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Hyperactive GSD

This is a place to gain some understanding of dog behavior and to assist people in training their dogs and dealing with common behavior problems, regardless of the method(s) used. This can cover the spectrum from non-aversive to traditional methods of dog training. There are many ways to train a dog. Please avoid aggressive responses, and counter ideas and opinions with which you don't agree with friendly and helpful advice. Please refrain from submitting posts that promote off-topic discussions. Keep in mind that you may be receiving advice from other dog owners and lovers... not professionals. If you have a major problem, always seek the advice of a trainer or behaviorist!

  
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Zephyr

1213425
 
 
Barked: Wed Jan 2, '13 4:43pm PST 
Your trainer talked you into a crappy e-collar to boot if that's how it 'works'.

I own and have used an e-collar on my own dogs and in the simplest terms, you're doing it wrong. Poor pup.
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Pandora

1273773
 
 
Barked: Wed Jan 2, '13 4:50pm PST 
Yeah poor pup who would have been shot in the back of the head at 5 weeks old if it wasnt for me. i feel so bad.

and the shock collar isnt crappy, it was 300 bucks. the batteries are crappy because im cheap

Edited by author Wed Jan 2, '13 4:51pm PST

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Zephyr

1213425
 
 
Barked: Wed Jan 2, '13 5:10pm PST 
Pointing out your logical fallacy isn't an insult, it's just a fact.

As for my advice, it was to jettison the trainer but since you won't do that:

-Replace walking with a bike. There's decent info out there on building up stamina and endurance but it's pretty much the only way to get my Mali cardio reasonably since he can outrun me any day of the week.
-Find a way to direct the energy. Tracking and other dog-sports will occupy her mind and on the bright side you'd be around people who knew what they were doing with high energy dogs.
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ARCHMX Asher RL1X RL2X RL3X RL

we will dance in- the ring without- words
 
 
Barked: Wed Jan 2, '13 5:16pm PST 
Pandora, I PM'd you a link to a bunch of videos. If you have any questions, just shoot me a PM back.
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Tiller- (Skansen's- Ira in the M

I DO Exist...To- Drive You Batty
 
 
Barked: Wed Jan 2, '13 5:37pm PST 
GSDs are perpetual ball busters at this age. With some different genetic influences, American lines can be ridiculously on their toes, hyper, prodding, behaviorally spastic with off the charts energy. And experts at putting your nerves in a blender and splicing them into smithereens.

This schedule, this dog is running your life. Ok, so you probably know that laugh out loud I see you got a Saint Bernard, too, to try to even her out. You need to stop getting caught up in this. She's ruling your roost.

Firstly, please invest in some puzzle toys and some bones. Things to keep her busy and occupied. Bones are good, too. She should have access to something that will occupy the crap out of her daily. The optimum time for this would be when you are making dinner.

2) Have your husband call you when he is coming home. Then take her for a walk. Then come home and feed her. Tell him to stay in the livingroom or something wink She's too habitual with the crazy greeting, so break the pattern.

3) When you say training, do you pattern work this dog? And by this I mean, do you have a preset obedience training pattern when you train, or is it just a bunch o' sits, down, etc.? You should come up with a two or three minute pattern that mingles in all her known commands. You should go out expecting her to complete this pattern flawlessly, daily. When she goofs, go back to the beginning of the pattern. Don't let her boss you around. Often with teenagers, we need some gauge or bar to see how well we are doing, who is wearing the pants in the relationship and so on. My counsel is always pattern work. It's just this disciplined thing by which you can judge. If you can't map a pattern yourself, I will map one for you. It should include commands you are confident she knows well. And then that's it....you are on it until she does it right. GSDs are notoriously sneaky at this age. You want a PERFECT pattern every day. If she goofs, return to the beginning sequence of the pattern. Say a word that marks you are doing this..."restart," "no" or whatever.

