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Hey everyone, so i have a 8 month old male gsd who up until a week ago wouldn’t bark at strangers(unless approaching our property) and would completely ignore other dogs. we could loose leash or even heel without a leash in public and he would ignore everything. all of a sudden he’s lunging and barking at kids, dogs, people etc...is this a normal phase? dominance? insecurity? what may be happening? it’s like a night and day transformation
 

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I personally wouldn't jump to a prong collar right away. It really depends on the dog, and what your relationship is like, as well as, how much foundational training he's had.

Age and maturity with my dog brought on several immediate and drastic changes in behavior. She was totally friendly to EVERYONE, then overnight aloof. To everyone, even people she'd known well for a time.

She LOVED to play and wrestle with other dogs, all or any. Then one day, play like that was beneath her! She did not play with any dog at all between about 9 and 16 months, then she decided that occasional, but highly selective play was okay.

It's all part of the maturation process. Clearly show them what is unacceptable, and promote what you want your dog to be - when he grows up. It'll all work itself out in time, just refrain from making a big deal out of it. He's good....just hormones and age...
 

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Yeah, it's part of the adolescent stage. He will test ya. For example, once mine entered that stage, he started fighting me on the leash again.
 

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Your kid is a teenager. Mine is almost 8 mos old and suddenly, it’s like the constant training he’s been receiving for months just flew out his big ears.

It’s not dominance, aggression, etc. Its called being a teenager.

Be the same calm, sane, gentle, consistent person you’ve been. Yes, he’s bigger. Yes, you’ll have to run faster to snag him if he plays Dodge Human. But he’s the same puppy you’ve always loved.

This little booklet on Dogwise and Amazon is inexpensive, pretty helpful and reassuring if
you need. The ebook costs $1.95 and can be in your hands within a couple minutes.

“Adolescent Dog Survival Guide”

https://www.dogwise.com/adolescent-dog-survival-guide-dogwise-solutions/


Just take a ton of photos. Load up on treats and train, train, train.

Training tricks is a great way to redirect the adolescent brain. It’s fun for you so no pressure on the pup. The more we use his brain, the more neural pathways we build (so the more he learns, the more he *can* learn). And a mentally tired dog tends to be an easier to manage teenager:

https://www.dogwise.com/search.php?search_query=Kyra&section=product

I like “101 Dog Tricks” but any of these are good. Just keep in mind your pup’s age and don’t train any tricks that might stress his young body.

Puppy Exercise Guidelines: https://www.avidogzink.com/shop/posters/puppy-exercise-guideline-poster/

Soon enough, we’ll have reasonable adult dogs and be wishing we had had our puppies just a little while longer.
 

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I personally wouldn't jump to a prong collar right away. It really depends on the dog, and what your relationship is like, as well as, how much foundational training he's had.

..
Me neither.

The second fear stage occurs during adolescence. If we don’t make a big thing of whatever our pup is suddenly afraid of/reacts to, but just reassure him and move past it, he’ll almost certainly be fine.

With a prong collar on a pup, not only is that thing (a big rock, kite, blowing plastic bag, UPS truck, whatever...) suddenly scary, but if the dog pulls, you’ve now associated physical pain with the scary thing. That’s an excellent way to permanently imprint fear.

Prong collars are tools to be used under specific training conditions, if they must be used at all. They don’t belong on puppies.
 

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To each his own. 8 months is the perfect time to introduce a prong collar. Use it correctly and the dog will learn and respond. I’m not a yank and jerk guy. The dog needs to feel some discomfort to reinforce the verbal “no”. My dog controls the correction, not me when it lunges, barks and pulls for whatever reason. For other things like jumping up on the counter, a slight pull down and a no.

In my experience with my 6 month old, he’s a different dog since introducing it. Never met a trainer that didn’t use a prong. I’ve met trainers that pull the crap out of the dog, that’s not necessary.

OP, talk to a trainer.
 

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My girl did the same thing at the same age. She was so friendly and excited to meet new dogs or people, and all of a sudden at 8 months she started growling/barking at strangers on walks. It freaked me out ;)

He is trying to figure out his world, and his job in that world. Yes it's a phase, but your dog could go two ways depending on your handling skills. He can understand that it's not his place to do that, or he could start thinking that his job is to protect himself and his loved ones from passer bys.

I'm not a fan of the prong collar but you do you.

What I am a fan of though, is the word NO. Most likely your dog knows what that means by now.

For us, no means absolutely, no. If you're doing anything and I say no, you MUST stop whatever behaviour. Otherwise, there is a consequence such as crate, time out, no more play/attention, or if we are on a walk, I completely stop talking and it's heel-sit-heel-sit till we get home and mom is NOT HAPPY. If you are consistent with that (use it when really, it's no, and no means no.. every. single. time.), he will very much understand that he must stop whatever he is doing when you say it.

