I'm very new to the forum, but thought I'd share our journey into the GSD world.
We got married almost a year ago. My husband is a huge dog lover, but I wondered if he'd love my golden, Maggie Rose, as much as I did. She's my second golden, both of whom I've raised from puppyhood. I know it's sometimes hard to love someone else's dog as much as you love your own, but to my surprise, he happily loved her as much as I do...almost.
From the start he's been wanting a second dog, specifically a GSD. He'd ping me pictures of puppies and my heart would melt. But then thoughts would turn to the memories of puppy stage with the house breaking, chewing and training that comes with responsible puppy ownership. I just wasn't ready to go through all of that again. 'Another few years...' I thought.
My dad is a huge supporter of our local shelter. He visits often and has rescued several dogs. He's also a fan of letting his children know when there's a dog in need that he feels may be right for us. Two months ago, we got the call!
Dad told us there was an adolescent female GSD at the shelter. He and mom had spent some time with her and she seemed very sweet. Of course my husband's eye lite up like a child's on Christmas, and before I knew it, we were on the way to the shelter.
It was surprisingly not a hard decision to make. She was beautiful, a little stressed, but very sweet. She was a stray that had just come up for adoption. The shelter had kept her two weeks, but no one ever called for her. A shock to me as she had obviously been trained and well taken care of. A quick $45 later, we were on the way home with our new girl. I have always given my girls flower names, and my hubby kindly oblidged. And so we named her Calla Lily, Cali for short.
At home, spoiled girl Maggie Rose wasn't too happy to be sharing her mom with Cali, or her toys. It's was quite surprising to see my ever-sweet golden turn into a vicious dog on the attack. I always knew Maggie Rose had it in her to protect me, and it was nice to see I was right. At the same time, I didn't need protection. I read as much as I could quickly on acclimating the two dogs to each other. Toys were a no-no for a couple weeks. Slowly but surely they came around. Maggie Rose realized Cali was here to stay, and could be a good friend. They happily share toys now, and wrestle with each other. Maggie Rose is still very jealous when I'm showing Cali affection, but we're working on it.
We've learned that Cali is also a water baby... something I always expected from my golden's but did not expect from a GSD. If there's a pool or lake around, Cali's in it!
I've been surprised by the lack of attention Cali needs to be happy. Maggie Rose is completely addicted to love, and while Cali does love to give kisses and get pets, she's also happy with a few seconds of affection and she's happy to retire into her personal space. Reading up now on GSD's I realize it's more to do with the breed than Cali not loving us.
All in all, Cali's made an extremely great addition to our family. I feel complete for now, and until the babies come in a few years, our house is full. I am so happy that we were able to take her home, and I know she'll have a great life with us. She's made Maggie Rose a better dog too, teaching her to share and calm down, more than we could have ever taught her!