Tuesday, August 27, 2019

Why is your German Shepherd Dog Overly Aggressive?


Overly Aggressive German Shepherds is a big problem!

If you are a German Shepherd lover, there are chances that you like to meet new German Shepherd owners and mingle with new dogs. I am sure that by doing so you have met shepherds with strange behavior. Overly aggressive German Shepherd Dogs are threats to not only the owners, but also other animals and friends of their owners. The fact is, it is due to the lack of knowledge of the owners that many shepherds become aggressive. Well, aggression is a genetic trait that stimulates the protective drive of the breed. Over aggression in German Shepherd Dogs is a psychological imbalance and a serious fault in the breed. Such behavior is a deviation from the standard of GSD behavior.

This post includes tips and tricks to handle an overly aggressive German Shepherd Dog. You can get some important points that may help you make your German Shepherd Dog learn good habits. Teaching should start at the very young age, but since most dogs start displaying aggressive behavior in the later age you need to be well equipped with the technical know-how of teaching good things that can be applied at any point of time in the dog's life span. Remember GSD is a very intelligent breed and has an instinctual tendency to please his master - its important to understand this. Make your dog please you and show that you are pleased when he shows desirable behavior.

Most GSD owners, I have come across, cannot understand how to get their overly aggressive shepherds to learn good habits. Dogs are not humans. They understand things in a very different way. So most often, when an untrained trainer is training your German Shepherd, he is actually contributing to the dog's behavioral problems, thereby making them worse! My first tip to solving this problem is to find the right trainer, who knows how to communicate with and train a GSD with scientific methods. German shepherds are different from other breeds. A professionally trained trainer understands this well! Slashing, yelling and forcing him doesn't really work. A good trainer is a canine behaviorist first; he should be able to understand what your Shepherd actually need.

An untrained German Shepherd Dog can be a nightmare. So, before you have to make a decision to have your monstrous shepherd put down, you should in for some effective training session. An overly aggressive German Shepherd Dog does not just show up its wildness one day suddenly. It might have displayed warning signals quite often in his life that he had never been a friendly pet. As a young pup he might have been a timid dog that has always disliked strangers or strange places or he could have showed aggression at people coming near him and his food and toys. As a responsible owner you should be able to observe your pup's subtle behavioral changes and identify what's wrong!

 All dogs must be well socialized and should undergo a serious obedience training session either at home or in classes, in order to make them almost no-problem dogs. Proper socialization mitigates dominance and over aggression. Your dog's handler should be knowledgeable enough. The handler's aggression towards your German Shepherd will never mitigate the dog's aggression. It will never work. The handler MUST have a thorough understanding on:

  • Temperament in dogs and its relation with dominance and aggression
  • How genetics play its role on the dog's behavior and contribute to aggression and dominance

The control of all types of behavior in a dog is a very complex process, and is hugely influenced by genetics and environmental factors.

1. Most important problem area: Unscientific breeding is the most common factor that contributes to aggression of a dog. This area needs serious attention. An overly aggressive German Shepherd Dog, all through his life, shows warning signs that it is not like the other friendly canine companions. Choosing the right breeder is very important. Both the fear based aggression and dominant aggression are due to poor breeding, while territorial aggression and predatorial aggression in German Shepherds are normal and desirable to a certain degree. A well-bred GSD has a stead nerve and stable psychological health. Over-aggression and attack behavior are very rare in a well-bred specimen. 


2. Training sessions: Training process starts by boosting up the pup's the confidence level and making it feel secured. Overly aggressive German Shepherd Dogs usually have some kind of fear. They are often psychologically weak with low degree of hardness in their character. A pup with lack of confidence and psychological resiliency to unpleasant and strange situations, cannot be corrected easily. I suggest creating a perfect environment around the training zone. You can invite a few friends of yours whom your dog knows well. With the gradual passage of time you can invite a stranger along with your friends and go on for stroll in the park with them and your dog. Gradually increase the number of friends and strangers. This can be a very effective socialization technique and should be a slow process. By making haste in this process you may unknowingly contribute to your shepherd's behavioral problem, instead of solving it. A gradual and slow process in this socialization technique will keep pup's stress under control, and he will feel comfortable, and eventually get socialize to strangers and strange situations.

