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HELP - Very bad behavior..

3143 Views 26 Replies 12 Participants Last post by  XStealth6
Hello Guys!,

I have a problem.. a big problem.. my father has bought a pure white german shepperd.. he knows nothing about training and the sort.. so me being the right of mind.. i know these dogs are smart.. so i've taken up the time.. time i dont have mind you, to train it. I've successfully house broken the dog , taught it to sit.. be police and not bite.. etc

But.. i have a big dilemma, the father has a habit of leaving the dog unleashed..he thinks the dog listens to him.. now the dog is used to having it's freedom and sorts.. apparently when people walk by the dog launches after them and starts growling.. today the dog went after little kids getting off the bus stop.. i'm a bit worried because if the dog gets in the habit of doing this we could end up in trouble.. or worse end up being sued for a rampant dog. The dog is only 4-5 months old.. but she's big as most of you know by having the dog yourself..

The dog is pretty much either intimidated by me or atleast respects me.. everytime i tell her to do something or sit or go to her cage she fellows and puts her ears down.

Food doesn't work with her. She's not enticed by it at all. which is making training difficult. Cage punishment is something ive tried with limited success..

please help....
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I am not an expert, as a matter of fact I have my first GSD who's only 6 1/2 months now. But something I can tell you is that these dogs are almost a full time job. They need daily training, socialization, etc. Socializing w/ kids and other dogs is a must.

If your father didn't know these things or did and ignores them, he is in for trouble. Not being on a leash is an invitation for a lawsuit. Some people live on those. So if I were you, I would either keep the dog, or maybe if you don't have the time, then have the dog profesionally trained. These dogs are really smart, but they also need guidance and a leader to know who's the boss.

I am really surprised she is not enticed by food. My pup will dance in a thong for treats. LOL. But seriously, the dog needs devotion and lots of time. Please don't drop her off in a shelter just because. It's not her fault this is happening.
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Your Dad, in my opinion, is pretty much really going about this the wrong way. And if things don't change immediately the poor pup (it's always the dog that suffers) will be put down for attacking the school kids.

First, a crate isn't for punishment. Ever. Can be for a 'time out' and to get a breather. But a crate is supposed to be a safe lair for our pups.

Second, GSD's are brilliant Energizer Bunnies. So ALL problems that come up for us are because we need a 2 pronged 'attack' . To exercise and tire them out (hours and hours a day?). And to MENTALLY train and stimulate them to 'give them a job'. Cause if we don't interact and TEACH them what we want, then they will make it up with whatever seems fun or right at the time.

Additionally, the top reason dogs are put down or land in shelters is from LACK OF SOCIALIZATION. We need to put those pups in the cars and take them everywhere to meet everyone in any situation.

DOG CLASSES...... has us put the pup in the car. Spend the one on one time with them. Socialization with new people, dogs, places. And gives us the skills and abilities to work with such a brilliant breed!

Frankly, this pup isn't acting very very bad at all for the situation it is in. I wouldn't expect anything different and a bit surprised there haven't been more problems. If the pup is too much for your Dad, do you think he could contact the breeder and see if they will take the pup back? Responsible breeders would much rather get a pup back in this situation than wait for a disaster to happen and it be too late for them to help.
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first,don't use the crate for punishment.beleive me!
second,never leave a dog unleashed outside the house(unless there's a fence)

as for the food/treats,what are you using?
try hot dogs!
she will do whatever you want!
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see thats the thing.. the little things i've accomplished were done because i was the one putting in effort to train the dog. My father just bought it because it reminded him of his childhood which is a dumb reason to get a dog and not train it.

Im barely have the time. but the time i do get in the house, i put into training the dog, atleast with me the dog is respectful.. and seems me as higher in the "pack" sort to speak.. thats the only way i can understand why the dog respects me more then my father..
what can i do to train this dog to stop that? im a little afraid sometime in the future we will have to put the dog to sleep because he was poor trained...
Originally Posted By: Nosferatu_see thats the thing.. the little things i've accomplished were done because i was the one putting in effort to train the dog. My father just bought it because it reminded him of his childhood which is a dumb reason to get a dog and not train it.

