German Shepherds Forum banner

1 - 5 of 5 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
4 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hi,

Otto is a male white GSD, we have had him about 1 month and before that we think he was just in back yard for around 3 months with limited or no socialisation with other dogs and limited socialisation with people.
We enrolled him at dog training but when we arrived he started barking continually with his hackles up and one of the instructors came over and advised us not to join the class yet as he was too scared and to look up reactive behaviour on the web and dogmantics on YouTube. So for the rest of the time we just walked him around the edge of the park and he did get better over time.

He has been to a dog park a few times, the first time he was very scared, hackles up, tail down and hiding behind us so we left quickly. We went again and each time he seemed to be getting better and less scared of the dogs, the last time we went he didnt have a good experience at the start as a big group of dogs ran up to him to say hello and he got scared and ran away. Some of the dogs left and after a while he was a lot braver but still a couple of dogs were a bit much for him when they did come over to say hello. We are not going to any more dog parks now.

In the past couple of days Otto has developed a habit of jumping up and biting especially when he is on the lead, more so with my girlfriend, than me but last night he was starting to do it with me. He had done it before with my girlfriend before when she was holding a tennis ball in her hand but the past couple of days he is definitely doing it more and with more aggression as well. Overall I am stricter with him than my girlfriend. I have been feeding him all the time and I make him sit and wait for his food and he will now no problem at all, I can even take his food away from him while he is eating and he is not aggressive (is this still the thing to do or is this old school now?), I feed my other dog, 14 yr old female labrador first to show Otto he is down the pecking order (again is this old school?). My girlfriend is now feeding him one of his meals every day to "show him she is boss as well"
We make him sit and wait before going through doors and always make him go through last.
He is a quick learner but is definitely going through a naughty teenager phase.

We have spoken to a dog behaviourist and he is coming over on Saturday but to me his prices seem excessive (300$ Australian for 2.5-3 hours) and is talking about many visits, do you have any advice or recommended reading for us that can help us to advance him along the path to good behaviour.

Any help or advice is most welcome.
Thanks
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
6,106 Posts
Sounds like he's just excited.He can't jump if he is sitting.Have him sit then reward with throwing the ball for him.He will learn quickly compliance = reward.Don't hold the ball up at shoulder level or overhead!That's an invitation to jump for it.
Messing with their food can create anxiety and guarding behavior rather than prevent it.Dogs will create their own 'pecking order' despite how we humans wish it should be.I wouldn't interfere unless to prevent bullying by one of them.
Stay out of the dog park for now.Observe the world from a distance while your pup learns how to deal and gains confidence.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,085 Posts
A pup that age needs a lot of exercise, way more than most get!

You'll find he will behave much more reasonably after he's run a mile or 10!

My dog at that age knew how to heel, and we practiced all the time. But she tended to forge constantly, unless she'd first had a chance to run off some of her youthful exuberance! Then she'd heel perfectly!

At that age I'd recommend using most of the time you have playing and exercising! Training still happens, but has to take the backseat for a bit...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
He does get tired pretty quickly, we were throwign the ball for him a couple of weeks ago and after about 10 throws he came back and lay down, he chased the ball a few more times after that but not many. When we are walking him on the lead it does seem like he could walk forever though, we did wonder if he cant run much because he wasnt used to it and so his muscles and body need to adjust to that.

At that age I'd recommend using most of the time you have playing and exercising! Training still happens, but has to take the backseat for a bit...
This had crossed my mind that maybe the heel work needs to take a backseat for the moment and we just let him out in this big bad world for him to explore and hopefully get over his fears
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,085 Posts
Yep, and don't be shy about telling him NO! Jumpinh on you and biting especially are things you want to extinguish NOW, before he gets any older. Just balance it with lots of exercise and play so that he has a bit better control and a little less energy when you do!

Good luck!
 
1 - 5 of 5 Posts
Top