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Discussion Starter #1
I know there is a lot of good information on this forum and a lot of different opinions. I will be reading through the threads and other sources for help but I wanted to throw out some recent events put on my thick skin and hope to hear some directions from you guys. Note Maple is my first GSD.

I want to give a little background before I get into the specifics of recent events.

  • got her at 7 weeks
  • at 14 weeks she currently knows sit, down, stand, leave, and a little bit of stay. and of course no most of the time and good girl. I feel like I'm behind. We have been doing some remodeling and other things that are competing for time.
  • early only she lashed out at my wife and I picking her up sometimes (maybe total of 4-5 times). Mabye like 9-10 weeks. Like crazy lash out. She doesn't do that anymore.
  • had her at a family gathering around 1 toddler and one 6 year old with no issues around 11 months. Toddler she just inspected. 6 year old she played with.
  • we have family dogs she has played with. Old Daschund that lives with her we have to keep her from terrorizing to much wanting to play but she has gotten lots better. In-laws 7-8 month puppy wants to hump her all the time but last play date was pretty good and they got along well. Maple was more active with her than the first time met. My oldest daughter's beagle comes and visits (she is here now for the day) and they get along great and play well.. My youngest daughter's Husky is the one problem area. Wants to play too rough. Beagle is protective of the puppy. Husky has a toy problem. She latches on to specific toys and bury's them moving them form place to place to keep the other dogs way from it. Well she was trying to bury it in Maple's bed. Maple stuck her nose in beside her and Suki turned on her hard. I jumped in to defend. Luna came flying from 15 feet away and went into to Suki and that is normally it but they didn't stop this time so I had to jump in to separate. Luna (beagle) had one small puncture behind her ear. Only family (wife's siste) dog started off bad with it growling at her when we came to house (in-laws-dogs) and Maple getting scared but later got them together and all was fine.
  • we have a vet that comes to our house. first visit she was perfect. second the lashed out at her when trying to check her teeth. Old school vet from ATM and has been like dog whisper with all our other dogs. She comes Monday so we'll see how that goes. I'll probably do any holding needed.
  • at about 11 weeks took her to home depot, lowes, hobby lobby without incident. Just sat around in spots in the store and let people come up to her.
  • couple of weeks ago started taking her to PetsMart. First time at night on a slow day with no other dogs. Second time slow but one or two dogs. We just walk around the store and people watch. Second time only one issue walking in where she barked at a dog leaving that was pulling like crazy. Third time we greeted a two dogs. Both went fine but little boy came up without dog and wanted to pet her. He moved like molasses towards her and she growled/barked/snapped. That was last week and haven't been back yet.
  • I work at home but sitll trying to get in a solid routine of training and play time. Example yesterday dealing with house and other issues she was crazy late evening without a lot of attention that day. I did get in a walk but not far.
So I assumed I've made some mistakes. So now onto more of the recent.

Started walking her around neighborhood about 2-3 weeks ago. In general she is very fearful. Whether this was good or bad I would take her in the morning. We live by an elementary school. I walk her half block around the corner and stand by the crossing guard and let her watch kids cross. She greeted the crossing guard and loves her, even didn't get scared when she saw her next all in big coat and hat. The early problems were fear around the cars when walking but one at the crossing guard area she would just site and watch the kids. All was good. Mostly kids looked at her but didn't come up to her. A few times kids coming from our direction would walk by and she would just walk up behind them and sniff or try to lick their hand. Other wise she is in a sit and even got to points now where she just lays. One of the trouble areas was before and after about the cars. She would jump on the back of my legs. Note I used a training/choke leash for walking her and walking 80% time is loose leash beside me with good girl praise and treats. Last two days he has stopped jumping on my leg and now just jumps in the air beside me. So progress. Early on when we got near the house she wanted to go ahead. I would do a little crazy man back and forth and she seemed to be responding right. Last two times she hasn't tried to get home quickly. She will get maybe 1 head length in front of me and a small correction she falls back. If she tries to stop and sniff or sees bike or car she and stops just slight tightness on the collar makes her come with me.

