Aarggggggh! I just spent a whole bunch of time writing you a very detailed reply of some of my thoughts and things I have done to successfully help my dogs when we had issues like yours. BUT---then somehow the dang post disappeared off my screen before I could hit send/post reply!!! Grrrrr hate that.
So, I will try to rewrite it for you, hoping it may help you all. Sounds like stress build up from bringing in the new pup and having everything change in your home due to new pup.
New pups are downright exhausting and can be so annoying to older more mature dogs. Very annoying.
And the new pup changes EVERYTHING, and I mean everything. Schedules change, attention changes, training times for the other dogs change, walks together can change, sleeping/resting arrangements, sleep time changes, owner exhaustion can occur and the dogs sense this....yada yada yada. Obvious right? But so hard to remedy as we are only human and only have so much energy and hours in our day. Dogs thrive on patterns and regularity and consistency...raising a new puppy throws this all of kilter.
Usually all the attention goes to the new pup because it has to, esp in the 1st four months when we gotta really work with them as there brains are forming. So much learning and teaching to get in. Sigh. The original dogs in the family usually get shorted in attention and training, even if we try hard to be fair. It is just that pups need so much dang attention and work to keep them safe and raise them right.
It makes total sense to me that Joey could be getting highly frustrated with young pup Max .For a zillion reasons. Pups have zero boundaries and relentless energy, and hate taking no for an answer. Very annoying to older dogs. Joey is probably thinking "I said no, and NO means NO, now leave me the heck alone!!!"
Whereas young pup Max is probably saying.."Heyyyy big brother, I like you, can you play with me pleeeeeeeze?? I know you said no
, but surely
you don't mean that, right??? Come on, get up lazy bones, join in, lets wrestle!!"
And then because Max is too hyped up nonstop, knows no impulse control yet, can't take no for an answer, won't bugger off, Joey finally has to "get serious" and use aggression to get Max to knock it off. Which then gets Joey kinda in trouble or separated.....
I don't know if this is the case in your home, but I can see how it could be very easily in so many cases. It was starting to happen in my house til I remedied it asap. Puma pup was so annoying to shy Gracie, getting up in her face, bounding into her, jumping on top of her, asking her to play, etc. I had to be very careful and watch them closely at all times together otherwise I knew it could seriously escalate like it is happening in your case.
One time I seriously asked my sig other in frustration---"Why in the world can't Puma pup take no for an answer and read Gracie's body language and back off??" His response? Because she is a PUPPY!!!! And I am the one in the house who is all into dog training and behavior etc!!! But I just didn't get it at the time......
So what are some things you can do to help your situation?
1)I would suggest spending lots of your time on FUN impulse control games
! Use food rewards and praise. Teach leave it, drop it, wait, stay, flirt pole, stay with me (as people pass by) etc.
2)Cut out some of the physical exercise if it is too much and work hard on mental workouts and fun tricks
. This will tire out your dog, esp the smart breeds like yours. I do this nonstop with my dogs. Plus it is fun for you too! This way it will relax you as well, which in turn calms your dogs nicely.
3)Practice "watch the world goes by"
with the puppy (and with the Joey too!)
This is so important for long term training success and life success. I basically take my dog outside to various places and we plop down together and watch the world go by together. She can either lay down near me or sit calmly as we do this. I initially give tons of tiny yummy treats to teach her to chill out next to me, then the reward gets to be that we spend our time together taking in all the sounds,smells, sights, people, birds, etc in our environment. THIS IS MY #1 Recommended thing I do with dogs to get them to have an overall calm, relaxed, polite, confident demeanor.
4) I take my dogs esp Puma pup, to see other animals in pet stores, etc and have her be very, very calm and polite in their presence. She gets highly rewarded (food/praise) for laying quietly and watching the other animals as I talk gently to her about them. This teaches amazing impulse control for her around other animals. Which helps immensely with her around my older dogs, cats and our yard squirrels and the neighborhood deer. etc
This would probably help you with your other pets as well as Max would learn how to be more chill around them! Plus not only is this super fun for me and Puma but she is tired when she gets home from our special "visit the animals" outings!
5) I take Puma to other stores, banks, businesses where pets are allowed. I bring amazing food treats. I train her "service dog" style so when we go out she has very polite, calm, respectful manners. She is heavily rewarded for all good behavior choices when we are out on our fun field trips. She loves it and so do I. She gets to meet people, sniff stuff, investigate new places and smells, etc. But by doing this I get to teach her awesome stuff, especally LOTS of impulse control. When we get home, she is pooped from all the mental stimulation/lessons and she has ZERO energy left to annoy my older dogs and cats.
6) Give your ultra smart, hard working Shepherd breed pup a JOB!!
These types of dogs thrive when you teach them a job. I taught my shy fearful Gracie dog to feed all our pets including the cat that she was terrified of previously. She calls them to each meal with certain barks, and omg she is happiest when she is so proudly doing her JOB! (Gracie is a blue heeler mix)
Heck even my lil chihuahua Sparky is now helping Gracie by making sure the cat actually appears for dinner as Gracie is calling her. So damn cute. Dogs love jobs! I am sure your Max would love a job, too! Gives them confidence and pride.
6)When pup Max is acting crazy hyper, separate the dogs, but give amazing bones or chewy things or bully sticks to older Joey to let him know he is good and valued, and to relieve his stress, and to keep him busy. This is what I did ALOT at my house as we were raising Puma pup.
7) Take time to relax yourself. If only for a moment. Balancing dogs can be so hard and stressful and challenging and exhausting at times. I know. Believe me I know. I love all my dogs, but when we brought in our new pup unexpectedly, our lives completely changed. We went from a very quiet household of 2 dogs, 2 cats, to this plus a pup. Big difference. Huge difference. Being honest here.
But doing the things I wrote above has helped our entire household immensely. Puma is now a bit past a year and everyone is getting along beautifully now. Sure there are occasional grumps and bumps, but nothing like before when she(the puppy) was younger and less well trained and mentally conditioned.
Hang in there, ok? Your dogs love you!
I feel for ya, I get it. It's not easy. Some days I wanted to run away...lol. But then I would miss my dogs too much. Lol. Some times we just have to laugh at all our crap, right?
But---It will get easier as you work with the situation! It did for us, so I have faith that it will for you as well!
All the best to you and your dogs. And cats....