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German Shepherd Dog

Overall satisfaction


Acquired: Breeder (professional)

Gender: Male

Training: I haven't learned care / training techniques, Attended conferences / shows, Books, I’ve taught bird care / training techniques

Quick to learn and train


Emotionally stable


Family oriented


Child safety


Safe with small pets


Doesn’t bark a lot




Easy to groom


Great watch dog


Great guard dog



By Katy

Central IL, Illinois, United States

Posted May 13, 2010

A very loyal, intelligent dog. Not for a first time dog owner usually. They love younger children if they are raised with them. The GSD needs to be socialized and trained from a very young age. These dogs are large, muscular, strong, quick dogs and very protective of their families and pack members. If you want to know where your GSD is look at your feet. They do shed moderately and will blow their coats twice a year. They do need a job to do and plenty of exercise or they will become destuctive out of boredom. They do great at agility, protection work and make excellent farm dogs.

2 members found this helpful

Posting as


Hi Katy. I see you mentioned that Sebastian is a seizure alert dog. I've always found that so intriguing. Did he need to be trained at all for this, or did it just come naturally? What does he do when he senses something about to happen?

Reply Posted December 09, 2010 at 10:16 PM

Katy to earthling

Hi Brett,
Sebastian's seizure alerting was natural, starting at 3.5 months. In the beginning he would come and get me, nudge me and whine and go back to Kayla, then lay down by her prior to a seizure. Now that he is 1 year, he will alert by licking her face, getting her to lie down on her side and bark for help without leaving her.
We were very lucky in how he bonded with her early on. We also work with a professional trainer for obedience and social skills, but she does much of his training herself. It's pretty amazing how intellegent GSD's are, they love to work for their masters.

Reply Posted December 10, 2010 at 12:23 AM

earthling to

Incredible. What would you say his accuracy is? Have there been times he's sensed a potential seizure, and let everyone know, but there was no seizure? I'm just trying to understand what he is sensing. Have you ever heard what they are sensing - an odor of some sort which precedes a seizure, or some facial expression or posture in the human?

Reply Posted December 10, 2010 at 03:00 PM

Katy to

Yes it is incredible, I'm not exactly sure how he knows. But it has something to do with the bond she has with him. None of his training has been for the alerting. From what we've been told it's a change in body chemistry that he recognizes. At this point his accuracy has been a perfect 100%. He recognizes the onset of a migraine for her also, which usually precedes her seizure activity. He sleeps on the floor at her bedside, unless something is going on, then he will get in bed with her, so we watch both of them closely and he is always right. It is too amazing to question, we couldn't have special ordered him to be a better match for her. It was one of those things that was meant to be, God with the help of Trinity Ranch Kennels made it all possible in our eyes.
His alerts are different for different things, if she is in another room and tells him to come get me he does. He will go get the other dogs for her also. She will say, "go get Sophie, Emmy or Max" and he will herd the correct dog. She has taught him how to put groceries away, and would love to teach him to unload the dishwasher ... nothing surprises me much any more, it just may happen.

Reply Posted December 10, 2010 at 06:04 PM

Firetiger to

They have an innate ability to sense and read their owners every emotion and how they are feeling. Its amazing. I agree that this is involved with a change in body chemistry, just like the way dogs sense most things in humans. Everything about our biology is minute changes in chemistry. The cadaver dogs in my group can scent out human placenta remains in a little cup of dirt that the placenta has composted in for 2 years.
While it might sound odd to many that Sebastian has not been trained to siezure alert and does it naturally, I completely understand it. In the search and rescue training I do, I found out that the Trinity dogs come hardwired with a fantastic nose and instinctual skills to use it. Without teaching him anything specific about air scenting or tracking, he pinpoints everyone easily, and the only thing we have to 'teach' is the alerting methods.
Now putting groceries away - thats amazing! It takes a brilliant dog for that! And a loyal one too. I would have never even thought of that. It sounds like a great thing to make a video of.

Reply Posted January 06, 2011 at 02:02 PM