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We have a brand new pup...and I realize the responsibilites of having a GSD, DH and I are not stupid people....but I swear you tell someone you have a GSD and they look at you like you are the devil incarnate. "Those are really dangerous dogs, all that overbreeding has made them mean" and the ever popular "I was bit by one once and I didn't do anything to provoke it".

How on earth do you respond to these statements?
 

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Get used to it, it aint goinna stop any time soon. There's a million threads here about this exact problem. Stupid people say stupid things.They rarely have a clue what their talking about. There's nothing you can do about that. So just consider the source and move on. Your not going to convince them right there and then that their wrong so just ignor it and go on with your life.

Its actually those people who are missing out on whats it like to own the greatest dog in the world..( just my opinion)...lol
 

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Originally Posted By: butch33611Get used to it, it aint goinna stop any time soon. There's a million threads here about this exact problem. Stupid people say stupid things.They rarely have a clue what their talking about. There's nothing you can do about that. So just consider the source and move on. Your not going to convince them right there and then that their wrong so just ignor it and go on with your life.

Its actually those people who are missing out on whats it like to own the greatest dog in the world..( just my opinion)...lol
Thanks...I'll have to go find those threads....won't feel so alone about this!
 

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I have been fortunate in our town. People stop us all the time when we are out for walks to ask us about Max. He is a great conversation starter and he loves the attention. We are new to our town and Max has made it easy to get to know people and our new town.
 

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We've gotten some similar comments and I usually just try to ignore them. When we first got Chevy, our neighbor said "Oh my! German Shepherd are the meanest dogs!"
And once, a lady told me she thought GSD puppies were so cute but once they get older, they become so ugly! I just told her I thought ALL GSD were BEAUTIFUL and walked away
 

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I have that problem too but closer to home since we got Jesse we are not welcome at the in-laws, even though Jesse got a temperment test in line with guide dog/assistant dog/theropy dog. Not an agressive bone in body and well trained for a puppy. My father-in-law won't even look at him when I tried to force the issue and stood outside a house they were visiting when I knew they would come out, mother-in-law petted Jesse but father-in-law, ordered me to keep my dangerous dog away from him..... So much for spending weekends with them and having family dinners at our house.
 

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Quote: How on earth do you respond to these statements?
Slightly tilt the head, raise one eyebrow if you can, or at least adopt an expression of puzzled concern. Without saying so, the look is one that says "where on earth did you get such a stupid idea?" Then walk away.
 

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Originally Posted By: rizzodmI have been fortunate in our town. People stop us all the time when we are out for walks to ask us about Max. He is a great conversation starter and he loves the attention. We are new to our town and Max has made it easy to get to know people and our new town.
We are pretty new to our neighborhood and with our older dog, he has been quite the conversation starter...

I gotta tell you though...we have a neighbor that has a new pit bull pup that he walks every afternoon...sweetest dog you could imagine...first time I saw him I thought "Just stay away from that dog" well, how unfair of me to think that...DH and I greeted the fellow next time he walked by and his pup was thrilled to get attention...the owner thanked us for stopping him...said no one else would speak to him...I felt really bad about that.
 

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I have run into the same thing when I walk Cooper. It's almost 50/50 with people who say they are afraid of GSD's, and those that make wonderful compliments about Cooper because he is so well-behaved. I have learned to walk proudly past people who give the second glance, or walk way around me... let them think whatever they want to think.
 

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Originally Posted By: HellyHow on earth do you respond to these statements?
I respond by training and socializing the crap out of my dogs from get go so that I as a handler and my dogs can both be ambassador's for the breed.

I have found there is very little "middle ground" when it comes to GSD's. Either people absolutely love them and gush praise, or they are scared to death of them and are ignorant. My favorite are the stories of their old family dog "just attacking out of the blue after years of ownership, no signs or warnings, he just attacked!" Umm, no. That does not "just happen". You did not know the signs, but they are there.
 

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I have had a few people be scared to death of my big boy, and move to the other side of the street when they see him. It does not help that when they show clear signs of fear and avoidance, Cody's eyes are just totally focused on them. Not that he would do anything, but in his mind this is strange behaviour. Because most of the interaction with people is always pleasant; he is loved by everone. Every time people ask if they can pet him, I say of course you can. The funny thing is taht in my neighbourhood he is better known than us... when I walk him, people honk their horns and yell out of the car window "Hi Cody".. Also a friend of a friend's had seen us and our friend told him that oh that was Paivi and Bill, they have a GSD Cody... the friend said... I KNOW CODY.. does not know us, but knows him...
So yeah, I agree.. it is either totally negative that you get from people, or OVERLY positive...
 

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I wouldn't pay too much attention to those people who say such things .... they are ignorant and simply don't know any better.
 

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You can't let it get to you. People who make comments like that are obviously ignorant about the GS and just don't know any better.
How do I respond? I try to keep that "Well aren't you a special kind of stupid?" look off my face and calmly remind them that ANY dog who is poorly bred and not raised properly can be dangerous and that the GS is unfairly stigmatized. It usually doesn't help much (lol) but I figure there's at least a chance that it will make them think.
 

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Originally Posted By: Luca_stl
Slightly tilt the head, raise one eyebrow if you can, or at least adopt an expression of puzzled concern. Without saying so, the look is one that says "where on earth did you get such a stupid idea?" Then walk away.
Oh I like that idea, with a little added indignant head shake while walking away. More ammo for this fall after we get our puppy and the twinkies go to school. Then it will be just me and my scary dogs out walking. Morgan is usually out in public with small children - their presence seems to change the assumptions.
 

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But also work on an expression of calm, beaming pride whenever someone gives a compliment on your beautiful, well-behaved dog. This is actually the more common occurance. I try never to miss an opportunity to let Luca be a breed ambassador--whenever someone comments in a positive way, I always ask if they'd like to meet him (most say yes) and then we stop for a little ear scratchin' visit.
 

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We live out in the country between 2 small towns and I have been taking my 2 dogs for walks in town. They are the perfect angels.
On our last walk: 2 people walking by said that our dogs were very well behaved. A teen girl was outside in her lawn and "dove" in her car until we went by. One lady said my Meb looked like a police dog and looked scared to death as she stood by her car ready to jump in if needed. As we walked by the school my 11 year old nieces teacher couldnt get in her car fast enough as my niece was talking to her. 2 ladies took an alley to bypass us. I seen my sister in law who had only met Meb as a puppy and she came up to the dogs and they both just loved on her.
I guess you just take the good with the bad. But if anyone was to say something negative to me I will tell them my opinion of German Shepherds. My 2 are very lovable and love people so I am hoping more people see this in the breed and not be scared of them.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Thanks y'all....I really appreciate the comments, kind words and helpful ideas
 

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Wow yesterday I managed to get 2 different people terrified of GSD or dogs to fall in love with Jesse. One person who hasn't been to my house for 9 years because she was terrified of my last dog, St. Bernard, which I don't blame her, I couldn't trust him 100 percent. With Jesse new puppy 5 months old she got brave to come over (with her husband) to meet him carefully and spend the night, and by this morning she wanted to take Jesse home with her. Jesse woke her up by crawling up on her this morning and giving her kisses (she was sleeping in recliner chair which is where she passed out last night) and with Jesse on her tipped the whole chair over. Was too funny. She said she would come with her husband from now on. She loves Jesse.
 
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