Breeds on Service dogs - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 3 (permalink) Old 05-30-2010, 08:48 PM Thread Starter
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Location: Valdivia, Chile
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Breeds on Service dogs

I have to do a seminar about breeds used as service trained dogs (no therapy, other group has to talk about those)

Of course I want to be the ones who talks about GSDs, but if you have experience with other breeds, it is welcomed too.

So please, if you have owned, trained, worked with service dogs, could you answer this little questionnaire? (if the question applies to you)

- Why you chose a GSD?
- What are the main advantages of GSDs as service dog?
- And what about the disadvantages?
- Which lines have you worked with and which one do you prefer? - Would you choose a GSD as your next service dog? Why?

If you have more information to add, the better. Probably i'll think of more and better questions as i investigate a little further.

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post #2 of 3 (permalink) Old 05-30-2010, 09:11 PM
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Location: North Central FLorida, east of Gainesville
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I'm just passing through real quick right now but two quick points on

And what about the disadvantages?
Fewer training facilities are using GSDs because:

* Many people in the general public are more afraid of some breeds (GSD) over others such as a Golden Retriever.

* 1st time pet/service dog handlers (no experience) are usually better able to handle certain breeds such as a Lab.

* Some facilities have stated they no longer use GSDs because of the breed's bonding with its trainer handlers. A GSD can form new bonds but it takes a little longer than some other breeds which could set back training or the bonding with the PWD.

This may give you a heads up on some of the reasons that may come up why some facilities no longer use GSDs or why some individual trainers may not want to work with them.

I would never consider a different breed if I were to use a SD myself but I also know many PWDs who would not be able to handle a GSD even if size and ability might be a great fit.

TJ aka Theresa A. Jennings
Pyro vom Wildhaus aka Kaleb ~S.T.A.R.~
Family Companion, Non-Profit Mascot, In-Home Service Dog

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Last edited by ILGHAUS; 05-30-2010 at 09:16 PM.
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post #3 of 3 (permalink) Old 05-31-2010, 03:34 AM
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Location: Central Massachusetts
Posts: 86
I actually choose my GSD for someone else then ended up keeping her. The reason was she was going to be big enough, plus was from pretty good lines.

Advantages are you are never afraid to go out alone. People usually think twice before considering you for their victim. They can be good bluffers in threatening situations (a barking GSD can be scary). They bond very strongly to their handler. They are extremely smart and have good problem solving ability.

Disadvantages, mine is a talker. They is no guarantee they won't develop joint problems no matter how clean the lines are. People are sometimes afraid of them. Surprisingly I still get tons of people wanting to pet her. They need firm handler and a fairly strong leader or they will walk all over you. These dogs need experienced handlers.

My dog is mostly DDR with a little western mixed in. I'm currently working with a person with a dog that appears to be german bloodlines, maybe working as he has an almost completely straight back. I haven't looked at his pedigree yet but I'm pretty sure he is german. He looks exactly like my girl except he's tan and she is red. People think they are brother and sister. I don't think I'd go with any other breed in the future and I'd also go with german lines.
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