Nervous behaviour...is it a stage and normal? - German Shepherd Dog Forums

Increase font size: 0, 10, 25, 50%

GermanShepherds.com is the premier German Shepherd Forum on the internet. Registered Users do not see the above ads.
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 12-25-2012, 06:19 PM   #1 (permalink)
Member
 
shadowdsouza's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Posts: 86
Question Nervous behaviour...is it a stage and normal?

My 7 month old male is growing beautifully. Just wondering about his emotional state. He does well with people visiting home. He loves to play and seems okay. He is not a barker when the door bell rings.

The concern is when he is on walks. He is very distractive and is constantly on the look out. He is nervous around a big plastic bag flying on the street once. The other day on a walk he saw a person, tall with a complete snow suit. He was nervous and pulled me the other way after becoming a little curious. The funny thing was the person seemed to be nervous of him too.

For the first time after that incident we had a visitor at home with a jacket with a furry hood and he barked at the person, a little nervous.

Even though we walk around traffic he sometimes seems nervous when he cannot see the traffic approaching. He does not seem relaxed.

I am willing to give more information. Any opinions...?????
__________________
R.I.P. My girl GSD Shadow ...March 2009 to November 2011 taken too early
R.I.P. Clyde - my first
shadowdsouza is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Old 12-26-2012, 08:44 AM   #2 (permalink)
Senior Member
 
Linda1270's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Massachusetts
Posts: 275
Default

I use to have this problem with my 4 1/2 month old GSD Tess, although a little better, she still is nervous whenever I try to take her out for a walk. Tess stops constantly and looks behind her, I practically have to drag her up the street and then she'll pull me all the way down the street until we reach our yard. She will bark at people who have bright puffy jackets or hoods on and it really can be frustrating when all you want to do is have a nice safe walk with your dog.

I don't have any advice for you but wanted you to know that your not alone. I have a trainer working with Tess and she goes to day care twice a week. She's a little landshark to say the least but hopefully with positive training she will come out of this phase. I'll be watching this post in hopes of others with more experience in this situation will chime in with some advice.

Good luck!
Linda1270 is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-26-2012, 11:56 AM   #3 (permalink)
The Agility Rocks! Moderator
 
MaggieRoseLee's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Bushkill, PA (The Poconos!)
Posts: 26,724
Default

It can definitely be a stage and why all the hours of socialization we do weekly the first year or so is so vital. That way they already trust and rely on us to take charge of new and scary situations so they can stop worrying.

Have you started up dog classes yet? Another way to continue the socialization and gaining the leadership role for our pup in a nice controlled situation. A good instructor and set up the class if a new issue comes up and everyone can learn and do better every week.
__________________
*****
MACH3 Bretta Lee Wildhaus MXG MJG MXF MFB TQX HIT CGC TC
Glory B Wildhaus AX, AXJ, XF
plus Miss Osin Blue Wildhaus

"Nothing new can come into your life unless you are grateful for what you already have. ~ "--- Michael Bernhard, gratitude
MaggieRoseLee is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-26-2012, 01:58 PM   #4 (permalink)
Crowned Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: ontario -
Posts: 9,250
Default

I would not say this is a stage but a manifestation of the dogs inner self , a reflexive fear reation . You can condition the dog to take some of the edges off the behaviour but the cause is everpresent -- . Don't let the dog be in control . Don't make an issue of what ever fearful thing he is confronting . Continue as normal . Normalize the situation . Model the behaviour you want to see from him. "keep calm -- carry on"

for the dog that rushes home , while you are out try to have fun on lead , make a dancing game of heeling , don't let the attention wander , lots of praise and redirection to you , who is a positive reinforcer . When you go home ,change your route , go past your house , go home with dog under control and when you get home don't treat the dog as if it had just endured some treacherous ambush laden adventure , with treats and priviliges . Instead crate the dog -- some neutral experience , but not fun. In this time he will think about the "fun" he had on the walk , and man what happened this is so boring. That way he will look forward to going and being out with you . Coming home is like coming home from your friends party before the cake and ice cream were served .

I know what you mean by this "
That way they already trust and rely on us to take charge of new and scary situations so they can stop worrying.
"
but that is just so wrong for a GSD . One reason we have them is for protection -- they should be taking care of US in scarry situations so WE can stop worrying .
__________________
Carmen

**********

Carmspack
carmspack is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-27-2012, 10:58 AM   #5 (permalink)
Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: Colorado Spings, CO
Posts: 144
Default

I have had succes in those scary situations by asking my pup to sit, I then either stand or kneel to his side so that I'm just barely touching him and together we watch the scary event together until its gone or he is comfortable.

