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Discussion Starter #1
So, I have a 1 year old gsd named Rokko, that looks like he has low self esteem around other dogs. I can't take him anywhere anymore because he barks, cries, and nips at other dogs. If a dog runs up to him to play he, stares them down, then he cries really loud while he trys deperately to hide behind me, and last if the other dog still apporaches he will snap at them. He doesn't use he teeth just scares their owner's and gets us kicked out.:(

I was wondering if this is common behavior for gsd's? I've been thinking about getting him a muzzle so I can socialize him, but does anyone know if they work for gsd's? And what kind are best?
 

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No it is not common, but sadly many GSD's are fear aggressive.

I would not muzzle him but keep him in situations where loose dogs don't run up to him. Stay out of dog parks for now!!
Get him into a structured training group so he can be desensitized to other dogs and gain confidence while around them.
Muzzle will only make him feel more vulnerable, and won't help his psyche at all.
A wire basket muzzle is the only one I'd recommend, the mesh ones don't allow the dog to pant and they can overheat if left on for extended periods. A muzzle should be introduced slowly to the dog, so it won't associate being muzzled with anything negative(vet visit, company coming over, etc)
 

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Poor baby... Please stop this type of 'socializing', it doesn't do your dog any good but just the opposite. Start from communicating to your dog that he can relax because you will take care of any situation, including loose dogs harassing him. You need to develop your dog's trust in your ability to lead and protect your dog anytime, anywhere.

Imagine that you are not comfortable around, well, I don't know, used car dealers. You do not like them to approach you, you do not want them to talk to you, you want to go home but your dad keeps dragging you to that place for some unknown to you reason. Would duct taping your hands and your mouth and pushing in the middle of that crowd day after day put you in ease and make your experience more pleasurable?
 

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Step up and be this dog's leader, his advocate, his protector.

If he is truly fearful you have your work cut out for you. You can hep him by letting him gain confidence not overwhelming him. He can gain confidence by being exposed to the things he is afraid of (other dogs) from a distance and rewarded for calm and accepting behavior, then move him a little closer and repeat ver slowly over time. He may never be comfortable around other dogs but he can learn to tolerate them if he trusts that you will keep him safe.

Stay away from the dog park and consider walking in areas where you are not likely to meet off leash dogs for awhile.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
thanks everyone, I'm going to take everyone's advise and not get him a muzzle anymore. I was only considering all possible solutions, but I'm gonna work really hard on leading him, and him trusting me.
 
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