After much consideration, I've adopted a GS/Lab mix from our shelter. Technically, he's my daughter's dog but I'll be the one doing the handling as she's only five. We have a Chi-mix as well that's almost a year old and he's not very friendly with my daughter. He's snapped at her several times and once got her face. He gets corrected (evicted from a surface and onto the floor), but he'll likely always compete with her for my attention and for position.
I wanted my daughter to have more of the family dog experience. I know, I know, "get a lab, not a GSD." I love GSD's. I've never had my own though. When I was a kid, my neighbors had one and he was wonderful! He was a good playmate and would come over all the time. Well behaved, gentle, etc. I also knew I wanted some protection.
I'm not squeamish about training. Believe it or not, even a Chi is very hard work to train and maintain. Mine has been nicknamed The Tiny usurper for a reason! I know, they're not as big and strong and hard to physically control, and that's true! But, I'm up for the challenge. Mindset is half the battle anyway and the Chi keeps me pretty sharp in that regard.
A little about the New Babe- I'm told he's 10 wks old and is a GS/Lab mix. His shelter name was King, but my daughter opted to change it to Nony (pronounced Non-ee) after her favorite Bubble Guppy. bubble Guppies is a kids' show on Disney.
Nony is definitely a different breed than the Chi (George). He's very people driven and looks to me to see what to do first, then to the other dog. He really could care less about the other dog. The cat is another story, Nony is sort of obsessed with the cat when he sees him. At this age/size, the cat, a large tom, could shred him one good time and they'd be okay after that. So far, the cat has chosen not to; he's a touch guy, like Clint Eastwood. No kidding.
Anyway, someone has worked with this pup for sure. He knows to potty outside and does so as soon as he hits the grass. When he's done, he turns to go back inside. He's been in the bed with me at night and whines to go out in the night and hasn't soiled the bed at all. He was definitely an inside dog and I believe in a house that was ran by a man, but that had a woman and children. He adores my daughter, is gentle (mostly) with her, and is learning slowly that I'm the one in charge here. It really is a shame that someone dropped him and his brother off at the shelter. I'm glad we have him! He's stolen out hearts already.
So far, he's been easy to train. I've got him sitting and he does so whenever he wants something. I think someone had him heeling, but I still need to work on that one so I can continue teaching him. Tonight, I got him to the down position on command, so we'll go from here. I do have trouble getting his attention when I need it, so I'm working on teaching him his name.
Nony is a very sweet boy too. Loves to cuddle and stays close to me all the time. He's not a ton of trouble... YET!