Puppy too playful? Not socialized?? Noob GSD owner from Nepal.
My 6 months old German Shepherd, Tyson.
He is a dog filled with energy and drive and there lies my problem.
He runs towards any dog he sees, he want to play with them, he is not aggressive, not fearful, he just wants to play. When on drive or when he is after any dog, cat, he won't listen or come when i call him.
Other wise he knows recall, he sits when told..preety much he listens to everything i say. He walks very good on leash, never pulls on leash, that is until he sees a dog. Then he pulls to get to him, i correct him but until we pass the dog he keeps pulling towards the dog.
Now, my amateur brain told me he needs socializing, so i started taking him to a public park, it's been few days. In Nepal we do not have a dog park so people bring their dog in the same park where they jog.
The first day, i brought him inside, he sat calmy looking towards some stray dogs and then a dog ( another GSD, 7 months, male named Yufi) came to play and they played for about a good 30-35 minutes. The other one also had no good recall so we have to leash them and walk them after playing.
once he was tired, we headed home. On the way, he would look to other dogs, but wont lunge. I guess he was tired. now i believe " A tired dog is a good dog."
But, next day, his play date Yufi from yesterday was not there, now he keep lunging at any stray dog or other dog he sees in the park. The stray dogs knows better to not jump at a dog with an owner and are quiet friendly and do not bit any dog they see, but Tyson keeps lunging at them and i did not let him off leash that day.
Next day, again Yufi was not there, but i saw a young GSD and he was willing to play, talked to the owner and we agreed to let them play for a while. the dog was a male, 9 months old GSD named Jungye. Good, playful dog, but no recall and seemed scared of the owner.
After playing for 20-30 minute other dog looked tired and was not willing to play, so i called tyson and walked away...he came after me and was looking towards other dog stray dog but when i called him he seemed to come towards me.
Until a stray dog showed some interest in playing, ducking, getting down on "down" positing, running around...now Tyson was in drive and would run around playing with him...he would not come to me.
after some time, i leashed him and returned home. Little improvement, but not quiet there.
next day, i took his "fetch playing" stick and a cricket ball with me, went to the park, took him to a less crowded place, far from other dogs and played fetch with him, i would throw his ball and walk at the other direction, while he fetch and follow me. When he is near me, i will show him his stick, he will leave the ball and i will throw the stick, take the ball and walk away. Slowly, slowly i will go towards the middle of the field where other dogs are.
(There are lots of people with dogs, on leash and off leash, and the good thing is i have not seen a them fighting at all, and seems like the stray dogs are also playing within them now.)
After playing fetch for some time, i would look for a do g(he is a stray, but is very playful and looks young) and go towards him and give him the stick, he runs aroud with it and Tyson plays with him. But when Tyson tries to play with other dog, i call him and say stop (in Nepali language, of course) and he stops and comes back.but not all the time.
if the other dog plays, he won't even come towards me, after few minutes he will look for me and if he sees me he goes back to playing. If i am far away, he runs little closer but will not stop playing.
I have been doing this for 4 days, and i have seen some improvement.But, he still lunges towards other dog.
In summary, He has little improvement, he will lunge towards footballs, cricket balls but will stop if i say stop and will come back to me. he will run towards other dogs but listens sometimes.
My problems, he knows recall, he listens to commands. But with other dogs around he want to play and when he is in the "zone" in the drive, he wont listen to me and will not come back when called. If the other dog refuses to play the he will come back when called, but if the other one plays then he will just keep playing, he plays around me, but will not break or come when called.
I know the post is too long but please read it and advise me how to proceed.
i want you all to know that everything i know is by Reading/learning in this site, i have no books related to training, no other people with experience to ask to. All GSD i encountered are far not trained then my tyson, they even lack the basic obedience.
Tyson is improving slowly but i have a little doubt in my training method and if i get a proper help or a somebody to say do like this or i had same thing with my dog and i did this then it will be very appreciated.
Welcome to the forum! Your pup sounds wonderful to me and we all start having issues with them around 6 months as they mature and become more confident.
Do they have dog classes and trainers in your area? Thats a huge help for me :)
Otherwise, have you seen this section?
Welcome to the GSD/FAQ's for the first time owner - German Shepherd Dog Forums
Thanks for the info, and i am glad that it's not just my puppy.
