German Shepherd Dog > A Behavior Problem with Prince.. (70 replies)
by VKGSDs on 02 June 2012 - 19:57
|Nipping, biting... if my dog intentionally puts his teeth on someone in my house then we've got a problem and it's my responsibility to address it... barging, growling, lunging, barking (copying the words the OP used) doesn't sound like herding to me, at least my dogs have never done that while actually herding and if they did they'd be "retired" right then and there!|
If this happened to me I'd take Barb's approach (and agree that my dogs would be toast if they repeatedly pulled crap like this in my house), but I know my dogs and know how and when to correct them to make the point clear without nagging or escalating. I'm hesitant to suggest that here just because I've seen dogs who've had too much freedom come back at their owner when the owner finally steps up. It's an option but just don't go trying stuff you aren't comfortable with because 1) we can't predict the result as armchair trainers and 2) if you're not really confident and commited to getting the point across to the dog, you probably won't.
by Ninja181 on 02 June 2012 - 20:05
|When herding an animal that WON'T go in the direction the dog wants, they will eventually nip them right in the ass. Have personally witnessed it many times. And every time it delivered instant results. Problem solved.|
by Red Sable on 02 June 2012 - 20:08
|It doesn't sound like herding behaviour to me either, it sounds like aggression. I agree with Slam (where is he lately anyway) and Kelly weighing in on this. Kelly knows this dog.|
Personally, I love Prince and would take him in a heartbeat. Fiesty booger that he is.
by VKGSDs on 02 June 2012 - 20:11
|I guess I'll just agree to disagree. My dogs better know the differnce between dealing with a flock of sheep and letting my own husband out the door without throwing themselves at him or the door barking and growling. I've never seen such a thing and a lot of my dog friends own herding breeds and herd either because they actually live on a farm or herd for titles/competitively and I've never been nipped in the ass trying to leave their homes. To me all the "nip" shows is bite inhibition (good!) not herding.|
by beetree on 02 June 2012 - 21:24
|That is the interesting thing about dynamics! This is Rugers1 dog, and her husband has let her and the dog know it! Therefore, he's lower on the totem pole, because in the dogs eyes, he is below Ruger!|
by Jenni78 on 02 June 2012 - 21:41
|Good grief, things sure can get complicated.|
It's unacceptable. Therefore, it must be stopped. If a dog doesn't have the good sense to act appropriately, then the human must. Lots of internet input and furious typing over a simple problem that this dog has had since day 1. Time to take charge, Deanna. You don't have all these different problems with Prince; you have ONE big problem with him; you continually underreact to his behavior. Now he's bitten your husband (I agree that it may be rooted in herding behavior, but seriously...if the dog can't tell a person from a sheep, then the owner needs to be smarter than the dog and eliminate any opportunity for the behavior to take place) and something tells me that if he bruised someone else's ass (like a delivery person, daughter's friends, etc.), there would be more consequences than what your husband dished out. You could wind up in court over that. It is YOUR responsibility to keep Prince from getting himself in trouble. We can't all fix your problems with Prince via the internet when your lack of corrections/discipline ARE the problem and continue to be such by refusing (by your own admission) to correct him in an effective manner thinking you're being "nice." Being "nice" is great until your dog gets killed or you lose your house over it.
Sorry to sound like Queen Bitch (comes naturally, can't help it, LOL ), but honestly, this is the SAME problem you always have with Prince and I am so tired of dogs getting in trouble because their owners are afraid to correct them. Correcting them is far nicer than what often happens to them when allowed to run wild in the hands of an inexperienced or unwilling handler.
Crawling back under my rock now........................
by aceofspades on 02 June 2012 - 21:49
|I agree Jenni. Some dogs just arent the clicker and cookie type. Prince needs strong correcting and I think an E collar or prong collar might not be a bad idea despite me not having much experience with them at all. If Deanna is not strong enough to dole out a firm enough negative correction herself he needs to find a correction that IS effective or the behaviour will continue to escalate and Prince will end up with a rescue or put down. If you go the e or prong collar route find someone to teach you how to correctly and effectively use it. Nothing like the blind leading the blind.|
by Ninja181 on 02 June 2012 - 21:54
|The dog sees himself as HIGHER in the pack than her husband. That leads to problems like this. Problem #1|
The fact that it has gone on for six months and now escalated into a nip. Problem #2
Now is the time to get some professional help to stop it, before it gets worse.
