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Hi,
My girlfriend and I rescued gs from an abusive family about 9 months ago. At first he was aggressive towards other people and dogs. Now he is still somewhat protective until we let him know its pok and he/she is a good guy. He still is very aggressive towards other dogs. I want to break him from that and also from being very skiddish. Also he has something wrong with his skin it is drying out and he is losing his hair.It looks bad but we have changed his shampoo and food. Thanks in advanced for your help.
 

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Usually the best thing for skin is good food, the expensive grain-free variety. There are also additives you can get at a pet store. Brushing regularly is important too. If you were able to reduce his skittishness with people you may have good luck with dogs too. Usually the solution to that is a lot of exposure with close supervision until other dogs are no big deal to him. By the way, has he been neutered? If not, that would help but not necessarily end the dog aggression. Of course, this is only one person's opinion but those things worked for me (my dog).
 

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Welcome and thank you for for taking in this poor boy. First have you had him looked at by a vet for the skin? If yes and no real problems then make sure you feed a high quality grain free food. Also salmon oil added to the food helps greatly with dry skin. Oatmeal bath helps if he has itching but do not bath to much.

Next for the aggression, seek a professional trainer to help you. They can do wonders and you will learn allot. It will take time and patience to bring him around. Sounds like your already off to a great start. And we love to see pictures by the way!
 

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He needs to see a vet for the skin problem. Even on a crappy diet, most dogs don't have their fur fall out like you're describing.

Could be a number of things - allergy (environmental, diet, flea, etc), mange, etc
 

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Good advice so far- I'd take him to the vet and have him checked. What food are you giving him? Thanks for taking him in and giving him a loving home.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks alot I will get pictures on here shortly. I have been feeding him ol roy dog food its what I have always feed my other dogs, if you have another suggestion feel free to let me know. This is my first GS and I am in Law Enforcement hoping to get him in tip top shape, so I can take him to work with me.
 

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A dog like that will never be suitable for protection work- he can be rehabilitated to some degree, but will never have the confidence to be a police dog. Reactivity is not a trait you want to bring into the field for your professional safety and his:)
 

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Well Old Roy is about the worst food you can feed- mostly cereal and your dog must have an allergy to grain. Switch to a higher quality food- something like Taste of The Wild, 4Health, Blue Buffalo, Wellness... all brands you can get at Tractor Supply. Anything, literally anything, is better than Old Roy. Don't buy a food from the grocery or Walmart, go to a PetsMart or Tractor Supply. Try Diamond Lamb and Rice. Costco sells Kirkland which isn't bad. You should try a grain- free food, sounds like grain allergies are causing the hair loss. What you're feeding now is like feeding corn flakes to a dog who's allergic to corn. A raw egg on top of the dry would help too.
 

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I agree with everyone else...switch him to a grain free food and give him the salmon oil. And taking him to the vet (if you haven't already) would be a good idea too.

Good luck!
 

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Any dog with aggression issues should have a thyroid panel run. It should contain a free T4, free T3, and most importantly the TgAA (thyroglobulin antibodies). Most vets aren't good at dealing with behaviour and thyroid issues, so you will have to be insistent. There is also skin issues, which could be related.

GSDs can have a variety of digestive issues, so expect to pay for some better food in order to get him stable - it will pay off in the long run.

Depending on whay type of LE you do, it is possible that your GSD might someday accompany you to work, but it is highly unlikely that he will be a working K9 in the traditional sense.
 
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