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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-18-2019, 09:55 PM Thread Starter
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Hello I'm Jimmy. Just got my first GSD last week. Her name is Sadie she is all black and 4 months old. Sadly I did get her from a puppy mill situation. It's a store that sells all breeds of puppies she came microchipped and her first vet apt is free. Cost 1300 total after taxes and microchip fees. She was 1100 which was 100 less than the brown and black male that was already sold. Her ears are not up yet and do not look huge. The males ears were up however. She is a great dog though and I'm really glad I got her. I have a 9 year old daughter 2.5 year old daughter and 1 year old son. She is great with them. I also have 3 cats 1 of which is not really bothered by her except when Sadie gets excited and chases her through the house. I am having a hard time house breaking her she will pee outside then immediately poop inside after coming back in. she has been peeing inside but has been doing better. She seems to have a tough time climbing up onto stuff and doing stairs. I'm not sure if this is normal or because she was confined to a cage for her first few months most likely. I also wonder if it's a bad idea letting her sleep in our bed. She does have a crate with a nice bed Serta bed right in our bedroom but she doesn't seem to like going in it. Maybe because of her excessive time in a cage? I also haven't decided on fixing her yet. It would be nice to have the option of breeding her someday plus I don't want to mess her up hormones. I just don't know how much of an ordeal the heat situation is. I know it's alot of questions and concerns. Feel free to offer any advice.
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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-18-2019, 10:06 PM
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I don't recommend breeding your dog. She came from a puppy mill situation, so you don't know her actual background. You don't know if the parents/recent generations were good tempered or bad tempered. You don't know if they have genetic health problems, because they probably didn't check them for such. She could be a diamond in the rough or a chunk of fool's gold.

Additionally, breeding a dog is expensive. And time-consuming. And a heck of a lot more work than you'd think it is.

Yeah. That's an activity I would skip if I were you.

However, you could look into an ovary-sparing spay since you want to keep her hormones intact. Might be difficult to find a vet who knows how to do the procedure, but that'll satisfy that goal without risking pregnancies.
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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-19-2019, 08:55 AM Thread Starter
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Yea I didn't mean that I planned on breeding her multiple times to sell dogs and stuff. I was just thinking a few years down the road it would be nice to have the option to get a litter from her to keep for my family. When do genetic issues start to usually become apparent. They have a 2 year guarantee against genetic health issues. Not really sure what that even means if they just give you your purchase price back or something. I have a friend that has been breeding labs for like 20 years now that I would go to for all info on that. As far as temperament I feel like I got really lucky with this dog she is great I'm pretty good at reading animals and am very cautious with my children around dogs that I don't trust but I feel at ease with my kids around her. They lay down and take naps with her. They hug her and do what kids do and she hasn't shown any signs that she would bite. Obviously there is always that potential for a dog to snap but I just hope she stays this way. Edit. I just went to their website and its says all the dogs are AKC registered purebreds. I'm not sure if that actually means much but I will have to look at her paperwork when I get home.today and see if there is any more info on her

Last edited by James Blackmar; 10-19-2019 at 09:24 AM.
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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-19-2019, 10:40 AM
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Thatís great your pup is good with the kids. A shame about the cat chasing.

I have a 10 week old and he likes egging the cats on for a good chase, we're working on that. We are trying a technique called LAT for that, which is pretty much if they look at the cat, they get a treat, ie positive association.

Pups get easily distracted while out on potty breaks. Sometimes it's hard to wait long enough until they go. They seem done but they just got distracted by a leaf. Crates help with that. Some people take the dog out to potty and put them right back in if they don't do their business outside and then take them back out in ten minutes. If they want free, they have to do their business. It might seem heartless but it's better than poo piles.

I'll tell you some of the things I was told when I got my pup:

-As far a fixing her, I believe she needs those hormones for quite some time or it can do damage to her growing hips. We were told to wait 2 years-ish.

