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Discussion Starter #1
Why would someone tell me yesterday while we were out and about with the girls that the GSD was not the right breed for me, I mean grant it, I do have a disability, but I have no problems handling my dogs, if nothing else I have trained them to assist me in a lot of things, such as Elle (GSD mix) walks close to me, and wont walk unless she feels my hand on either her head or shoulders, and she helps do things around the house like gets things when I ask her too. Emma (GSD) is now following in her footsteps as far as wanting me to have my hand on her too, they never pull me or drag me, they don't act violent or anything, and I'm trying to figure out why someone would say such a thing. I consider Emma and Elle working/companion dogs, and they do so well, I could never be without a GSD now for as long as I live...Am I wrong but aren't GSD's considered good for those with disabilities?

Trust me, I'm NOT thinking of giving them away, they are here to stay until the end!
 

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Jennifer,
You'd really have to ask the person that made the remark. "Why is that?" might have gotten a response that would enlightened you as to the unsuitability of the breed for you.

While they seem to have been surplanted as the prevelant breed used for seeing eye dogs, they were the breed that came to mind in that regard when I was a child. I know that the admonishment that "they will turn on you" prooved true when I called my youngest to heel as I started running, tripped over her exhuberent response & beat myself up on the pavement including a great shiner...
It sure can be hard to write off stupid comments...
 

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Some GSDs, both showline and workingline too, are stable, mellow and have sufficient self-control to do wonderfully with the disabled.
Some GSDs however are so extreme in drive, that they are themselves handicapped-- only able to react without thinking to anything that stimulates them.. and for some of these dogs, EVERYTHING stimulates them. Some GSDs are so absurdly hard, insensitive, hard-headed, over-the-top, that they cannot be gotten through to without extreme measures. GSDs have a huge spectrum of temperaments, drive levels-- SOME GSDs are right for you, some not... just like for all of us, disabled or not. We have to match ourselves with the GSD that fits what we need, because the spectrum is so broad.
 

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Jennifer I wouldn't listen to anybody on the street making comments unless I knew them, knew their background etc. Too many people don't know what they are talking about, Jesse would be perfect for you too. He is stable, mellow and calm and temperament in line with guide/assistance/therapy dog and day care workers say he has a "gentle soul". Yes some lines wouldn't work well for you (I would listen to Patti she has it right).
 

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Originally Posted By: JenniferkyWhy would someone tell me yesterday while we were out and about with the girls that the GSD was not the right breed for me,.....
<span style="color: #993399">Because they are clueless.
</span>
 

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Hmmm sounds to me as though you know the breed, and you are perfectly capable of training/handling a GSD to meet your particular needs. Given the right temperament etc what better than a GSD for someone with disabilities. I'm always more than a little put off whenever people make off-handed, blanket remarks like "the GSD is not the right breed for you". As if, of course, they are a true expert on the subject! Makes me nuts!
 

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I've seen plenty of GSD's as therapy and guide dogs, and even my own Apollo with the right training could be a therapy dog if we chose because he can be very gentle and lovey, but Zeus on the other hand right now has proven that he has a lot of drive, so in my opinion would be better off in a sport of some kind.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks everyone...Normally I would just ignore the remark and go on with my life, but there was just something that just got to me the wrong way. People that act so ignorant on things, just is one thing that bothers me, especially those who open their mouths and speak it in such a forceful tone.....Oh well, like you all said there are some GSD breeds that are good for the disabled, and I am aware of that, that's why as soon as I got the dogs I started handling them and training them how I wanted things to go. As with any animal I am aware that they can turn on you, it's the animal in them. I feel very confident that I have chosen the right GSD breed for me, and 'most' people who knows me and my girls, also agree, except for those who just care for the breed, because they don't know the breed, and steriotype them (which we all know happens, sadly enough).

But thanks again for your response's, that's why I love this place, all the support.
 