I also use "careful" which means "I know what you're about to do, and I'm not ok with it .. you have a chance to not do it before the consequence comes". That was a very easy word for her to learn - I watch her all the time, I know her, and if she's lurking at the table for leftovers, heading towards the trash can, looking at an item she's not supposed to pick up, I say "carefuuuul" ..

And then there's "you're ok" .. said in a calm, happy way, kind of "oh come on, everything's fine!". I've been using that every time she seems a bit stressed about something that shouldn't be stressful. You probably naturally came up with some kind of similar phrase of your own.

Your dog should never be aloud to growl/bark at people minding their own business in the streets. He is not the street police, so you need to stop that behaviour. Watch him when you're on a walk and be ready to intervene. When you feel like he's about to bark, say careful ... you're ok (or whatever word that might calm him); if he barks, it's NO. Sit. Look at me. If he does that, yesss .. good boy!!! *praise* *happiness* *play* *treat* (whatever works) .. if he doesn't .. look mad, give him a louder NO and walk home doing heel-sit-heel-sit .. no treats, no praise for the heel-sitting .. look unhappy the whole way. It took mine ONE time of heel-sit walk home and be mad, and a few days of 'careful-you're ok" where I felt like she was about to lose it, but she stopped herself. She is completely fine now.

I hope that helps!
 

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In my experience with my 6 month old, he’s a different dog since introducing it. Never met a trainer that didn’t use a prong

OP, talk to a trainer.
Yes, a *puppy* in a prong “is a different dog.” You just said it yourself. But most people like their puppies and don’t want a different dog. Fear shuts down dogs, especially puppies. They do become different. Is that really your goal?

I don’t want to sound snarky, but you've never met a trainer that doesn’t use a prong collar it’s because either you aren’t actively searching for ones who don’t or you don’t know how to find them. I honestly don’t know which.

They’re out there. I found one in your area with excellent credentials using just a few keystrokes.

We rarely find what we don’t seek. If you’d like to consult with one, though, I’d be happy to help.
 

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[/QUOTE]Otherwise, there is a consequence such as crate, time out, no more play/attention, or if we are on a walk, I completely stop talking and it's heel-sit-heel-sit till we get home and mom is NOT HAPPY. If you are consistent with that (use it when really, it's no, and no means no.. every. single. time.), he will very much understand that he must stop whatever he is doing when you say it. ![/QUOTE]

I strongly encourage you not to do this. Dogs do not make the association that they are being punished for a behavior that occurred previously to entering the crate. They will just grow to dislike their crate if you put them while
Upset due to a previous behavior. A “time out” does not work on dogs. Although most see their dogs/pups as kids, they are not the same. Dogs are not human.

Just my 2 cents. Take it for what it’s worth.






Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

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Yes, a *puppy* in a prong “is a different dog.” You just said it yourself. But most people like their puppies and don’t want a different dog. Fear shuts down dogs, especially puppies. They do become different. Is that really your goal?



I don’t want to sound snarky, but you've never met a trainer that doesn’t use a prong collar it’s because either you aren’t actively searching for ones who don’t or you don’t know how to find them. I honestly don’t know which.



They’re out there. I found one in your area with excellent credentials using just a few keystrokes.



We rarely find what we don’t seek. If you’d like to consult with one, though, I’d be happy to help.


I think this is a disagreement about training methods. Does not help op. Frisco is not wrong for using a prong. Neither are you for not using one.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

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Yes, a *puppy* in a prong “is a different dog.” You just said it yourself. But most people like their puppies and don’t want a different dog. Fear shuts down dogs, especially puppies. They do become different. Is that really your goal?



I don’t want to sound snarky, but you've never met a trainer that doesn’t use a prong collar it’s because either you aren’t actively searching for ones who don’t or you don’t know how to find them. I honestly don’t know which.



They’re out there. I found one in your area with excellent credentials using just a few keystrokes.



We rarely find what we don’t seek. If you’d like to consult with one, though, I’d be happy to help.


Oh boy, another lovely know it all member. As I said, to each his own. You don’t know me, you don’t know my dog, I don’t know you and I don’t know your dogs. I don’t know the OP but I’m not assuming they are an idiot and trust they will do their research. I know what my experiences are which include my trusted breeder and trainers who have no problem with the prong at six months for light training. Get off you soapbox and don’t insinuate I have put fear in my dog.

Again you know nothing about me. We have enough loud mouths around here making broad assumptions from a two sentence post.

To each his own. Show some humility. It goes a long way. Don’t you have anything better to do that to argue on the internet? I’m not arguing with you. Get over yourself. You know NOTHING about my goals. Go play with your pet and put the keyboard down.