Im barely have the time. but the time i do get in the house, i put into training the dog, atleast with me the dog is respectful.. and seems me as higher in the "pack" sort to speak.. thats the only way i can understand why the dog respects me more then my father..
what can i do to train this dog to stop that? im a little afraid sometime in the future we will have to put the dog to sleep because he was poor trained...
i'm sorry i don't understand what you are asking.
"what can i do to train this dog to stop that?"
to stop what?
Quote: i'm a bit worried because if the dog gets in the habit of doing this we could end up in trouble.. or worse end up being sued for a rampant dog
How about being worried some child may be hurt???

You have two or three problems on your hands.. A large puppy, unreal expectations, lack of proper control ( a fence around yard, a leash off property for control).

Cowing a dog into submission will cause even more problems.

IMHO you and your dad should enroll in puppy classes, or work with an experienced traner and learn about how to train and treat this baby.

You sound like this pup is a PITA to you. If that's the case, you might consider rehoming him with someone willing and able to work with him.
To answer your questions:

What i meant was, what steps can i take to train the dog to stop launching after people and attack/growl at random passbyers.

I'm more concern of the safety of others who may be hurt by the dogs problem of being unsocialized as some of you pointed out above.. That's what i meant by in my statement. But obviously the consequences of the actions also worry me.

I don't know what a "PITA" is. please eloborate.

Basically, im looking for some guidance.. im pitted in a situation i did not choose to be in. I have no experience in GSD. Hence, why i signed up here. Right now im looking more for advice so that i can put into motion.. then i will educate myself a little more on the GSD breed seeing as this dog is part of the family sort to speak.

Since the dog was brought home i've found myself buying it's giant inhouse kennel, dog plates, etc. My father is currently not working so he's home with the dog all day, but i need to educate myself so i can relate this information to him.. hopefully he will listen to it. otherwise i feel like i might have to find a qualified individual to train the dog with him...

I didn't buy the dog, i came home from work one day, and there she was. I had no say if the dog came to the home. I just found myself with the responsibility of training a dog that isn't mine. It's my fathers. I can't help the fact that he is ignorant. But that's not an excuse for me to let this dog suffer at the hands of someone who is ignorant and doesn't understand the benefits of a trained dog.


With food, should i start giving her some kind of scrap food? i trained her not nosy around people eating, so that she doesnt jump and cause a rawkus.. as a result i think thats why treats and home food doesn't intrest her at all..... any ideas???
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ok,first PITA means: Pain In The A--
if you don't know much about trainning and you have a problem with the dog,i would suggest to find a good trainer,if you want to keep this dog.
i also have a small problem with one of my gsd with aggression.
i found a good trainer and the first thing we did is to introduce the prong collar. major improvement. but you need to learn how to use it before you work with it.
use a leash all the time!
what are you feeding your dog?
have you tried hot dogs?or dry freeze liver treats?

don't give up,training takes time.don't hesitate to ask questions.
I have more experience with reptiles then dogs.
I would like to keep the dog, since introductions she's grown on me.
I read that the gsd breed tend to have a pack mentality.. so thats how i go about training her.. at this point , i believe she sees me leader of the pack only because im the only person in the house that she listens to as far as commands go. Sit, go to kennel, come here, "want to go bathroom?" etc.. little things i say whenever i do something with her. With my other family members... she does whatever she wants. Even my father who spends 90% of the time with, she doesn't respect as far as commands go.. atleast... but she does listen to him with other stuff.

I'm going to try hotdogs as a source of incentive... stupid question maybe.. but.. should i cook them? or frozen is fine? lol... im dog stupid.. please forgive me.
French and MRL provided great insight into your situation.

The kicker is are you or your dad able to adjust a bit. For example, inasmuch as the dog is chasing kids, it should never be off lease. On lease the dog needs to be socialized and trained to interact with other dogs and kids without being aggressive or overly friendly.

The pup is young, and proper training does take some effort, but there is nothing better then watching a young GSD develop into an excellent companion pet. Sometimes I think the pups don't know the differnce between a squirrel, deer and little kids. And if the kid runs from the dog a bite might happen.

Good luck!

