German Shepherds Forum banner

1 - 9 of 9 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
2 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hello, I'm having many problems with my grandfather's dog. Basically he's became too old to take care of him, so I had to step in, the problem is that I can't handle the energetic (and probably frustrated) 1 year old dog
I know that exercise is key, but I can't walk him on a leash because he's just too strong and out of control, I can't even play with him in the backyard because he nevers calms down and sometimes I fear he will hurt me (not because he's agressive or anything, but because he is VERY enthusiastic and I am quite small)
I really want to help the dog (and my mental heath) but I don't know where to start, do you have any tips for me? Please note that I can't really afford a trainer right now, but I am willing to spend as much time on him as I need

Thanks!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
116 Posts
You are correct about the exercise. Left undrained, the energy will cause additional problems for him (and you) - the energy will come out in some form. This is not something that will change in days or weeks, and unless you're able to get bigger, you'll have to figure out a way to walk him at least an hour a day (some training and flirt pole work would be helpful). Twice a day is better. You should consider an APPROPRIATELY SIZED/PLACED prong collar. Go to leerburg.com and look at the articles and products. Used correctly, the prong collar is very effective (and humane) in controlling rambunctious dogs, but you should expect him to be very "lively" at the start of the walk, calmer afterward.

If you're not up for draining the energy via exercise, grandpa might consider re-homing to a good home, or via GSD rescue. GSD's are high-energy and a big commitment to own/operate, and there's no shame in not being up for a job you never wanted. Best of luck.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,289 Posts
I highly recommend a prong collar. The dog will self correct and once you see how easy it will be to go on walks or hikes with him I bet the two of you will be racking up lots of miles. Good luck.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,435 Posts
Training the dog will also go a long way towards gaining some control. Along with vastly increasing his exercise (with you there to supervise and monitor, it isn't enough to just leave him in a yard and expect him to adequately exercise himself), a training class will be of great benefit.
Sheilah
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,708 Posts
Generally humans walking large dogs don't provide much execise. We're just too slow for most of 'em. Which isn't to say that walks aren't great...They are, but they're not a good way to exercise a young, energetic & vigorous dog. I read once that attaching a tire to a harness & having the dog pull it while walking alleviates this problem. This could also be accomplished with a small cart. Biking with him once he's controllable is also a possibility.

Does he fetch? Throwing a balol repeatedly for him to retrieve is a good way to get him a decent work out. He'll also walk a bit easier if you can take the edge of him 1st.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
31,906 Posts
Prong collar, and dog classes.

You can get dog classes -- not at PetsMart or PetCo -- over-priced and too chaotic of an atmosphere, and not really the kind of training you need with an unchecked 1 year old dog. You can find dog training from a decent trainer for usually less than what petsmart charges -- last time I did Petsmart it was about $120 and a good trainer, with a good background in dog training/showing/judging, etc is about $85 for approximately six classes -- one 45 minute to 1 hour class per week for six weeks. This is MUCH more cost effective that a private trainer, and it will give you other people and dogs to train around. You learn some stuff and then go practice that for a week, and you build on it each week.

Usually, I would suggest that once you finish those six weeks, you sign up for the next six week session, whether the same level or the next level depends on you and your dog, and where you want him to be.

Really, if you cannot manage $100 for training classes, then you probably need to decide whether or not trying to provide for this dog is in the best interests of you and the dog. I know that his hard, but the dog is young, if you connect with a good rescue, he can go to a home where they have the energy, experience and resources to train and manage the dog and the dog will be much happier.

I know it's your grandfather's dog. And the dog is young. He is right at one of the most trying stages in puppyhood -- tons of energy, pushing the boundaries -- lots of people throw up their hands in frustration at this point with pups they have raised from 8 weeks.

I hope that you can find a good set of training classes, with an instructor who can help you fit the collar and show you what you need to know. This dog has the potential to be a lifetime buddy and companion to you. Good luck.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2 Posts
Discussion Starter #7 (Edited)
Thank you all so much! i'll look into dog classes in my area, I'll also try to find an appropiate prong collar for him and try to drain his energy retrieving a ball before going on walks. Relocating him is not an option right now, not before I try everything in my power to help him. Thanks again!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,001 Posts
Some ideas:

1. You can also try making a flirt pole. Get a big long stick, like a broom or a sweeper, tie a rope or some rugs (anything that the dog can chew or bite on) and wave it around the dog and let it chase but don't let it catch it all the time, especially if he's going to tear it apart quickly.

2. Find a big fenced in field where the dog can go offleash and run. If your dog likes to swim and has good recalls, let it go swimming, it's very good exercise.

3. Find a friend with a dog that your dog can play well with, they can play with each other and tire each other out.

4. Play mind games with him like the "find it" games. Show him a treat (tie him up first), then put it where he can see it, like 10 feet in front of him. Then untie him, say "find it" then let the leash go for him to get it. Slowly move the treat out further, then when you think he may kind of get it, hide it where it's not easily seen (like around a corner) but still in plain view and gradually increase the difficulty. You can also do toys if he will find toys.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
31,906 Posts
Commented below in blue.

Some ideas:

1. You can also try making a flirt pole. Get a big long stick, like a broom or a sweeper, tie a rope or some rugs (anything that the dog can chew or bite on) and wave it around the dog and let it chase but don't let it catch it all the time, especially if he's going to tear it apart quickly.

2. Find a big fenced in field where the dog can go offleash and run. If your dog likes to swim and has good recalls, let it go swimming, it's very good exercise.

3. Find a friend with a dog that your dog can play well with, they can play with each other and tire each other out.

Well now, I have to say, I disagree with this. If you are having trouble controlling the dog due to its size and power, how are you going to separate your dog from another if he chooses to go after the other dog while playing. Dogs can play together, yes, but it is something we should only do if we are confident that we have this dog completely under control. With each dog having an owner present, you can expect that if there is a problem, each owner can grab the back legs, or hang onto a leash.

But if an owner is having trouble walking their dog because of the dog's power, then how would that owner ever separate a dog if it is fighting with another -- the dog's power may be 2-3 times what it is normally when it is fighting. I guess, I just would not suggest this for this dog, at this time, with this owner. 1 year from now, after a year of training, and working with the dog, yes, at that point the owner should feel totally in charge and know she has the power to prevent her dog from continuing in any negative behavior if it starts.

4. Play mind games with him like the "find it" games. Show him a treat (tie him up first), then put it where he can see it, like 10 feet in front of him. Then untie him, say "find it" then let the leash go for him to get it. Slowly move the treat out further, then when you think he may kind of get it, hide it where it's not easily seen (like around a corner) but still in plain view and gradually increase the difficulty. You can also do toys if he will find toys.
 
1 - 9 of 9 Posts
Top