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Hi everyone, I have a bit of a sad story. I have a 3 year, 4 month old GSD. We got him at 8 weeks old and he has never been without me, I'm retired and stay home every day. I have treated Tian (my GSD'S name) like a son. He was aggressive at 8 weeks old, would bite all the time. We thought over time he would get over that, no so. If he was a human he would already have had a heart attack or nervous breakdown. He stays in the "alert" mode every time we leave the house. If he sees another dog walking on a leash he goes crazy. I started using a pinch collar about a year and a half ago and that has helped. I could eat out of his food dish if I chose to, nothing bothers him in that respect. We play all the time, catch, Frisbee and 4 walks a day. He doesn't like people, and I mean anybody. We socialized him at PetSmart numerous times to no avail.
He has chewed about everything in the house, so we decided to let that run its course and just replace everything afterward.
Here is my problem, and a serious one. I came home the other day saw the carpet in a pile after he chewed it. He was standing next to me so I reached down and slid my hand thru his collar, like I have done many times before, to scold him. I have never hit him and never will. I scold him with words and he understands what I say. He is the most intelligent dog I have ever had. At that moment all **** broke loose, he lifted his lip, growled and attacked me like I've never seen before. Seemed like a mili-second and I was bleeding all over the place. He bit my upper arm and punctured it top and bottom. I was trying my best to pull his head off my arm and he got me two more times before I held his head away from me. My wife came out of the bedroom screaming. I held my dog down on the floor by the back of his collar for about 30 to 40 seconds. I started to release him a little at a time. He did not growl or make any aggressive moves from that point on. I let him go and he went into the kitchen. My wife doctored me up and I cleaned the blood from the carpet. I don't think I can trust him ever again. I will say that since that time, he is a different dog, and I mean that in a good way. He minds better and has a different attitude about everything. It was a week ago today that this happened. 5-12-19. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thanks. Richie.
 

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Complete vet work up. Blood work to test thyroid..check for any pain..if not get a great and experienced trainer. Rage syndrome is not at all common but not unheard of. I know personally of one Rescue GSD that was put down with it. Determined by VERY experienced working dog people. But pain or things like brain tumors can cause drastic changes in dogs. Go to Leerbug.com and read about what a dominant dog vs an aggressive dog is. And about a dominant dog collar. Prayers for you and the dog as I can only imagine how you feel.
 
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Hi everyone, I have a bit of a sad story. I have a 3 year, 4 month old GSD. We got him at 8 weeks old and he has never been without me, I'm retired and stay home every day. I have treated Tian (my GSD'S name) like a son. He was aggressive at 8 weeks old, would bite all the time. We thought over time he would get over that, no so. If he was a human he would already have had a heart attack or nervous breakdown. He stays in the "alert" mode every time we leave the house. If he sees another dog walking on a leash he goes crazy. I started using a pinch collar about a year and a half ago and that has helped. I could eat out of his food dish if I chose to, nothing bothers him in that respect. We play all the time, catch, Frisbee and 4 walks a day. He doesn't like people, and I mean anybody. We socialized him at PetSmart numerous times to no avail.
He has chewed about everything in the house, so we decided to let that run its course and just replace everything afterward.
Here is my problem, and a serious one. I came home the other day saw the carpet in a pile after he chewed it. He was standing next to me so I reached down and slid my hand thru his collar, like I have done many times before, to scold him. I have never hit him and never will. I scold him with words and he understands what I say. He is the most intelligent dog I have ever had. At that moment all **** broke loose, he lifted his lip, growled and attacked me like I've never seen before. Seemed like a mili-second and I was bleeding all over the place. He bit my upper arm and punctured it top and bottom. I was trying my best to pull his head off my arm and he got me two more times before I held his head away from me. My wife came out of the bedroom screaming. I held my dog down on the floor by the back of his collar for about 30 to 40 seconds. I started to release him a little at a time. He did not growl or make any aggressive moves from that point on. I let him go and he went into the kitchen. My wife doctored me up and I cleaned the blood from the carpet. I don't think I can trust him ever again. I will say that since that time, he is a different dog, and I mean that in a good way. He minds better and has a different attitude about everything. It was a week ago today that this happened. 5-12-19. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thanks. Richie.
Post your location and some of the members here should be able to recommend a trainer. Not a petsmart or your local force free trainer, but an actual trainer who knows how to deal with this. @Jax08, lol, usually knows where to find one.
In the meantime I second the vet exam, full work up. Rule out any medical. But the fact that he is being good now speaks volumes.
 

