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My GSD growls when laying down and I am petting him. What is up? Any advise besides leave a sleeping dog lie.
 

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Yeah, he’s telling you he doesn’t like it...if it is a growl and not a purr. Some dogs are more vocal.

With that being said, I don’t know what I’d do if my dog growled at me while petting it. I’ve owned and lived with several breeds through the years (GSD, Rotties, Pitts, Chows, etc.) and that has never happened to me.

I don’t think my dogs ever thought they could growl at me. It just wasn’t an option. lolol
 

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Russ growls at me when I brush his tail or do his nails. He and I both know he’s not going to bite me. He’s just griping about it.
 

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Thanks all the comments. My 1st GSD never growled at me on any circumstance. We got him at 13 weeks. Strange that this one is. We got him when he was only 6 weeks old. I am thinking he missed pack socialization as a factor.
 

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Just me but I would have corrected it as not acceptable behavior the first time it happened. Sometimes they don't like to be pet or bothered when they're sleeping for instance but growling back? Never.

There were weeks upon weeks when I used to pet my 4-6 month old occasionally, trying to keep him awake and not sleep too early so as not to be fully awake too early in the morning. They might moan or sigh. Growl? Never.
 

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Is this growling happening every time you pet him when he's laying down? Did the behavior just start recently, or has he always done it?
 

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Just me but I would have corrected it as not acceptable behavior the first time it happened. Sometimes they don't like to be pet or bothered when they're sleeping for instance but growling back? Never.

There were weeks upon weeks when I used to pet my 4-6 month old occasionally, trying to keep him awake and not sleep too early so as not to be fully awake too early in the morning. They might moan or sigh. Growl? Never.
Just curious, how would you correct the dog?
 

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I know you didn't ask me, but I wouldn't correct a dog in this circumstance. You might get him to stop the behavior, but the underlying issue would remain and maybe be exacerbated. My dogs have never had to fear that I would take anything from them, and as a result they've always let me do so. But some dogs are more possessive than others.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I have corrected him each time and not give affection as it would promote the behavior. More recently, when family members hug, he is growling.
 

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My GSD would growl and look back at me at 12 years of age when I was brushing him, he was having problems and did not want his hips touched as much and we'd work around it A 2.5 year GSD to do this is unacceptable to his number one person let alone to the family, first question I have is he physically okay... no head/neck problems? From what I'm gathering this has just started, so I'm wondering if an injury you're not aware of? Dogs growl when warning or in pain....
 
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