5 Month Old Rescue German Shepherd Husky Mix - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 10-13-2019, 02:14 PM Thread Starter
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5 Month Old Rescue German Shepherd Husky Mix

Hey there, I have rescued a 5 Month Old german shepherd husky mix tjat er Sound on the side of the Road in the US. Er have brother hun back to Canada now and i am having a bit of trouble teaching him. He has been running off leash now for a while and would come back with ease and was always greated by a over the top good boy and pets and cuddles or with a really tasty treat as a reward. This behaviour was what we were wanting in him. All of the sudden he started to not be coming back the way we wanted to and would run off. We tried walking the other way to see if he would stay near him family and come back, we tried being over excited with treats ready and the usual call and whistle, nothing works when he has his mind on something else. A trainer told us to grab him when he comes back by the scruff of his neck and say NO and put him back on the leash. This i think has worked opposite for us as he is now scarred of me so when I let him off the leash and call from him to come back with “Kota, Come!” In a nice voice he will stop and look at me and I will say it again “Kota, Come!” And he will run the opposite way. I don’t know if he knows what he is doing wrong of if he has now associated “Kota, Come!” With being hurt... how can I fix this behaviour? I feel aweful and don’t want to hurt my dog and I want to love him and for him to love me but I want him to come back if I’m being serious if there is something that is going to unhurt him, a car or something in traffic. Should I not use the scruff of his neck anymore and should I just make him stay on the leash for now until he gets that under control? We rescued him when he was 4 Months old. (The vet thinks) and he is 5 months old now. Any advice helps! Thank you so much in advance.
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 10-13-2019, 02:30 PM
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Others will probably chime in that have more experience but I'll give my two cents.

I think you're right that correcting him for returning to you is not helping the situation. If I were you, I would never correct for coming to you. Anything negative really would be not advisable, such as calling, clipping on the leash and then leaving the fun. Even something as simple as that and your pup would associate negative things with coming to you.

I would use a long, long lead and practice recall. Be the coolest thing ever! Yummy treats, the best toys, running and playing.
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Last edited by CeraDean; 10-13-2019 at 02:38 PM.
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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 10-13-2019, 03:00 PM
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I have a GSD/Husky mix. First, Huskies are notorious escape artists. This doesn’t mean just finding ways to escape the house/yard, but it’s a super fun game for them to escape you as well. No amount of training is going to 100% overcome that natural desire. You can train them not to, but the second your eyes are off him, be prepared for him to run. I only allow mine off leash if we are hiking the desert in the winter (no one near), or when we run with the horses. These are the only two times I’m guaranteed a recall, because we are doing what he loves to do. Husky’s are stubborn, more stubborn than any breed I’ve had, and I’ve had A LOT. If they aren’t interested, good luck getting them there. They are dogs that want to please themselves over pleasing their owners, while GSD’s would rather please you than themselves. Mixing the two breeds doesn’t give you the traits you want out of both breeds. And Husky mentality normally is stronger than the GSD side.

I never correct Crios for taking off. It’s my fault, not his. He’s doing what is natural to him. Instead, I proof my house and yard to make sure he has no option to run. And we give him outlets that keep him mentally satisfied, like pulling sleds, carrying a weighted pack, agility (he so loves this). Basically I work with his natural preferences rather than trying to force him to be something else.

Long leads are great for teaching recall, so are e-collars if used correctly, but I wouldn’t ever rely on Crios’s recall to be completely off leash, with the two exceptions above.

Find a new trainer, the one you have is an idiot. I say that not judging you at all, but his methods. You want a balanced trainer that practices praise and corrections, not one over the other.
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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 10-13-2019, 03:42 PM
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Rule number one in handling ANY dog, never, ever punish for coming to you. Ever. For any reason. Find a new trainer.
Huskies are notorious runners. Five month old puppies are not going to have a reliable recall. They are puppies. They screw stuff up. It's part of their appeal.
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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 10-13-2019, 10:35 PM
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Got a shep/husky mix here too!

Agreed that you should never punish a dog for coming to you. Coming to you should always be rewarded and praised (no matter how irritated you feel :-). They should never feel afraid of coming to you.

Huskies are known for their prey drive and as much as they love you, they will take off after a cat or a deer or just take off for a long Run. So if your dog takes after his husky parent, he should stay on a long line (not go offleash).

If your dog takes after his shepherd parent, you might have a chance with offleash...train with long line first, a LOT, before you try offleash. My guy does OK offleash but there are only certain fields (mostly fenced, with part of one end open) where we let him off, and only for a short time.

Rumo ~ rescue shepherd/husky mix
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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 10-14-2019, 09:35 AM
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I have a GSD/Husky mix aswell. We got him at 10 weeks from a shelter and he never had this natural puppy following behavior at all. It was a pain in the a** to get him to where he is now, which is still far from proper off leash reliability at 1 1/2 years. I am lucky he doesn't have all too much of a prey drive but I figured the only times he doesn't come when called is when he just wants to run. If I exercised him on a bike or pulling his cart prior to doing an off leash walk he is doing perfectly. By now I can see whether his mind is set on mindlessly running or whether he is realiable at that moment. I do still attach a long leash but we have days where I can do an obedience session completely off leash without any problems by now. Daily training and try to never give him the opportunity to not come back to you.

“But you know, happiness can be found even in the darkest of times, if one only remembers to turn on the light.” ― Albus Dumbledore
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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 10-14-2019, 12:54 PM
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Couple of things. First off, no matter how mad you are, whenever your dog comes to you you never punish them for coming back to you. You have now taught your dog to associate coming toward you as a punishment. Even if you screamed your dogs name for an hour, whenever he comes to you you praise him. He should associate coming to you with fun!

Second, your dog does not fully understand the "come" (recall) command yet. Work on the recall command in controlled simple environments where he is sure to come to you when you call. Once he gets this down in an easy controlled environment, then slowly start shifting the context. Now that your dog starts to understand what you want him to do ("come"), then you need to change the location to help your dog clarify the cue and generalize his learning.

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