dog charges at people or other dogs - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-13-2018, 10:16 PM Thread Starter
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Unhappy dog charges at people or other dogs

When I walk my GS dog and someone is walking on the other side of the road, she goes from being calm and lovely to charging toward the other person and barking alot. But when we are in the house and someone comes to the door, she will hide out of the way and not bark. I don't understand??
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-14-2018, 02:19 PM
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It could be that your dog is unsure of herself. In that case it may be that the first dog that barks wins! It is a ploy to try to show the other dog that she is tough and should be left alone. What you need to do is use a collar and leash, not a no pull harness, and teach your girl what to do instead. It will take time and distance and someone watching how you work. Timing of corrections and rewards for good behavior can make a difference in how quickly your girl learns. Having a good trainer watch and give tips can help a lot.

The more your girl builds her relationship with you and realizes that you are in charge of situations, not her, the more relaxed she will be on walks. She will also learn to relax at home. If she knows that no matter what you are a team and she can depend on you the more she will blossom.

In the meantime, cross the street when you see other dogs. It is like a dance in our neighborhood. The distance of opposite sidewalks takes some of the pressure off. Also, watch your dog closely. Before she even starts barking you want to encourage her to look at you and ignore the other person / dog. When the other person has passed by if she has been calmly looking at you or sat quietly by your side, then praise and reward. What does she like? Tug games or treats? Either is a nice reward for good behavior. For awhile always carry some nice reward with you. Once she has focused on someone to bark at don't expect the reward to get her attention. It is too late then. Your best bet is to turn away and wait for her to calm down. Continue the walk and try again your next encounter.
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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-14-2018, 02:32 PM
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@car2ner has a lot of great input. When I first started walking Mei, she would do the same thing. Whenever she saw another dog or person out walking she would get super excited. What I quickly learned to do is to have one of her favorite toys, preferably a squeak toy, and when ever you see a person/dog approach get her attention with the toy. I would stop with the walk and do this until they are passed. I would then reward her with some treats for having her focus on me during that time. You have to be on the lookout though. Constant head on a swivel watching to see what is coming up. One other thing I would do is like before, stop, but then while the distraction passes, I get her attention and do some quick 'sit' commands or 'shake' with some treats. I've also just stopped, had her sit and then get down to her level keeping her in a sit and just observe the distraction as it passes.

These are just some things I did. I cannot remember the last time she's lunged or charged at someone or another dog that is on a walk. We can now just walk right past. I'll still get her attention as we are walking past a person until the distraction is gone. I like the command 'eyes' and she knows to make eye contact.

Good luck!!
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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-14-2018, 10:23 PM
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She is fearful. I'd avoid or keep distance and reassure/reward calm behavior.
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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-15-2018, 02:10 AM
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Originally Posted by Erin Reed View Post
When I walk my GS dog and someone is walking on the other side of the road, she goes from being calm and lovely to charging toward the other person and barking alot. But when we are in the house and someone comes to the door, she will hide out of the way and not bark. I don't understand??

My pup is having the same issues when taking him out for walks, I am 48kg and he is strong, I really need to find a solution. But he does not bark or lunge at the dogs in his group class, just when he is out and walking with me or my sister. Weird thing. Anyway, I think things have been worse with our trainer (he says it was our fault for overprotecting him, long story, I belive that is true, but still he is quite traditional as a trainer and results are not so good so far regarding his advice on these behaviors). So, I am looking for another trainer, and practicing rewards every time he remains calm, some days are better.



If anything starts working for you, please let me know.
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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-15-2018, 05:35 AM
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My pup is having the same issues when taking him out for walks, I am 48kg and he is strong, I really need to find a solution. But he does not bark or lunge at the dogs in his group class, just when he is out and walking with me or my sister. Weird thing. Anyway, I think things have been worse with our trainer (he says it was our fault for overprotecting him, long story, I belive that is true, but still he is quite traditional as a trainer and results are not so good so far regarding his advice on these behaviors). So, I am looking for another trainer, and practicing rewards every time he remains calm, some days are better.



If anything starts working for you, please let me know.
My gal dog got a fright from our first trainer. Not his fault. He wanted to see if she would begin working protection work. He did everything he normally would with a pup. She was just in a funky state at the time. It took her a long time after that to even get close enough to take food from him. Eventually I found a couple of other trainers and she did better. They were teaching different objective so she had no conflict with them.

