History Of The German Shepherd
The German Shepherd came to light during a time period in Germany when dogs were bred for specific work purposes. At this time in the 1850s, Shepherds were breeding dogs who people believed would herd their sheep and protect their livestock.
It was the popular opinion that dogs should have a purpose, and many were in search of the perfect dog for their working needs.
Among those who were on the hunt for skilled working dogs, was a man named Max von Stephanitz. He was an ex-cavalry captain, and a former student at the Berlin Veterinary College.
While attending a dog show in 1899, he came across a dog that stopped him in his tracks. The striking dogs name was Hektor Linksrhein, and his traits made him everything that Stephanitz believed a working dog should be.
Hektor was stunning, strong, and incredibly intelligent. Stephanitz immediately purchased Hektor, and began the incredible journey that became the starting point of the German Shepherd.
Hektor, soon named Horand, became the center of the new organization, Society of the German Shepherd Dog.
Stephanitz founded this organization with the hopes of establishing an incredible foundation for breeding working dogs, and creating an entire breed just like Horand.
He bred those who followed Horand to be fiercely driven, loyal, protective, and intelligent.
Stephanitz is now credited for creating the German Shepherd, and in hand responsible for some of the desirable traits passed down in the German Shepherd breed.
How Do German Shepherds Like To Cuddle
German Shepherds like to cuddle when it comes naturally. Theyd prefer to approach you and lie next to you. Or nose you, brush against your leg. Maybe lean on you. These are all signs of affection indicating your German Shepherd wants to be physically close to you. And spend some time touching you.
In general, dogs will not like it if youre forcing them to a hug or a cuddle. A dog will see a hug or a cuddle as a threat or a restraint if its coming from someone theyre not close to.
Its quite the same for us humans when it comes to showing and receiving physical affection. You wouldnt want it from someone you are not close to. Nor ever give it to someone you do not like or know.
Its always a matter of connection and trust the same goes for dogs like German Shepherds.
I used the term quite in reference to our similarities with dogs when it comes to hugging. This is because they also have a lot of significant differences that we need to consider.
If we like long hugs, your German Shepherd may not. If we like arms wrapping, your German Shepherd may like something else.
Do not be left wondering if your German Shepherd is not into arms wrapping. Your dog may prefer their version of skinship by leaning beside you when the two of you rest.
When they rub their head or whole body against you to try and catch your attention, its already cuddling.
German Shepherd As Pets: Do They Make The Cut
Dogs are often described as mans best friend. But this friendship did not always exist. Our four-legged furry friends were once part of the feral wolves family until we decided to domesticate them and bring them into our homes.
Recent studies suggest that dogs may have been domesticated as early as 35,000 years ago. Since then, they have lived with us as hounds, drovers, sled-dogs, guards and watchdogs, and most especially close friends.
German Shepherds have become famous as good pets, even though some criticize this move. The critics will retain that the present-day German Shepherd has lost the glory of the original working dog as intended by von Stephanitz, and, for the same reason, they have become susceptible to disease.
Despite the controversy, many characteristics make German Shepherds good pets. Check out this really cool 5-minute video from Animal Wised all about the GSD. Its an interesting watch and will give you a brief overview of this gorgeous breed:
We will now take a look at the most prominent pet-qualities of a German Shepherd Dog.
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German Shepherds Are Highly Adaptable
If you love to travel or move house often, you sure want a dog that will easily adapt to change. The German Shepherd is versatile and amazingly good at adapting to different situations, whether it is about cold and hot climates, living in an apartment or a ranch house, or being part of a small or large family.
The German Shepherd is good at adapting to climatic changes due to their natural shedding schedules. But in other behavioral aspects, their adaptability is linked to its intelligence. The earlier mentioned Dr. Stanley Coren proposes that dogs have three dimensions of intelligence: instinctive, adaptive, and working and obedience intelligence.
Breeds that rank high in adaptive intelligence like the German Shepherd learn to do a lot for themselves. They benefit from interacting with a new environment and can solve problems in such an environment. This implies that your GSD will adapt easily if you move to a new place or if the family structure changes, for example, the arrival of a new baby.
Conclusively, if we were to evaluate the German Shepherd on these good pet qualities, we will certainly give them a mark that confirms they make the cut to being awesome pets.
However, owning a German Shepherd is not only about the pet, but its also about the owner, you!
How you relate and live with this breed can greatly determine if your dog is a good pet or not. So, are you a good fit for a German Shepherd pet? Find out in the next section
Personality Traits Of A German Shepherds
German Shepherds are a breed that is medium to large-sized. They are quite popular in the police force, to search for drugs after being trained. They are a robust breed of a dog and they are great when it comes to surveillance purposes as well. Apart from that German Shepherds give off a vibe that tells the person not to provoke them or they will attack.
