|GERMAN SHEPHERD THE ULTIMATE FAMILY
Those considering a German Shepherd Dog as a family addition should make
sure that this breed is the best fit for the situation. The dogs are strong
in body, spirit, and mind. They need much attention, love, and firm guidance
as they grow -- which they do quite quickly.
As a gawky, awkward teenager, a GSD may accidentally knock over a small
child or a frail elderly person. Their strong, happy tails can clear tables,
and their powerful jaws and teeth wreak havoc on furniture.
This is a slowly maturing breed with a long puppyhood, so the new owner
must be prepared to provide kind but firm discipline and a secure
environment to help the dog develop into a well- behaved adult. German
Shepherds are active dogs. They love to run and explore their surroundings
with their excellent noses. They require considerable exercise, especially
while growing. This exercise can be provided by an active owner, another dog
or two, or a fenced yard or dog run. Tying this dog to a house is
unacceptable, as it will create frustration, boredom, and a potentially
German Shepherds are very sociable dogs. They need attention and
companionship. They do not do well if left in isolation from people and
other companion animals.
They make excellent family dogs, because, although they sometimes pick
one person as their special person, they can relate well to all members of
the household. If they are raised with children, they will develop an
abundance of tolerance to the grabbing and poking of tiny fingers.
Raising a puppy with young children takes extra patience and effort for
parents. Often the fast-growing puppy will use his teeth in playing with
children and their toys, sometimes resulting in scratches. Young children
often excite puppies who want to wrestle and chase -- like they did with
Children can undo all the work a parent has done in training the puppy
because a small child is neither firm nor consistent with the pup. As long
as parents realize that they will need an extra dose of patience, the German
Shepherd puppy can grow up side by side with the children and be a source of
lasting memories for all.
|GERMAN SHEPHERD DOG HAS
Characterized by its great adaptability and physical prowess, the German
Shepherd Dog is respected, admired, and utilized throughout the world. One
of the most easily recognized and one of the most popular of all breeds, it
is acclaimed for its versatility, renowned for its intelligence, and beloved
for its devotion and loyalty to its owner.
Surprisingly, the GSD has been in existence as a distinct breed for only
about 90 years. The breed traces its ancestors to a widely diverse group of
sheepherding and farm dogs in Germany. In the late 19th Century, informal
breeding groups of sheepherders banded together through a common interest in
their dogs and attempted to produce dogs with the desired working
The initial group disbanded, but another society formed in 1899
flourished. This group, Der Verein fur Deutsche Schaeferhunde (sv) was
founded by Max von Stephanitz, a cavalry officer known as the father of the
The GSD came to the US as early as 1908, but its popularity rose
dramatically after World War I, when returning soldiers told of the heroic
dogs' work with the Red Cross, at the front, for the police, and on guard
duty. In addition, Rin Tin Tin and Strongheart, two beloved silent film
stars, captured the hearts of the American public.
Today, the German Shepherd is distinguished for his loyalty, courage, and
ability to retain training for a number of special services. Members of the
breed are widely used by police officers and the military, as guide dogs for
the blind, guardians, drug and contraband detection dogs, and Search and
Rescue dogs. Most, however, are purchased to serve the important role of
devoted family friend and protector.
|temperament (clear in the
head / sound temperament)|
A sound temperament is of the utmost importance in a good companion.
Temperament is inherited, and therefore is a direct result of the dog's
The character of the German Shepherd Dog is one of self-confidence and
nobility. Although a mature German Shepherd will not wear his heart on his
sleeve, he should be approachable and outgoing. Strangers may be regarded
with some suspicion, but the dog should be neither overly sharp and
aggressive nor cringe with fear.
A sound German Shepherd makes an excellent companion. An unsound one is a
disaster waiting to happen.
Because of a desire to have a family protector, many GSD puppy buyers
think they need a very dominant, aggressive dog -- an unwise choice for a
family. Sound GSDs are naturally protective of their homes and families.
Puppies will begin to show some awareness of "their" people and "their"
space at about five or six months of age and will display a desire to warn
of approaching strangers. An alert dog and a few warning barks is all the
protection most families require.
For those who have a true need for more serious protection, a sound,
balanced dog is still the best choice. Such a dog can be trained in formal
personal protection by a competent instructor. An overly aggressive or
unsound dog should not be trained in protection, for it will be a danger and
cannot be trusted. Anyone planning to acquire a personal protection dog
should choose the dog and the trainer carefully, for a poor dog or a poor
trainers can court disaster.
Popularity of the breed has led to a great deal of diversity. Colors are
black and tan, black and red, black and cream, black and silver, solid
black, sable, and white. White is considered to be a fault in the US and
white shepherds cannot enter breed classes at shows.
Coats come in a variety of lengths from short to long. Long coats are a
fault in the show ring.
Since many fanciers have specialized in a single area of interest, some
dogs are better suited for the show ring, some are better suited for
protection training or obedience competition, and some are best suited to be
good home companions.
While each of these roles is not mutually exclusive, a knowledgeable
breeder can be a big help in selecting the right dog to fit your needs.
Care and training
German Shepherds are keenly intelligent and enjoy learning. Basic
obedience training is excellent for them. Many of them enjoy learning tricks
as well (or more!)
This is a natural breed, meaning that it does not require clipping or
unusual grooming. Only occasional baths are needed. German Shepherds are
double-coated with a coarse, water-resistant outer coat and a heavy, woolly
undercoat. They are heavy shedders, especially in spring, and require
regular combing. This is definitely not a dog for those who cannot abide dog
hair on the furniture, carpets, clothes, etc.
German Shepherd puppy can grow up side by side with the children and be a
source of lasting memories for all.|
Characterized by its great adaptability and
physical prowess, the German Shepherd Dog is
respected, admired, and utilized throughout the
world. One of the most easily recognized and one of
the most popular of all breeds, it is acclaimed for
its versatility, renowned for its intelligence, and
beloved for its devotion and loyalty to its owner.|
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attempt to diagnose or treat your pet. The consultation with your
veterinarian is the best source of health advice for your individual pet.
You should not rely, on the veterinary advice or any other information
provided on this site for the diagnosis or treatment of any specific
condition. You should always consult your own veterinarian for specific
advice concerning the medical condition or general treatment of your pet.
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shepherds, accepts no liability related to the veterinary advice and
information provided on this site regarding health matters.|