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Originally Posted By: BrightelfSome GSDs, both showline and workingline too, are stable, mellow and have sufficient self-control to do wonderfully with the disabled.
Some GSDs however are so extreme in drive, that they are themselves handicapped-- only able to react without thinking to anything that stimulates them.. and for some of these dogs, EVERYTHING stimulates them. Some GSDs are so absurdly hard, insensitive, hard-headed, over-the-top, that they cannot be gotten through to without extreme measures. GSDs have a huge spectrum of temperaments, drive levels-- SOME GSDs are right for you, some not... just like for all of us, disabled or not. We have to match ourselves with the GSD that fits what we need, because the spectrum is so broad.
I agree.
 

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(((Jennifer))) I'm so sorry this was said to you. I don't know what it is about some people lately but some people are just flat out rude and I for one am really getting tired of it. Never before would of I have talked back, but several times lately I've really mouthed off right back at them. I wish I could have been there with you, I would told them what to do with their business. There is no reason in this world for people do be so insensitive to others and NO I wouldn't worry one bit about what they said.
What'na laugh?? I once bought a book on choosing the right dog for me. I went thru the entire book answering questions and doing calculations and end the end want to know what was the perfect breed for me??
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.
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no, not a German Shepherd Dog...
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.
.
.
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Not a Doberman or a Rotie....
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.
.
.
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The book thought I would be best matched with (are you ready???)
.
.
,
,
A BASSET HOUND!!!!

Needless to say, I threw the book away and I am now the proud mama to three perfectly spoiling GSDs!!! Try not to let others get to you, your a great mama to your babies and thats all that matters!!!
Hugs
 

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I think it depends on temperament -- the temperament of the disabled person.

My brother's dog was as high-drive a working dog as you could want. She was rambunctious and could not contain herself seeing prey of any kind. But that is when my brother managed her.

His friend who needed two new hips, was all of 79 pounds and could barely move managed her very differently. Or, she acted very different around him. Walking down the steps for example, she would be right next to him offering support. She would go one step, turn and wait for him to accomplish that, then she would move one more step and turn.

After his friend passed on, I managed this bitch for two years. She was three when I got her. She was a high-energy, high-drive working line shepherd, and the best dog with a disabled person you could find anywhere.

You do not become a pack leader by physically dominating a dog.

A GSD has plenty of intelligence required for this kind of work, but also is very sensitive to his owners needs and emotions.

I think that blanket statements about what breed is ok for groups of people does no one any good.

As there are plenty of dogs out there either bred or raised to have poor temperaments, people are likely to make these statements much more often. The breed HAS been displaced as seeing eye dogs and it is a pity. Whether that is due to temperament, or perception, I don't know.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Originally Posted By: shilohsmom(((Jennifer))) I'm so sorry this was said to you. I don't know what it is about some people lately but some people are just flat out rude and I for one am really getting tired of it. Never before would of I have talked back, but several times lately I've really mouthed off right back at them. I wish I could have been there with you, I would told them what to do with their business. There is no reason in this world for people do be so insensitive to others and NO I wouldn't worry one bit about what they said.
What'na laugh?? I once bought a book on choosing the right dog for me. I went thru the entire book answering questions and doing calculations and end the end want to know what was the perfect breed for me??
.
.
.
,
no, not a German Shepherd Dog...
.
.
.
.
.
Not a Doberman or a Rotie....
.
.
.
.
.
The book thought I would be best matched with (are you ready???)
.
.
,
,
A BASSET HOUND!!!!

Needless to say, I threw the book away and I am now the proud mama to three perfectly spoiling GSDs!!! Try not to let others get to you, your a great mama to your babies and thats all that matters!!!
Hugs
Suprisingly enough the Basset Hound is my 2nd favorite dog, but DF just wouldn't stand for that breed which was my first favorite until I got to know the loyalty and love of a GSD, which now in my books is the #1 breed!!
 
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