Friday, July 11, 2014
Why We Like The German Shepherd Dog Breed
They are devoted and extremely loyal. They are often used for police, military and guard duty. They make excellent family companions and unless trained otherwise they are friendly, gentle, and loving. they are good around children but can be protective and because of size can bump small children down. They are currently number three on the AKC most popular breed list. I have personally loved the breed since I was a newspaper carrier at age 12. They were the only dog who would not chase me on my bike.
Our three all have totally different personalities. Bozwell is contemplative and solves problems. His intelligence is so great that we often have to be careful what we talk about as he has a vocabulary equal to an 8-9 y/o child. Sarah is more with drawn and shy. She loves attention but only if she is ready for it. She is very cautious but also highly intelligent with a large vocabulary. Many dogs understand a single command like sit, stay, down, come etc. Sarah along with our other two understand more complex requests in the form of a sentence or series of sentences. Echo is reserved and a follower. He will wait and evaluate before he engages in an activity. He almost turns himself inside out to please us and has never failed to do so.
German Shepherds seem to be believed to be barkers. Not ours. The ones which bark seem to be the ones trained for police work, military use or lack basic training altogether. Ours are very alert and let us know if anything is around but do not bark more than one or two barks to make sure we know something is amiss so we can investigate.
That pretty well sums up why we love the breed and more specifically our three. It is hard to imagine life without them. Most people underestimate their intelligence and therefore lose a great deal of companionship. We talk to our three all the time and they hear and comprehend what is being said. If a normal dog knows 150 words a German Shepherd is capable of learning 1000. An average dog may fetch their bone but a German Shepherd would relate better to "Where is your bone? Why don't you go find it and bring it here".
German Shepherds are fearless and will easily sacrifice themselves for you. If challenged they will not back down. They also do not like rough treatment. When the census taker came around he ask if he could come in and sit down to write. I told him we had three large dogs so he could come in but not to pay attention to them until I told him it was okay (they look and evaluate). He sat on the couch arm and when Bozwell did come up to him he ;unexpectedly grabbed him by the muzzle. Bozwell backed away and I told him not to do that again. Well it happened again and I told him more forcefully once again to not do that. What do you know but he did it again and this time Bozwell took matters into his own mouth so to speak. He grabbed his arm (he had on a winter coat) and without bruise, tearing cloth or breaking the skin he held his arm firmly with adequate pressure. 750 lbs per square inch can get peoples attention. He then let the guy go on command and the census taker commented that he now saw what I meant by not grabbing him by the muzzle. Lesson learned, but his next lesson if Boz didn't correct him would be me throwing him off the deck for rudeness and plain stupidity. I'm not sure why he didn't think my telling him not to do something was insufficient in the first place.
German Shepherds are great problem solvers and very gently for their size providing you do not get rough with them. Ours have never had rough treatment or harsh words. As a result they are gentle, loving and excellent family members. We just have to be careful what we say because they understand far more than most people would believe. Yelling or harsh words is probably the worst thing you can do as they react to that fearfully. They are a breed worth considering if you want and can deal with a highly intelligent canine.