Family members walking away from dog causing anxiety? - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 07-12-2019, 09:33 PM Thread Starter
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Family members walking away from dog causing anxiety?

Here’s one for you. When we’re in our yard and house, me or my husband or daughter walking away from Kona is a non event. Go out in a public place it’s a very different story.

We’ve tried all the different combinations, results are the same, if one or two of us walk away from Kona and the current handler, she whines really loud, sometimes like a whine/bark, loses all focus and control. If one or two of us walks in front of her and current handler...she’ll pull right through even a prong trying to get to the other two.

She only really calms when we are all three back together. If only one of us takes her out, she doesn’t do this at all.

Out of curiosity, what is this? A weird separation anxiety? She has zero issues if any or all of us leave her at home. Herding behavior?
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 07-12-2019, 09:42 PM
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It's pretty common, at least with the GSD's I know. It could stem from a herding behavior I suppose. An unwillingness to have the flock split up. It could be pack behavior that only presents when the pack is away from the den together. It could be an insecurity, a desire not to have the family divided away from the den.
I have always corrected it and moved on. It's undesirable and sometimes gets obnoxious, with mine at least, therefore it warrants a correction. You will behave on leash. Period.
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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 07-12-2019, 10:34 PM
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My girl has always done this. She just freaks out, is loud about it and makes a total spectacle of herself. It's obnoxious and we tried correcting the behavior several different ways and for us nothing worked. Even our very good trainer we had when she was young couldn't get her past it. We worked on it a long time. Mild to moderate corrections didn't phase her. Strong corrections just shut her down and that was worse. I know that's probably not what you want to hear and I wish you have much more success than we had.
Not being able to get past it for our girl boils down to genetics and weak nerve.
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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 07-13-2019, 06:34 AM Thread Starter
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Well I’m glad to hear we aren’t the only one seeing this behavior! She’s my first GSD & herding dog so it isn’t something I’ve seen from a dog before. Kona is otherwise extremely confident about things in the environment, loud noises, fireworks, carts, vehicles... Not as confident about people, she warms to most of them after a minute (standard aloofness I guess) which may be factoring into this.

Thinking on it, she doesnt whine and act up as much if we’re out away from home but alone, like in a park. She doesn’t like us separating but it’s not unmanageable. It’s a crowded space like the pet store or Home Depot where it’s worse.

Which sucks cause we really want and like to go places as a whole family. We may try a bit stronger corrections for it and just keep working at it to see if we make progress. Don’t want to give up yet. I hope it’s not a nerves issue. She’s 18 months, so crossing my fingers we can work her though this still before she’s mature.
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 07-13-2019, 09:45 AM
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My big-boy is used to being out and about with the three of us and seeing us split up a bit. I think much of it came from his schutzhund practice days. It doesn't mean he won't keep an eye on things. My gal-dog is often walked by me and my big-boy by my hubby. When we split up she takes it in stride but when she sees the guys, all loose leash walking goes out the window in her desire to reunite the pack.

It was tricky when we first started doing Man-trailing as my gal-dog didn't want to loose track of where we were parked and where the guys were. After a few lessons she learned that it was ok to move away from the pack and go find The Source. Finding the "lost person" meant returning to the pack to relax. I think that is almost a bigger reward than hotdogs!

It is a funny thing happens when we have workmen come to the house to do repairs. Once he accepts that they are welcomed on the property by us he is fine, but when they get into their vans to leave, he barks up as storm. It is easy to imagine him saying " And remember, I"ll be keeping an eye on you!". (yes, our dogs are on leash or behind a fence. No chasing vans)
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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 07-13-2019, 09:45 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CoffeeGirl View Post
Well Iím glad to hear we arenít the only one seeing this behavior! Sheís my first GSD & herding dog so it isnít something Iíve seen from a dog before. Kona is otherwise extremely confident about things in the environment, loud noises, fireworks, carts, vehicles... Not as confident about people, she warms to most of them after a minute (standard aloofness I guess) which may be factoring into this.

Thinking on it, she doesnt whine and act up as much if weíre out away from home but alone, like in a park. She doesnít like us separating but itís not unmanageable. Itís a crowded space like the pet store or Home Depot where itís worse.

Which sucks cause we really want and like to go places as a whole family. We may try a bit stronger corrections for it and just keep working at it to see if we make progress. Donít want to give up yet. I hope itís not a nerves issue. Sheís 18 months, so crossing my fingers we can work her though this still before sheís mature.
Keep at it. If she is otherwise confident (which mine is not) then it is likely you will be able to shape and train behavior away.
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