*****GSDs have an inherent willingness to please. I don't care the individual dog, they DO! But it is a breed where sometimes you need to earn their respect....not through shock collars and the like (not ragging on you, lol), but from them seeing you are a good leader, decision maker and that you can control a scene (meaning environmental, vs her herself). With these behaviors and yodeling sequences et al, she is not thinking you are much of that.

4) In respect of the above, take yoga, count back from ten slowly, whatever you need to do, but CHILL! She is under your skin. Don't think she can't sense that. You need to be calm. Saying words slower, motions slower....that can help. Very hard to will yourself to be calm, but you need to do this. Often faking it before you make it can do wonders laugh out loud I have worked with many teenage GSDs owners and I can just hear them through you. wink If you act agitated, you lose their respect. They aren't looking at you as someone who control your own horizon.

5) Mat train. Do you know what this is? It is the most productive way to give time outs and work on impulse control at the same time.

6) Practice NLIF. She gets nothing, ever, that is her own idea. Just go cold turkey, my friend. And when YOU decide she is getting something, and only then, make her do something for it.

7) She will earn couch cuddles later. She's too much walking over you right now. Have her down quietly by your feet. If she can stay there five minutes, then you could entertain the thought of asking her up.

8) Patience exercises. Treat on floor (first in your hand) with counts of time, start at ten (counts), extend to fifty (counts), waiting until you release her.

Boot CAMP! laugh out loud big laugh

9) 9) Will she/do you play tug???? That can be very helpful in building impulse control.

Will add if you got her at five weeks, that is part of your problem. She missed out on a critical learning period with her littermates, which can put her behind the bar.

Edited by author Wed Jan 2, '13 5:39pm PST

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Jackson Tan

Lad about town
 
 
Barked: Wed Jan 2, '13 9:46pm PST 
You are using the shock collar wrong, but anyway .... seeming you don't want to listen to Zeph or Squam about that, I won't go into it.

Nosework would be good. Make her work for her dinner, even. Throw handfuls of kibble out into the yard and let her find it.

Free run her.By the bike, in a field, somewhere. Walking doesn't seem to do much for GSDs, especially in that age gap. She needs to learn some self control. Do look into Karen Overall, do pick up control unleashed. Find a trainer that will help you in other ways rather than just slapping an ecollar on her. Tether her to you, or just leave a leash on her in the house so you can take control when guests come. Leave some treats at the door, so your guests can ask for a sit. There's lots than can be done. She is in a bratty phase right now and needs to burn off all that energy and learn ways to control herself.

I would also get rid of the shock collar. That is a slippery slope, especially on high stim, and should not be used in this situation. Your trainer is wrong.
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Kye

I'm like- Einstein only- hairier.
 
 
Barked: Thu Jan 3, '13 1:13am PST 
A lot of really good responses from Squ'mey, Zephyr and Tiller. Not a lot more I can add other than maybe trying her in Flyball or Agility. If she really likes balls then Flyball could really be good, though I think agility maybe utilizes a little more obedience aspects then Flyball. You could start by setting yourself and Pandora goals, such as winning a novice agility rally or maybe joining a beginners obedience class and graduating with doggy honors. Any activity that makes her use her mind as well as her body is a great way to not only drain energy but will help her be emotionally happy too.

Also when you go on walks get her a doggy back pack. Start with an empty backpack until she gets used to it and then add a few bottles of water and a collapsible water dish for when its hot out. Most dogs, and especially GSDs, like to have a job and lend a helping paw so by using a backpack she learns that her job is to carry the water, or whatever you choose to put in there. Just make sure the backpack doesn't weigh too much laugh out loud

When people come to the door ask them not to pet or talk to her until she is in a sit and calm. With my guys I have an 'invisible line' that they wait at before I invite them to greet company. It works great for keeping them off people coming in and stops them from rushing the door every time it opens.

