My New GSD Puppy

Breed specific discussion of your favorite breed.

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Nettle
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Re: My New GSD Puppy

Post by Nettle » Mon Jan 12, 2015 6:37 am

Makes a lot of sense. Good for you that you have done so much research.

Labs are easier than GSDs, even working labs, because their work is so different. Like any breed, they can be hooligans if allowed, but they don't have to be thugs. I think a trip back to lab rescue and a bit more experience would be very helpful to you.
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Erica
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Re: My New GSD Puppy

Post by Erica » Mon Jan 12, 2015 7:49 am

If you feel better with a lab, consider those! While they have lots of energy, so will a GSD. I can't say I think either breed will be easy, but a good lab will probably be easier to socialize and keep socialized than a gsd. GSDs are hard work as puppies, and working bred dogs will be doubly so. Not saying a lab won't be hard work - any puppy is - but they may be a bit more forgiving of mistakes. Labs are renowned for being huge chewers as puppies, but if you provide lots of appropriate dog toys and don't leave pup unattended with access to non-puppy-toys, it won't be too terrible. If you go for a breeder, you will have to watch for hips and elbows as labs can have issues with those. I personally wouldn't go to a breeder with overweight dogs, as that shows a lack of either knowledge or caring on the breeder's part or possibly health issues (eg thyroid conditions) on the dog's part, which is something you don't want from a breeder. There will also be tons of decent labs in rescues, so you could look at those. A rescue that fosters their animals will know their dogs' personalities better.

I'm just giving a basic run-down; ask if you have any questions in particular! I would also recommend checking out Dr Dunbar's "Before You Get Your Puppy." It's a free .pdf that goes over a lot of important things to consider when choosing a rescue or breeder, and preparing for a puppy.
Delta, standard poodle, born 6/30/14

master2

Re: My New GSD Puppy

Post by master2 » Mon Jan 12, 2015 8:03 am

Hi

Thanks Nettle and Erica. I will go back to the rescue to spend more time with the dogs and when I am ready will get a lab.

mum24dog
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Re: My New GSD Puppy

Post by mum24dog » Tue Jan 13, 2015 10:05 am

Theo400 wrote:Hi

I disagree with mum24dog when she says that GSD of any line are not good first time dogs that is 100% rubbish and the fact that you have never had a GSD show you don't know them my first dog was German Shepherd Dog and I love him so much he is the best thing to happen me. GSD can be great first dogs, my brother found his Labrador to be way more harder as a first time dog than Theo and Labradors are considered the best first time dogs :roll: and it all depends on who the first time owner is.

I disagree that a puppy might turn out what you did not imagine a puppy turns out the way you train him/her. Theo was easy to train and I never once felt like I wanted to scream, I never had any trouble with him. a puppy turns out the way you want him/her to be.
No, I haven't had one of my own. (I couldn't have had one even if I had wanted one because almost every dog I have had has hated them after being attacked or been scared witless by them on various occasions.) What I have is friends with both working and show line dogs who have them and 15+ years of involvement in dog training classes which have seen numerous GSDs pass through, very few of them easy dogs whether the owners are experienced with the breed (or any dog) or not.

I have also known extremely experienced people do everything right and still ended up with a difficult dog. They aren't robots - you can hope for the best by training them but they are all individuals.

As a breed, and to generalise, they are boisterous, inclined to protectiveness, defensively reactive, loud and scary, not to mention the long list of health problems. I have known some lovely examples but I have known more exhibiting one or more of those traits over the years.

Could I handle a GSD? Probably. Would I want to? Probably not. I don't dislike them, just don't want the hassle.

mum24dog
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Re: My New GSD Puppy

Post by mum24dog » Tue Jan 13, 2015 10:15 am

master2 wrote:Hi Everyone

Nettle- I did go and help my friend at her boarding kennels as she asked if I wanted to help as she had 4 GSD in and she knew I liked them. so I did and fully enjoyed walking them but I could only mange tow as the other tow were to strong on the lead. I also walked a Lab and I really fell for him. I then worked at my local Labrador rescue and every Lab I walked I fell in love with as they made me laugh. I did want to volunteer for a GSD rescue but they said no as I have not got enough experience for the GSD they take in as there a headstrong breed.

