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GWP personality
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Keith
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PostPosted: 05/08/03, 2:48 pm    Post subject: GWP personality Reply with quote

I have noticed at least 3 different posters on this forum that have had trouble with GWP aggression. I have owned 6 generations of wirehairs from many different breeders. They are not a breed for everyone. They are a German breed. Like dobermans, rottweilers, schnauzers, german shepherds, weimaraners and dachshunds. Most German breeds by nature are protective. I would say about half of the wirehairs I have owned had this protective nature. These dogs need and thrive on discipline. They need training and structure in their lives. They need to be socialized early and often while growing up. They need to respect you as a trainer. You need to be the alpha male. If you are a real passive person and don't trust your ability to be a firm dog trainer then pick a wirehair very carefully or buy another breed. I have never had any of my dogs bite anyone but I have seen their protective nature many times over the years. I have always had the ability to handle them.
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abbygwp
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PostPosted: 05/08/03, 3:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That is a good point...and my dog is very well trained, in fact she holds a cainine good citizen certificate. However, as an "experienced" owner yourself, you should be willing to help if someone has a question not post in a totally other forum from where the questions are being asked.

While Abby is very protective, she has never been agressive and is just now showing this. Abby is my first GWP, BUT not my first German breed (parents bred and raise Dobies) so I am more than familar with their bloodlines.

Abby is not a domestic GWP, she has VERY strong german lines and very few american.

My husband in fact is the "ALPHA" - she is all the sudden turning against him and I was wondering if this is normal. He has done all the training with the dog and all he needs to do is hand signals and she totally obeys everything...until recently.

As an experienced dog owner yourself, you should share all your infinite wisdom. And obviously after 12 views and not one post....no one seems to know the anwser so I have deleted the post and will consult a real expert...
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Keith
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PostPosted: 05/08/03, 4:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

To be honest I don't know what to say. I wasn't directing my previous message at you in particular. I really hope that future buyers of the breed would be aware of all facets of the breeds personality. I have never heard of a wirehair turning on the person that trained them. It is more common for the dog to protect the trainer against a perceived threat. For whatever reason this dog no longer sees your husband as the top dog. Outside of more strict obedience training between him and the dog I don't know what else would work.
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birddog
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PostPosted: 05/08/03, 5:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I will throw my two cents in here. Since 1920, the GWP breeeder has worked very hard to breed out the 'black' color from the coat of the Wirehair. By so doing and in the process, they have almost totally eliminated the aggression. The color 'black' is closer to the aggressive German bloodlines. You see, in Germany, black is very popular, but along with 'black' comes the aggression. The Germans breed for aggression. Over the past few years, some GWP breeders have started to breed the 'black' back into the AKC GWP simply because they feel they are pretty. However, along with the 'black' coat also comes the aggression. The only way a 'black' could re-surface was to breed to the German VDD or DD dogs which, in some cases, are AKC registered - that breeding generally produces a more aggressive temperament. I see post after post on aggressive Wirehairs today and their color is not necessarily black. Such breedings will also produce the color Liver. "Black" is currently a color of dispute within the Gwp membership. If agreed upon as an acceptable color for the GWP, it will again take many, many years to breed out the aggression.
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Dave
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PostPosted: 05/08/03, 6:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have a black/white GWP and he is the mellowist GWP I've ever owned. I don't agree with your black/aggressive theory. Actually, I visited one of those big name kennels in WI and her liver/white GWP's were growling at us and pretty darn wild. So much for theories.
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birddog
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PostPosted: 05/08/03, 6:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dave, there is always the execption to the rule. But for years when you saw black you just knew it was a DD. Today It has changed. You just don't know anymore. If the accusation you make is true, and your asked to prove it, maybe you'll find that kennel in Wi. was breeding to black? Just an opinion. No need to get hot!
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dualgwp
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PostPosted: 05/08/03, 8:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Now, lets not get nuts here. I'm not so sure anyone can state that Black Wires are more aggresive than any other color in this breed.

There are many, many black and white GWP's registered with AKC, and while we may not see alot of them, I would be very careful making those kind of statements. It's sort of like saying, all black dogs have superiour coast, or dark eyes.... or that all white dogs have bad skin or poor coats. It just does not hold water!

