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Discussion Starter #1
Ok as some of you may know I have had constant issues with my GSD pup. So I had a behaviorist come and give an assessment on my pup because she bit me while eating. Also some of you may know Ive had issues with her while outside attacking me and sometimes while I am sitting down in the home (but thats not very often and has really only been outside). She told me to hold her down on her side until she was completely calm and then let her back up, and even when I do this (which it takes Penny like 30+ minuets to calm down enough to let her up) she gets back up and goes right back after me but of course she is then really angry and is even more intense.

So I called the behaviorist and told her what was happening and I also called my trainer (who Ive told her about this several times and all she tells me to do is to "knee" her which has not helped at all again only makes Penny come after me even more with more intensity) Both trainer/behaviorist suggested I send Penny away to be "trained" and of course they both suggested that I go to them.

I really dont think this is going to solve the issue? I mean Penny does not do this to anyone else, no one in my family or strangers just me! So how would sending her away help her? Or me? Sure she will be "trained" but without me training her and without me actually doing the "training" how is she going to stop this behavior towards me? Am I making sense?

I am no longer "messing" with Penny's food and just leaving her be in her crate to eat, after only a few meals she has now started to sit and to stay and wait to be release to eat (this mornings meal she saw me preparing her food and she sat and I told her to stay I put the bowl down she looked at me and I released her to eat and she went to eat, So I think over time her food possession will get better, and again I will remind that I can tell her to drop or leave stuff and I can come and take it be it a raw bone or a chew like a bully stick or a toy whatever and she doesnt have any possession there just she really LOVES her meals. And this behavior only really started, but the whole attacking me thing has been happening since she was a pup, of course I went through the whole landshark phase but this is something different...

Should I send her away like these "trainers" are saying ( I will also mention that her regular OB trainer is a certified "Master Trainer") or should I speak to another trainer and get a THIRD opinion? Even though Ive tried many different ways to stop this behavior?

Can anyone suggest what I can do to help? I will try to get a video of her doing this (will be kind of hard but I will try) so you can see exactly what she is doing.
 

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Discussion Starter #2
And I know Im probably getting very annoying with all my posts with problem after problem :( I feel like I am totally failing and its not a good feeling!
 

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Is it only with food items? or all the time? Abbi was that way with food/raw hide. We stopped giving her raw hide for that reason and I just didn't mess with her food. If that seems to be the only time Penny gets aggressive then subtract the items shes possessive over and let her food be. Hope all goes well moving forward and don't give up on her
 

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Aside from the resource guarding (food aggression), how do you mean 'attacking'? Our girl was a little landshark until 6 months or so, then slowly got better from there until she grew out of it.

I'd really advise against the alpha rolling, especially with a puppy that young. It will more than likely do more harm than good. The first thing I'd do is make sure I have a toy with or near me at all times, and when she starts getting mouthy put the toy in her mouth to redirect and initiate play.

It would definitely be helpful to see a video, because it is kind of unusual for a 5 month old pup to be aggressive to the point of attacking, especially directing aggression like that towards a pack member/leader.
 

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And I know Im probably getting very annoying with all my posts with problem after problem :( I feel like I am totally failing and its not a good feeling!
You're not being annoying. You just want what's best for your pup and need help. I personally think that you have a hard pup and I don't know what kind of advice you are getting from your trainer/behaviourist but personally I think it has not been good advice. To lay a pup on it's side and force it down until calm and kneeing pup I think is making things worse.

I feel that it is making Penny loose respect for you as a leader. You said that after you stopped messing with Penny's food she is getting better. I think you need to take a different approach with your pup to gain her respect for you again. I am by no means a trainer, but I think it's time to take a different approach and find another trainer.

I hope things get better for you, I know you love Penny and only want what's best for her.
 

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I hope others chime in but I disagree with the behaviourist's suggestions of holding her down and "kneeing" her. Totally. She is young. I would keep a toy small enough to fit in your jacket pocket, on you or several spread out in every room so you can grab one at any time and when she starts "going after you", make her sit, down, then get the toy, and engage. Your rules, and stop after 5 minutes or so.

You don't say what kind of exercise she's getting (or forgive me if you have and I've missed it) but she needs some mental at the same time as the physical. I found off leash hiking in the mountains was the best for my dog. The sniffing as well as the technical part of trail elevation gain wore him out and he simply didn't have the energy really to be a rambunctious pup like that. He was a landshark for a long time, and this is how I survived it. Also, walks of a couple miles aren't much physical effort for a pup, but if you use them for intermittent obedience, and allow them to sniff when you say ok, it is mental stimulating too. Not just one walk a day. I would often do both. Now my dog is almost two, and he is a dream. On when I want, able to run 7-10 miles at a shot and backpack and hike the same, but off when I don't want to "do" anything. He is perfect in the house, and can go days without any exercise except a bit of ball/tug in the backyard.

