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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
When we first got her, she was 18 months old (she's 3.5 now) and warmed right up to us. She's never been too protective of us though, although she was more so when we first got her.

It's like she's never met a stranger when it comes to humans. But she's aggressive towards cats, rabbits, squirrels, and to most dogs too. I don't like her being so trusting towards humans. How can I get her to not trust others, yet not go overboard with it?
 

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Short of cruelty, you really can't. It's your job to protect her anyway.

If push ever comes to shove and you're really in danger (God forbid) she may just surprise you though.

Be glad you have such a happy, friendly dog! It's much better to have a dog that's a little too trusting than one that can't be around children and bites Grandma when she tries to hug you.
 

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i agree with Emoore. its good she's so friendly and i also agree if she feels you are in danger her protective instincts will kick in
 
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I am on agreeement. You should not teach a dog to be aggressive or less trusting towards human beings and that is a shepherd that is I would never want to own, it is unbalanced and dangerous. GSDs can be reserved with strangers, but that is not the same thing.

Schutzhund (protection) is also not a "lack of trust". Training protection and a lack of trust of humans are not the same thing

GSDs takes their cue from you on how to react to people. They watch you. If your friend comes over and they see you trust, they trust. They see someone hitting you or yelling? They dont trust.

My last GSD was love muffin, but you would be surprised. When push comes to shove, they will protect you.
 
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JINXR - When I was just a teenager I had a female GSD that was everyone's friend. She never met a stranger. We even took her on camping trips with us and she never so much as 'woofed' at a stranger. She loved everyone.

On two seperate occasions she attacked and saved my life. Once while I was jumped in a swimming pool by a stranger, she jumped in and bit him in the face. The second time she bit a friend of the family who attacked me and meant me harm. Before, and afterwards she was still the same, sweet, loving dog.

Please have more faith in your dog. She'll know when to kick it into high gear. You show her leadership and love and you'll have a loyal, loving companion for the rest of her years.
 
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JINXR - When I was just a teenager I had a female GSD that was everyone's friend. She never met a stranger. We even took her on camping trips with us and she never so much as 'woofed' at a stranger. She loved everyone.

On two seperate occasions she attacked and saved my life. Once while I was jumped in a swimming pool by a stranger, she jumped in and bit him in the face. The second time she bit a friend of the family who attacked me and meant me harm. Before, and afterwards she was still the same, sweet, loving dog.

Please have more faith in your dog. She'll know when to kick it into high gear. You show her leadership and love and you'll have a loyal, loving companion for the rest of her years.
Here Here. I could not have said it better.
 

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A few years ago, my in-laws had been over for dinner, and it was the typical visit...my mother-in-law would say something rude/hurtful, I would bite my tounge, and my wife would offer a sympathetic look. This cycle would repeat itself several times throughout any evening I had to be in her presence, and that particular night was especially brutal. After they had left, my wife and I were cleaning up when I noticed my mother-in-law had forgotten her sweater on the back of a kitchen chair.

I carefully picked-up the sweater, folded it very neatly, and placed it in my dog training gear bag. My wife stepped over toward the laundry room and asked me, "what in the world are you doing with my mother's sweater???"

I calmly replied in a soft voice, "dog training". My wife asked, "what kind of training are you doing now?". "I need the scent on the sweater", I replied. "Tracking?", she asked, to which I said, "no, but scent work".

"What kind of scent work are you training the dog on with my mother's sweater?" she asked in a demanding tone. "Well, I take the sweater with your mother's scent on it and wrap it around a ball bat, and then I comence to beating the **** out of the dog with it! The next time your mother is here, and the dog gets her scent, she will react with the desired level of aggression."

That is a true story, and an example of my sick sense of humor, but not how anyone would really train a GSD!!!!:D

JINXR, A GSD should be naturally alloof, and protective with solid nerve. Training simply builds on that.....if you're dog doesn't have it, I wouldn't force it.
 

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I'm with everyone else, friendly is WAY better than not.

Fact is, it's 'training' that makes a protection type dog and generally they are trained to look to YOU and obey YOU to get their cues on how to behave. They aren't just supposed to be randomly making decision on who to bite or not cause they aren't the best natural judges of character. And hate to have them bite my visiting aunt cause they didn't know her so 'decided' she deserved to have blood drawn.

So the look of a GSD is way more than enough for a general deterrence, and that way my aunt can feel safe when she comes to visit (and I don't end up with problems getting homeowners insurance).
 

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I've accidentally turned Jax into a barking machine. When he was a little puppy he would bark at his dog friends as we were entering the park and that's when I unclipped his leash. He has associated barking at where he wants to go with me letting him off the leash. He now barks at everyone he wants to meet (which is everyone). I don't mind since it scares the crap out of strangers and people that know us are ok. He'd never bite because it's his "friendly bark" but I don't mind that strangers stay away from him :)
As everyone was saying, if in danger, your dog will surprise you. My boxer never had a mean bone in her body and one night I took her out after coming home at around 3am and some guy was following us into the park. I noticed he was coming closer and was looking for a place to get away when the boxer turned around and barked and growled like I didn't even know she could do! (she was 4 at the time). The next morning we heard a girl in the same park was pulled into the bushes.
 

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You'd be surprised. My Balto looks like a fluffy muppet. He will slurp on anybody that pets him and he breaks up fights at the dog park. But when I took him to be temperament tested, I thought he was going to kill the tester that came after him with a stick. Of course, that's what the Laekenois was breed for, to be a guardian and a general working dog. Much like the GSD.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I guess I should clarify. It's not that I want her to be aggressive towards people. My issue is that she doesn't "defend" her turf unless it's another animal. Someone could walk into the fenced backyard and she wouldn't have a problem with it.

I enjoy her being sweet towards others when I'm around. I just don't like it that she's so comfortable with letting strangers or anyone into our backyard, especially when I'm not around.
 

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Riley is all bark. But he is also a very large black dog.

Shelby is american showlines black and tan.... and a total chicken. no barking, no growling, nothing.... unless another dog gets too close to her when she has a bone.

Shasta is 6 months old. I dont expect anything from her right now.

Zena.... she'll rip an arm and/or a leg off if someone comes around that hasnt been invited by myself or my husband. She's a very sweet and friendly dog but also very protective.

it depends on the dog. But they also can surprise the heck out of you too.
 
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