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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Could use some advice...

So Annie is 13 months this week (goes fast!). In most all respects, she has been a dream dog for me. Very patient, affectionate, great ball drive and nice, full (but undeveloped) grips on tugs. Crazy swimmer, happy dog, strong prey drive, kennels in kitchen at day and in bedroom at night (never really alone for any length of time). Stable with loud noises, generally ignores them, no fears of anything that I have seen. Have not done much ob beyond the basics due to time and (honestly) spending more time goofing around with her in the context of fetch/ob, etc...but I think in essence this has allowed her to develop out well in terms of her own personality. Absolutely submissive to me and my wife, though velcro'ed to me (100% of her training/play and most of her food,etc. comes from me). Not a soft dog re: corrections, particularly in drive. But an eager-to-please dog. Informed folks around her love her to death, want me to breed her (I'm not).

This is a nit with a first dog from working lines, but temperamentally, she's a golden retriever. Loves people, loves dogs, loves kids, loves the vet, loves strangers. Goes ears down and "licky" when she's greeted. She can be aloof on walks, will totally ignore everything when she's in a down for a ball (including other dogs coming up to her, etc.). Will do some deep barks in the backyard at passing dogs but I have never seen any aggression towards anything. She does seem to be very aware of our kids when we're outside. Dead quiet in most every situation (biting tugs, car, etc.) except for some occasionally excited yips I can get when she's on backtie or standing on a rock wall I have facing me at eye level (hard to explain, we run back and forth and play fetch, she gets quite revved up). I have heard her growl once since she was a puppy...a few weeks back at the off-leash area in Mpls...I was dumb and playing tug with her, she growled on a fat lab that had been walking with us and swimming with her. Ended as quickly as it began, first time she has shown possessiveness like that.

Is her temperament set? She's currently intact and went through her first heat two months ago. I am wondering if she will develop out people aloofness and a bit more of an "alert" mode around strangers. Right now she'll get revved when somebody's at the front door but it's more excitement than any concerns about territory.

I don't want to look a gift horse in the mouth...I would have been in a lot of trouble with a harder/more difficult dog the first time around, and I picked Annie specifically because of the reputation her mother's lines had for temperament and her father's nice lines for work (as I understood both at the time). But wondering if I might expect any more aloofness to come along, or anything else over the next few months.

Still unsure about longer-term training goals, by the way. I like Sch and all the ring sports but it's tough to justify that investment of time right now (with the kiddos, 2 and 3). Just doing my own thing re: bitework, etc. and trying to fold in stuff as I learn and see and read. No plans for PP training though I would like to train a nice B&H.
 

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13 months is still really young.You wont know for sure until maybe 3.It varies with different bloodlines.
I would guess that she has more than what you see now as far as seriousness goes.Later on you can bring it out more if you wish.JMO

Greg
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Greg Long said:
Later on you can bring it out more if you wish.JMO
I tend to think you're right...she can switch focus on a dime, is quite flexible and sound, just not sure how much I want to bring out. That's the other major reason why I've not committed to a sport, and would not do PP. Still trying to figure that out based on my own meager capabilities, just having fun for right now.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Greg Long said:
13 months is still really young.You wont know for sure until maybe 3.It varies with different bloodlines.
I guess I had it in my head that a straight German (i.e., from former West Germany) female from working lines would fully mature around 2-ish? And that DDR and Czech lines were slower to mature, particularly males? And no idea about KNPVish lines....

I had assumed Annie was "West" German (sire pedigree): http://www.pedigreedatabase.com/gsd/pedigree/60028.html
(dam's sire)
http://www.pedigreedatabase.com/gsd/pedigree/123666.html

Thought Troll and Goliath and Ahron were West-ish, could be wrong? All new to me.

Anyway, any additional thoughts on experiences with temperament changes during 12-36 month range apprecaited...
 

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Very interesting ped.There is some DDR blood in there through Don Rolandsteich.