This sort of fear is excellent for people who want protection in situations where they have been in a traumatic situation and need some sort of protection to keep them safe and mentally stable in everyday life.
They come in relatively dark colors which adds to the factor of fear. Which some may see as negative but is a positive aspect of the German shepherd. Regardless of the seemingly dangerous face, German Shepherds are very kind and loyal to their owners and love them a lot. For these reasons, the German shepherd is one of the most popular breeds of dogs to exist around the world.
Also, if you ignore their faces, they can be one of the calmest and caring dogs in existence. Which makes them quite appropriate to keep as pets in your house. People love these dogs for that specific reason.
What Makes Them Great For Training
Because the dog is of a calm and collected nature, it is quite easy to get their excessive barking situation under control with a few days of teaching the dog.
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Will My German Shepherd Protect Me Without Training
Any German Shepherd you have developed a bond with will likely be protective over you even if they have not received any specialized training to do so.
Whether they are working dogs or companion dogs, protectiveness is something that is in their nature and not necessarily learned. In fact, training GSDs for protective work only involves honing and directing their innate guarding abilities. It is not about teaching them how to be protective in the first place.
Even without formal training, German Shepherds have the intelligence necessary to identify potential threats to their domain or family. They also have the courage and confidence to ward off those threats and even physically engage them if they deem it necessary.
Lastly, they are known to develop deep bonds with their keepers, for whom they have a strong sense of loyalty and desire to protect.
Are German Shepherds Natural Guard Dogs
My German Shepherd keeps wondering in my house and when the bell rings he goes to the gate quickly as if he is the guard of my house. I feel very relaxed when he does such protecting behavior. One day I thought Are German Shepherds natural guard dogs?
German Shepherds are very loyal to their owners and protective. If trained well they can play the role of the natural guard as they are bred to protect the people, livestock, and property. German Shepherds are also favorite among the police and military, they also use this breed in various operations because of their bravery, strength, endurance, speed, and intelligence.
Being socialized dogs, they are easy to train but the instinct of guarding differs among various breeds of the dogs. As compared to other breeds, GSD can be the best option for the average owner because of its loyalty and friendly nature.
According to the American Kennel Club, German Shepherds are the most registered breed in 2020, so if you want to have a pet like a German Shepherd then you can try as they are easy to adopt.
You can also watch this video to know how a German Shepherd be a Guard Dog?
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Are German Shepherds Aggressive
There are times when a protective nature can turn into plain aggression towards strangers. This risk is much higher if your GSD hasnt been trained and socialized well as a puppy.
And, the potential for aggression in this breed is no myth. In fact, its supported by several scientific studies.
And, yet another ranked the breed higher than average for stranger-directed aggression, but lower than average for stranger-directed fear. This could suggest the aggression came from something other than fear.
If dogs arent motivated by fear, they may be aggressive as a way to protect their owners, their things, or themselves from a perceived threat.
Their Individual Personality And Upbringing
How your dog will age depends on how you take care of them. This includes their basic training, your approach to discipline, and the environment you cultivate for them.
It is common to hear prejudice towards a certain breed of dog from people who solely treat dogs by their breed. Not all Great Danes are gentle giants is just as valid as not all German Shepherds are aggressive.
A German Shepherd that socializes at a young age will grow up to become a secure dog.
German Shepherds learn fast and are highly-intellectual. The reason why their potential to learn physical affection shouldnt go to waste.
So much of it is up to you.
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Are German Shepherd Puppies Stubborn
It is a fact that German Shepherds are among the brightest and most intelligent working dogs. And the desire to please you most owners can succeed at training their dog on their own. Because of their intelligence, German Shepherds can sometimes be stubborn. They need a firm hand and a smart approach to their training.
How Do You Discipline A German Shepherd Puppy
How to Discipline a German Shepherd Puppy Learn How to Discipline a German Shepherd Puppy the Right Way.Start early and remain consistent with your expectations.Use reward-based training.Ignore jumping when your pup wants attention.Redirect bad German Shepherd puppy behavior.Use time-outs appropriately.Ignore the unnecessary barking.More items
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Adapting To Social Routine
Since German Shepherds are capable of barking at friends that visit until they become more comfortable with guests, it is wise to socialize your GSD immediately upon arriving home for the very first time when they are a puppy.
If you happen to adopt an adult GSD, you should slowly introduce friends and relatives to your dog.
