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Thread: what's a good companion dog for a german shepherd?

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    Default what's a good companion dog for a german shepherd?

    There's this kind of woosy german shepherd my friend has, and he's going to be travelling for a couple months so he wants to get her a brother or sister. He wanted to get a basenji-- and the three I've met were fucking freaks. I suggested a belgian shepherd, bull dog, or whippet.

    I need a dog with a mellow temperment, who gets along with dogs and cats (low predator drive...which probably knocks out the whippet). The house is kind of small, so it'd be nice to get a medium to small sized dog, but the backyard is pretty huge.

    ideas?

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    Default Re: what's a good companion dog for a german shepherd?

    labradoodle... labrador... or...a low-slung basset... though they are pretty stoopid... maybe too mellow.

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    Default Re: what's a good companion dog for a german shepherd?

    When I bred GSDs, they got along with most of my other dogs... mutts, a few toy breeds, and some spaniels.
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    Default Re: what's a good companion dog for a german shepherd?

    my shih tzus seem to get along with most other breeds of dogs and there's *no* predator drive there

    Love it!

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    Default Re: what's a good companion dog for a german shepherd?

    Quote Originally Posted by fancygirl View Post
    I need a dog with a mellow temperment, who gets along with dogs and cats (low predator drive...which probably knocks out the whippet). The house is kind of small, so it'd be nice to get a medium to small sized dog, but the backyard is pretty huge.
    The mellow, low prey thing kinda eliminates the Belgian Shepherd too. Why not just check out petfinder.org for what's available? Look for a shelter that temperment tests...



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    Default Re: what's a good companion dog for a german shepherd?

    Yes they are, they are also very loyal. German shepherd are the best.
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    Default Re: what's a good companion dog for a german shepherd?

    Quote Originally Posted by leilanicandy View Post
    Yes they are, they are also very loyal. German shepherd are the best.
    Yep, once you've had a German Shepherd, other breeds just aren't even a consideration.

    Except, in this case.

    Since, what you're looking for is a companion for a German Shepherd; and since, that's usually a good idea; and since you don't have a specific breed preference, it would seem to be time to head over to the local "animal shelter" or SPCA and pick a mellow, etc., etc. mixed breed that otherwise may not have long to live.

    What are you waiting for? Go!
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    Default Re: what's a good companion dog for a german shepherd?

    i actualy know a lot about dog breeds. way more than someone should. heh anyway.... here's my suggestions. sizes are small to large in no order. i left out "tiny" breeds and "huge" breeds. i also left out breeds that are aggressive towards other animals or need a huge ammount of excersize or one on one time.

    golden retreiver, bulldog (both), lab (although some can be hyper), boston terrier, collie, corgi, shetland sheepdog (aka sheltie) <-- that's what my first dog was. excellent dogs. if you wanted to go a bit smaller i'd say stick with terriers or spaniels since (although the breeds vary) they tend to be more playfull and "big dog at heart" than other small or toy breeds. on a whole, terriers will do better with other dogs than spaniels.

    i have a 50/50 chihuahua yorkie mix. 6 lbs and she thinks she's a massive dog. she's playfull, fun, smart, but she's PICKY about other dogs and another people. i think that's the chihuahua 1/2 of her though.

    my mom has a german shepherd and a lab/chow mix. they're the best of friends. chows CAN be aggressive, but the mixes don't seem to tend toward it as much.

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    Default Re: what's a good companion dog for a german shepherd?

    Quote Originally Posted by Silverback View Post
    Since, what you're looking for is a companion for a German Shepherd; and since, that's usually a good idea; and since you don't have a specific breed preference, it would seem to be time to head over to the local "animal shelter" or SPCA and pick a mellow, etc., etc. mixed breed that otherwise may not have long to live.
    Best advice ever!

    The shelter should be able to show you which doggies are good companion pets and are good with other dogs. They might even let you bring the German Shepherd so he can pick out his friend!

    As a former volunteer, I can say that I spent enough time with the animals to help someone make an educated decision about who they took home. Talk to the people who work there, even those who volunteer. It's the volunteers who get to be most social with the dogs.

