What advice would you give on owning a German Shepherd ?

What advice in training, socialization, diet, nutrition and exercise would you give on someone having a male GSD puppy?.

10 Answers

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  • Jojo
    Lv 7
    2 weeks ago
    Best answer

    So.....Is this GSD from working lines or show lines or just pet bred.

    Also what is the dogs basic temperament? Dominant? Submissive? In-between? etc.

    A high prey drive GSD in the wrong hands could be a nightmare.

    A first time GSD owner is best suited with a submissive natured and low prey drive GSD.

    Obviously like ALL breeds of dog a GSD should be socialised with all sorts of things that go on in the world, eg: crowds of people, trains, traffic, farm animals, loud noises etc, from 7-8 weeks old, even if it means carrying the pup out in public until its had it`s vaccinations. Feed good quality kibble, especially when still growing.

    No `forced` exercise until the dog is at least 15 months old, so let the dog walk and run at its own pace, no jumping up or down from any height above 15". Once the dog is fully mature physically, which is around 18- 20 months, then exercise can be unlimited.

    All GSD`s, should  like all breeds of dog be trained in the basic obedience exercises, and especially the `recall` and the `Leave` commands.

    There is plenty of help and advice online on how  to manage a German Shepherd dog.  https://www.google.com/search?q=How+to+care+for+an...

    Source(s): GSD owner for 56 years.
  • 2 weeks ago

    There are a lot of good answers, but I don't think anyone has mentioned yet that they tend to have very delicate stomachs so be extra careful with food and even car rides. I've seen my fair share of tummy sensitive dogs and GSDs produced more than half the messes I've cleaned up.

    Source(s): Vet student and clinic intern
  • 2 weeks ago

    That GSD are not for first time or novice owners, PERIOD.  They are high energy & highly intelligent (problem-solving) breed, & will (at least run "mental" circles) around the average person.  This is a protective guard-dog breed & can be dog-dominant, therefore you must have good control over any such dog.  That means you and they REQUIRE obedience training, just as you need gun training before purchasing a gun.

    Had you bought from a REPUTABLE BREEDER - they would be an ideal resource for all your questions or concerns.  Apparently,...you DID NOT purchase from such a person - if you are now on the internet looking for answers/advice.

  • PR
    Lv 7
    2 weeks ago

    I would suggest you don't get a German Shepherd UNLESS you have had dogs before, and are already comfortable with training. GS dogs are quite intelligent, and look for fairness in training. If you don't know how to train a dog, they will decide you are not smart enough for them and just do what they want. This is not in a way of "I will take advantage of you", but - "How in the heck do you think you can tell me what to do when you don't know what you are doing?" Or: "This is not fair, so I am not going to listen to you".

    Get a Shepherd/Lab mix if you are new to dogs, or even a Border Collie, or a dog at the shelter. Getting a German Shepherd if you have not had dogs before will not only cause problems for you, but for the dog when it needs to be taken to a shelter or bites someone.

    Even better, go to an animal rescue league. These groups work hard at finding the RIGHT dog for you and your understanding of dogs, as well as your own lifestyle. They want the right fit, because they want to avoid a return which will hurt the dog and the family. They will find a dog you like and want to keep, but is appropriate for you and you family. Rescue leagues can be found at pet supply stores on weekends, showing their pets. Better yet, is to become a foster for a rescue group, where you can actually get dog experience ALONG WITH HELP for FREE. You don't need to keep a dog you foster, so you win either way. Yes, you can keep the dog if you fall in love with it, but will still need to pay for it. The group also covers vet bills under normal circumstances.

    ALWAYS spay or neuter any dog you get that belongs to you. Use a dog cage for house training. Remember that: DOGS LIVE FOR PRAISE.

    Scolding a dog is useless and will end up in either a frightened dog who doesn't know what to do in order to please you, or simply a very confused dog who won't behave.

    Get a dog from the shelter. Or, get a cat.

    • I have a German Shepherd/ Labrador and she's no dog for a beginner either. There really is no specific starter breed. Older, calmer dogs are best to start with.

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  • Sky
    Lv 7
    2 weeks ago

    First, cherish every moment you have with that pup throughout his/her life.  Second, don't let a day go by that you don't give a great big hug and kiss and say how much you love him/her.  Third, take the pup to the vet regularly and follow the vet's advice for proper care.  Fourth, get health insurance for the pup so that if any emergencies or large expenses come along, insurance will help soften the bill so you don't have to choose between your dog and your bank account.  Fifth, provide a good quality dog food; the type/brand and quantity can be decided with the advice of the vet.  Sixth, get a good quality seatbelt harness so your pup can be safely secured when riding in the car, as well as providing a comfortable place to attach a leash so you can avoid attaching to the collar and leading the pup around by his/her throat.  Seventh, be sure to get your pup microchipped for peace of mind in finding him/her if your pup is ever lost or stolen.  Eighth, brush your pup's teeth daily, or at least several times a week, as well as making an annual appointment for a dental checkup and cleaning at the vet.  That will help maintain healthy teeth and gums, as well as keeping the breath kissably fresh.  Ninth, have patience!  When you're training and socializing, your pup does not know what words you are trying to say and has to decipher what your actions are instructing.  There's a huge communication barrier because of the whole language thing, so training takes time.  Your pup WILL make mistakes and sometimes misbehave, so stay in control of your temper as you dish out discipline, and training.  And last (for now), always treat your pup as a valued member of the family, never a thing, or property, or a status symbol.  If you can't or won't have the dog be anything more than a lawn ornament chained to a doghouse, don't get a dog.  A dog belongs with the rest of his/her pack, in the home.

    • Sky
      Lv 7
      1 week agoReport

      Jojo, love and affection are forms of praise.  It shows the dog he/she is appreciated and loved.  All dogs deserve that, not just little lap dogs.  A dog is a somebody, not just a thing to occasionally interact with.  If you can't love your dog with all your heart, don't have a dog.

  • 2 weeks ago

    maybe you can get involved with some dog training

  • Matt
    Lv 6
    2 weeks ago

    Socialize them with other dogs from a young age, take them to the local dog park and have them get used to meeting new people and dogs. Walk it as often as you can, they are a high energy breed.

    • Jojo
      Lv 7
      2 weeks agoReport

      Never take a young puppy to a dog park.Too many unruly dogs there and also a hot bed for diseases.

  • Anonymous
    2 weeks ago

    I would speak to a Vet, a breeder, a trainer.  Then I'd speak to all of them a second time.

    This breed is a VERY BAD IDEA for first time owners.

    If you are clueless, DON'T GET A GSD.

    Incidentally, your ignorance is astounding.  "No one with children should even think about owning one of those things. Pit Bulls target children a lot, I see it all the time in the media. I read a story where a family left their "sweat and loving" Pit Bull they had for years to watch over their baby, and when they came back the Pit Bull literally tore that baby apart."  Sweat?  Pit bulls sweat?

    I'd like to see more research than one website about "pit bulls targeting children a lot."  Targeting?

  • 2 weeks ago

    Best advice of all: get a mixed-breed rescue and not some breed. Breeding is cruel and should be outlawed. Why do you think so many German Shepherds have hip dysplasia? It was bred into them and you're just helping to continue that curse.

    • Jojo
      Lv 7
      2 weeks agoReport

      I have owned many GSD`s for over 56 years and not ONE has suffered with hip problems.

  • Jay
    Lv 6
    2 weeks ago

    None    at    all.

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