by beetree on 02 June 2012 - 22:27
|NO to the ecollar. Yes to Ruger stepping up. Bite the bullet, it will work, and you and your dog will be happier for it. YOU in CONTROL, that is what your dog WANTS. If you don't do it... guess who will?|
Not that I have, answers, only an attitude.
by RLHAR on 02 June 2012 - 22:30
|Having followed Deanna's issues with Prince from the start, I agree with the people saying it is time for Deanna and Prince to reconnect with the professional that assisted them the first time.|
There needs to be a hands on professional, evaluating Prince's behavior and Deanna's ability to correct him. I would be concerned that if Deanna isn't taught how to deliver an appropriate correction, the misuse of a prong collar or an e-collar could result in Prince's aggression escalating, rather than detouring the behavior.
by 1GSD1 on 02 June 2012 - 22:48
|Absolutely agree and when I said neuter, that didn't mean continue allowing him to do what he is doing and hope that is the cure all. Maybe he will be easier to handle and work with on this and other issues or maybe not but I saw a change in the male I mentioned. Also since you brought up the potential health issue and I apologize don't know what the outcome was but I thought neutered dogs were less at risk so that was another reason it was suggested. |
Set him up where he won't be in the position to be able to do what he is doing, put him outside, crate him whatever needs to be done and if he were mine, he'd never ever be loose in the house with anyone other than immediate family. It's obvious that you love him and there is certainly nothing wrong with that. Wish you luck.
by Ruger1 on 03 June 2012 - 00:38
|Thank you all for the comments and yes, I have/ will talk with Jim and Kelly. I just wanted to throw it out to see what folks here had to say too...|
Lots of different opinions and thoughts. I am considereing every post...
I think this bullish behavior is consistant with Prince's natual tendency to have a hot temper when things are not going his way. He gets pi**ed off when we...
walk out the door,
walk away from the car,
go near the horses,
talk to the cats,
don't even think of having anyone come in the yard,
or into the house,
or leave the house.
Don't mow or ride four wheelers,
Don't pull away from the house when he is in his outdoor pen,
and whatever you do;
DON"T step on his foot..
Now that it is in black and white
I am thoroughly ashamed and know that I still have big problems. If I could get that damn correction down in timing and strength I know that I can correct these problems. I have to tighten the pronged collar and bring it across my body in a motion that is slightly forward and give it all I have..It must be administered just a wee second before he actually intiates the behavior. The little window of time between him thinking about the behavior and actually doing the behavior...It is much harder then it sounds,,Does anyone else have this problem??..Anyone??..I feel isolated and alone in this,,.. I swear his neck must be made of bricks...
Why is this so hard to do..maybe like Chaz said it's because he is such a cuddly wuddly little bear,,seriously all joking aside...
As a side note. I have tried to avoid these issues by simply putting Prince in a down stay..He is not reliable .If he does stays he cries like someone is killing him...and then inches his way out of his down and the tug of war is on,,,
by Pirates Lair on 03 June 2012 - 00:52
|Bhaugh said- I would put a leash and prong collar on him and make an immediate correction as soon as the person(s) started for the door.|
And that is the answer, although you probably do not require a prong collar.
Set the dog up, and when he moves- a swift hard pop of the leash and say "Leave it"
Keep repeating it until he understands he can't get away with this. The behaviour is always going to be there now, (did not happen overnight) but it can be controlled.
