If your German Shepherd is annoying then you are probably wondering why and what you can do about it.
This post will show you a number of reasons why your German Shepherd might be annoying and what you can do to stop it.
So, why is my German Shepherd so annoying? Common causes can include a lack of exercise, training or attention. It could also be that you have been inadvertently rewarding the behavior or that you get emotional around it.
There are actually a number of things that could be causing your German Shepherd to be annoying and there are many things to consider.
Why your German Shepherd is annoying
Each of the different reasons why your German Shepherd is annoying will likely come with a number of clues in the way that it is annoying.
Below, I will mention a number of reasons why your German Shepherd could be annoying you and the signs to look for with them.
A lack of exercise
German Shepherds are a breed that is supposed to get a lot of exercise. When German Shepherds do not get a lot of exercise it can cause them to develop behavioral issues and to do things that you might consider annoying.
Generally, it is recommended that a German Shepherd get at least one hour of exercise per day and sometimes even that is not enough.
If your German Shepherd is not currently getting a lot of exercise then it is likely that it has something to do with it and the first thing that you should do is to make sure that it does get enough exercise.
Related post: Ways to exercise your German Shepherd.
A lack of training
Another reason why your German Shepherd annoys you could be that it does not know that you do not want it to act in that way.
If you have not spent much time training your German Shepherd to act the way that you want it to then it will act the way that it thinks you want it to act. This is unlikely to be the way that you actually want it to act.
If you have not spent much time training your German Shepherd then I would recommend that you take the time to train it using positive reinforcement training which will be discussed below.
A lack of attention
German Shepherds are working dogs that are meant to spend a lot of time with their owners. If you have not been giving your German Shepherd a lot of attention then it would be likely that it has been annoying you because it wants to get attention from you. This would be particularly likely if you tend to leave it alone for long time periods.
If you do think that it might not be getting enough attention then ways that you could give it attention would include:
- Spending more time giving it exercise
- Spending time training it to do things such as to sit or stay
- Playing games with it such as tug of war
Related post: How to tell if your German Shepherd loves you
You have been reinforcing the behavior
It could be the case that it acts in an annoying way because you have been inadvertently rewarding the behavior.
This would be more likely if your method to get it to stop annoying you is to give it things that it wants such as a treat, toys or attention.
It would also be likely if you punish it physically or by shouting. This can actually be considered as a reward by your German Shepherd since it is actually a form of attention.
Instead, it would be more effective to use positive reinforcement training to get it to behave the way that you want it to.
You get reactive around it
German Shepherds are highly attuned to their owner’s emotions. If you become emotional around your German Shepherd then it will too.
This means that the reason why your German Shepherd annoys you could be that it doesn’t know how else to react when you get agitated yourself when it is giving you attention.
If you want to get your German Shepherd to be more well behaved around you it would help to be calm around it yourself.
As mentioned above, German Shepherds are a breed that are supposed to work alongside their owners. With that being the case, it is in its nature to want to be around you a lot and to be looking to you for direction.
How you can stop your German Shepherd from being annoying
If you want to get your German Shepherd to stop being annoying there are a number of things that you can do.
You can look at the book Training Your German Shepherd on Amazon to get more tips about how you can train your GSD.
Positive reinforcement training
The first thing that you can try is positive reinforcement training. This is where you reward your German Shepherd with things that it likes when it does things that you want it to.
To use positive reinforcement training to get your German Shepherd to stop bothering you it would be necessary to reward it before it starts annoying you, to stop when it starts acting the way that you do not want it to and then to reward it when it begins acting how you want it to again.
Train it to do commands
As mentioned, above German Shepherds are meant to work alongside their owners and they look to them for direction.
If you have not taken the time to train your German Shepherd then it would help to do so by starting with the basics.
Things that you could train your German Shepherd to do would include training it to sit, stay or to play fetch.
I have written about how you can train your German Shepherd to play fetch here.
I have also written about how you can train your German Shepherd to stay here.
Avoid reinforcing the behavior
While positive reinforcement training can be very effective in getting your GSD to behave the way that you want it to, it can also work against you.
It could be the case that you have inadvertently encouraged it to be annoying by giving it things that it wants when it becomes annoying. If your method to get it to stop annoying you is to reward it with treats or toys then it is likely that it has learned to act that way.
Instead, it would help to stop giving it attention when it annoys you, to wait for it to behave the way that you want it and then to reward it when it does what you want it to.
Be calm around it
When training or dealing with your German Shepherd it is important to be calm with it.
It might be tempting to be reactive to it when it is annoying you but it will only worsen the situation. Instead, stop giving it attention, by leaving the room if you have to, and then reward it when it begins to act how you want it to.
Give it lots of exercise
As mentioned above, it is important to give your German Shepherd at least an hour of exercise each day.
You can do this by walking it for an hour, playing fetch with it or you could get a dog walker to do it for you if you don’t have the time.
Give it things to be distracted with
Another thing that you can do is to give it toys that it likes that it can play with instead of annoying you. Things that you could give it could include chews, bones, regular dog toys or puzzles designed for dogs.
It is important not to do this in isolation. Instead, it would be better to train your German Shepherd to be well behaved and to give it toys to be occupied with as well.
Things to consider
There are a number of things that you can consider when trying to understand why your German Shepherd acts annoyingly and how to stop it.
If it changed its behavior suddenly
If your German Shepherd became annoying suddenly then it would be likely that there is a specific cause for the behavior.
If it was a sudden change then it would help to think about what else changed at around the same time that it started to behave in an annoying way.
Things that you could consider would include:
- If you moved home
- If its schedule changed
- If its diet changed
- If someone recently left home or another pet died
When it becomes annoying
It would also help to consider the timing of when it becomes annoying.
If your German Shepherd tends to become annoying at a certain time then it is also likely that there is a specific reason for it.
Possible reasons could include:
- It normally gets a walk at that time
- You leave it alone for a long period at that time
- If it gets annoying right after feeding it or when it has not been fed for a while
Consistency is key
When training your German Shepherd it is important to be consistent with the training.
It is unlikely that you will be able to get a drastic change in its behavior with just one training session.
However, if you continue to train it over the course of weeks and months then it will change its habits and you will be able to get it to behave the way that you want it to.
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Our favorite: The German Shepherd Handbook - Shows you all you need to know to keep your GSD happy, healthy and well-behaved.