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I had to rehome my female yesterday :(

9358 Views 121 Replies 52 Participants Last post by  Kelly's Buddy
Hello everyone,

Yesterday I rehomed my female shephard "Moxie" to a very nice couple that own another shepherd and wanted a companion for him. I REALLY hated to see Moxie go but she needed far more exercise than we could give her and it was causing behavior problems. The straw that broke the camels back was last week when Moxie and my other Shepherd Thello somehow got out of my fenced in backyard and chased some school children around, a little girl got a few scrathches on her leg and that scared me because I could have been sued or one of the dogs been put down had the scratch bled. I dodged a bullet on that incident and decided that Moxie had to find a better home. We all know how heartbreaking it is to lose a pet for any reason and even though Moxie will be happier at her new home I miss her. Since becoming a first time dog owner on Feb. 9 2009 I now have a deep hate for anyone who is cruel to animals and a deep love for shepherds and animals in general. Things are much better now with just my male in the house and no snarling and snapping going on, it's so quiet ! We are all lucky to have these animals in our lives.

Thanks for reading my story and enjoy your shepherds as much as I do,



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I just found this site

German Shepherd Rescue Groups < Minnesota >

This might be helpful, unless you are keeping Moxie.

Good luck,

There are a number of all breed rescues you can call and see if they will take her.
I agree with Elaine. I hope she finds a good, fitting home.
I don't have any experience regarding rehoming or anything of that nature, but even if you need to find another new home for her, she needs exercise and stimulation in the meantime. I find that a flirt pole drains far more energy as well as intensity in both mine and the foster in less time than anything else. I would also think that she should probably only be outside when you are able to supervise her to prevent the escaping and chasing children scenario. As the recurring mantra on this site goes - a tired puppy is a good puppy!

I would definitely be looking into all breed rescues as the above posters mentioned, but of course, owner surrenders tend to be the last dogs taken since dogs in high kill shelters are obviously at higher risk. However, quite a few will (around here at least) will post them, if you are able to keep the dog until it finds a home.

Hope you are able to find a good solution soon!
Well they did not give her long! Why did they say it was not working out?
There are no GSD specific rescues here in MN anymore; you would have to go with an all breed rescue. You won't know until you contact them if they will take your dog or not. Many of them will do a courtesy posting for you while you hang on to the dog.
okay they had her one day. If i remember correctly, you said they were GSD knowledgable. IF that were true, they would know it takes longer than a day for a dog to get used to and feeling comfortable in new surroundings such as a new home! They've been tossed into a new place away from what they knew... you would need time to adjust too. I'm glad you realize she's too much for you and are trying to find her a good home but perhaps you didnt do well enough by her in your haste to get rid of her. interview, home check, references. those are some of the best things you can do to find her the right home.
Why wasn't she working out? 24 hours isn't long to let a dog adjust and decide if they are working out or not. And I agree, in the mean time you have to get it together and come up with a plan for getting her worked...
Wow, doesn't sound like either one of you need a dog.

Find a no-kill shelter and take her there, please. Sooner rather than later if you won't be taking care of her exercise needs and are risking her life by letting her escape and chase kids.
I exercise her one hour per day and that is nowhere near enough. Moxie got into a tussle (fight) with the "new" owners other shepherd and that was it. sheesh. here's my question for all of you "experts" if you are in fact so good with shepherds then how do I get Moxie to stop being so incredibly dominant ???

No criticisms here, I'm looking for good advise and help on this to help Moxie.
What is your definition of being so incredibly dominant?
Sorry things didn't work out with the new owners. How old is Moxie? How long have you had her? I know that an hour a day would not be enough for my Mac either. But I luckily work from home and I don't have a baby so I have more time and energy. However, there was a week or so during the summer when I was swamped with work and couldn't give him all of the time he needed so I paid someone to play with him and walk him an hour a day. Is that an option for you?
I would start looking at local rescue websites - look for rescues that do application checks, vet references and home checks. Look for rescues that say and do have a lifetime guarantee for returns. Contact them and offer to foster her until she's adopted, and to help out - but let them do the processing and the home check.
You need help training her. If she obeys you, you will have the upper hand with other dogs and children and be more relaxed.

She may need more mental stimulation. That wears mine out almost as much as physical exercise.

Set simple tasks. Teach her to stay, then get her favorite toy and while she's in a stay position, hide it and then release and ask her to find it.

Tons of games, that's just one example.

Train each dog separately. 15 minutes a day for each pup - only 30 minutes out of you schedule - will show wonderful results. Of course, two sessions each a day would be better.

