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Old 01-27-2014, 12:16 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Can my GSD grow out of fear?

Hi? I'm a first-time GSD owner who has a 8-month-old male GSD, Lobo. I got him from a local breeder who claimed that he is from East-German (DDR) bloodline, when he was 10-week old. He has sable coat color which I really love.

Like other GSDs, he is very intelligent and calm. Unlike other GSDs, he is too friendly. Because of my kids and an one-year-old Chiwanee who was just adopted from a local shelter two weeks ago, I have no complaint about his soft personality. He is not aggressive at all. Even my neighbor's one-year-old Shih Tzu bites him from time to time, he just let it happen and seems not irritated at all. In a dog park, some dogs bite him while playing with him, and he allows it, too. He doesn't seem scared or frightened. Besides, he rarely barks. I know he can bark, but he doesn't, even if provoked by my kids. When he barks, that's when he wants something from me or when he wants to play with other dogs in sight. Even when he barks, he doesn't bark viciously at all. Last night, I saw him viciously barks for the first time, but it was immediately stopped by my family.

However, recently I have observed him tucking his tail between his tails when he encountered few, large dogs in the dog park. He seemed timid or frightened, if I didn't misinterpret him. I'm just wondering if he can grow out of this fear when he grows up. I don't want him aggressive but I want him confident. I don't know how to explain this mixed emotion. I'm very happy to see him friendly, but it is sort of unpleasant to see his tail between his legs. Isn't he a GSD? It contradicts that he has a DDR bloodline.

Some background Info:
He had grown normal up to 5 months, i.e. his weight was one or 2 pounds less, compared to the GSD growth chart. He was 48 or 49 pounds at 5 month, if I recall it correctly. However, I made a **** mistake of overfeeding him because I forgot changing the daily feeding amount between 6 and 8 months. I should have been more careful, though. Anyway, he is now about 26-in tall and 78 pounds. I'm hoping he will slow down the growth. Attached are his pics of now and the old days.

Any tips or advice will be appreciated in advance.
Attached Thumbnails
Can my GSD grow out of fear?-img_20140116_175129.jpg   Can my GSD grow out of fear?-img_00000549.jpg   Can my GSD grow out of fear?-lobo.jpg  
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Old 01-27-2014, 12:30 PM   #2 (permalink)
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if you want to find out if he is DDR post a pedigree , or reveal his sire and dam. -- ???
Your dog doesn't seem to have any problems. Good open social character . High thresholds (tolerant) . Has good balance , not stimulated easily , and good blocking , so not reactive . Good control and recovery.
quote "However, recently I have observed him tucking his tail between his tails when he encountered few, large dogs in the dog park. He seemed timid or frightened, if I didn't misinterpret him. I'm just wondering if he can grow out of this fear when he grows up. I don't want him aggressive but I want him confident. I don't know how to explain this mixed emotion. I'm very happy to see him friendly, but it is sort of unpleasant to see his tail between his legs. Isn't he a GSD? It contradicts that he has a DDR bloodline. "

how does that contradict anything . You are looking at his reaction as a reflection on your needs , you are embarrassed -- what do you mean isn't he a gsd , and how does that contradict being a DDR dog. Oy . Dog parks , again.

You are lucky to have the dog that you have no matter what lines he is from. Do you have any idea how many people would want to trade places with you. The dog has no problem. You are , however, creating a problem. GSD are not good dog park candidates in the best of times. Focus on the dog doing things with you, for you.
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Old 01-27-2014, 12:32 PM   #3 (permalink)
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He doesn't look like the sable DDR dogs I see. He is very light in color.
I would stop with the dog parks and get him into a structured group class where he can build his confidence. There is no reason tho have him at a dog park where other dogs dominate him. It will only end in a fight if he decides to not be submissive to them.
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Old 01-27-2014, 03:07 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I agree your dog is very good for an 8 month old. My dog is like yours where small dogs will bite him but he just stands there. he used to be very friendly to people but at around 9 or 10 months started to just ignore strangers and bark at a few others. We are working on that. The last time we went to the dog park was about a month ago. Some dogs on the other corner, started barking and Dexter immediately ran to the gate to leave, looking afraid. I could look at it as hes still a scardy puppy or that he was smart enough to say lets leave before things get out of hand. I took it as a cue to leave, so we did.
My trainers did ask that i stop taking him to dog parks all the time because all he wanted to do, when he saw other dogs, was go and play. She and others here were right. Hes much better now at ignoring other dogs. Yours will too. hes still a young puppy.

EDIT. Dexter was next to me just playing fetch when the other dogs were barking. he was not involved in what was going on over there.

