German Shepherds Forum banner

1 - 20 of 23 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
1 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Good Afternoon, My one year old female Shepherd is the joy of my life. She is obedient, well socialized. I can take her anywhere, and she is a well behaved girl. Loves kids, adults and other animals. My issue is.... when a threat presents itself, she runs and hides. She is not afraid of thunderstorms or loud noises. My home was broken into while we were home, I was attacked and Gracie, bless her heart, ran and hide in the bedroom.... do I just have a lover not a protector. Is there anything I can do to change this? Thanks!!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,126 Posts
Oh dear - Gracie has a lot of confidence in your strength! This also happened to my friend with her collie. She was crossing the pasture with the collie and the bull charged - the collie ran behind her. Okay, I do recall reading somewhere that with a strong willed owner (not physical strength but mental) and a dog with a low drive this can happen. The dog gets the idea that you are completely in charge and can handle everything. I would start with tug - encourage her to bite it and praise and then let her win (each and every time) that gives her confidence in her abilities. If she won't accept the tug - try to put it on a rope and drag it - make it scoot on the ground - if she doesn't go after it. Then her drive is low. I would love her, install a burglar alarm and take self defense classes.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,150 Posts
I'm sure others can help on the training aspect, but I just wanted to say I'm sorry you went through that and I hope you're ok. I'm sorry your pup was scared too, she probably didn't know what to do, poor thing.

I don't think you can really count on your dog to protect you if they don't have the nerves and proper training for it. There are probably something you can do to boost her confidence though, but I'll let others chime in, as I'm not a trainer.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
19,157 Posts
Shasta is not a protector. Not even close. I knew early on she didn't have it in her. It's very likely, you won't be able to change it. I'm sorry you had this experience. I understand how scary it is just to have someone break into your home when you're there. Luckily, when it happened to me, Zena went after the guy. I've been attacked previously before I had the dogs.

Shasta is a low drive, low energy female. She doesn't even bark at the door when someone is there. The only reaction I've ever seen from her was when she saw a horse pulling a carriage and the dogs next door at my inlaws house or the dog she clearly didn't like walking past our house (she likes all dogs so that's says something).

I keep a baseball bat next to my bed as well as a couple telescopic batons around the house. I also have my shotguns in my bedroom closet.

It really depends on the dog, whether they'll act protectively or not. Some people say only trained dogs will protect. Zena wasn't trained. There are family pets who will react while others as you unfortunately found out, will run for cover. Natural instinct is fight or flight. If flight is an available option, most will choose that.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
99 Posts
Where were you at the time? Did she actually see you attacked? My Molly will run from a fear stimulus, but if she thinks someone is threatening me or my mom she comes over all raging wolf.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,318 Posts
Im so sorry you went through this. I hope you are okay.

I am very interested in what others have to say. My 5 month old hides behind me too. but like Mary Beth said he is also low prey drive. When playing tug he just holds it. He wont let go until you tell him but he doesnt try to take it from us or my other dogs. My other dogs grab it and do the death shake thing but Dexter just holds his end and lets them do their thing.

He loves everyone. I think hes a lover and not a fighter..lol..but my son says hes wimpy. From what i know, his parents were also the lick everyone type.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,150 Posts
I don't mean to make it sound like only a trained dog will protect, but I think only a trained/tested dog can be relied upon to protect.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12,379 Posts
My home was broken into while we were home, I was attacked and Gracie, bless her heart, ran and hide in the bedroom.... do I just have a lover not a protector. Is there anything I can do to change this? Thanks!!
I'm truly, very sorry this happened to you. Do you think you can share some of the details of what happened? Did you know the person who broke into your home? Were you the only adult there? What did you do when you were attacked? This can help build a better understanding of why your dog behaved the way it did.

If you're not up to sharing, it's very understandable.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,081 Posts
shes one year old good god shes a baby give her a few years. Would you expect your 12 year old boy to save you also?


YEah a lot of shepherds will respond like this these days but still at one years old that was a bit harsh. But again at one years old my dog tried to bite this jerk who was bothering her and pretending to jump over a fence. My dog had no real PP training at that point like she does now. ONly foundation work. Half of it is genetics. The rest is training.

If dogs are not bred to have strong civil aggression or are not bred for police patrol dogs etc.. then it is up to you to protect your dog sorry. But you do not buy a gsd that has never been bred for protection in how many years and then expect it to protect or even put on a show or show courage in a bad situation. THe whole point of going to working line breeders who are breeding for personal protection, police and PSA is to get nice dogs with strong natural protection ability. If your dog does not have it in their blood I would not really expect much at all other than the dog running away. We would have to protect the dog. Or your other better bred shepherd would protect the pooorly bred shepherd lol