Sorry for bit of rambling. So worst thing today is kid finally wanted to come pet her. I was okay but waited to late to tell him to let her come to him. She got close enough hand over her head she growled and nipped him. He didn't cry but was like that hurt. No parent was around. He was probably 7-8. Another kid came right up after that and i tried to get him to stand back but he was not listening until finally dad got him to come on. He approached from side though and didn't reach for her and was right beside her with me kneeling holding her trying to push him back and let him know. Kind of like a puppy he was not listening. She didn't growl or bark or anything. The next group of kids came and I don't think they were reaching or anything but had just been closer than normal and she started barking at them as a warning. By that time bell had rang and I headed back to house. So twice she has nipped a kid reach out to her. So I know I have to not let that happen anymore. All other times at the crossing have been great. She just sits and watches and likes to greet the crossing guard. So is the crossing guard time a bad idea? Or just need to make sure the kids don't approach and then figure out a better way to socialize her with kids. I'm I overdoing the walk in the morning and should really be backing up and finding less traffic times so she'll get more used to cars first and get more confidence. She doesn't bark at cars. She does look/turn around and watch them and I know she is fearful but just not a lot.

So let the comments rip. I'll put on thick skin and seriously listen and evaluate all comments. I did start reading the early socialization thread but here aare like 200+ posts and haven't gotten to all them. By no means am I over concerned but again I know this group has a lot of knowledge that I don't.
 

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You already said she is very fearful. This trait will not change and is genetic in nature. You possible can raise her thresholds for fear, but when really stressed, she will return to her baseline. Your concern should be the likelihood she will bite someone due to her nerves.
 

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Wow. I hope you don't have future trouble. I could maybe possibly guess that the behavior has to do with her maturing. Kias's attitude toward the public changed drastically as well during the 10-15 week stage of his life. Also maybe the body language of the different children. Maybe she sensed something different in one than she did in the other. Just a random guess. I really don't know.
I've heard of people asking kids who come to give the dog a treat or something to help her possibly associate others with treats.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I guess I should also clarify use of the word "very" fearful. Not an excuse at all but sometimes our definitions are different and I may not should have used the terms. Also I know the long explanation was about all the bad and little about good. I also understand genetics definitely play a role. What I want to make sure his me as her owner and her environment is handled the best way possible.

1) How she reacts when walking.

We leave the house and out our front door one block down is a main road. Just two lane with neighborhoods on one side and park and school on the other. But during mornings gets a decent amount. So normally always one or two cars as as we are walking out door to the side walk. She is slack leash but very at-tentative to the cars going down the road. At about 20 feet we hit the side walk and turn right on our neighborhood street side walk. She walks slack leash and turns with me maybe glancing back for the road traffic noise. We get half way down our block and a neighbor is normally pulling out. As I'm walking she stops and is watching the truck back out. As the leash tightens she comes along with me back into slack mode. Next stop is another road that is busy but not fast moving cars but slower due to school zone and crossing. Today she was attentive to the cars and would stop then walk then stop looking at them. Maybe a time or two she might have tried to go to my right side but didn't jump on me. We pass a girl (middle school age) and she just turns and follows here trying to sniff as we walk by. That was all. We get to the crossing guard another 50-60 feet and she greets her. She ends up in a sit about 10-15 feet from where the kids cross. Some running some walking. She just sits there and watches. Kids queue up maybe 3-5 sometimes waiting for her to go out again but they are always that 10 feet distance from where I'm at. At times kids and adults will come from our other side walking up and she normally walks towards them and sniffs them and today licked the little girls hand who was glancing at her but not really interacting. No bark. No growl. If she was up already in standing in the side walk she might walk behind me and then come around me to sniff them etc. After all kids are gone we head down to the next street where we have passed man with two dogs. He stays to other side and sometimes stops in a drive as we pass. She has barked at them. As mentioned earlier when first starting to go out couple weeks ago she would pant a lot at some points and jump on back of my legs. I would correct and then praise when she didn't and now last tow times she just jumps by my side not on me. Also this has happened when nearing the first turn on the school street but today none of that. It did happen on the neighborhood street back. On that street we get we do get a kid riding his bicycle at that time. She normally turns back towards him as he is coming and then turns back as he goes by. The excitement on that street may be because she knows he is coming. She doesn't bark, growl or show any other types of fear. Finally a few times back a couple walking stopped to greet us and she barked at them as the man attempted to come to her. He faced her straight on which may be the important part with the kids too.

