Over protective dog
January 16, 2007 8:47pm CST
I have a serious problem and have no idea how to handle it. My husband has a german sherperd dog that is normally a very easy going dog. We have had this dog since she was 8 months old, and she is now 4. As you can see from the picture she is a gentle dog. But my husbands health has become very bad. And the worse his health gets the more agressive she becomes to anyone or anything that get around him. She has not been agressive towards me yet. But I fear she might. When he is having problems breathing or begins hurting, she will get as close to him as she can without actually being on him. And when this happens she will not allow the other animals or our children to even come into the same room. She will not go after the children but she does get between them and the door and will not move. The animals are another story, as she will go as far as to attack them. I feel that if the we ever have to call 911, they will have to put her down inorder to get to him. We got her because he became a shut in after having a series of strokes and heart attacks. She is like part of him as she does things for him that he can longer do. Such as open doors, get things, and if he is in a room by himself and passes out or falls, she will begin barking and cutting up to get our attention. This is what she is trained to do. But then that is where the problem comes in. Lately she won't let us get to him without me screaming commands at her. She was not like this a month ago. We have discussed giving her to someone else but everyone we know is afraid of her now. As I said she is like a part of him. I can not bare the thought of having her put to sleep. But I am afraid she is going to hurt someone badly or refuse to allow help to get to him when he needs it. What can be done? Is there another way to solve this problem without having her put to sleep? I'm nearly in tears just thinking about doing that.
29 Jan 07
sorry to hear husband is so sick. had a Sheppard just like yours and yes they do get very protective. you can try and have her spend more time with you to see if she/he will transfer some of her natural talents over to you. yes she can safely be given to someone who wants a protective dog for their family. that dogs problem is she likes to be talked to like your best friend not just a pet as they are a very smart breed. if you weren't so far away i'd say bring her/him here i'd have it in a New York minute. if you have a closet in the room or bathroom leave the door open and every once in awhile when you go in give the dog a nice treat getting it closer to the place where you can put the dog and keep it safely. if you happen in the room when husband is having a spell praise the dog and give him treat in safe room or closet then close the door while you see to husband. i'm sure if you contacted the spca go see them someone could tell you how to modify the dogs behaviour. if you live near the border of Buffalo or sarnia and still want to get rid of dog get back to me i'll meet you there to take her/him off your hands if you'd like.
29 Jan 07
would like to say hello to Mr.BD didn't realize that your name was referring to 2 people stupid me should have read all your profile first usually i do but got lazy tonight for some reason maybe he could start giving the dog the treats in closet or another room with door for you to get the dog use to it, then close the door for short period. just to get the dog use to it being away from him for short periods. i'm sure it would make it easier for you to do later on in case something does happen and you can then get the help to him.
• United States
17 Jan 07
Since she was trained to help him, I'm guessing you got her from a special school. If that is the case you might want to call them. They might be able to help figure out what is going on. It soudns though as if she is trying to do her job, she's just over doing it. She may need to be placed with another family, that sometimes happens. You should find out though from them first. They might have some suggestions on how to help.
• United States
17 Jan 07
She knows he is sick it is german shepherds nature to protect thier owners from threats thats what she is trying her best to do .Once you remove her from him her behavior would change as she is reacting to his illness and yes she does know how sick he is . She can be placed with other people safly but if you don't want to then putting her down would be best . She might could be retrained but it would be hard and require a professinal trainer . Dogs know when people are bad sick and most don't trust children to start with .Like I said she is reacting once removed from him she should be ok but should be placed in an adult only home .