Also, if you haven't already, raw, beef knuckle bones from the freezer are great outlet for the need to chew. I spread an old sheet down, and monitor the dog and that will buy you some much need relief also. Make her do a bit of obedience first, too.

Hang in there.

What did they say about the "attacking"? Did the behaviorist see it in action?
 

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Your trainer and behaviorist are not helping you; they are old school. As you know it has been counter productive. By the way, everyone can call themselves a trainer or behaviorist.
Go to this website: Association of Pet Dog Trainers - Dog Training Resources and go to "trainer search" for a better trainer in your area. You need a trainer that teaches your pup, not punishes the little land shark. Interview them and go watch them work without taking your pup with you.
Please keep asking questions you may have. The forum can help you.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I hope others chime in but I disagree with the behaviourist's suggestions of holding her down and "kneeing" her. Totally. She is young. I would keep a toy small enough to fit in your jacket pocket, on you or several spread out in every room so you can grab one at any time and when she starts "going after you", make her sit, down, then get the toy, and engage. Your rules, and stop after 5 minutes or so.

You don't say what kind of exercise she's getting (or forgive me if you have and I've missed it) but she needs some mental at the same time as the physical. I found off leash hiking in the mountains was the best for my dog. The sniffing as well as the technical part of trail elevation gain wore him out and he simply didn't have the energy really to be a rambunctious pup like that. He was a landshark for a long time, and this is how I survived it. Also, walks of a couple miles aren't much physical effort for a pup, but if you use them for intermittent obedience, and allow them to sniff when you say ok, it is mental stimulating too. Not just one walk a day. I would often do both. Now my dog is almost two, and he is a dream. On when I want, able to run 7-10 miles at a shot and backpack and hike the same, but off when I don't want to "do" anything. He is perfect in the house, and can go days without any exercise except a bit of ball/tug in the backyard.

Also, if you haven't already, raw, beef knuckle bones from the freezer are great outlet for the need to chew. I spread an old sheet down, and monitor the dog and that will buy you some much need relief also. Make her do a bit of obedience first, too.

Hang in there.

What did they say about the "attacking"? Did the behaviorist see it in action?
We go for a 4.5km walk in the morning and again in the evening this is the time she likes to "attack" me, that and while I am sitting outside while she is doing her buisness, she just has her normal puppy landshark in the house and she stops when I tell her too but outside you can tell its different she is relentless! She has never been much of a chewer, she has NEVER destroyed anything in the house. During our walks we do a little bit of OB but I find the more I do the more aggravated she gets and by the end of the walk she is going for my feet my arms my legs anything her mouth can get, same with when we start our walk she will keep attacking me.

I really didnt think the whole alpha rolling would help with Ive tried shoving a toy in her mouth and engaging in that type of play but she has no interest. Ive tried ignoring her which is hard when you have a 40lb GSD hanging off your with their teeth (it hurts! I have cuts and bruises everywhere) so I felt like why not try it but it just makes it worse so I wont be doing it anymore.

I have a forest with a river about 5 minuet walk from me so I think I might try walking her over there in a little bit and see how she does.

I appreciate all of your responses, I will also start searching for a new trainer... and I will also mention that her OB training that she is doing now only has two more sessions left (tomorrow and then next tuesday) and then its done, and the whole class is NO treats, NO toys only Praise as a reward which my pup has not being doing so good at, so I think the next class we will join will definitely need to be some sort of like either clicker training or at least be able to use treats as motivation until the treats can be faded out
 

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I agree. Some dogs are very praise motivated, but some not so much.

I think you'll find quite a difference between off leash hiking (if it is safe for her there), and walks on a leash. Walking, the dog does not get a chance to stretch its legs. She may be reacting to the fact that she's outside and wants to stretch her legs and run around but can't because of the leash and she's becoming frustrated.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Even though she heels perfectly and sits when I stop, do you think a prong collar might be helpful to give a SMALL pop if she tries to go after me instead of just tugging on her leash when she has just her plain leather collar on? Or would that be more harmful than helpful? And yes I do know how to properly fit a prong and how to properly use it as I had used it with my last GSD and then gave it to someone who needed it when I no longer needed it for Diesel... I just dont want to cause any more harm to my pup and I want her to start to trust/respect me
 

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Surprised

Both my GSDs "attacked" me regularly during their landshark days but it went away when they didn't get what the wanted, me to play with them in rough games of chase.

I even got knocked down once when off-leashing my MAX when the charged me and hit my right thigh with a full-speed body blow. Only later did I learn that my Son had taught the dog to do this sort of rough play when he visited infrequently from college.

