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Discussion Starter #1
Hi everyone,

This will be a bit of a long read but in short: I have a small terrier mix rescue (past 7 owners, never been trained, been hit, locked up and in a car crash) and a GSD (1 previous owner, got locked up and crash as well by ex partner), the GSD has recently decided to hump dogs and tends to growl and try and hold onto them when they don't like it and my little one barks like crazy at every dog she sees.

Here the background. I am in training with both dogs for 1.5 years now and they have improved greatly. Both are great with children and humans, my barky terrier even loves our neighbours cat and my shepherd is just a dopey ball loving dog. But here is the thing. I am a bit of an emotional/sensitive person and love my dogs dearly. I try to exersize them safely and my GSD has great recall. However, I always had run-ins with other owners to a point where people hear about me (stories by then make me sound like a violent crazy person with 2 vicious monsters). Here the scenarios:

1. My little dog barks at off lead/ or close on lead dogs. Owner gets angry, GSD starts responding (tail wagging) screaming ensues including *people like you should not have a dog*. Funnily enough they laugh at the terrier and then claim my GSD was aggressive

2. My GSD plays ball or just sniffs around. Another off-lead dog chooses to come close and the owner starts shouting at me to get my GSD on lead (because obviously a GSD is always dangerous). Now my dog notices other dog and wanders over to sniff the bum, I call him back and here are 2 possibilities: he comes back, I get yelled at and insulted nothing else happens, or he humps the dog and all hell breaks loose (often by the owner,
sometimes the dog growls and it sounds dangerous and everyone freaks out)

I often meet lovely people who understand dog behaviour but just as often I meet the type of people who think lifting their labrador into the air (full grown) is a smart choice when another dog approaches.

I just don't know what to do. If I let my GSD off lead he will want to say hi to dogs and people freak out. If I don't his social skills will get worse. My dog trainers (he was assessed by 3 independent trainers all saying neither of my dogs is aggressive both require standard training and socialization) tell me he needs to be off lead and I cannot restrict him because of the odd angry man but I just can't handle the abuse and I always feel sorry for the other dogs which usually turn scared once their owners start screaming.


I am having him done this week so the *how dare you own an intact male* attack becomes useless but I was told by the vet and the trainers that it won't change his humping because it is not sexual but a dominance issue. Apparently if it were aggression or sexual he would do it all the time to anything.

I have been told to put a muzzle on the GSD (despite the fact that he hasn't ever bitten anyone) but my concern then is that people will scream more thinking he is a biter?

Anybody any advice?

I know I can't get the world to love me and my dogs but I would like not to be hated on sight and for my dogs to be able to learn to interact...
 

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I am literally running out the door but look at these for me.

I'll sit down again when I get home.

http://www.dogforum.com/training-behavior-stickies/impulse-control-calmness-168218/ - this one is just great overall.

http://www.dogforum.com/training-be...y-leash-aggression-barrier-frustration-12538/ - could this apply to your terrier (if I understood correctly, she barks when she is on lead)?

http://www.dogforum.com/training-behavior-stickies/dominance-dogs-4076/

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TBvPaqMZyo8 - this one here (positive interrupter noise) helped me completely when one of my dogs would start humping my other dog. He did this when ever he was over excited, like after a bit of playing and such.

Humping is more than likely due to stress, anxiousness, over/under stimulation, etc.
 

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First of all, by what you describe, your Schäfi is probably not dominant, I think it's more probably over-excited, stressed and a bit insecure.

How long do you walk the dogs every day? A healthy Schäfi that isn't exercised (I'm not talking about mindless ball-chasing here) has probably a lot of pent up energy...with an active breed mix like a terrier it is probably similiar.
What do you do to exercise them mentally?

Do you have the possibility to drive a bit and walk them outside your usual walking area? gossip dies hard and I think the last thing your dogs need is you being emotional and people screaming.
the humping is very likely also connected to that. A displacement activity because the dog is super stressed.
If you can... keep your dog on-leash and tell the other people they should keep their dogs away for now...a dog that doesn't listen on it's recall shouldn't be off-leash.
find an off-leash area to let your dogs run off-leash.

walk your dogs sepaparated from each other and at least every day spend 1- 1,5 actually walking each of them and train leash behaviour.
I'd walk them separated because i think, by what you describe, they stress each other out.
 

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Hi There,

thanks for your links and advice I lost my login details for a while there and wasn't able to get in to reply:)

My GSD is normally walked 2-3 times a day together with my little barkette (3x on weekends) each for 45min-1h, during that time he is on lead until we reach a field where he can chase his ball. He is not particularly into running really, when I trained him to run next to the bike he would trott as slowly as possible and was much more comfortable when I walked him, he wasn't and isn't scared of the bike however. Even when off lead he doesn't run unless a ball is thrown and he likes just lying down and resting with it.
Mentally they are being trained every day for 10 minutes (going through commands) and My terrier is getting brain games ie finding treats, having to open puzzles etc. in addition to that both are in separate dog training classes where they behave gloriously, both training towards the bronze citizen ship award. And I also have a 1:1 trainer coming out on walks with me to help me correct what I do wrong (ie telling me where I am too soft or too strict in handling them and correcting my training, she is associated with the classes as well and makes sure nothing is conflicting)

I think I'll try the separate walking suggestion as well as the driving out a bit, I found a nice nature reserve I can get to, to the best of my abilities they are good together in the house but I don't want to stress them-.-

I am so tired of people meddling though, I am a small person and apparently my retired neighbours decided that I need to get rid of my GSD as he is too strong for me, even thogugh I never once had an issue letting him go or being pulled over. All they see is me training him not to pull excessively by stopping every time he tries to push past me and seem to believe I struggle which isn't the case in that as he doesn't pull hard unless a cat shoots out or fireworks go off-.-
 
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