When Does Socialization Begin
The socialization process for German Shepherd puppies begins the day they are born! An educated breeder will have plan for daily neonatal handling of the litter, and by eight weeks of age, Dr. Ian Dunbar recommends that puppies have been handled by at least 100 people!
You must continue to socialize your puppy after you bring him home. The window for a dogs socialization to people continues until 16 weeks or so. During this time, it is essential that your puppy be carefully introduced to a variety of people, objects and experiences. Its your job to make sure your German Shepherd grows into a reliable, friendly adult dog, instead of a growling, quivering mess.
Do German Shepherds Attach To One Person
German Shepherds will generally attach themselves to one person in the family, but they can still be a good family dog. Although they have their fair share of behavioral issues, these generally stem from a lack of leadership on the part of their pet parents.
Introducing Your German Shepherd To New People
German Shepherds are known for their fierce loyalty to their humans. While this is an incredible quality in a family dog, it can be quite dangerous when this trait is not controlled.
Making sure that your dog is well behaved around new people is one of the most important steps in the socialization process. Some ways to appropriately introduce your Shepherd to new people include:
- Invite family and friends over.
- Get them use to people ringing your doorbell.
- Take them to other houses.
- Take them to public settings.
- Stop and talk to people on your walks with your dog.
- Ask others to interact with your dog on walks .
If there are any specific settings or people you would like them to interact with, make sure to introduce them to your dog as early as possible.
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Belly is good when guest first arrive and greet nicely will go to her place and stay for as long as I place her there is is when a guest goes from one room and reemerges into the same room as her when she begins to bark at them in a aggressive tone. I’m not sure how to stop this behavior I tell her no and have her place again to calm down but them am too nervous to release her with guests still in the house.
Is An Unsocialized German Shepherd A Big Deal
Any time that you have a large and unsocialized dog, the situation can be concerning. An unsocialized dog is often fearful of their surroundings, leading to unpredictable behavior.
A fearful dog can be dangerous on walks, around other dogs, in public settings, and at the veterinarian. You never want to put others in danger by neglecting to adequately socialize your dog.
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Are Some German Shepherds More Likely To Be Too Friendly
This is an interesting question and a subject worth touching on here.
Back in the 18th century when the German Shepherd dog breed was first being developed, there was only one genetic line from which all GSDs were descended.
But today there are no less than three different genetic lines for the modern German Shepherd. This is because the GSD has been developed for different human goals: for show and for work.
There are two show lines, the American GSD and the German GSD. There is one working line, the working European line.
The working GSD lines have retained more of the original breeds aloofness and talent for tracking, herding, guarding, and protecting.
The American line, in particular, is most frequently bred to compete in dog shows and be a family pet.
Breeders that specialize in companion canine GSD breeding are more likely to select breeding pairs based on friendliness than aloofness.
This means that if you have not yet chosen your GSD puppy, and your number one goal is to selectexcellent protection and guard dog for your family, be sure to seek out a breeder that specializes in breeding working GSDs rather than a pet or show GSDs.
Should My German Shepherd Puppy Be Fully Vaccinated Before Socializing In Public
The answer to this question is an unequivocal yes. When searching this topic online you will find several different answers.
Do your puppy and yourself a favor and ignore any advice to the contrary your puppy SHOULD NOT socialize in a public setting until they are fully vaccinated.
Puppies will require three sets of puppy vaccines, spaced 3 weeks apart from each injection. Vaccines work by boosting immunity to infectious diseases in a dogs body.
When you take your puppy out in public before they have received adequate protection from all three vaccines, their body is still at risk for contracting infectious illnesses.
Many puppies that contract the deadly parvovirus, are in fact puppies that were taken in public after receiving just one or two vaccines before their vaccination routine was complete. Infectious disease can be anywhere, and it is never worth the risk.
While you wait for your puppy to be fully vaccinated, you can still engage them in positive socialization experiences. For example, you can:
- Invite other people to your home.
- Take them on car rides.
- Hold them in your arms at pet stores or events, and let other people greet them.
- Take them to the vet for their routine care.
If you begin the vaccination process at 7-8 weeks of age, your pup can be fully vaccinated by 16 weeks. This leaves you plenty of time to adequately socialize your German Shepherd puppy.
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Take Him To Meet Other Dogs
Once your German Shepherd puppy is familiar with human norms, you can focus on intraspecies socializing. Dogs arent born asocial, and puppies of a litter dont fight like grown-up dogs without adequate socialization do.
