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Hey everybody...

My name is Alex and this is my first post on GSD.com, just wanted to ask a couple of quick questions and if anyone could chime in and help that would be great!

These are aimed towards my 5 month GSD "Chief"

1. Sleep - He still at 5 months barks when we put him in his pen at night. He knows that its time to go to sleep, but he doesn't want to be separated from us either. We thought we had him trained for about a month or so, but he has developed this habit recently again. He will bark and cry for about 10 min then when he figures that no one is coming, he lays down and goes to bed. He also gets hyper and cannot find a way to calm himself some nights. He cries most the night even after taking him out for bathroom breaks. Also, he goes to bed around 11.00 pm and wakes up around 5.00 am. Is this a normal length of sleep?

2. Hyper Mode - For about an hour each day (7.00 - 8.00 pm), he gets super hyper and becomes a handful. We have learned to take him outside and let him get his energy out. However, with this energy unfortunately comes play biting. When he gets in this mood, he play bits and sometimes even snaps a bit at us. Not in a vicious way (doesn't do it any other time of day), but this needs to stop regardless. Any tips? We tried ignoring him after incidents, vinegar water in a spray bottle to shoot in his mouth, saying "no" and putting him in timeout. After we correct him, he seems to act like he was beyond himself and starts licking you to apologize, but this problem is not going away.

Other than these things he is a great dog. He is good looking, smart, knows his basic commands already (still working to perfect), and lovable. Just want to get this puppy problems out of the way before its too late!

TIA!


:help::help::help::help::help::help::help::help:
 

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I agree with Whitney, he sounds like he's got too much energy and is trying to get rid of it in bad ways.

Lots of play time and short obedience sessions to work his mind should help, a tired puppy is a good puppy. Make sure he has lots of different toys of size and texture and keep one on you at all times to throw or redirect him to. See if you can find safe dogs for him to play with as well, dogs are great for wearing each other out!
 

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So today, I walked Chief a half mile, played fetch with him for an hour (running the whole time), and spend 3 hrs outside just leisure playing in the yard. Still, he cries when he is in his pen for the night and still won't go to sleep. How much do I have to tire this dog out? How long will this puppy energy last?
 

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Where is his crate? Have you tried putting it in the bedroom where you sleep?

After all that exercise how was his general demeanor aside from when you put him in the crate?

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So today, I walked Chief a half mile, played fetch with him for an hour (running the whole time), and spend 3 hrs outside just leisure playing in the yard. Still, he cries when he is in his pen for the night and still won't go to sleep. How much do I have to tire this dog out? How long will this puppy energy last?
Honestly, a lot. He is a puppy and they have ENDLESS energy. I remember Titan at that age.. holy moly, I would call my mom so upset because I didn't know what more I could do for him to tire him out. Titan stil has endless energy, but he's trained now so he knows the routine and knows he'll get his energy out at the right time. To give you an idea of what I do for Titan as an adult.. this is what our routine is..

1 mile RUN in the morning with a stop at the dog park for about 20-30 minutes of constant fetch then a mile run back to the house before meal time. He gets the run of the yard while I get ready for work. He's in the house while I am at work or if the weather is nice, out in the yard. When I get home we immediately go for another mile run, this time with an hour or so stop at the dog park with another mile run back home. When we get home he restd for a bit and then we do Obedience runs in the back yard for about 30 minutes, off and on. Then probably about 45 minutes of fetch. After dinner is quiet time.. he knows that. He gets his "smart" toys, and a chew if he wants and that's it. On the weekends we do SAR training for about 5 hours on Saturday and Sundays are run days and fun days.. he gets a lot of play time.

Now that was after getting him through the puppy stage. Until Chief is about 1 or 2 you are going to have to constantly keep him entertained. The running is a great idea but keep it short because his joints are still developing. I would do that about twice a day with play time and mental stimulation. There are toys you can get that make him use his brain to figure it out. I would do obedience multiple times a day too. You only need to do this for 5-10 minutes at a time. He's a puppy and will get bored so you don't want to make it a long boring experience. I did it during commercials when I watched TV. Or while I waited for something in the microwave.. simple things, "stay," "sit," "down," etc.

As for the crate, where is it located? Is he in the crate any other time than sleeping? What do you do when you put him in the crate? What do you do when he cries?
 