So yes there is some fear when walking but she hasn't been doing it very long and is getting better by the day. Just today we had the bit and barking with the kids. So is that "very" fearful behavior don't know and may have used the wrong word.

2) How she reacted to people early on 10 weeks at Lowes, Home Depot, Hobby Lobby. I would say good. We didn't walk because I handn't work with her on leash and if I did she would start the jumping on the back of my legs thing. I think it is mostly she wanted me to pick her up. What I did do was find a decent isle where we could sit and not be in the way. People would come and I would have them give her a treat. All well. Sometimes she might shy way but rarely. At times she got comfortable enough to just lay there.

3) PetsMart was her first introduction to non family dogs. Walking around PetsMart no jumping on my legs. Lots of sniffing. We walked by people and would just attempt to sniff. Some adults to come up and greet her fine. There were the two dog greets that were fine. As with crossing mostly when not walking may stand near the registers about 10 feet away as people walk through. Couple of dog greetings in that area. Two younger kids did come up and I had her give her a treat.l Can't remember if this was the one kid with the attempted nip or if they were different. As for the nip attempt kid came straight at her with hand over reach over her head like he was going in slow motion because his dad said go slow. She didn't like it. In general no barking or growling except for that time and the one time with the dog leaving as we came in and was pulling towards her like crazy. Got close and she just started barking.

4) Other pet store I forgot. Walked around with no one around and she was slack leash maybe jumped a few times but in general good. Getting close to leaving and we stopped about 10 feet away from man with lab puppy at the register. No barking growling or anything. Just sitting and watching. Not pulling towards or away. The three young kids came in with large dog pulling like crazy and they end up coming our way. I just stayed were I was with her in site and as the dog got close trying to pull to her she started barking at her with little bit of forward motion. They went on and we left.

5) We will see about what happens with the vet, Monday. I don't know if last time with her was fear and was more of I really don't like that and will be a huge brat which she did with us early on picking her up and she got uncomfortable, felt restrained. As for this behavior she has not done this with any of my other family members.

6) Family event she played well with 7 year old nephew but it was more he had a string with toy and she was chasing it while he ran around the yard. He was not going straight up in front of her to pet her. Also at one point my family was out shooting their pistol and this noise only made her back up two steps and watch.

So again is this very fearful I don't know. We say fearful only because my kids have said she is a fraidy cat and she has whined at times wanting us to pick her up or the whole jumping on the back of my leg thing.

Let me know your thoughts. I think lessons learned are kids are a no greet situation until more confident. Even then no straight on over the head. Always from the side. Same with adults since with that one couple she barked. Will make sure to have them call her to come to them if she wants and also work with the treats. If there are other things I should be aware of I'm open ears.

Thanks.
 

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Get a very good private trainer now to take her out with you to different places. Have the trainer work her and take a video so you can refer to it later. It’s worth whatever it costs now, to stop this right away. Your dog is very young to show that much dog aggression and it will only get worse.

Why are there toys around when you have a toy aggressive dog in your home? Pick up and put every toy in a closed closet or a garage while the husky is there and don’t let any dog have a toy.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
@LuvShepherds With the Husky incident this was one and only first time the aggression with the toy has come to that level. Even with other dogs. I think it was she stuck her nose right down with her which hadn't happened before. There has been the I'm going to take the toy and go over here and if you want it back I'll give you some slight under breadth growling but even dogs without the toy issue have that problem. Also it ends up just being like one toy. Other toys they are play with and it could have a toy and 30 seconds later Maple has the toy. As for the digging and hiding she hasn't really done it that much. The husky tries to bury in the corner of the house and places but first time burying in the yard. I think maybe just because this was first time they were all three together and were spending a good bit of time outside together. But yes now we will be more aware and take you instruction.