Last edited by Msmaria; 01-27-2014 at 03:12 PM.
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Old 01-27-2014, 03:09 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Do you currently or have you ever brought your GSD to training? Work on confidence building. Take Lobo to a dog show of any kind. Lots of good advise to be had at these places. Your Lobo looks good and sounds good. Also, what do you consider a vicious bark, was his hair up tail stiff? How or why did the barking start? How was the dog acting? How did you handle it, and why the whole family?............. Forget the dog park. The norm as far as growth goes, is just as long as your pup looks right and is healthy. I have had GSDs from all kinds of blood lines and they all grew different.
The chart is a guide but not a rule.
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Old 01-27-2014, 05:20 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by carmspack View Post
if you want to find out if he is DDR post a pedigree , or reveal his sire and dam. -- ???
Your dog doesn't seem to have any problems. Good open social character . High thresholds (tolerant) . Has good balance , not stimulated easily , and good blocking , so not reactive . Good control and recovery.
quote "However, recently I have observed him tucking his tail between his tails when he encountered few, large dogs in the dog park. He seemed timid or frightened, if I didn't misinterpret him. I'm just wondering if he can grow out of this fear when he grows up. I don't want him aggressive but I want him confident. I don't know how to explain this mixed emotion. I'm very happy to see him friendly, but it is sort of unpleasant to see his tail between his legs. Isn't he a GSD? It contradicts that he has a DDR bloodline. "

how does that contradict anything . You are looking at his reaction as a reflection on your needs , you are embarrassed -- what do you mean isn't he a gsd , and how does that contradict being a DDR dog. Oy . Dog parks , again.

You are lucky to have the dog that you have no matter what lines he is from. Do you have any idea how many people would want to trade places with you. The dog has no problem. You are , however, creating a problem. GSD are not good dog park candidates in the best of times. Focus on the dog doing things with you, for you.
Absolutely, you're right. I'm the one who was upset because I have a stereotype against GSDs. I thought that GSDs are fearless dogs.
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Old 01-27-2014, 05:22 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by HOBY View Post
Do you currently or have you ever brought your GSD to training? Work on confidence building. Take Lobo to a dog show of any kind. Lots of good advise to be had at these places. Your Lobo looks good and sounds good. Also, what do you consider a vicious bark, was his hair up tail stiff? How or why did the barking start? How was the dog acting? How did you handle it, and why the whole family?............. Forget the dog park. The norm as far as growth goes, is just as long as your pup looks right and is healthy. I have had GSDs from all kinds of blood lines and they all grew different.
The chart is a guide but not a rule.
Yes, Lobo is taking a training course. There's an American bulldog (or pit-bull), but Lobo is not afraid of her.
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Old 01-27-2014, 05:30 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joumon View Post
Hi? I'm a first-time GSD owner who has a 8-month-old male GSD, Lobo. I got him from a local breeder who claimed that he is from East-German (DDR) bloodline, when he was 10-week old. He has sable coat color which I really love.

...

Some background Info:
He had grown normal up to 5 months, i.e. his weight was one or 2 pounds less, compared to the GSD growth chart. He was 48 or 49 pounds at 5 month, if I recall it correctly. However, I made a **** mistake of overfeeding him because I forgot changing the daily feeding amount between 6 and 8 months. I should have been more careful, though. Anyway, he is now about 26-in tall and 78 pounds. I'm hoping he will slow down the growth. Attached are his pics of now and the old days.

Any tips or advice will be appreciated in advance.
By the way, thank you for all of your replies. I'll take your advice seriously and think more about them.

My family is very happy with him. When he tucked his tail between legs, many people at the park laughed because they couldn't believe what they saw. They praised how friendly GSD my Lobo is, but I personally took it differently. It is my fault.
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Old 01-27-2014, 05:39 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joumon View Post
By the way, thank you for all of your replies. I'll take your advice seriously and think more about them.

My family is very happy with him. When he tucked his tail between legs, many people at the park laughed because they couldn't believe what they saw. They praised how friendly GSD my Lobo is, but I personally took it differently. It is my fault.
Yes you took it too personally, alot of people think that their dogs reflect on them. ie. You have a coward dog , means your a coward and thats not right. I think thats why most men take it too personal.
At my dog park GSDs are known to be big babies. your dog is still young, most would understand that and even commend you for having a well behaved dog with the little ones.
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Old 01-27-2014, 05:47 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by HOBY View Post
Do you currently or have you ever brought your GSD to training? Work on confidence building. Take Lobo to a dog show of any kind. Lots of good advise to be had at these places. Your Lobo looks good and sounds good. Also, what do you consider a vicious bark, was his hair up tail stiff? How or why did the barking start? How was the dog acting? How did you handle it, and why the whole family?............. Forget the dog park. The norm as far as growth goes, is just as long as your pup looks right and is healthy. I have had GSDs from all kinds of blood lines and they all grew different.
The chart is a guide but not a rule.
I didn't properly use my words. Vicious barking means barking with teeth shown. When Lobo barks, I barely see his teeth, and his barking doesn't sound like he's mad at all. Last night, my newly-adopted Chiwanee, CoCo, was very mean with Lobo's favorite bone. I think that CoCo crossed the line and Lobo barked with his teeth shown just a few times. But, I've never seen such barking from him. That's what I have seen from other GSDs. It was also very loud. My whole my family was sitting around Lobo, and we were kind of surprised with such barking. I said, 'Wow, Lobo can bark like that?'.
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