I have a 19 month old male showline gsd that was diagnosed with mild hip dysplasia in his left hip. For the last two months he has been behaving very badly. The problems first started one day when my sister came over. Kolbie has always liked to give hugs and kisses, so he jumped up and put both front feet on each of her shoulders and then started to give her kisses. While he was doing this she was petting him. For no reason at all he laid both ears back and gave a really serious growl in her face, while at he same time holding her in place with his front legs. I yanked him off of her and then he acted like nothing had happened and was fine with her. Needless to say it scared the hell out of my sister. The next incident happened when he acted like he might not be feeling very well so we tried to take his temperature. I held his collar so he couldn't move away, while my mother started to take his temperature. This time he again gave a serious growl and spun on my mother, all I can say is that it is a good thing that I had ahold of his collar. He has always loved people but he has now tried to bite a couple of people when they have come into our house. He was properly socialized as a pup and we have never had any problems with him until recently. He now will not let any one brush him or trim his toenails. He will growl at you and put all of his hackles up and leave the room. I am afraid that he is going to bite someone and really do some damage. I am afraid that if he doesn't straighten up that I am going to have to have him put to sleep. Do you think that he could be in so much pain from his hip that he would act this way? I am open to any suggestions at this point.
Sorry to tell you this but he is likely starting to have pain and it is effecting his temperment. I had this on a male about 10 years ago and he did the same thing. He finally bit a female police officier who had placed her hand on his kennel. Did alot of damage to her hand. Had to put him down.
Email me privately. I would not yet jump to conclusions. Yes, he could have pain, but he may not. I think it is much more likely he is at the age where he is testing people, especially those he percieves as being able to dominate. If you are not experienced with this, and if his behavior is NOT stopped, whatever the reason causing it, you may well have a problem later that would result in having to put him down. So I think it is a wise thing to email me and I will offer you some suggestions for getting help you need.
If it is pain, that is easy to check, put him on pain meds and see if temperament changes. My guess is no. It sounds more of a typical male coming of age at 17-19 months and testing how far he can go. Apparently quite far. Time for a serious attitude adjustment. Being allowed to jump on a person and put his paws on the shoulder is a dominance gesture of the dog. Same as when dogs put their paws on another dogs back/shoulders. For starters, stop that! Pain from the hips is not felt in the toenails either. If you lay him down to cut the toenails, then to him that means he has to remain in a submissive position and he is resisting that now that is he no longer just a boy. Brushing also does not cause pain from the hips. He is getting away with bad behaviour and you are letting him. Heckles and pain do not go hand in hand either. Heckels go up because he is unsure about what he is doing. He wants to be top dog so he is acting out, but he is not really mature enough to be top dog so that creates the insecurity in him, hence the heckles. He needs boundries, very clear boundries. Til that is resolved, no more loveydovey stuff. He needs to earn that. Set some houserules he needs to follow and stick by them. Then do the usual, not let him go through doors and tight spaces first, don't step over him, he has to get up, he is no longer allowed on furniture. Time to get one of those behaviour books. And fast. Every time he is successful with the unwanted behaviour it will be like a self rewarding mechanism, manifest itself and be harder to correct.
FYI, dogs have an incredible pain threshold. I have had dogs injured and while they were recouperating their temperament did not change because of the pain. Have had a Rotti with HD in the family, she was always a miserable puppy, always a mean dog when older, but only to outsiders, never to 'her people'. The HD was not the reason her aggression. We have also had to do emergency treatments with dogs that got injured while out and about. Like a dog running through barbed wire and getting shredded. Happened 2 times with different dogs. One dog had no skin left on the inside of her hock and needed plastic surgery with skin grafts the next day. Not a peep out of her. The other we had to bandage with scarves and t-shirts to control bleeding and then we had over an hour and half to go back in the deep sand til we got to the car. We were a mess from worrying but the dog kind of took it in stride. Not a peep out of him. Had to stitch up a dog with regular needle and thread, no anasthetic, after she got caught on a fence that she decided to jump. Not a peep out of her after the jump or during the procedure. I had a dog run after a cat the day after surgery that had her front leg open and every digit of her foot laying sprawled out on the operating table to look for a bloody grass seed and all its remnants after it had burrowed into the foot and caused a major infection. My heart fell when she ran off, was just to the tree at the end of the yard, but still. She came back very happy that she showed that cat! Not a peep out of her, no limping, lots of bleeding, she blew a few stitches, vet did nothing. Said the bleeding was good, would clean out the wound. And so on. If it was an older dog and lots of body parts were starting to ache, ok. But just from mild HD... I doubt it.
I agree with Hodie on this one. He is probably just getting more mature and more serious. I have seen this in alot of dogs as they mature. He now wants to try and up his level in the pack. Good luck with him, you made the correct first step by asking for help.
Yes, please listen to Hodie & DH, don't throw the baby out with the bath water! Many GSD's get a little "big for their britches" between 1 & 3 yrs. Proper handling/training may be all you need.
Hope you guys are right!
Keep us posted on how he does ok?
Actually if you are brushing down on his hip area it can cause pain.
Does this happen to bitch as well?
Laris ,,not sure what you are asking?
Any dog with HD could expereince pain if you were brushing and pushing down on the hip area, how the dog was standing could be a factor also..
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