Possibly getting a GSD for a service dog questions
I am new to this site. I've never had a GSD before, but I love how they look and the few that I have met and how I have had their temperament described to me (and read up on).
I'll be getting a service dog on my own, no help from a grant or anything, but I've met a great trainer and am going to pay out of pocket to have one trained (have a gofundme account to help). My question is, will a GS make a good match for me? I am trying to lose weight, and get into hiking, so I am becoming more active. I have PTSD and sometimes get so depressed I don't leave the house. I'm hoping that having the SD will make me leave the house at least to go walking during these times (that is not the only reason, just one of many). I want a dog that will bond well with me and be my dog, if you know what I mean. I have two kids and they have a small, spunky rescue dog that very much thinks this is his territory, but he got along well with my chow before she passed two years ago. I guess it is a very general question I'm asking. I know they are very smart... I'm also wondering if I can keep the dog entertained and active enough to keep her from getting bored to tears. I plan on a short morning walk around my neighborhood when we get up, a longer 1-2 mile walk around lunch during the week days (on days we are not super busy going out places), shorter walks on the weekends for lunch and another after-dinner walk around the neighborhood (my neighborhood is rather small). Would that be enough or am I overdoing it? Oh, and hikes on the weekends that we can get out. I really love outdoors and plan on hiking as much as I can once I get in shape, which will probably be before I get my SD (I know it takes a while to get them trained).
My husband wants me to get a Golden Retriever, and I understand why, they are very friendly dogs. But I really want a GSD, and a dog that will bond more closely with me as well as be more alert to me. I have frequent panic attacks and need a dog that will be more alert. I have social anxiety as well.
One of the reasons I was told I should not get a GSD is because I am so anxious, I was told that they are anxious dogs and me being anxious would make that worse. I've only been up close to a few GSD but they didn't seem like anxious dogs to me, so I wanted to ask y'all if that would be an issue? Or does it depend on the individual dog? This seemed like a misconception to me, but I wanted to check with people who have more experience with GSD before I buy one.
I don't have a small house, but I don't have a big one. I don't have a fenced in back yard either, so she would have to be on a leash all the time. My neighbors have a GSD puppy (11 mo old) that is not very well trained (I can't say much my little dog is not very well trained, but we are working on remedying that before I get my SD). Will this be a problem for having a GSD? Do I need to have off leash time outside for her? The only dog park around here that I know of is about 45 minutes away.
And last, how often do you need to bathe a GS? Should I take her in for a bath at the vet once a month? Or can I bathe her at home a few month and then take her in to the vet once a quarter? I know they shed a lot so I will have to brush her a lot, not a problem, just want to know if they need more frequent baths.
Thanks!! I have more questions, but can't think of them at the moment!