There's nothing you're describing outside of the food aggression that I find unusual for an animal with a lot of unspent energy.

When the dog is hungry, perhaps before breakfast and then again before dinner exercise your dog. Get a flirt poll and a kong. Use the flirt pole for at least 30 minutes (I usually go for 45 as Zeus is older now and more proficient at the pole) and then at least 15 to 20 minutes on Kong retrieve. Someone here taught me to use two kongs to keep the action going (throw one, command retrieve or fetch, let the dog fetch and drop the kong and at the same moment of release of the first kong throw the second in the opposite direction).

Work the dog prior to your walk to the point that she is obviously considerably tired. Modestly water the dog. Then walk the dog and set a FAST pace.

WALK HER USING TREATS (she seems food motivated and remember she'll be tired and hungry). Regularly interrupt the walks to reinforce obedience like sit, stay, down, and come. Treat when she succeeds and occasionally when she's just walking close to heel like you want.

Use a training collar for the first few weeks, at least, for corrections, not punishment. I WOULD NOT USE A PRONG COLLAR AT ALL. You may not need to use it after she's about six months at all. Just put the collar on her and dead-ring it to the flat collar so she still feels the weight of it.

While the collar is alive (not dead-ringed to the flat collar) use it to correct with sharp but not forceful snaps of the leash when she isn't walking like you would prefer, bring her to the position you like for her walk and immediately treat. Use the free end of the leash as a helicopter or fan blade in front of yourself or the dog if she pulls ahead of you.

But If she "attacks" you by coming "up the leash" use the leash and the collar to, well, lift her front feet off the ground and keep her off of you. But do not literally hang her. Take care not to do harm but do what you must to make her uncomfortable EACH AND EVERY TIME SHE COMES UP THE LEASH AT YOU.

I'll bet in the beginning you need only do this two or three times each walk to get her to understand that she's violating a serious limit with you when she comes up the leash. In a week or two, I think her undesirable attacks will disappear.

LF
 

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Am I the only one that uses a muzzle? http://www.morrco.com/itpoldogmuz.html

I'm sorry that I don't know all the details about the story, like age of dog,and exactly what is going on. It seems like he's under 1 year old?

First of all, stop kneeing your dog, and pinning him. I haven't heard of one case where this was a permanent solution to anything.

Then, hand feed him for a week. All his food comes from your hand. I know it's annoyingly slow, but all my puppies get this treatment when they come to live with me.

No petting, or cuddling. Make everything business.

Take him for good long walks and make him wear a muzzle. They try to take it off at first, but I find this brand will stay on when my male uses both feet to try to pull it off. And it's cheap. Italian Basket Dog Muzzles If you have an attachment for your bicycle, you might start very short bike runs (wearing a muzzle). He's a puppy, so he shouldn't go bicycling yet, but some short training rides would be good.

If you want to play obedience games with him and he starts biting you, put him away to end the session.

He really sounds like a handful. Sorry, you got something you weren't expecting, but it happens.
 

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I don't think any of my dogs would respond well to pinning them down, specially Lakota. I would not recommend getting physical like that. I think your best option is to post video of what she's doing otherwise everyone is just going to be guessing at the behavior.
 

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I don't know why any trainer is still advocating pinning. Think about it - if you pin your dog down, what's the first thing that it's going to want to do? Get back up! So you're actively encouraging a struggle?! Master trainer? Huh.

I agree 100% with the off-leash hikes, and getting rid of the excess energy. I'm sure you'll see a *huge* improvement with that. As well as helping with your bonding.
 

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Remember that this forum is full of opinions, mine included. Most of us are not trainers, other than our own dogs.
So while the forum can be very useful it can offer too many opinions at times.

I would find a trainer that you believe in and stick with that advice alone for a while.

Too many cooks spoil the broth and will have you second guessing everything. IMO
 

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...Please keep asking questions you may have. The forum can help you.
And I'd like to add, these questions may help other forum members who may be too shy to ask these questions.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Well I just got back from our first ever hike together, we were gone for almost 2 hours! And she LOVED running in the forest and sniffing everything off leash. She even went "swimming" for the first time! lol here are some picture and two links to youtube to the videos I took, sorry for the less than stellar quality they were taken on my blackberry


 

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Did she attack you on your walk or was she completely happy and content?
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Did she attack you on your walk or was she completely happy and content?
She was very content, she did start to bite my feet when we started up the driveway but it was more of her just grabbing my shoelace that was untied, she has been passed out for about hour now lol I will take her out again tomorrow and I will try to do it everyday if Im not to busy with work but I do have the next 6 days off
 

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Videos and comments support the hypothesis that she's very high energy or that her energy is not being sapped before the attacks.

LF
 
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