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My 88lb. 11 month old GSP has been through a lot these passed few weeks and suddenly turned aggressive. I do not believe the aggression is genetic related but perhaps stress related. Last Monday we got him neutered, my Aunt who works for the K-9 unit in Upstate NY told me I neutered him at a weird time bc of his age and hes trying to find himself. I know my dog I can assure you this behavior is very unlike him.

The day after the neutering obviously he was in quite some pain, he also had meds in his ear for an infection that made it difficult for him to hear, & he also had a cone on his head that made it difficult for him to see normally. His pack mate snuck up behind him and my GSP attacked him. (I was told dogs never attack for no reason; but we did not "see" a reason). The owner of the "victim" proceeded the attack by picking up the bullied dog which instantly puts the the other dogs in a "higher power", oh did i mention this other male dog is still intact? Bc of the attack and the stitches in my dog I crated him for a few hours for the next several days.

By Day 3 I decided to take my GSP outside with the other dog they were fine all day. They were playing, running around with eachother, they were drinking out of the same water dish, the rested with eachother it seemed things were back to normal. As soon as the owner of the other dog came home we went inside and my dog out of no where attacked the dog again. He went up to the dog who was by the owner and sniffed him and then attacked. Again the owner picked up the "bullied" dog and my dog went to go back for more! So needless to say the owner now became nervous around my 88lb monster and I had to keep him seperated for the next 5 days.

Bc of the seperation I would take my dog on hikes, long walks, runs, etc..to keep him occupied. As soon as we got home I would have to leash him outside, keep him confined in my bedroom, crated etc..ever since Kreider was a puppy he always roamed freely, even outside, he never ran away from us, he was a very well behaved dog. So I think keeping him couped up had a lot to do with his aggressive behavior. The owner & i decided we cant keep doing this so we held my GSP on a leash and they held their dog on a leash, we let them sniff eachother, & out of no where my dog got in his posture and attacked (worse than ever before) he literally picked the dog up by his ribs and lifted him off of the ground while still on a leash and was not letting go until we unlocked his jaw off of this defenseless dog. We continued to keep them seperated from one another.

1 week after his surgery we had to go back to the vet to get his ear checked on, it was the worst visit to the vet I have ever had with him! He growled at everyone, i had to use my leash as a muzzle. i had to go through a different door to see the doc and he escaped from his collar and luckily enough i was instantly able to grab him. We had to muzzle him once in the vet room and it was just terrible. That same day we took him for a hike in our woods when we came back we had to put him on a lead. Several hours later my friend came to the house and saw Kreider, (we were both sitting with the dog) he started to pet him on his head my dog growled jumped up on him and nipped his face! :mad:

At this point we decided to move out and started contemplating weither to donate him to the State Troopers. Bc of his young age i think we can correct this behavior. When Kreider was younger he always barked at strangers but he would always calm down, at the previous house we had pple come and go every hour he actually started to not bark at a few people, but some pple he just would not give up. Now bc of this odd behavior we are skeptical of introducing him to strangers. What is the proper way of introducing him to them or vise versa?

Now that we moved out he seems much more relaxed his demeanor seems calmer, but he is overly alert. When I got Kreider in July/August I took him everywhere, carnivals, the park, car rides (he knows the word ride & what it means), the lake, he was well socialized. He would play with the neighbors dog, we would have dogs come over. (He is not very familiar with cats :crazy:) He listens to pretty much everything I tell him, he works for his food, he works to go potty (he knows the word potty & knows what it means), he works for ball play. We are currently training him to stay before we enter the house and we go before he does. He is very smart and a very fast learner. He was potty trained the 1st week we had him he had one accident. He knew how to sit/lay/ paw before October rolled around. He knows his leaders, I could pull one of his stitches out and I know he wouldnt bite me (I would never do that trying to make a point). He knows when he is in trouble, he knows when to be affectionate. I just do not understand why he has been "grumpy" towards other dogs (one being his pack mate) & strangers. On walks if we run into other dogs or strangers he starts doing a quiet growl and then starts barking. We correct him, we r going to purchase a different collar to help correct his walking and such, but I just do not know what to do at this point.

How can I get him to be okay with strangers & other dogs? Why would he be acting this way after no where? Can he accept others besides us as leaders? What other options do I have, I do not want to give up on him this early in his life. He has so much more to learn! Any takers? Any advice!:help:

 

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I wonder. I know the testosterone levels do not totally go down for a short period after a neuter. It could be that your dog is totally out of wack.

