Are You Loving Your German Shepherd Too Much

You hear it so often, people proclaiming their limitless love for their dogs. To be sure, the bond between a human and canine is special, and a wonderful thing, especially if the dog is particularly affectionate, like German Shepherds so often are.

One thing we humans have trouble with is expressing positive emotions; “I can’t express my gratitude to you”, “I cannot thank you enough”, “words are beyond my …”. We also have trouble expressing love towards our closest friends, be they people or German Shepherd dogs.

So we try to show them these feelings by buying the best and softest, shiniest and most comfortable beds and crates, the tastiest food and the most technologically advanced leash. We have a very queer belief that, if what we think is important, then everyone must think it’s important as well.

Another way we choose to express our love is with food. We do this in a good and bad way. The good way is that we research the proper food and diet that contain the best ingredients and we find the tastiest treats to make sure our dog knows how much we love him.

The bad way is that we project our eating discipline on our German shepherds. Most people have little to no discipline when it comes to food and many of us use it as a form of comfort. But our dog isn’t happier if he is eating more than he should be.

Specifically, German shepherds are prone to a variety of health problems which have a much higher rate of occurrence if the dogs are overweight. If you still think showering him with more food than he can handle is the right thing to do, think of how many overweight animals are in nature.

Proclaiming love through lack of leadership

This is the worst of them all, letting your dog in charge. People consider that if they are happy without discipline, their dogs must be too. But dogs are pack animals and they need a leader.

In nature there is always a pack leader. In your family (or pack) you need to be the pack leader. And, as the pack leader, it’s your job to make clear which behavior is acceptable and which is not. Here are a few unacceptable behaviors people don’t generally understand.

Letting your dog on the bed

Many trainers advise you against letting your dog on the bed. Letting him stay in an equal position to you is not a good idea. The better way to go about this is to only let your dog on the bed with permission. This way he doesn’t have full access, so he is not in an equal position.

Jumping on you and your friends

This may be cute when he’s small, innocent and harmless but it’s much harder to control once he weighs almost as much as you. This behavior is actually a form of asserting dominance – the dog is saying pay attention to me now and whoever is the recipient of the leap must comply.

Most dominance problems are easily corrected using a “nothing in life is free” philosophy with your German Shepherd. It’s very simple; all you have to do is make him do something to get what he wants. He wants to go out? Make him sit first. He wants to treat? Make him obey something and then give him a treat.

There isn’t a better and easier way of asserting dominance over your dog than this. This trick is a constant reminder of who is in charge and a great way to make sure your dog always listens to you. What more could you want than a trustworthy German Shepherd companion.

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