There is absolutely nothing wrong with trying out different trainers. You need to find one that clicks with you and your dog and what you are trying to achieve. And yes, I still highly recommend the first trainer I went to. It just didn't work for my gal-dog.

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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-15-2018, 07:58 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Erin Reed View Post
When I walk my GS dog and someone is walking on the other side of the road, she goes from being calm and lovely to charging toward the other person and barking alot. But when we are in the house and someone comes to the door, she will hide out of the way and not bark. I don't understand??[IMG class=inlineimg]/forum/images/Germanshepherds_2016/smilies/tango_face_sad.png[/IMG]

My pup is having the same issues when taking him out for walks, I am 48kg and he is strong, I really need to find a solution. But he does not bark or lunge at the dogs in his group class, just when he is out and walking with me or my sister. Weird thing. Anyway, I think things have been worse with our trainer (he says it was our fault for overprotecting him, long story, I belive that is true, but still he is quite traditional as a trainer and results are not so good so far regarding his advice on these behaviors). So, I am looking for another trainer, and practicing rewards every time he remains calm, some days are better.



If anything starts working for you, please let me know.
Teaching an eye-contact command really helps with my gal -- when she stares at me instead of the approaching dog she can't carry out the whole bark and lunge drama anymore. Another trick that helps with my gal is to take several steps back from the other dog and ask her to sit facing me, this works exceptionally well after I get the hang of applying the leash pressure.

Spaying also helps in our case, though there is a controversy going on about spaying/neutering that you might want to research into.

Good luck, my gal used to bark and lunge on leash at almost any dogs who were a bit close by as well, but now she can even run pass other dogs on the same sidewalk without barking (well...at least most of the times!). So there is definitely hope!
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-15-2018, 08:12 AM
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ALSO watch how you hold your leash. If you get nervous and tighten up the leash in anticipation it will signal your dog that trouble might be up ahead. When you see another dog calm your breathing...count trees or doors or breaths. Get up to ten. Relax your arm and hand. If you dog does pull as soon as you feel her relax loosen the leash and remove all leash pressure. Pulling back on a leash encourages a dog to pull forward against it. Better to use your legs and swing your dog around in a circle to break a hard stare.

Remember, many of us have been in your shoes. Our dogs could lunge because they are fearful, or they want to play, or the other dog looks like they are challenging yours, or are just leash frustrated because they want to go say Hi and can't. Bottom line is almost always, be calm and teach the rules. Reward when the dog is successful and take a deep breath and move on when they aren't.
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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-15-2018, 08:23 PM
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My gal dog got a fright from our first trainer. Not his fault. He wanted to see if she would begin working protection work. He did everything he normally would with a pup. She was just in a funky state at the time. It took her a long time after that to even get close enough to take food from him. Eventually I found a couple of other trainers and she did better. They were teaching different objective so she had no conflict with them.

There is absolutely nothing wrong with trying out different trainers. You need to find one that clicks with you and your dog and what you are trying to achieve. And yes, I still highly recommend the first trainer I went to. It just didn't work for my gal-dog.



Thanks, I believe will keep looking for another trainer. The one he has right now, it is not working and kind of scares him. Like you said, every dog needs a different trainer. Would you suggest a prong? Just to help us out, he used one three times or so in his group class and really helped, after using it, and going back to his he seemed quite better.
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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-15-2018, 08:28 PM
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Teaching an eye-contact command really helps with my gal -- when she stares at me instead of the approaching dog she can't carry out the whole bark and lunge drama anymore. Another trick that helps with my gal is to take several steps back from the other dog and ask her to sit facing me, this works exceptionally well after I get the hang of applying the leash pressure.

Spaying also helps in our case, though there is a controversy going on about spaying/neutering that you might want to research into.

Good luck, my gal used to bark and lunge on leash at almost any dogs who were a bit close by as well, but now she can even run pass other dogs on the same sidewalk without barking (well...at least most of the times!). So there is definitely hope!



Thank you so much. I just never struggled with this behaviors with a pup (they appeared after parvo), and we will keep working, hopefully they will go like with your dog.

We have been trying the eye contact, but most time does not work. At least not with no treats.
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