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Old 02-08-2014, 05:02 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default My first GSD

Hello everyone!

I guess this is also my first post here.

I have a wonderful and beautiful GS named Chevelle. She is now 4 months old, 40 pounds and is awesome and awful at the same time!

Teaching her to fetch took 2 minutes, teaching her to sit and lay down only took a couple tries... but the leash pulling and excessive biting and JUMPING are proving to be a problem... increasingly bad since my boyfriend started "making her submit" but rolling her over onto her back or holding her down when he came over. Worked as a short term fix for him but ended up that she became more aggressively wild with me and my 5 year old daughter. So today we went to a dog trainer who decided the best course of action was to keep Chevelle for a few days for some extensive work. She is an amazing trainer and I know she will help tremendously...

I sure miss the pup though! It's only been 2 hours and I have already emailed the trainer twice...... separation anxiety goes both ways and Chevelle might have it so bad because *I* have it. She goes to work with me (I clean houses and businesses) and she waits patiently in my car... so she has been with me or near me 24 hours a day for the last 6 weeks that I have had her.

Anyway, Hi everyone!
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Old 02-08-2014, 05:49 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I think you made the right decision. Your daughter is 5 years old and the dog is getting more aggressive. This is a good thing the trainer kept the dog to help not have an accident with the child. Your boyfriend may or may not have helped ? Is he well versed in training dogs to obey ?

Does the dog react differently to a male as opposed to you ? He may very well be the pack leader and your a member ?

I miss my dog when I take out the trash, it's normal and he misses me and barks until he sees me return. When my wife comes home he goes berserk wanting to give kisses and she must set down her keys and purse to allow him facial access.. It works both ways. Good luck !!!
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Old 02-08-2014, 06:21 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Hmmm.. no, my bf is not versed in dog training.. he was winging it. A few weeks ago I actually could not talk to him for a day because he hit my dog when she was jumping on him. I don't blame him for wanting to keep her from jumping but hitting was not cool..... Chevelle is pretty easy on my 5 year old usually but since the BF started doing the "hold her to the floor" thing she started to bite more aggressively with me and if I refused to play she would start to bark furiously. So yes, leaving her at the trainers is a good choice... I just miss her like crazy!!
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Old 02-08-2014, 06:28 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I laughed when I read your reply.. If you wait 6 more months to jump on her and nibble on her ear and make her cry out; "stop mommy" she may rule the house..

At 4 months you should correct her - then praise her when she act's the correct way you wish, you will gain her respect. Pounce, nibble, listen, cover your face.. Oops, did I just suggest you dominate your dog to protect your daughter's beautiful cheeks, you bet I did..!!
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Old 02-08-2014, 06:28 PM   #5 (permalink)
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A couple pictures of my true love..
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Old 02-08-2014, 06:32 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Well, I definitely believe in correcting my dog, more with positive reinforcement than slapping her in the face until she hits the floor. I think that is just plain rude.

Add to that my Ex Husband was abusive to animals (puppy killer, I kid you not) so over aggressive behavior toward my dog really freaked me out.
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Old 02-08-2014, 06:50 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Since the BF and I are still in the "taking it slow" stage, he is not here everyday.. could Chevelle still see him as Pack Leader if he isn't around much? Not wanting to place blame on him or anyone else but the really aggressive barking behavior only started after he began holding her on the floor on her back. The trainer suggests that this is making her "snap" a bit and she is shifting to defensive behavior.
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Old 02-08-2014, 07:01 PM   #8 (permalink)
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I suggest you read through the stickies in the puppy sections. Here are a couple to get you started.

http:// http://www.germanshepherds.c...nhibition.html
http:// http://www.germanshepherds.c...ant-puppy.html


Alpha rolling and biting the dog back are antiquated training methods that can have serious repercussions. I would recommend finding a trainer that is experienced in reward based training of working dogs / GSDs. There are also some great books available in the subject. Jean Donaldson, Dr. Dobson, Patricia McConnell, and Leslie McDevitt are all authors I would suggest.

GSD puppies can be a handful. Have some patience, educate yourself, and think things through. I would also suggest you get the BF on board with the same training principles and methods you decide to use. Consistency is paramount in training. If you are both on the same page it will be much more productive and easier on the dog.
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Old 02-08-2014, 07:06 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Your trainer is quite right. Alpha dominance moves like holding a puppy on its back will only reinforce a defensive fight or flight response. That tactic is like a bad urban myth...and will only probably damage the bond between you and Chevelle. Even though you are female your puppy still sees you as the pack leader...not your BF . She is looking to you to protect her--and correct her--when she crosses the line. Just like a human toddler, imo.

If you have time while the puppy is away try to watch the online videos on building pack structure from Leerburg. You have to teach Chevelle your daughter is higher in the pack hierarchy than she is. Also on YouTube check out Training Positive. Since your puppy is so clever I think his training methods will work very well for you!

Chevelle is so gorgeous! I wish you good luck.




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Old 02-08-2014, 07:10 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by carrieincolorado View Post
Since the BF and I are still in the "taking it slow" stage, he is not here everyday.. could Chevelle still see him as Pack Leader if he isn't around much? Not wanting to place blame on him or anyone else but the really aggressive barking behavior only started after he began holding her on the floor on her back. The trainer suggests that this is making her "snap" a bit and she is shifting to defensive behavior.
While dogs do need and want leadership, the idea of an alpha ruling over the pack is incorrect. Without seeing the dog, I would guess that she is taking this as rough play and is responding with more rough play of her own. Dogs don't alpha roll one another by force. This isn't something she is hard wired to understand.

The people who initially recommended this type of training don't even recommend it anymore. I would stop the BF from trying to dominate the dog and start training it the behaviors you expect. Good obedience training leads to a well behaved dog.

I would also recommend an exercise program that includes both physical and mental exercise. A tired dog is less likely to be reactive. Scan through the puppy threads for ideas. There are plenty of exercise options for a young dog. They will be fun for both of you, will increase your bond, and will offer you the opportunity to reach the dog to comply with obedience commands while excited.

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When a dog saves the life of a man, it becomes clear that partnership knows no bounds.

Fama - T.E.D.D. OEF XI-XII (GSD)(RET... )
Marshall - T.E.D.D. OEF XII-XIII (Lab)(SF EDD)
Lucian - Med Alert (Cane Corso)
Pud - the old man (Pit x Lab)
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