The theory is that I'm modeling positive behavior for him. I'm touching him to help give him comfort, I'm soothing with my words and tone, and I'm waiting for him to calm down.

When he was young we walked past a house where there is a St. Bernard in the back yard. This dog is huge with a deep bark. Gunnar was FREAKED out. We walked past, but then I had him turn and sit while I stood there and we just listened. (My neighbor probably thought we were egging the dog on, but didn't say anything). After a few minutes Gunnar ears relaxed and his attention moved to something else when he realized the dog could not get out of the yard. I've done the same thing when I saw the garbage truck coming, or another dog walker with a bigger dog or any scary encounter. After repeated encounters with the scary thing, and you the owner modeling calm and relaxed behavior, most stuff just doesn't phase Gunnar any more.

I hope that helps. But you have to plan time for this stuff on every trip out of the house and every time someone comes to the door. Other people seem to get it when they see you working with puppies and appreciate that you are doing to too.
Thorny is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-27-2012, 11:09 AM   #6 (permalink)
Crowned Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: ontario -
Posts: 9,250
Default

very good advice Thorny -- you do the same thing with horses that have concerns
__________________
Carmen

**********

Carmspack
carmspack is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-28-2012, 02:14 AM   #7 (permalink)
Jag
Knighted Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Ohio
Posts: 2,683
Default

Right or wrong, I've reacted the same way to all my shepherd's 'concerns' over things. I don't touch them, soothe them, or in any way coddle them. I expect them to pick up on my 'it doesn't matter' feeling, and move on with me. Pups and dogs are not permitted to move behind me, hide behind me, or pull me in another direction. I expect them to check out what is concerning to them (with upbeat encouragement.. I will touch the 'offending thing' first) and then move on. If repeated exposures are needed, I will give that to them. I haven't had a dog yet that didn't 'get over' whatever the issue was. It may sound harsh, but this is a GSD who will be exposed to many unknowns in its lifetime. Unless there is a genetic temperament flaw... or something traumatic has happened. My bond to them needs to be formed first, so they have trust in my judgement. There's no questioning my judgement. They need to understand that I am the leader, and there is nothing to fear when their leader is present. JMHO

Last edited by Jag; 12-28-2012 at 02:17 AM.
Jag is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-28-2012, 02:45 AM   #8 (permalink)
Banned
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: California, US
Posts: 5,928
Default

Does sound like a nerve/courage situation to me and the advice given is good. treat the new thing as nothing to even think about - just normal and above all don't praise or "coddle" the dog when they show signs of fear/nervousness.

We had good luck with our dog when he was young of going to investigate everything that we saw out walking and also with all the people. BUT, our dog was always VERY curious and would go right up to things that he may have startled at in the first place - like a falling over trash can or a big rug blowing in a strong wind. And once he investigated it - never again did he show any concern.

Might be worth a try to see if your guy will recover and go over to new things?
codmaster is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 02-15-2013, 06:28 PM   #9 (permalink)
Member
 
shadowdsouza's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Posts: 86
Default

Just wanted to give an update. It seems like it was a stage ( a short one). I seemed to have been hyper sensitive myself....


He no longer seems uncomfortbale around things ...very curious though. Loves going on walks and interacting with other dogs.


I am just glad that it was short lived
__________________
R.I.P. My girl GSD Shadow ...March 2009 to November 2011 taken too early
R.I.P. Clyde - my first
shadowdsouza is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 02-17-2013, 10:07 AM   #10 (permalink)
The Administrator from the Great White North, eh?
 
Castlemaid's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Northern British Columbia
Posts: 13,770
Default

Glad to hear that things are better - some dogs do go through some wonky behaviour stages as puppies.

One thing I can suggest too for anyone else reading the thread looking for help with a nervous/scared pup, is to find an older, confident, trustworthy dog to walk with as a role model for the younger dog. This can really help nervous dogs gain confidence on walks.
__________________
Lucia

Keeta BH, OB1, TR1, AD
Rottweiler/Hairy Dog mix?? Shelter rescue
Gryffon Vom Wildhaus BH
Castlemaid is online now   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the German Shepherd Dog Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On



All times are GMT -4. The time now is 02:37 PM.



Powered by vBulletin® Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
SEO by vBSEO 3.3.2
PetGuide.com
Basset Hound Forum Doberman Forum Golden Retriever Forum Beagle Forum
Boxer Forum Dog Forum Pit Bull Forum Poodle Forum
Bulldog Forum Fish Forum Havanese Forum Maltese Forum
Cat Forum German Shepherd Forum Labradoodle Forum Yorkie Forum Hedgehog Forum
Chihuahua Forum Retriever Breeds Cichlid Forum Dart Frog Forum Mice Breeder Forum