I wasn’t arguing with you. Why do you feel the need to argue with me and project things about me and my training you know nothing about.

[REMOVED]
 

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My girl did the same thing at the same age. She was so friendly and excited to meet new dogs or people, and all of a sudden at 8 months she started growling/barking at strangers on walks. It freaked me out ;)

He is trying to figure out his world, and his job in that world. Yes it's a phase, but your dog could go two ways depending on your handling skills. He can understand that it's not his place to do that, or he could start thinking that his job is to protect himself and his loved ones from passer bys.

I'm not a fan of the prong collar but you do you.

What I am a fan of though, is the word NO. Most likely your dog knows what that means by now.

For us, no means absolutely, no. If you're doing anything and I say no, you MUST stop whatever behaviour. Otherwise, there is a consequence such as crate, time out, no more play/attention, or if we are on a walk, I completely stop talking and it's heel-sit-heel-sit till we get home and mom is NOT HAPPY. If you are consistent with that (use it when really, it's no, and no means no.. every. single. time.), he will very much understand that he must stop whatever he is doing when you say it.

I also use "careful" which means "I know what you're about to do, and I'm not ok with it .. you have a chance to not do it before the consequence comes". That was a very easy word for her to learn - I watch her all the time, I know her, and if she's lurking at the table for leftovers, heading towards the trash can, looking at an item she's not supposed to pick up, I say "carefuuuul" ..

And then there's "you're ok" .. said in a calm, happy way, kind of "oh come on, everything's fine!". I've been using that every time she seems a bit stressed about something that shouldn't be stressful. You probably naturally came up with some kind of similar phrase of your own.

Your dog should never be aloud to growl/bark at people minding their own business in the streets. He is not the street police, so you need to stop that behaviour. Watch him when you're on a walk and be ready to intervene. When you feel like he's about to bark, say careful ... you're ok (or whatever word that might calm him); if he barks, it's NO. Sit. Look at me. If he does that, yesss .. good boy!!! *praise* *happiness* *play* *treat* (whatever works) .. if he doesn't .. look mad, give him a louder NO and walk home doing heel-sit-heel-sit .. no treats, no praise for the heel-sitting .. look unhappy the whole way. It took mine ONE time of heel-sit walk home and be mad, and a few days of 'careful-you're ok" where I felt like she was about to lose it, but she stopped herself. She is completely fine now.

I hope that helps!
Good advice. Puppies should be trained with as few aversives as possible. One of the most important things I have found to be effective IS to teach Yes and No. I have to laugh at how you use heeling and sit as a correction for misbehavior.
 

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Yes, a *puppy* in a prong “is a different dog.” You just said it yourself. But most people like their puppies and don’t want a different dog. Fear shuts down dogs, especially puppies. They do become different. Is that really your goal?

I don’t want to sound snarky, but you've never met a trainer that doesn’t use a prong collar it’s because either you aren’t actively searching for ones who don’t or you don’t know how to find them. I honestly don’t know which.

They’re out there. I found one in your area with excellent credentials using just a few keystrokes.

We rarely find what we don’t seek. If you’d like to consult with one, though, I’d be happy to help.
Most of the professional trainers that I know don't use or recommend prongs on a puppy. There is a time and place for everything but teaching a puppy to learn and teaching simple obedience can be taught in many ways without using discomfort or pain. Great post!
 

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I hope those posting fantastic advice on training puppies without aversives won't be discouraged from sharing their knowledge. There are a lot of ways to train a puppy and many people on here prefer to train puppies with positive methods. I also know that some of the professional dog trainers on here don't use prongs. They aren't against them, but they get good results with other methods and don't use them. Zola123 and 4K9Mom, thank you so much for taking the time to share your methods. Don't let bullies run you off or stop you from sharing your knowledge.
 

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May I suggest if someone doesn’t like a post instead of predictably attacking and calling people names, try making alternative suggestions and give some reason why you choose what you use. This is directed toward one person who I don’t need to name.

Personally I have used a prong and an e collar on one dog, never on the other because that is what each needed. I tried the treats and praise route with both dogs. It worked well for one but actually made the other one much much worse and I had to add bigger tools. A good trainer knows how to mix praise and rewards with aversive. That is called balanced training. My results speak for themselves. My treat trained dog has an independent streak and will leap our fence to chase a cat. My dog that was balanced trained has never escaped our yard even when following the first dog, because I give just one command and he is back at my side. He is an absolute joy at home. My other dog had the same trainer (me) but different outside trainers. She is happy and we adore her but I stress out more over her behaviors than I ever do with my other one. She steals food off the counter, she climbs, and she jumps. He stares at food on the counter but has never stolen anything.
 
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