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Post your location and some of the members here should be able to recommend a trainer. Not a petsmart or your local force free trainer, but an actual trainer who knows how to deal with this. lol, usually knows where to find one.
In the meantime I second the vet exam, full work up. Rule out any medical. But the fact that he is being good now speaks volumes.
Sabis mom, thank you for your response. Tian had his complete annual checkup last month, all was normal. Since that happened he has been the perfect buddy that is was previously. I've never been around any dog that stares right thru you with the most intense stare like he does, it's incredible. Live just outside Atl. GA Thanks again. Richie
 

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Complete vet work up. Blood work to test thyroid..check for any pain..if not get a great and experienced trainer. Rage syndrome is not at all common but not unheard of. I know personally of one Rescue GSD that was put down with it. Determined by VERY experienced working dog people. But pain or things like brain tumors can cause drastic changes in dogs. Go to Leerbug.com and read about what a dominant dog vs an aggressive dog is. And about a dominant dog collar. Prayers for you and the dog as I can only imagine how you feel.
Thank you dogbyte, as I mentioned to Sabis mom, my dog had is annual checkup last month and all was OK. Not sure how in depth the checkup was but Tian has been his normal self since. Nobody can approach him, he won't let anyone outside the family near him or us. I will go to Leebug.com. Thanks again. Richie
 

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You have a 3 1/2 yr old dog that has no respect for you! So my advice would be to hire a good, balanced trainer with GSD-specific experience to help you!

From your description of events I'd say this outcome was pretty predictable. Here's why I say that: I have never grabbed my dog's collar to correct or control her ever! I have never held any dog down by their neck, or physically put them on their back ever, nor would I! The fact that you have, and do, speaks volumes about your relationship with your dog.

Chewing up your furniture, barking and being out of control around people or dogs, and being allowed to do so since he was 8 weeks old?! Did you think he'd somehow grow out of that without guidance? Lots of puppies act this way, and they require firm and consistent guidance to learn that this kind of behavior is not acceptable! But physically grabbing and/or holding your dog on his back as a means of communication is also not needed, nor is it productive! You set yourself and your dog, however well intentioned, up for the ultimate confrontation you experienced.

If you want to move forward in a productive way with this dog, hire a good trainer to help you both communicate with each other in a more productive way.
 

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Yeah.... You are fortunate that your dog hasn't had an obstruction. So if you can post your location, maybe someone can help you with a trainer. But be prepared for his entire life to change, starting with crating. Strict rules, no more Doggie Daddy. Strict obedience. Strict rules. Crated when left alone. He doesn't have to like people or other dogs. He does have to respect their right to breathe.

On a side note, 8 week old puppies are not "aggressive". This breed is called landsharks for a reason. It's our responsibility to teach them what they can and can not bite - many MANY threads on this forum on that. And it's our responsibility to teach them that eating our homes is not acceptable. If this is done at a young age then the situation never evolves into a bite to the owner.

So do the medical work up if you feel necessary but I'm on the find a good trainer bandwagon. The fact that you were able to pull his head off of your arm, regardless of the severity of the first bite which sounds like a full bite, tells me he wasn't trying to kill you.
 

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Richie, I sent via private msge the name and phone # of the trainer I used with Woolf. She is in the Gwinnett area and depending on your location in GA, well worth the drive.

Completely agree with with previous posts. Medical exam. Crate training. Muzzle conditioning. High level of OB.

Whichever trainer you do decide to go with; verify their experience. Unfortunately, we have a huge number of less then knowledgeable 'trainers' in GA. You want a balanced trainer, not positive only.
 

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You have a 3 1/2 yr old dog that has no respect for you! So my advice would be to hire a good, balanced trainer with GSD-specific experience to help you!

From your description of events I'd say this outcome was pretty predictable. Here's why I say that: I have never grabbed my dog's collar to correct or control her ever! I have never held any dog down by their neck, or physically put them on their back ever, nor would I! The fact that you have, and do, speaks volumes about your relationship with your dog.

Chewing up your furniture, barking and being out of control around people or dogs, and being allowed to do so since he was 8 weeks old?! Did you think he'd somehow grow out of that without guidance? Lots of puppies act this way, and they require firm and consistent guidance to learn that this kind of behavior is not acceptable! But physically grabbing and/or holding your dog on his back as a means of communication is also not needed, nor is it productive! You set yourself and your dog, however well intentioned, up for the ultimate confrontation you experienced.

