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I’m at a loss with my 7mo old Gs. First off, I have rescued many dogs but never a GS. He is full breed. I have had him for 3 weeks. When I first brought him home he would not get out of the car. I had to carry him in the house. And for the next 3 days I had to pick him up to make him go outside. I had to pick him up to come inside. (This still happens on occasions) I thought he was just shy? He warmed up to me somewhat. He will follow me everywhere I go BUT as soon as I stop at the Refrigerator, stove, sink, bathroom, no matter where I stop he just immediately flops to the floor. He will follow me everywhere, but if I go to sit down he will stop a short distance from me and lay down and no matter how much I call him or try to entice him with things he won’t come. If I go to him, he almost cowers to me but will allow me to pet him and love him for a couple of mins, but will then get up and go lay down away from me and he looks so sad it just kills me. I’ve never had a dog that didn’t want a lot of attention and affection. I am giving my sweet dog every ounce of love I have. Is any of this normal?
 

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Yes, he is scared and doesn’t know you or your home yet. Do you know his history? I searched this forum for two week shutdown threads but could not find the one I wanted. . He should have minimum stress with as little disruption to his life in your home as possible.

This is good in that it explains what the dog might be reacting to, or why it’s not reacting at all.
 

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I am new to Germans so hopefully someone with more experience will have more information. Our puppy was not a rescue but she took time to warm up to us. I remember I would go to pet her and she would get up, walk away, and lay down elsewhere. She is still very independent and will come to us when she wants some pets but mostly she watches us and keeps track of the family.

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Here is another one. Remember you are a stranger to this dog and you need to earn his trust. Don’t worry about him not warming up to you. Even three weeks may not be long enough. The fact that he follows you is a good sign. It’s a beginning. Take it a a win for now and keep working toward a full relationship.

 

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Poor pup! He sounds like he is totally shut down. As suggested, start the two week shutdown.

It can take several months for your dog to show his true temperament. In the meantime, do some research on German Shepherds. Breed matters.

A LOT of dogs don't like or want attention and affection. Most will tolerate a degree of it. A Shepherd's idea of giving you attention and affection is following you around and laying near you. Demonstrative displays of affection are not a breed trait. Not saying that this dog may not blossom into a cuddlebug, just saying don't feel bad if it doesn't happen.

Also, listen to your dog when he moves away from your touch. He is telling you that he is uncomfortable with any further contact. Give him his space. German Shepherds are a highly bonding breed. Many don't want attention from a stranger and right now, that's what you are. Take some time now to think about some fun things that you can do with your dog to start the bonding process.

Shepherds are genetically bred to have a predisposition for aggression. They can be very capable dogs and need effective leadership. Start looking for a balanced trainer to help get you and your dog on track.

And pictures, always post pictures!
 

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Great advice above.
GSD are typically not attention seekers or super cuddly. And they are aloof (not friendly nor aggressive) with strangers.

My older dog loves to be pet or brushed etc. But even he, when he needs space will just move away and lie elsewhere. It's not personal lol
 

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Great advice above. Here's how you implement it. Keep a drag line, leash with no loop on it, attached to him. This is how you will encourage him to go where he needs to, like outside or back inside.

Leave him alone. Provide food and water and take him outside and inside when necessary. Other than that, let him come to you. If he wants to lay in another room, let him.

Don't force yourself on him. You are rewarding his nervous behavior. He is stressed, but loves your attention at the same time. Let him come to you on his terms.
 

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Forcing yourself on the dog can make him start to associate you with stress. That will make bonding and training all the more difficult.
 

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If you have a fenced yard that is dog proofed (no dangerous plants, sharp objects etc) I would try going outside and sitting in a chair. Rather than carry him out if he doesn’t follow you, leave the door open until he does. Take a book with you and just sit there for a while, and let him explore on his own. Your yard is full of smells and things to do that you don’t even realize might interest a dog. Keep an eye on him to make sure he doesn’t eat anything he shouldn’t and see what he does. My dogs love to be outdoors and smell and explore, whether it is in their yard or on an adventure. He probably needs exercise as well, but he should generate that on his own. It’s possible he has been overly restricted either in a shelter or a foster home. You didn’t say where he came from. If he was not allowed to do anything he may be uncertain about what he can do with you. It’s possible he was punished for doing the kinds of things a puppy does naturally. If you are using the leash method, you can get a long line to use outdoors,
 

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Discussion Starter #11
If you have a fenced yard that is dog proofed (no dangerous plants, sharp objects etc) I would try going outside and sitting in a chair. Rather than carry him out if he doesn’t follow you, leave the door open until he does. Take a book with you and just sit there for a while, and let him explore on his own. Your yard is full of smells and things to do that you don’t even realize might interest a dog. Keep an eye on him to make sure he doesn’t eat anything he shouldn’t and see what he does. My dogs love to be outdoors and smell and explore, whether it is in their yard or on an adventure. He probably needs exercise as well, but he should generate that on his own. It’s possible he has been overly restricted either in a shelter or a foster home. You didn’t say where he came from. If he was not allowed to do anything he may be uncertain about what he can do with you. It’s possible he was punished for doing the kinds of things a puppy does naturally. If you are using the leash method, you can get a long line to use outdoors,
Yes, he is scared and doesn’t know you or your home yet. Do you know his history? I searched this forum for two week shutdown threads but could not find the one I wanted. . He should have minimum stress with as little disruption to his life in your home as possible.

This is good in that it explains what the dog might be reacting to, or why it’s not reacting at all.
Thank you! So very very much for taking the time to reply and for the very useful information. I will keep you updated.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Poor pup! He sounds like he is totally shut down. As suggested, start the two week shutdown.

It can take several months for your dog to show his true temperament. In the meantime, do some research on German Shepherds. Breed matters.

A LOT of dogs don't like or want attention and affection. Most will tolerate a degree of it. A Shepherd's idea of giving you attention and affection is following you around and laying near you. Demonstrative displays of affection are not a breed trait. Not saying that this dog may not blossom into a cuddlebug, just saying don't feel bad if it doesn't happen.

Also, listen to your dog when he moves away from your touch. He is telling you that he is uncomfortable with any further contact. Give him his space. German Shepherds are a highly bonding breed. Many don't want attention from a stranger and right now, that's what you are. Take some time now to think about some fun things that you can do with your dog to start the bonding process.

Shepherds are genetically bred to have a predisposition for aggression. They can be very capable dogs and need effective leadership. Start looking for a balanced trainer to help get you and your dog on track.

And pictures, always post pictures!
Thank you so much for replying. Every day he seems to trust me more. I will do anything and everything for this precious baby.
 
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