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experiences with german shepherds please(154 Posts)
thinking of getting a german shepherd pup. This would be my first "big" dog , i work in the police and have already enlisted potential help in training from a bobby who is a dog handler and does dog training as a second job.
i have thought about getting one for a while - met quite a few through work, and love them. DD met one while staying with a relative last week and is smitten with them.
i would get a dog rather than a bitch and a long haired GSD. House is not huge but garden is of a good size and the park is just 2 mins walk away.
i do have an aging cavalier king charles. totally going for a change here....(and to soften the blow when my beloved girl goes....she is knocking on)
so. GSD owners.....what do i need to know before i get one.
i have the name and number of a reputable breeder and am prepared to go on a waiting list. not in a huge rush.
He looks absolutely gorgeous, I am very jealous.
I have never had any problems training my GSDs with positive reinforcement methods, they are extremely intelligent dogs and learn very quickly. I would strongly suggest you go and observe a training class before committing to joining to make sure the trainer is using the right methods. Also, a lot of places run puppy parties for puppies under 16wks old so you can take them before their vaccinations are done - they are the best fun ever!
Personally I don't use the word 'no' as it is used so commonly dogs become desensitised to it. I do like my dogs to learn that 'uh ah' means 'stop what you are doing immediately', but I use the command very sparingly and only when really necessary. For simply puppy things like chewing, jumping up, mouthing, etc. I use either distraction or counter conditioning.
well i just thought id update.
he is now almost 6 months, and weighs 5 stone! all muscle! he is very lean.
he is just wonderful.
easy in every way. he is obedient. loyal. he behaves in the car. he behaves out walking. in the park. He was so easy to housetrain and he goes into his (huge) crate without fuss or bother.
he barks if anyone knocks at the door.
i feel safe with him.
he knows the main commands and usually obeys them.
we walked today through town centre, he sat at every road and waited for the command to move, he didnt pull, his attention was completely on me, he was friendly to passing children, he even managed not to bark at 2 dogs who barked at him!
out and about in the park he is fine off the lead. his recall is good (mostly!!unless he finds a dog to play with!)
training is going really well though his classes have been a bit of a let down - cancelled almost every week, they were cancelled over xmas then due to bad weather. so far he has only attended 2, but luckily we are doing really well on our own. He has been a revelation. He is so quick and intelligent. Everything he has learnt has been through kindness and rewards. He loves us and we love him!
and DH absolutely adores him. im surprised as dh is not prone to displays of passion and doesnt get attached to animals - but this has been different! he calls him his big bear! he talks to him in silly voices and walks him daily. (we take it in turns! so he gets plenty of walks!)
we all love him so much. im so glad i got him and the research and help on here was invaluable.
he is truly an amazing addition to our family and is so loved. The comments people make when we are out with him make me so proud! he is a beautiful dog, a real head turner!
no regrets at all. i would have a houseful of GSD. The breeder has said she is looking to rehome his sister....im so tempted!
I just saw this about your German Shepherd and I hope you are getting on ok with the training - was it easy? I have also just got a German Shepherd puppy having previously had black labs. I found really good information on trainmyhound.com which had masses of information on German Shepherd health and training. Some articles were more useful than other. I am also going to try and book some training for my German Shepherd when she is a little older. They are amazing dogs!
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