German Shepherds Forum banner

1 - 16 of 16 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
2 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
So like the topic says, I am brand new to the German Shepard world. I absolutely love german shepards. They are beautiful dogs, and from what I have heard and read, very loyal.

A little about me. I am 23/yo guy who recently got out of the Marine Corps. I live in San Diego, CA. Have a house with my brother with a nice big backyard. And I am pretty close to a couple dog parks as well as a dog beach.

So, I really don't know much about GSD or how they are bred and stuff like that, so I'm wondering what I should be looking for? I know I want a puppy. I plan on training him/her (hopefully her) to be a PTSD service dog.

Does anyone know of any reputable breeders out here in SoCal? Maybe a good training facility that offers what I am looking for?

Like a I said, I am new at all of this so talk to me like I am a complete dummy lol.

I look forward to learning from all of you and I will keep you updated on my endeavors.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,275 Posts
Welcome! I don't have breeder recommendations, but there are others who may. I think there are some active forum members near your area, hopefully they'll post soon with some ideas.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,536 Posts
Welcome! You might want to check out the breeding section of the forum and get an idea of what kind of temperament you are interested in. I'd also try to find others with PTSD service dogs to get their input,

My son's a vet and while Havoc is not a service dog, he has been very helpful with my son's transition to civilian life. Havoc adores him. He's happiest when he visits and sleeps with him. The unconditional love and joy is a refuge from frustrations.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,574 Posts
Others will probably have more in-depth resources on training a dog for PTSD/psychiatric support work, but if you are not already familiar with the Possibility Dogs, their Facebook page has some links that may be of interest: http://www.facebook.com/PossibilityDogs

and the book that started it all, Susannah Charleson's The Possibility Dogs, may be a good read as well. It's an excellent book even if you just like dogs and have no interest in training them for psychiatric service, but if you did want to do that, I imagine it would be even more illuminating and worthwhile. :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,464 Posts
My best advice would be to get out and become familiar with the different lines. I think a good dog is a good dog, regardless, and that you can find the one best suited to your needs in any line. You are in a fairly active area, so you should be able to find various venues that will expose you to the different lines easily enough.

Once you have decided on the type (line), then look for the best breeder that produces dogs of the type you want. This can take some time, so be patient. Ask questions. Talk to people. Get out there in real life and observe. Once you do, the things you read will start to make more sense. Educate yourself on what to look out for. One word of warning, you need to start spelling the breed's name correctly. It is German Shepherd Dog.

Good luck!
Sheilah
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
15,195 Posts
you love german shepards but this is a German Shepherd forum.

So like the topic says, I am brand new to the "German Shepard world".
I absolutely love "german shepards". They are beautiful dogs, and from what I have heard and read, very loyal.





A little about me. I am 23/yo guy who recently got out of the Marine Corps. I live in San Diego, CA. Have a house with my brother with a nice big backyard. And I am pretty close to a couple dog parks as well as a dog beach.

So, I really don't know much about GSD or how they are bred and stuff like that, so I'm wondering what I should be looking for? I know I want a puppy. I plan on training him/her (hopefully her) to be a PTSD service dog.

Does anyone know of any reputable breeders out here in SoCal? Maybe a good training facility that offers what I am looking for?

Like a I said, I am new at all of this so talk to me like I am a complete dummy lol.

I look forward to learning from all of you and I will keep you updated on my endeavors.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
1,116 Posts
PTSD service dog
Though there are GSDs working as PTSD service dogs, but, honestly, it is not a breed for this job. GSD is very energetic, quite agressive, very loyal and protective, intelligent, but needs a lot of training to make these qualities beneficial to you. GSD was called a "Plasticine Dog", you can shape him the way you like, train him to be anything. But, why should you struggle with agression towards strangers, or exhausting yourself in order to keep your dog calm, if there's such a wonderful breed as Labrador exists, perfect for the job?
So, you better choose what you want - a GSD or PTSD service dog.
If your heart is with GSD and your intentions are to train him to do some specific job, try to read about United Schutzhund Clubs of America - For the German Shepherd Dog and about many jobs GSDs can do. Try to visit your local club and find out what kind of training they do. If you are The Marine, you and your dog might work as life saviours.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,464 Posts
Though there are GSDs working as PTSD service dogs, but, honestly, it is not a breed for this job. GSD is very energetic, quite agressive, very loyal and protective, intelligent, but needs a lot of training to make these qualities beneficial to you. GSD was called a "Plasticine Dog", you can shape him the way you like, train him to be anything. But, why should you struggle with agression towards strangers, or exhausting yourself in order to keep your dog calm, if there's such a wonderful breed as Labrador exists, perfect for the job?
So, you better choose what you want - a GSD or PTSD service dog.
If your heart is with GSD and your intentions are to train him to do some specific job, try to read about United Schutzhund Clubs of America - For the German Shepherd Dog and about many jobs GSDs can do. Try to visit your local club and find out what kind of training they do. If you are The Marine, you and your dog might work as life saviours.
Just out of curiosity? You say the breed is known as a "Plasticine Dog", and that "you can shape him the way you like". But then you go on to say that it would be a struggle to deal with aggression towards strangers and exhausting to keep "your dog calm". As if those are simple facts of life with any German Shepherd.

