53 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Your explanation makes a lot of sense. He does seem more anxious just by his change of posture. From relaxed to supremely alert and jumping all over. Oh, and the huffing is a half bark. We will walk him through the front door more often until he doesn't get anxious anymore. Thanks!
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