I guess give him two or three months, while implementing NILIF (Nothing In Life Is Free), take him regularly to classes and train him every day at home. Exercise him as much as he should post-surgery -- not more than they suggest if that is still on.

I guess I understand the first attack, he was in pain, sick from anesthetic, and had the disadvantage of a cone. But after being in the yard together and fine, to come in and attack the other dog, I don't know. Possibly resource guarding, but then he also attacked the owner of the dog. My guess is the hormones are really freaky.

I am sorry you are going through this.
 

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That's a long story! Geez, where to start? There's so much going on here. I'm glad you have the time and the space for the long hikes with him, that's such a bonus. I'd work on his obedience first before worrying about how he gets along with others. Let him recuperate, especially from that ear infection, before making any rash decisions on rehoming him. Good luck!
 

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What meds is he on, that might make a difference too.
 

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Is he on pred. for the ear infection...think there is multiple factors going on, stress from surgery, pain, fear, meds. hearing issue if infection is deep - ear infections are sign of deeper toxicity in the body, could be related to food (high carbs and insulin), if on any HW/flea prevention, were recent vaccines given near time of surgery and/or at same time as HW/flea?
 

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I think after his surgery your dog should have been in a quiet place away from other dogs, until you got clearance from the vet to resume normal activities. Your dog could have had a reaction to medication and/ or pain.

Your dog is also in the adolescent stage, surgery or no surgery, these dogs may act out during this time. Step up the training or find a good trainer and keep him on-leash.
We found a combination of using a prong collar, with lots of positive reinforcement using treats helped us through this stage. Don't let your dog near strangers until he can totally focus on you, which may be awhile, especially if he has lingering health issues.
 

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My 88lb. 11 month old GSP has been through a lot these passed few weeks and suddenly turned aggressive. I do not believe the aggression is genetic related but perhaps stress related. Last Monday we got him neutered, my Aunt who works for the K-9 unit in Upstate NY told me I neutered him at a weird time bc of his age and hes trying to find himself. I know my dog I can assure you this behavior is very unlike him.

Do you mean GSD? German Shepherd Dog or German Shorthaired Pointer?

The day after the neutering obviously he was in quite some pain, he also had meds in his ear for an infection that made it difficult for him to hear, & he also had a cone on his head that made it difficult for him to see normally. His pack mate snuck up behind him and my GSP attacked him. (I was told dogs never attack for no reason; but we did not "see" a reason). The owner of the "victim" proceeded the attack by picking up the bullied dog which instantly puts the the other dogs in a "higher power", oh did i mention this other male dog is still intact? Bc of the attack and the stitches in my dog I crated him for a few hours for the next several days.

IMO, this dog should not have been neutered with an ear infection. I would not put an unhealthy dog under anaesthesia and I would not want his immune system working so hard to recoup. Also, he should have been segregated away. He was obviously in pain when the other dog approached (it has nothing to do with the other dog being intact) and it is possible now he has made the association with other dogs to pain.

By Day 3 I decided to take my GSP outside with the other dog they were fine all day. They were playing, running around with eachother, they were drinking out of the same water dish, the rested with eachother it seemed things were back to normal. As soon as the owner of the other dog came home we went inside and my dog out of no where attacked the dog again. He went up to the dog who was by the owner and sniffed him and then attacked. Again the owner picked up the "bullied" dog and my dog went to go back for more! So needless to say the owner now became nervous around my 88lb monster and I had to keep him seperated for the next 5 days.

Bc of the seperation I would take my dog on hikes, long walks, runs, etc..to keep him occupied. As soon as we got home I would have to leash him outside, keep him confined in my bedroom, crated etc..ever since Kreider was a puppy he always roamed freely, even outside, he never ran away from us, he was a very well behaved dog. So I think keeping him couped up had a lot to do with his aggressive behavior. The owner & i decided we cant keep doing this so we held my GSP on a leash and they held their dog on a leash, we let them sniff eachother, & out of no where my dog got in his posture and attacked (worse than ever before) he literally picked the dog up by his ribs and lifted him off of the ground while still on a leash and was not letting go until we unlocked his jaw off of this defenseless dog. We continued to keep them seperated from one another.

So here, you have a dog who goes into a fight or flight response and since he is leashed with no where to go, he only has one choice.