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Discussion Starter #7 (Edited)
I got a pretty big crate, but he freaks out in it. He lays straight out when he sleeps and his head/paws his the ends of the crate. This is when he freaks out. The crate is 42"(L) x 27"(W) x 30"(H). He doesn't freak out, however, when he's just sleeping in his pen.

Should I get a bigger crate? I see some with length of 50 in....?
 

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I would get a smaller crate. One that he can stand up in but not do much other than lay down.. where is it located? Is he in the crate any other time than sleeping? What do you do when you put him in the crate? What do you do when he cries?
 

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Yep, that crate might be to big for him so he doesn't feel safe in it. Luca's crate is in our bedroom. He loves going in it. When I am doing things in my room he just walks into it and lays down and I leave the gate open. PLUS I have a small fan for him. He always seems to be hot. And the small noise that comes from it is nice at night when we sleep. We don't hear him moving so much YAY!!
They are puppies, therefor loads of energy. I love to run with mine but not to far yet as he just turned 5 months today. But we walk everyday too. Play outside fetching the ball. And the best part is teaching him tricks. That always tires him out. Stick with it. Best dogs in the WORLD!!:eek:
 

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I'm currently sitting here dealing with the "hyper mode" right now. 11:30pm -_- we are all going stir crazy because of the rain here... We just can't get out!! I found that River likes to change toys, one minute she's chewing on her squeaky crocodile, then she's chasing the tennis ball (hurray finally) then she's jumping around annoying my 9 year old gsd x. Now she's playing with her kong wobbler.
Vary the toys, do some obedience and try to be patient. They can be irritating, but they are just babies and completely worth it in the long run! :hug:


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Yall think the crate is too BIG? I thought it would be too small? The only time he starts to freak out is when he lays out and hits the ends of the crate.
 

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Alex, GSD are people's dogs. They want to constantly be with their people. When you put him to sleep he may still be in a high gear, yet you suddenly disappear and perhaps he can't see you. He may still be in an excited mode. What you describe whats happening between 7:00-8:00pm, is called "zoomies". Make a search on this word.
As others suggested, try placing his crate in, or closer to your bedroom, in a way he can see and hear you. A smaller crate (not to the point of making him uncomfortable) gives him a safe feeling and it prevents accidents. People use that for housebreaking their dogs.
Other then that, everything sounds normal. During his first 2 years a puppy goes through intense changes and you should be aware of that.
 

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Yeah I would very much encourage have the crate in a room where you are. When I got my girl, her kennel was going to stay downstairs so I actually slept on the couch the first few weeks until she understood I was there.

I still am wondering what your response is when he cries in he crate?
 

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put him in his crate for 5 to 10 minutes throughout the day.
do this several times throughout the day. you could start
making going to the crate fun. teach him to go his crate
on command.

train and socialize in short periods throughout the day. if the
zoomies start at 7:00 pm exercise before 7:00 pm.
 

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You could always have 2 crates too. I know I had one in the bedroom and one in the living room where we were most visible.

I agree with doggiedad.. that was how we did it with my girl when she was a puppy because she didn't like her crate either.
 

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For me the only way Tank would sleep in her crate properly was if it was RIGHT beside me. AKA her whining got both of us kicked outta the bedroom by the hubby who gets up for work at 4am...BUT a couple nights of me sleeping on the couch and her in the crate literally beside me she settled just fine. Then she would sleep in the crate in the bedroom. Now though she just sleeps in the bed, she's a trustworthy lil 17 week old doesn't get up and destroy anything in the night. Just fights me for the pillow. Good luck it's all a process and 10 years down the road you will be wishing for this energy!
 

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Thanks for the help guys/gals! I will try these things out on Chief!

I still am wondering what your response is when he cries in he crate?
If he starts crying to be let out/attention, I do not answer. If he randomly cries throughout the night, then I let him out and he goes potty. After that, he goes straight back to sleep. It's not he's still testing us to see if we will come. It's not long, only for 10 min or so, but I would think he would learn by now...
 

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I'm with everyone else, crate or pen him in your bedroom at night. He will then be with his pack so that should calm/quiet him. And you can also give a quick verbal (and a TIMELY verbal) correction to quiet him at the first sign of his getting verbal.

Our pups need to be both mentally AND physically worn out. So taking them to NEW places and meeting NEW people (super easy once you have signed up and are attending puppy classes) help alot.

How many tricks has he learned so far? click this --> http://www.germanshepherds.com/forum/general-puppy-stuff/187976-teaching-trick-least-important-part-teaching-tricks.html

:)
 
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