Common German Shepherd Behavioral Problems And Personality Traits
Over the years working as a dog trainer, Ive probably worked with as many German shepherd dogs as any other breed.
Most often, they are an incredibly loyal breed, are devoted to their owners, and have really sweet and fun personalities. And so, to those of you who love the breed and wouldnt consider anything but a German shepherd in the future, I understand!
Yet, some people are terrified of them and feel they are dangerous dogs to own.
To those of you that are wary of German shepherds, I understand where you are coming from, too! First off, they are very large dogs and can come off very intimidating.
Second, their instinct to protect their family or property is strong and can lead untrained German shepherds to becoming very protective, aggressive, and scary dogs.
The keyword here is untrained, as any untrained dogregardless of breedcan have the same problems.
Over the last decade I really feel like Ive come to understand German shepherds and have personally fallen in love with this breed. Ive also realized that theyre so misunderstood due to poorly trained German shepherds often ending up in the news and how they are portrayed on TV and in the media.
For this reason, I wanted to write todays post in hopes that, if you are someone who fears this breed, are looking for help and direction with your dog, or you know someone who is wary of German shepherds, then this honest truth about this lovely breed might change your mind.
Your German Shepherd Does Not Exhibit Destructive Behavior
Unhappy German Shepherds can be destructive. When stressed and sad they will chew, bite and destroy anything in sight. This should not be confused with your puppys teething stage though when its completely natural or them to want to chew things.
One of the more common reasons for destructive behavior is separation anxiety. Dogs thrive on human company being left home alone can have a huge impact on the way they behave.
If you are out at work, or even away from home for a couple of hours, you might come back to a scene of destruction. This can include barking, digging holes, chewing, tearing, ripping and other bad behavior.
To mitigate this, and to make your German Shepherd love you more, make sure you keep your German Shepherd active and exercised, play with them, and consider how long you might be leaving them home alone.
We bought a Furbo dog camera for when we go out. You can ; they are great for dog separation anxiety and will make your German Shepherd happy.
How Do You Know If A German Shepherd Likes You
Common ways that they will show their love for you will include wagging their tails when you come home, bringing you things, looking to you for direction or making eye contact with you. There are actually many ways that a German Shepherd will show its love for you and I will show you 13 of them below.
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They Cant Help But Kiss Or Lick You
Dogs learn to lick and kiss during puppyhood. Puppies lick their mothers mouths as a signal that they want to get fed. Therefore, they learn early on that licking on the mouth is a way to show they want to be cared for.
As they grow older, kissing also becomes a communication act. Dogs mouths and noses are incredibly sensitive. A few kisses can give them tons of information about you, including where youve been and who youve been with.
While its up to you to set boundaries with your own GSD, know that kissing you only means that they love you and are interested in what youve been doing.
What Is Bad About German Shepherd
German Shepherds, like any large breed, are prone to canine hip dysplasia, a crippling and potentially fatal disease. Good GSD rescuers will also be aware of such problems, and whether the rescued dog youre considering has shown symptoms of or has been treated for any health issues while with the rescue.
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Do German Shepherds Get Arthritis
While all dogs regardless of age or breed can be affected by arthritis, certain factors increase a dog’s risk. Large breeds, such as Labrador retrievers, golden retrievers, and German shepherds, are more prone to arthritis, and obese dogs are more likely to develop it than are their fit counterparts.
Your Gsd Will Follow You
German shepherds are very social dogs and love to have human company as well as canine company. They have a natural ability to develop strong bonds with their owners and as a result, can become glued to their side.GSDs do have a tendency to follow their owners around the house and this is usually a harmless way to stick by your side, make sure you are safe and to have company. But this should be monitored carefully as its also an early sign of separation anxiety, which a serious condition that youll want to avoid. If your German shepherd follows you around, its a clear sign of having a strong bond, just be sure it isnt due to anxiety.
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How Do You Punish A German Shepherd
How to Discipline a German Shepherd Puppy Learn How to Discipline a German Shepherd Puppy the Right Way. Use reward-based training. Ignore jumping when your pup wants attention. Redirect bad German Shepherd puppy behavior. Use time-outs appropriately. Ignore the unnecessary barking. Keeping your pup from nipping and chewing.More items
Do German Shepherds Have A Favorite Person
Although German Shepherds cant have two masters, they will often choose a favorite person to do certain activities with. So sometimes, a dogs favorite person is;not always their master.
A German Shepherd will bond with each member of the family in different ways.
