Hey guys, I've been researching for my future dog and was wondering if any experienced owners could give me some insight. It is a few years away still, but I am dedicated to making sure I do this right - I enjoy planning future things out carefully
. I have done a TONNE of research on GSDs, but I'm sure that there are endless amounts I still don't know.
Things I'm after/love in a dog:
- I love a one-person dog. Loyalty is a highly valued trait for me, and a dog that reflects that would be really amazing. A dog that is dedicated to me, listens only to me, looks at me for direction. I'm the kind of person who isn't super extroverted, but extremely dedicated to those close to me. As a young woman I'm really after a dog who will be my best friend, companion, partner in crime.
- A dog who has a protective streak is valued, but not absolute. I love the idea of a dog who will stand by my side, watch me, always be close to me, not leave me when new people approach me etc. Again, as a young woman this would be a great factor, although this gets tricky as I do not want an aggressive dog (I know socialisation is the key). I'd prefer the intimidating kind of guardian almost, not an aggressive defender.
- Trainability and intelligence are an absolute must. A dog that has a strong desire to please, genuinely looks to me for guidance. I have an experience training a current dog, but never a GSD. I am aware GSDs require a lot more 'boundary' training, which I will need to learn more about, but as a person who isn't a complete softy I think I can definitely become an authority figure for a dog.
The main breeds I have looked into are GSDs and Golden Retrievers (and recently Swiss Shepherds, which I am still trying to research how they differ from regular GSDs). I love Goldens, but they obviously lack that protective streak I desire. However, I know that they are better for first timers and are a lot less 'risky' in a sense with aggression (It will be my first dog by myself, but I have had family dogs). They aren't really a one person dog, which always leaves me torn between the two breeds.
For a little info on me; I have experience training a dog, I plan to have no children (I do have a younger brother, but most likely will not be around all the time), I will most likely be in uni and working part time but I do intend to dedicate at least 1-2 hours per day for training / play / exercise etc. I live in an area where socialisation opportunities are pretty good.
So is this the right breed for me? Any owners that can give me some insight into what its really like, how much time (whether I can put in enough), what GSD personality is like at home??