German Shepherds Forum banner

1 - 20 of 26 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
7 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
We have been blessed with two fantastic GSDs. The first we adopted as a rescue overseas and brought home with us. Dale (standard black/brown) lived to be 15 and her passing in 2010 was one of the hardest things we've ever been through. Around Easter 2012 we made the decision to adopt again and Abby - a white (eventually white and tan) GSD joined our family. Sadly, Abby passed from cancer around Thanksgiving 2019. Again, we are gutted. I still expect her to be waiting for me at the door when I get home from work or when we arrive home after being out. I could've sworn I heard her shake last night. ?

Lots of our friends are encouraging us to get another dog and as much as I would love to, we're not getting any younger and another GSD is like having a child all over again! ?

We're trying to balance avoiding the knee-jerk reaction of getting another just because we miss Abby so much against how nice it is to not have a dog and not have her be the first thing we think of when we want to go somewhere. As everyone likely knows, carting Abby along consumed half our available space between her in the back seat and her bed, food, etc. in the back.

This post really doesn't have a right or wrong answer, we're just curious as to what everyone else in the GSD community thinks about getting another after the loss of two cherished family members.

Thanks!

557631
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
5,516 Posts
I just lost a 10 yo GSD, and have a 3 year old GSD. The last time I only had one dog was about 25 years ago. I’m a little freaked out about losing my remaining dog. She’s healthy, but I still worry. I’ve already decided if I should unexpectedly come up dog-less, that I will get another GSD from the owner of Scarlet’s sire. She has some really lovely dogs. It doesn’t necessarily have to be a puppy.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
525 Posts
First I'm sorry to hear about your loss...she was a very pretty dog. (from the pictures.)

I personally think that if you love them, you should get another! It's nice to hold on to the memories of a dog you loved, but it's also nice to be able to move on and start new. I think a new dog to love and enjoy can help you.

That an opinion, and I totally understand if it's not the way you want to go. Just a suggestion.
It's really your choice.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
99 Posts
Yes, I'm sorry you lost such a beautiful girl. We are also older and lost a good boy last September. Our's are watch dogs so we knew we needed another dog. Having one dog in our neighborhood people think there is something wrong with you. We took into account our age and discussed our choice with our grown children so we'd be sure someone would always be there for the dog and he wouldn't end up back at the shelter. we looked for an adult male and found Duke at the local shelter. He fooled everyone about his age - we have a 90 lb puppy. He's a handful but we're enjoying him a lot. He's almost housebroken and getting better about strewing the laundry all over the house and taking shoes but those are small silly things. Our Baby Huey is a sweetheart and fills that emptiness. And we're getting a lot of exercise, which is good. I'd recommend you visit the local shelters and look for an adult that needs a home and family when you are ready.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,802 Posts
I don't think you should. Owning a dog is a lifestyle, especially an active dog like a GSD. What really swayed my opinion is how much you appreciate the lifestyle of not having a dog.

May I suggest either fostering a GSD or volunteering at a local shelter?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
First I'm sorry to hear about your loss...she was a very pretty dog. (from the pictures.)

I personally think that if you love them, you should get another! It's nice to hold on to the memories of a dog you loved, but it's also nice to be able to move on and start new. I think a new dog to love and enjoy can help you.

That an opinion, and I totally understand if it's not the way you want to go. Just a suggestion.
It's really your choice.
Thank you very much for your kind wishes and sharing your thoughts!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
Yes, I'm sorry you lost such a beautiful girl. We are also older and lost a good boy last September. Our's are watch dogs so we knew we needed another dog. Having one dog in our neighborhood people think there is something wrong with you. We took into account our age and discussed our choice with our grown children so we'd be sure someone would always be there for the dog and he wouldn't end up back at the shelter. we looked for an adult male and found Duke at the local shelter. He fooled everyone about his age - we have a 90 lb puppy. He's a handful but we're enjoying him a lot. He's almost housebroken and getting better about strewing the laundry all over the house and taking shoes but those are small silly things. Our Baby Huey is a sweetheart and fills that emptiness. And we're getting a lot of exercise, which is good. I'd recommend you visit the local shelters and look for an adult that needs a home and family when you are ready.
Thank you! We've been blessed that both of our GSD were not "chewers" or diggers. I think having them young (Dale was about a year old when we adopted her and Abby was @ 5 months) helps.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
I don't think you should. Owning a dog is a lifestyle, especially an active dog like a GSD. What really swayed my opinion is how much you appreciate the lifestyle of not having a dog.

May I suggest either fostering a GSD or volunteering at a local shelter?
Thank you for your response. Don't read too much into us enjoying our season of selfish freedom; we've raised two boys (complete with club soccer, cross country and other sports), and have been devoted to two wonderful GSDs - how many would bring one all the way home to FL from the Middle East?

We are/were devoted to our GSDs. In fact, before Abby became ill, she demonstrated just how devoted she was to us when Mom was going on a road trip and Abby decided she wasn't ready to miss out...

557633
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,802 Posts
Thank you for your response. Don't read too much into us enjoying our season of selfish freedom; we've raised two boys (complete with club soccer, cross country and other sports), and have been devoted to two wonderful GSDs - how many would bring one all the way home to FL from the Middle East?