I did narrow my breed choice down to a Lab and a GSD but my auntie put me off labs telling me that they are so mouthy and hyper and that a GSD would be better for me as labs are cracker? I don't know whether that is true. but when I was walking both breed I felt more safer with the Lab if that makes any sense.

The lab's reputation as a good family pet leads a lot of people to get them in the mistaken belief that they don't need much training. Wrong, so wrong! What are the dogs that come barrelling up to mine with owners that have no control? More often than not they will be pet labs. People seem to expect them to do that.

Labs are very popular as pets here, GSDs much less so.

Theo400

Re: My New GSD Puppy

Post by Theo400 » Tue Jan 13, 2015 10:59 am

mum24dog wrote:
Theo400 wrote:Hi

I disagree with mum24dog when she says that GSD of any line are not good first time dogs that is 100% rubbish and the fact that you have never had a GSD show you don't know them my first dog was German Shepherd Dog and I love him so much he is the best thing to happen me. GSD can be great first dogs, my brother found his Labrador to be way more harder as a first time dog than Theo and Labradors are considered the best first time dogs :roll: and it all depends on who the first time owner is.

I disagree that a puppy might turn out what you did not imagine a puppy turns out the way you train him/her. Theo was easy to train and I never once felt like I wanted to scream, I never had any trouble with him. a puppy turns out the way you want him/her to be.
No, I haven't had one of my own. (I couldn't have had one even if I had wanted one because almost every dog I have had has hated them after being attacked or been scared witless by them on various occasions.) What I have is friends with both working and show line dogs who have them and 15+ years of involvement in dog training classes which have seen numerous GSDs pass through, very few of them easy dogs whether the owners are experienced with the breed (or any dog) or not.


I have also known extremely experienced people do everything right and still ended up with a difficult dog. They aren't robots - you can hope for the best by training them but they are all individuals.

As a breed, and to generalise, they are boisterous, inclined to protectiveness, defensively reactive, loud and scary, not to mention the long list of health problems. I have known some lovely examples but I have known more exhibiting one or more of those traits over the years.

Could I handle a GSD? Probably. Would I want to? Probably not. I don't dislike them, just don't want the hassle.

I get what your saying but I just don't understand when you say you don't want the hassle or that there loud and scary. cos there not. they are no more easier or harder to handle then any dog. Yes they are very protective and im glad that they are other wise I could have been killed and its thanks to Theo that im alive. you have to understand that I LOVE this breed and am proud of my boy and I am clearly very lucky to have him and to not have had any problems. I would like to know what breed of dog you own?

Erica
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Re: My New GSD Puppy

Post by Erica » Tue Jan 13, 2015 2:47 pm

Theo, remember that what may be an ideal breed for you does not make it ideal for everyone else! I love my poodle but he would not be a good fit for someone who wanted a serious dog. Our GSD is wonderful, but she barks at the door and people who come in the house, whether she knows them or not - which some people wouldn't want in a dog. It sounds like you got very lucky with Theo, but having lived with multiple GSDs I can definitely agree that they're not the dog for everyone (no breed is perfect for everyone), and a working line dog is going to be a lot of intense work. GSDs might make a good match for some first time owners, but I really would caution against recommending them to everyone. While it depends on the breeding of the dog, most GSDs have a tendency towards guarding and aggression to strangers, and with insufficient socialization that can become a huge problem.

Honestly, yes, GSDs are harder to handle than other dogs. Maybe they're not THE hardest breed but they sure aren't easy. I've taken care of multiple breeds and while well-trained Opal is a breeze to care for, puppy Opal was a whirlwind of chaos. The Cavalier puppies were easier to handle, in regards to pulling on leash, barking and lunging at strange people and all dogs, and mouthing/nipping/biting. All dogs need training, but some are easier to train than others and pretending otherwise can only hurt dogs. someone suited to the energy and intensity of a GSD isn't going to be put off by the truth of how they can be. You have to be prepared for the truth of the dog you'll get.
Delta, standard poodle, born 6/30/14

Theo400

Re: My New GSD Puppy

Post by Theo400 » Wed Jan 14, 2015 5:57 am

Hi

Erica you have explained it better. yes I agree that they are not the breed for everyone and I would not recommend them to everyone and would always advices people to get to know them by meeting them first and getting to know the roots of the breed. I was mainly lucky because I had read tons of books and met loads of sheps before deciding the breed was right for me so I was prepared for what I was getting my self in for and understood how important socialising a shepherd was. so I knew what I was getting myself in for.

master2

Re: My New GSD Puppy

Post by master2 » Wed Jan 14, 2015 6:25 am

mum24dog wrote:I've never had a GSD myself but the same claims are made about working collies - need loads of exercise, stimulation etc etc.

