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I have a 4 month old Rottweiler/hound X puppy. We had initially wanted a GSD, but my wife had seen this little girl in a rescue shelter, and low and behold we ended up with a dog. So now we have an opportunity to get a German Shepherd (German blood lined) from one of the best breeders in the Pacific Northwest. We have been on the waiting list for a long time. So we have decided to get a male puppy. My question is, what are some things that you wish somebody would have told you, or wish you would have known about the German Shepherd breed before you had brought one home. I think we have been very spoiled with our little Rotti/X. She is already potty trained, she is really calm for being a puppy, learned sit, stay and lay down in a matter of 1/2 a day, was crate trained after the first night, etc.... I just know it won't be this easy with another dog. Any advice would be much appreciated.
 

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WOW two young pups is gonna be alot of work.

GSD are very smart and very loyal. Most of them are velcro dogs and you will almost always have a GSD underfoot. I currently have two velcro dogs.

I cant think of anything that I would consider a down side to have a GSD. Not sure of anything I didnt know but wish I did. Maybe the potential for ear infections, but to me it is not that big of a deal
 

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Re: What you wish you would have known about the G

I didn't get the option of knowing anything before - I was born into a family with GSDs.

Somethings my parents didn't teach me:

Leadership skills. I wasn't until I had my own house and it took some adjustment to go from being a pack member to being the leader (where my mom used to be).

NILIF

Dealing with aggression

Prong collars

Crates

The shedding was a given for me, growing up with them. This is more of a vent and moan that I didn't pay attention to what mom was using to get the dog fur off the rugs. 4 vacuums later, I just bought an Electrolux like Mom's. She's had 2 in 35 years, the first one still works it's just too heavy. Moan oh woe is me, the 4 cheaper ones cost more combined than the electrolux I just bought.

*NOTE* the electrolux oxygen line they sell at Lowes and Bernies is just an eureka in a fancy case - IT"S NOT a real electrolux. I have one of those, it's broken AGAIN in my basement and I ain't fixin' that pig!!!
 

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Re: What you wish you would have known about the G

i really didnt have any surprises aside from the shedding. even tho i was warned i figured "duh, all dogs shed" but gsd SHED. even now i'll say that my dogs shed minimally unless its a seasonal coat blow - but what i should add is minimally for a gsd... which could still be about the same or more than other breeds.

i also thought that HD was the death sentence... i would have never imagined it to be as manageable as it has been. inconvenient at times, but i still have an overall happy dog!
 

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I wish someone would have told me that my pup would have grown to be smarter than me. LOL. I tried to teach her something and she sat there and looked at me with this grin on her face as if to say wow you have no idea that I already know that and am watching you make a fool of yourslf. LOL

They brains need to be worked and stimulated as much as their growing bodies do.
 

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Who are you getting your puppy from?
 

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Re: What you wish you would have known about the G

I apologize for not knowing her name off hand. I'm at work and my memory is shot this early in the morning. The breeder is a Vetrinarian in Roundup, MT who's family has been breeding German blood lined GSD's for 30+ years. Most of her puppies are being sold for military/police use. We have done a lot of speaking to and researching of breeders and she has come highly recommended.
 

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Re: What you wish you would have known about the G

Years ago, I wish I had known that GSDs understand the English language. :-D

Actually, most novice people do not realize that GSDs come in so many different flavors and personalities bec. it is the most overbred purebreed of dog, so it comes in more "types" than any other breed. Yes, all the types shed. :-D

But different types, lines and individuals can have widely varying personalities: some are shy, some are bold, some are more aggressive than others, some are smarter than others, some are healthier than others, some have more drive than others, etc.
Just keep researching on this site and you will be an Internet expert in no time at all.
As a start, it's a good idea to be familiar with the GSD standard.
http://www.akc.org/breeds/german_shepherd_dog/index.cfm

http://www.workingdogs.com/standard_fci.htm

Did you know that there is more than one breed standard?!
 

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Re: What you wish you would have known about the G

Originally Posted By: GusGus Most of her puppies are being sold for military/police use.
How is that? Does she train her dogs for that purpose? As far as I know the police/military don't buy 8 week old puppies.
 

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Re: What you wish you would have known about the G

Not exactly sure, but I think she is only selling some of the puppies out of each litter, then raising the rest to young adulthood for that purpose. I didn't inquiry much about that.
 

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Re: What you wish you would have known about the G

Someone just reminded me. I never counted on having to spell so Rocky would not know what I was talking about. LMAO
 

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Re: What you wish you would have known about the G

NILIF

That would've helped a lot with our previous dog. Also, how much exercise they need. I however grew up with GSDs so the exercising thing I learned along the way. NILIF is new. I did always like how cuddly they were, and their soulful eyes. I swear there's no other animal whose eyes are as soulful as the GSD.
 

