It is never good to say that a dog is not a good pet since that is subjective. Perhaps the breed of dog you adopted or bought does not suit your lifestyle or needs, but it is perfect for other types of families. One of the most popular breeds out there is the German Shepherd.
Actually, German Shepherds make good pets for most families. They are very loyal, affectionate, friendly, brave, and protective animals.
They are characterized by being intelligent and quickly learning any command or skill. They can get along with children and other pets, making them good family dogs.
Reasons Why German Shepherds Are Not Good Pets
Despite all the positive characteristics of this breed, it also has certain aspects that could make them not so suitable for all families.
German Shepherd Size
German Shepherds are large dogs that can be a problem for people who live in small homes. The males of this breed measure between 60 cm and 65 cm and weigh between 30 kg and 40 kg.
On the other hand, a female German Shepherd has a height that varies between 55 cm and 60 cm and weighs between 22 kg and 32 kg.
Generally, the large size of a dog is a problem for people who live in small houses or apartments since there is not much space.
Our German Shepherd will not be able to move freely, and this is a problem since it will retain energy that it will try to release through inappropriate behaviour. Remember that these dogs are very active and need daily exercise.
Also, these dogs’ large size and strength can be a problem for small children and babies. These dogs are very energetic and will want to run or jump from time to time. While moving, they could accidentally hit nearby children.
German Shepherd High Exercise Needs
German Shepherds are characterized by being energetic and active. They love to get plenty of daily exercise and receive mental stimulation to stay fit and happy.
This breed needs approximately two hours of daily exercise; otherwise, they will release their pent-up energy through destructive behaviours such as excessive barking, running wild, digging in the garden, chewing on furniture, etc.
In the previous point, we have discussed the fact that these dogs are not ideal for families living in apartments or small houses, especially those that do not have a backyard. In these locations, you may not be able to provide your German Shepherd with exercise every day, which could become a problem.
German Shepherds are not ideal dogs for people with less active lifestyles. That does not mean that these dogs do not make good pets, as there are many families who have the time to provide them with a daily exercise routine.
This should not be a problem for people who usually work long hours a day. There are many dog sitters out there who can provide everything a German Shepherd needs while its owner is away.
German Shepherd Health Problems
While this breed of dog is healthy, they are still prone to certain diseases and health problems that can be costly to their owners.
German Shepherds need to be taken to the vet about two times a year to rule out any health issues. Keep in mind that even if you take it to the vet, there is no guarantee that your pet will not suffer from a genetic disease.
That’s why it’s important that you get your German Shepherds from a responsible breeder and make sure it has a good health history.
One of the most common diseases that these canines can suffer from is hip dysplasia. It is the abnormal formation of the hip socket that will cause your German Shepherd to feel pain and have difficulty walking or getting up after resting for a long time. You must be prepared to deal with these issues if your pet develops this disease.
Some other health problems that a German Shepherd can suffer from are:
- Elbow Dysplasia
- Degenerative Myelopathy
- Gastric Dilatation-Volvulus
German Shepherd Shedding
If you’re not prepared to deal with German Shepherd hair all over your home or willing to maintain its coat on a regular basis, then this breed is not for you.
German Shepherds have a double-layered coat. These canines are constantly shed throughout the year.
They will shed their undercoat during seasonal changes, especially in spring and fall. If you plan to have a German Shepherd as a pet, be prepared to find fur all over the house.
You will need to brush its fur daily to reduce shedding. Also, feeding it high-quality, healthy food will keep its coat in good condition, and it will tend to shed less.
German Shepherd Separation Anxiety
Like most dog breeds, German Shepherds can suffer from separation anxiety when left home alone for too long. This can be a problem for people who spend a large part of the day working away from home.
These canines need to be close to their family for much of the day and will not feel good if you leave them alone for many hours.
They may experience a lot of stress and anxiety and even develop destructive behaviours such as barking, chewing, digging, howling loudly, trying to escape, or relieving themselves anywhere.
German Shepherd Dominant Personality
On many occasions, German Shepherds do not like to recognize their owner as alpha. We have to remember that this breed has a dominant personality which means that it will want to set the rules in the house and be the leader of the pack.
This is a big challenge, especially for first-time owners. People inexperienced with pets may have trouble dealing with this personality type. If you cannot make your German Shepherd understand that you are the one in charge, then it is very likely that it will not obey you.
German Shepherd Aggressive Behaviour
German Shepherds are not naturally aggressive dogs, but they can develop this type of unwanted behaviour if they do not receive proper socialisation training.
They were originally bred as guard dogs to protect territories and families. That caused them to develop a strong protective instinct that can trigger aggressive behaviour without the necessary education.