I absolutely LOVE the NILF (Nothing In Life is Free) because it makes the dog actively think about the right response. Instead of jumping for her food dish with reckless abandon her brain will think "Food=Sit" or whichever command you want before she gets what she wants. GSD's are extremely intelligent and like being included in activities. Here are a few links on NILF:
http://www.terrificpets.com/articles/102212265.asp
http://k9 deb.com/nilif.htm

I agree that the shock collar is the wrong tool for this situation. She's already very excited so the last thing she needs is to be bombarded with even more stimuli. Try and find a trainer that has some experience with German Shepherds in particular. Usually a trainer that is very knowledgeable with a specific breed can offer more insights and tips then someone with a general 'dog sense'. Not always mind you, but it helps if you're familiar with breed quirks and triggers.

Just curious about the place you got her from. Did they charge you for her or was she a give away puppy from an owner too stupid to spay his dog? Sorry, that sounds a bit harsh but it just makes me mad that people wont fix their pet and then when it gets pregnant wont even commit to caring for the offspring. At 5 weeks she was not even close to being ready for a new home. Leaving the litter before 7 weeks can affect the puppy's ability to get along with other dogs later and they will likely have trouble learning to inhibit the force of their bite among other things.

Edited by author Thu Jan 3, '13 1:13am PST

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Member Since
04/14/2012
 
 
Barked: Thu Jan 3, '13 1:48am PST 
A couple of thoughts from a complete novice and not a trainer!

As owners of a very hyper breed, a Border Collie we have found a tablet called Calm-eez very effective these can be found on Amazon at about £4 a pack.Totally natural.

I always feel that the border collies we've had could have done with more exercise (ours get about 2 hrs off lead a day and garden games) but then some very unpleasant person left a box with 2 puppies outside the house we own in Italy.We are not there often and were relieved when a kind neighbor said she would feed them but they live an otherwise' wild' life.I managed to get the council to spay the girl and they did this then released her to our garden!The 2 dogs are friendly to us and the girl particularly loves me to make a fuss of her but neither want to come inside or to get too close. Watching their behaviour makes me think that its very natural for a dog to be sleeping and relaxed for much of the day especailly when they have eaten.Thse dogs do g off in the evening and will have a mad 20 mins chasing and playing but most of the time they just chill It makes me think its our homes and lifestyles that make dogs hyper rather than the dogs themselves.

I know if I got up at 5.30am and my dog got so much human attention he'd be terrible.He would just get to expect more and more attention ( I'm including walks as attention ) .Do dogs really need 4 hours of walking a day to be happy?Left to their own devices I dont see any evidence that they feel it necessary to exercise that much unless its in the search of food or a female in season!
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Kye

I'm like- Einstein only- hairier.
 
 
Barked: Thu Jan 3, '13 2:12am PST 
I don't think that giving medicine (even OTC all natural meds) is the right way to go here. I bet the stray Border Collies do more then you realize though, and keep in mind that they get a lot more mental stimulation then an indoor pet. They have the freedom to go and exercise themselves whenever they choose whereas a dog kept primarily inside is staring at the walls all day so often needs more mental/physical exercise to make up for the lack of it during the day. The American lines (In GSD's) behave a little differently, to steal Tillers well articulated info " American lines can be ridiculously on their toes, hyper, prodding, behaviorally spastic with off the charts energy." So a dog like this probably does need a higher than normal activity schedule to be truly happy.

At Last Poster> Have you tried surrendering these pups to the RSPCA or finding them homes as apposed to living 'wild'? From the sounds of it they are young enough to adapt to being pets instead of strays. Not bashing, just curious. dog
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Sanka- I'll Miss- You

The ground is my- newspaper.
 
 
Barked: Thu Jan 3, '13 6:40am PST 
So, guest's advice was to drug the dog to calm it down and not take it out much because then it will expect more?

I don't think the OP needs to be told how ridiculous this is.

If you go out 4 times for walks, perhaps change what you do during those outings. Maybe the first one is just a walk, then the second one is a walk with obedience, then the next is a walk to an area to play ball, etc. Mix it up some, walk to different areas, add some spontaneity to her life on the outings. You don't want it to be Groundhog Day for her.
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