As for Trainer we will be looking into that. Not sure if you got a chance to hear my clarification. You analysis may still be the same even after I tried clarification. I would like to hear if that is the case and the aggression portion you are speaking is specifically the two instances with the younger kids growl and biting is a "big" concern and is straight fear issue that will escalate. I hear you on the trainer vs handling by myself though but one concern is getting the right trainer. We are in town of about 300k a third almost college students. Never looked for behavioral type training before and it is has just been puppy training and obedience from place called from place called Puppy Love Training.

Thanks for your comments!
 

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I’m glad you are taking it seriously. Toy aggression is very bad and can escalate. If you keep toys away, there will be no toy fights.

If you message your location to a moderator they can possibly steer you toward someone in your area who can help you find a behaviorist.
 

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Your dog is anxious obviously.She seems to do better when you keep your distance and observe rather than interact directly.A really effective way to build her confidence is to reward her with treats/praise whenever she looks away from the scary thing and looks at you.She'll feel safe with you and less concerned about what's happening around her.My boy has an aversion to people getting too close or staring at him.He avoids proximity by leaving my side and walking behind me for a moment,then right back in position.If I stop to talk to someone he sits calmly behind me and has been known to lay down and nap if I'm yaking for a long time.Every so often he'll decide a person is ok and greet them.Also every so often someone will reach out to pet him and he deftly slips out of reach and goes on with his day.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Update: In touch with 1 on 1 trainer. See him Thursday. Also some new observations.

PetsMart trip last night. Did the PetsMart rounds to try and watch Maples body language. Stayed my distance and all was pretty good. I think she barked (once) at a large labradoodle that walked by down an isle. Other dogs were there she was interested in but didn't bark and we just stayed our distance and all fine. Had her great a couple of adults and all was fine. One mother with two boys approached and I stopped her and told her he had bitten a child today. She stated she had GSD and had worked with rescues and was ok if I was ok. So I thought we would take it slow and see. Maple definitely didn't like the kids. Went around on the other side of me. Mother was holding kids under her and she reached out and Maple came up and sniffed her. So knowing she was nervous just took a step back but then she decided to walk around and sniff the older boy and licked his hand. Then she licked the smaller boys hand. He started clapping and I was expecting big reaction but nothing.

Walk today. I didn't go to the crosswalk this morning. Took her for a walk around 11:00. Was good down our street even when out of know where this small dog comes barking out of the bushes. Startled us both and but she just turned to face where it was coming from then we turned back. So that was good. We got to the school street with the cars though and she was anxious when a big panel truck came by followed by a mail truck. Body language was the jumping up and down (not on me still). Trying to walk around in front of me. And mouth open panting as jumping. She was bit better down the edition street heading back but still did the jumping and mouth open panting a couple of times. She did walk by several parked cars on the street and was checking out the first one but second one she didn't pay much attention to and she was like 3 inches away from it. So I feel like it is mostly the moving traffic. Louder/larger they are the more scary. The reaction are not huge to me but they do show she is nervous.

So she is definitely skiddish of smaller kids. Had not had that early on with family but maybe it is the setting. Thanks everyone again for commenting.
 

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I admit I haven’t read everything you typed... I don’t do well with super long posts.
PetSmart is just about the worst place to take a 12 week old pup. Too many unvaccinated disease carriers in there, too many untrained dogs with clueless owners.
Do not let anyone reach over her head or hover over her. To any dog that is unsettling, to a nervous dog it’s scary.
Get her evaluated by a trainer familiar with the breed. Post your location so you can get recommendations for good trainers.
In the meantime, keep her away from kids.
 

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  • got her at 7 weeks
  • at 14 weeks she currently knows sit, down, stand, leave, and a little bit of stay. and of course no most of the time and good girl. I feel like I'm behind.
Not trying to be critical, but I wonder why you feel so pressured to "train" this ity bity puppy. Slow down, stop overwhelming her, it's not helping her! It's a marathon not a race!