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    Default Re: what's a good companion dog for a german shepherd?

    while I'm all for a shelter animal, and will suggest it to him, I think he's looking for a pure bred without any social problems (something rare in the shelters.) He's going to be spending a lot of time from home...

    he wanted to get a basenji though. YUCK! Piggy turd dogs who SHOULD be cute (and there's something weird-cool with their bark) but aren't.

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    Default Re: what's a good companion dog for a german shepherd?

    Quote Originally Posted by fancygirl View Post
    while I'm all for a shelter animal, and will suggest it to him, I think he's looking for a pure bred without any social problems (something rare in the shelters.)
    Tell him to watch out for some breeders. Some of the animals that come from breeders are so overbred they have a lot more than social problems.

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    Default Re: what's a good companion dog for a german shepherd?

    Quote Originally Posted by fancygirl View Post
    while I'm all for a shelter animal, and will suggest it to him, I think he's looking for a pure bred without any social problems (something rare in the shelters.) He's going to be spending a lot of time from home...

    he wanted to get a basenji though. YUCK! Piggy turd dogs who SHOULD be cute (and there's something weird-cool with their bark) but aren't.
    Not all shelter dogs have social problems...in fact most do not. And in many shelters....dogs are screened for social skills(including but not limited to how they get along with other animals) before they are put up for adoption.And being pure bred will not ensure anything in that arena.

    Most shelters will let you bring in your current dog to see if they get along with the one you want to adopt. So I'd suggest going in...finding one YOU like and then going back with your Shepherd to make sure they like each other.
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    Default Re: what's a good companion dog for a german shepherd?

    Why not a private rescue? Many of them are in foster homes where the foster home have lived with the dog and can tell you the temperament of the dog. Also, many rescues accept returns of the dog if things don't work out, and most are willing to work with good homes to find a great match.

    For example, my friend's Greyhound lives happily with her 5 cats, but hates dogs. My other friend's Greyhound cannot live with cats but loves dogs.

    I wouldn't focus on the breed but your space/time requirements, the temperament of the present dog (dominant, etc) and match that with the temperament of the individual dog. Dogs are like people in that they have individual personalities that can vary GREATLY within each breed. It's more important to think of what characteristics you're looking for, rather than focus on breeds.

    If you want, I can give you referrals to some great rescue in your area.

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    Default Re: what's a good companion dog for a german shepherd?

    I can look up the rescue groups in my area since I've worked with two of them. As far as social problem-- yeah, a dog gets dropped off in a strange place and depending on the space of the shelter, stays for months, and they don't have social problems? My friend is going to be gone A LOT, so I'm not necessarily sure that it would be good to get a dog from a shelter unless it was one of those super happy dogs which nothing phases.

    I think the special breed foster homes will probably help.
    I'll tell him to look on petfinder.

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    Default Re: what's a good companion dog for a german shepherd?

    Quote Originally Posted by fancygirl View Post
    As far as social problem-- yeah, a dog gets dropped off in a strange place and depending on the space of the shelter, stays for months, and they don't have social problems?
    Dogs are at the shelter for all kinds of reasons and all kinds of length of time. Dont assume they were surrendered because they have problems. I've seen pure breeds surrendered to shelters for the stupidest reasons..."he sheds" "he got too big" "I want the newest IN breed".....most of the dogs there are there because their owners had social issues..not the dog. And many of them stay extremely well adjusted despite the shake up in their lives.It's at least worth it to go and see what kind of dogs they have and potentially save a life rather then support backyard breeders who are just contributing to the overpopulation.





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    Default Re: what's a good companion dog for a german shepherd?

    the answer to the shelter dogs problem is this:

    some shelter dogs are excellent. it should definately be an option. however, breed research should always be done. that way, even with a mixed breed (if you know at least 2 or 3 of the breeds involved) you have some idea of a possible temperment. you should never adopt a dog simply because you feel bad for it. that only leads to regret in the future and a bad relationship for both you and the animal. DO be careful about breeders. stay away from any breeder who breeds more than 2 types of dog or has more than 2 litters of puppies at a time. also be aware of inbreeding. some breeds inbreed their dogs to keep the bloodline "pure" which can lead to all sorts of genetic defects. basicaly beware of anyone who sees breeding dogs as a way to turn a great profit. good breeding is barely profitable. there are newsgroups online with reviews about certain breeders and etc if you look for them. also, if your friend decides on a certain breed that they want, tell them to see if there's a rescue club for that breed in the area. many people start specific breed rescues for purebred dogs who need homes. my friend adopted 2 retired greyhounds (still very young) who are the sweetest most loving dogs i've ever known.

