Not all dogs make great family pets. There are many things that need to be taken into account to consider a certain breed as a good family dog.
A good family dog should have a good demeanour, personality, willingness to please loved ones, and get along with their owners and members of their human family, including children, seniors, and other pets. In this article, we are going to focus on the German Shepherd.
Determining whether or not a German Shepherd makes a good family dog is subjective as it depends specifically on each family’s lifestyle.
Generally speaking, German Shepherds are considered excellent family dogs not only because of their personality but also because of their abilities.
Is a German Shepherd Really a Good Family Dog?
This breed is characterized by being devoted to its family. It is a hardworking dog that can perform well in various tasks and activities.
Many people use them as herding dogs, police dogs, etc. Keep in mind that it is one of the most intelligent canines in the entire world.
Some aspects that make a German Shepherd a good family dog are:
German Shepherd Personality and Temperament
German Shepherds are very intelligent dogs that will learn very quickly anything you try to teach them. They are very loyal and form strong bonds with their owners and members of their human family, especially children.
Keep in mind that you should socialise these dogs before allowing them to interact with children. Although this breed is not violent or aggressive, they can hit kids while running and playing, especially due to their large size.
It is important that you make your children understand the basic rules from the beginning so that they behave well with the canine.
The German Shepherds are also characterized by being protective. They will protect each member of your family from any danger. That makes them excellent family dogs as they show their loyalty to their loved ones.
These dogs love to please their owners and also have the ability to understand their moods and how to act according to the situation.
German Shepherds Are Good with Children and Babies
German Shepherds are playful animals that love to spend time with kids. They will form strong bonds with them and see them as their pack brothers. They won’t mind being hugged, kissed, or caressed by children.
You must make sure to provide socialisation training when they are puppies so that the coexistence between them and your children is the best.
While socialisation will help your German Shepherd get along with your kids, leaving them unattended is still a risk. That is because this breed of dog is characterized by being very energetic and active and could push or hit the child (unintentionally) while it runs, jumps, or plays.
Socialising German Shepherds is a vital step but educating your children to behave around these dogs is also important.
A German Shepherd also likes babies. However, you need to teach it how to deal with them properly. It is never advisable to leave a German Shepherd, and a baby alone as this breed of dog is not aware of its own size and strength.
If they play, run or make sudden movements near a baby, then it could be dangerous. No matter how well trained your German Shepherd is, these incidents could still occur.
German Shepherds Are Good with Other Pets
Another reason German Shepherds make good family dogs is that they can get along with other household pets.
They are very friendly canines that if they are socialised at an early age, they will be able to get along with other pets, including dogs, and even treat them as pack brothers.
It’s normal for your new German Shepherd to be wary of another pet for the first few days. But these dogs are so intelligent that they will adapt quickly and learn to get along when you least expect it.
As with children, it is essential to provide your German Shepherd with socialisation training so that its interaction with another pet is the most appropriate.
Their Exercise Needs Are Perfect for Active Families
German Shepherds are ideal for families with active lifestyles. These dogs need a lot of daily exercise, which is ideal for energetic people.
If they don’t get enough daily exercise, they can develop inappropriate behaviours like loud barking, digging, chewing on things, etc.
For that reason, a German Shepherd should not be purchased by people who spend all day working and do not have time to exercise with their pet. This breed not only needs to exercise but also to be mentally stimulated through games, agility training, etc.
German Shepherds Are Easy to Train
Fortunately, German Shepherds are easy to train for any family. According to the AKC, they are the second most intelligent dog breed.
They are canines that learn any skill and command quickly and one of the reasons for that, apart from their intelligence, is that they love to please their owners.
German Shepherds Are Good Guard Dogs
German Shepherds are extraordinary guard dogs as they possess all the traits and abilities for it. They will guard and protect their territory from any intruder.
In the same way, they will protect their owners and members of their human family when they notice any threat or unusual activity.
Although German Shepherds are born with the protective instinct, they still need to be trained to be the best guard dogs.
The characteristics that make a German Shepherd an excellent guard dog are:
- Intelligence: Intelligence is necessary to easily learn basic commands and develop the ability to think on their own to solve problems.
- Bravery: Any guard dog must be brave to face any threatening situation, and the German Shepherd meets this expectation.
- Protective Instinct: Obviously, German Shepherds have a protective instinct that makes them defend not only their loved ones but also their territory.
- Devotion: Dogs of this type are very devoted and loyal to the people they will protect, that is, the members of their family.