German Shepherd Dashing Out The Door

Door Dashing Like They’re In The Olympics How To Stop Your GSD Taking Off

Is your German Shepherd troubling you by being a door-dasher?

A door dasher GSD will become very troublesome as it will try to escape every time guests arrive at home. It is a natural instinct of a GSD to run to the other side of the door. This happens because many GSDs feel that they are in the wrong place and they have the urge to dash out the door.

German Shepherd Owners Guide
German Shepherd Owners Guide

Your GSD’s behavior of running out the door whenever someone visits can be very harmful for the dog as it may injure itself. Moreover, it is dangerous for the visitor(s) as well.


Setting a Boundary for Your GSD

When you train your dog to stay away from a certain area or room, it might not enter the place in your presence but will try to break the rules in your absence.

This happens because the dog has a curiosity to enter a particular room.

This can cause a lot of problem especially when you open the door for guests or visitors. The dogs that are door dashers usually get overly excited to run out the door. They jump through the door and many times they knock-out a person or two in the attempt.

When the dog escapes outside, it has many threats to its life. It can run into a car or slip on the snow. To put a stop to this behavior in GSDs, one must train to stay in a particular place. The best way to do so is to make use of your body language, voice and hand signals.

GSD Door Dashing

Stopping the ‘Door Dashing’ Behavior

A GSD will dash out the door every time it sees an opportunity.

The outside world seems interesting to dogs and that’s why they want to escape. It might be exciting for the dog to run freely but is extremely dangerous for it. A loose GSD running on the road could scare other people, run into a car, chase or fight with other animals, injure someone, etc.

The best way is to start training your dog to stay inside the home when it is just a puppy. The exercise is simple but requires consistency. Below are the guidelines to train your dog to stay inside the house.

  • Put your GSD on the leash.
  • Tell your dog to sit inside the door while you stand outside it.
  • Hold the leash so that your dog doesn’t escape through the door.
  • With the help of your hand, point towards the door and tell your dog to ‘stay’.
  • Go a little backwards loosening the leash a bit.
  • If your GSD comes forward, stop and step forward and with the help of your hand, tell the dog to ‘wait’.
  • You can also add ‘No’ command when you tell your dog to stop moving forward.
  • If your dog stays inside the door, appreciate it.
  • Offer a treat or a pat on the back will do.
  • Do not tighten the leash to make your GSD stop as it will be a forced attempt from your side to make the dog stay inside the door.
  • After a good wait, tell your dog ‘OK’ and let it move out.
  • Turn backwards again and leave space for the dog to come out.
  • If the dog comes out, turn around and tell it to ‘Wait’.
  • You can also use voice commands like ‘No’ ‘Stop’ and ‘Stay’.

This is an effective exerciser that will train your GSD to stay inside the house or prevent it from dashing out the door without your permission. So, the next time someone leaves the door open, your dog will seek for your permission to run through the door. You can do this to mark different areas of your home that your dog isn’t allowed to enter.

Many owners want their GSDs to stay away from their children’s room or the kitchen. By setting an invisible barrier, you are prohibiting your GSD from entering a room or area that it is not allowed to enter. The training exercise also helps when you take your dog outdoors.

GSD Training

Training Tips

To train your GSD to obey you, you will first need to establish a strong bond with it. Your newly bought GSD pup or dog won’t follow your commands unless it is absolutely comfortable with you. Create a bond with your dog and once it is comfortable around you, start training it to obey you. Below are some tips to make the training process more effective.

  • Do not train your dog when you have visitors around as the dog will get distracted and ignore your commands.
  • Keep your dog on the leash until it’s not fully trained.
  • Keep the dog in a separate room until it learns to stay in the house without escaping through the door.
  • Do not leave your dog without a leash when visitors arrive.
  • Stop your dog immediately if it tries to dash out the door.
  • Use your voice to stop your dog if it is running towards the door.
  • Make sure you have a firm and authoritative voice when you tell your dog to ‘Stop’ OR ‘Stay’.
  • Use positive reinforcement to train your GSD to stay.
  • You can also make your dog learn to stay by putting your hand on the door knob and when your dog tries to move forward, leave the door knob and tell your dog to ‘stop’ or ‘stay’.

Preventative Measures

  • Tell other members of the house to keep the door closed.
  • Build a fence on your home’s boundary so that your dog doesn’t escape.
  • Tell your friends and family to not open the door until you know that the dog isn’t around.
  • Tell your visitors to not leave the door open when they leave or not leave the home until the dog in another room or on the leash.

Who doesn’t like freedom? Your GSD is probably thinking the same way when it sees an open door. Take help from obedience training exercises to prevent your dog from dashing out the door. You can also purchase check our other posts on GSD training.

Last Updated on September 5, 2016 by

4 thoughts on “Door Dashing Like They’re In The Olympics How To Stop Your GSD Taking Off”

  1. My gsd is 3 this year and he can be very well behaved but at times when off the lead he won’t come to me so I can leash him again. He runs around, back and forth but keeping about 2 metres away. If I try to grab him he jumps on the floor flips over and uses his teeth! Dangerous . When I finally leash him he jumps to my side and I am not able to correct him as no slack in the lead! Help

    1. MistressMisery

      I had a male once who was the same way. He thought it was the best kind of fun to have Mom chase him – and I very nearly lost him a couple of times under the wheels of passing vehicles.
      Don’t. Chase. Worst mistake ever. You’ll be at it forever and one or both of you could be hurt. Instead, make sure that your dog sees you, and run in another – safe – direction. Your dog will be powerless to resist his urge to chase you. This is an instinct thousands of years old. Let your dog catch you, then clip on the leash, and don’t go off-leash ever again until you have 100%, all the time, consistent compliance when you call. You can’t guarantee the safety of your dog if you can’t rely on your dog to obey your commands, and it’s better to keep your best buddy on leash than live with loss and regret.

  2. Ruth Wainwright

    I have. 19 month old bitch gsd. She is awful on walks with me just now she almost slipped her halti to get to another dog barking. I’m nervous walking her now. Please help she’s a little better with my husband as he’s more confident but doesn’t have the time I have to walk her. I love her to bits but I’m scared for hers and others safety

  3. I adopted a 5. Year old German Shepard. She spent her life pretty much on a 5. Foot chain. When I take her out on the leash she pulls me. She is very. Very strong.
    I even purchased a choker chain.
    People have said I should buy the choker chain with the prongs. I don’t want her to get hurt. I’ve had her about three months. I have been working on putting up a fence but it’s not done yet.
    And suggestions would be greatly helpful. I love her and want her to be a part of my family but need to get her out of this.
    Thank you

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