If your German Shepherd is behaving in a naughty way you’re probably wondering why and what you can do about it. This post will give you a number of reasons why and will show you what to do to stop it.

So, why is your German Shepherd being naughty? Key reasons include a lack of exercise and not having received enough training. Other causes include boredom, being in a new location, teething, separation anxiety and that you have inadvertently been rewarding the behavior. 

And, what can you do to stop it? To get your German Shepherd to stop being naughty the first thing to do is to make sure that it is getting lots of exercise. In addition to that, it will be necessary for you to give it lots of training starting with the basics and then building up to harder tasks. You can also give it lots of toys to keep it occupied or you could consider getting help from a dog behaviorist. 

It can actually help a lot to take the time to consider why your German Shepherd might be misbehaving since it will make it much easier to stop.

Possible reasons why your German Shepherd is naughty

Exercise

German Shepherds are a breed that was bred to do energy-intensive tasks for hours daily. This means that they require a lot of exercise to be properly stimulated. If they don’t get it then they can become hyperactive and less willing to listen to you.

If your German Shepherd is being naughty then this is more likely to be the cause. If you think that your German Shepherd might not be getting enough exercise then it is important that you make sure that it does.

Related post: Ways to exercise your German Shepherd.

Training

If you haven’t been giving your German Shepherd much training then it will be much less likely to listen to what you’re telling it to do. German Shepherds do not understand the meaning of words naturally so if you have not taught it what “come” means then it won’t know what to do when you say it. This is why it’s important for you to take the time to train your German Shepherd to do the things that you want when you tell it to.

Boredom

The reason that your German Shepherd is being naughty could be because it is bored. If your German Shepherd is not getting much stimulation in the form of attention, training and exercise then it will cause it to become less well behaved.

Related post: How to tell if your German Shepherd loves you

Attention

It could be that the reason that your German Shepherd is behaving that way is because it is looking for attention. If your German Shepherd isn’t getting much attention then it could have learned that the best way to get it is to misbehave. If this is the case then you can try ignoring the behavior (unless it’s destroying something) and then rewarding it when it behaves with your attention.

Fear

The cause of your German Shepherd being naught could be that it is fearful of something and being naughty is its way of coping with it.

Related post: Why is my German Shepherd afraid?

Location

If you can get your German Shepherd to listen to you in one location but not in another then it is not an unusual occurrence. German Shepherds (and other dogs) don’t always carry their training well into new locations.

The different distractions that it has in the new environment can be too much for it to remember what you wanted it to do before. Your best option here would be to train it again in the new environment as you did in the old environment.

You’ve been rewarding it

It could be that you have been inadvertently encouraging the behavior by giving it something that it likes to get it to stop. If you have been doing this then it will have learned that being naughty gets it the things that it wants so it does it more.

It’s teething

If your German Shepherd is still young then it could be going through the teething stage where it naturally wants to chew things. To prevent it chewing on things that you don’t want it to you will need to train it not to by following the tips in the video below and to give it lots of toys to chew on instead.

Separation anxiety

It could be that your German Shepherd has separation anxiety. This is where it doesn’t like being left without you and it causes it to become anxious. Signs that this is the case would be that it gets destructive while you are away, gets anxious when it sees that you are about to leave or if it acts strangely while you are away.

Related post: Why is my German Shepherd so anxious?

How to get your German Shepherd to stop being naughty

Train it

If you want your German Shepherd to stop being naughty then it will be necessary for you to give it lots of training.

If you haven’t trained it before then it will be necessary for you to start with the basics such as to teach it to sit and stay. Teaching it things like that is important because it will help you to get your German Shepherd to stop being naughty when it does.

After you have taught it simple things you can progress on to teaching it harder things like to come to you on command.

If your German Shepherd is being naughty then it will likely be trying to destroy things. You can train it to stop doing this directly by doing lots of spontaneous “leave it” training whenever it starts being destructive.

You can watch the video below to see how.

You can look at the book Training Your German Shepherd on Amazon to get more tips on how you can train your GSD.

Exercise

The next thing that you will need to do is to give it lots of exercise. By doing this you will be able to reduce its boredom and hyperactivity and make it less likely to misbehave.

An easy way to give your German Shepherd a lot of exercise is to teach it to play fetch. By doing this you will be able to get your German Shepherd to do a lot of running over a short time span and it will wear it out effectively.

Reduce its ability to be naughty

You can also take measures to prevent your German Shepherd from being able to be naughty. You can do this by keeping it away from things that you don’t want to be destroyed, preventing it from being able to escape and by giving it lots of toys to keep it occupied.

Crate training

If your German Shepherd is being naughty while you are not able to supervise it then you could consider doing crate training.

You can watch the video below to see how.

Get help

If you are unable to get your German Shepherd to stop being naughty then you should consider getting help from a dog behaviorist. They will be able to diagnose what is causing your German Shepherd to behave in that way and they will be able to give you tailored advice on how to deal with it.

Things to consider

It might be tempting to punish your German Shepherd for misbehaving but it has a tendency of backfiring. If you get your German Shepherd to stop being naughty by punishing it then it will actually think that it is being punished for the last thing that it did which is coming to you and not what you’re actually punishing it for. Other problems are that it can cause it to become untrusting of you, it can make it less responsive to your command and it can lead to it becoming aggressive.

When you’re training your German Shepherd to stop being naughty it’s important that you are patient. Getting your German Shepherd to change its habits is not something that you will be able to do easily in one training session.

Instead, it will require you to train it on a consistent basis over a long time period so that you can change its habits and get it to remember its training.

Related Questions

Why is my German Shepherd being naughty all of a sudden? If your German Shepherd has started to be naughty suddenly then it could be due to a recent event that has caused it to change its behavior.

Maybe you have recently moved, or it has recently lost a friend or had a change of owner. It could also be that it is injured or ill and it is causing it to become frustrated in which case you should take it to the vet. It might also be that you haven’t been giving it enough exercise lately and it is causing it to become hyperactive.

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