Dogs, German Shepherd.

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by crazycat, Apr 5, 2007.

  1. crazycat macrumors 65816


    Dec 5, 2005
    I am thinking of getting a german shepherd dog, do i need to know anything about them that i already dont know. Would he kill me in 5 years? would he bite my girl friends hand off, would he kill someone?

    Does any MR members have a german shepherd and can help me out, i really want one and will take really great care of it.

    I have a nice huge back yard, 30,000 square feet of grass/garden where he can run about, i will walk him 3-4 miles a day or 5 times a week. The dog will have plenty to do, i have lots of friends always over, they will always play with him.

    The only think i am afraid of is that he will be aggressive after 3-5 years and bite someone.
  2. artalliance macrumors 6502

    Feb 28, 2005
    In the cool neighborhood of LA
    It's all about training. We have a German/Belgian shepard mix (a rescue) and she is the sweetest dog ever (she just passed her therapy dop test).

    But me and my wife set the rules around the house what she can and can't do. Socialize the shepard with other dogs early in the game.

    Dogs aren't born aggressive, you raise them to be aggressive - or hopefully not.
  3. artalliance macrumors 6502

    Feb 28, 2005
    In the cool neighborhood of LA
    And regarding the exercise, two walks a day should be fine, especially with a big back yard.
  4. Steve1496 macrumors 6502a


    Apr 21, 2004
    I have a German Shepherd! She's named Angel, love her, but she is no doubt very aggressive to strangers and other dogs. About a month after I got her, she became aggressive--I really don't know what caused it so suddenly. I disagree with what artalliance said, I certainly didn't train her to be aggressive.

    German Shepherds are also very playful, so I'm sure s/he'll love the large space you've got. I would recommend getting your new pet into a training program at an early age, so you can be sure you can take him places with you. Other than that, you're good to go.
  5. crazycat thread starter macrumors 65816


    Dec 5, 2005

    Well-bred GSDs have powerful jaws and strong teeth, can develop a strong sense of loyalty and obedience, and can be trained to attack and release on command. Poorly bred GSDs such as those from puppy mills can be fearful, overly aggressive, or both. GSDs (like Pit Bulls, Rottweilers and Dobermans), are often perceived as inherently dangerous, and are the target of Breed Specific Legislation in several countries. If a GSD is violent or aggressive, it is often due to the combination of poor breeding and the owner's lack of control, training and socialization. GSDs are often used as guard, seeing eye and police dogs, more specifically Search and Rescue, Narcotics dogs, bomb scenting dogs, which further contributes to the perception of being a dangerous breed. However, many GSDs function perfectly well as search dogs and family pets - roles where aggressive behavior is unsuitable.

    GSDs' sense of loyalty and emotional bond with their owners is almost impossible to describe. They have a keen intuition or bond which is highly in tune with their owner/handler. Separation trauma is one reason they are now used less often in guide dog roles, since guide dogs are typically trained from puppyhood by one owner/handler prior to final placement with their employer, ie new owner. This is simply avoidable by proper socialization, continuing stimulation to all types of situations, with people, in and out of traffic and better guiding of their new handler/owner into the relationship with their new dog.

    Temperament differences among lines

    The different types or lines of GSD display differences not only in appearance but also in ability and temperament.

    Dogs from working lines have very high energy, and have been bred to have a natural drive for protection, tracking, and obedience. They are bred primarily for consistent temperament, working drive, and intelligence. These dogs can be used as pets, but will be unhappy if not exercised daily or trained to do a job of some sort. The working dog lines are happiest when they have a job otherwise may show destructive tendencies.

    German and Eastern European lines tend to be stockier, with shorter snouts and more muscular chests, and typify the working lines.

    North American lines have a tendency towards a longer croup, longer back, higher wither and temperament ideal for companionship.

    These dogs can make excellent pets, provided that a responsible breeder has not sacrificed consistent temperament or health in the quest for popular standards for good looks under the premise "if it looks like a German Shepherd, it must be a German Shepherd". Please refer to German Shepherd standards of American German Shepherd Lines and German German Shepherd Lines.

    Sorry for the long read but its intresting,
  6. artalliance macrumors 6502

    Feb 28, 2005
    In the cool neighborhood of LA
    Hey Steve,

    I might have misworded my reply.

    A) our dog is not a pure german shepard. she is mutt. so her characteristics are different.
    B) I didn't want to imply that absolutely everybody with an aggressive dog raised them aggressivly. So in your case, you did the right thing. You recognized an early behaviour pattern and got her into training.
  7. artalliance macrumors 6502

    Feb 28, 2005
    In the cool neighborhood of LA
    So yes, a pure German shepard most likely will be way more work than a nice shepard mutt mix. And mutts in general seem to be healthier.
    How about adopting one from the local pound?
  8. Leareth macrumors 68000


    Nov 11, 2004
    If you do want a purebred GS make sure you get one from a reputable breeder with a hip dysplasia guarantee on the parents.

    Do not buy from puppy mills or pet shops or newspaper sellers.

    Another advantage with breeder is that you will meet both parents and see what their tempaments are like and how the pups are raised.

    If you do want a pure bred, go to a shelter and adopt a GS mix.

    They are good dogs that are high energy, need a firm hand and bond really well to a person
  9. hcuar macrumors 65816


    Jul 23, 2004
    If well raised, a German Shepherd is one of the most loyal dogs you can find. If you and your girlfriend bond with the dog as it's "master" the dog will sacrifice it's life for you if needed. It's really an amazing dog. Of course if you beat the snot out of the dog and try to play rough with it... the dog will be aggressive.
  10. Motley macrumors 6502

    Dec 11, 2005
    My grandparents had a german shepherd that bonded strongly to my mom but after she got married never warmed up to my dad. One of my mom's favorite stories is that when visiting her parents my brother was left in a stroller and the dog walked up and sat next to it. The dog would not let my dad anywhere near my brother, he would only let my mom get near my brother. He accepted my brothers and myself as family but never our dad.
  11. iSaint macrumors 603


    May 26, 2004
    South Mississippi y'all, near the water!
    German Shepherds are very sweet, loving, and loyal dogs. My father got into raising them when I was a kid, so they have a place in my heart. We did have one die from hip dysplasia at age 8. Take Leareth's advice and look for a reputable breeder. Ask some of the local veterinarians' opinions on breeders, they should give their honest opinions.

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