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Need help with a situation here.

My almost 11-month GSD is having trouble with his electric fence and the neighbors WILL NOT stop complaining.

He has a PetSafe electric collar and my family's other 2 dogs have one too, someone is usually outside with him when he's out there yet when neighbors walk by, he always barks like a mad man and tries to run to them. Our yard is not very big so the neighbors freak out and think he is going to come after them. They scream and yell and the dog only barks louder. I try and get his attention but he will just keep barking and running towards them. The collar beeps and beeps and you can tell he is getting shocked yet he continues to bark and lunge.

What can I do to stop this? His collar is tight, it works, just replaced the battery and increased the level. We put flags out 5-6 feet before the sidewalk so he knows thats where he should stop but he still barks and lunges.

Neighbors of course don't understand that he's an innocent baby and just wants to play.

How can I stop this? Cannot stand to hear people's negatives comments about him anymore.

I take him on regular walks and he's very active and is great on a leash, yet sometimes I want to allow him to roam free in the yard and play with the other dogs. He can't do this with all the neighbor complaints.
 

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Have you ever considered a real fence? It might stop future problems, and give you and your neighbor piece of mind.
 

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You have to do additional training with the dog :)

You need some commands like, first of all, a solid come, quiet, look at me, in the house, and kennel up!

Have you been to OB classes, or are you working with a trainer? What have you tried thus far to change the behavior?

I have reactive rescue dogs, and training helps a whole, whole lot!


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when my dog was young i made sure my neighbors pet him.
lots of times i would call my neighbors and ask them to
come to the backyard and pet my pup. sometimes they
would stand in their yards and reach over the fence, put there
fingers through the fence and pet him and treat him. i also
had a lot of people visit with their dogs. the dogs would play in
the yard and in the house.
 

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when my dog was young i made sure my neighbors pet him.
lots of times i would call my neighbors and ask them to
come to the backyard and pet my pup. sometimes they
would stand in their yards and reach over the fence, put there
fingers through the fence and pet him and treat him. i also
had a lot of people visit with their dogs. the dogs would play in
the yard and in the house.
Ditto. Having the neighbors meet and treat the dogs goes a loooong way :)

It helps, but still mostly for people they know. Strangers remain a different story...

Though, I have found it does make strangers a little less strange ;). Every person they befriend makes them exponentially more confident and relaxed overall.


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I did exactly with Jonas as doggiedad is saying. My neighbors used to be scared to death of Taz for many years, all he wanted to do was play with them, but they did not know this. When he passed the neighbor told me how much afraid they were of him, so this time I made them meet Jonas and become friends with him. everything is hunky dory now :)
 

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dog only barks louder. I try and get his attention but he will just keep barking and running towards them. The collar beeps and beeps and you can tell he is getting shocked yet he continues to bark and lunge.

Sorry this doesn't sound like an innocent puppy that just wants to play.. You need a real fence, before he breaks through and while "playing" with the neighbors that are walking by gives a serious bite to them or their dogs. Electric fences are not fool proof, many many dogs gets to used to the shock, they will eventually run through the fence and go after whatever has made them charge the fence in the first place. I hate electric fences, have had dogs charge my dog, on leash, walking by an electric fence, while the owners stand there hollaring at their dog that is now running uncontrolled.
 

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Im sorry that does not sound like some "innocent puppy".

I do not like electric fences, I actually have a thread about this as I was thinking of installing one but never did, just waiting for a few of my friends to become available for a day to help get my fenced going as I have already bought all the boards and posts just needs to be "installed".

Two rottweilers broke through their invisible fence here a few months back and attacked a couple walking their little lap dogs, the one had serious injuries the other also sustained injuries. I also have stopped walking one of the routes I would walk with Penny because two people on the same street have very reactive dogs that are only kept on the property by in electric/invisible fence. The one house has a golden lab and a golden retriever the retriever is more aggressive/reactive than the lab but both have charged us causing Penny to get so scared she peed all over the place and nearly gave me a heart attack because I did not see them outside when they charged from the backyard, the retriever was clearly stepping over the boundary and was getting shocked and has his front paws on the sidewalk a few times. The other dog a few houses down is some type of cross of a lab very big and is also reactive and had the same issue just not as bad.