I don't understand how you can hold these two mutually exclusive ideas at the same time. How can you believe you can shape them into the dog you like, and yet also believe they are aggressive to strangers and take some huge effort to keep calm? Why can't you shape them into a non-aggressive, calm dog?

I have to call you on this. I don't believe that a well bred German Shepherd is aggressive to strangers or hard to calm. The OP should know that a well bred dog is capable of many, many things. And nothing about a Labrador makes it less aggressive to strangers or easier to calm, simply by being a Labrador.
Sheilah
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
1,116 Posts
I don't understand how you can hold these two mutually exclusive ideas at the same time. How can you believe you can shape them into the dog you like, and yet also believe they are aggressive to strangers and take some huge effort to keep calm? Why can't you shape them into a non-aggressive, calm dog?

I have to call you on this. I don't believe that a well bred German Shepherd is aggressive to strangers or hard to calm. The OP should know that a well bred dog is capable of many, many things. And nothing about a Labrador makes it less aggressive to strangers or easier to calm, simply by being a Labrador.
Sheilah
Nobody can make agressive dog non-agressive, but you can make him obedient. That fact that your dog is looking at you and waiting for your command instead of attacking the person or other dog doesn't stop him feeling agressive. They are calm and obedient only if they are exercised intensely. Daily. Nobody can teach a nervous dog to be calm, but can provide a relief from this burden - extra energy - with a help of good exercise. Goldens and Labs, seems it's their job to visit veterans, sick kids and elderly homes. Labradors are completely non-agressive, those you met, most likely are the cross-breeds.
I have to call you on this. I don't believe that a well bred German Shepherd is aggressive to strangers or hard to calm.
GSD is a breed of agressive dogs, because they were bred many centuries to be agressive and protective. This absolutely new idea, that GSD is a good family pet - is completely mad, IMHO. That is our human society demands dogs to be non-agressive. This time humane society is wrong - with the loss of agressiveness GSD looses his superior to other breeds intellect through breeding. There are many non-agressive GSDs, but that is not typical of the breed.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,844 Posts
This absolutely new idea, that GSD is a good family pet - is completely mad
This is bologna! von Stephanitz himself believed the GSD should be a good family companion, as well as working dog!

Seriously, your advice is horrific.

A stable dog does not aggress against strangers for no reason, nor does it just feel aggressive all the time. What a ludicrous idea.

And the GSD is just a decade over 100 years old, so no, they've not been bred for centuries to be aggressive.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
19,157 Posts
OP, don't listen to David. He has these wild ideas that a GSD is meant to be some sort of man eating maniac.

If you're are seriously interested in a German Shepherd, don't rush into it. Do your homework (yeah, thought that was over right?). Learn about the different lines and the qualities more apparent in each. Don't settle on one breeder just because you like the look of their dogs. Don't be surprised at a $1200+ price tag on a pup PLUS shipping since it's possible you'll have to have a pup/young adult shipped to you.

While you're researching the lines and reputable breeders and learning as much as you can, start looking into trainers to help you train this dog properly and positively. These dogs are a lot of work. Especially trainers who have a good reputation for helping owners teach service dogs.

Also, try and get solid recommendations on reputable breeders who have successfully placed a pup/young adult in a service dog position. For a first GSD, especially for training what you want the dog for, I'd suggest getting a young adult if possible from a reputable breeder (there's that reputable thing again) that shows the desire to work as a service dog. Be up front and honest with the breeder about what you're looking for and why. Don't be offended if the breeder says they don't have anything that would work for your needs. Ask if they have any recommendations to other breeders that might have a stronger possibility.

This is not a decision to be taken lightly. This is a dog that will be with you for several years. Also, does your doctor agree that a service dog would benefit? First step there, I'd get a letter from my doctor stating that a service dog would benefit you and your state of mind. It's just something to keep on file just in case. And do NOT buy into those asking for money service dog things online. They're not legit.

There was a GSD that was a PTSD canine at our last duty station. Saw him around several times. His handler had trouble with crowds so the dog would nicely position himself between the handler and people who got too close. Nothing aggressive. He also picked up items the handler dropped accidentally and whatnot.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
19,157 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
371 Posts
Hey you could probably find a well breed GSD to do that. I wish I could give you some direction but if you keep doing research and asking questions you'll get there.
 
1 - 16 of 16 Posts
Top