How to socialize your GSD puppy:
It is rare, but if you notice that your pup is experiencing extreme stress, anxiety, fear or anger in social situations seek help from a trained professional.
Licensed dog training specialists have the ability to focus on the behavior problems and offer a solution.
They will teach you how to correct your dogâs behavior by providing you with helpful tips and tools. Following the professional dog trainerâs advice is essential to your GSD pupâs behavior improving.
If you find that the training is not helping, visit the veterinarian for further assistance.
The Dangers Of A German Shepherds Protective Instincts
While its great to know that your German Shepherd, be it trained or not, will most likely protect you, there are some dangers that come with your GDSs protective instincts.
For example, if your German Shepherd grows to be overprotective, it may mistake innocent situations as threats. Your dog may view someone trying to hug you as someone trying to hurt you, and thus may get aggressive due to a harmless gesture. Sometimes your dog may even unleash its fury on a person or pet that simply comes near you.
This is of course unideal as youd want your dog to protect you from threats, not limit you from some of the pleasures that life has to offer.
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How To Get A German Shepherd To Be More Protective
If you do get a German Shepherd and you want to make sure that it is protective, it will be necessary for you train it to be protective the way you want it to be. Below are some things you can do to get it to be more protective of you and your home. I have written more about how you can get your GSD to be more protective in this post.
Enroll in a defense training class
The most effective way to get a GSD to be protective would be to enroll it in a defense class. However, it is important to be aware that it would likely result in the dog being much less well behaved around friendly people. So, it would only be recommended to enroll it in a defense class if you only want it to be protective.
Train it using the panic word method
The panic word method focuses on training your German Shepherd to become protective when you say a certain word.
To train it to learn the panic word you would do as follows:
Get some treats that your dog likes
- Give it a small treat so that it knows that you have treats
- Wait for it to bark by teasing it with the treat if necessary
- Reward it when it barks or when it shows a sign of barking
- Continue to do the above each time you show it the treat say the command word so that it learns that the command word means to bark
You can watch the video below to see how it is done
Use positive reinforcement training to get it to protect your home
You can also use positive reinforcement training to get it to become more protective of your home.
You can do this by
Do German Shepherds Like Affection
So do German Shepherds like affection like many other dog breeds?
Most small breeds are very energetic and require the attention and love of their owners to stay happy and in good health. Without affection, many dog breeds can become sad and even act out.
German Shepherds like the majority of other dog breeds do indeed like affection. After all, they are very loyal dogs and enjoy the affection of their owner.
However, the amount of affection that a German Shepherds enjoys will greatly vary from one dog to the next.
Some German Shepherds may enjoy a lot of attention and affection, on the other hand, some may prefer to be left to do their own thing.
Keep in mind that the nature of German Shepherds means that they will usually be very friendly and enjoy the affection of their owners and family.
After living with a family for a while they will consider them part of the pact and therefore look out for and protect them.
They will typically enjoy cuddling and being played with by these people as they will have formed a close bond.
German Shepherds will most likely not be the type of dog that instantly becomes friendly with strangers.
They can sometimes act out aggressively towards strangers, if they feel the need to protect and they sense a threaten by strangers.
So, it naturally follows that German Shepherds will most likely not enjoy being snuggled by people they have just met, although this will vary between different dogs.
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Do German Shepherds Like To Cuddle
In general, german shepherds like to cuddle, however, it always depends on the individual. Some dogs like lots of affection and to spend time with you. Other dogs perhaps, enjoy spending more time on their own and only come to you every so often.
Both are fine and dont inherently show theres anything wrong with your dog. Some just have more independent personalities while others are more owner and family-oriented.
Myth #5 Do German Shepherds Bite
This is kind of an odd myth, but one that is out there regardless.
For some reason, German Shepherds have gotten a bad rap as a breed, known for biting.
Perhaps this myth is again fed by the breedsuse in aggressive jobs or maybe their size and imposing stature cause people toassume that they will be biters.
Fact: This is an unfairly earned myth. German Shepherds are not generallyknown to be biters. Biting is a bad habit that is encouraged by poor trainingand poor socialization.
According to the American Kennel Club, German Shepherds account for less than 2 percent of reported dog bites.
In fact, Americas favorite breed, the Labrador Retriever is more likely to bite a person than a German Shepherd. For dogs, biting is a response to fear and a need to defend themselves.
If a German Shepherd bites, its likely there is a reason. Few dogs bite without being provoked.
However, a well socialized and trained dog is more likely to be calm in a greater variety of situations, which can also reduce the risk of biting.
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