People talk alot about the "socialization window" ending, supposedly at 16 wks. In my experience that's a bunch of baloney!

When a puppy is young they are unafraid, because it hasn't yet dawned on them that there really are some scary things out there. After 16 wks or so they do, and it's not at all uncommon for a puppy to have what is known as a "fear period" at that point, because they are adjusting to their newfound reality. It usually passes in a week or two. But continuing to push them with "scary" encounters is not at all helpful until they do!

At 14 wks your puppy hasn't had his final round of vaccines, so taking him frequently to places frequented by other dogs is risky for his health, not to mention his peace of mind!

Snapping at kids, and you're still asking if you should take him down to the school crossing each morning? Wow! Listen to your puppy! It's too much too soon!

Socialization is exposure, not being petted by strangers or kids or other dogs for that matter, at least not taking it beyond what your puppy is comfortable with. Instead introduce her to new floor textures, elevators, stairs, walks in the woods, farm animals, bleachers, a ride in a wheelbarrow, motorcycles, bicycles, baby strollers, back packs...you get the idea. Just lots of stuff. But all the while, honor her feelings. If she's showing signs of being uncomfortable give her time, let her watch from a distance she seems comfortable. You'll make better progress if you do!
 

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I have not read all of your posts either but have seen others commenting on socialization and thought I would add my two cents.

Extensive research has shown that the socialization period does close between three to five months with the average being four months so you do want to socialize her now. If you miss the window, socialization can still take place but it will take more work, require more time, and you most likely won't get the same results as you would have if done earlier. That window is so critical that most high level dog trainers do take their dogs out and widely expose them despite the risk of disease.

Suspicion is a genetic trait in many German Shepherds. It is not based in fear but mistrust. It's one of the traits that add to a GSD's natural ability to protect and guard. Without reading your posts in depth, I can only speculate that it may be a possibility and it will be apparent at an early age. It will become less pronounced with proper exposure as confidence builds.

You want to expose her to things but at her pace, not yours. Let her take her time to explore things and feel comfortable. I am by no means recommending that you walk your puppy off leash, but do keep in mind that your puppy knows that she is leashed and that the leash removes her first fright option of flight leaving her with fight or freeze.

One person suggested to reward your puppy with treats when she sees a trigger before she reacts. Another method is to reward your puppy with "retreat" instead. I think in your case you might want to start with letting the puppy leave the area and then over time working up to treats.

Have you considered doing your exposure in a less hectic atmosphere? A quieter park or trail with just enough "busy stuff" to get her attention? Too little distraction may cause her to hyper focus while too much will overwhelm her. You can safely put her on a longer line and let her explore more at her leisure.
 

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Thanks everyone for responding. I will say with every other dog I have not participated in breed specific forums. I realize everyone wants to help and have GSD owners make good decisions. I'm realizing though that in circumstances like this what to do and not do with your dog is just about like politics and religion. Everyone wants the same thing but everyone has their way. Play tug aware. Don't play tug a ware. Use or don't use prong collars or choke collars. Don't inhibit prey drive. The list goes on. This a little tongue in cheek so don't take it personally. Also I realize not everyone likes long posts but sometimes the devil is in the details. So maybe I'll make specific short points as follow-ups to this post. This one will be specific to two of the comments.

1) Cross walk stop participation was really by accident. I walked her for the first time and oh school is starting. Hope it goes well. It did. She greeted the crossing guard with enthusiasm. She didn't show any signs of nervousness with what took place. Maybe not all the cross walks you guys have been took are structured. But this one was. Kids are either with their parents walking up or had walked on their own or just got out of car on the side street and are going to cross because the parent didn't want to wait in the regular line. Kids queue up on the sidewalk. They are not running wild. Guard makes then wait as she goes to stop traffic then she says ok cross. I was 10 or so feet away from the queue line on the main street (90 degree angle from the crossing spot). Kids just looked at her and continued on. Kids sometimes came down the sidewalk we were by so passed and she sniffed their hand/licked it. Up until the approach by this child did Maple show any anxiety by sitting and watching the kids cross. She was mostly in sit, would at times lay down in the grass, or find a sick or sniff around in the grass/dirt. Etc. As she calmly set there I would feed her treats. No signs of anxiety with that activity.

