What Is It Like to Own a German Shepherd? Your Life Will Never Be the Same
The minute you bring home a German Shepherd, your life will never be the same. These are fearless and curious dogs that are full of energy. They have a reputation for being intelligent, loyal, protective, and always happy to be with you.
Owning a German Shepherd can be one of the most fabulous experiences you could ever have when it comes to pet ownership. Your GSD will take you to places you never would have visited, introduce you to people you never could have never met, and will most likely make you do things that you never thought you could have possibly done.
Here are some fun facts that let you have a sneak peek of what it is like to be a German Shepherd owner.
1. You will be exploring new places and new things to do
The German Shepherd Dog was bred to work for and work with people. They cannot be happier if they have something to do. Although they are not the most cuddly dog ever, and sometimes may even be aloof to strangers. But they love to explore new places. German Shepherds excel in a variety of activities including Schutzhund, herding, obedience, agility, obedience, tracking, and more. The options are nearly endless.
2. You will become more athletic
Don’t get a German Shepherd if you just want a dog to sit beside you to watch TV all day long. These are high-energy dogs and always need to be out and about. Walking, hiking, or playing fetch with your German Shepherd for at least 1 hour a day is the minimum. That said, within months you will feel like you are more athletic than you have ever been.
3. You will have a bodyguard 24/7
German Shepherds are hardwired to have strong guarding instincts. If trained properly, they’ll protect your house from intruders regardless. Chances are, they will even risk their lives to protect you against any threats.
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4. You will make lots of new friends as you socialize with your puppy
Walking with your German Shepherd, or any other dog will make us pick up a conversation much easier with strangers as well as other dog owners.
You will find yourself talking to other people about your German Shepherd and anything around you and your dog.
5. You won’t need a doorbell anymore
German Shepherds are protective of their owners and their property by nature. Therefore, when someone comes into an area your dog considers their territory, that will trigger barking. As the threat gets closer, the barking often gets more intense and frequent. It’s their gesture of warning. Before long, you don’t even need a doorbell.
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6. You will have a helper for your housekeeping chores
German Shepherds are working dogs and they love to work – especially with you as their owner. They are best known for their herding, guarding, scenting, and retrieving abilities.
Here are some of the chores you can assign to your beloved GSD:
Tidying up their toys: You can make it their job by asking them to retrieve all their toys and drop them in a designated bin.
Getting stuff: You can teach him to bring you your shoes, backpack, jacket or even his own leash before going out for a walk.
Keeping track of family members: If you have a whole pack of pets, teach your herding dog how to gather the other dogs and even the cats.
Carrying your grocery: You can train your pooch to carry in the grocery bags from the car or help you carry items upstairs is very helpful.
7. You will always have someone to talk to
German Shepherds are wonderful companion dogs as well as good listeners. They love to sit down with you while you spend the day speaking to them about how you feel and what went on.
Studies have also found people owning pets are less likely to suffer from depression. This breed is seriously going to help you relieve your stress level since you are sure that you’ll have someone to talk to – and they never judge you and seems to understand you more than anyone else.
8. You will have a lot of fun – for sure
Being with an intelligent breed like a German Shepherd is sometimes challenging. In fact, like most other dogs, German Shepherds are children that will never grow up even when they aged. Yet, once you’ve developed a bond with your furry friend, they will do whatever pleases you. And oftentimes it may even be surprisingly hilarious.
Watch this video about the funny things that a GSD owner experienced.
Like everything in the world, there are two sides to a coin. We have gone through some of the good stuff GSD owners will experience, lets see some of the cons below.
9. You will have no privacy
Starting from the day you bring her home, you will have a shadow following you wherever you go, to the yard, in the living room, into the kitchen, and even to the bathroom.
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10. You will always be looking for a more powerful vacuum
German Shepherds have a double coat of medium length. Not only will GSDs shed day in day out, but they also lose all their undercoat twice a year (in spring and fall).
You will find fur on ALL your clothes, on your bed (no doubt), on your couch, in your car, on your plate and anywhere you can or cannot imagine. Soon you will find yourself not wearing black anymore. And you are always looking for a more powerful vacuum to make your life easier.
11. Concerts, movies, high-end restaurants will become obsolete
When you have a German Shepherd, you can’t go to a restaurant. You can’t go on holiday without them. You can’t go anywhere without your dog. (She will follow wherever you go.) But you will find yourself in parks or trails with your GSD as the best company in all weather conditions.
12. Your remote control, shoes, cell phone, wall, or furniture may be at risk
German Shepherds are also known as “land sharks” for good reasons. Some dogs, like German Shepherds, chew more often than others. From shoes and furniture to remote controls and underwear, even if it doesn’t look like it could be chewed up, your dog will probably put it in their mouth. Nevertheless, plenty of physical and mental exercises and regular training can alleviate some of the causes of destructive chewing.
13. You will go to the vet more often than you might have thought of
In fact, most GSDs are prone to common health issues because of their breed’s history. Some are related to the size of these dogs.
Common health issues for GSD may include:
- Skin allergies
- Ear infections
- Sensitive stomach (diarrhea)
More serious health issues for (senior) GSDs are:
- Hip dysplasia (this is the most common one)
- Elbow dysplasia
- Bloat (twisted stomach that caused sudden death)
- Urinary Tract Infections (it may develop to kidney stones if left untreated)
- Progressive Retinal Atrophy (that causes night blindness)
That said, you need to prepare yourself emotionally and financially with the chance that your German Shepherd may get sick and need extra care in her later years.
German Shepherd is one of a kind. They are just gorgeous and loveable. They teach us how to be better owners, givers, handlers, and people. Most owners will agree that having a German Shepherd (or even more than one) will change your life for the better. And the bottom line is, you can never imagine life without having a German Shepherd around you.