1 week after his surgery we had to go back to the vet to get his ear checked on, it was the worst visit to the vet I have ever had with him! He growled at everyone, i had to use my leash as a muzzle. i had to go through a different door to see the doc and he escaped from his collar and luckily enough i was instantly able to grab him. We had to muzzle him once in the vet room and it was just terrible. That same day we took him for a hike in our woods when we came back we had to put him on a lead. Several hours later my friend came to the house and saw Kreider, (we were both sitting with the dog) he started to pet him on his head my dog growled jumped up on him and nipped his face! :mad:

At this point we decided to move out and started contemplating weither to donate him to the State Troopers. Bc of his young age i think we can correct this behavior. When Kreider was younger he always barked at strangers but he would always calm down, at the previous house we had pple come and go every hour he actually started to not bark at a few people, but some pple he just would not give up. Now bc of this odd behavior we are skeptical of introducing him to strangers. What is the proper way of introducing him to them or vise versa?

This statement leads me to believe that his aggression was in fact there the whole time, and genetic, and that you missed the warning signs. This dog sounds completely insecure and he does not trust that you, as his handler, will keep him safe. This can be improved upon with conditioning, desensitization and training, but will always be there.

Now that we moved out he seems much more relaxed his demeanor seems calmer, but he is overly alert. When I got Kreider in July/August I took him everywhere, carnivals, the park, car rides (he knows the word ride & what it means), the lake, he was well socialized. He would play with the neighbors dog, we would have dogs come over. (He is not very familiar with cats :crazy:) He listens to pretty much everything I tell him, he works for his food, he works to go potty (he knows the word potty & knows what it means), he works for ball play. We are currently training him to stay before we enter the house and we go before he does. He is very smart and a very fast learner. He was potty trained the 1st week we had him he had one accident. He knew how to sit/lay/ paw before October rolled around. He knows his leaders, I could pull one of his stitches out and I know he wouldnt bite me (I would never do that trying to make a point). He knows when he is in trouble, he knows when to be affectionate. I just do not understand why he has been "grumpy" towards other dogs (one being his pack mate) & strangers. On walks if we run into other dogs or strangers he starts doing a quiet growl and then starts barking. We correct him, we r going to purchase a different collar to help correct his walking and such, but I just do not know what to do at this point.

How can I get him to be okay with strangers & other dogs? Why would he be acting this way after no where? Can he accept others besides us as leaders? What other options do I have, I do not want to give up on him this early in his life. He has so much more to learn! Any takers? Any advice!:help:

You took him everywhere, but were you reading his body language? Was he insecure, did any loud noises scare him? Did you work him through those things? Taking a dog everywhere does not mean he is socialized unless he has become neutral to all of those situations. If the dog is showing uncertainty and fear, you can make it worse by taking him all of these places and not working towards neutrality.

He is not being grumpy, he is being fearful and defensive. You need to start working on desensitization, conditioning and obedience training. I would also recommend agility and/or tug work (NOT bitework) to build confidence one you have gotten control of this situation as is. He needs his confidence built and he needs to learn to trust you. At this time, I would start with muzzling him when out of your house, and work on making him neutral to other dogs and people. He should ignore them, not engage and they should be asked to do the same. He doesn't need to love everyone, he needs to tolerate and respect them. Thats it.

He is very young, and I think with a year's work this could be a very different dog if the work is done correctly.
Sorry, I hope this helps some.
 

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I had my Aunt from the K-9 unit come analyze his reactions. When she pet his head he actually bit her. I explained to her my situation and the behavior he has been performing. When she wasn't touching him and ignored him he was fine. She even said he knows he is wrong when doing this actions bc he instantly goes in the submissive position with tail in legs he knows what he did wasn't right. Kreider is very obedient we do exercises with the mind and physical everyday. He listens to me and does what he is told to do when told to do it. I honestly believe he had a very bad experience at the vet before the surgery. I asked for them to neuter him and I am almost positive they gave him a vasectomy, I did not ask for a vasectomy. He was extremely STRESSED when we got to the vet, she actually made me hide behind the corner so he couldn't see me and they literally fought to bring him to the back room. God only knows what he went through behind doors. I feel he is traumatized, i went to the vet a week after his surgery for a follow up on his ear, he knew exactly where he was, he growled at everyone and everything. he even fought with me on the leash to go inside. he had to be muzzled, ive never had to go through this before his surgery. how can my behaved dog all of a sudden change after a traumatic procedure. It came out of know where! Now the question is how do I fix the issue. I know my dog trusts me, I can do anything with him he won't bite me, I know he won't. He clearly doesn't trust strangers. My aunt brought her retired cop dog to the house and Kreider wanted nothing to do with him, he just sat there as if the other dog wasn't there. I just think this is very UNUSUAL behavior for him. How can I help a distressed dog?
 

