“Careful there, these dogs are dangerous”
We’ve heard this ever since we were kids. Especially when it’s about the neighbor’s Pit Bull or stray dogs. For various reasons, many people include German Shepherds into this category of extremely dangerous dogs. And, as a result, they would say something along the lines ‘These dogs are not for family and small children’, or ‘ You have to show who’s the alpha dog here and dominate your German Shepherd”. Both of which are incorrect and, moreover, dangerous.
First, let’s deal with the ‘dangerous for kids’ meme we’ve been sold
Yes, German Shepherds are used in police force, army, customs office, drug patrols and…you get it. But this doesn’t mean that all these institutions were looking for the most vicious dog they could think of! This means exactly the opposite! German Shepherds are incredibly smart, intuitive and loyal. They will not ‘jump the gun’ in high-intensity situations and will respond adequately to instructions from their handler.
The truth is that German Shepherds are great with kids. With proper care, treatment, and training they will become a full member of the family.
Dominate your dog to show who’s the boss
This is a common misconception about dogs. Especially those who can be called ‘fighting’ or guard dogs or special service dogs. And this is a really dangerous mistake to make. It is true that you have to make the dog understand that you’re the leader, the master of the household. But it is done not to make the dog be afraid of its owner! This simply makes the dog accept the leadership and understand the roles you have, which is completely normal and natural for dogs. Making a dog submit itself and be frightened of the owner is a risky path to take. It might seem tame and obedient, but this can result in unexpected attacks. Some of which may prove to be even lethal. Make sure you feel the difference between scaring your pet into submission and getting them to know who is the leader in your small pack.
There will be many people along the way who will offer their advice to you.
And it is great, don’t get me wrong. Everyone wants to play a part in your pet’s life. Just don’t let them drive you crazy into thinking that your German Shepherd dog is some sort of a menacing creature. it is simply not true. Don’t get careless at the same time. You have to control your pet, as their actions are now your responsibility.
Once all the difficult parts of training, getting the diet, the walks, and exercise regimes are figured out – it will be a smooth ride for the most part. German Shepherds are more suited to be trained than most other dogs. This will enable you to get the needed result and behavior in a shorter period of time. Even though the training of your pet is a continuous process and begins on day 1 – you will soon find it to be more of an enjoyable hobby, rather than a routine.
Ultimately, you have to enjoy the company of your pet. And you know what, German Shepherds are perfectly enjoyable companions.