Yeah.. my schedule sucks, im usually busy working.. my job is a daily hr drive back and forth and i work long evenings hours... my time is very limited... the interaction i have in the dog is very little.. but ive been able to accomplish a few good things... im going to try the food enticement training tomorrow.. see what the dog goes crazy for... i really want the dog to be social and friendly.. i would hate for the dog to suffer because of my fathers mistakes..
please let us know what's going on.
try the hot dog,let me know, no cooking,just serve it like it is,out of the package. i buy the 24 packs!!!
i would have a talk with your dad,and tell him that you are going to train that dog,and he needs to stay away! or go with the program and help you with the dog,but not his way.
Your BIGGEST problem is your Dad. [Edited by Admin] owners, like him, give dogs in general and GSD specifically a bad name.

[Edited by Admin, Edit Personal Attack]. Sure when he was a kid you could leave a dog untrained and unsupervised. We now live in the land of lawsuits and your dog is a huge suit waiting to happen. He needs to get control and be respondsible or rehome this dog. If this dog bit my kid I would take him for everything he has.
I know that I have to change my schedule (life?) radically when I add a dog to the house. Bad as having a baby.

And though you do want to be your pup's leader, it's not in an overbearing and dominant way. It's in a guiding and confident way so you pup knows you are consistant and reliable.

Dog classes!!!!! They are only once a week and give instant guidance and feedback along with practical 'homework' for the next week.


Here's some great articles you may want to read on 'aggression' as well as what a REAL leader gives to our dogs. Just scroll down the page below the 'barn fire' stuff and start opening all the articles:
Ok, I owe you apology.

Perhaps you and your Dad should take pup to obedience class together.

In the meantime, know that your pup will take quite a time to mature.

At his age, try to introduce pup to people in a positive way and only in circumstances where the pup is under control.

Like small children, puppies find trouble when bored and uncontrolled.

Make sure your pup has enough exercise and positive training. It should be fun for puppy - and you will enjoy it more if it's part of play rather than feeling like you have to be the puppy police.

Good luck.
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I’m brand new to this forum, so please understand I still am getting the “lay of the land” so to speak. However, this problem is one I am familiar with – thankfully not with my own dogs – since I have worked with dogs in many settings for many years. As you already know, GSD’s are a very smart breed and generally very willing to follow your lead and your commands. Unfortunately, this same intelligence can lead to big problems if not correctly channeled. Right now, from your description, your dog is trying hard to find its place in the family and because your Dad is unable/unwilling to take charge the dog is taking charge. I suspect the dog is better behaved with you because you take the lead. Young dogs are very much like children; they want boundaries and limitations that are clear, unchangeable and fair. In short, they want leadership. If we are not the leader the dog will become the leader and that never ends well.

Personally, I am not fond of using food as an incentive for better behavior. However – and this is important – if you do use food as an incentive it must be done correctly. NEVER feed your dog from the table unless you intend for your dog to become a mooch! Also, if your dog is behaving aggressively/assertively using food as a distraction may reinforce this negative behavior. Of-course, everyone has her/his own opinion and experience with this choice. Just keep in mind that using food or any reward must be done in the right manner in order to have good results.

Several posters suggest more exercise for your dog – wonderful and truly the best step for getting your dog to pay attention while training. A dog that does not get enough exercise will never be able to pay attention when you are trying to train. I have a 10 year old GSD and just got a 9 week old GSD. My 10 year old no longer needs hours of exercise daily, but the 9 week old dog certainly needs lots and lots of exercise. But, it has to be the right type exercise. I take the 9 week old for a short walk every morning on leash. During the walk we practice walking on leash, sitting and listening to me. Of-course, at 9 weeks she is still too young to fully understand what I want her to do, but she is learning that I am the alpha in this pack. Again, at this young age everything I do is positive, positive, positive, few corrections and those are gentle ones. In the afternoon my puppy goes out for at least a 2 hour play period intermixed with very short lessons in behavior. She also gets to play with the other dogs (the ones who tolerate puppies well). Late in the day we have another short walk and a few lessons on listening to me. She is already looking at me for direction and comes when called. I also take her just about everywhere I can since I want her to be very well socialized. My 10 YO was a therapy dog who accompanies me to work most days and has never shown an aggressive or even assertive move in her life. I really believe the secret to good dogs is within each of us and our willingness to invest time and energy into proper socialization and training. I also believe training never stops. Everything we do around our dogs should be about their behavior and strengthening our bond.
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I agree with French in that having a dog is a 24 hour event. This morning, not including the feeding, we have gone on a 45 minute walk. Just wish more people would realize this before they get the dog as it is a privilege to have these dogs but it is also much work.

