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The primary error we make when relating to our dogs is that we "humanize" them. We forget dogs are a different species with different needs. No amount of playing “mommy” or “daddy” will ever make them our children. They still have canine DNA and are hardwired to be dogs. Once we realize the disservice we do them by not allowing them to be fulfilled as dogs, the task of rehabilitation is made easier. Quote from Cheri Lucas, dog trainer.


For example, GSDs were herding dogs and home protection dogs from the beginning which means they have to be alert and watchful. (Anyone who has ever tried HGH or AKC C herding knows that the dog is watching every twitch of 25 to 250 sheep for possibly hours.) An alert and watchful animal means it is sensitive to and processes a deluge of environmental stimuli and information. It is high bandwidth so to speak. For this high bandwidth dog to not become overwhelmed to stress by stimuli it has to have solid nerves. Take away the nerve base and you have an anxious, insecure, fearful, highly stressed, sometimes unhealthy animal. Pets as much as working dogs need this nerve base. However a constantly alert animal can also be a challenge to a low energy pet home.

Add the drives and aggression, again necessary and designed into the breed from the beginning and it adds to the challenge. However, take away the drives, the aggression, and the watchful, alert nature and do you still have a GSD?

I would say not, better to get another breed.

Quote by Ocean on this forum.

The biggest issue aside from breeding are owners. IMO.

Sport people will not see this because they are surrounded by people who are working their dogs regularly.
 

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Didnt you just post a big thread saying we were doing a disservice to PET owners by not making it easier for them to find good pet dogs? Or was that someone else.

I agree with what you've said here. Disagree with what was said before.

Seems like the two contraindicate themselves?

Like the breed for what it's SUPPOSE to be, or get another breed! Dont water it down.

Sent from Petguide.com Free App
 

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I have never, ever, been for watering down the breed.

The other thread was not meant to help people find pets.

The disservice is by not helping them to find a stable healthy GSD.

The two main problems with the GSD are poor breeding and wrong owners for the breed.
 

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Love the clear way the importance of understanding the breed and breeding for stability is explained. Puts is all together so well. Do you have a link to the source of your quote? I'd love to read more from the author.

So many people come on the forum saying that they hate seeing the aggressive unstable, fearful dogs, and so want to become breeders because they know they can do better - yet, they have no understanding of the heritage and multi-facets of the breed, and wouldn't know drive, appropriate aggression, and stability if they saw it.

I know I brag about my dogs a lot, but I think Gryffon illustrates stability in so many different situations.

For example, the other evening I we came around a corner on my property, and their was an owl sitting on the ground. Keeta, the older, dominant dog, chased it, Gryff following. The Owl flew up into the nearest tree. Keeta stood guard at the base of the tree, giving the owl a few warning barks, Gryff seemed to loose immediate interest, and was sniffing the ground. He didn't seem to be even paying attention to the owl, but when it flew on, it was him that immediately tried to continue the chase, (I recalled him), while Keeta just watched the bird fly away. I was surprised at how quickly he reacted to the bird's quiet movements in the semi-darkness - didn't even think that he was aware that the owl was still around.

I often have examples like this, where Gryff seems oblivious to his surroundings and surrounding events (people would think - some watch dogs - not!), but in fact shows that he is VERY in tune with everything, ready to react if necessary, aware of everything, just so darn stable and self-confident, that he does not let it overwhelm his behaviour.
 

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GSD's are versatile. they can live in an apartment or a mansion.
they're great couch potatos, hiking dogs, guard dogs, pet/companions,
service dogs, detection dogs, herding dog, etc. you can train them to be
any type of dog you want. because they're so versatile i don't see any
disservice to them. if you leave a GSD or any dog in a yard, tied to a chain,
left in the garage, basement or anywhere you chose to leave your dog to be
ignored is a disservice.

Jack's DaD what do you do with your dog that conforms with the traits
of a GSD?
 

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GSD's are versatile. they can live in an apartment or a mansion.
they're great couch potatos, hiking dogs, guard dogs, pet/companions,
service dogs, detection dogs, herding dog, etc. you can train them to be any type of dog you want.
because they're so versatile i don't see any disservice to them.

I agree with doggiedad. The disservice is done when an owner chains a dog in the back yard and the only interaction with the dog is to place a pot of dog food in front of it.

Every dog owner has a specific personal need for a canine. Some like to compete, some don't. Some need physical interaction, some don't. Some need their dogs to work, some don't. Ect. Ect.

What a person does with their dog to create a stable happy dog doesn't make them any better or worse than a person who does something different to reach the same goal.
 