2) My vet (a Texas A&M graduate) told me I could take her out. I had not done it before with prior dogs but I had taken instruction from people ideally in the know say take your dog there on the slowest day a few times and let them get used to the store. Building up to a Sat. visit. Also instructed to watch for body language and make determination whether the dog was approachable. So that is what I did. I steered away from most contact. Again like the cross walk keeping a good distance and just watching, praising and treating for good behavior. Two dog greats in 3 visits went well. Two wild dogs getting close made her nervous but that was 2 instances. Most of the time we just walked the store around the isles in and out.

So i guess i better cut it short. Just know that I wasn't taking Maple everyday to cross walk. I think there were about 4 times. It was always in the morning only. They were short walks. Kids were not running wild around Maple. Just the opposite. Same with PetsMart. very structured activity. Yes I made some mistakes. I reached out here to the forum to learn. I take evaluate negative reactions just as important as positive ones. I'm a pretty easy going guy. Again I know everyone here must love GSDs and wants their dogs worlds and others to be good. Note Maple is a companion. She will not be breed. I will take every negative aspect with her seriously. Ok getting long. Goodnight and thanks!.
 

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Oh and I can't walk her in the local remote wooded park. My son took a young dog there and had a pack of dogs come running out of the woods and surround him and his dog. Luckily the girls over them were came up fairly quickly. Scary he said. So really no where is safe. I definitely adhere to the thought of no dog parks. The area where I walked her is "my": block. Ideally she needs to get accustom to her surroundings. Whether it sounds like it or not I'm also cautious. We have not been back to the crosswalk.
 

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Luckily the girls over them were came up fairly quickly. Scary he said. So really no where is safe.
Not sure what you meant here, but assuming a typo...

Anyway, I would urge you to find a place thet can let your puppy run free. It's a natural tendency for a puppy/dog to follow a "known" person. It's really fun for the dog or pup, and it helps with bonding.

WARNING - at about 5 or 5 1/5 months, after following me everywhere, my puppy for the first time looked right at me and decided to go the other way! So be prepared for a little disobedience at that age LOL!

In any event Glen, all the best to you and your puppy! Sounds like you've got a handle on things...
 

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Thanks everyone for responding. I will say with every other dog I have not participated in breed specific forums. I realize everyone wants to help and have GSD owners make good decisions. I'm realizing though that in circumstances like this what to do and not do with your dog is just about like politics and religion. Everyone wants the same thing but everyone has their way. Play tug aware. Don't play tug a ware. Use or don't use prong collars or choke collars. Don't inhibit prey drive. The list goes on. This a little tongue in cheek so don't take it personally. Also I realize not everyone likes long posts but sometimes the devil is in the details. So maybe I'll make specific short points as follow-ups to this post. This one will be specific to two of the comments.

1) Cross walk stop participation was really by accident. I walked her for the first time and oh school is starting. Hope it goes well. It did. She greeted the crossing guard with enthusiasm. She didn't show any signs of nervousness with what took place. Maybe not all the cross walks you guys have been took are structured. But this one was. Kids are either with their parents walking up or had walked on their own or just got out of car on the side street and are going to cross because the parent didn't want to wait in the regular line. Kids queue up on the sidewalk. They are not running wild. Guard makes then wait as she goes to stop traffic then she says ok cross. I was 10 or so feet away from the queue line on the main street (90 degree angle from the crossing spot). Kids just looked at her and continued on. Kids sometimes came down the sidewalk we were by so passed and she sniffed their hand/licked it. Up until the approach by this child did Maple show any anxiety by sitting and watching the kids cross. She was mostly in sit, would at times lay down in the grass, or find a sick or sniff around in the grass/dirt. Etc. As she calmly set there I would feed her treats. No signs of anxiety with that activity.

