German Shepherds are smart, beautiful dogs. However, properly caring for one is a major undertaking. The following are five steps to take before you bring home a German Shepherd puppy.
Research the Breed
No animal should be brought home on impulse. It is important to make sure that you and your family are a good fit before deciding to make a dog part of your home. With purebreds, you have the ability to research the breed online beforehand.
Two of the most important things to know about German Shepherds is that they are high energy dogs who need lots of physical activity and that they are natural guardians who require careful training and socialization to prevent aggressive behaviors. Research as much as you can about the breed to ensure you are able to properly care for one.
Find a Breeder
Choosing the right AKC German Shepherd Breeders Florida is the first step in bringing home a healthy pet. Although puppy mills are the most egregious example of bad practices, even well-meaning individuals may be weaning pups too early, skipping necessary medical care and making other mistakes that affect the health of the dogs. Ask for references and a tour of the facilities so that you know the animals are well cared for.
Find a Vet
A good vet is essential to your dog’s health. Ask other pet owners about their experiences with local vets. Schedule an appointment to visit the office and speak with staff about their practices. If the clinic is not open 24/7, find the closest emergency vet and put their information in your phone.
Create a Training Schedule
A training schedule helps you stay on track with your pup’s behavior. German Shepherds can be aggressive if they are not properly trained and socialized, so it is extremely important that they receive quality instruction. If you don’t feel like you are able to provide this yourself, research nearby obedience schools and private trainers to help you.
Puppy-Proof Your Home
Make sure all potential toxins, from houseplants to sugar-free gum, are kept out of reach. Use gates to create a safe space for your puppy. Keep the dog away from electrical wires and power cords. Walk through your house and yard looking for all potential hazards. It may help to get down on your hands and knees so that you can see everything from your new pet’s perspective.
German Shepherds are lovely, but they are not for everyone. Make sure you, your family and your house are all prepared before bringing home a new puppy.