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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hello. First post.

I haven’t had a puppy since I was 18yo. I got a white shepherd out of the want ads that had no papers but was the smartest dog I’ve ever met. I’ve always loved GSDs since my childhood where we “stole” an abused guy from a neighbor (he always followed us home on our paper route, and after we saw the owner screaming at him and kicking him, chaining him to junk in their yard, we quit taking him back). Since then, I’ve rescued lots of adult non-GSD animals that were “returns” to humane society or found animals.

I am such a dog lover, I find it very hard to live with dog aggressive dogs, as several of them were, and really do not want another. I’d love to get one more puppy. I’m getting older, but love to go to the dog park and hike, so he’d get his exercise.

My current situation is a rescue purebred GSD, Storm, who will be 14 in March, an 11yo Golden mix, and a pit-mix foster-fail who is maybe 7ish. My beautiful beloved GSD is great with other animals and our cats. He has hip dysplasia and neurological issues (lar par, slipped disc), and likely will not be with me much longer. I’m eyeing puppies to make myself feel better.

I got Storm as he was turning 3. I’m keeping my eyes open for a puppy. I’d love him to look like my guy (typical police dog, lots of black, exceedingly handsome 😁), be very smart and be great with animals and people. I prefer Storm’s straight back and reasonable size (in the 70-85 lb range), but will love whomever I get. I’m in Minnesota, but can travel elsewhere. This new guy would be a pet, having him be mostly calm but mildly protective with strangers on our hikes would be great.

l’ve been looking online, and it’s hard. Any thoughts?

Here is Storm in his new wheelchair. He can still walk, but gets worn out and unstable easily.

565934
 

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I would look for a quality German Shepherd rescue in your area and get on their list. They will have a screening process. When the time comes, you will be approved and it will make adoption easier. If you want a dog with no aggression at all, you will want one with a known history and background. You can apply to foster to get to know a dog before adopting.
 

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I agree with the advice to contact breed rescue, but I'm not sure if northern breed rescues get puppies. They might -- I just don't know. In the South, purebred puppies do sometimes trickle into rescues. We fish them out of bayous when they get dropped off bridges in trash bags, and pull them out of kill-shelters when BYBs don't sell the entire litter quickly enough and the litter gets sick.

The key to this is that you probably won't find rescue puppies advertised online because a lot of us loathe the adopter feeding-frenzies they generate -- and right now people are extra-crazy. Instead, a lot of us quietly place puppies with pre-approved adopters we love, who've been waiting for the right match -- people who aren't newbies, have stellar vet references, who've shown they work through behavior issues successfully with past dogs, and who've proven that don't give up on dogs.

The only concern would be whether a puppy might be aggravating to your existing oldsters -- they play rough, jump on other dogs, bite at them, etc. Storm might be tolerant, but the question I'd have is whether Storm would ENJOY those puppy antics -- because I wouldn't want Storm's last months to be unnecessarily stressful.

One of my friends has fostered lots of rescued puppies . Her old dog loved them, until his hips got really bad at the end, and it was painful to be jumped on. So she stopped fostering puppies until he passed on. Now that he's been gone a few months, I've been bugging her to meet some wonderful adults that remind me of the best traits of her old GSD who passed. She then said that she really wants to adopt a puppy, not an adult, for her next personal dog. And two days later I got a call about a beautiful 12-week old sable pup that needed to get into rescue urgently. Wish granted!

I mention that story because I have seen it happen SO many times for people who've done heavy rescue work for years. When the time is right, the dog your heart calls for just appears, as though by magic -- even super specific dogs that you'd never expect to find in rescue. It sometimes feels like when some people have done this work long enough, for enough dogs, and shed enough tears over the awful things they've seen, an angel decides they've earned a wish-dog. I hope you get your wish-dog!
 

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Discussion Starter #4
There’s some sense in that, LuvShephers, but I really would like a puppy. Do you think it’s nearly impossible to know a dog’s gentleness given parentage and proper socialization?
 

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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
thanks, Magwart. We rarely get purebred adult GSD rescues here. (I got Storm from the Iowa GSD rescue.)

I am happy to go with a breeder, I’m just a little concerned about finding the right one, and I really strongly prefer to never again have a dog-aggressive dog. I’m hoping to find a highly intelligent pet GSD that will maintain an even temperament. Is that too much of an unknown?

Storm is very good natured and quite tolerant, but I’ll wait until he’s gone to actually acquire the puppy. Storm is having a hard time getting up and can’t always stand well. It would be too much for him physically and probably emotionally too. He’s a mama’s boy. He’s been uninterested in eating some of his meals lately, and I don’t know how much longer I’ll have him.:cry:

Really, Storm was my wish rescue!
 

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DA can be genetic but it’s also how the dog is raised when talking about German Shepherds. You might want to line up an excellent trainer to walk you through some of the early months with a puppy. GSDs aren’t usually dog aggressive but they can be leash reactive. And they can learn dog aggression.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
DA can be genetic but it’s also how the dog is raised when talking about German Shepherds. You might want to line up an excellent trainer to walk you through some of the early months with a puppy. GSDs aren’t usually dog aggressive but they can be leash reactive. And they can learn dog aggression.
Good to know, my experience with puppies is minimal, and my white shepherd was so smart she was easy to train even though I was a neophyte.
 
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