The thought of my dog and kids scares me, but I know there are some good dogs out there.
Here's what I observed in general: a dog gets eager to chase or grab the toy, the kid gets panicky then the child holds the toy above it's head, forgetting the dog can jump and the child gets knocked over. So advised the kids to be careful of that. Also heard from a friend that grew up with a GSD and a couple stories here is when the kids start running, the dog may try to herd them, sometimes there are nips. Even if I had a good dog, the four year old seems too risky, maybe too immature and can't remember rules, may act unpredictably and even if just standing there, your dog probably weighs more than the child so it could get knocked down and hurt by accident. Remember open hand/palm for treats, and have a time limit so your dog and kids do not get over excited. Maybe for now just some throwing/fetch games and see they the kids would like to practice dog training if your dog knows sit, stay, come, etc.
I loved neighbors like you when I was a child! My neighbor had a beautiful Collie just like Lassie that I was so happy just to sit next to. Our dog was a bit mean and I did not enjoy playing with it.
Last edited by Gretchen; 04-25-2014 at 08:38 PM.