Bad nerves or just scared or lack confidence? - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-21-2015, 11:00 PM Thread Starter
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Bad nerves or just scared or lack confidence?

Just five minutes ago I let Bella out to use the bathroom in our front yard. As I walk out the gate my neighbor is walking by. Then my neighbor walks up to us slowly. Bella instantly went behind me hiding as if she was scared. I never seen that before, I wasn't expecting her to react or anything but Bella usually isn't scared of anything that I've seen. Does this mean she has bad nerves or she was just a little spooked ? Or lack confidence ?
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-21-2015, 11:18 PM
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no idea.

How old is Bella. Does she knot this neighbor?

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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-21-2015, 11:48 PM Thread Starter
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She's ten months and she's knows the neighbors very well. She's very socialized, when the neighbor got closer she wagged her tail but stayed behind me while licking the neighbor
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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-22-2015, 12:18 AM Thread Starter
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I'm just nervous she's never done this before I don't know if this a sign for the future
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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-22-2015, 12:37 AM
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She was submitting to the neighbor out of fear. I wouldn't jump to any conclusions for a 10 month old. Dogs go through some weird stages in adolescence so take this with a grain of salt.
This doesn't necessarily mean it's a sign of things to come. It is a sign, though, that she does perceive fear from strangers. Whether she'll react submissively, naturally, boldly, reactively, etc is inconclusive right now.

How have you been socializing her with people?
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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-22-2015, 12:53 AM Thread Starter
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She was submitting to the neighbor out of fear. I wouldn't jump to any conclusions for a 10 month old. Dogs go through some weird stages in adolescence so take this with a grain of salt.
This doesn't necessarily mean it's a sign of things to come. It is a sign, though, that she does perceive fear from strangers. Whether she'll react submissively, naturally, boldly, reactively, etc is inconclusive right now.

How have you been socializing her with people?
From the time we got Bella at 3 months she came home to my mother in law house where her grand kids and dogs are there everyday. So she started with kids at a very young age. Then she moved to my house where we had two families living in one house. Over 12 people in the house that's including kids from elementary school to high school. We lived in a very friendly neighborhood so when I walked her, a lot of people would want to greet her and sit and play with her.

Then we moved to a army base after we got to know everyone (neighbors) we let Bella meet everyone also encounter with their babies never had a issues with strangers or anything at all. We always took her to the pet store with us we meet many of dogs. She also has two or three dog friends she play with daily. She is even good with cats. So I don't know where this came from. She doesn't bark at anyone unless my doorbell is going off or someone is walking through my backyard fence. Tonight was something different I never seen nothing like it she instantly went behind me I laughed it off but in the back of my mind I hated it because I knew she was scared or uncomfortable.
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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-22-2015, 01:03 AM Thread Starter
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And on top of that every little noise she hears she barks at. which is very new to me I mean it can be me flushing the toilet she will bark
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-22-2015, 05:52 AM
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Like I said, pups go through strange phases especially in adolescence. It's clearly a fear phase. It happens. It's normal. Nothing to worry about. I wouldn't jump and label this dog as having bad nerves. You'll figure that out in a year when you apply pressure in protection. I think it's a good thing that she perceives fear. Some dogs don't and that can bring complications when you're trying to channel defensive drive.

Everyone's opinion is subjective so I'm going to say something that is only my opinion. I would be very careful with how I socialize the pup, both with people and dogs. For example, I have a friend who recently got a new pup (i don't know the breed) and everyone that came through the door or yard was free to play with the new pup. I was at my friends party and observed how the party guests socialized with the dog. People who don't know dogs will inadvertently encourage bad behavior and submissiveness in the dog. For example, they'll play rough with the dog and encourage jumping and rough play, which will get very annoying when the pup gets older. Some people would roll the dog on its back, rub its belly and encourage licking aka doggy kisses. The dog is learning to be submissive towards strangers and, believe it or not, a dog being on his back with strange dogs or people isn't fun like it may appear. It can actually be very stressful and cause fear aggression towards other dogs or people because essentially the dog is being placed in a submissive position by a dominant stranger. Now, there's no way to know how this will manifest later because I've never had a dog that socialized openly without my careful supervision. I'd be very careful about a pups interactions with people in the socialization and adolescent phase of life.

Back to the topic at hand, I think this could be a phase. Work on your dogs confidence. Tug is a great tool for this.

Best.
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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-22-2015, 06:48 AM Thread Starter
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Like I said, pups go through strange phases especially in adolescence. It's clearly a fear phase. It happens. It's normal. Nothing to worry about. I wouldn't jump and label this dog as having bad nerves. You'll figure that out in a year when you apply pressure in protection. I think it's a good thing that she perceives fear. Some dogs don't and that can bring complications when you're trying to channel defensive drive.

Everyone's opinion is subjective so I'm going to say something that is only my opinion. I would be very careful with how I socialize the pup, both with people and dogs. For example, I have a friend who recently got a new pup (i don't know the breed) and everyone that came through the door or yard was free to play with the new pup. I was at my friends party and observed how the party guests socialized with the dog. People who don't know dogs will inadvertently encourage bad behavior and submissiveness in the dog. For example, they'll play rough with the dog and encourage jumping and rough play, which will get very annoying when the pup gets older. Some people would roll the dog on its back, rub its belly and encourage licking aka doggy kisses. The dog is learning to be submissive towards strangers and, believe it or not, a dog being on his back with strange dogs or people isn't fun like it may appear. It can actually be very stressful and cause fear aggression towards other dogs or people because essentially the dog is being placed in a submissive position by a dominant stranger. Now, there's no way to know how this will manifest later because I've never had a dog that socialized openly without my careful supervision. I'd be very careful about a pups interactions with people in the socialization and adolescent phase of life.

Back to the topic at hand, I think this could be a phase. Work on your dogs confidence. Tug is a great tool for this.

Best.
Ok thank you I'm a first time owner. I didn't know if this was a bad thing or not. I never seen anything like it. But thank you for shedding light to my situation
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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-22-2015, 09:01 AM
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GSD's ( and all dogs) generally go thru a fear period at about 9 or 10 months. This will pass. Don't correct her just stand with her and let her gain confidence from you.

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