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Thread: Should I get a German Shepherd?

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  1. #1
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    Should I get a German Shepherd?

    I need help deciding whether or not to get a German Shepherd. Can anybody help? I'll tell you a little bit about me, and any GSD owners out there can help me decide!

    I have a large house with a large dog run and a big front porch attached to the run which my dog loves to go under for shelter. A previous dog, unfortunately, was able to dig her way out of the dog run - and I live on a busy street, so you can imagine what happened. So I can't have a digger.

    I love my Sheltie, Jake, because he's an extremely quick learner and very obedient, and a lot of fun to play catch with. But he's kind of lazy and a walk with him is more like a "drag". He would walk a burglar right through the house, and he hates car rides!

    I'd like a dog as smart and obedient as Jake, who will play catch and frisbee but who won't welcome an intruder. Jake worships the ground I walk on - and I'd like to have another dog with that quality!

    I do live in town, and I've heard that GSDs can be very territorial. While I would never let a dog out with a leash, my biggest worry about getting a GSD is that he would get out and bite somebody.

    Any thoughts? Questions? Advice?

  2. #2
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    Sorry about the typo - I meant I'd never let a dog out WITHOUT a leash! Oh - and I want a dog who loves car rides.

  3. #3
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    Yes, a GSD would be perfect for you, except that they do not get along with other dogs. Lady doesn't really dig much, and she hates other dogs. Actually, I think you could get them to get along, and since the GSD is the one coming into Jake's territory, and the GSD doesn't really have anything to defend. They also can be very "playful", and defensive about their toys and stuff. Here's the search results from Google that you can take a look at to see some other traits and stuff.

    http://aolsearch.aol.com/dirsearch.a...hepherd%20Dogs

    Hope that helps, I love searching for stuff!
    • Brittany (noun) - Brit-knee = Just a girl that loves her kitties.


    My furfamily (from top left, clockwise): Malley (age 10- "the Eldest"); Oreo (age 10 - "the Subway Jared of Cats");
    Bandit (age 6 - "the Sweetie"); Missy (age 3 - "the Scaredy-Kat"); *Rocky (age 2 - "the Baby"); & *Sophia (age 4 - "the Princess").
    And of course I can`t forget my beta fish, *Regulus, who is almost two years old!
    { * = my fur(and fin)babies; the others belong to my parents/sister but are of course part of the family! }

    RIP Lady, Sally & Floppsy. You will always be remembered; Mommy misses you!

  4. #4
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    Waltham, MA, USA
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    Actually, German Shepherds can get along FINE with other dogs, FloppsyLadySally89 is just speaking about her own experience. I know plenty of Shepherds, and Shepherd mixes, who get along with other dogs. It all depends on the individual dog, and how the socialization - and the introduction - goes. In fact, if you work with a GSD Rescue organization, they can always tell you if the dog you want gets along with other dogs or not!

    And a Shepherd does sound like a good match for what you want in a new dog!

  5. #5
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    Re: Should I get a German Shepherd?

    Hello, stacwase.

    GSD need excerize, and any dog can dig.
    When I was growing up we had 3 GSD's.
    and one that was quiet an escape artist.
    You need to make sure your dog run and front porch
    is escape proof for any dog.
    GSD are territorial and can be very protective.
    Some GSD are dog domiant, but if you
    choose carefully there is no reason why
    your GSD can not get along nicely with your sheltie.
    Chose a breeder very carefully or go through
    a reputable rescue that knows their dogs and
    will match the perfect rescue for your household.

    We have a few GSD owners on this list, I am
    sure they will have great advice for you.
    Training is a must too, GSD are usually very
    easy to train and their quite smart.


    ----<---<--<{(@

  6. #6
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    Never has the Last word.
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    Is he/she going to be outdoors only? I think you could do well with a GSD or a mix. We have quite a few GSD parents in here and they are advocates of the breed. I have never met a GSD that I didn't like.
    I have a golden that is very protective and territorial herself. Which is unusual I think for a golden. But she doesn't like it when anyone messes with her mommy! Which is fine by me b/c I am single and live alone.
    What area of U.P are you in? My parents have a cottage in the lower part of Mich. In Grayling, and my uncle has a cottage in the UP. We are going up there over my birthday, in OCT.
    Keeganhttp://www.dogster.com/dogs/256612 9/28/2001 to June 9, 2012
    Kylie http://www.catster.com/cats/256617 (June 2000 to 5/19/2012)
    Kloe http://www.catster.com/cats/256619
    "we as American's have forgotten we can agree to disagree"
    Kylie the Queen, Keegan the Princess, entertained by Kloe the court Jester
    Godspeed Phred you will be missed more than you ever know..

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Long Island, NY, USA
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    Here's the ratings on what I got out of my dog encyclopedia.

    German Shepherd Dog

    Energy Level***
    Exercise Requirements****
    Playfulness**
    Affection Level***
    Friendliness toward dogs*
    Friendliness toward other pets***
    Friendliness toward strangers**
    Ease of training*****
    Watchdog ability*****
    Protection ability*****
    Grooming Requirements**
    Cold tolerance***
    Heat tolerance***
    (rated from 1(bad) to 5(good))
    • Brittany (noun) - Brit-knee = Just a girl that loves her kitties.