GWp's tend to have a protective nature, some have aggresion problems, and if you are not the type of owner to get and keep it controlled, then you may have problems down the road. It's the nature of the beast. This is not a breed for the feint of heart, nor for people who really want a Golden retriever who will lie passively in front of the fire place. They are demanding, smart, and very active. They will run your life if you allow them to, they will outsmart most owners.

In short, if you think you want a Wire, do your homeowrk, listen to those who have owned the breed for a long (I mean more than one or two dogs) and take what they say to heart.

I don't think color is the issue, good breeding and experience with the breed is!

But, this is just my humble opinion.
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PostPosted: 05/08/03, 11:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I believe the old "Black = aggression" has been pretty much been proven an "old wives tale" by the British breeders of GWPs. In that country, black has always been an acceptable color and they do not have any more aggression in their blacks than with any other color.

AbbyGWP: I'm so sorry you have run into an aggression problem in your dog. Frankly, I believe there are some temperament issues in this breed that don't often get talked about. However, talk to any breeder who has been in the breed for a while, and the chances are they will tell you about one or more dogs they are personally aware of that had to be put down due to temperament issues. I, for one, am glad to see the issue being brought up here as I believe it is bringing to light the fact the problem is more widespread then any of us want to believe. By bringing it up, perhaps we can begin to address it.

I hope you can find an answer for your girl. And please please come back and let us know how you are fairing. I know there are many who are having similar problems maybe they can learn from your experience.

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abbygwp
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PostPosted: 05/09/03, 6:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for all the information..I was not planning to leave the board, I am going to find an experienced trainer that deals with agression issues.

I am in no way thinking about putting Abby down. We have to put a lid on the agression that she is showing to my husband all the sudden. If he was going to be home all the time I would make sure they worked on it together, but he leaves in 2 months and we could get it under control by then but my BIG fear is that with him leaving for 18 weeks, she will go nuts on him when he returns.

Abby is liver roan, so I don't think a black if that has anything to do with it, but I am finding that the more "german blood" the breed has the more agression that comes with it.

She is an absolutely wonderful dog and I have no harsh things to say about the breed, with the execption you do need a strong personality to own one. She is very well behaved, as stated holds strong obedience skills and now seems like she is loosing her mind.

My thoughts on posting were to see if anyone else had this issue.
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Chinchy
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PostPosted: 05/09/03, 7:39 am    Post subject: Black`s Reply with quote

I own 4 Black`s and I am sick of all the bad hype about the Black`s. My male is half D.D. his sire is an imported dog ,no signs of aggression,even though he is half the "dreaded" German breeding. I chose to own hunting dog`s not show dog`s ! I have owned 10 different GWP`s and only had 1 that I had problems with! The problem male was liver& white and in over 40 years of owning dog`s he was the most aggressive dog I ever saw! His breeders were long time GWP breeders and they were the first to tell me to stay away from black! This dog had some very impressive show line`s and I was shown several of his Ch.ancestors in different GWP book`s.They
provided me extended pedigree`s,I think this dog`s main problem was too
many of the same dog`s showed up time after time on his pedigree! The dog`s that were being "inbred" were the most popular show dog`s! This dog became so unpredictable that I had him destroyed!! BIRDDOG Knowing the fact there were no black`s in his extended pedigree what can you blame his aggression on? Your statement that Black causes aggression is not well thought out! By the way in the past 40+ years I have bred, owned & trained several different breed`s including Doberman`s & Rottweiller`s for protection and have never had a dog more unpredictable than that 1 GWP!!
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Butterfly
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PostPosted: 05/09/03, 7:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I posted help for my dog and have been in contact with Cheerio. Jake is a black and white. His father who came straight from Germany is roan and white and his mother is American and she's black and white. We took our Grandaughter with us to see how compatible they were with children. The mother was great. Loving and sweet. All she wanted was for Devon to pet her and she sat right at her feet. The father didn't show any signs of aggression. He was aloof like he didn't care if we were there or not. Jake my GWP on the otherhand does not take to people very well and he is only 10 months old. We are slowly introducing him to people. He seems fine as long as my husband or sons are there. Let people pet him and everything, but when its just me there he's not very friendly. My husband says its like if I'm with him alone he has to protect me. We're working on that but don't know if we'll get this traightened out.
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Keith
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PostPosted: 05/09/03, 9:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Linking color to aggression doesn't hold water. The most mellow wirehair I ever owned was a black and white roan. The most aggressive wirehair I ever owned was solid liver. He had spent the first six months of his life alone in a kennel and was not properly socialized by the person I bought him from. I never put him down but he had to know that I was the MASTER. He didn't respect anyone else. I didn't bring up this issue to scare anyone away from the breed. I love these dogs. But they are a german breed and bring everything to the table with them that other german breeds do. They are highly intelligent, loyal and many are protective of their family. Like dualgwp said, these are not golden retrievers. They require obedience, socialization, and they need to be worked. They are not a good breed to put in a kennel and neglect. That being said, you can find wirehairs that are very mellow and loving towards everyone they meet. But there are just as many that would not hesitate to protect their family if they sensed danger. If you want a mellow pup watch how the parents react to strangers when you go pick your pup out. Pick a pup that runs up to you with tail wagging not a pup that stands at a distance and watches you. Roll them over and hold them on their back and see if they struggle to right themselves. Watch how they react to their littermates and don't pick the dominate puppy. Don't pick the shy fearful pup either.
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dualgwp
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PostPosted: 05/09/03, 9:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