I'm guessing it is just as misleading to say that about other breeds as it is about collies. Just because they can run all day doesn't mean they should and in reality the most important thing is to teach them to switch off, not spend 3 hours throwing a ball getting the dog wound up. No dog should be on the go all the time and I would be wary of any that show signs of constant pacing. It just isn't fair on the dog not to make sure it has an off switch. Being working bred is no excuse.

My very much working bred collie pup is 6 months old and dozing by my side as I type. He has been a pain in the backside in the past and a reminder why I don't like puppies much but at last seems to have grasped that I am not constantly at his beck and call to provide him with entertainment. I'm not sure if I would have got him as a first dog though, and I'm not sure that a shepherd of any breeding is likely to be a suitable choice for a first timer. Maybe an older one where you know what you are getting but a pup is an unknown quantity and may not turn out to be what you imagine.
I actually agree with what mum24dog says as it makes a lot of sense just because a dog can run for 3hrs dose not mean they have to and I was thinking last night and thought that I was 100% sure and happy with my choice and was happy with the breeder that I had choose and only made this post so I can show you the puppy photos when I get him and to show his progress from a puppy to an adult dog. and I thought it was only Theo who changed my mind. I choose working line as I want to do agility, scent work, advanced obedience, fly ball and other sports. and a show line GSD is not going to be able to do that. and were I was getting one are renowned for how successful they are in sports.

so thinking some more I am sticking to what I had chosen to do as I may like walking Labs but it is the GSD I LOVE and I have been around them since a child so am fully aware of how they can be a handful and why they need training and to be socialized.

This is the breeder I am going to as I have put my name down http://www.kazzardsway.co.uk/For%20Sale.html and I know that I have to live with the dog I choose and the only thing with Labs is how friendly they are to other people that I don't like as I like that a shepherd is reserved at first with strangers but I am still going to socialize him.

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Nettle
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Re: My New GSD Puppy

Post by Nettle » Wed Jan 14, 2015 11:26 am

A show line GSD and pretty much any other dog can do the activities you plan. "Work" for GSDs does not mean these activities but instead full-on police and military-type work. You do not need the drive that working GSDs have, and it would be very very hard to manage - no disrespect to you but from a pretty good knowledge of working drive in its true sense. Even people who know what they are getting find working drive challenging in this type of dog.
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mum24dog
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Re: My New GSD Puppy

Post by mum24dog » Thu Jan 15, 2015 7:20 am

Nettle wrote:A show line GSD and pretty much any other dog can do the activities you plan.
A show line dog might be able to do the physical activities up to a point if you are lucky but I have yet to see one that can as well as a working line dog.

master2

Re: My New GSD Puppy

Post by master2 » Thu Jan 15, 2015 7:28 am

hi would you suggest a working line mum24dog

WufWuf
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Re: My New GSD Puppy

Post by WufWuf » Thu Jan 15, 2015 9:07 am

I think that it is very important to get the dog you want but it's also very important to fully understand what you are getting yourself into :wink: .

I have a very high energy JRT, she's 6 now and still a handful :roll: but I adore her and love everything about terriers (even things that most people hate :lol: ). She's a fantastic dog when she gets enough mental and physical stimulation. In my experience mental exercise is far more important than physical and like others have said it's a bad idea to try to tire out a dog by getting them wound up with exciting games such as fetch (which will only serve to get them physically fitter and fitter while doing nothing to tax their brains).

I'd suggest that you really take a look at your current daily routine and start slotting in time to spend with the dog, so for example imagine getting up 60-90 minutes earlier that you currently do. This is the minimum time required to take the edge off my girl so a 40 min walk will leave me with a loony who will keep coming up with ways to get my attention but 90 mins will give me a dog who'll usually go for a nap. I do training and scent games on her walks too. She gets brain games, bones to chew, cuddles and training during the day as well as 2 shorter walks and some days will do 40-60 mins of extended "downs" (her choice she will initiate the "game") while I watch telly or lie on the couch.