2) My vet (a Texas A&M graduate) told me I could take her out. I had not done it before with prior dogs but I had taken instruction from people ideally in the know say take your dog there on the slowest day a few times and let them get used to the store. Building up to a Sat. visit. Also instructed to watch for body language and make determination whether the dog was approachable. So that is what I did. I steered away from most contact. Again like the cross walk keeping a good distance and just watching, praising and treating for good behavior. Two dog greats in 3 visits went well. Two wild dogs getting close made her nervous but that was 2 instances. Most of the time we just walked the store around the isles in and out.

So i guess i better cut it short. Just know that I wasn't taking Maple everyday to cross walk. I think there were about 4 times. It was always in the morning only. They were short walks. Kids were not running wild around Maple. Just the opposite. Same with PetsMart. very structured activity. Yes I made some mistakes. I reached out here to the forum to learn. I take evaluate negative reactions just as important as positive ones. I'm a pretty easy going guy. Again I know everyone here must love GSDs and wants their dogs worlds and others to be good. Note Maple is a companion. She will not be breed. I will take every negative aspect with her seriously. Ok getting long. Goodnight and thanks!.
Not sure which side of the tug debate you ended up on, but it's a great tool for training and building bond.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Not sure which side of the tug debate you ended up on, but it's a great tool for training and building bond.
Nigel, I love playing tug with Maple and she loves it too. My comments were more just everyone has different opinions. There are currently two activities she is excited about doing. One is tug but the other is a home made flirt pole. I've seen people say don't have a dog this young work a flirt pole. Tell me where i'm wrong and I'll listen. Our short sessions are done in the yard. I do not make her jump. I just let her chase and pivot with redirection. She really seems to like the full out run where it is just inches from her mouth. She has gotten smarter about chasing it too. So some will say that is just teaching her to chase cats, small dogs, bicycles, etc. Unfortunately our cat hates dogs and hisses at her and even seems to antagonize Maple. So the chase with him does happen. We are working on stopping it. Eventually the cat goes back to my daughter when she moves to WA State and I don't see anymore cats in our future. I hate litter. It is what it is. Maple has shown no interest in chasing anything though. Bicycles have come by and nothing. Squirrels have run near and nothing. Our squirrels here also seem to like antagonizing my daughter's husky and now Maple. The other part about the chase is she gets to tug a bit when catching and then she gets the leave command. Should have used drop maybe but leave has worked. Leave is not always the greatest but we keep working on it. Inside tug play we don't work on leave. That is for when she runs off with my underwear, socks, etc. My only concern about the chase of the flirt is will it set her up for injuries later on. I would say what we do (no jumping) is no worse than the tug play and the exercise is great.

Thanks for all the comments. I'm going to post again about Training update from today.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Not sure what you meant here, but assuming a typo...

Anyway, I would urge you to find a place thet can let your puppy run free. It's a natural tendency for a puppy/dog to follow a "known" person. It's really fun for the dog or pup, and it helps with bonding.

WARNING - at about 5 or 5 1/5 months, after following me everywhere, my puppy for the first time looked right at me and decided to go the other way! So be prepared for a little disobedience at that age LOL!

In any event Glen, all the best to you and your puppy! Sounds like you've got a handle on things...
Thanks Tim. The comment was supposed to be about the girls who were responsible for the pack of dogs that came up on my son and his dog. After the dogs surrounded my son the girls fortunately were just right near by and were able to corral the dogs. This is a no off leash park but it is wood trails and not much supervision. One thing about where I live is it is a college town with a lot of kids who have dogs. So most of the open spaces you still find people and dogs. The one place I do have is my moms place about 40 minutes away. She lives in the country on 20 acres. Still concerns there with wild hogs and poisonous snakes but about 10 acres out front is pasture just have to make sure she doesn't head for the fence and highway which is 70mph 2 lane road with most people doing 80.. Wish it were close though, but my mom would enjoy seeing me more, so maybe it is a win win.
 
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