If there is an agression problem, I would strongly recommend a good trainer. And a good trainer is something you would want to look around for also.

As to the hot dog part, you can cut up the raw hot dog into little pieces. You can also cut them up and microwave them for about 2 to 3 minutes.

Pat Moreno
Sammy & Halley
Hi all,

I went out and bought my dog a pack of hot dogs to start training.. some "come" commands to call her when she runs off.

I tried out the hotdogs for the first time.. she was kind of weary of them, up until the 2nd one... then she went nuts over them!!!! lol!

It's a great start.. at the least she knows she will be rewarded for good behavior.. so far i trained with her 25 mins today with a "come" call. She comes to me.. i ask her to sit.. she sits.. i reward her. I also tried to see if i could get her to stand on her hinds and touch my hand... to my surprise! she did it! and i rewarded her... she's much smarter that i had anticipated at this age... but i guess i shouldn't be too surprised.. GSD are a smart breed... anyway! the hot dog suggestion was awsome. so i thank you guys.

I plan to do this daily.. before i go to work. once she gets coming to me on command regularly, i will then turn into a praise then try something else with the food.


I don't know where your anger is coming from. We're all humans, people make bad mistakes. In this case i am trying to make the best of it by educating him as best i can. For the time being i am going to assume control or atleast the developement of the dog.


in the last 2 weeks me & my father has been taking the dog to the beach... where she goes bonkers!!! she runs around the water in and out.. and runs up the cost and back.. then dives into the ocean again.. it's quite halarious to watch.. she definately get's worn out! i will try to make this a daily or atleast a routine weekly to get her out there and run around crazy. The beach i live by is not an open beach so i dont have to worry about people.

I have noticed that her grows are pretty harmless to people who do come to her... she seems like she just wants some attention..


It's ok.. no worries.. I figured it was a misunderstanding. No problems here.

@ all

I'm going to try to take the dog , leashed of course to the beach.. to see other people or places with other people then myself.. so that she can see or atleast experience people in the real world..

is this a proper way of "socializing the dog" ???

awaiting your replies,
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Hi there. Kudo's to you for thinking of the dog. You didn't want the dog, but your dad did, and now you're willing to do some training.
For using food to train, here are some instructions to do it right. (I suggest printing up on paper and reading at your leisure)
If you do it right, your dog will not learn to beg or pester you for your dinner. I train this way, and I detest dogs that beg. Mine don't. I use chicken weiners diced small (slice them lenthwise twice, then chop into cubes). I slice a package at a time, and divvy two dogs per baggie and put them in the freezer ready to use. This will save you much time. Since you say the dogs ears go flat when you command him, he might be afraid of you. Training with treats will fix that, while increasing obedience. When the dog (can I say 'your' dog, because once you take on this task it will begin to feel that way) is having fun in training, you may find it's more fun and less of a chore yourself.
I don't train exclusively with treats, (I also use a prong collar, and reward with frisbees, and other things) but treats are a good start as the dog becomes a willing participant. Sometimes dogs do not want treats, because they are in a situation that makes them nervous or excited (think about times when stress or excitement ruined your appetite). If it's stress, you want to identify and reduce the source of the stress. Sometimes the treats just aren't very tasty to the dog. If you tried to lure me with caviar, I'd walk away and buy myself an ice-cream.
Try to get your dad to keep the dog controlled and away from the kiddies. A bite would be a disaster (and not unlikely given the scenario you describe) and your dad and dog would get the blame.
Training can be fun. Taking the dog to the beach can be more fun. And, while I don't know if you're single, I think a beautiful dog would be a great 'chick magnet' so your dog may not be the only critter getting quality socialization (sorry, couldn't resist some fun with that scenario). Yes, the beach is good socialization--leash only for now.
In all seriousness though, do remain aware, that dogs do like to chase things, and things they like to chase, they may want to bite, so be watchful when people are running. And if you are an adult, when you are in control of the dog, you will be held responsible for the dog. I hope this can turn into a positive experience for all three of you.
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