Ive described how a German Shepherd will follow their master everywhere, even to the bathroom! But sometimes even their master just isnt good enough! Let me explain.
Even though Im not the true master in my German Shepherds world, every evening she chooses me to have her last playtime with! She will also only allow me to give her her favorite bedtime biscuits!
Without fail, when she is ready to play, usually around 8pm, she will sit down in front of me and stare. She will continue this behavior which escalates to a bark if I tease her and ignore her for a few seconds, until I start to play one of her favorite games with her, such as tug-o-war.
I like to think that in her own little way, she does have two masters, but I know my partner will always be her overall favorite.
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How Do You Discipline A German Shepherd For Biting
Tug-o-WarChoose a tug toy appropriate for your puppys age.Make the toy as interesting as possible by moving it around with quick movements.Let your pup grab one end of the toy and pull.Allow your pup to pull for a few seconds and then reveal a treat.As soon as your pup drops her end of the toy click and reward.More itemsFeb 12, 2021
Provide Plenty Of Positive Reinforcement
Dont be tempted to skimp on the treats and rewards. Start with plenty of high-value treats, such as bits of hot dog, cooked chicken, or cheese.
Use these when youre training the dog to stay on the bed, and theyll associate these tasty benefits with the behavior youre trying to encourage.
Apprehensive about training a dog to stay in its own space? Check out this handy YouTube tutorial, which takes a great deal of the guesswork out of the process. It even includes tips on finding the perfect bed.
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How To Get Your German Shepherd To Stop Walking In Front Of You
Below, Ill mention two ways of getting your German Shepherd to stop walking in front of you depending on whether it does it on a walk or at home.
Use positive reinforcement training to get it to stop walking ahead on the leash
Positive reinforcement training is where you reward the behaviors that you want to see from your German Shepherd.
To use positive reinforcement training to get your German Shepherd to stop walking ahead of you on the leash you would do as follows:
- Start walking it on the leash with some treats
- Stop when it is about to walk ahead of you and get it to pay attention to you
- Reward it for stopping and paying attention to you then carry on walking
- Repeat the above until it stops walking ahead of you
You can watch the video below to see how it is done
Use positive reinforcement training to stop it walking in front of you at home
To use positive reinforcement training to get your German Shepherd to stop walking in front of you at home you would:
- Avoid giving it attention when it walks in front of you
- Get it to pay attention to you when it is about to walk in front of you, reward it and then walk ahead of it
- Reward it when it does not walk ahead of you when it normally would
You can also give it lots of attention and exercise throughout the day.
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Do Dogs Understand When You Kiss Them
When you kiss your dog, you may notice signs that indicate they know that the kiss is a gesture of affection. As puppies, this is not something that dogs would recognize, although they would feel you doing it. Of course, dogs dont know what kisses actually are, but they learn to realize that they are good.
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How Do You Assert Dominance Over A German Shepherd
How to Handle a Dominant German Shepherd?Start training your dog when it is just a few weeks old.Leash train your dog and make it walk by your side instead of pulling on the leash.Use the verbal command like Stop, No, Stay, etc. to tell your dog that this behavior is not appropriate.More itemsJan 16, 2015
Increase The Bond With Your German Shepherd
Basically, when you love your German Shepherd in the ways below, watch their reactions. If they seem uncomfortable, look away, step back, or give you another sign they dont like your love, then continue on in the list.
- Watch their behavior for signs of reciprocal affection; meaning they like what youre doing
- Stop at anytime your GSD seems upset or uncomfortable
Keep working through the different German Shepherd love steps to find one that works for you and your GSD.
Are you looking to bond with your German Shepherd?
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Look Your German Shepherd Dog Directly In The Eyes
Takeumi Kikusui ; after his experiment and research found that dogs used their eyes to win the hearts of humans thousands of years ago and they do so today. Big philosophers say that the eyes are a window for looking at the soul of a person. When you look in the eyes of your Dog it will trigger an oxytocin hormone in his Brain. Kikusui says that dogs very cleverly use this system to bond with his or her child. Studies say that when an owner and a Dog spend more than five minutes together they release more oxytocin hormones. While you are looking at your Dogs eyes try to give him a treat so he can understand your love.
How Do You Tell If Your German Shepherd Loves You
1) They cant help but kiss or lick you. Dogs learn to lick and kiss during puppyhood. 2) They like staying close to you. 3) They often snuggle or cuddle. 4) They lean on you. 5) They allow you to hug them. 6) They ask for rubs. 7) Theyre always happy to see you. 8) They keep wanting to play.
