Thanks everyone!! I will just keep persisting with her
Wish me luck
Good luck! Let us know how you go.
people become jaded by puppies, and that is what she has been all this time. Now you see the holes in your permissiveness allowing her to patrol the front gate of her own accord and never being offered an alternative behavior for the stimulus. She's not a baby that will follow you for a click and a treat, this has now clicked over into serious work which needs a firm hand and not allowing her to escalate. Be firm, before she gets to even think about it send her to her crate and reward.
Anywho, just saying...
Nekhbet, I'm sorry you feel that way but I must say that I am a little offended by the tone in your last post. As I said in an earlier post, I have actually had previous experience with this breed (this is my 3rd GSD). My problem was simply that she has presented with some difficulties in training that previously she had mastered.
While I know that your comments are coming from a good place, I feel that it sometimes makes it hard for new members to these forums to express themselves in an open manner. Without writing a huge post about my entire history with animals it is impossible for others to know whether or not I have experience with animals and am struggling with a unique problem or whether I am an owner who just bought a puppy on a whim and then laments over its behaviour.
Ultimately I think people that bother coming on these forums are dog lovers and at the core are trying their best to learn and overcome problems they may have with their pets.
I agree with your post annukya and agree that nehkbet can come across a little harsh (but they're hardly the only one and it is just so difficult over this medium). The only thing I would say is that, well obviously you've had a lot of experience with the breed before, but is it possible that maybe this dog has stronger drives than your previous two? I know at our sporting club we have the whole spectrum of shepherds - ie working lines and show lines, and they're very different dogs and even 2 dogs from the same litter can be polar opposites. I'm not trying to say I don't think you're capable of handling your dog or anything, merely that perhaps what worked with the last dogs won't be as effective with this dog.
I also don't think it's any coincidence that the behaviour kicked in once she was over a year, I noticed a massive change in my dog at that time too (a doberman cross). He was finished with all the fear periods, had grown bigger and faster than every other dog in the park (except for the great danes kind of thing) and his confidence and desire to work and prove himself sky-rocketed.
I'm not a trainer but, if this were my dog (and my dog has pulled this kind of crap with me over the years), my approach would be to have a friend (someone that she usually barks at) and get them to come to the gate. I guess set her up to react so that you can correct and teach the behaviour that you want in these instances. We she goes off, block her, and continue to block her until she is forced to confront you. Then slowly bring the person/trigger closer but only to the point where you're still maintaining control and the dog is looking at you because you have control over everything. Now with my dog in those situations, he looks at me, he is asking what are we going to do and what is he allowed to do but it's only because he knows there's no alternative (we love each other lots but he has lots of ideas that just aren't acceptable). If he tries to do anything else, he will be blocked and get nothing.
It is not uncommon for particular training to be 'mastered' and then completely disregarded when it suits the dog. The dog just needs to learn there are no rewards through that, only through doing what you want.
I didn't mean it in that way at all ... I need to use smilies more often ... darn you internet *shakes fist* It wasnt patronising, I said the dog is no longer a baby and that patrolling behavior leads to what you see now, particularly in guarding breeds.
And let's not roll too far in the other direction either ... I never said the dog was treated like a baby, I said the dog was a baby, as in an immature individual. There is holes in everyone's training ... EVERYONES! Even the trainers themselves, it's human nature and we usually do not realise until something happens. Having experience in a breed too that has so many variations between lines can sometimes lull people into a false sense of security, or back into habits one did with the other dogs. I can tell you the difference between my two Malinois, despite being related, is really huge!It is unfair to assume that this person has been too permissive and treated their dog like a baby just because she suddenly started guarding the gate
I agree the majority with Nehkbet but wanted to point out the reason I think the behaviour seems to have escalated, although I do also agree its partly because she is maturing. The thing is that she is only 14 months real adult maturity isn't reached until 18 - 24 months. If you don't get this in hand now it will escalate.
You grabbed the dogs collar while she was already in a heightened state of arousal, probably yanked her (not in a violent of vicious way just a yank) which in her state of mind probably wouldn't have helped and then reprimanded her. You have created fence/barrier aggression.
Putting her in the back garden where she can't get to the front won't make her bash at the fence to get to you. It is good management and should be something you look at doing while you work on this behaviour. If the person coming to the gate is not someone you know and is not confident with you dog I would be confining her to either a crate or the back garden until they are inside the gate and she has calmed down.
If it is someone confident with dogs and your dog specifically then you can have them help you work on the behaviour, but you really need to develop a strong plan and this would be best done with a good behaviourist, I would recommend Steve from K9 Pro, he is local and has lots of working breed knowledge, especially Guarding breeds.
Have to also say that breed knowledge doesn't mean you will have perfect training skills with that breed. Each dog is different and has a different personality, comes from different lines/temperaments etc, for instance a show line GSD is going to be a lot different training wise then a working line GSD.
As also mentioned above even very experienced trainers are not perfect but it is their ability to pick up on potential issues early and curb those behaviours that make them good at what they do.
I think one of the most important things to have as a handler is the realisation that our dogs issues are most often then not created by us. If we take responsibility rather then blaming the dog then we are able to fix the problem a lot easier as then we start to look at the true cause of the issue.
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