They're gonna break my legs! - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 18 (permalink) Old 02-20-2009, 05:49 PM Thread Starter
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They're gonna break my legs!

Need some advice here! 11-month Luther is 85-90 pounds now. 2-year Otto is 68 pounds of solid muscle. Winter is back here in WNY and the dogs LOVE playing in the snow. We live on 43 acres and now that recalls are good, they can be off-leash.

The problem I'm having is their play-style. They run full-bore and then start body-slamming each other - rolling over and over in the snow. It's so fun to watch - UNTIL they decide to use me as part of the game. They aren't slamming me, but Luther likes to run behind me so he can "hide" and then pounce back out at Otto, at which point the slam-fest begins in earnest once again.

The problem is that the slam-fest is much too close to me for a few minutes until they take off across the field once again and I'm afraid I'm going to get taken out by the mad behemoths slamming back and forth.

I have been trying to "EH-EH" Luther as I see him coming, but they are so crazed, it's hard to stop the momentum. I do shoo them away, but it takes a minute or two (plenty of time to dislocate knees!) to get through to them and send 'em back out.

It seems the snow is what does this - they are fine - playing hard - but fine when there's no snow. I can recall them and do a "pack-walk" off-leash and maybe should do this more often during our snowy outings? I love to see them having so much fun, but need to find a way to communicate that this stuff has to happen a safe distance from Mom. Any ideas?

Martie
Luther GSD 3/18/08
Otto Mix Spring 07
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post #2 of 18 (permalink) Old 02-20-2009, 06:14 PM
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Re: They're gonna break my legs!

They may not be confunate with you as the leader, and are trying you and if you fall your done. So lock your knees turn your back when you see them running for you. And pray Ha They really wont hit you if your turned around but it is hard to trust,and then just calmly tell them no.What brats they are. Gotta love them. Best

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post #3 of 18 (permalink) Old 02-20-2009, 06:34 PM
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Re: They're gonna break my legs!

When I take Clover to play with her friends, they do the same thing. I am fairly solid at 6'6" and 240, but I make sure I bend my knees slightly so that if they do hit me, it does not take out my knees and helps me react. They do have fun don't they.

Clover - GSD 9 yr old Rescue
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post #4 of 18 (permalink) Old 02-20-2009, 06:55 PM Thread Starter
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Re: They're gonna break my legs!

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Originally Posted By: Weber1bWhen I take Clover to play with her friends, they do the same thing. I am fairly solid at 6'6" and 240, but I make sure I bend my knees slightly so that if they do hit me, it does not take out my knees and helps me react. They do have fun don't they.
Boy, do they EVER have fun! I do bend my knees and do my best to stay out of their path.

Princess55, I don't think there is a leadership issue (hopefully). I'm thinking that Luther needs a little confidence occasionally. Although Otto is smaller, he is a pretty dominant dog and if the play gets too rough, "little" Luther may be coming for support - or he is just wanting to include me in the game. Not sure which....

Martie
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post #5 of 18 (permalink) Old 02-20-2009, 06:55 PM
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Re: They're gonna break my legs!

I have 2-2 year olds and 1-6 month old GSD's when we go for walks in the field or the woods or even if I walk back and forth to the dog kennel I have a 5 foot walking stick that I always take with me if all 3 boys are out at the same time. The walking stick is part of my presence. I have only had to put it out in front of me a few times to ward them off. ( I have never hit them with it but I have put it out there so that they have run into it instead of me. It works very well.
The reason I use this is because the neighbor women had a 5 year old lab and he ran full force into her and shattered her knee, believe me I cannot afford to be off work for a couple of months like her.
So thats why I carry a big stick...LOL

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post #6 of 18 (permalink) Old 02-20-2009, 07:27 PM
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Re: They're gonna break my legs!

This is my boys on a daily basis...LOL
Here we come Mom....


This is why I take my walking stick with me...LOL
Buck out front, Pup in second and Lewie bringing up the rear!!!

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post #7 of 18 (permalink) Old 02-20-2009, 07:49 PM Thread Starter
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Re: They're gonna break my legs!

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Originally Posted By: BucksMomThis is my boys on a daily basis...LOL
Here we come Mom....


This is why I take my walking stick with me...LOL
Buck out front, Pup in second and Lewie bringing up the rear!!!
PERFECT! Thank you so much, BucksMom. (Replace your dogs with mine and this is a scene I see regularly here, too) I know that will work - and will give me an excuse to go get one! I've always looked at them in woodworking stores and thought they'd be so cool, but wondered if I'd ever really use one - now I know I will!

Thank you!

Martie
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post #8 of 18 (permalink) Old 02-20-2009, 08:37 PM
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Re: They're gonna break my legs!

Your welcome Marti, glad I could help.
When you get your walking stick you will have to post
a picture of it. Have fun walking!!!

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post #9 of 18 (permalink) Old 02-20-2009, 11:37 PM
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Re: They're gonna break my legs!

I like that idea. I think it would look cool out in the woods too!

Clover - GSD 9 yr old Rescue
R.I.P. Spats, Sophie, Emmie, Pooh Bear, Rogue, Max and Patton

Remember, if someone has a problem with you.........it is in fact their problem.
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post #10 of 18 (permalink) Old 02-22-2009, 08:36 AM Thread Starter
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Re: They're gonna break my legs!

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Originally Posted By: BucksMomYour welcome Marti, glad I could help.
When you get your walking stick you will have to post
a picture of it. Have fun walking!!!
No "real" walking stick yet - but I remembered my little flag pole - wood pole for hanging flags from your porch. It's thin and not all that sturdy, but the right length. I took it out on our walk yesterday and it really, really helps. Of course, if they really slammed into it, I'm sure it would break, but even this made a big difference. I just planted it in the ground as a barrier to the dogs when they came rolling near me. I think it was the combination of that - and me standing my ground - that worked to help me feel more confident and become a "solid" object that they were more cautious about.

Will post photos when I get the real one!

Thanks, again, BucksMom.

Martie
Luther GSD 3/18/08
Otto Mix Spring 07
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