If you want to move forward in a productive way with this dog, hire a good trainer to help you both communicate with each other in a more productive way.
Hi Tim, I appreciate your comment. First lets get something straight, you said ""But physically grabbing and/or holding your dog on his back as a means of communication is also not needed, nor is it productive!"" Where did you get that from?? I have NEVER done that to my dog, PERIOD.
I was defending myself from further violence and being bitten more, that is the first time I ever did that!! When I put my hand under my dog's collar every day and talk to him I scratch his neck where the collar rides, and he loves it. I am the most gentle person a dog could ever have. I lay down on the floor with my dog every day and we talk, he follows me everywhere I go. We have what I call " quiet time" I take him in the bedroom and I just flop on the bed and he jumps up next to and we just lay there together for 15 minutes, we do this every morning. I have NEVER mistreated my dog, I treat him like a human. Many times during the day he will come to me and stand there until I put my forehead down against his forehead just rub our heads together.
As far as your other comments about getting a trainer I agree with. Richie
 

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Yeah.... You are fortunate that your dog hasn't had an obstruction. So if you can post your location, maybe someone can help you with a trainer. But be prepared for his entire life to change, starting with crating. Strict rules, no more Doggie Daddy. Strict obedience. Strict rules. Crated when left alone. He doesn't have to like people or other dogs. He does have to respect their right to breathe.

On a side note, 8 week old puppies are not "aggressive". This breed is called landsharks for a reason. It's our responsibility to teach them what they can and can not bite - many MANY threads on this forum on that. And it's our responsibility to teach them that eating our homes is not acceptable. If this is done at a young age then the situation never evolves into a bite to the owner.

So do the medical work up if you feel necessary but I'm on the find a good trainer bandwagon. The fact that you were able to pull his head off of your arm, regardless of the severity of the first bite which sounds like a full bite, tells me he wasn't trying to kill you.
Thanks Jax08, I appreciate your helpful comments. Richie.
 

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Sabis mom, thank you for your response. Tian had his complete annual checkup last month, all was normal. Since that happened he has been the perfect buddy that is was previously. I've never been around any dog that stares right thru you with the most intense stare like he does, it's incredible. Live just outside Atl. GA Thanks again. Richie

My Bud had that intense stare. I used to caution people to watch his eyes, because when they went really still someone was about to get bit.
He was a big, powerful, bull headed beast that responded best to rigid structure, strict obedience and clear rules. We rubbed along just fine for 13 years once I figured all that out. He did not like people in general and as was mentioned he didn't need to, but he absolutely needed to respect their right to live.
My guess is that your guy will come around although you are likely to experience some initial push back. I would definitely start with a muzzle if you haven't already. Crate training needs to happen and I get the sense you are very non confrontational with him, best get over that right about now. No need to pick fights but there is little chance of success here if he thinks he can push you around.
Would love to see some pictures if you can.
 

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My Bud had that intense stare. I used to caution people to watch his eyes, because when they went really still someone was about to get bit.
He was a big, powerful, bull headed beast that responded best to rigid structure, strict obedience and clear rules. We rubbed along just fine for 13 years once I figured all that out. He did not like people in general and as was mentioned he didn't need to, but he absolutely needed to respect their right to live.
My guess is that your guy will come around although you are likely to experience some initial push back. I would definitely start with a muzzle if you haven't already. Crate training needs to happen and I get the sense you are very non confrontational with him, best get over that right about now. No need to pick fights but there is little chance of success here if he thinks he can push you around.
Would love to see some pictures if you can.
Thank you for that great and helpful response Sabis mom. My wife says I have spoiled him too much. I brush him every day and he goes to sleep most of the time. I was not strict enough with him in the past, I know that. I loved him first and then trained him second. He will do whatever I ask of him while we are at home alone. I read a lot about the GSD before and after we got him. Most of what I read was about becoming the ALPHA, leader and so on. I never tried to become that, I just wanted a happy healthy buddy. I'll try and find some pics of just him and not me with him. Thanks again Sabis mom. Richie.
 

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Richie, I sent via private msge the name and phone # of the trainer I used with Woolf. She is in the Gwinnett area and depending on your location in GA, well worth the drive.

Completely agree with with previous posts. Medical exam. Crate training. Muzzle conditioning. High level of OB.