-crate: we crate our pup because he's a land shark. He would totally eat our couch given the chance. It also enforces nap time, some pups don't regulate well. As said above, it can help with potty training. We have 3 dogs in our house, 2 crate trained from puppy age and 1 crate trained as an older dog. It's more heartbreaking crate training a puppy but I think it sticks better and they become more comfortable in their den. Our older dog never became comfortable in the crate. It's really nice to have somewhere the dog goes in comfort when they need to be put up. The dog doesnít always have to sleep in the crate but it is an easier time to crate train. Our middle dog is crate trained and never slept the night in her crate. I started My new pup during meal times, just stick the pup in with a yummy treat and be serenaded while you eat. I believe most dogs make God awful sounds while crate training, mine tried all kind of weird wails but it only took a few days. Crate training can teach self soothing as well.

If you have the pedigree, post it. These guys on the forum can tell you a lot about your dog just based on the pedigree.

Also, pictures. We love pictures.
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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-19-2019, 11:02 AM
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Congratulations on your new pup. She's been living in a cage for most or all of her life, being consistent will help housebreak her. I would utilize your crate, take her outside as soon as you let her out of it, as soon as she finishes eating. Don't encourage play outside until she's finished with potty. Keeping her leashed to you or more contained in the house so you can be more alert to her potty needs will help also and keep her from cat chasing. Her ears may take a while, she is still young. German Shepherds are known as land sharks as puppies so she may puppy bite the kids but not with bad intentions. I would watch them very close and probably not let them nap together. Everyone needs a break now and then from each other. We have stairs and our girls have always gone up and down them, some people don't let them until they are older. You can search for threads relating to any of the questions you have also. Have fun they grow so quickly.

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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-19-2019, 11:35 AM Thread Starter
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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-19-2019, 01:18 PM
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Welcome to the forum...she's a cutie...I'm maybe biased though.. lol...we've had two blacks....


I'll add to the advice you already have---It would be a good idea to get her started now as a very young puppy in a group obedience class....steer clear of the big box stores because they typically hire someone off the street---give them a hat and tell them have at it...you're a dog trainer.....
Instead do some research find some local dog clubs that offer classes....the time you spend with her now in class---training with her at home and the "fun" play time afterwards are key in creating the "bond" folks talk about.... her respect for you grows relative to the time you spend training with her....boundaries you want to set for her as she becomes a "teenager" will be easy--because she respects you......


GSDs really are the best all around dog on the planet...but the adult examples of this breed people see and fall in love with didn't just happen because they're genetically programed to be "perfect"....a human put in the time and work earlier in the pups life..... to "build" the perfect adult dog...she's at an age that she won't have a long attention span but it will improve as she gets older ..for now focus on keeping it fun...perfecting her obedience will follow down the road....again get started now don't wait 'til later... she really is at good age...

Be kind to your dog..he's only a few years of your life
but you.. are ALL of his life
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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-20-2019, 12:12 AM
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Hello and welcome! Your dog is adorable. Congrats on her! Everyone does things a little differently, but I personally always have my dogs sleep in bed with me from the first day. I empathize with a baby suddenly separated from everything itís ever known in its young life, to be thrown into a cage all alone all night long. Especially since their main comfort is snuggling with their siblings and mama. I feel it is great bonding, however I sleep ever so lightly so I can feel the slightest stir from the pup at which point I immediately take them outside. I donít sleep much in the beginning but itís so worth it as far as creating a relationship and potty training. If my pup wakes me up a couple times a night, chances are they would need to do the same being in a crate where the only way they can get your attention is by crying. Either you ignore it thinking itís a plea for freedom, or they learn they can gain said freedom by acting like they have to potty.

During the day time, take her out as soon as she wakes up, after she drinks, after she eats, and donít go inside til she goes. They canít hold it long, especially if they are moving around. Once she does, praise the **** out of her and make the biggest fuss. If you see her starting to sniff around or wander off, watch her closely and if she goes to squat say a firm no or an uh uh and pick her up to take her out. Praise when she does go outside. I also recommend in general picking them up to take them out, itís much easier for them to hold it til you make it out there that way.
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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-20-2019, 12:33 AM
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I've been getting advice from this forum pretty much exclusively but now feel like maybe I can give some! Yay!

