The Fastest Way To Train A GSD

German shepherds are undoubtedly the most beautiful and intelligent animals you could ever own. They are fiercely loyal, and, if trained properly, will become an inseparable member of your family.

However, if left to their own devices, German Shepherds become bored, agitated, snappy and — in some cases — a threat to society. They are a strong animal, and they need strong, kind leadership from their masters.

A Healthy Relationship Is The Foundation Of All Training

A dog that is fearful of its owner, translates the fear into self-defense and disobedience. Your pet needs to learn that it can trust and love you.

You do not need to be overly aggressive in order to get obedience.  Obedience is important, but that comes more from consistency than from how harshly you discipline your pet.

I highly recommend that you invest in some training.

Not to teach your dog to behave, but also to teach you how to better communicate with your pet.  It will cost time and money, but the enrichment that comes out of your life is well worth it.

German Shepherd – from Pup to Pal – is a great downloadable training manual from Andrew James.

The earlier you can get into something like this better.

With both a written and audio version, it covers many common issues with training your Shepherd.

When you consider that GSD’s are the highest rate of bites that the local emergency room sees, it underscores how important good training is.

Training Begins With Engaging Play

Many behavioral issues arise out of sheer boredom, so its critical that you provided a variety of activities to keep your GSD mentally engaged.

A bored German shepherd will be so busy trying to play, bark, and get your attention that training sessions won’t work well. Bored puppies don’t train well.

Training as play can be very engaging. Teaching your pet to catch a frisbee can lead to hours of insane fun for the both of you.

Training German Shepherds Not to Bite or Be Aggressive

German shepherds are not naturally aggressive. When you meet an aggressive GSD, it typically means it has experienced unhappy upbringing.

  1. Socialize well with other dogs
    Take it to a puppy dog park, arrange play dates, or to socialization classes.
  2. Do not hit or yell at your puppy
    German shepherds that are abused as young dogs tend to imprint with aggressive behavior as adults.
  3. Be firm, quiet, and praise good behavior
    This will establish you as the leader.

You should establish your alpha role at an early age: start teaching your puppy to “heel” on walks, and make sure that it follows after you through doors, as that is a sign of the respecting your role as pack leader to let you go first.

When your puppy tries biting – immediately turn around, with your hands behind your back. Don’t shout or try pushing the dog away.

Use Structured Obedience Training As A Mental Exercise

Beginning at about eight weeks of age, German shepherds are ready to begin formal training.

You can enroll them in a local obedience class, or use something online, like Brain Training 4 dogs.

For a German shepherd, obedience training is more important than for smaller breeds.

German Shepherd Training In Action

See also a comprehensive guide to GSD training at YourDogAdvisor.