Whichever trainer you do decide to go with; verify their experience. Unfortunately, we have a huge number of less then knowledgeable 'trainers' in GA. You want a balanced trainer, not positive only.
Twyla, I sent you a PM, thanks. Richie
 

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@Richie - I just saw your introduction post and your age. With no disrespect meant and only concern. I would be telling my dad the very same thing I'm telling you.

Please Please Please get a good trainer. This is a young, powerful, male. I think you are very lucky that you were able to overcome him and that he exercised some inhibition by allowing it. I really feel this is a training issue and possibly a dog that has had no rules. Please be realistic about what is best for you and your wife to keep you safe. This could have ended so very badly. I hope Twyla's trainer works out for you.
 

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I agree with people who posted that the dog showed a lot of inhibition here. Had he wanted to hurt you badly, he very well could have. This tells me, without seeing the dog of course, that is it mainly a training issue and not something new or medical.

I do know of a great trainer in North Carolina, if you wanted to make a drive.

But please find and start working with an experienced trainer. As in immediately. He is now a fully mature male dog who will start testing and already has... it isn't too late to turn this around, but it needs to start now.
 

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Most of what I read was about becoming the ALPHA, leader and so on. I never tried to become that, I just wanted a happy healthy buddy. I'll try and find some pics of just him and not me with him. Thanks again Sabis mom. Richie.
The "alpha" thing is bull. The person who did the wolf study and came up with that has long since retracted his theory.

You need to be a leader. You need to be respected. You need to be TRUSTED. Not only to trusted to be fair but also to be a leader. Please make sure the trainer you find is balanced, positive based with fair corrections.
 

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It sounds like a temperament problem more than a training or medical problem, as the dog has been this way from the beginning. Your description sounds like he is a sharp-shy dog who is reactive out of fear and insecurity. The constant destructiveness supports that he is a very anxious dog. "The sharp-shy dog is the epitome of bad temperament. He is easily driven to panic by the unfamiliar... This psychologically unstable animal will, if the occasion arises, bite one of its owners in blind panic without even being aware of having done so." Often this type of dog is put down/euthanized.
 

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@Richie - I just saw your introduction post and your age. With no disrespect meant and only concern. I would be telling my dad the very same thing I'm telling you.

Please Please Please get a good trainer. This is a young, powerful, male. I think you are very lucky that you were able to overcome him and that he exercised some inhibition by allowing it. I really feel this is a training issue and possibly a dog that has had no rules. Please be realistic about what is best for you and your wife to keep you safe. This could have ended so very badly. I hope Twyla's trainer works out for you.
Jax08, I completely understand your comments and greatly appreciate your concern. My dog is 98 lbs and very muscular, he tracks down 30 to 40 Frisbees every day as fast as he can run. I will do research into finding training help. Twyla has suggested a trainer and I will follow up. Thanks once again. Richie.
 

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It sounds like a temperament problem more than a training or medical problem, as the dog has been this way from the beginning. Your description sounds like he is a sharp-shy dog who is reactive out of fear and insecurity. The constant destructiveness supports that he is a very anxious dog. "The sharp-shy dog is the epitome of bad temperament. He is easily driven to panic by the unfamiliar... This psychologically unstable animal will, if the occasion arises, bite one of its owners in blind panic without even being aware of having done so." Often this type of dog is put down/euthanized.
Thanks Chip for your comment. My dog is back to "better" than normal to this point. We rubbed heads this morning and I brushed him until he fell asleep. I think he has been and probably is a fearful dog, when anyone approaches me or my wife the dog's hair stands up on the back of his neck and butt and he growls very aggressively. When I let him out into the fenced back yard he takes off like a jet with his hair standing up, I guess he thinks something might be out there. I have no intention of getting rid of him, I will work thru this. I raised my two previous GSDs back in the 60"s the same way I raised my current dog and they were both perfect loveable dogs. Again, thanks Chip. Richie.
 

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I agree with people who posted that the dog showed a lot of inhibition here. Had he wanted to hurt you badly, he very well could have. This tells me, without seeing the dog of course, that is it mainly a training issue and not something new or medical.

I do know of a great trainer in North Carolina, if you wanted to make a drive.

But please find and start working with an experienced trainer. As in immediately. He is now a fully mature male dog who will start testing and already has... it isn't too late to turn this around, but it needs to start now.
Thanks Saco, I do have a lead on a trainer close by and will get in touch. Richie.
 
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