Originally Posted By: michelle03My worry would be your not setting limits.
The dog needs his own time and space. If you do not protect him he will eventually be FORCED to protect himself. Then forever labeled a bitter.
Your story would have been cute with your toddler and pup except for the fact the dog was SLEEPING. This to me should be a time the kids know to leave the dog alone.
I hate when owners brag about how much "abuse" their dog takes from the well meaning kids.
They take it until they can take it no more.
Wow, this is pretty harsh towards the OP. It does not sound like the child was abusing the dog in any way. In fact, I myself have placed stuffed animals on top of my dogs when they were sleeping once or twice and they didnt' mind at all.
It sounds like the OP's puppy is very good with children and I expect that's exactly what the OP will see when the new baby comes too.
In my experience, german shepherds tend to be very tolerant with children. As long as they are always supervised and the children taught to be respectful towards the dog (as in not sitting on them, not bothering them when they are eating, etc.) things should go just fine.
Crates provide a great opportunity for the dog to have their own space as well as peace of mind for you when you can't fully supervise. If you haven't crate trained your puppy then this would be a good time for that.
I do not have kids myself but several of my dogs have been raised around very young children. My first gsd, Massie, was so good with kids that friends would request I bring her to picnics and group outings and parties b/c she was sort of an activity director for the little kids!
My nieces and nephews grew up playing side by side with her and the only problem was when she would destroy their sand castles after they built them.
She was especially good with tiny babies. Even my Chama, who does not love kids, was excellent with all of my cousins kids from infant on up. I just made sure to supervise them and teach them to be gentle, etc. The only thing she ever did was to gently remove food from the kids hands.
Yesterday my neighbor came over to help with my awning and brought his 1 year old grandson and his 1 year puppy. Rafi played with the puppy but was very careful to maneuver around the grandson when they were playing so as not to bump into him.