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Wag Training 101 - How to train a German Shepherd

25 Aug 2015 | by Neha Manchanda | Posted in: Training


Majestic, bold, confident, charming, intelligent, royal, courageous, independent, loyal and affectionate, that's a German Shepherd for you! Elegance personified, German Shepherd is one of the most intelligent and versatile dog breeds, a reason that also makes it the 2nd most popular dog breed in the world.

One of the key factors that determine how a puppy would grow up to be is primarily based on how much time and effort is invested in the puppy by the respective pet parent especially during the nascent years of their lives. A German Shepherd is a strong protective and territorial instinct that needs to be channeled in a way that does not lead to aggression or a headstrong dominant behavior but leads to a healthy and fruitful relationship between the pup and the family.

Training a German Shepherd

German Shepherd is an astute dog breed and excels when it is learning new tricks and commands. Being a Working Dog breed, German Shepherd requires a training regime that is a mix of obedience and agility so that there are ample amount of opportunities to use their intelligence, high levels of energy and independent thinking in a constructive and gratifying manner.

German Shepherd requires:


Source: Best German Shepherd Training

  • Firm handling – A pet parent will have to establish themselves as a pack leader, an alpha. Submissive handling of a German Shepherd may yield negative results.
  • Early training – Training is a great way to bond with the puppy. Start as early as 8 weeks of age so that the puppy understands and follows a regime.
  • KISS – Keep It Short & Simple is a mantra for training. German Shepherds can get distracted easily and having a short and simple training session can yield positive outcomes. Training can be split into sessions of 15 – 20 minutes during the day. A mix of repetitive and new commands and tricks will keep the pup engaged. 
  • Working Dog activities in training schedule – Whether your German Shepherd will join the forces as a working dog or not, including programs such as fetch, obedience, hiking, running, tracking and the like to the training routine will help keep the pup mentally and physically stimulated. 
  • Early Socialization – German Shepherd tends to be on a guard always and may display their protective instinct if they are not familiarized with people and pets. Early socialization – meeting new people, children, and pets – can help the puppy stay calm and comfortable around new stimulus.
  • Agility training – Agility training is imperative for the overall development of the puppy. Agility is a popular sport where a pup or dog has to clear a variety of obstacles accurately. It is not only a great exercise but helps develop a trust between the parent and the pup and also helps meet the natural instinct to explore and chase.

Paws to pawnder


Source: Alpha Coders.com

  • Start a grooming regime from a young age so that the pup is comfortable with brushing, baths, nail clips, ear cleaning and dental cleaning. It also helps establish trust and a strong bond.
  • Crate training is helpful in establishing a designated play area and sleep area for the pup. It also helps keeping the puppy off the furniture.
  • German Shepherds are impressionable pups and do not do well with rough or aggressive handling. Handle the pup with a firm yet gentle aptitude so that the pup understands that you can be trusted.
  • Rewards for positive behavior help reinforce the training. Whether it is a toy or a treat, keep to with you during training sessions and appreciated and reward for positive behavior. 
  • Regular exercise will help keep the high stamina and strength of the pup under control. It will also keep the pup healthy and busy.
  • As a pup, your German Shepherd will face teething problems and might become destructive. Provide your pup with ample amount of chew toys and teething toys that will ease out the irritation that teething causes. It will also keep your furniture, upholstery, shoes and other things safe!
  • Toilet train from an early age. You will have to be patient when your pup has a few accidents inside the house but keep working with your pup so that he / she understands when to go out. Rewards for good behaviour will reinforce the training.

Your love and care for your pup will help him / her develop into a beautiful, happy and affectionate dog. Afterall, our pups are a reflection of us. If you are a proud parent to a German Shepherd, do write into us and tell us how you trained your pup. We look forward to hearing from you!

About the Author


"An ardent writer, a devoted pet parent and a foodie at heart, I believe life is all about new experiences and expressions"

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