by Eldee on 03 June 2012 - 02:46
|For those of us who are older and just don't have the strength to pull back hard enough on a prong collar to make a difference, I don't get what is so wrong with an e collar. Ultimately, I am sure the correction is the same to the dog. A small e shock on its neck or a yank with a prong collar. My girl weighs 75 pounds and to yank on her prong collar hurts my shoulder. I am seriously thinking about this e collar for her horse chasing and lawn tractor chasing. I love her dearly and don't want her killed by my horse. I seriously think you should step up and not allow any nipping or aggressive behaviour whatsoever. Not allowed. When a westie nips, or a cockapoo nips bad yes, deadly, no. But when a large breed born to guard dog nips aggressively, that can only lead to a bad place. One correction with an e collar, the entire situation changes. All of a sudden dog thinks, holy crap, what was that. You have their attention no matter where you are in the pack. Packs don't matter with an e collar. Sometimes a behaviour can be so bad that you don't have the time to play the pack game with them. You have to stop that behaviour period anyway you can. I don't think it can turn them more aggressive if it is used correctly. I have seen it with my friends dog. Much more submissive dog now. Sorry, that is how i feel. These collars have a place in training especially aggressivness. I swear if I was ever going out a door and a german shepherd lunged at me and bit my ass, I would pee my pants in fear.|
by watsongsd on 03 June 2012 - 03:26
|I'm no dog trainer, but you say that he starts easing out of his down stay and then the "tug of war is on". I think that is the easiest time to correct him. The minute he thinks it's okay to disobey you by getting out of his down stay. |
I think your husband has done an experiment for you already. He corrected prince enough that the dog remembered and changed his behabiour. Has this had any negative effect on Prince? I don't know how relevant this is but maybe that correction intensity is where you need to be.
I like the idea of not being behind Prince, I didn't think of the protection being the moyivation for his actions but maybe that's a part of it or maybe you being behind him and holding his leash just makes him more confident. I think the crate is the way to go.
I would get him as tired as you can with reasonable exercise like having him swim to retrieve a ball or running him then I would have your husband leave the house whil Prince is in his crate. Maybe you'd be better off working on the least stimulating situation for him from that list first.
I'm no dog trainer but when I have an issue with my dogs I do the Ceasar Milan thing. If they are out of hand they end up in a down on their sides, not their stomach, and they have to watch what ever got them going happen again a couple times until they can be calm while it happens. If it's a problem between two dogs getting too rough they all end up in a down on their sides until everyone stops trying to stand or flip to their stomach, even if I end up massaging them while they lay there. One by one they all calm down and if not I use a little poke on the neck to correct.
I hope others correct me if this is wrong but I just wanted to show how strong the long down can be. Just letting your dog know that if I say you have to stay there, you better stay there and not complain. (i do notice that you never want another dog to walk up to the one you have in a long down. they must all do the down together if they are all out at the same time)
Also, you say he whines like someone is killing him... I don't really care when my shepherd whines, i think they all do it and to me it's more about confusion or frustration. If you are doing what you think is right in that moment then changing it because he is whining only teaches him that whining will make things go his way.
by Felloffher on 03 June 2012 - 05:35
I think this bullish behavior is consistant with Prince's natual tendency to have a hot temper when things are not going his way. He gets pi**ed off when we...
by workingdogz on 03 June 2012 - 10:14
|I agree with Felloffher, this problem goes|
much deeper than the dog just bumrushing
You might want to get some skilled help with
this dog again, *and* this time keep up with
Or, the alternative is to continue to let the dog
rule your life & home.
If you don't stop ALL this nonsense with this
dog and soon, you will end up in court.
He will hurt someone.
Take a very good long hard look around at
everything you own, every last item you
have worked hard to purchase, because
if you don't get this dog's shit together and
SOON, you will be kissing all your worldly
goods, and any future ones you may be
thinking of buying GOODBYE.
No more internet advice from people, it's pretty
obvious you are in over your head with this dog.
Did I mention, you should seek out good some
very good professional help. NOW.
And stop looking at your dog thinking he is
'cuddly wuddly', he is a damn dog with teeth,
and he is obviously NOT afraid to use them on
a human. Not sure why you are so afraid to hurt
his feelings-he damn sure won't worry about
hurting YOU, or anyone else.
by Eldee on 03 June 2012 - 12:29
by Jenni78 on 03 June 2012 - 13:07
|I guess everyone else agrees with Queen Bitch. Here I thought I was maybe coming on a bit strong. I just see impending doom when I read about Deanna's and Prince's relationship. Glad I'm not alone. |
For whoever asked about the ecollar, my opinion is that it's not the ecollar itself that people are discouraging- it's the use of one by someone who doesn't know how to properly correct their dog with a plain old collar. If you don't have the basics perfected, as far as timing and intensity, you can make a big mess of things with an ecollar. The fact that they are afraid of consequences of stepping on his foot speaks volumes about the relationship and an ineffective correction that caused him any discomfort and "pissed him off" as Deanna says, could very well be a catastrophe. FWIW, I cannot even fathom living with a dog who I was in fear of stepping on accidentally. The proper reaction for a dog who has been accidentally stepped on is to move his foot. This all boils down to a complete lack of respect. She really only has one problem with this dog. Too bad that one problem is what the entire relationship is based on.