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Your German Shepherd Sticks Their Tongue Out
Whilst there is a condition called hanging tongue which can result from neurological and structural defects, a little tongue poking out can signal happiness.
You might notice it when your German Shepherd is asleep. The tongue poking out means that are completely relaxed and in a happy state.
The next time your German Shepherds tongue stick out, it could be a sign they are totally relaxed, content and happy with life.
Where Do You Kick A Dog That Attacks You
Trying to pull away will only increase the severity of your injury. If the dog has hold of you with his mouth, its other body parts are vulnerable. You may have to use excessive force: punch the dog in the throat, make a jab to its eyes with your thumbs, or deliver a hard kick to its legs, ribs, or backside.
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Your German Shepherd Follows You Like A Shadow
When you have earned the trust of your German Shepherd, you will soon notice that they follow everywhere, from room to room, and even if you shift on the couch.
As I mentioned earlier, German Shepherds can suffer with separation anxiety, so keeping close and following you around makes them feel secure. German Shepherds love to follow their owners; its one way for a German Shepherd to show it loves you.
New German Shepherds soon become very attached to their owners and will fall in love with you quickly providing you give them security they need.
German Shepherd Training: The 7 Golden Rules & Basic Commands
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Im sure youll agree when I say:
A well-trained dog is a pleasure to have around.
If you own an untrained pooch you know the frustration it causes.
Whether youve just brought home your first German Shepherd.
Or if youve finally decided its time to teach your old dog new tricks
Youve come to the right place to get the 101 on German Shepherd training.
It is a fact that German Shepherds are among the brightest and most intelligent working dogs.
Preceded only by the Border Collie and the Standard Poodle.
This is according to a book published by Stanley Coren in 1994 The Intelligence of Dogs.
You can read more about his study and the metrics here.
Thanks to their ability to understand new commands in less than 5 repetitions and obeying the first command 95% of the time or more.
And the desire to please you; most owners can succeed at training their dog on their own.
Because of their intelligence, German Shepherds can sometimes be stubborn. They need a firm hand and a smart approach to their training.
Training your German Shepherd is exciting. But sometimes dog training can seem overwhelming if you don’t even know where to begin.
So heres the deal:
Youve got to get inside your German shepherds head
And Im about to show you exactly how you can do this:
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They Want You To Pet Them
Its true that dogs hate tight hugs. But it doesnt mean they hate other forms of physical affection.
Being petted is an example of that. They would get any chance for their owners to give them belly rubs. They also love getting ear scratches.;
Sometimes they would let you know they want to be petted. They do that by putting their paws on your arm or legs.
In addition to that, some German Shepherds love snuggles. There are German Shepherds that appreciate loose hugs.
Note:;Give your pooch gentle pets. Dont put them in situations where they feel they are smothered or cant escape.
They Put Themselves In Vulnerable Positions
You wouldnt do things if youre not comfortable with the people around you.
Its the same with German Shepherds.
If they put themselves in vulnerable positions, its a sign that they love you. And they trust you.;
They could be silly around you because they feel safe.
Thats why they can rest and lie with their backs on you. Or they lie on their backs when they ask for belly rubs.
But the most vulnerable would be when they pee or poop in front of you.
Note:;Any dog wouldnt do those things if they know theyre in danger.
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Theyre Always Happy To See You
Most dogs youve formed a bond with will show excitement when seeing you after a while of being apart. German Shepherds are especially known for this.
They may jump up at you, lick your face, and run around aimlessly at your presence. They may even whine from their inability to contain their excitement. No matter the temperament of your GSD, theyll surely have their own way of telling you how happy they are to see you, even if youve only been away for a few minutes.
Learn To Move The Eyebrows And Understand Your Dogs Facial Expressions
You should pay more attention to your Dogs Facial movements because they can tell you how is your dog feeling.
- Is he happy to see you?
- Is he disappointed
- Is he hungry
- Is he sad?
Experts used high-quality cameras to see the facial expressions of dogs when they meet their owner and when they meet a stranger. They found that a dogs facial movements are directly related to their emotions.
They found that a dog moves his left eyebrow when he sees its owner but was not the same when they saw a stranger.
We, humans, are very efficient to explain by facial expressions our sensations and so the dogs have learned the same thing. When a German Shepherd Dog sees you He is telling you that he is very happy to see you.
Researchers say that animals with eyebrows are more social friendly than who do not have them. Foxes do not have eyebrows and they like to live alone.
Dogs have proved over the years that there is no better loyal companion like them.
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