My daughter always loves working with our German Shepherd Dogs. She has helped raise these puppies since she was 2 years old and absolutely loves them. I think that’s why our Shepherds do so well when they go to their forever homes because of Ali. She picks them up and loves each and every one of them, taking them for walks outside, and really enjoys them. Thanks to Ali for all of her hard work!
This is one of 3 male puppies of Straze’s last litter…the one I kept because this was Straze’s last pregnancy….meet Congo, a 10 week old German Shepherd puppy with a stock of champions and boy does he display it! He is an awesome dog, shows no fear, very playful, intelligent, excellent stance and ears, an incredible black and tan GSD with sable fur. He’s incredible and our whole family loves him to death!
Potty training your new German Shepherd puppy takes diligence and, it doesn’t happen overnight. You will become discouraged, but believe me, with time, patience, and persistence, your puppy will be house broken within no time.
I start working with my new puppies at about 4 weeks old to potty train, but quite possibly you won’t get your puppy until they are closer to 6-8 weeks old. That’s O.K. Whatever age you acquire your new pup, the work to start house breaking him (or her) begins immediately. A lot of people buy puppy pads which, in my opinion, are a big waste of money. They do work for some people, however, they are quite expensive and you are encouraging them to pee in the house instead of going outside, you are just teaching them to go indoors on a pad.
Your puppy will have accidents inside, but without accidents there is no room for teaching. Diligence is key, and being in tune with your puppy is essential. Here is what to do when your puppy does his business in your nice, clean home:
- First, you want to scold your puppy in a firm, but not mean voice.
- Pick up your puppy and show him the mess he has made, tell him ‘No potty inside…potty outside’ and immediately take the puppy outside.
- Once outside, keep repeating the dog’s name and say ‘Congo potty outside’ with the inflection on the word outside.
- Keep repeating this process. Your puppy will eventually start going to the door to let you know he wants out, but, he’s a puppy and he won’t wait long because he hasn’t learned to control his bladder, so if you’re not constantly watching your puppy, you won’t get his cues and miss out on this opportunity.
After a few weeks of repeating this process, your puppy will be house broken in no time. He will learn to hold his bladder and your life will go back to normal and you can trust him when you’re not home.
Remember, this is a process, your dog is not magic and it can be discouraging. Keep your cool and be persistent so that your household remains healthy and happy.
I get a lot of questions about this…what’s the difference in a ‘slant’ back German Shepherd Dog and a ’round’ or ‘roach’ back German Shepherd Dog and what do you prefer?
Well first let me say that whatever dog you choose to love, you need to have a connection with that dog and give it the best loving home that you can. The dog is a part of your family, right? So if you purchase your dog from a breeder with AKC standards, or you adopt a dog, or find a stray, it really doesn’t matter as long as you love the dog. With that being said, we are focusing on the German Shepherd breed of dog and there are different color varieties, as well as different ‘looks’ of the breed.
One fairly noticeable difference is the slant of a German Shepherd Dog’s back. The ‘ideal’ Shepherd, the way they were originally bred in Germany, is the slant back German Shepherd. If you were to show your German Shepherd, this ‘slant’ would definitely need to be seen in your dog. Again, this is the ‘ideal’, original German Shepherd Dog’s features and we always want to stick to this ideal when breeding dogs.
However, once the German Shepherd’s became more ‘Americanized’, the dogs were being bred to a different standard and started producing dogs with a round, or roach back. I can tell you that I have both styles of dogs, and although I love each dog the same, I actually prefer the slant back German Shepherd as far as the ‘look’. In fact, when I first got my ‘roach’ back German Shepherd (I rescued her from an older woman who simply couldn’t take care of her), I thought something was wrong with her. I had never seen this round type of back before because all of our other Shepherds are the standard slant back. But as I researched, I found that this is normal and actually is preferred by some German Shepherd Dog lovers. I have actually had requests for a round or roach back style of dog.
I think a good German Shepherd breeder can distinguish between the two styles of dog and by the way, it does not affect any other qualities of the breed, just the ‘looks’ of the dog. As a breeder, I can look at a German Shepherd and know if it is a direct import from Germany, if it is a Czech Border Patrol dog, or if the dog has a long line of American breeding. This is all just preference if you are looking for a family pet.
So, the takeaway here is that no matter what your preference, the slant or roach back German Shepherd Dog, the breed is still one of the most sought after, loving, intelligent, loyal dogs available. That’s why I Love German Shepherds!
After many years of successfully breeding the German Shepherd Dog, I can honestly tell you that each and every time your Bitch gives birth it feels like a brand new experience. You will get nervous, anxious, and try to remember how things went with your last litter, and the anticipation is exciting and nerve racking. Just as with human births, there are definitely signs and signals that your dog is ready to drop a brand new puppy.
Although the anticipation is great and you may feel nervous, try to channel your energy to create an environment for your dog that is soothing and comforting. Remember, she is nervously anxious, too. She will need you tremendously at this time and will look to you for comfort and security…more than any other time in her life. You will notice a big change in her around birthing time because she will linger around you more than usual. Pet her and give her comfort as this helps her know everything will be O.K. Her eyes will become dilated and she will begin to noticeably pant faster than normal.
When your dog is very close to giving birth, she will begin to dig. It is ideal to have her in a contained area such as a child’s plastic swimming pool
or a whelping box to give her security and to contain the puppies. I have always used a plastic pool for whelping and line it with newspapers that I get in bundles from my local newspaper office. They have bundles of old or imperfect papers that you can purchase for $1 a bundle. This makes it easier for any messes to be cleaned up and allows your Bitch to be able to dig a place to have her puppies. This is normal for her and she needs something to dig up and prepare. If she were outside (which I don’t recommend) she will dig a hole in the dirt to drop her puppies in for security. Newspapers have always worked the best for me since I have all of my puppies indoors in a controlled environment.
Another sign that your dog is ready to give birth is her inability to get comfortable. She will pace, often in circles, in her contained area and rarely finds comfort in laying down. She will often look behind her repeatedly to see if a puppy has been dropped. This is a very good sign that birth could happen any second.
Dogs have always given birth naturally, outside, because they are in fact animals. But a good breeder wants to make sure that your female Bitch and her puppies are optimally cared for. You can often prevent a puppies death or other bad things from happening by being attentive and observing the birth of these precious puppies.
If you have any other questions regarding birthing of your GSD, please feel free to leave a comment and I’ll answer your questions as soon as possible. Good luck with your new litter!
As a breeder, I can tell you that dogs are like humans, no two are the same. I have read many, many websites online that give misinformation regarding breeding German Shepherd Dogs. I have been breeding the GSD for nearly 15 years and each and every time a new litter arrives I learn something new.
As a large breed dog, the German Shepherd Dog’s average litter size is approximately 7 puppies. This can vary widely depending on the age and health of the Bitch, but the average litter size is 7 puppies. The smallest litter I’ve had is 3, the largest 11. My very first litter was 11 puppies large and I believe that was because the Dam was in superior health, running miles and miles each day and swimming laps in our lake. The dog’s fitness level is key in producing a larger, healthier litter.
This is one common frequently asked question about the breed. For more Frequently Asked Questions, click on FAQ at the top of the page in the menu.