Make time during your little one's naps?
dominance can be worked on with training. unfortunately dominance is also an issue that can escalate to the point the animal needs to be the only one in the house OR have a submissive dog in the house that doesnt want to be boss over the other. and walking one hour a day is not near enough if you have a dog thats not only not getting the mental stimulation but if its not a faced paced one hour, you better expect they're gonna want and need more than that. My dogs do NOT accept a slow average paced walk. If i were to walk them for an hour a day at my normal pace, i'd be royally screwed when we got home because it wouldnt have been enough. German Shepherds were bred as a herding dog. They have to have stamina to be out in the fields all day chasing obnoxious sheep where they need them to go. not to mention this is a breed that excells in most everything it has ever been trained to do. Some dogs are content to sit around the house gathering dust with everything else around them. German shepherds do not and have not ever fallen into the lazy dog catagory. They are BY NATURE a dominant breed. THIS alone is one of the many reasons we stress so much as responsible owners that socializing be done from the start constantly. These dogs can be independent thinks. If they're bored and getting into the trash, on your counters, into your fridge and anything else in the house has been done, they get bored with it and will find other means to stimulate their minds. THIS is what leads to behavioral problems. german shepherds are not for everyone just as labs arent for everyone. I chose shepherds because despite two kids and a military husband who is gone a large portion of the time, they are a breed i enjoy. I can handle their energy and drive and willingness to work and be with me. I understand them. I understand they're a dominant breed. BUT there is a difference between dominance and aggression. Without having witnessed the "tussle" myself, i cant say which it was. I know whenever i bring a new dog in, if its not a puppy younger than 6 months old, our current dogs do their own testing to see who will be higher on the totem pole. yes it leads to tussles. it will lead to fighting if the alpha which SHOULD BE the people dont step in and make it very clear that the behavior is unacceptable. If i remember correctly, you said these were your first dogs. What in the world were you thinking getting two at once, within weeks of each other if it was your first dog? These dogs are A LOT of work. They are not generally recommended for the first time dog owner. I certainly wouldnt recommend them for first timers. These dogs dont just start out perfect and grow into the perfect well behaved dog you see in movies or on training fields. Those dogs took massive amounts of training and work to get them to that point. German shepherds are an in your face whatcha doing can i do it too kind of dog. If they cant be with you they're not happy. if they cant be with you AND getting what they need from you nobody is happy. I also wouldnt recommend upon rehoming Moxie AGAIN unless its to a very experienced and german shepherd savy handler. if she's too much for you, she's probably going to be too much for someone else that doesnt know and fully understand this breed. another question, both of your dogs got out, yet you're only rehoming Moxie. Why not both? They both got out. they both caused trouble.
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I would start looking at local rescue websites - look for rescues that do application checks, vet references and home checks. Look for rescues that say and do have a lifetime guarantee for returns. Contact them and offer to foster her until she's adopted, and to help out - but let them do the processing and the home check.
Excellent advice. And she will be more adoptable if you take her through a couple of training classes. Perhaps some people have recommendations for training classes in your area?
What kind of training have you done? How is she with other dogs - any fear issues?

What exactly is she doing that makes you think she's being dominant?

And you said you do one hour of exercise per day, but what do you consider exercise? A hour walk?

After that hour of exercise, what do you typically do with her?
correction; you can start by not leaving your dog in the
yard unattended.

you can start by leaving your dog in the yard unattended.
you're a first time dog that has 2 dogs, um.

Well Doggiedad thanks for your input, I guess. I re.homed Moxie also because she was so high energy that having her cooped up in the house was starting to cause behavior problems and that's not fair to her. The solution would have been a LOT more exercise which is what her new place will provide her with.

As for the snarling and snapping issue : we got our female Moxie then 4 months later brought our male "Thello" into the picture and it took awhile for them to get along but Moxie would still pick on him causing skirmishes and since I have a 7 month old baby with the possibility of another baby on the horizon I decided that having two shepherds around two little kids is too much risk. Yes I could have done better but how much better ?
Rehoming a dog is not a bad thing if you find you are over your head with the dog.

Not all shepherds have like exercise needs. None of mine need an hour a day walking. But others need a lot of exercise.

I think when people go into getting a dog breed, they are not always 100% well versed on the breed and the needs of the breed, the different lines and their pros and cons, the different bloodlines within the lines.

You can try to rehome the dog again with help from a rescue if possible, or you can choose to try to work on her issues.

I think that either way, you should probably get her enrolled in classes, and start working on the issues so that if and when you do rehome her, she will be started on the right path.

First thing is definitely to contain the dogs properly and not allow them to get loose. I know that you did not let them out of the yard, but now that you KNOW that they can get themselves out, and what they will do, you need to be a lot more careful with them, go out with them, and use a long line if necessary. This protects neighborhood children, your dog, and yourself.

2. Is training classes. If possible take both dogs to separate classes, even if they have been through classes at one point. Just expect to keep on signing them up, and taking them until you have a good working bond with each of them separately. How do you know when this has been acheived? It is hard to describe really, the dog should listen to you with or without treats, on lead or off lead, with distractions, and only the tone of your voice should be sufficient to correct them. This really does not happen overnight. It may take four or more SETS of classes (six to eight classes in a set).

Also, look up NILIF -- Nothing in life is free. Get a good handle on what it is, explain it to your wife and both of you apply it to both dogs.

Good luck with them, whatever you decide.
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I feel that you did the right thing.

I know how hard it is to rehome one of your babies. We had to rehome one of our French bulldogs because they were fighting. Viciously. We were afraid that one day, we were going to come home to one of the boys dead, so we did what was best and found Yoda a new home. I still miss him. We still go and see him from time to time. Giving him up was much easier after I surveyed a bunch of people. She was SO excited to meet him and already told her whole family and said that we could come see him whenever we wanted. Knowing that really helped both me and my mom.
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