I know not once or twice that you have seen your German shepherd grab your arm. And most probably, it’s becoming a concern for you, as your German shepherd won’t stop grabbing your arm.
Since dogs can’t have verbal communication with human beings, they will often use body language to convey certain messages. So why does this happen? Is there a reason for such behavior?
Why Does My German shepherd Grab My Arm?
Your German shepherd may grab your arm if it wants food, attention, affection, when teething or when you have entertained such behavior for long.
Your German shepherd Wants Your Attention
Dogs like German shepherds are tactile beings; they crave attention and love being in contact with us human beings a lot. Furthermore, German shepherds are social animals who love the company of other dogs or human beings.
If your dog feels lonely, it might pull your arm for you to keep it company.
Your German shepherd Is Exploring
Mostly such behavior will be evident in puppy German shepherds. Puppy German shepherds will love mouthing everything they find on their path as a way of exploring their environment. And your hand will not be exempted in their explorations.
You Have Been Enforcing Such Behavior
If you have been encouraging your dog or praising it anytime it grabs your arm, then this behavior won’t stop anytime.
Also, trained German shepherds can display this behavior if not monitored.
Your German shepherd Is Teething
Teething German shepherds often have much discomfort on their gums. And with that discomfort, the puppies will try to put everything in the mouth as they try to relieve the itching. Your dog will try to chew the comers of the tables, shoes, remotes, and your hands.
You Have an Aggressive German shepherd
Grabbing your arm may be a sign of aggressive behavior on your German shepherd. Such is a warning sign that you need to keep a distance as it doesn’t like your presence or dislike what you are doing.
Dogs thrive where there is leadership, and when they note any gap in your authority, they will not hesitate to take the alpha role.
In that scenario, you need to stop that behavior before it becomes hectic to eradicate. You will need to train your GSD that you are the leader, and the behavior of grabbing your arm is not allowed.
Why Does My German shepherd Grab My Arm? What to Do?
When you want to put such behavior to a stop, you will need to understand a few things.
First, when the behavior started, and secondly, explore why your dog is having such a behavior. From then, you can craft ways of putting the behavior to a stop.
Positive reinforcement is the best way to eradicate the arm-grabbing behavior of your German shepherd.
With that, you need to reward the behavior you desire. Unfortunately, rewarding your dog or praising it when it grabs your arm will not help eradicate this bad behavior.
When your German shepherd tries grabbing your arm, show discontentment, put your hand behind your back and show disinterest. Then, reward your GSD when it calms down.
Don’t Overreact When Your German shepherd Grabs Your Arm
Some dog parent’s first reaction when their German Shepherd grabs their arm is jerking or overreacting. Often such a reaction is never a solution. Utmost such a reaction will make the behavior on your dog more permanent. The German shepherd will perceive the overreaction as a way of inviting it to play more.
Exercise Your Dog
German shepherds are high-energy dogs, and they thrive on lots of exercises daily. Utmost, they will need 45-60 minutes of play in a day. If not done so, your German shepherd will try to grab your arm every time it knows there is an obligation you have not fulfilled-exercising it!
Be the Alpha Leader
If your German shepherd doesn’t understand you are the leader, it won’t obey your rules. Hence, ensure you are the leader of the pack to avoid any dominant behavior that this dog can display through arm grabbing.
Talk to an Animal Behaviorist
If nothing seems to work, then it’s time to talk to an animal behaviorist. First, an animal behaviorist will help unearth why your dog is behaving in such a manner. And lastly, the animal behaviorist will help craft ways of putting this behavior to a stop.
Final Thoughts on Why Does My German shepherd Grab My Arm?
A German shepherd will grab your arm for various reasons. One, if the German shepherd wants your attention when teething or when displaying aggressiveness. Such behavior should never be tolerated as the dog can start arm-grabbing strangers who may not take it lightly.
If you are unable to rectify that behavior, you can talk to an animal behaviorist.