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Discussion Starter #1
Hi There!

I was after a theoretical answer to a hypothetical question, about dog behaviour. There have been a lot of attacks lately in my area and it got me wondering what my boy Thunder would do if I was attacked.

Say Thunder and I were out walking and a few dogs in a pack were to attack us (would this happen in the first place, if Thunder was with me?),
would Thunder likely defend me, or join in? Would it make a difference if I was to fall in the attack onto the ground?

This may not be possible to catagorically answer, and I certainly don't want to start a war here, but I was just curious?

I would imagine Thunder would defend me to the death, well I would like to think it, but I wonder about the pack mentality.

The reason I asked was that one of the attacks was a little 5 year old who was playing with 2 pitbulls (unfortunately unattended). None of the dogs were hers but they were well known to her. She "apparently" fell over, and the dogs took this as some sort of signal, and attacked her together. Not that my son would be left unattended with dogs, even our own who I trust with MY life, but IF another dog came over to play and Alex was with them, and one dog attacked him, I wondered if Thunder would defend or join in.

Have I rambled enough to make this completetly unclear ?
 

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I would like to believe that YOUR dog would not attack YOU. Just because you know a dog doesn't mean you are in its pack. Many Shepherds have been known to defend/protect/watch over the family and especially children. While there will be some that will not follow this rule. If your GSD is raised in your pack(family), then it is their pack too. If thy belong to this pack their whole live (or a long time), then that bond would be more strongly formed than any other pack that forms randomly among dogs.

Many GSDs take on jobs, and while some of us may not recognize it at first, they will give themselves jobs even if we don't. i haev heard of countless stories of dogs that stopped kids from walking into the street, attacked a dog coming aggressively towards a child.

THIS is one of the main reasons I fell in love with this breed. They are watchful protectors.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thunder has been with us since 9 weeks of age. Our Son is 6 months old and Thunder mostly stays away, I think because he is still quite clumsy and we worry about him accidentally hurting Alex. He just isn't aware how big he is, and in his enthusiam the potential is there.

Usually Thunder will come in if Alex is on the floor and give him a sniff, we say "gentle thunder" so he knows to be slow and cautious, but Thunder doesn't show much interest in Alex yet. I am not sure if we are creating a link issue by being over protective of our son... What do you think?
 

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in many cases, i think a dog's instinct for self preservation and reaction to fear are mistaken for protective behavior of adjacent humans.
 

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I was out walking Shadow one day...a dog jumped it's fence and came aggressively charging at me. Shadow put herself between me and that dog and never made a sound, her posture was all it took to get teh other dog to freeze in its tracks. I hollared until the owner came out of their house to retrieve the dog. On another ocassion I was walking Shadow and Mille (RIP) and pushing the baby stroller. I was headed to the park when a HUUUUGE pittie that was chained out lunged and broke its chain and came barrelling towards us, hackles up, tail held high, and looking none to happy. He circled us and my girls circled as well, keeping themselves between me and the baby and that dog. Luckily the pitties owners were outside and they were able to call the dog home before any fighting could break out. I vowed never to take both dogs and the stroller again by myself as if a fight would have insued there would be no way for me to control both of mine, get the other one off, AND take care of the baby.
 

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Originally Posted By: roxy84in many cases, i think a dog's instinct for self preservation and reaction to fear are mistaken for protective behavior of adjacent humans.
Totally agree.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Is there a way to test your dog's likelyhood to protect you before it actually comes to relying on it?
 

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I have countles stories of Paige protecting and it wasn't to protect herself. Once a babysitter pretended to punch my daughter and Paige pinned her up against the wall until I called her off.
Another time a friend of mine sprayed my daughter with a hose as a joke and Paige grabbed the hose from her hand, dropped it and barked a very obvious "don't do it again!"
Another time I had Paige in the car and my dog Jazmin was in my friend's yard. My friend stepped on Jazmin by mistake. She yelped and Paige jumped thru the car window and over a five foot fence to get her sister. She checked Jazmin out walked over to my friend who was saying"I'm sorry Paige I'm sorry" and roared at her.
Another time a loose Pit came charging at me and Paige busted thru the screen to save me-and did. She scared the heck out of that dog.
so yes my GSD will save me or my kid or my other dogs anyday.
 

