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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
He really likes people but doesn't trust them. For instance he will never ever take food from anyone outside the family.

Someone could offer him the most delicious treat in the would and he will point blank refuse to eat it, spit it out or walk away and blank the person.

He's so suspicious and will only ever take food that I personally give him on a walk and everything will be ignored. He's never had a bad experience to make him this was. It's just how he naturally is.

I absolutely don't see this as a bad thing. I've just never seen another dog like this before.

Same with obedience behaviours. His obedience is great but he will absolutely point blank to refuse to do anything for someone outside his inner circle / family.

Again not something I see as a problem.

The only time it's even been a slight problem when at my club when my trainer took his leash and tried to demonstrate something to me. He completely refused to pay any attention to my trainer (which he knows well) and even do the most basic of things. Bit of a giggle "yeah, he's not going to work for me" and hands my boy back to me.


I find it so bizarre. Never had a dog like this before. Non of this is actually a problem or anything I've trained, it's just how he is.

Has anyone have a German Shepherd similar to this ?
 

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I spent a couple sessions teaching my last dog not to listen to other people's commands unless I gave permission, with the help of a young neighbor kid.

Interestingly enough, in her mind it only counted if I was present. But if I was anyone could tell her anything and she'd always look at me. If I didn't give permission she'd absolutely ignore them. 2 sessions of training 2 days in a row when she was about 3, and she did that dependably until the day she died, even with people we lived with for years!
 

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Yep, my boy is the same way. He doesn't dislike other people. He just doesn't have any use for them. He won't take food from them. The dog friendly neighbors we meet on our walks know to give the treats to me so I give them to him.

He doesn't work or play enthusiasticly for anyone except me. He listens the the immediate family... but if I am present he looks to me to nod my head head or say, "ok" before he does it. It kind of makes me sad that the kids don't have the same type of relationship with Ole that I had with my childhood dogs.

The first real sign that I recognized that the first dog trainer I was working with was not used to german shepherds was when she would take the leash to demonstrated something and ole would refuse to move. She was a well regard trainer in the area, whe just had no experience with opinionated German Shepherds.
 

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And I think it's one of their best qualities (among a myriad of others). :)
Exactly.
If you want a dog that loves everybody and fawns over strangers, get a GR or something 😁
 

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I will tell you my experience with one of the most famous dogs on this board, Carmspack Gus.
I waited a long time to finally meet him, and when I did, of course, I was very enthusiastic.
He ignored me, blew me off, I was invisible to him. It was both disappointing and hilarious at the same time.
I wouldn’t have expected any less.
I also didn’t expect to get a jumpy, goofy, enthusiastic greeting from him on the LAST day, just before I had to head for the airport. 😑🤣

@Saphire
@David Winners
 

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I believe that's a great trait. There are some animal haters out there that would toss poisened food and hope the dog would eat it. That happened to someone on the board. A beautiful GSD barked at a potential robber. The scumbag came back and tossed poisoned food and the poor soul ate it. Doggie died. I believe we should all train our best buddies to NEVER accept food from strangers. It only takes one time to tragedy.
 

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Harley is not food motivated (great eater, just doesn't work for food) and doesn't take food from strangers, fine with the whole family though.

The only time this was an issue was the only time I had to kennel him for three days. They didn't tell me until I flew home that he hadn't touched a single meal since I left.
 

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The only time it's even been a slight problem when at my club when my trainer took his leash and tried to demonstrate something to me. He completely refused to pay any attention to my trainer (which he knows well) and even do the most basic of things. Bit of a giggle "yeah, he's not going to work for me" and hands my boy back to me.
I find it so bizarre. Never had a dog like this before. Non of this is actually a problem or anything I've trained, it's just how he is.
Has anyone have a German Shepherd similar to this ?
Same experience! The trainer did demos with every other dog in the class. Typical reaction was to follow her eagerly, sniffing after the treats. Some would climb on her, lick her arms and hands. Very friendly, compliant dogs and she lured them into every position easily on command.

Then she got to Rumo, who was sitting beside me, and gave him a light tug on the leash. He didn't twitch a muscle, just sat there and ignored her. She held out hotdog, and tugged again. Again, he just sat there ignoring her! Then she tried dried beef liver or something...still, no response. So she gave up!

Once when he was in a down-stay, she came over and praised him, and stroked him on the head. He gave a low rumbling growl, and she jerked her hand back!!
Then she said, "You try that", and my dog flattened his ears and pushed his head against my hand happily.

So they are quite selective and loyal...
I also found it bizarre (previous dog = friendly Great Dane) and it took some getting used to!
But I guess that's what makes a dog with a protective nature - they naturally distinguish between known trusted humans and those who are not on the "approved" list!
 
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