I got my GSD as an adult (3 years old), unspayed. She went into heat 4 days after I got her, unexpectedly. It was REALLY annoying; had to be super vigilant on walks for fear an unneutered male might harass her, couldn't leave her outside unattended, she would pace and whine around the house all the time (though granted that could have also been because she was still in an unfamiliar place), had to use doggie diapers and clean up blood from the floor. I had no desire to breed her (she'd already been bred once) so for me, spaying was a no-brainer. And the added health benefits (mainly preventing mammary cancer) sound pretty legit. As for waiting a while before spaying her though, I'll let others give their opinions: I hear mixed things, but it sounds like larger breeds should be spayed a little later in life to prevent orthopedic problems.

She came crate-trained which was a friggin godsend. She loves that crate and I feel good putting her in there when I have to leave the house for extended periods of time, as I'm sure she won't be anxiously pacing around or chewing/peeing on anything. She likes her crate so much she goes in there on her own when I'm home. I know you feel guilty that she's probably been in a cage most of her life, but if crate training is done right then their crate feels like their safe space, their den. Certainly the case with my pup, and I'm pretty sure she was neglected for the first 2 years of her life (and spent a lot of time in a crate and/or small dog run).

I had her crate in my bedroom for the first week or so but eventually put it out in the living room. I sleep better because her fidgeting doesn't constantly wake me up, I can still hear her if she whines to go potty (which hasn't happened yet), and it gave me a little peace of mind that I wasn't encouraging the development of separation anxiety--she can be comfortable not being in the same place as me 24/7. Don't know how important that is for you, but for me (single, full-time job) not having separation anxiety is critical.

Also for me I am house proud and like...a little bit OCD and don't want a dog in my bed or on any furniture. So that's just me...She seems pretty happy though. From what I read though, whatever house rules you're going to have in the future--like yes/no on furniture--you should probably be setting those rules now, or she'll be pretty confused later on when she starts getting corrected for stuff that was always OK in the past.
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Last edited by banzai555; 10-20-2019 at 12:36 AM.
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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-20-2019, 11:49 AM
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I've been getting advice from this forum pretty much exclusively but now feel like maybe I can give some! Yay!

I got my GSD as an adult (3 years old), unspayed. She went into heat 4 days after I got her, unexpectedly. It was REALLY annoying; had to be super vigilant on walks for fear an unneutered male might harass her, couldn't leave her outside unattended, she would pace and whine around the house all the time (though granted that could have also been because she was still in an unfamiliar place), had to use doggie diapers and clean up blood from the floor. I had no desire to breed her (she'd already been bred once) so for me, spaying was a no-brainer. And the added health benefits (mainly preventing mammary cancer) sound pretty legit. As for waiting a while before spaying her though, I'll let others give their opinions: I hear mixed things, but it sounds like larger breeds should be spayed a little later in life to prevent orthopedic problems.

She came crate-trained which was a friggin godsend. She loves that crate and I feel good putting her in there when I have to leave the house for extended periods of time, as I'm sure she won't be anxiously pacing around or chewing/peeing on anything. She likes her crate so much she goes in there on her own when I'm home. I know you feel guilty that she's probably been in a cage most of her life, but if crate training is done right then their crate feels like their safe space, their den. Certainly the case with my pup, and I'm pretty sure she was neglected for the first 2 years of her life (and spent a lot of time in a crate and/or small dog run).


Also for me I am house proud and like...a little bit OCD and don't want a dog in my bed or on any furniture. So that's just me...She seems pretty happy though. From what I read though, whatever house rules you're going to have in the future--like yes/no on furniture--you should probably be setting those rules now, or she'll be pretty confused later on when she starts getting corrected for stuff that was always OK in the past.

Wow, dealing with the mess of a heat right off the bat is annoying. But maybe, in the end, it was a good thing. It made you more vigilant about who met your gal. Most newly adopted dogs need a few weeks of peace and quiet to learn their new normal. After age 3 spaying won't make as much of a difference in Mammary cancer, as far as I've read but it will nearly reduce Pyometra to zero!

As far as no dogs on the furniture, that is perfectly OK. I'm sure you have plenty of comfy space on the floor as well as her crate. My dogs are allowed on the furniture at home but not at my daughter's house. They do just fine being on the floor when they visit.

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