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This forum is so :censored: exhausting.

So what is this- yet another thread on not humanizing our dogs? Or was this yet another thread on the "pet" population wanting a "watered down" GSD? Or maybe this was yet another thread on how only certain people should be able to own a representation of what the breed was "supposed" to be? Or maybe it's just another thread on the current state of the GSD?

Is there really nothing new to talk about? It's like the same threads over and over and over and over and...
:thumbsdown:
 

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I love your threads, Andy. They are thought provoking.
 

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Well, my neighbors just adopted an adult GSD and had him off leash in a remote area nearby. Wouldn't you know it, some kids were riding their 4-wheelers past the dog and he chased them, and clamped down on one of their legs. Fortunately didn't draw blood, but still. Not a good day for anyone involved.

Training. The one thing that this breed needs is someone to teach them what is acceptable and what isn't. They're smart enough to learn, but are the owners smart enough to train them? That's my beef with GSD owners. If you want to make a general statement about some people not capable of providing a proper home to a GSD, I'd start with with questioning who sets the rules in the home: the owner or the dog, lol.
 

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Every dog owner has a specific personal need for a canine.
That is ENTIRELY true. I have two dogs, one was purchased when I had an office job that required me to be away from home more than 40 hours a week. I needed a dog that was okay living in an apartment by himself most of the time, but would want to go for long walks when I got home. I researched breeds and breeders, and found a very nice Shiba Inu. He's a total couch potato; around 3pm he might think about getting out of bed to play, or go for a walk. I would NEVER have expected a GSD to live under those conditions. I would have ended up with a neurotic dog that ate my furniture (reference MANY threads here). I am at a different place in my life now, where I am working mostly from home, and am only away about 15 hours a week during the school year. I have time for a GSD now. I live in an apartment with a yard that doesn't allow puppies, so instead of a breeder, I rescued my girl (a cross bred) from a shelter. She has a relatively high drive, and is devoted to me. We spend about an hour doing obedience training every morning, and another hour playing in the evening. If I didn't have the time to spend with her, she would be insane, and likely would have been returned to the shelter. Like many GSD's are. Don't water down the breed; but by GOD, educate yourself about breeds before you buy a dog. Know what you're getting yourself into. I knew what I had time for when I got my Shiba Inu; he was perfect for where I was in my life, and I've never regretted that decision. I wouldn't trade my GSD for anything, she's exactly what I want right now. She makes my family NUTS when we miss even ONE walk. THESE DOGS ARE NOT COUCH POTATOES...
 

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Someone enlighten me. Why are GSD's with good nerves a challenge? I always think of challenging dogs as the ones who won't settle, have fear issues, etc.
 

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I think I get where Andy is coming from...

I think people on this forum like to believe their dog would make a fine couch potato because a few days out of the year, when the weather gets bad, the dog is fine laying on a couch for a day or two. But I personally have a hard time believing that an excellent example of the breed (lets say a K9) could lay around for days at a time. And I'm not talking about a trained one, I'm talking about a dog that has the temperament to be a K9, or even an excellent SchH3 dog, but just ends up in a family that is more relaxed and really doesn't do much...

I think there are too many buyers out there looking for a GSD because of its "history" but just plan on treating it like a piece of furniture. Once in a while they end up on this forum with a question about a breeder, and get "enlightened" about Schutzhund. Search out a breeder, get a dog, and are in for a cruel surprise.

I think a lot of us just don't realize how much we do with our dogs. How much more exercise, attention, training, ect they get compared to the average pet. Even a 30 minute fetch session or 2 30 minute walks are probably more than most pets get, and these are some of the reasons I believe OUR dogs stay "sane." Although I do notice that if we get 4 or so days of bad weather or life throws a busy week my way, and my boy doesn't get his daily exercise, he does start bouncing off walls a bit. But IMO this is normal for ANY breed of dog but its just more so with a working breed, and is just a sign that I haven't been doing enough.
 

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I think a lot of us just don't realize how much we do with our dogs. How much more exercise, attention, training, ect they get compared to the average pet. Even a 30 minute fetch session or 2 30 minute walks are probably more than most pets get, and these are some of the reasons I believe OUR dogs stay "sane."
That's true, and something that I was reminded of just yesterday.

I often think that I don't do enough with my dogs. I have been thinking that more often since I started reading this forum, partly because there are some pretty impressive dogs (and owners) here, and partly because of the "Pinterest effect" -- it's easy to lose perspective and forget that not every person is doing every thing; it's not one person doing 10 different sports with their dog, it's 10 different people each doing one sport with their dogs.