I will read through all the links you provided, i have read one thread but i guess i missed the other one.
And no, there are no good trainer or Training class here and it is too expensive as well.
If i am not wrong, i have also seen your hiking video with Glory and Berta Lee. :) That was the inspiration and an eye opener for me to take Tyson to the park, the park 4 kms far and it is a 8km walk in round trip. Before that i thought 8kms walk+playing fetch and playing with other dogs for half hour there was over exercising, and i was worried about his bones, health etc.
I was very impressed with clicker training, but i couldnot find clicker here and although it is $ 2-5 online, being Nepali and without Credit card or paypal i could not buy online. And again if i manage to buy it somehow, the shipping charges are outrageous :( i am trying positive reinforcement, doing this..doing that...i just hope i train him well.
i had the same problem with my first dog. he just loved to play with other dogs. in training classes he'd pull and whine and not listen. if i recalled he'd just leisurely jog back (if he came at all) while looking around. when i got my current pup, i just did engagement training/bonding for the first 6 months. made a HUGE difference. this dog thinks im the most fun thing in the world. he looks to me for all the fun. dogs arent as much fun as me. in my opinion stop taking him to the dog park and just work on engagement and getting him to have fun with you! recall with my current dog is him sprinting back to me no matter what he's doing. engagement is important.
If you know any threads for engagement training/bonding, Please let me know.
You have to teach a command like stay or down. How you teach it is up to you but I usually go through the teaching phase positively. Then you have to proof it for distraction with some punishment either in the form of negative or positive punishment. You could try to do it positive only but unless the drives for what you have outweigh competing motivators you're going to have to press the dog some. If done right and done with tact the punishment is no big deal.
Please feel free to correct me if i'm wrong.
Basically, i would teach him a simple command and make sure he reacts as i want with some distractions???
while playing with other dogs, if i say sit and he sits then he will also come when i call him towards me, right? (if he knows recall)
what would a positive punishment be?? i will also be searchin for some threads :p:p
with recall you have to start inside the house with no distractions. when he comes 100% of the time then you can move to outside where there are new smells and sounds. once the dog comes 100% of the time then you slowly add distractions. having him recall around other dogs should be the last and ultimate test.
the recall should always be fun and positive. never call the dog back to yell at it or to take something away. sometimes when i recall my dog i will just take off running in the opposite direction and when he catches up to me i throw him a big party. other times when he recalls i'll pull out his tug and immediately play. coming to me is fun for him. i also wont recall him if i feel that he might not come. every time your dog blows you off he is just reenforcing in his mind that its ok not to come.
teaching the dog what recall means is the easy part. proofing around distractions is the hard and humbling part. once you feel your dog is 100% reliable around distractions then i would add correction. there will be a time when your dog knows what he is suppose to do but will blow you off. at this point i would add a correction (my personal preference because of its timing is an ecollar). the dog needs to know that come means come no matter what. you are far from this point though. you can go to the dog park if you wish but i wouldnt recall him over and over if he isnt coming. thats counterproductive and making him think that not coming is no big deal.
for engagement just go to youtube and type in "dog engagement training". the michael ellis videos are especially informative.
Thanks a lot, that cleared up most of my questions.
So Tyson knows recall, he almost 100% inside, except when he is eating :) os i guess it's a start.
Now i have to proof it, and make a recall fun for him.
Ok, so i use correction when he know something he has to do,and he does not do it and he KNOWS it ?? well, that clears many things for me.
And i have to be clever so he does not blow me off.
Thanks for the suggestion for the videos, i searched yesterday and found too many videos with too many technique, i'll stick with michael ellis videos for now.
Edit: what can be a positive punishment?
in a note, i skipped park day today, and i did a obedience training instead.
with corrections i'd be careful and make sure the dog knows the command in certain situations. just because a dog sits inside the house doesnt mean it KNOWS what sit means everywhere. if the dog consistently sits inside and then suddenly blows you off then you can correct because the dog has been in that situation many times and knows the command but is clearly blowing you off.
if you bring your dog outside with cars driving by and ask for a sit and he ignores you, then you should NOT correct. he doesnt know sit in this situation. once you train/proof your dog to sit outside around cars reliably then you can correct for blowing you off. a lot of people train their dog inside and then when the dog doesnt perform outside it gets corrected; which imo is unfair to the dog.
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