    My furfamily (from top left, clockwise): Malley (age 10- "the Eldest"); Oreo (age 10 - "the Subway Jared of Cats");
    Bandit (age 6 - "the Sweetie"); Missy (age 3 - "the Scaredy-Kat"); *Rocky (age 2 - "the Baby"); & *Sophia (age 4 - "the Princess").
    And of course I can`t forget my beta fish, *Regulus, who is almost two years old!
    { * = my fur(and fin)babies; the others belong to my parents/sister but are of course part of the family! }

    RIP Lady, Sally & Floppsy. You will always be remembered; Mommy misses you!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Location
    Upper penninsula Michigan
    Posts
    2,021

    Thank you!

    Thank you, everybody, for your helpful responses!

    The dog would be indoors 75% of the time. My husband has a cat - do you think that if I got a GSD puppy and raised it with the cat, it would do OK?

    I've thought that getting one from rescue would be a good idea, since I'm not particularly into puppies. I like dogs a lot but puppies are a lot of work.

    Any suggestions on reinforcing a dog run to prevent digging? Maybe pounding posts into the ground close enough together that the dog couldn't dig out? Not that he/she would be out that much anyway.

    When I was a kid, a stray German Shepherd adopted my little sister. She was a preschooler at the time. I don't know why, but he became very attached to her. Once he saved her life by pushing her out of the road just before a car would have hit her. He was the best dog I ever met.

    Unfortunately, my parents weren't into dogs and never built him a fence or brought him in at night. He guarded our house, and wouldn't let anybody into our yard after dark - including my dad and me! I don't know if he didn't have a sense of smell or what, but he just didn't recognize us at night. Because of that, my parents had him put to sleep.

  9. #9
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    Re: Thank you!

    I would think that a puppy raised with the house cat
    would be just fine. Dogs seem to know the difference
    between a cat that belongs in thier home than
    one off the street.

    Even a rescue might be ok. (than you would not
    have to worry about all the destructive stages
    of puppy raising.)
    A reputable rescue group knows all about
    the personality of the dog they are placing,
    and would know which of their dogs are suitable to
    be places in cat home.

    I have never had to reinforce a dog run,
    but maybe these ideas might help.
    Might be a bit expensive, but you can put in a
    cement floor in, that would definitley prevent
    any digging, even a partial cement floor around
    all sides would work. Another idea, is to remove about a
    foot of dirt, and put in a chain link floor in,
    (connecting the chain link floor to the sides
    of the chain link)
    Than put back the dirt over the chain link floor, and put
    pea gravel over on one end and grass on the other end.
    I bet their are web sights that you can find on how
    to build a kennel/dog run to give you ideas.


    ----<---<--<{(@

  10. #10
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    Aug 2002
    Location
    Upstate NY
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    If a dog is raised, breed, socialized and traines properly yes they can get along with other dogs & cats. My gsd mix loves other dogs. If you get one from a rescue they can tell you if it gets along w/ dogs & cats & if it is a digger, likes car rides etc... KYS had some good ideas to help prevent digging, the main reason most dogs dig is either due to boredom (lack of excersize & mental stimuli) or to find a mate, so if you have your dog neutered & provide obedience training, excersize & a job it should be fine. As far as liking car rides just work slowly with the dog and have good experiences only in the car (see my reply to the "I have a howler monkey for a dog" under the dog behavior section). Also by getting one from a rescue you are saving a life!! Good luck.
    Soar high & free my sweet fur angels. I love you Nanook & Raustyk... forever & ever.


  11. #11
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    Maybe I won't have to worry about digging, then - since he/she wouldn't be outside long enough to get bored, and I definitely would have it spayed/neutered!

    I always hear things about dogs "needing a job". What does everybody mean when they say that? I mean - his job would be to love and to be loved, and to protect us. But that's not something he'll be occupied with 24 hours a day. Is there something else?

    Thanks again, everybody, for your responses.

  12. #12
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    Aug 2002
    Location
    Upstate NY
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    A job is a dutie or activity generally done everyday. Like agility, obedience, hearding, flyball or tricks. My dogs can fetch items by name, turn off & on lights, carry the recycling box, open the fridge etc... so I make them help me out around the house. I also give them a command for almost everything, when they want to be petted they have to lie down, if they have to eat I make them sit etc...
    Soar high & free my sweet fur angels. I love you Nanook & Raustyk... forever & ever.


  13. #13
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
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    md
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    5

    GS Dogs

    I have a GSD mix. I also have 2 other dogs that are younger than her. At first, she didn't like the idea of other dogs in the house, but after a while she was in love with them. She needed her own time, as any animal, or person does. My relatives have cats, and since she didn't get a early start with cats, she is very scared of them. It's best to get a young dog, or an older dog that has been raised with cats and other animals. They are very protective dogs. One day, a man was trying to break into our house, and my GS mix scared him away. If my friends are behind me and my dog thinks they are going to attack me, she will attack them first. I know that sounds like a mean dog, but it is for my protection. She doesn't like anything bad happening to her family. She is 8 years old, and has never tried to jump the fence, or dig. She is a very obediant dog. Whatever you tell her to do, she will do, and no, she didn't have classes. She was also potty-trained within the first week we had her. Mostly all dogs dig, but that's a natural instinct. I hope that has helped you some.

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