I do not trust these and people who let their dogs charge the fence like that are irresponsible, sorry, but they are. These fences should only be used to keep a dog from wondering off not to hold back an aggressive or reactive dog, if the dog is fine and rarely tries to leave the property but needs a little reminder every now and then this would be a good tool, but not for your dog is sounds like. A dog could easily take the hit and charge right through it and then it will be their fault and would be accountable for any damages and could be sued!

Please keep your dog on a leash, your dog is sounding reactive and anything could send him over this threshold and he could go barreling past the fence. Start doing training to get a solid recall and leave it commands. And also work on training to not be reactive at the "fence line" keep him on leash and treat/reward him when he ignores whoever or whatever is passing, if not you could end up with a tragedy on your hands.
 

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Sounds like your dog is not trained to the fence, so should not be let loose.
 

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Your dog needs solid obedience skills to fall back on. It isn't enough to just stop the behavior we don't want. We also need to fill in the gap with the behavior we do want. So instead of just relying on the collar to stop the "bad" behavior (the running at people, etc.), put some obedience training on the dog and give him the ability to fill in the gap with "good" behavior. Have a solid recall. A solid sit, stay. Then, before the dog even alerts to people outside his area, recall him. Have him sit. Have him heel at your side. Teach him the "Watch me" command.

The bottom line is that this dog should not be out in the unfenced yard alone, without his people. He should be on a long line at all times. It does not sound like he is the kind of dog that is contained safely by and e-fence, so a real fence should be put in if at all possible. Doing so might save this dog's life. It doesn't do any good to point at the other dogs in the family and want him to be like them. He isn't, and may never be. Work with the dog you have in front of you, not the dog you think you should have.

Get into training, and supervise at all times. Never out unless he is on a long line that is attached to an adult person.

Good luck.
Sheilah
 

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From my experience it can be very scary to be charged by any dog restrained by an invisible fence. It has happened to me numerous times in my neighborhood and even though I am a dog lover and generally unafraid of dogs I do get very nervous when I am the pedestrian in the situation you described. I think you need to keep your dog tethered or get a solid fence. I think introducing the dog to your nrighbors is a great idea as well, but don't be surprised if the are too afraid to meet your dog. If they are not dog lovers they very well may want to keep their distance until your dog is trained better.
 

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Once the dog's drive to chase and bark is engaged, a shock can actually make it worse not better and ramp him up. Many dogs run though those underground fences if the temperament is so.

The fact that he ignores you indicates you have a training problem going on. Freedom is an earned thing, not a right and he is act an age for testing the waters. At 11 months he is not an innocent baby anymore. Put him on a long line at all times outside and TEACH him the appropriate response to your neighbors! I won't have one of those fences. I don't trust them and had a neighbors dog regularly bust through the fence. They finally got rid of the dog because it got worse and worse and worse and they did not put in the time to train the dog!

I also think a solid fence is appropriate but that training is still necessary. Right now, Beau, who is not yet 2, is barking at the next door neighbor when she comes out of her back door. He has fully learned who to bark and and who not to so she has agreed to meet him a few times so that he won't bark at HER. His barking is just alarm barking with no charging, pretty much bark bark bark, mom? (looks at me) - "ok quiet" - and he stops. I plan to do this even though he has a double fence and is not an aggressive dog. I have trained him to accept certain ocassional friends that way as well. They are very good at learning who is ok and who is not. My fence is also where people walking by are not in his face all the time either and is a privacy fence.
 

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My neighbors on one side are not dog people and do not want to come pet my dogs, nor do I believe they should have to in order for my dog to be under control and accept that my neighbors belong there. It's certainly not a bad idea for your dogs to meet your neighbors but if your neighbors hate dogs, that's their prerogative.

I personally do not trust *any* dog behind an e-fence and have been charged by dogs supposedly in their fences. When I'm walking my dogs, I treat a dog behind an e-fence the same as a loose dog: I am prepared if the dog will charge.

I think most dogs need a physical barrier, both to contain them and stop the barking and lunging. For example if someone walks up to my gate, my dogs will bark, but if people or dogs are walking directly on the other side of the wooden fence, they ignore them. Sometimes you need to create a visual barrier in order to address the behavior problem. Your dog is way over his threshold right now and it won't work to keep correcting him (yourself or with the e-fence), you need to find a way to work with him *below* the threshold of him reacting which probably means working behind a visual barrier.
 

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Please be careful. I know of several cases where dogs have blown through an electric fence and bitten whatever was on the other side because they associate the shock with the person, dog, child who is on the other side.

I would switch to a solid fence and also work on training your dog.
 
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