Leash Reactive and Protective Behavior... - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 3 (permalink) Old 03-02-2018, 04:18 PM Thread Starter
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Exclamation Leash Reactive and Protective Behavior...

HI!

I have a wonderful german shepherd mix, who is now 4 months old.

This means now she can go on walks and visit other dogs since her Parvo shots are done now.

Olivia has lived with our older dog Murdoc for the past 2 months, and she loves him to death and doesn't like to part with him or myself.

To begin, my question is how can I stop or decrease the following behavior, I've read and watch tons of videos but nothing seems to really work in her case.

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In the house whenever we have guests she goes crazy barking and mild growling (no biting or snapping) and it is extremely embarrassing as it goes on and on and on. We did find that when we put her in the kennel during when my grandma came over she eventually calmed down and stopped barking. However this was after I hugged and sat next to my grandma on the floor, showing her it was ok.

Even after we let her out to say hello she barked every few minutes in my grandmas face and growled (similar to a mumble from a human). Of course my grandma didn't care because she has a german shepherd herself (whom she lets rule the house) and I don't want this behavior to continue. By the end my grandma was getting kisses and love from Olivia but only after this outburst.

This is only the second guest we've had in the house and i'm afraid she'll continue doing this.

So what can I do to stop this?


Next problem is whenever we are on a walk she barks and lunges...

She'll bark at people and dogs if they are across the street and growl. I know this is either nervous or protective, it is not aggressive as she won't hurt anyone.

Whenever a car goes by she won't bark but will attempt to chase it. Then when a person/dog comes by she'll bark and growl.

I'm going to try and take her to Petco's puppy playdate, i'm just so worried she'll scare the others with her crazy barking that I don't know how to introduce her...

Any help would be amazing,

Alyssa
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post #2 of 3 (permalink) Old 03-02-2018, 07:00 PM
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Welcome to the forum Alyssa! It sounds like your puppy would benefit from more exposure to things. I like to go to a local park and just sit and watch the activities. Start far enough away from people and other dogs, so your puppy can see them but is not yet reacting to them. Just sit calmly and let her get used to it. Over time, weeks usually, you can move a little closer to the action without her reacting. Of course, if she does just move back a little until she can be calm again. I throw in some basic obedience too on occasion, but mostly just sit quietly and take in the sights. I also used to take my puppy to car shows, home depot, and other pet friendly places once she got a little more comfortable with other dogs (for my puppy, dogs are her trigger, not people so much). I think exposure like that will help with both your issues, but would also highly recommend a puppy group class as well. It's a great venue for working on keeping her focused with other dogs and people around. It's also good to get training tips from someone with experience who can watch you work with your dog in person! Good Luck with her....And show us some pictures when you can!
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Tim
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post #3 of 3 (permalink) Old 03-02-2018, 09:06 PM
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Hi Alyssa. Tim already gave you great advice.
When Finn was 4 months old I remember wanting to send him back...he was just awful ie barking and lunging, yanking me up and down streets when out for walks and just overall out of control.

I really thought there was something wrong with him, so I took him to a trainer for an evaluation. The guy said that Finn was just flexing his muscles and seeing what he could get away with. Then he fit Finn for a prong collar and the next week we started basic obedience class.

You and your dog would benefit by formal obedience classes. Like Tim wrote, group lessons are great. you'll be with other dogs and it will be in a setting that is supervised by a professional.
I've found that the key to keeping your dog well behaved is being consistent with training. It's a lot of time and work but will pay off in the end.
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