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From: Callie (65.41.23.162)
Subject:         Re: Over-protecive German Shepherd
Date: January 1, 2011 at 7:54 pm PST

In Reply to: Over-protecive German Shepherd posted by Beth Moore on December 14, 2010 at 6:30 pm:

You will likely have to set up scenarios where you ASK people to come over, so you don't have to be pressured to answer the phone for real, but rather can insist that she "sit".

I would FIRST leash her before you do anything so you CAN control her (you don't want her racing out the door AT someone). Have her "sit" and be quiet before you admit or acknowledge the visitor.

PRIOR to this tho, you really need to do something like "Nothing in Life is Free" training on an ongoing basis so this dog knows that AT ALL TIMES she must obey -- not just when nothing else distracts her.

She's barking her head off and you say "Sit". She lunges but you stand on the leash and hold firm. "No, SIT!"

The big deal is you must not reinforce her actions and that's hard. You can't say "Oh, noooo, it's OK..... don't be upset!! C'mon girl .... shhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh"

And particularly DO NOT pet her or try to physically calm her. Instead, lead her away from the door while on leash and put her in her crate. Close the door and walk away and THEN go answer the door. Literally you have to let her know YOU are the decision-maker here.

Then you work step by step with her reactivity. Someone steps on the porch ... then have them just LEAVE. (again this has to be set up) and you tell the dog to "sit" so YOU can look out and see what's up.

You'll stress to her this is YOUR job, not hers.

I have a whole article I'd send you if you want on how I deal with barking in the house. Because barking is sort of an all or nothing thing. It can't be 'ok' sometimes and then NOT others. The dog doesn't understand that.

my email is:
callie at critturs dot com

(no spaces use the punctuation) -- if you want to email me I'd be happy to send you more information.


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