So you're thinking of getting a German shepherd dog. No doubt, you are very excited. You've heard wonderful stories about the German shepherd dog and all their work as seeing eye dogs, search and rescue, and their work as a police dog. They are, without a doubt, one of the most wonderful breeds you could consider getting. But some points must be taken into consideration before purchasing or getting your new German shepherd. Failure to consider all the factors can result in disappointment for you and the dog.
A German shepherd, while cute and cuddly as a puppy, will grow up to be a large dog. Depending on its genetics, it can be anywhere from 70 to 120 pounds. This is a large animal. If you live in a small apartment, this doesn't mean that you can't get a German shepherd. Although they do like room to roam around, they can get along quite happily in an apartment provided they are given ample exercise outside each day. German Shepherds were bred years ago to be working dogs, and as a result, are loaded with bundles and bundles of energy. Being a large dog, they will eat a lot of food. This is also something that needs to be taken into consideration when choosing this breed.
Many dog owners choose to train the dog themselves, which is great if you have the time to devote to it. Training should be a consistent daily part of your German shepherd's life. They have always been known for their intelligence, which is another reason they should have some sort of training. It would be a shame to let all this energy and intelligence go to waste. They will thoroughly enjoy their training, considering it almost like play time with you. They have a drive that will seem to go on and on - you are liable to tire long before they do.
They are probably one of the most versatile dogs you can own. They protect and are very loyal to their family. The German shepherd has long had the reputation for being a one-man dog. In many ways, they can be considered a one-family dog. They are aloof with strangers and almost leery until they get to know them. Once they know a person, they have a friend for life.
The one issue that is very common with the German shepherd is the way they bond with their family. While this sounds loving and what you may want, it may become a problem if the dog is to be left alone for any length of time. German shepherds, more than any other dog, suffer greatly from separation anxiety. In some cases, it may become serious where you will have to have someone stay with your German shepherd when you leave him at home. Many dog owners don't have this problem if their dog was left alone from the time they were a small puppy. If it surfaces it is usually with an older dog that is always with someone and then suddenly left alone. It is very important that your German shepherd gets plenty of exercise to tire him or her out. This will also lessen the destructive behavior they may exhibit when left alone.