German Shepherds are known for their obedience, comprehension and good-natured temperament. Representatives of the breed perfectly get along with people, even very young. German Shepherd and children can find a common language if their acquaintance and interaction are subject to specific rules.
Features of the Breed
The German Shepherd Dog was bred from shepherd dogs. Its ancestors have been protecting and guarding flocks of sheep for centuries. The dogs made sure the animals didn’t run away from the group, didn’t spare themselves to ward off predators and kept them safe from other dangers. They are clearly aware of their role in the pack and are able to control their strength. Therefore, the German Shepherd can be a reliable and safe babysitter for the child.
Character traits common to the breed:
- communication skills;
- high ability to training and comprehension;
- a stable psyche.
Males are more stubborn than females and more challenging to train. The methods are the same, but the male’s owner needs to be more persistent in training. Females are calmer and their warmth toward children is reinforced by their maternal instinct.
The German Shepherd treats children in a friendly manner. With proper training, they will not allow themselves to hurt a family member. The dog protects the child and gladly takes part in care and games.
Shepherd and Children Under Three Years Old
Children under three years old require extra attention, and a small puppy under 5-6 months old, too. Taking care of a young German Shepherd and a child at the same time is a time-consuming task. If possible, it is advisable to postpone purchasing a dog until the baby begins to stand firmly on his feet and control his movements.
In order for the adult German Shepherd to get used to the baby, you need to introduce him to the baby and let him sniff the baby’s clothes.
If the children and the dog already live in the same house:
- access to the infant’s room for the pet should be limited;
- cleaning should be done thoroughly and at least once a day to prevent allergies;
- the baby and the Shepherd should not be left alone but must be shown to each other regularly.
If a newborn is expected in a family where an adult GSD lives, it is worth paying increased attention to their acquaintance. While the beloved owner is in the maternity ward, the Shepherd will be bored and show anxiety.
To not scold the pet for the exuberant display of joy when meeting the mother with the infant, it is recommended that someone from the family take the dog out for a walk during the return. After that, it is necessary to change the mother at the newborn and let her go outside to the German. The joyful meeting will take place in a comfortable environment and the Shepherd will come home calmer.
To get the adult dog used to the presence of a new family member, it is useful to let him sniff baby things. It’s best to do this before you leave the maternity home.
An adult GSD can be allowed to examine the baby in the stroller. Playing with the pet can only take place under parental supervision. A puppy can accidentally hurt a baby. An adult German Shepherd will not allow himself to harm the child, even if he is discomforted, but you should not abuse the patience of the dog.
The Friendship Between a Shepherd Dog and a Child 5-14 Years Old
Whether a German Shepherd dog and child will get along at this age depends mainly on the child. The parent should independently assess whether the younger members of the family are ready for such a neighborhood.
The German Shepherd will be happy to actively spend time with the child: running, jumping and playing.
Children should understand that:
- a dog has daily needs and needs to be cared for;
- a pet is not a toy. It has its own desires and plans that must be respected;
- animals can be hurt and must be handled with care;
- a dog’s role in society and danger to others;
A child can and should be entrusted with part of the daily care for the pet. A German Shepherd would enjoy spending time with children in active games. If the child is respectful towards the dog, they can be left alone without fear.
German Shepherd and Teenager
A Shepherd will help to develop a teenager’s responsibility and discipline.
The German Shepherd gets on excellent with a teenager. In the growing-up period, the pet will become a real friend for the maturing personality. The young dog owner will be able to train the GSD, teach him commands and fun tricks. For the pet, the teenager is no longer the ” smallest of the pack”. A puppy raised by a man of 15 will accept him as a master and a senior member of the group.
German Shepherd can easily find understanding with children. Parents may not fear aggression, or conflict situations, if the young people would consider the pet a living being with its own needs and character.