Being physical with our gsd's (two questions) - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-29-2015, 12:13 AM Thread Starter
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Being physical with our gsd's (two questions)

So I'm very psychical with ghost, what I mean by that is when he doesn't listen he gets a bop/smack on head/chest area. Now it's not like I'm pimp slapping him or trying to hurt him, it's more of hey listen or don't do that. I'm wondering your guys opinion on that type of discipline, do keep in mind it's not the only thing I do I also do the whole no with deep voice and such and go platz on your bed too. Also also keep in him he is a big boy, he is only 1 year and 3 months and is 125 pounds.

Also I am curious about your guys opinion on being physical with our gsd's when playing with them? I personal love to wrestle with ghost and by that I mean full on on the ground/bed grabbing his legs and he (not too hard but enough for me to know he has me) biting me and we also enjoy a thing I that (it's going to sound mean but it really is) I slap him on the side of the nose alternating sides with each hand, now I'm not pimp slapping him it's more of a bop and then he goes to grab my hand he loves this by my parents say it's super mean. But there's times he will walk up to me and slap his the side of his nose into my hand tying to get me to play, I also (again ganna sound mean as heck) punch him in the upper lip. Now when I say punch I'm not trying to hurt him just tapping him quickly and again alternating hands which ends up making him make some funny faces but again he seems to love it, and he knows as soon as I say ok that's enough no more he stops instantly. We have played like this ever since he was 3 months, although it sucked back then because them sharp puppy teeth. So yeah just curious about your guys opinion on this type of playing with our gsd's? How do u guys play with yours? I'd love to know

Here's a photo from him and I playing last night (he looks so mean)
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post #2 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-29-2015, 12:16 AM Thread Starter
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P.s. The photo was takin during the face slapping and nose booping
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post #3 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-29-2015, 12:40 AM
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No opinion on playfully bopping the sides of his face. I know many people do this (though I personally do not) and their dogs seem to have great fun with it.

I do have an opinion of correcting him physically, especially with your hand and his FACE. I am of the mindset that a dog should not equate hands with punishment, certainly not as the normal way you choose to dissuade. him from his behaviors you don't like. IMO, a dog who is smacked/bopped in an aversive manner will learn to avoid those hands. Now, shepherds are so loyal, he may be the kind of dog that YOU could absolutely horrifically abuse and he would never curl a lip at you. Maybe he isn't, but my belief is that it makes a dog more apt to bite someone who may be simply trying to pet them. If a dog doesn't know if a hand is going to offer a treat, a pet, or a slap? He may well decide the slap isn't worth it and he's going to let that hand have it (even if it meant well.)

Always tread with extreme caution when using physical punishment. Do you do NILIF with your dog? (Nothing in life is free) if not, you may want to start it. It is a totally hands off (literally speaking) approach that really helps a dog learn to be respectful of your wishes. If you are having a hard time moving him from place to place, let him drag a short leash around the house. Tell him, "Ghost, off!" or "down!" or whatever word you use, and if he doesn't, use the lead to make him get off. Then reward! He will pick it up quick.
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post #4 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-29-2015, 02:50 AM
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I would not slap or bop his face/chest for punishment. There are other ways to correct him as noted by T-Bone's Mama.

You mentioned that he is 15 months old. Please don't let him play bite your hands. That could lead to real biting some day. You never know if and when that could get out of hand if a dog gets over excited. That should be discouraged. He is entering his terrible teens and will need more structure. Have you considered joining a GSD club for fun and maybe doing some dog sports with him? I don't know where you both are at in training, you may need to do some before you can do sports, but you might find it a lot of fun.

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post #5 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-29-2015, 11:15 AM
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In my opinion, I think you already know this isn't right just by the fact that you are questioning your way of doing.

I personally think that this is going to lead to aggression at some point. And that is in no way fair to your dog. Since he's the one who might be paying for this with his life.

I will not give examples of how you should interact with your dog either, since I also think you already know.
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post #6 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-29-2015, 11:18 AM
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I just don't think it necessary . It does not instill trust , strengthen the bond he should have and probably wants. I have never had to do this. I believe in physical corrections but not by hand directly.
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post #7 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-29-2015, 11:41 AM
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In all honesty Austin, don't cry when you get bit and if ghost weighs 125Lbs, I'd really like to see a picture of him on a scale. An honest, fair physical correction is one thing, I think its more likely from what you're saying that its all going to be a complete blur in his mind and not really be anything productive.
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post #8 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-29-2015, 11:54 AM
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I think it's a shame when someone chooses to punish their dog unfairly rather than teach them what they want them to do. As Steve said, an honest, fair correction that is clear to the dog is one thing. That is not what you are doing.

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post #9 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-29-2015, 12:12 PM
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Wow. You're not supposed to be the bratty 10 year old brother to this dog. This is one of the reasons children have to be taught how to behave around a dog - normally, adults know better.

This "communication" with him is going to do nothing but make him a dog that is going to turn on everyone and have to be put down. Every time you slap or punch his head is letting him know you don't really care about communication, just hitting. There are a million other ways to exercise and train your pup.

You play with him - he gets slapped and punched. You punish him - he gets slapped and punched. His reaction is trying to deal with your lack of understanding. There are ways to train a dog. You are sending so many mixed signals - it's scary. Please stop hitting the dog. It's not good for training and it's not good for play. Picture yourself with the mind of a three year old and someone more than twice your size doing this to you..... it is very damaging and may be too late to reverse without a professional trainer.
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post #10 of 26 (permalink) Old 10-29-2015, 01:45 PM
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You maybe making your dog weary of your hands in a bad way. Your hands are for trust and comfort. Don't get me wrong I wrestle with my boy. You say he has a good off button, you can lose that control if your not careful. You could be badgering the dog, but your dog maybe taking it as some kind of attention is better than none. Just my 2 cents.
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