I am not too concerned with rank so long as there is respect. I think it's pretty hard to analyze what, exactly, the dog's idea is of where he/she fits in, so I wouldn't waste a lot of time on it. There are dogs who are very dominant in this regard and will continually test you. It's not a problem with proper handling. With proper handling comes respect, regardless of the dog's inherent temperament. I don't think my relationship with Caleb could have been much better, but I'm not sure he ever thought that he was "below" me so to speak and in his youth (and mine!) there were definitely some rocky patches where I was afraid he might get into trouble. Nothing like you're describing- these were instances where a bite wouldn't necessarily have been "inappropriate" but certainly unnecessary and frowned upon in public, lol. I'm only using the example because it's a good example of smaller woman/big strong dog (I only outweighed Caleb by about 10lbs and I certainly am not stronger!) and the fact that you have to control them differently than a man- your presence alone isn't going to intimidate Prince into submission. Add that to the fact that he's already tried you and won, and you've got a real uphill climb ahead of you. Anyway, there was a respect there, though, a bond, and we got along as old friends., I never worried what he would do in any given situation; he would do the right thing, every time. I certainly was never nervous about my son stepping on his foot or tripping over him or God forbid, hanging out with my horses. I corrected the behavior in an appropriate manner, letting him know that I acknowledged his ideas and they simply were not what was on the agenda for the day, lol, and there was to be no further discussion about it. I NEVER got into a physical battle of any kind, certainly not a tug-o-war as you describe.
You have to be in charge mentally. Fighting him is like telling him that he has a chance to be in charge- he just has to win the fight. Mark my words, he will win the fight. He's already proven that. Respect has to be earned. Be fair, don't get frustrated, be quick in your corrections (ie, he moves one inch in a down stay and he gets a correction) and CONSISTENT. If you waver just once in 20 or 25 times, he will continue. It only takes once for a dog to make note of that inconsistency.
Deanna, you have to be smarter than Prince. He is manipulating you and calling all the shots in your life. You may be used to it as it's happened over time, but to someone else looking in, not to hurt your feelings, but it looks absolutely ridiculous. He decides what you can and can't do and when you can and can't do it and with whom??? Did he miss the memo that he's your DOG???
I wish you the best of luck, Deanna, and again, I'm sorry if I sound too harsh, but this is serious if you want to keep Prince and keep others safe.
by Nans gsd on 03 June 2012 - 17:09
|Under professional supervison with you, Prince and the e-collar, I would go that route. This dog will probably ALWAYS need a larger than DEanna correction and you can learn the timing precisely and effectively to make every correction count, not by just nagging on his neck with a jerk. You are not always going to have this dog in a correctable leash and collar, but you can have him wear the e-collar, full time for now and you will always have to have the control with you, but believe me, he will understand immediately that you are in charge, and that little knick of a correction does NOT hurt him; just teaches him respect and NEVER bite a family member or friend again. |
You start with conditioning him with the collar, wear the dummy collar for l-2 weeks so he gets used to it first. I have used it for about 15 years or so and have never had a dogs aggression get worse, in fact quite the opposite, I have broken up a couple of dog fights with it and thank god I had it as fights could have escalated in a person getting hurt not just dogs so thankfully I have used this tool successfully. My Rotti wore his collar except when he went to bed at night; my german boy did the same when out in public as he did not like kids and I wanted him to KNOW I had his back at all times and he was not able to act on his aggression unless he was told to. I found this tool invaluable for me and YES it does help to save the neck, upper back and shoulders of the handler. Thank god.
Every time I had any type of problem with either my Rottweiler or my GSD, first or second time, I called my trainer in for help as I learned the hard way as time goes by they do pick up bad habits right before your eyes; and also these dogs need mental stimulation as much as they need physical exercise, it does really help keep them out of trouble.
Best of luck with him, he looks A LOT like my boy. Very handsome and very, very intelligent. I know you can get this solved but it does take time and it is very important to bring in the professional(s). Nan