Also try to picture slotting in time when you get in the door from wherever playing, training, giving potty breaks (30 mins-ish) before you can do whatever it is YOU need to do at that time.

Slot in another walk and then a bedtime potty break or walk as well as time to spend with them relaxing, grooming, training, playing etc during the evening.

I will say that there's NO WAY my girl is as high energy as a working bred adult shep and a puppy will practically be a full time job for the first few weeks/months. With a large breed dog that's prone to joint problems you will not be able to do any kind of hard exercise until they are fully physically mature (18-24 months)

I'm not saying any of this to try to put you off in any way and you seem like someone who has really put in a fantastic amount of time and effort preparing for their life with the dog of their dreams, I was just a little concerned when you mentioned that you would only be able to do 2 walks a day as it seemed like maybe you had not factored in all the additional time you need to spend with a high energy dog at home not just on walks.

Stick with us whatever you do decide and know that if you ever do find yourself in over your head will be never judge you and will always do our best to try to find ways for you to live happily with whatever dog you choose :D
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Nettle
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Re: My New GSD Puppy

Post by Nettle » Thu Jan 15, 2015 10:24 am

mum24dog wrote:
Nettle wrote:A show line GSD and pretty much any other dog can do the activities you plan.
A show line dog might be able to do the physical activities up to a point if you are lucky but I have yet to see one that can as well as a working line dog.

Sure, but would a working type make OP's life a misery all the while it wasn't doing something? It depends if 'up to a point' is enough for OP. I do feel a working GSD might be too much, while a show one of course has the health issues discussed previously even more than a working type (working type still have health issues) but would make a reasonably good fist of such activities. If someone seriously wants to win win win at these kind of activities, they get a border collie. :wink: which is another discussion entirely.

Great advice from Wuf.
A dog is never bad or naughty - it is simply being a dog

SET YOURSELF UP FOR SUCCESS

master2

Re: My New GSD Puppy

Post by master2 » Thu Jan 15, 2015 11:09 am

Hi

Thanks wuf for your advice that is really good advice. I can tell you what I plan on doing as I don't think I explained very well. this is how I was going to spend a day with my dog. the puppy will have a different routine but as an adult I plan on

6.00am- wake up (I wake up at this time already and always have, sometimes earlier )
6.02amish - let the GSD out after waking up
6.10am- get ready ( washed and dressed also my mother lives next door so she always comes in in the morning so will watch over him while I get ready)

6.40am- have my breakfast
7.00am- go for our morning walk ( I will be buling up to 45min but the most I could give in the morning will be 60mins)
8.00am- go to work ( I do work full time but my mom is going to look after him while I work as we are both going to joint own him and she dose not work)
8.45am- morning feed (my mom will be doing everything during the day)
9.15am- training for 10mins (I read that it is better to train them in short bursts so he wont get bored)
9.25am- play
12.00pm- rest
1.00pm- do one of the sports (we both want to do the sports mentioned)
2.00pm-rest
4.00pm- evening walk
5.00pm- I get back home
5.45pm- evening feed
6.15pm- cuddles and play
7.00pm- Kong or other activity toy
8.00pm- more cuddles (on my terms of course)
9.50pm- last time let out in the garden before bed
10.00pm- bedtime

this is what our day would look like other than weekends when I would be spending All day with him out somewhere (park, beach etc.) I will be fitting training in as well and when he is a puppy will be going to training class's every Wednesday night. I don't want you to think that I am dumping him with my mom during the day as im not as we both wanted a dog but my problem was work and my moms use to be work but she has retired and is ready to have one now but cant afford to keep one were I can as I have a good paid job so we both decided to have joint ownership kind of he will be my dog as my name will be on all the paperwork and I will be paying for him but she said she will be happy to help out.

I have decided that I wont get a working line anyway so thanks for the advice. my auntie found show lines way easier than Working anyway and she said the same that I should go for a show line as my first dog. Agility and flyball will just be fun for both the dog and me and my mom in the garden as I know you can buy the flyball set and agility set online. im not doing it competitively (maybe at local fun dog shows) :D

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