Generally I think 18 months is the minimum for mental maturity and I have seen some dogs not fully mature till 3 to 4 years.

Alot can happen in 4 or 5 months.not saying that what you see is the actual personality of the dog.

I personally believe that dogs can act totally different with a different handler.

Fero is in there a couple of times.Very sporty :p Overall a nice ped IMO.

So youve got west and east and north and south bloodlines....it looks like a GSD to me. :wink: Dont worry so much.


Greg
 

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Ditto with Greg!
Thunder ( W/GermanxCzech) was allmost two before I started seeing his tempement mature. Still very social with anyone he knows but standoffish with those he doesn't.
He's also has a Golden Retriever attitude around family and poeple he's introduced to properly.
Cujo comes to mind if you happen to be at the wrong place at the wrong time.
As a rule (not always) you wont see as much change in a female.
 

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As a comparison, my Jak is almost 15 months old and pretty much the same way as far as temperament is concerned. He's Czech/DDR with some West German as I understand. He loves people, and does exactly what you described Annie as doing - ears back and 'licky.' He has yet to bark at anyone other than the helper during training, though he does bark at passing dogs when he's in his kennel and they go trotting up the road and/or stop to take a whiz on my bushes or mailbox. And lastnight, when Gypsy started her "oof"ing and going from window to window (over nothing), he got interested, perked up, and barked, so I know he's got it in him. :wink: I'm not expecting much out of him right now as far as protection or anything, because his temperament is so much like his mother's, and also because he's never actually been threatened. I look for his aloofness and protective instincts to come out within the next 1-2 years.
 

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I am around Fero dogs on a regular basis, nice dogs, like Greg said, Sporty :lol: but they are for Schutzhund so it's ok.... I have no doubt that they would kick my ass though, but it takes training unless you have a dog with a natural killer instinct (like Selena's dogs.. right Selena? :lol:).

She won't change much temprementally with age, but her view on things will change a little, she will learn to be more serious and protective, especially with training, it doesn't take much to train an alert. She sounds like a cool dog, alot has to do with how you raise the dog too, she would be a different dog if she was an outdoor kennel dog only let out to train and run the field. She's being raised in a family environment and seems to have merged well, that stuff will stick with her and that's the stuff that counts the most.
 

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I've always understood GSDs to be slow to mature, much like some of the big warmblood (or in some cases, DUMBblood :lol:) horses that I've dealt with so extensively (particularly Hanoverians :roll:) . Perhaps all of the big, German-bred animals have that in common? Hell, you're even supposed to go easy on their cars up until a certain number of miles! :lol:

But I digress...

There's no doubt in my mind that Dominic is going to mature slowly, much like you've described Jak, Thunder, and Annie. With what I've seen from him so far and what I know of his bloodlines, I'd be shocked :eek: if I saw a huge change overnight. He's not overly friendly and looking for a belly rub from everyone we see, mind you, but he's not exactly aloof or sharp, either. Just sort of big, dopey puppy when we're out and about, with the exception of an occasional bark or (rarely) growl that surprises him more than it does me! :lol: #-o

Jaeger, on the other hand, seemed to mature before he was even out of that cute puppy stage. While he has always allowed non-threatening strangers to approach if I've said it's okay, he's always been what I'd call "aloof", never looking for attention from anyone but me and a few close friends. He was never the "ears down, licky, licky" type. And if I didn't say it was okay for someone to approach, even when he was young...watch out. He took it upon himself to guard our apartment when he was only about 6 months old; and at 3 1/2, he hasn't changed much. Still watchful and standoffish, but tolerant. The only difference I've seen is that he's starting to mellow a little...he'll actually lay down before 11:30pm!

I'm guessing Jaeger's personality type and maturity rate is fairly uncommon? His protective instinct is certainly not something I TRIED to bring out in him when he was so young (although I'm not complaining)...it was just there.
 