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I had my Aunt from the K-9 unit come analyze his reactions. When she pet his head he actually bit her. I explained to her my situation and the behavior he has been performing. When she wasn't touching him and ignored him he was fine. She even said he knows he is wrong when doing this actions bc he instantly goes in the submissive position with tail in legs he knows what he did wasn't right.
This sounds like a defensive response with an insecure response, not so much that he knows he shouldn't do it, but that he didn't WANT to do it in the first place. Putting him in that situation forced him to bite, he lunged out of fear then hit the ground. Again, here is body language was missed. I am CERTAIN he showed his discomfort at being pet on the head by your aunt, she was bit because she ignored them.

Kreider is very obedient we do exercises with the mind and physical everyday. He listens to me and does what he is told to do when told to do it.
If this is true, then couldn't you just go to the vets office and say "sit stay, down stay, stand stay (whichever), "leave it", and have the dog obey?


I honestly believe he had a very bad experience at the vet before the surgery. I asked for them to neuter him and I am almost positive they gave him a vasectomy, I did not ask for a vasectomy. He was extremely STRESSED when we got to the vet, she actually made me hide behind the corner so he couldn't see me and they literally fought to bring him to the back room. God only knows what he went through behind doors. I feel he is traumatized, i went to the vet a week after his surgery for a follow up on his ear, he knew exactly where he was, he growled at everyone and everything. he even fought with me on the leash to go inside. he had to be muzzled, ive never had to go through this before his surgery. how can my behaved dog all of a sudden change after a traumatic procedure. It came out of know where! .
It didn't come out of no where, he was stressed when you brought him to the vet to be neutered BEFORE anything had ever happened (At least that is what I am understanding from "He was extremely STRESSED when we got to the vet, she actually made me hide behind the corner so he couldn't see me and they literally fought to bring him to the back room.")

Does he still have testicles? If so, then they may have done a vasectomy, but its not common. If they took the entire testicle, it was just a straight up neuter.

Now the question is how do I fix the issue. I know my dog trusts me, I can do anything with him he won't bite me, I know he won't. He clearly doesn't trust strangers. My aunt brought her retired cop dog to the house and Kreider wanted nothing to do with him, he just sat there as if the other dog wasn't there. I just think this is very UNUSUAL behavior for him. How can I help a distressed dog?
If he trusted you, there wouldn't be an issue here. He would look to you, not saying he wouldn't be stressed at all, but that he would look to you for the appropriate reaction. He may have remembered that you didn't keep him safe last time you were in that building, so why would you this time. I think you are missing the cues you type in your posts that tell you what this dog has going on upstairs.

My last post still stands. I have found MANY helpful threads on desensitization on Leerburg.com 's webboard. Use the search function here and there, you will find what you need.
 

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Your aunt knows diddly squat unless she has trained, worked, and built a relationship with your dog. Just because she handles K-9 dogs does not mean she trained them or is a dog behaviorist.

No vet would preform a vasectomy unless asked, 50% of them refuse to do vasectomies. A vasectomy is where the dog is sterilized (can not reproduce) but still produces testosterone and all those nice hormones. A neuter is where the testicles are removed meaning no hormones at all.


Find a trainer that has experience with German Shepherds
 

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Kreider has made several strides towards proper behavior. We have been working with strict obedience and have chosen a trainer to work with him. I believe that when he was showing aggressive behavior it was due to several things. Pain, hormones and a lack of obedience led to several undesirable actions. We have made it so Kreider has to warn everything he gets and does. This strict obedience has turne the page for his behavior but we still want a trainer to fully help with his obedience and behavior. I believe that he will do well and I am so eager to have Kreider behave the way he is expected too.


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thats great you are making strides to help him. Lots of training and understanding what is going on with him and with how your handling things will make a huge difference. i am not sure if his actions were due to physical things going on with him or not. just know that now that he has practiced these behaviors you do have to work on it and do alot of training and conditioning. alot of times its a matter of leadership, trust, and corrections for unwanted behaviors. and working with a professional can up your success in dealing with this tremendously. best of luck!
 
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