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My sister's full-bred German Shepherd attacked my brother in law, totally unprovoked, a few days ago. This dog was doted on, had the best dog food, vet care, went on daily long walks, etc. Well...my father had to drive him to the emergency room for stitches in his hands and forearms. He has bruises on his legs where the dog scratched him. He tried to calm the dog down, but he just kept attacking. He has to take a few days off work because of his dangerously high blood pressure and dealing with this trauma.

They called the vet, and he suggested they put the dog down, which they did last night, to my sister's heartbreak. She stayed for this, helped to hold the dog down, and is just devastated. Why would this happen - out of the blue? The dog was a few years old. He wasn't abused. (He also wasn't neutered). It just seems so unfairs to everyone. Could the dog have gone temporarily insane? Why do dogs do this?

Ted's mom.
 

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OMG how horrible...I feel bad for your sister and BIL. I can't imagine what would have provoked the dog, but the only thing that comes to mind is breeding issues?
 

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What an awful situation all the way around.

Are they have an autopsy performed on the dog? They may find their answers there. Maybe the dog had a brain tumor or something else wrong with it.

I'm sorry for them. :(
 

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Thank you. I doubt they will have an autopsy done as they really don't have the extra money. I can vouch that the dog got the best of food and vet care, but you have to draw the line at some point. I imagine they will have him cremated. All of this will be extra cost they didn't expect the way it is. Goes to show you really need to put a little money aside for pet emergencies like this.

The breeder is a reputable person, and they paid $1,000 for the dog. Unbelievable.

I am just dumbfounded and hope I never have to go through something like this with my dog. My sister is totally traumatized.

Ted's mom
 
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How sad. Seems there had to be some medical or behavioral issue to cause that reaction. I hope your BIL is OK.
 

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Unless there is a medical reason, there was more than likely any number of signs leading up to this. .. could be lack of socialization, lack of training, resource guarding, could be territorial guarding, and on and on.


I'm sorry this happened.. hopefully your BIL heals quickly, physically and mentally.
 
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Tedsmom said:
My sister's full-bred German Shepherd attacked my brother in law, totally unprovoked, a few days ago. This dog was doted on, had the best dog food, vet care, went on daily long walks, etc. Well...my father had to drive him to the emergency room for stitches in his hands and forearms. He has bruises on his legs where the dog scratched him. He tried to calm the dog down, but he just kept attacking. He has to take a few days off work because of his dangerously high blood pressure and dealing with this trauma.

They called the vet, and he suggested they put the dog down, which they did last night, to my sister's heartbreak. She stayed for this, helped to hold the dog down, and is just devastated. Why would this happen - out of the blue? The dog was a few years old. He wasn't abused. (He also wasn't neutered). It just seems so unfairs to everyone. Could the dog have gone temporarily insane? Why do dogs do this?

Ted's mom.
Dog's that are well trained, socialized and cared for rarely do this without a medical reason and there probably is one they will never know. The repeated attacking I think points directly to a medical issue. GSDs are a breed that can be prone to brain tumors and a sudden unprovoked behavioral change in a dog this young could have been caused by something like that. I hope it the BIL recovers and I hope that the family is not soured on dogs because of this.
 

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There are some dogs that have extreme seemingly unprovoked aggressive episodes due to a seizure disorder - and the seizures do not always look like a classic seizure and go un-noticed until later.

It's a weird disorder and many people do end up putting the dog down because there is little predictability. One of our vets recently told me that while she's read about several cases - she's only seen 1 in her practice in the last 20 years.
 

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I am so sorry to hear about that.

My mom's German shepard did a similar thing to her brother. This was years and years ago. They had the dog from when he was puppy. Very well taken care of and well feed and everything. Suddenly out of the blue he behaved in a similar manner towards her brother. The dog was fairly old at the time...12-13 years old. He had NEVER behaved in that manner before. My grandparents had him put to sleep. This happened like 35-40 years ago...I imagine veterinary care was not as good as it is today. They never knew why he did it. Assumed it was related to old...it was really devasting to them all. :(


I pray your sister and brother in law can get through this and aren't turned off about owning dogs...
 

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I'm very sorry to hear this. We had a German Shepherd growing up who was somewhat aggressive and unpredictable, although she never bit. Finally, when she was about 14 or so, she bit a jogger who got between her and me. By that point she was mostly blind and deaf, and we assumed that she was confused and protecting me.

It's hard to say what happened here. Maybe a medical problem. Maybe there were signs of escalating aggression that the family either didn't see or were unwilling to see. In any event, it's terrible.
 
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