Thats why setting up playdates is essential. If you have friends who have dogs, even if not of the same age, you can still arrange to visit or have them come over so they can be around each other. If the other dog is senior, make sure he belongs to a smaller breed, as he may not appreciate the energy of a young pup.
German Shepherd Puppy Training Guide
German Shepherd puppy training will be the most fun you have ever had! Now that youve got yourself your very own GSD puppy do not waste any time and start training right away. The sooner you start, the better.
German Shepherd dog puppies are very smart and as they grow they become loyal canine friends. However, it is your job to properly socialize and train them.
If you are reading this it’s because you are: 1- getting ready for your new puppy or 2- already dealing with the joys and pains of owning your very own German Shepherd puppy dog!
Don’t despair, if you are feeling overwhelmed with a fur ball bouncing with infinite energy and don’t know what to do…read along. Here you will find what you MUST do during weeks 8-12 of puppy-hood to prevent behavior problems in the future, as well as training tips to make your life a little easier during this period of time.
You will also find step-by-step tutorials to teach basic commands and start your pooch in his life long learning adventure.
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Dont Forget Sights Sounds And Environments
Along with new people and animals, make sure you introduce sights, sounds, textures, and environments. Seek out a socialization checklist on the internet, and go through it like a scavenger hunt. Here are some ideas:
- Loud noises like vacuum cleaners
- A social environment, like a dog park
- People places, like an outdoor cafe
- Other peoples houses14
Remember, your first priority is to make your puppy feel safe, so you dont want to throw them off the deep end. Think of ways to make the initial encounter less intense for your puppy. Let them sit on your lap and watch the other puppies play at a dog park, for example. Or turn on a vacuum cleaner across the room, but not right next to them.
What All This Means
All this conflicting information can make the answer to are German Shepherds good with other dogs seem confusing.
Studies have found that German Shepherd dogs have scored higher than average for aggression directed towards other dogs. And, that many people view the GSD as an aggressive breed.
But, its important to gather all the information possible when looking at these studies.
Remember that other factors can influence aggression, such as training and socialization as a puppy.
It doesnt mean that German Shepherds will never get along with other dogs. In fact, some may love playing and even living with other dogs.
As long as you go about socializing them and introducing them the right way.
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Determine The Best Reward
All dogs have a reward that they respond best to. Most German Shepherds are food-motivated, so youll find that treats are effective for reinforcing good behavior.
Others, however, prefer to play as a reward. For such GSDs, you might try tossing them a toy or playing a short game of tug whenever they get things right. Other dogs are happy enough with kind praises and an ear scratch.
How To Socialize A German Shepherd Puppy
In this post, Ive included the German Shepherd socialization schedule and checklist at the end of this post that will help guide you through the process of socializing your German Shepherd puppy from newborn to 15 weeks of age.
But first, lets find out why is it so important to socialize your puppy as early as possible.
You can skip straight through the end of this post to get your puppy socialization schedule and checklist if you are in a hurry.
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How To Get Your Pit Bull & Cat To Get Along
German shepherds are intelligent, loyal pooches with strong natural herding instinct and prey drive. These traits can make them somewhat undesirable as a companion to a kitty, whom they might view as worth chasing. But harmony can prevail, particularly if you adopt the shepherd as a puppy and socialize him properly.
What Happens If Your Puppy Is Not Properly Socialized
If your dogs missed that crucial early socialization period, it is possible for them to exhibit some behavioral issues.
They might develop fear and anxiety to new people, dogs, situations and environments.
Since they dont have the coping skills to respond to many different situations appropriately, they might react overly aggressive toward new people, pets, or even your new furniture.
I often see this when visiting the pet groomer. Unsocialized dogs might view a simple grooming process as some kind of torturing mechanism.
Whenever the groomer comes with a brush or comb-devices that might look like torture devices to them-they start to howl, growl or bite, because they are so frightened, its nearly impossible to do even the basic grooming procedures at home.
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Develop A Strong Bond
Training your German Shepherd isnt just about teaching them good manners. It is also very much about developing your relationship with each other.
With every training session, you become more in tune with one another and learn more about how to communicate with each other. The bond you develop with your GSD through training will translate to their affection and loyalty towards you.
Address Bad Behaviors Immediately
Puppies should be disciplined for things they shouldnt be doing. Not only is this undesirable in a pet but also could progress to even worse habits.
