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Old 04-16-2013, 05:33 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Dominant Puppy?

Hi,
my roommate and I got a 10 week old GSD puppy. It's been about 7 days since we got him(so he's 11 weeks now) and I think he may be showing signs of dominance? This isn't my first dog but it IS my first GSD.

He is quite nippy so when he tries to teeth/bite I try to redirect him to a toy. However, at random times he seems to show a tad bit of aggression to my roommate. He snapped his teeth at her and kept barking with a low body stance. I'm scared that he might show aggression when he is full grown and when we have less control over him. He is growing quite quickly.

I keep my commands to 1 time minimum but he sometimes listens and sometimes doesn't. When he doesn't I force the command on him. He definitely understands the command because when I have treats he has no problem following through. He's learning to ignore more frequently though.

My landlord came down while eating some cereal but he kept pouncing on her and when we pushed him away he walked away with his tail curling upwards, which I read to be a sign of confidence/dominance. He also seems to sneak onto our bed when we are sleeping but whenever I feel a vibration I assert him with a firm "NO" and push him off, but he keeps on trying to get on the bed. He's extremely defiant.

I know persistency is the key and rewarding good behavior is the way to train, but it seems like we're making no progress at all. People have recommended alpha rolling but it seems stupid to pin a puppy to the ground.

I bought him from a breeder who SUPPOSEDLY had good feedback but other's say the breeder is really sketchy. Maybe he was spoiled or not raised right during his puppy hood?

I know he might be testing me but can this lead to future aggression?
Please help! Thank you in advance.

Last edited by Lotus; 04-16-2013 at 05:37 PM.
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Old 04-16-2013, 05:37 PM   #2 (permalink)
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He's a normal puppy Welcome to owning a GSD
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Old 04-16-2013, 05:42 PM   #3 (permalink)
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This has become a depressing day for me... T-T
How do I get past his dominance?

These are some tactics I've been working on...
- I never walk over/around him. I make him move.
- I make sure I eat first and leave his food on the counter until we're finished eating. THEN I feed him.
- We never let him out the door before us.
- I never let him walk in front of me when we walk. If he does I quickly change directions.
- I ignore his barking/whining.
- I never lose tug-o-war.

That's so far it.
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Old 04-16-2013, 05:43 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I agree with the above, he is only 11 weeks old with the attention span of a gnat.

They bite, they bark, they growl, they can be brats

My suggestion, get into a good obedience class where YOU can learn as well as the puppy.

If you don't want him in your bed, crate him at nite..I have to tell you, these dogs DO want to be with their humans 24/7 and in bed is one of them )
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Old 04-16-2013, 05:44 PM   #5 (permalink)
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He's a baby figuring out his place in the world.
Don't over-react or over-analyze him yet.
He is new and you are new to him so be patient but keep up the good work.
With GSDs, patience and persistence are the most important qualities to have.
Remember, you are the boss and you may have to be a bit of a drill
instructor at times.
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Old 04-16-2013, 05:45 PM   #6 (permalink)
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you were posting while I was posting

Again, HE IS A PUPPY! , who cares who wins at tug of war? Mine win all the time, doesn't mean they are dominant/defiant dogs.

Work on your basics, sit, RECALL, being most important, always carry treats on you and reward for good behaviors whether you've asked for them or he just offers something that is "good"..

You are not going to have a perfectly obedient behaved puppy at 11 weeks of age..

Find a puppy class
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Old 04-16-2013, 05:46 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JakodaCD OA View Post
I agree with the above, he is only 11 weeks old with the attention span of a gnat.

They bite, they bark, they growl, they can be brats

My suggestion, get into a good obedience class where YOU can learn as well as the puppy.

If you don't want him in your bed, crate him at nite..I have to tell you, these dogs DO want to be with their humans 24/7 and in bed is one of them )
Oh yeah, he's definitely a brat. Crating him at night doesn't seem to work that well. He never stops crying even if we ignore him. I also tried teaching him that being in the crate isn't so bad but he doesn't believe me . He seems to be growing quickly so spending $6o bucks on a crate that won't be in use soon seems like a bit of a waste. No offense.
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Old 04-16-2013, 05:47 PM   #8 (permalink)
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He's still a baby.

Take it slowly and don't overact.

He can't be expected to focus for very long and much of what you describe is just his way of getting attention.

Relax and enjoy a normal pup.

Search the site about crate training.

You may want to up his exercise. A tired puppy is a good puppy.

Good luck.
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Old 04-16-2013, 05:50 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Thank you everyone for your responses. We're just worried because we thought it may lead to having an aggressive dog. My golden retriever was always calm so we're not used to the barking and growling.

We'll continue with our training!

Does anyone know when they calm down a bit?
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Old 04-16-2013, 05:55 PM   #10 (permalink)
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This is a puppy. Stop worrying about all the alpha stuff. They call gsd puppies land sharks because they bite so much Place toys in his mouth when he does this . His attention span is not long yet. Treat train and yes at this age you might have to say it more than once. You have to do kindergarten before you try to do high school. And its ok to let your dog win tug sometimes. Find a good trainer and do some classes but stop worrying about everything he does as alpha. Enjoy him while he is a puppy . This is all normal.
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