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post #1 of (permalink) Old 02-28-2014, 08:25 AM Thread Starter
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Join Date: Feb 2014
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Is a GSD a good choice for my family?

So, I recently moved to a small town with my wife and 2 year-old daughter. We're living in a house with a huge yard, 10 feet walls and fences, and we're thinking of having a dog. I'd like to have a dog that can be a good family pet, that can bond with my daughter as she grows up, and as a guard dog, since we already had a break-in attempt. I had a weimaraner in the past, and I considered getting another one, but I don't think they make very good guard dogs. I'm considering a German Shepherd now, but from what I've read about it in books and on this forum, I'm not so sure about it.

1. I don't plan on keeping the dog chained in the yard unless we have strangers visiting, but I don't like dogs inside the house all the time either. It's fine for them to get in and out when they need something, or to stay for a while when we are doing some family activity, but they must live and eat outside. We have a small winter garden inside the house where he can stay when it's too cold outside, but that's it. Couches and beds are definitely out of limits. I've read that GSDs are more prone to separation anxiety and may get too anxious if left to sleep outside. Is that true?

2. On the other hand, both my wife and I telecommute, so we're at home most of the time. Every once in a while we'll both go on business trips, so the dog will be alone for a few days, although he'll be familiar with the janitor who will feed him when we're not around. Would that be a problem?

3. The house is on a corner, and we have these huge walls around the whole perimeter, but where it borders with the sidewalk, the wall has holes in it, and the dog can see the people walking around. There's a school nearby, so lots of kids, not to mention a bus stop a few steps from our gate. From what I've read, the GSD may be stressed out by watching those people moving so close and may bark at them all the time. Is that true? Can we avoid that with adequate training?
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