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Discussion Starter #1
My shepherd is two and has always been a very friendly dog with people and dogs. We very seldom have her on a leash because we live ina very country area and she minds well. Well today i went to load her up in the truckmso we can go walk through the woods and a neighbor was walking his dog.( A male mix shepherd) BELLA wasted no time in making sure he knew she was there she went up to him with all her hair spiked and smelled him then he/ she started to go at it. Nothing serious but enough for concern for me since shes never done it. I called her back and she came but she has never done that. Then again today another neighbor was walking there small jackrussell and she opened my front door gate and ran after the dog i didnt see what happend i could only hear all the barking i ran after her and she came back right away and went and layed down in her kennel. I dont know why she would start acting like this now? My only guess with the dogs is they always walk by our fence and she hates it but she has never lunged at other dogs. In a training class she submitted to a chihuahua so why now? any advice?
 

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She is growing up and maturing. Has started asserting herself and letting other dogs know that they are in her territory. GSDs are pretty much puppies until they are two, so she is just at that age where the submissive puppy goes away, and the take-charge adult come in.

Lots and lots and lots of obedience work for her. Start having her on leash so you can stop her from running after other dogs; the more she gets to "practice" this new behaviour, the more it will become set. Then go back to a lot of obedience drills, have her under obedience control so she is tuned to you, not looking around for dogs to run after. It will take time and CONSISTENT effort, but this CAN be stopped now if you commit yourself to it.

My rescue was a runner, always going after something. It took a lot of work, and LOTS of obedience, and leashes leashes leashes! but she is so much better and reliable now! I too live in the boonies, lots of free off-leash runs in the fields and trails, but even in my own driveway I'd have her on long-lines, or sitting/downing in obedience to me, as there are a lot of loose dogs around here. FINALLY we are at the point where she just whines and paces if she sees another dog, knows not to run after them, but I still watch and keep her under control. No doubt she will run after another dog and want to start a scuffle if she gets half a chance, so my focus is always on managing her so that she does not even get a chance to do so.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
i am thinking of taking her back to the dog parks and scheduling play dates we live in Germany and the weather is so cold here but I'm determined to get her under control. Do you think this is a good idea. i have to do something this summer i will be going to stay at my moms while we buy our house and she has a 3 1/2 yr old rottie i am so worried now with her behavior that wont be possible :(
 

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IF her behavior has changed drastically you might want to have her checked by a vet, including a thyroid panel.

It could well be that she's just maturing & is less tolerant of other dogs as an adult. Many dogs are still maturing mentally & emotionally past their 2nd birthday. Some are still maturing past their 3rd b-day.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
today was the first time shes done that. Last week same dog was loose in the street and she ignored him then a few days later he charged the fence barking and snapping at her. Today it was me and my son outside and i don't think she was liking the fact that he was 4 ft away from us (still not acceptable) The second dog today she had no reason at all he's little and i have a jack russell myself so idk... i will monitor her and see friday i might meet some new people and new dogs and see how she does on a leash of course.
 

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Some dogs are very dog intolerant & even the best trainers wind up keeping them separated but most can co-exist.

Set *your* expectations & with firm, fair training make it clear what you need from her. Convey confidence & resolve. *You* are in charge. *You* make the rules. Definitely practice NILIF to help get this msg across. IF you are anxious & lack confidence she'll read that & it will undermine your efforts. Success with her will help to boost your confidence & your understanding. NILIF will help to set you both up to succeed rather than fail.
 

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Don't make excuses for her. (Something all of us are prone to doing at one time or another). As you said, Not Acceptable. Try to engage her before another dog gets her attention. Heap praise on calm, appropriate behavior. GSD are pleasers & LOVE to know they're making us happy which can make them very amenable to training.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Some dogs are very dog intolerant & even the best trainers wind up keeping them separated but most can co-exist.

Set *your* expectations & with firm, fair training make it clear what you need from her. Convey confidence & resolve. *You* are in charge. *You* make the rules. Definitely practice NILIF to help get this msg across. IF you are anxious & lack confidence she'll read that & it will undermine your efforts. Success with her will help to boost your confidence & your understanding. NILIF will help to set you both up to succeed rather than fail.
what is NILIF? Today both times when i called her she snapped right out of it she understands that i am The boss I'm hoping with more effort and training she will get better lord knows i need her too lol
 

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NILIF=Nothing In Life Is Free

It sounds like she's responsive to you & biddable. Both qualities will help a lot with this. These are qualities every GSD should have, but sadly, GSDs lacking these qualities are increasingly common.
 
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