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My Blaster is Czech and I contacted Hanna Leena about what to expect as far as maturity goes.If anyone should know she should.She knows more about Czech dogs than anyone I can think of and she still coowns Blaster's sire Brit Z Elisu.
Anyway she said he may still be maturing at 4 years but will act young well into old age.She said the defense will be there and to be patient.
He is 15 months old now and acts very much like a pup.He doesnt show much suspicion but if you really want to fight he will accomodate you. :p
 

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Woody, I'm certainly still quite new to working dogs, but if your pup was super serious at not even 4 months, I'd be surprised. She's a young pup afterall, so keep enjoying that! I'm sure at least a little aloofness will develop. Zoso's temperament has changed a bit over the last 6-8 months as he's about 20 months old now. More self-assured, confident, and more thoughtful and not quite as "doofy," though he'll always be on the goofy side. Keep on keeping on in the socialization and she'll be fine.

I took Zoso to the little local Renaissance festival after Schutzhund practice this last weekend and he was a little bewildered at why people with weird clothes on were whacking each other with sticks, but did fine otherwise. It was kind of nice to see how they hired a "security officer" who had a GSD/wolfdog (?!?!) as a "security dog" who was less well behaved on an e-collar than my young dog was on a flat buckle, let alone okay around the tons of kids around. :D No idea what that guy was thinking...Any oddball place you can bring her before 18-24 months is great.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Maren Bell said:
I took Zoso to the little local Renaissance festival after Schutzhund practice this last weekend and he was a little bewildered at why people with weird clothes on were whacking each other with sticks, but did fine otherwise.
I have the same problem with Renaissance festivals. Not as bad as Furry conventions, but I don't think I've ever been to anything more depressing than a Renaissance festival in Oklahoma. Yeesh. Funny, just not ha-ha funny.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Mike Schoonbrood said:
I am around Fero dogs on a regular basis, nice dogs, like Greg said, Sporty :lol: but they are for Schutzhund so it's ok....
Hah, is "Sporty" shorthand for "chicken$hit?"
 

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It sounds like you have a great dog. Don't worry about whether she bites, barks, growls, etc. In all honesty, it is SOOOOO unlikely you will need her to bite someone, that it doesn't matter!

The fact that she will get older means that she'll be a bit more territorial, a bit less playful. But if she's really, really playful and nice right now, you can expect pretty much the same later on. Her drives can be promoted, and she'll thus have them handy for your sporting wishes! Obviously, If it ain't broke, don't fix it.

If you want a PPD, your best bet is to get a serious dog from the start; not to "make" one.

Hah, is "Sporty" shorthand for "chicken$hit?"
Do you think we can't see the "s" under that skinny line????

Moderate yourself, will ya?! :lol: :lol: :lol:
 

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Hi Woody, i couldn't really tell from your post ,
but do you think that a dog needs to be nervous and sharp to be a dog that will fight and bite for real? or to be considered a "serious dog"?
Just curious,
AL
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Al Curbow said:
Hi Woody, i couldn't really tell from your post ,
but do you think that a dog needs to be nervous and sharp to be a dog that will fight and bite for real? or to be considered a "serious dog"?
Just curious,
AL
Nope, not at all. Seriously. Just curious about what may change in my dog, more to be on the watch for it than anything else. I'm perfectly content for what I have out of the gate, she's a great dog and I can't think of a better dog personality for me to learn from. No aspirations beyond learning a lot about her and dogs in general until I figure out what the heck I want to do.

I'd love for her to be more people aloof, but the alternative would be a lot worse in my situation. Make any sense?
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Andres Martin said:
If you want a PPD, your best bet is to get a serious dog from the start; not to "make" one.
Definitely no interest in a PPD. I get it as a real need for some folks, an interesting diversion for those whose lifestyles can support it, and as a huge mistake for a few others. I couldn't have one in my house. Way beyond my capabilities and just not something I'd feel comfortable having around. Alerting and showing aloofness is about as much as I'd ever want from a dog that's around my little terriers (the toddlers) and the neighbors.
 
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