Does anyone have a female and male German Shepherd who work as guard dogs? How well d

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Does anyone have a female and male German Shepherd who work as guard dogs? How well d

This is a discussion on Does anyone have a female and male German Shepherd who work as guard dogs? How well d within the Working Dogs forums, part of the Dog Shows and Performance category; I plan on getting two German shepherds. They will both be for protection, but I want a male for strength and reliability and the female ...

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Old 08-24-2018, 06:44 AM
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Does anyone have a female and male German Shepherd who work as guard dogs? How well d

I plan on getting two German shepherds. They will both be for protection, but I want a male for strength and reliability and the female mostly for a backup or more up close protection. Would it be a good idea to get them as siblings? I’m aware that they will need to be professionally trained and I plan on that as well. Will a male and female work well together and will they recognize me as their master, do their job and also be loyal loving companions at the same time? Instead of a female to accompany the male, would another breed (female) be better for what I am looking for? I want to have a very strong team that will all protect each other. I am set on a male German Shepherd but I am mostly exploring my options for a female.
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Old 08-24-2018, 08:59 AM
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You should speak with a professional protection trainer. Also should look into litter mate syndrome. These type of cases would best benefit from having a close relationship with a protection mentor.
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Old 08-24-2018, 09:55 AM
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I worry when I hear someone wants to train a dog for protection. I hear too many stories of the dogs being abused trying to make them mean. And sometimes it is completely against their nature and it's traumatizing for the dog. If that's what you want you should look into getting an adult that you already know has the traits you want.

German Shepherds are naturally protective of their territory and will alert to anyone coming onto their territory. I grew up with German Shepherds (I have one now) and they were all naturally loving and protective of the family and they all would be very alert for someone coming around that didn't belong. No training needed. They are loud. They look threatening. And because of that they get a bad rep.

One of our Shepherds that was a female was very dominant and she didn't need any training at all to be very protective of us, but because of that trait we couldn't trust her to be loose around other people. She had to be muzzled to go to a vet and if they needed to look at teeth or something we had to be the ones to do that. She was great with us, and super smart, and we loved her greatly, but it was a concern that she could get loose and maybe bite someone. She would certainly scare them. Her life wasn't the best it could be because she had to be confined more than she otherwise would have been. I'd much rather have a dog that can be around other people without worry, but also alert me to danger.
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Old 08-24-2018, 04:07 PM
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I'd second the look into trainers first, they can help you with dog selection as well as get you set up with the right equipment and group etc...
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Old 08-24-2018, 04:10 PM
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What country are you living in?

It's worth reading up on the legalities of protection training, we have states here that prohibit it entirely and some that just hold the handler liable for any damage including to trespassers as the dog is considered a weapon/boobytrap if trained.
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Old 08-24-2018, 05:13 PM
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If you get the dogs as puppies (from a breeder or otherwise) and want them to be trained as protection dogs, they have to be of a very solid temperament and not be prone to fears and anxieties like many dogs are.

From what I have read here on this forum and other places, many dogs "wash out" after the owners have spent thousands of dollars on these dogs who just are not fit to be protection dogs.

Since you did not say why you are seeking protection dogs, I am not sure what function you are wanting them for, ie. home protection, business guarding, etc. Perhaps you can elaborate and others who have protection dogs here can offer you more guidance or suggestions.

And if you search "protection dogs" in this forum you will see many threads that discuss the huge disappointment of people who bought a dog to be a protection dog for enormous amounts of money from a "reputable" breeder only to have it wash out because of temperament issues and not be able to "use" the dog as they intended.
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Old 08-24-2018, 05:20 PM
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You may want to read the entire thread on this forum by @marcie started on 5-16-18.

Horrible story about her experience with purchasing a protection dog and the replies she got.

Here is her first post:

Bought a "Trained" Doberman Pinscher

I spent 15k on a protection trained Doberman Pinscher.

Well...he knows all his commands. But, he is scared out of his mind. When I tell him to do something he shakes and cowers. His ears and tail are cut off, so it's hard to tell how he is feeling, but the shaking gives it away. I was given a choke chain and prong collar to use with him. The first time I got the prong collar out he literally urinated all over himself, cowering under the kitchen table. I had to literally hide it out of sight before he would come out. So...I got out the choke chain. Same thing, only this time he defecated and screamed, running head first into a cabinet and sliding around in his own excrement.

He was sold to me as a "Family Protection Dog" and I can't let him around my children! He has already bit me seven different times out of fear! I've had to get my arm stitched up. He is living in the garage right now. He switches between either scared and cowering or aggressive and menacing.

This dog is so damaged and he surely can't protect me! I feel like I need to protect him! Also, I asked for an intact male and he has ONE testicle.