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Re: What you wish you would have known about the G

train train train!! even when they have mastered all the commands. keep on doing it. heck teach them something pointless just to keep there minds working. another example once u have voice commands down work on hand signals
 

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Re: What you wish you would have known about the G

Icht2's post also reminded me that I wish I would have known that GSD's are better visual learners than audible learners because I would have said the command and the the hand signal at the same time so he would associate them as the same thing.
 

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Another pup, a bit difficult. I got my GSD from a good breeder in Wisconsin. My daughter, who works with dogs and I drove a few hundred miles to pick him up at eight weeks.

My family owns seven other dogs and like me, most are opionated. But among the Chow, the labs, one of Championship caliber,, the Chow and the Hurricance Katrina rescue, they are all beginning to recognize that the GSD I have, Timber, simply is the best.

A week ago I tore some muscles in my leg, and am now on crutches. The darn dog knows that, and his response to walks, jumping on me, etc. has changed. Some people say the GSD is not affectionate, but in my case that is simply not true.

Timber was so easy to train, I told my breeder it was unreal. I can train him to do anything I wish, that is a large commitment, and I do not always have the time.

I like the European GSD breed and in part bought Timber for that reason. The biggest drawback is shedding. In a few days I can fill a small waste basket just combing him. I also think he GSD needs plenty of training or play. Tme permitting on your end great, if not, reconsider.

I add the afore-mentioned because you mentioned you have a chance to get a high end Shepherd from a good breeder.

As for a female Rotti and a male GSD. Based on my experience as a Shepherd rescue guy, my hunch is they will get along fine, albeit the first few days may be tough.

The one thing missing is the enviroment the new GSD will be brought into, For example, if you have a have,a yard, etc. great.
Fenced, of course better, but not always necessary. An apartment, in my opinion, much moe difficult.

I also appreciate your wife's decision to take the Rotti. Good for you and her.

Of course you can tell I am a GSD nut.

Let us know your decision.
 

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i would just say that although this isn't a big deal, i do kind of wish i would have known that some gsd's suffer from fear aggression. i worked through it with mine and he is much better, but still is very wary of things. he is better now that he is a year old. i also socialized him lots when he was a young pup. it comes from his mother. she is a scaredy cat. other then that, i wouldn't trade my gsd for the world. out of the 4 other breeds that i own, i must say that he is the most loyal dog i have ever owned and i luv him!!!!
 

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I got my dog as a puppy, also from German working lines. My understanding was that these dogs tend to have a lot more energy. But even with that understanding, I was not prepared for that puppy. I was literally exhausted for the first year I had her. If it weren't for the dog park and doggie day care, I would have gone insane. I think it will be really helpful that you have the Rott puppy. They can play together and tire themselves out.

GSDs shed A LOT!! But they're worth it.

You definitely have to be the boss. I have the tendency to want to give in to my dog and not bother fighting the battles (such as in making her walk properly on a leash) and have had to learn to toughen up. If it weren't for my husband (who's the total alpha), I would have ruined her! The great thing is that you're dog will still love you even though you're the boss.

Okay. My husband told me to add this: Dog is stubborn and high energy. She's stand-offish and stoic. (And I think it's so funny because it sound just like him!!)
 

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Re: What you wish you would have known about the G

As far as the living situation, we live in the city, but have a little over 1/4 of an acre of 6' fenced yard, so plenty of room to play. A couple weekends ago we were visiting with the breeder again, (we've become good friends) and our rotti X puppy played with her 75 lb. 5 month old male GSD puppy non stop for 3 or 4 hours, and they got along great. Our rotti Lena is really great so far with both cats and dogs, so I'm not too worried about her being good with another puppy. As far as the German blood lined GSD's goes, from the research that we have done, it sounds like (and our breeder seems to agree) that the German lined GSD's tend to have a better "off switch" than the US lined dogs. I don't want to offend any of the US lined fans or anything that is not my intention, just what we have researched. Our breeder used the example of how her dogs, who she trains in Schutzhund, are able to go from bite, and then when she gives the off command, they turn off the agression and go and play with her kids. She was saying how she has seen more U.S. lined dogs not as able to flip that switch. Now granted, maybe most of that is probably in the training, but this is just what she had said.

So far with our rotti pup, we have worked really really hard at everyone in the house being the alpha. We have a 4 year old daughter, and that is our challenge. She doesn't quite understand that Lena needs to sit, or fetch or something, then when she does it, go ahead and give her all the affection that you want. We're working on it though. But then again Lena has been a really easy puppy. I would like to think that it is a result of all of our hard work, but I also think that is just part of her nature.
 
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