We are/were devoted to our GSDs. In fact, before Abby became ill, she demonstrated just how devoted she was to us when Mom was going on a road trip and Abby decided she wasn't ready to miss out...

View attachment 557633
Please don't read my comment as meaning something negative. There is nothing wrong with taking a break or choosing not to own another dog. Nothing wrong with it at all.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,193 Posts
Owning a dog is a lifestyle choice. Owning a GSD becomes your lifestyle As MAWL said. Every decision I make takes my dogs into account. Can they come with me? Is it too long to stay home alone? My house and yard are set up with my dogs in mind. Every vacation, every day trip, everything revolves around the dogs. If you want a 100% go dog, consider a smaller breed that can be carried. It makes life much easier.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
Owning a dog is a lifestyle choice. Owning a GSD becomes your lifestyle As MAWL said. Every decision I make takes my dogs into account. Can they come with me? Is it too long to stay home alone? My house and yard are set up with my dogs in mind. Every vacation, every day trip, everything revolves around the dogs. If you want a 100% go dog, consider a smaller breed that can be carried. It makes life much easier.
Thank you for your response. Your detail is exactly how it's been for us since the 90s with our two GSDs. That's really the question: do we want to have the GSD love while resetting after the loss of Abby and getting back into "everything revolves around her" mode? Not a fan of small dogs personally, so it's probably a GSD or nothing - we're sort of partial to the breed :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
Please don't read my comment as meaning something negative. There is nothing wrong with taking a break or choosing not to own another dog. Nothing wrong with it at all.
No worries here - just a friendly discussion. I asked for folks' thoughts on the matter and won't get mad if they share them :) (in a reasonable fashion!)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
212 Posts
I really think it depends on you. I currently have two GSD's and it definitely puts a lot of difficulty in terms of travelling / vacation / even going out for long periods of time. I'm constantly having to think of their needs, especially as my second dog is still only 5 months old. It's hard work for sure! Especially those frozen morning potty breaks! ?

I keep telling myself that this will be the last puppy for a long time (at least 10 years), maybe I'll have a long break in between dogs so I can catch up on vacations and travel that I have been putting off... but I think that's unlikely! Maybe you can get in touch with some rescues to start putting the thought out there, and see if the right dog finds you so to speak! :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,382 Posts
I'm 62, and my intellectual decision is, I suspect Nitro will be my last shepherd. (My emotional decision would be to replace him as I love owning a shepherd). He had his 6th birthday 2 weeks ago. Practically, the huge vet expenses I've had owning Nitro would be a hardship on a retirement income.

Nitro's not overweight, he weighs 95lbs, I can't carry him now, I suspect even a breed standard sized german shepherd would be a challenge to carry in an emergency, the older I get. I can keep on top of the dog fur and mud now without it being a burden, but I suspect in another decade or so, it could be a struggle to keep my house clean with a german shedder. Giving a german shepherd the exercise he needs to keep him mentally and physically healthy, the training and daily interaction, needs a fit and healthy person.

I'm off to the UK to visit some of my children later this year, it took over a year before they could talk me into it, because of me having a dog. (Shhh, please don't tell them). The 25 hour travel time from Australia was also a factor. Kind of sad really, that owning a dog influenced my decision to visit family.

For retirement when in my late 70's, I want a non shedding, small dog. A bichon frise will probably be the breed, without a 'poofy' hairstyle. I want a dog breed that's easy to live with, and to rehome, if I die before the dog does.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,193 Posts
Thank you for your response. Your detail is exactly how it's been for us since the 90s with our two GSDs. That's really the question: do we want to have the GSD love while resetting after the loss of Abby and getting back into "everything revolves around her" mode? Not a fan of small dogs personally, so it's probably a GSD or nothing - we're sort of partial to the breed :)
You got a good suggestion to foster. The rescue pays the bills, you pay for food. You foster until they find a home. Then you foster another one. If you go on vacation, the rescue takes the dog while you are gone. A friend does this with older dogs. She has no expenses and much less responsibility, while giving a dog a much needed home. Older dogs sometimes aren’t ever adopted.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7 Posts
Discussion Starter #18
I really think it depends on you. I currently have two GSD's and it definitely puts a lot of difficulty in terms of travelling / vacation / even going out for long periods of time. I'm constantly having to think of their needs, especially as my second dog is still only 5 months old. It's hard work for sure! Especially those frozen morning potty breaks! ?

I keep telling myself that this will be the last puppy for a long time (at least 10 years), maybe I'll have a long break in between dogs so I can catch up on vacations and travel that I have been putting off... but I think that's unlikely! Maybe you can get in touch with some rescues to start putting the thought out there, and see if the right dog finds you so to speak! :)
I like this line of thinking; thanks for responding :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,802 Posts
I want a dog breed that's easy to live with, and to rehome, if I die before the dog does.
Sad when you have to think this way but I know what you mean. This is why I tried a Blue Heeler on for size and have been very pleased her. Down the road thinking about maybe a Schipperke? Got herders in my blood.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,382 Posts
Sorry, I'm an optimistic person, but, I was at a friend's house 3 weeks ago, and she died unexpectedly while I and another friend were there. I'm glad we were there for her ....
 
1 - 20 of 26 Posts
Top