Ideally, youd have nipped unwanted behaviors in the bud before your dog gets big and strong enough to cause real damage.
Your dog might also increasingly try to challenge your leadership, so its important that you dont budge.
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Keeping Your Pup From Nipping And Chewing
Puppies have sharp teeth, especially German Shepherd puppies!
Puppies are energetic and must learn their limits for playing too rough . When your dog nips you, say ouch immediately and do your normal noise when something hurts.
Dont immediately jerk your hand back or punish your puppy physically.
Puppies view you jerking your hand back quickly as part of a game and could also tear your skin. And physical punishment should never be given!
The Importance Of Socializing Your Gsd
In general, it is vital that you socialize all breeds. Nevertheless, some of the natural tendencies of German Shepherds make it more important for you to socialize them.
This breed is prone to aloofness and suspicious behavior, particularly when it comes to strangers and unfamiliar environments. If these tendencies go unchecked, you may end up with a German Shepherd who displays aggression at new people, animals, and situations.
Intercede at an early stage, though, and you can ensure that these inclinations dont take root. Instead, you can make certain that your pup ends up being friendly and comfortable in a wide variety of environments.
Furthermore, if you want your German Shepherd to function as an emotional support animal and want to learn how to get an ESA letter, socialization is an important step in the process. After all, you are unlikely to receive any kind of accreditation if you cant guarantee that your dog can function in public. It is only with proper training and exposure that your dog will be able to develop social skills to behave as required.
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Male And Female Behavior
There are behavior differences in 2 year old in German Shepherds.
Male 2 year old German Shepherd behavior may include sexual gestures such as mounting and males may begin to mark on their territory or fight with male dogs as a show of dominance.
Female German Shepherds will enter their first estrus period around two years old. They may begin to escape their yard or dart out the door seeking a mate.
While your dog looks 98% full grown, their behavior is still turbulent and in a transitional phase from a rebellious teenager to a more stable, mature adult.
During this time your German Shepherd may become unpredictable, seemingly uncontrollable, and hard to handle on a daily basis.
Its never too late to train a 2-year-old German Shepherd using the right techniques.
Remember, when training your dog:
- no shouting
- no intimidation with body language or voice
You are looking to gain your dogs respect.
And using any of the negative training ways above will not only cause them to not listen to you but will ruin your loving bond .
Instead, use the following ways to learn how to train a 2-year-old German Shepherd and help them become a happy, trained member of your family.
How To Train A 1 Year Old German Shepherd
Is it too late to train your 1-year-old German Shepherd?
A 1-year-old German Shepherd may still show many puppylike behaviors, but also have behavior you find troubling in other ways.
He might test his independence and show undesirable behaviors, or has never been given proper training to understand how to live in a home.
Its essential to keep training your German Shepherd as it matures to keep its mind sharp and to stay on top of any unwanted behaviors. Youll also need to offer the mental stimulation and structure that it needs to live happily in your family.
These tips are useful for owners that have recently adopted an adult dog, or they can be used to train an older dog that needs to gain new skills.
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Adjusting To Everyday Things
For puppies, everything is new.
Normally, the first time a puppy sees or hears something unusual in your home, it will startle her.
The second time she is exposed to the same thing, she will be curious.
During this process, dont react to the puppys startled or curious behavior. She will become more comfortable in time.
Adult rescue dogs tend to find more things in the home startling than puppies, largely because these dogs often havent had much experience living in a house with a family.
The flush of the toilet, the hum of the vacuum, or the slam of the door could really startle your dog.
For this reason, you need to be prepared to act appropriately when your dog gets caught off guard.
Basically, this is the same method that you would use with a puppy.
If your shepherd is terrified when you turn on the garbage disposal, dont respond to her reaction.
Your dogs reaction is not punishable behaviorits natural. Simply ignore her fearful responses and reward her when she doesnt respond at all.
With thunderstorms, for example, you would play tapes of thunderstorms in the home.
In theory, she will learn over time that nothing happens to her during a thunderstorm, and her fear during an actual storm will decrease.
Every Dog Is Different
In general, the German Shepherd breed is considered to be confident, courageous, kid-friendly, and has a potential for playfulness.
However, every pup is different. This means that there is potential for your German Shepherd to be shy, wary, and even fearful of certain situations. Thus, you should always consider your dogs personality and characteristics when training them. What may work for one dog may not be suitable for another.
If you find that a particular tactic isnt working, dont be afraid to try a different technique. Think about what your dog responds to best and work with that.
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