Menu

GSD Care and Feeding

Put a tag on the dog’s collar with your address and phone number. 3 out 4
dogs lost will not be reunited with their owner because they have no
identification. Keep your dog on a leash when you are outside if not in a fenced
yard. Do not leave a new dog in a fenced yard when you are not there. It may
panic and jump/dig out of the fence. Padlock outside gates to prevent children
and utility workers from leaving the gate open and the dog escaping.


Arrival at Home: When you get home, let your dog relieve itself outside on a
leash. Praisethe dog when it goes.Walk your dog on a leash through your house,
allowing the dog to explore its new home under your supervision. Keep new dog on
a leash or in a crate if you do not have time to supervise it. If the dog starts
to pee inside, jerk the leash, say NO and take it outside. When it goes, praise
the dog. Always take the dog to the same spot outside to potty.


A crate is the easiest way to house-train your new dog. Dogs will not potty
in their crate, unless it is too large. Place the crate in a location (inside
sliding glass door, family room, kitchen, laundry room). The first time the dog
is placed in the kennel, say Kennel-UP, lead the dog into the crate, throw in a
treat, and close the door. Praise the dog when it goes into the kennel. Then
wait a minute or so, and let the dog out of the crate. Repeat this with longer
crate durations. Do not reinforce whining or crying in the crate by letting the
dog out when it does this. If you cannot stand it, turn on a radio/TV, and go
into another room. Whenever the dog comes out of the crate, it should be taken
outside to potty. Take dogs out first thing in the morning, before you leave,
after meals, after naps, if it acts restless/pacing/sniffing, before bed. Stay
outside with the dog and make sure that it has gone potty!! If you keep the dog
on a long leash or clothesline, then you will know what the dog is doing and can
make a correction if necessary. It is up to you to show the dog the new house
rules!!! If you are home, take the dog out every 2-3 hours. Ask Do you want to
go out?? each time.


Adjustment: All dogs need time to adjust to their new owner and their new
home. Do not take new dogs out to the park, to someone’s home, or to Petsmart
for at least one month. Make sure you have control of the GSD on a leash and
that it respects you as the Alpha Leader of Pack. GSDs are used by the police
and the military because of their size and assertiveness. You have to be in
charge. Pinch-collars are good for training/walking, but should never be left on
the dog.


Enroll your dog in an obedience class: Most give discounts to rescued dogs.
Tulsa Dog Training Club, K-9 Manners & More in BA, Companion Dog Training
Club, Austerlitzshepherds.com. Dogs want to please you. It is your
responsibility to train them and educate them so that they understand your
commands!!!! It is the most important step that you can make to bond with your
dog and to make sure that your dog and you communicate and that your dog is safe
to go out in public!!! An untrained dog may become a nuisance and end up at the
shelter!!


Dog-to-Dog Introduce them on neutral ground if possible. Have each dog on a
leash and allow them sniff each other. Walk the dogs together for a short period
of time and then bring them back to the house together. It may take days (at
least 1 week) for dogs to accept the new dog. You must supervise them during
this time period and keep them leashed if they are together. The biggest mistake
is leaving the new dog with the old dog too soon!! The old dog may be jealous of
the new dog and you have to give the old dog lots of attention. Allow the new
dog to mark outside while the old dog is inside and switch places.


Small dogs (less than 20 lbs.)…. can be mistaken for “prey” and maybe
attacked or killed!! Do not leave a GSD with a small dog without supervision!
Small dogs (terriers/daschounds) get up in the GSD’s face and challenge them and
then the GSD will bite and/or kill them!!


Feeding Dogs:All dogs should be fed separately in a kennel, bathroom or
laundry room!!! Food or bones will trigger a fight in a heartbeat!! Do not let
children approach a dog that is eating (in or out of a crate) because the dog
may bite them! Dogs should be feed twice a day, not one big feeding to avoid
“bloat”. Bloat is a life-threatening condition where the stomach fills with gas
and the stomach can twist causing gane-greene and death. Research has shown that
feeding 2 times a day greater reduces the probability of this occurring. After
feeding the dog should not be allowed to run/or play for 1 hour at least!!


Dog-to-Cat Introductions: The dog must be on a leash or muzzled!! Let the dog
sniff the cat (can be in a carrier for protection), giving them a chance to
check each other out. A new GSD should never be left alone with a cat without
human supervision!!! If the dog shows no aggression, praise the dog. Keep the
dog on a leash when the cat is around for at least a month. If the dog lunges at
the cat, make a harsh correction with the leash and yell NO! The dog must
understand that you are in charge and that chasing the cat or killing it, is not
allowed! Problems arise if you leave the dog and cat together and the cat runs.
Running will trigger the prey drive in the GSD and it will chase the cat!! (and
maybe kill it).


Baby-proof-your house!! Dogs will eat anything! Keep potential items put away
(razors, soap, glasses, medicines, food, chocolate, onions) and off counters.
GSDs can reach anything on your kitchen counter and eat it!! Do not leave things
on coffee tables that can be eaten.


HEAT STROKE!!!! Dogs can die in hot weather. Do not leave your dog in a car
even if the windows are cracked in the summer. Dogs that are outside need a lot
of water, shade, and fly-spray on their ears. If your dog seems overcome with
heat, put the dog in water and lower his temperature- then take to the vet!