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I will NEVER be attacked by an aggressive dog
NO one carrying a gun will get anywhere near me
Is this good-??did I train for this NO
 

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correction accepted-but just to say anyone carrying within smelling area where I am with my dog he will react.NOT trained by me but came hardwired in my rescue dog.
 

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Originally Posted By: SuzyEI have countles stories of Paige protecting and it wasn't to protect herself. Once a babysitter pretended to punch my daughter and Paige pinned her up against the wall until I called her off.
Another time a friend of mine sprayed my daughter with a hose as a joke and Paige grabbed the hose from her hand, dropped it and barked a very obvious "don't do it again!"
Another time I had Paige in the car and my dog Jazmin was in my friend's yard. My friend stepped on Jazmin by mistake. She yelped and Paige jumped thru the car window and over a five foot fence to get her sister. She checked Jazmin out walked over to my friend who was saying"I'm sorry Paige I'm sorry" and roared at her.
Another time a loose Pit came charging at me and Paige busted thru the screen to save me-and did. She scared the heck out of that dog.
so yes my GSD will save me or my kid or my other dogs anyday.
I'd put her on some serious NILIF. She seems all over the place
 

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Originally Posted By: ttalldogcorrection accepted-but just to say anyone carrying within smelling area where I am with my dog he will react.NOT trained by me but came hardwired in my rescue dog.
wait ...I am not getting it. Your dog sniffs guns? ...like black powder?
 

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Originally Posted By: gsdlove212I was out walking Shadow one day...a dog jumped it's fence and came aggressively charging at me. Shadow put herself between me and that dog and never made a sound, her posture was all it took to get teh other dog to freeze in its tracks. I hollared until the owner came out of their house to retrieve the dog. On another ocassion I was walking Shadow and Mille (RIP) and pushing the baby stroller. I was headed to the park when a HUUUUGE pittie that was chained out lunged and broke its chain and came barrelling towards us, hackles up, tail held high, and looking none to happy. He circled us and my girls circled as well, keeping themselves between me and the baby and that dog. Luckily the pitties owners were outside and they were able to call the dog home before any fighting could break out. I vowed never to take both dogs and the stroller again by myself as if a fight would have insued there would be no way for me to control both of mine, get the other one off, AND take care of the baby.
I am wondering at what point you let go off the leashes and why?
It was a 3 against 1 situation.
 

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lol, Paige is 11 and she has been NILFed enough. Yeah I would rather be attacked by a pitbull then fix my screen. NOT!
 

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I think it's our responsibility to protect our dog when out for walks, not the other way around. Otherwise, your dog is never going to trust you, always knowing it will have to defend for himself/herself.

If you are waiting for your dog to "save" you from a "vicious" pit bull or person with a gun, then you are being extremely foolish. Snap out of your fantasy world, and be realistic.

If your dog is supposedly engaging in "protective" activities, for which it isn't even trained, it is more likely highly reactive and fear aggressive. As stated above, "in many cases, i think a dog's instinct for self preservation and reaction to fear are mistaken for protective behavior of adjacent humans."

It's time to be your dog's leader.
 

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Originally Posted By: Buoyant DogI think it's our responsibility to protect our dog when out for walks, not the other way around. Otherwise, your dog is never going to trust you, always knowing it will have to defend for himself/herself.

If you are waiting for your dog to "save" you from a "vicious" pit bull or person with a gun, then you are being extremely foolish. Snap out of your fantasy world, and be realistic.

If your dog is supposedly engaging in "protective" activities, for which it isn't even trained, it is more likely highly reactive and fear aggressive. As stated above, "in many cases, i think a dog's instinct for self preservation and reaction to fear are mistaken for protective behavior of adjacent humans."

It's time to be your dog's leader.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Wow so sometimes the timing of things is kind of scary. Today my wife went running with Thunder and out of the blue a pitbull cross comes flying out of a drive way and has at Thunder. Knocked him over, knocked my wife sideways and has Thunder around the neck with it's teeth. Luckily it's owner came out and helped my wife, but now my wife doesn't want to go running with Thunder any more (One of the main reasons I got Thunder was to protect her when she went running on her own).

The owner was apologetic apparently and Thunder wasn't hurt and doesn't appear to have suffered long term emotional harm, but my wife is understandably quite nervous.

Not sure whether to lay a complaint against the owners or not.
 
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