3. Mingling with other dogs: Often times aggressive dogs cannot tolerate other animals within their vicinity, which makes the dogs show aggressive behavior towards them. This is not a desirable characteristics of a well-bred GSD. Such problems can be solved, although not a very easy task. Mingling session has to be started immediately Today is the right time! Keep your dog on the leash in a region having a few other more confident and calm dogs. Hold the leash tight and as soon as he shows signs of aggression, just give him a mild jolt with a sharp "NO". Repeat it whenever he shows signs of anger. Keep a constant eye on him and you can predict how he will be behaving on a specific situation a few seconds before he actually shows the aggression. As soon as you can predict his behavior, give him a jolt with a sharp "NO". It will take a lot of time to socialize your German Shepherd Dog with other dogs. You need to be patient and consistent and handle him correctly, and with firm hand.

4. Keep your dog away from other aggressive adult dogs: Remember dogs are pack animals and they live a pack life. Their specific behaviors are usually the resultant products of staying together within the pack, which is very natural. If they do not consider their owner as the pack leader they will take it upon themselves to become the leader of the pack which turns out to be quite detrimental. If you have a new addition to your kennel, keep the new dog or puppy away from the other aggressive members of your kennel. Studies have shown that dogs and puppies that are in contact with the other aggressive pack mates usually become aggressive with time. Get the new dog surround with cool tempered, confident, well mannered, playful dogs with positive behavioral traits.

5. A battered German Shepherd loses trust and confidence: A German Shepherd that is being tortured physically and/or mentally today, will become an overly aggressive monster tomorrow. An abused dog is prone to become frequent biter and usually turns out to be overly aggressive towards human. Do not make your dog lose trust no you. If you are the second owner of your GSD, who is highly aggressive. You (yourself) are the right person to reduce his aggression. Help him regain his trust and confidence on you. Take him to walk... long walk. Take him to swim and play frisbee. Serve him treats when he listens to your commands. Try to develop a bondage with your dog; make him understand that you are his pack member, BUT DO NOT FORGET TO ESTABLISH ALFA MEMBERSHIP IN THE PROCESS.

6. Establish Alfa Membership: German Shepherds instinctively try to establish a rank within their pack. Dominant German Shepherds have been studied to have problems with their pack and rank within the pack. You need to be an established Alfa member of the pack. If you are an owner of a dominant German Shepherd Dog, you have to learn to become the alfa member of the pack, which most owners are not aware of or give this an afterthought. Establishing the leadership is a continuous and consistent process, which should be started since its puppy-hood. Crate training is of utmost importance here.

7. Lack of Exercise: German Shepherds are working dog. Less work and less exercise makes the dog easily frustrated. Aggression may be a result of this too! Frustration and aggression are directly related in working breeds like German Shepherd Dogs. A tired dog is a contend dog. Put him to heavy exercise. Long walk, trot, swimming, playing fetch are best exercise you can give to your dog, backed with good food and sufficient rest.

8. Poor Nerves: Dogs with poor nerves can be fierce biter. Indication of poor nerves are shrinking away from the strangers or fear of loud noises. Poor nerve is a breeding fault... this means such a behavior is wrongly controlled by genetics. It is hence important to look for the right breeder and his breeding programs.


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Aggression is a seriously detrimental behavior that needs be adjusted with the help corrective training.

To conclude, the first and the major step to dealing with an overly aggressive German Shepherd Dog is to understand why the dog acts the way he does, and then figuring out what strategic drives should be taken as corrective measures.


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All you need to know about German Shepherd Dogs. Read out what I have to share with you regarding the amazing German Shepherd Dog breed. Are Alsatian dogs and German Shepherd Dogs same? Who was Max Von Stephanitz and What is SV? Also learn a bit more in depth on German Shepherd Dog training tips, German Shepherd puppy care tips, German Shepherd Dog behavior, German Shepherd instinct, German Shepherd Dog standard and history of German Shepherds.

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