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Discussion Starter #1

Hello...My beautiful long coat GSD absolutely LOVES being outside...all the time! I have to bribe him to come inside at night but I'm not usually successful. He lays at the back door and when I open it, he runs the other way. He has a contained one acre back yard to run around in but I worry with the frigid temps. The colder it is, the more he loves it. He is 2 years old...anyone have this problem? I love him to pieces but I had longed for a much more affectionate dog. Should I try to discourage this or is it "normal"?
Thanks!
 

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I have no advice for you, but your dog is gorgeous! I'm a sucker for the coaties.
 

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What happens when he comes inside? For example, does he immediately have to go to his crate ect? Is there a cat inside he does not like?

Just asking to see if there is something he doesn't like when coming inside, or that he really just likes it outside that much? Or is he trying to play a game with you? Get you to go out and chase him and play?!?!? It would seem there has to be either 1. something positive about staying outside (that he will enjoy/gain) or 2. something negative about coming in, dogs pretty much operate in a way that they will always do what gets a reward/and not do what causes something negative.

It is odd for a German Shepherd unless he is wanting to play, the breed is known for wanting to be with their people all the time, inside or out! There is also the chance he just really likes it out there.....?

He is gorgeous
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Jack

Hi..thanks for the compliments! I agree, he is a beautiful dog :).
No, there is absolutely nothing that would prevent him from being inside. No cats, etc. He just loves to be outside. He IS like a little kid...he will jump on the door or scratch at the window and when I go to the door, he runs away. He continues this game for a long time. He definitely wants me to come out and play. He even rings the doorbell :p. Unfortunately, there is almost a foot of snow outside and I am going in for knee surgery this week so I can't go out and risk falling. Here is a photo of him actually "grinning" while galloping in the snow.
 

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It's definitely not normal for a gsd but some do love being outside and they definitely have the right coat for it! I would absolutely not let him sleep outside in these temperatures unless he's got a very well insulated dog house.
 

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How much time do you and he spend together? Do you do any training with him? Your post sounds like he's outside all day long plus trying to stay out at night. So I'm wondering if he doesn't see you as a family member or his place as being inside.
 

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Sure he loves the outside but maybe you can 'train' him or get him used to staying inside like you would do for crate training. Do you have a crate inside? My last dog had a covered crate in our enclosed breezeway with a pet door to the outside so she could choose for herself when to go outside. Do you have a covered crate or a dog house where he can be cozy? How is he in the warm weather? Does he want to come in where it is cooler? At 2 he is still a teenager and may be asserting some independence.
Sorry, no answers here and good luck with the knee!
 

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Our last female gsd was the same way--but we live in TX so the weather wasn't an issue. She had access to the garage and laundry room so I had a bed for here in each spot plus one on the deck. When she did come in she'd stay a little while but always ended up back outside. With your dangerously low temps I would make him stay in until the weather improves and have a party while he's inside so he'll have some fun
 

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My girl is the same way. She LOVES to be outside. There are many times I have to bribe her to come in. And when I feed her,I leave the door open ( I hate to do that when it is so cold out but oh well) and she will stick her head in to see when it is ready and only when it is on the floor will she come in to eat. Then I can shut the door. I don't let her back out after she is done until it is time to go potty because then she will want to be outside for another half hour or so- until I bribe her to come in again.
 

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Pyrate does love to be outside in the winter months here - around 60-70 degrees. The temperatures are not cold enough to be dangerous and he loves the air conditioner during the summer. I do make him come in at night. If he won't come I go out and get him. He is well behaved and I can leave the sliding door open during the day for him to come and go inside our fenced yard but he really prefers it outside. When he is inside he is comfortable and loves scratches and attention but if nothing is happening inside he would rather be outside. I don't have a problem with it unless it rains or something. Then I make him come in. If your weather is potentially dangerous then I would make him come in. You can bribe him with favorite toys, stuffed kongs, etc to come in and be comfortable maybe.
 

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My LH GSD loves to be outside as well. He is 16 months and he thinks his job is to 'patrol'. We have a large back yard and live in the country, so we get a lot of critters coming around. He wants to be where the action is. I make sure that when he is in, I let him out when ever he wants. Even if it's in the middle of the night. Some times he lasts all night, but mostly he'll wake me up to go out.
 

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My LH GSD loves to be outside as well. He is 16 months and he thinks his job is to 'patrol'.
Same here! Our longcoat female wants to go out much more than our male. (short coat) She'll come in with no problem but two minutes later wants to go back out. She walks the property line, lays down for a few minutes, gets back up, walks the line again.
Harley on the other hand goes outside, does his thing, waits for a few minutes to see if we're going to play and if we aren't, comes right back inside.
 

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Same here! Our longcoat female wants to go out much more than our male. (short coat) She'll come in with no problem but two minutes later wants to go back out. She walks the property line, lays down for a few minutes, gets back up, walks the line again.
Harley on the other hand goes outside, does his thing, waits for a few minutes to see if we're going to play and if we aren't, comes right back inside.
We have a large oak tree that the trunk is on the other side of the fence, but the brances etc. extend over into the yard (great shade for those hot summer days!). So Hondo will patrol the fence line and then walk under the tree staring up into the branches watching for those killer squirrels!
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Update...

Hi everyone..thanks for the thoughts and advice. No, Jack doesn't have a crate in the house. He has free run and when he does sleep inside (BTW, I finally got him in last night) he sleeps in our bedroom, on the bed for part of the night and on the floor for the remainder. When he is in the bed, he is very cozy (and while I know it's not good training to let him do it, I'll take what I can get). Just for clarification, when he is in the house, he is usually by my side. But the minute I say the word 'outside', he is at the door. The summer is the same.

What I did last night was to bring in his favorite toy in the world...his heavy plastic food bowl. Jack has a serious plastic fetish and whether it's our solar lighting posts in the ground, the plastic pool I have for him during the summer to keep him cool (it was not an unusual sight to see him running around the yard with the pool over his head) , or his dog bowl (s) he is totally obsessed!. I bought a Jolly Ball for him and he was so obsessed that I had to take it away. He coveted it like it was a baby. Needless to say, Jack DOES give us many laughs and smiles.



Sooo...I think I will keep his plastic bowl in the house (he is sleeping on it now, by my feet) and see if that works. Luckily, he won't go for the glass bowl I have substituted for it and I will now feed him inside rather than out.

Any other GSD's out there with a plastic fetish?

Thanks again...this forum is great!!
 

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Discussion Starter #17
p.s.

Everyone's dog is BEAUTIFUL!!! Jack is my 5th shepherd and the first with these "quirks". I'd love to share/see more photos..is there another forum where I should do that?
 

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Discussion Starter #19

I found a very short video my daughter took this summer of Jack romping with his pool. Please note that there WAS water in it but he drained it first. :) Not on top of his head in this one but maybe I can find that one too...
 
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