It is not the poor sweet dogs fault humans bred them that way to not have courage in a bad situation. Dog does not need to be trained plenty of untrained shepherds would have bitten the man who broke in and or scared the living crap out of him. A good dog wiill help out no matter what. THe dog may not fight the man like a pp or police dog. But they will try their best.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
7,820 Posts
I can only imagine how you must feel .Having someone violate your home is incredibly hard and it makes you second guess everything.My husband is a regional truck driver and having "scary big dogs " has made me feel safe. Daisy was our supreme security alarm. She tried to come out a window when a guy was screaming at me in our front yard. That said the majority of my life w/ dogs I have to say your girl is what I needed. Happy ,friendly and no phobias. I have a GSD that his fear of storms and fire works actually made him sick. Daisy was horrible w/ small children , but knew no fear other then w/ certain vet techs. Looking back at her at a year old she was still a baby. Your girl may be more of a lover but there a lot more places a lover fits in. She also hasn't matured. I swear Lucky was a puppy till age three . Daisy at one was an attention hound and I don't think I saw the protective side till she was almost two and half. I'm glad you are physically ok. Take care.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
99 Posts
I can only imagine how you must feel .Having someone violate your home is incredibly hard and it makes you second guess everything.My husband is a regional truck driver and having "scary big dogs " has made me feel safe. Daisy was our supreme security alarm. She tried to come out a window when a guy was screaming at me in our front yard. That said the majority of my life w/ dogs I have to say your girl is what I needed. Happy ,friendly and no phobias. I have a GSD that his fear of storms and fire works actually made him sick. Daisy was horrible w/ small children , but knew no fear other then w/ certain vet techs. Looking back at her at a year old she was still a baby. Your girl may be more of a lover but there a lot more places a lover fits in. She also hasn't matured. I swear Lucky was a puppy till age three . Daisy at one was an attention hound and I don't think I saw the protective side till she was almost two and half. I'm glad you are physically ok. Take care.
Same with Molly. As a puppy/1 year ish adolescent she would shrink from things, then she seemed to realize that actually she was a fairly big dog and could rip someone up if push ever came to shove. She does not let certain types of people near me now(got her from a rescue and she showed signs of being abused...she thinks men = danger, especially men of moderate height with brown hair. It is a very specific alert light to her) Could be that Gracie is currently still at the 'puppy' stage and will develop the 'mean scary defense dog' mode when older.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
473 Posts
Sounds like you may not have a guardian and protector but you have wonderful companion. Cherish her for what she is. Be realistic with your expectations. It's reasonable to want a watch dog,that alerts you to intruders and raises an alarm or shows some defensive aggression, but a real personal protection dog, that will put its life in danger to attack an intruder is asking a bit much. And honestly, do you really want your best friend to take a hit for you? Even highly trained police K9's get injured and killed in the line of duty trying to take down a bad guy - and many of them would not make nice day to day house pets. A different dog may have come to your rescue, but there's no guarantee of how effective he'd be if he isn't specifically trained for it. If you can deal with a 2nd dog, perhaps you could find a good breeder and take some protection training classes with him.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,557 Posts
What you can do do is learn more about the breed, realize there are a ton of shatters out there, and research your next dog much better and how to train it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
86 Posts
What you can do do is learn more about the breed, realize there are a ton of shatters out there, and research your next dog much better and how to train it.
Not very eloquent but sadly, correct. There are many many people where, an attack like this happens, and they feel safer with an actual personal protection dog. Hence why i have the dog that i have. I also have a pit bull that if you broke into my house, he would probably go get his ball and bring it to the burglar, or pee on the couch and hide under the blanket. It wouldnt be such a bad idea to invest in buying a trained PPD or a puppy from a RELIABLE breeder that specializes in PPD's or working dogs. Keep in mind, in most cases "Good s*** and cheap, and cheap s*** aint good." That doesn't mean that just b/c you pay $XXXX for a dog, that he/she is the real deal. Thats why i say that you need to find a RELIABLE and reputable breeder/importer/trainer. Gracie is the cuddle bug, and the PPD is the guardian. Besides, it give Gracie someone to play with.

The whole 1 year old bit is BS. Some of the best PPD's we train are between 11-14 months old. Muzzle/hidden sleeve proofed and all. If Gracie is scared at 1, she will be scared almost as bad at 5. If getting another dog is out of the question, then invest in an alarm and a gun. I have all three. Reason being, im gone a lot and i live out in the country, 20 min from the nearest law enforcement, and i want my wife as safe as possible when I'm not home. This experience is eye opening to say the least. Like everyone else, i am so sorry for what happened to you and your home.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
15,195 Posts
some GSD's are protective some aren't. find a professional trainer
if you want your dog to be protective and that may not help.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,081 Posts
some GSD's are protective some aren't. find a professional trainer
if you want your dog to be protective and that may not help.
bad advice this dog does not sound like it has the genetics for it you are going to send her to a crook. Out for money will corner and beat the living crap out of her dog to get some kind of a reaction and say wow there is a protectioin dog! They need to have that edge. If they dont they just dont. Accept your dog the way it is and thank society and yourself for making a carebear happy go lucky world where every dog must be a walmart greeter to everything.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,267 Posts
Yea, you got a lover not a protector. There are things you can do to boost her confidence, but as others have mentioned, she'll probably always be this way. If you want protection you'll have to look for a dog that is breed for that purpose. Do some research on different breeders and trainers and see if your interested. Training is fun and addicting, even for a slacker like me. You'll develop a great bond with the dog and you'll know what to expect from him/her.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,452 Posts
What Chip said, more and more of the breed are like this these days, you cannot just go and get a GS from reputable breeders or BYB these days and expect to get the type dog you read about in Encyclopedia ....sadly, you must do your homework.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
3,779 Posts
Nothing you can do. Actual protection dogs must be methodically sought out, selected, and trained
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
14 Posts
Glad you are ok after the incident.. that is some scary stuff.

I do not think my German Shepherd would protect me, but I know for a fact that my English Bull Terrier would. I would not, however, leave it up to any of my dogs to protect me, which is why I have my CHL and two guns by my bed.
 
1 - 20 of 23 Posts
Top