Anyway yesterday an acquaintance (and longtime foster parent for the rescue I work with, so not somebody who's totally new to dogs) posted about how she was about to start training her newest dog, and wanted tips for handling the entire furry horde without all of them jumping in her face at once. And it finally occurred to me that "wait, I don't have that problem. Wait, my Dog Mob is actually sorta trained!"

Right now I'm working on teaching Crookytail to do the fetch-a-beer-from-the-cooler trick, although we're doing gin and tonics rather than beers because I don't drink beer (this may be subject to revision though, because Crooky is frankly not that bright and the object discrimination portion of the trick, in combination with all the other steps, may prove to be beyond him. It has before). I'm teaching Pongu to pack and unpack birthday presents (using a gift box, because tape, scissors, and wrapping paper are a bit beyond my dog's capabilities). And when I work one dog, the other goes into a down-stay, and it's been a long time since I've had to worry about one of them interrupting the other.

I'm prone to thinking of this sort of stuff as just derpy silly tricks that I make up to amuse myself, because that's what it is. It's nowhere near as athletically demanding as agility, nowhere near as hard on the dog's nerves as Schutzhund. It's just silly stuff. So I don't think of my dogs as being particularly well trained, especially compared to some of the ones people have around here. And sometimes I wonder whether I'd be able to handle a working dog, given some of the other posts.

But yeah, I think you're right: it's a skewed perspective. Most pets don't live like this, and I don't always realize that my crew actually gets a lot more attention than most.
 

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In red, silly wabbit, stop thinking that.

With the right breeder and training help you'd be able to handle one just fine. :)

Remember, this is just the internets, only the internets... ;)

<snipped>

I'm prone to thinking of this sort of stuff as just derpy silly tricks that I make up to amuse myself, because that's what it is. It's nowhere near as athletically demanding as agility, nowhere near as hard on the dog's nerves as Schutzhund. It's just silly stuff. So I don't think of my dogs as being particularly well trained, especially compared to some of the ones people have around here. And sometimes I wonder whether I'd be able to handle a working dog, given some of the other posts.

But yeah, I think you're right: it's a skewed perspective. Most pets don't live like this, and I don't always realize that my crew actually gets a lot more attention than most.
 

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:D

Hey did'ja get the 'single' patch to put on that JK9 harness yet? ;) :D




This forum is so :censored: exhausting.

So what is this- yet another thread on not humanizing our dogs? Or was this yet another thread on the "pet" population wanting a "watered down" GSD? Or maybe this was yet another thread on how only certain people should be able to own a representation of what the breed was "supposed" to be? Or maybe it's just another thread on the current state of the GSD?

Is there really nothing new to talk about? It's like the same threads over and over and over and over and...
:thumbsdown:
 

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You are challenging your dog mentally. You are teaching him very complex mental tasks. It's something I like to do with Lisl too. We haven't worked our way up to the 'fetch me a beer from the fridge' just yet, but that will come.

Lisl will never be a Schutzhund trained or titled dog, nor any other dog sport. But she learns what I need her to learn to behave herself and make her a joy to live with, have fun with, and be around.

We excercise each other physically as well. I walk more now than I did even walking or riding to work. We play ball or fetch with multiple toys and she has to bring me the correct toy back.

She also has to stop and drop the toy right where I tell her. I may then tell her to pick it up again and bring it to me, or throw a different toy she has to retrieve, and then go back and get the first toy. It keeps her mentally active as well as physically. She'll never learn to take down a perp, or walk on a 2x6 or scale a wall, but she knows what I want her to know.
 

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With the right breeder and training help you'd be able to handle one just fine. :)

Remember, this is just the internets, only the internets... ;)
I'm sure you're right. ;)

But you know, healthy self-doubt and humility keep us from getting in over our heads, right?

(...or so I tell myself. If it were actually true, I wouldn't be where I am right now, on the constant verge of head explosions until October...)
 

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:D

Hey did'ja get the 'single' patch to put on that JK9 harness yet? ;) :D
:rofl: No yet. I have to make him a bit more awesome in order to woo them in! Cuteness only gets you so far- at least that's what I'm told. ;)
 

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I am right...

(what was that about humility? ....hehehe how's that for a positive double entendre, one for you, one for me! :p ;) :D)


I'm sure you're right. ;)

But you know, healthy self-doubt and humility keep us from getting in over our heads, right?

(...or so I tell myself. If it were actually true, I wouldn't be where I am right now, on the constant verge of head explosions until October...)
 
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