What do I do? The "trainer" said there are no refunds and I certainly don't want to send him back to him.
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Old 08-24-2018, 05:32 PM
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Excellent post about PPD's --Personal Protection Dogs

I hope it is ok that I copy paste this excellent post by another forum member. It was just too informative to not post here in my opinion!!

Anyone who is even thinking of acquiring a PPD should read this!

Written by @Bentwings on 5-27-2018

I came in late to this thread and only waded through parts of made me sick to just read what I did.

I’ve worked with PPDs, police dogs and protection dog sports for a long time. In the early days of my personal training we talked about choosing dogs for the work. It was said that of the 5% of a given breed that shows potential for protection work of any kind only 5% of those were capable of true Personal protection work. The wash out rate obviously is extremely high. Even trainers with selective breeding programs have very high washout rates. Many just sell these dogs as pets often with neuter and or non breed clauses, and often at bargain prices.

Faults range from health,lack of drive, shyness, fearfulness, poor structure, and general reactivity as well as others. As I continued training and working with a range of dogs from pups to top of the line trained dogs I began to see these things much more clearly. Indeed I was questioned by the trainer on what I saw and critiqued on my comments. Eventually I got to and participate on dog candidate selection. This was by another trainer who trained mostly police working dogs. I got to see him select a fresh shipment of European dogs. He said they rarely sent high quality dogs, mostly their “junk dogs” to “us stupid Americans” as he noted. The test was in a large pole building with a dirt floor. These dogs had had previously two weeks of relaxing kennel and socialization to get used to him. One by one the we’re brought into the barn. He first threw a tennis ball down to the far end then released the dog. If the dog ran fast and picked it up and either ran around or brought it back, it passed the first test. The second test he simply tossed a puppy training sleeve out. With no command or encouragement the dog was released. If the dog ran quickly to it and pranced around sort of “ showing off” with it, he said the dog would get further training and was a temporary “keeper”. Dogs that failed either test were sent back or sold for his cost. Of the six he demoed to us he kept one. Then he told, not asked, me to bring in my dog. As I recall he had just passed his SCH II trial. So I did. He had me step out and watch through the office window. My dog did the ball quickly and ran around shaking the sleeve proudly then the trainer grabbed it and pulled hard with very strong threatening noises. My dog vigorously opposed with a deep grip until the trainer released it. He said my dog had solid drives and was in control of himself. He needed much more difficult and demanding work but carefully done to prevent excessive fight as he became more skillful. It turned out exactly as he said. My friend’s dog barely passed the initial test and the trainer said that he would probably wash out later on. He suggested we train him as an object/area search dog and as a dog to demo and to take on public K 9 awareness programs. He turned out to be a wonderful family dog with just enough “ guard” abilitity to scare off intruders. We got to spend a whole week of 10-12 hours days working dogs with this guy and learned a lot. It’s hard to describe the intensity of the dog training and the personal training he gave us.
We considered money well spent.

When he completed a dog’s training he required a week of personal training of the handler with the dog thus creating the foundation of a team.


What surprises me here is that the OP seems to have no introduction as to her dog’s training or capability. Then to read about the total lack of working ability of the dog. I’d be highly suspicious of this trainer. If I was to go back in time to my first week of real hard dog training (I’d be a rank beginner trainer) and asked to evaluate this dog based on his first week of training too, I say take this dog home and treat him nicely. Give him a comfy bed, let him on the couch and bed and give him a good life. Then get another dog for the work. Compared to what my trainer would have said ,this is very gentle.

It sounds like this dog was badly mistreated, maybe forced to enter into protection training that he was not genetically equipped to do, then had a big ticket price tag hung on him. I really feel sorry for the OP as well as the dog. I can even begin to imagine the disappointment.

Most assuredly I’d keep this dog away from the kids. I’m going to repeat this because I don’t want to read about an accident.

Keep this dog away from the kids.

There are already plenty of recommendations posted so I’ll not get into that.

PPDs are not for everyone just as guns and weapons are not for everyone.

For the OP. This problem asside. Please, please if you really want a PPD go to several
Trainers and talk to them. Keep notes. Ask if they will help and train you to handle the dog. Find out all you can. Check with your local law enforcement about PPD. And above all check with your insurance agent/company. Then I’d suggest you attend a Concealed and Carry gun permit class. Not that you want to carry a firearm but so you will learn about the laws concerning your personal and property protection.

I know this is very long winded but I hear PPD things frequently and most people don’t really understand what goes into this.

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Old 08-30-2018, 12:14 PM
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I've had both males and females gsd's throughout my life. I'm no professional dog trainer just had them as pets.
I've found that gsd's are awesome dogs as companion guard and service dogs.
They're naturally protective of their home and people.
So minimal trainings really needed I have found.
I've found its easier to handle one dog at a time though instead of a pair.
As far as which one is more protective than the other, I've found females to be more protective than males. They will protect their dens to the end. Both are just as capable as the other though.
I personally prefer females than males but I've had both genders not at the same time though.
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