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    Default Re: what's a good companion dog for a german shepherd?

    and, mostly, don't be so arrogant as to assume that a dog you raise yourself will be free of "social problems".

    Dogs, like people, are always a mix of good and bad (although with most dogs, it's mostly good).

    You have much better insight into what you'd be getting in an adult dog at the shelter than that cute little puppy that'll grow up in an unpredictable manner as good intentions fall before the demands of life.
    "He will come in one of the pre-chosen forms. During the rectification of the Vuldrini, the traveler came as a large and moving Torg! Then, during the third reconciliation of the last of the McKetrick supplicants, they chose a new form for him: that of a giant Slor! Many Shuvs and Zuuls knew what it was to be roasted in the depths of the Slor that day, I can tell you!"

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    Default Re: what's a good companion dog for a german shepherd?

    it always depends on the dog's personality, not size or breed.

    i used to work in a vet's office as vet assitant...we had boarding a huge german shepard and his little buddy a pug. they shared the same run & you'd think the shepard gave birth to the little one, if they were out of each other's sight he'd freak out...we even had to bath them in the same tub.

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    Default Re: what's a good companion dog for a german shepherd?

    CamronFL is right, people drop off dogs for all kinds of reasons. (sorry i'm reading the other posts now, lol). again..at the vet office, we had boarding a beautiful 18mo old english bulldog..very well bred (no health problems, her size and stance was great so more than likely no leg problems), great personailty & loved the other dogs. her owner just never came back for her.

    I adopted my dog (shepard mix, most people think shes an australian shepard witha tail, lol) from a local shelter, she was abandoned as a puppy because she had mange, she lived for 18 months in a cage & coiuldnt get adopted. i fell in love with her and she is wonderful. loves my cats, great with kids & plays with other dogs. just a warning...shelter dogs may be a little more co-dependant than normal dogs though, she never leaves my side and shakes when she sees me leave.

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    Default Re: what's a good companion dog for a german shepherd?

    ^^^I know what everyone is saying about shelter dogs, and also remember IT'S NOT WHAT I'M LOOKING FOR-- MY FRIEND IS THE ONE LOOKING. I know he loves adopting strays, but I also know he doesn't have a lot of time, this dog is for his german shepherd, and he's going to be travelling a lot pretty soon.

    this is why I could see some potential issues with a shelter dog. It would be unfair to pick it up, and then spend only a little time with it before leaving....

    but I've already made the suggestion so we'll see.

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    Default Re: what's a good companion dog for a german shepherd?

    My question then is if he doesnt have enough time to spend with one dog....why is he getting another? Does he think that having a "buddy" will make up for the lack of attenion he is able to pay? How long will he be going out of town all the time? Is this a short term or long term thing and when he is home permanently will he be keeping the other dog or is it a "keep him company while I'm gone, then I'll find you another home" kind of thing(which I've seen before)

    If he isnt going to be able to pay enough attention for a long time(as opposed to a short term problem)..maybe he'd be better off finding a new hom for the one he has. I dont want to sound mean...but getting a "buddy" is not really a valid replacement for his masters attention.

    And the point people are trying to make is that NO dog will be a gurantee of perfect social graces....no matter what the breed is known for. Therefore....you might be better off going to a shelter where they KNOW the dogs, your friend can get an older dog(who's personality is already set and is housebroken since he prob wont have time to train a puppy) and he can bring his GSD in to see how they interact before adopting.

    Hopefully that makes more sense.
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    Default Re: what's a good companion dog for a german shepherd?

    ^ Really, a shelter/rescue group that temperment tests will have well behaved dogs and will be able to tell you which dogs would best suit his needs (low key, playful, not needy). Always ask what tt they use and ask to see it... it's controversial, but I think from an adopters POV the Sue Sternberg tt is best (ie, it eliminates dogs with even normal doggie issues).



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