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Hello GSD friends!

As some of you may know, we lost our sweet GSD mix rescue (Audrie) in November 2017 at 9 yrs old due to a brain tumor and nasal lymphoma. I was left with a hole in my heart that I never thought could be filled again. It all happened to quickly. She was my first dog and I truly still miss her every second of the day.

We do have a "young" 2 year old GSD female, Serena, and she's very fun and playful! She keeps me going with her funny antics and her bubbly personality :grin2: I know she misses having a playmate and absolutely loves playing with other dogs. My husband really wants to add another dog to the pack again but I just can't decide if I'm ready or not yet. I am actually the one to look into other dogs via petfinder (to rescue another GSD or GSD mix again) and even AKC registered breeders... I'll reach out, save their photos, send them to my friends/family, and even apply on their websites for our potential new family member, but once the time comes to bite the bullet... I suddenly panic and back out.

Here are my Pros to wanting another fluff ball in our lives:
+ Dogs bring me happiness
+ Dog Pack home again
+ Serena's playmate and friends for life
+ Another dog for us to love (and rescue)
+ More love in the home
+ We live on almost an acre of land and bought our home/land specifically for the happiness of our pups.
+ If i adopt in the summer, I have my nieces who are off of school to help take them out during the puppy months while I am at work (9-5)

Cons to getting another dog
- Feeling like I have underlying / unknowing expectations that can't be met (i know that sounds silly so please don't judge me - i dont want to feel that way but I worry that I may once the new dog comes into play)
- Not being home during the day as I work 9am to 5pm
- 2 dogs was harder than 1 (to be expected though of course and i know this also sounds silly but its a valid point!)
- Scared to open my heart again to another dog that I know will cause me pain when the inevitable of passing occurs
- With a female GSD, what if I rescue or adopt another female again? Would it be better to get a male? I've only ever had females. (my last 2 never caused any fighting or alpha issues as the younger was always submissive)

Does anyone have any suggestions on how I can decide what's best for me or how to come to a decision? Any input to help my racing mind would be appreciated.

Thanks everyone!
 

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I'm so sorry for your loss. It never gets easier.

Don't feel pressured to get another dog if you're not ready. I think your heart will tell you when the time is right. Your current dog is probably happy enough being a singleton, so if you do get another dog, do it for yourself. It's always stressful to bring home a new dog with house-breaking, training, and uncertainty about how the dog will fit into the household--but it's also a time of anticipation and excitement. If you are feeling more stress and panic than you are joy, perhaps it could not hurt to wait a while?

Whatever you decide, I would not get two females. I have two male GSDs that I chose to keep seperate. I have heard that same sex-aggression can be even worse with females. There are always exceptions, of course.
 

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I recently went through exactly what you are going through. On March 14 my German Shepherd mix passed away. He had bone cancer and it began rapidly spreading and one day it just came to the point where we knew it was time. He was literally my best friend. I got him on Christmas when I was 12 years old. A month and a half before we got him our German Shepherd passed at the age of 12. A month and a half before that my brother was shot in front of our house in a robbery (he survived and is as strong as ever, this day almost 13 years later). But as a little kid of 8 I was allowed to stay home alone for a couple hours because our GSD was there and it made me along with everyone else feel safe. After my brother was shot and in a coma for weeks the only thing that kept me from being terrified of being at the house was our GSD and a month and a half later she passed. It was such a hard time for me and I knew I needed a dog. Quickly after I got my little German Shepherd mix puppy he was my best friend and my protector, he made my life full. I spent half my life with him, as a child you don't remember a lot of your early years so to me this seemed way longer. When he passed almost 3 months ago my heart broke over and over again. It's such a hard thing to go through and I am so sorry for your loss. We have a Yorkie and I don't think I could have gotten through the loss of my best friend without him. Our Yorkie was adopted from a bad home where the people sucked, but he loved the pack of dogs he was with. When his brother (our German Shepherd mix) passed. You could tell he felt the loss and missed him dearly. After 2 weeks we started talking about wanting another dog. I wanted a puppy but, I knew I wasn't ready yet. I felt selfish wanting another dog so soon after the loss of the one who was truly my best friend. I still consider him my best friend, he could never be replaced. But, I miss having a dog. Our Yorkie is a lot more like a cat haha, just one who loves being around us. His hobbies consist of sleeping and sleeping. He loves going to the beach and on walks with us, etc but it's not the same as playing and enjoying our dog like we did our GSD mix. So back to the point where 2 weeks later we knew we wanted a dog again, I didn't want it to be so soon, so I found a breeder who had puppies due to be born towards the end of the month. It gave me the time I needed to grieve but, also something for us all to look forward to. Our dog that passed in March was named Chewy from the Star Wars character. Tomorrow we pick up our boy GSD and he will be named Obi from another Star Wars character. Our love for Chewy will live on in Obi. Our Yorkie Bandit will have another canine companion. Our home won't feel so empty anymore. I miss my dog every single second of every single day. It seems horrible to say, but it gets easier. We will always miss them but, we adjust. It comforted me knowing it was his time and that he was no longer in pain. You'll know whats right for you. I was also worried about what gender we would want. We didn't want to be picky so we went to the breeders home (paid extra for first pick) and hung out with all the puppies and let one pick us. I'm sorry for such a long reply. I was really trying to convey my feelings so hopefully you relate in some way and this helps you out. You'll know when you're ready. Again I'm so sorry for your loss.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thank you, everyone, for the advice. As much as my husband wants another dog, I do too... I think its feeling as though I would be "replacing" Audrie and then it suddenly becomes more real and hurtful. I'm actively searching but I can't seem to actually go through with an adoption/purchase. I'll keep everyone's thoughts in mind and when the time is right, i'll be sure to update you on our new family member in the future.

Thanks again. -xo
 

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I'm sorry for your loss... It's true that it never gets easier. Looking at your pros and cons and your living situation, I'd say it's not a good idea to get another dog just yet. Dogs are happy being the only dog to the household, because you and your family are their buddies! Adding another dog can be a lot of stress especially if you work 9 to 5. It will take time and dedication to train both dogs to co-exist. Should you decide to get another dog though... I'd suggest adding an opposite sex.
 

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Subject: why dogs do not live as long as people

A family of three had a 10 year old dog that was dying of cancer. The parents of their 6 year old boy asked their veterinarian if he would come to their house to put down the dog to comfort the dog and the family, which the vet did.

After the dog died peacefully, one of the parents mentioned how sad it was that dogs' lives are shorter than peoples' lives. The 6 year old boy piped up and said, "I know why".

"People are born so that they can learn how to live a good life - like loving everybody and being nice. Well, dogs already know how to do that, so they don't have to stay as long".

The wisdom of a child. Wouldn't life be wonderful if people treated people like dogs treat people?

Kaydub- In my world, To me, the best cure for dead dog is Nuther Puppy. You can never replace that One. But life goes on, and puppies make you know this is true.

OP, I would not worry about getting another dog. Dogs do not need dog friends. Personally, I need to give my full attention to one GSD. She is my first GSD and the best and the first Real Dog of my entire life.
 
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Have you considered getting a cat instead of another dog? Also, don't rush to make a decision. Give yourself the gift of time to grieve. Everyone's grief timeline is different. When you are ready to make a decision you will have confidence and peace that you're making the right one.
 
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