German Shepherds are one of the most loyal, highly intelligent, and trainable dogs out there. As a proof, you can see them in the work line as service dogs, police dogs, guard dogs, dog agility and so much more! They have become the fan favourites of numerous dog-lovers around the world and it’s no surprise why.
One of the major benefits of owning a GSD is their trainability, being very intelligent dogs means they learn commands much faster than most breeds. For any German Shepherd owner, the goal is to turn their doggie into a personal protection dog. Capable of guarding them, warning them of suspicious people, and defending them in dangerous situations.
However, the majority of GSD owners struggle with the German Shepherd attack training, some even struggle to teach them the basics. We believe that it isn’t impossible, and all it takes is using the right methods with the correct mindset. So, we’ve gathered the 9 Secrets for an Effective German Shepherd Attack Training to help you turn your cute doggie into a badass guard dog!
German Shepherd Attack Training
1. Create a Strong Bond
How do you expect to train your dog if there is no foundation of trust and connection between both of you? Therefore, the most important step is to create a strong bond with your German Shepherd. GSDs are very loyal dogs to their owners and if you want to train them, then you will have to establish yourself as the person they trust the most.
Just like any other relationship or social connection, you will need to spend quality time with your German Shepherd to earn their loyalty. Next, there are some things you can add to your day to build this strong bond:
- Be accompanied by your dog company and have them stay in a place where you spend most of your time to make him feel comfortable with you.
- Go on walks because your German Shepherd enjoys them!
- Give him treats and this will warm him up and will get him comfy with you.
- Play with him, sometimes he just wants to have fun!
2. Practice Simple Commands
Many German Shepherd Dog Owners make the wrong decision of skipping the basics and moving right into the most difficult commands. However, everything should always begin with baby steps, small victories, and simple milestones. Likewise, you should never forget to train your German Shepherd with simple commands.
These simple commands will serve as stepping stones for your German Shepherd to build on to reach more complex and difficult commands. It will also greatly help to train your GSD to listen and pay attention to you, especially if it’s their first time. And among the following are some simple commands you can try out:
3. Use One-Word Commands
One big mistake German Shepherd owners make when training their dogs is using long and wordy commands. While the German Shepherd may be a very intelligent dog, this does not mean that they can store and process information as good as humans can. To help keep things short, systematic, and easy for your dog to remember; it is much more advisable to use one-word commands.
Avoid using phrases and sentences to command your dog since this might lead to information overload and it may be too much for the pooch. By using simple one-word commands, not only will they be much easier to follow but it will also allow your GSD to understand a variety of commands. To summarize it, here are examples of phrases you can simplify:
- Stop doing that, Stop
- Come over here boy, Come
- Lay down buddy, Down
- Get off, Off
4. Prepare the Necessary Equipment
Once you’ve got the basics down, then is time for you to use some more advanced secrets for an effective German Shepherd attack training. Next on this list is the importance of preparation. You wouldn’t want to find yourself in the middle of training missing equipment, right?
So, it is in your best interests to equip yourself with everything necessary to ensure that the training goes smoothly and properly. You won’t believe the number of tragedies and fail videos that exists due to the lack of preparation! Be mindful, vigilant, and make sure to get all your things together.
The minimum requirement for an German Shepherd attack training will require at least the following:
- Leash; preferably a strong one with plenty of length to work with
- Collar; a reliable one to help to keep your dog in check
- Treats; for rewards and training purposes
- Full Protection Bite Suit (Optional); for advanced attack training scenarios
- Dog Bite Sleeve Tugs (Optional); in case your dog is very aggressive
5. Reward-Based Training
German Shepherds don’t usually need treats to be trained well, but in the case of GSD attack training – rewarding their efforts will help them distinguish right from wrong easily. Just like you and me, dogs respond well to rewards and will strive their hardest to continue what they’re doing right to keep those treats coming. Through this, your dog will have no trouble learning the “attack” command because of the stimulation you’re giving.
In two- or three-weeks’ time, your pooch might not even need any treats as often as before because he’ll be doing the commands instinctively. At that point, you can cut down on the treats and be able to focus on more advanced settings for training.
6. Setup “Intruder” Scenarios
During intense situations, even the strongest and most courageous of people will freeze up, and even your German Shepherd is no stranger to becoming nervous and lost. And to train them in a somewhat “real-life” situation you will want to have a close friend act as an “intruder” to stimulate your GSD in an actual scenario. This will help your pooch understand the different signs and body language a dangerous person will give off.
The job here though is to make sure that your dog remains calm and will only attack on your command. Be reminded that you should exercise this type of advanced attack training with extreme caution, as it may lead to serious injury when not done right. Make sure that the “intruder” is wearing a Full Protection Bite Suit to keep him unharmed during this exercise.
7. Don’t Rush
People who train their German Shepherds often want too much too fast, and the poor little doggie can’t keep up with all the demands! This isn’t healthy, both for the dog and the owner which is why it is important that you understand the concept of slow and steady. Training your dog isn’t a race and the journey of achieving the result is part of the adventure!
So, don’t rush into things as if you’re striving to be the first or number one, attack training isn’t just for protection but also a means for you to connect with your dog. In fact, this activity might be the reason you fall in love even more with your doggie.
8. Stay Consistent
German Shepherd Attack Training isn’t just a one-time thing, and if you want to reap its rewards of turning your cute little doggo into a trustworthy protection dog, then stay consistent! Don’t just stop after a week or month of training, stay on that path and allot time every day to train and practice commands. When you get into the habit of doing so, it will only become second nature to you in no time.
This is one of the major flaws German Shepherd attack training experiences. Since people aren’t able to commit and maintain the training they begin with, the time spent just goes to waste and they’ll have to start all over again. So, to stop that from happening to you remember to stay consistent and keep on the grind!
9. Have Fun
Last, but definitely not the least: Have Fun! German Shepherd attack training may be for the sole purpose of keeping you safe during dangerous scenarios, but the training aspect still holds true. You and your GSD become closer through the training and having fun while doing so will not only make it more effective but will surely be quite the fun activity you can do every single day.
Funny things can happen and will happen, and when they do – don’t hold back that smile! One, your dog will feel much more comfortable training and even you can laugh about it. Two, training won’t be seen as a necessity but rather as an activity you can share with your beloved German Shepherd.
German Shepherd Attack Training Summary
In summary, German Shepherd attack training is no easy task and requires plenty of preparation, practice, and determination to achieve the result of attacking on command.
There exist a variety of ways to train a GSD to attack and you will need to exercise all of them to get the best results possible out of the training. However, it isn’t for everyone because not only is it hard to do but the owner must remain consistent or else all efforts given would be wasted.
Overall, we should all look back at President Dwight D. Eisenhower’s quote saying, “What counts is not necessarily the size of the dog in the fight; it’s the size of the fight in the dog.”
And if you are up for the task to train your GSD to become quite a courageous guard dog – then it will take effort and teamwork from both of you to achieve your goal.