You say Jake is 10 months old? Question... has he always been sort of reserved and suspicious, or is this something new that has started?

The reason I ask.... I see many GWP pups go through a fear period around that age where you swear they have lost their minds. they bark at everything, even if they have been around that "thing" all of their lives, they all of a sudden decide there are people they like or hate... most of them seem to grow out of it with time and patience. But, you can't let them get away with extreme silliness during this stage. They have to learn that wether they like it or not, they will allow people to pet them, they will walk by that "dog eating lawn statue"....Why? Becauseyou told them they must and they have to learn to trust your judgement and leadership.

Some will become very protective at this age, or seem protective, but I think it's fear or lack of judgment at this age more than protectivness.

Be firm, patient and careful. There are some who never outgrow this, and only you will be able to make the decision whether the dogs stays, or goes.

A good obedience class may help, just the socialization he will receive there will benefit him.

Bernee
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J Shelton
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PostPosted: 05/09/03, 10:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ok- what I would like to know, is what do you do EXACTLY when there is aggression shown towards other people (nice people).

Thankfully I have not had any aggressions and hope that I won't. But this being our first gwp and say something happens down the road, what do you suggest?? Ours is a female who is 11 mo. Do you come down on them with a stern "NO" or what?

As far as all this socialization, are you talking about taking them to a park or somewhere where theres lots of people to come in contact with and have them pet them and what not?

I will mention that I did see aggression yesterday, but feel most any dog would have done the same thing give the situation which was:

I took her to a river and at one point she would get stuck in the same spot due to the current holding her back. She would cross to the other side run towards me and and try to cross over again and would get stuck again. There were some nice guys who offered to help her and when one of them tryed, she turned on him. I attribute this to her being probably a little scared cause she couldn't get back to me and then some person she never has seen in her life trys to grab her. Obviously she didn't realize he was there to help. All worked out. I went farther down the river and she again ran to me on the other side and made it back to me. (You may be thinking why didn't I just walk down river----I didn't have the option because you couldn't get thru all the trees and brush so that was our only way out)

Again I don't think that this means shes going to be aggressive, since this was quite an unusualy situation to be in.

Any thoughts about all I've said----
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Keith
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PostPosted: 05/09/03, 10:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

When I say socialization I just mean getting them around a lot of people. Taking them to a park or other public place where they see a lot of children running, playing ball, riding bicycles, people walking their dogs. Eventually they learn to ignore people and not view them as any kind of a threat. Tell them with a firm no if they show any signs of aggression towards people. A community obedience class would be good for a young dog. Where they could learn to ignore other dogs and people. You have to judge your own dog as far as letting people pet them. Some dogs don't like having strangers pet them and never will. But they can all learn to ignore or be indifferent to lots of people around them. Raised in isolation a naturally protective dog can become overly protective.
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