Why Does My German shepherd Circle Me? What It Means and How to Stop It

Why Does My German shepherd Circle Me?

German shepherds are masculine, medium-sized dog breeds that make awesome family pets. Additionally, these animals will portray various behaviors which will amuse their owners.

And one of the behaviors that most people see is their German shepherd circle them. Have you seen such behavior? If so, I know you were left with more questions than answers as to why your German shepherd dog circles you.

So, Why Does My German Shepherd Circle Me?

Well, your German shepherd may circle you for various reasons. One, your dog could be excited, or he has obsessive-compulsive disorder, hence why he can’t stop presenting with that behavior.

Nevertheless, please keep reading to understand why your dog is presenting with such behavior and how to go about it.

Your German shepherd Is Excited

German shepherds will portray excitement in various ways. And one of them is by circling its owner. You know German shepherd are social animals with sweet temperaments, and they love their owners. So, your German shepherd will show how excited it is to see you by circling you around.

Your dog may be excited as it’s about to get its favorite treats, or you want to take to play, and dogs love such treatment

Your German shepherd Wants Your Attention

If you don’t give your German shepherd attention, it will probably demand it. And one of the ways your German shepherd will demand your attention is by circling you.

Perhaps you have been away for a long time, or the dog has been caged for the whole day. Some trained German shepherds will also try to get your attention when there is trouble. They will circle you if there is an emergency that you are not aware of.

Your German shepherd Is Herding You

Captain max von Stephanitz had this one dog in his mind, a dog that would herd, guard, and lastly be a family pet. He got this dog, Hektor, the first dog that had the abilities he desired. And so the German shepherd still retains these herding instincts.

Like the way the German shepherd would herd, this dog will try to herd you by circling you all day without tiring. By such, the dog perceives you as his herd that he needs to control.

Suppose such behavior seems distinguishing to you; source for ways to trim it down. If this dog knocks you by any chance, it may not end up well for both you and the dog.

Your German shepherd has an Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder

Obsessive-compulsive disorder can make your German shepherd circle you. Your dog may have started this behavior, often after a certain occurrence. And what is stated as a joke may become one of the behaviors which can be hard to eradicate.

This compulsive behavior may start for your dog in the case someone close to it punished it, or another dog attacked it

It’s a Behavior You Have Been Rewarding

Dogs are intelligent animals who learn through positive reinforcements. If perhaps you have been giving your dog pats or treats after it circles you, then such behavior will stick.

Thus the dog will know every time it circles you; it will get some treats. Such behaviors, if they have been repetitive, can at times be hard to eradicate.

In the case this behavior is bothering you, you need to stop rewarding your German shepherd when it circles you. It would be best if you said no, and the dog will understand such is unwanted behavior.

Your German shepherd Is Dominating You

German shepherds can show dominance in various ways, and one of them is by circling you. In such a scenario, the German shepherd does not recognize your authority as it has seen a leadership gap.

As you know, dogs like the German shepherds are pack animals, and they thrive where there is direction and leadership. If you don’t take become the leader, your German shepherd will gladly do so.

For example, if you want to leave the house, and the German shepherd doesn’t want that, it will tend to circle you to show its dominance, or in a way to show you need to stop what you are doing.

Separation Anxiety

Separation anxiety is a behavioral issue that can occur in German shepherds. Dog with an anxiety disorder will tend to circle you as they don’t want you to leave them alone at all.

Such dogs have been dependent on you to the point they can’t live alone.

Other signs of separation anxiety include barking, whining, walking in circles or destroying everything.

Your Dog Is Bored

Yes, boredom will cause your German shepherd to circle you every time you are nearby. The German shepherd will circle you in a way to occupy itself, as it doesn’t have anything else to do.

Your German shepherd Is Sick

Vestibular disorders will make your German shepherd circle you all over. If that the case, you need to note when such behavior starts, and you need to notify the veterinary as soon as possible.

What to Do If Your German shepherd Is Circling You

Avoid Encouraging the Behavior

As earlier discussed, encouraging the German shepherd to circle you can make the behavior permanent. You need to know that this behavior needs to stop as soon as possible by not entertaining it at all.

Show disinterest or don’t give your German shepherd a toy or a treat when it starts presenting with such behavior.

What you need to do is redirect the dog to other constructive things. For example, go for a walk or swimming session with your dog.

Give Your Dog Socialization Skills

Your dog needs to see you as its leader. And if your dog doesn’t see you as the leader, it will overrun your authority. What you can do is learn to take the leading role in your house and don’t let your German shepherd take you as its servant.

By doing so, your dog won’t herd you or control you in the house.

Take Your German shepherd To a Veterinary

A veterinarian will help diagnose whether your German shepherd has a disease like canine vestibular disorder that may cause your dog to circle you. The vet will pose lots of questions to check when such a behavior started.

If it’s not a serious issue, the vet will recommend seeing an animal behaviorist with your dog.

The animal behaviorist will check why this dog is presenting with such behavior and how it can be controlled.

Don’t Punish Your German shepherd

If you note your German shepherd is circling, you don’t punish it. Punishing a dog by either kicking it or throwing things at it has never solved any issue. Doing so will make the behavior you want to eradicate more permanent.

Also, don’t shout or reprimand your dog when you note it is circling you all over.

Related Questions

German shepherd Signs of Affection

Here is how you can know your German sheer loves you

  • Your dog like staying close to you
  • The dog always follows you
  • The German shepherd is always excited when you arrive
  • The German shepherd love sleeping or leaning on you
  • Your German shepherd is always asking for tummy rubs

Why Does My German shepherd Urinate When It Circles Me?

German shepherd will circle and urinate if it’s happy. The dog could also be scent marking.

Final words

Hoping you have a clear view of why the German shepherd is circling you. This behavior is often evident in German shepherds who are excited or those German shepherds who feel they need to guard you.

Now on to you, does your German shepherd present with such behavior?

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