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Discussion Starter #1
My roommates 1 year old GSD is really starting to show her true colors, and it's not pretty.

We've been keeping her and Chessa separated for quite some time now, because they are just a volatile combination. Admittedly, Chessa is a big factor in them not getting along. She is very fear aggressive with big dogs, and it sets my roommates dog off. She normally does learn to be ok with big dogs though, and it's not the case with this dog, because M has given her reason to be afraid. The last interaction they had was Chessa trying to come to me, and since she was going vaguely in M's owners direction, M blew up at her. We managed to get them apart before anything awful happened, but it scared me to death.

M and Echo have gotten in a few spats, but generally get along very well and wrestle all the time. Echo is super easy going and very very hard to piss off, but M has managed it because she's so rude and domineering. Today Echo was sitting by another roommate and M just ran over and grabbed her by the neck, and it exploded from there. M's owner had to body slam her, and I managed to grab Echo, but got badly bitten in the process. I have a deep puncture on the top of my wrist, and have lost the feeling in it. Echo also has a puncture under her neck.

I'm just so frustrated with this dog. Now I'm having to keep all my dogs completely separate from her because it's not worth the risk, and it's really stressful.:( All the signs have been there that M is getting out of control, but M's owner just makes excuses for it. I told her today she needs to condition M to wearing a muzzle and get her some training. I'm not putting my dogs in danger. Gah. I'm just really upset.
 

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That does sound stressful! I hope things will be fixed.

Sounds like M's owner needs to work on her dog. It sounds like it's doing the whole "I own this human" thing.

My own dog tries to do that some times. I live with my fiancé, his mother and her dog, Max. My dog loves my partner's mother so much that some times she tries to keep Max from her. I always try make sure my dog understands she is behaving badly. Either by being excluded from the room, crated or made to lie in a corner.
 

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Schäfis can be quite pushy which makes them sometimes not so compartible with other dogs (or dog breeds)...especially the females can have a lot of pepper and they're slow when it comes to maturing.
most of them can trained in a way to leave other dogs alone (a positive effect of them being often pretty handler-oriented), but for that the owner needs to able and willing to manage the dog so that it doesn't even start escalating.
if you feel that they can't or don't want to do that I'd suggest giving the dog in other hands.
however, for Schäfis it is often difficult to find a new, fitting owner once they entered a shelter, because there are so many of them and because of them being so people-centric and not able to show their good side so well when they're without a human partner to guide them. :(
 

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Does this dog have any time to play or do a job outside of the house?

GSDs are working bred dogs. They are protective, powerful, driven, and strong animals - NOT for someone who is not going to train them, and NOT for someone who is not going to address their energy and drive.

She needs to address why the dog behaves this way - Which is why I wonder if the dog has enough time outside. Our working dogs play ball, bike, run, go swimming, run the treadmill - For HOURS. We have one bitch in the club, a black GSD, who had to bike with her owner for five miles before she could even THINK about training or the dog was a nut. This could be a cause.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
The dog is crated almost all the time, and I totally understand lack of a job/exercise/training is the cause of this behavior. Unfortunately despite my efforts i can't change it more. She occasionally gets to go to the barn, but barks at anyone new so it's very limited. Although not aggressive, it's not ok for her to be scaring people.

I know what needs to be done, it's just frustrating to be helpless. M isn't a bad tempered dog in general, she just lacks the training and exercise to be a good dog. I will never understand why people insist on getting these harder breeds when they're almost never home.
 

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You need to have a talk with your roommate. Either she needs to step up and do these things or that dog needs to go somewhere she can be taken care of. It sounds like she obviously hasn't been properly socialized and needs an outlet. If she does not, she is going to hurt somebody or drive herself insane.
 

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I'd try to find a violence-free working trainer and/behaviourist that knows how to work with working dog breeds.

contacting the local dogsports club can also help, if they train violence free. these people are often pretty knowledgable about how to work with Schäfis and what is normal for the breed. not only can they give tips, sports is also a good outlet for the dog and i think both, dog and handler, can profit a lot from an obedience/UO course.
the Dog could perhaps also profit from social walks or group training, where it is together with other dogs, without being in direct interaction with them. the goal, for now, should not be that this dog loves all other dogs... it should be that it ignores other dogs instead of attacking.
Since she seem to work relatively fine with Echo (most of the time), the owner could also try to find a few well-socialised adult dogs that are around the same weight and play in a similiar rough way (like...other Schäfis). I think that can also help with training polite dog manners when supervised carefully my the handlers and ideally a behaviorist/trainer.

generally I'd keep the dogs apart of each other until M is more reliable around your dogs.
if they are in the same room, keep all on them on-leash and I agree that conditioning dogs on a muzzle is never wrong, regardless of the breed.

If i understand right all these dogs are females. is the Schäfi still intact (please neuter the dogs too early) so it would be not so unusually for a female dog of that breed to be reactive towards dogs of the own gender.
Schäfis are not bred towards aggression towards other dogs but they're often also not selected on peaceful behaviour around other dogs...working abilities, the will to work together with the human or fast decision making is probably higher on the list of things what breeders want in a Schäfi.
the things that make them good working dogs, sometimes don't make then the nicest buddies around other dogs...a lot of them have very expressive bodylaguage and can show a lot of relatively dominant behaviour when around other dogs. with more sensitive dogs this can lead to conflicts.
 

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You do have the option of moving out and finding a new roommate. it may suck, but if you don't have other options this one is available to you. Definitely separate the dogs until you're comfortable with what's going on. You're not as helpless as you think-and yes, I do realize moving is expensive. But there are options.

You could also offer to work with the dog yourself if you guys are comfortable with that. It doesn't teach your roommate to take care of their dog, but it does solve the problem while you're living together. Or you can offer ideas like flirt poles and tug toys for when she is home that tire the dog faster.

You could do something nice every time your roommate came home and took her dog out (rewarding your roommate for handling the situation). Maybe there's a conflict keeping M away from home that you're unaware of. Or you can literally ask M what's going on and explain (gently!) your side of the situation and that you feel your relationship is being torn apart.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I really don't have the option of moving out. I live on a farm and work off my rent(as well as my horses board) and could not afford to move. Especially not with 3 dogs.

We have been talking about it, and she is willing to take the dog back to obedience school. I don't really think it will solve the problem, but i hope it will make the dog more manageable. Currently she doesn't sit, lay down, stay or come unless she darn well feels like it.

We can(and will) keep them apart, it's just frustrating.
 
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