People aggression in house. - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-18-2016, 11:58 AM Thread Starter
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People aggression in house.

Hello, had a question for you guys before I brought in a trainer for an in home visit.

Zoey is very aggressive towards new comers in our home. When she is outside on a leash, she'll let anyone pet her, no problem. When it comes to my house, that's a different story.

She loves when my family comes over, it's my friends and wife's side of the family she doesn't want in. She is a very dominant dog but not possessive. I'm sick and tired of not being able to have any friends over because my dog wants to bite them.

I recently had my wife's mother and her brother over, she was fine with her mother but muzzle punched her brother in the face. (I had her wearing a muzzle because I don't trust her)

I also had a good friend of mine over and again, he was persistent on having her out hanging out with us. So I brought out her kennel in the living room and put her in it, she immediately started barking and lunging at him in the cage. I had him give her a could of tasty treats which she took willingly, ate it, and then went bake to barking and trying to bite him through the cage.

I even put a tug half in/half out of the cage so she could interact with him, they played tug for about 5-10 minutes, then she stopped, stared at him and lunged/barked at him. I grabbed the muzzle, put it on her and let her out. She was more interested in getting the muzzle off but she let him pet her for a while, didn't try to bite or bark at him.

The issue is, a lot of my family and friends are dog lovers, and they are persistent on having Zoey out and interacting with her. The thing that I dont get is she loves everyone outside of her house on leash (except other dogs) but when it comes to my house, shes a terror.


My wife does not want to bring in a trainer because:
1) I'm not changing the way I treat Zoey
2) I want her sleeping with me at night, not in some cage.
3) I want her on the couch with me
etc etc


Zoey is amazing when it is just me and my wife, shes so affectionate its crazy. Velcro dog but when it comes to her food or toys, I can take it away from her with no issues at all. I just wish we could share her love with friends and family without worrying shell attack.


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Zoey- Adopted Belgian Malinois on 4/29/12
Princess- WGSD 3/15/01-9/21/11 Forever would've been to short...

Last edited by Nickyb; 01-18-2016 at 12:06 PM.
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post #2 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-18-2016, 12:05 PM
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so what's your question?

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post #3 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-18-2016, 12:08 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Fodder View Post
so what's your question?
What do I do? Bring in the trainer anyway? Anyone have any recommendations on books to read or ways to train that may work?


I'm going to try to take her on a walk with the same friend that came over, have him take the leash, bring her outside with him, take her off leash and have him play with her (shes obsessed with tennis balls) and then have them both come inside at the same time.


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Zoey- Adopted Belgian Malinois on 4/29/12
Princess- WGSD 3/15/01-9/21/11 Forever would've been to short...
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post #4 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-18-2016, 12:18 PM
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Who has a problem?

If you are not going to change your ways, why to bring the trainer??? You need to reevaluate your position as a "leader of the pack" in your house. In your dog's eyes, you are not a leader (sleeping together, etc). When guests come, your dog takes charge and protects the family. I'm sorry, but it is you who have a problem.
Your dog sounds like a good dog to me, because she can behave well on the street.
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post #5 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-18-2016, 12:18 PM
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Yes, you should read "the leader of the pack" book.
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post #6 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-18-2016, 12:30 PM
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From what I read I am making an assumptions that you do not feel you can work with the dog to stop or alter this behavior. That being said and the fact that this dangerous behavior, I would say YES you need to find a trainer well versed in working high drive dogs to help you. If the price you and Zoey have to pay is that Zoey has to stay off the couch or bed for a while, give in on these points and train Zoey.

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post #7 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-18-2016, 01:09 PM
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Dog people or not why not just explain that it's in her best interest to keep her kenneled when people are over?

I can get wanting to have a dog that's stable in the house when people are over but this isn't something new from what I can remember, can you go back to the previous training that helped bring her under control in public and adapt it to your daily routine?

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post #8 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-18-2016, 01:16 PM
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99% of working with a trainer is training the owner to do the right things. THAT is what you are paying for. Nickyb, are you open to learning, even if it takes "work" (= not play time and fun) and doing some things that challenge you (= not continuing to do the things you've been doing)?
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post #9 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-18-2016, 01:27 PM
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If I remember right and correct me if I am wrong; these behaviors are similar to the behaviors Zoey was exhibiting before you got her/rescued her.

Bring a trainer in and be prepared to change YOUR handling along with training for Zoey.

It is great your friends and family are dog lovers, however, Zoey is your dog, your responsibility if she bites. Leave her put up if needed regardless what anyone wants.
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post #10 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-18-2016, 01:31 PM Thread Starter
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I'm more than open, I willing to put in work... It's the wife that doesn't want to follow the rules.

This is why we stopped training a year or so ago, my trainer says to walk Zoey in a heel, keep her off the bed and furniture. The wife does the complete opposite, she says "Zoey needs to be a dog, let her sniff and mark every 10-15 feet"

It's so frustrating, Zoey used to walk great on a leash in a heel, now shes ok but doesn't want to walk in a heel and pulls a little bit.


It just sucks, I wanted to pursue Zoey on personal protection training. Wife shot that down even though I took her for an entry class and my trainer said shed be a great fit, her drive is insane. She said it was going to turn her into a vicious dog..........


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Zoey- Adopted Belgian Malinois on 4/29/12
Princess- WGSD 3/15/01-9/21/11 Forever would've been to short...
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