German Shepherd & Malinois dogs are the choice for the US Military. However, are they the right choice for you? I believe most people should pause and truly think about the needs of the dog before deciding on a specific breed.
Reactionary & Emotional Decisions
With the recent news regarding the K-9 tasked with hunting down an ISIS despot, there has been an increase in requests for K-9’s such as the Malinois. As an owner of a German Shepherd imported from the Czech Republic, I feel the need to speak up.
Although many are drawn to these noble creatures, they are more than just the “story”. Yes, they are loyal. They have unbelievable drive. They have incredible intelligence. However, not everyone should actually adopt or purchase such an animal.
Why Not a Working Dog?
These highly specialized K-9’s did not just wake up “specialized”. Both breeds are very high drive, need to work, need to exercise and need discipline, not just a little, but quite a lot.
My heartfelt advice stands. If you cannot spend a majority of time with your “specialized breed”, such as a Malinois or German Shepherd, DO NOT buy one. Even if you buy one trained you may have some big issues. If you cannot continue to train the dog, make it part of your daily routine and understand that the dog must be engaged mentally, you may want to consider an alternative breed.
Darko and I train several times a day. We begin early. Exercise is key for his health, both physically and mentally. Working dogs need to have a job. Darko trains hard as he wants to please me. We also take walks throughout the day. We practice hand commands everyday. Having a working dog breed is considerable work. The commitment is big. We are blessed that I am able to work remotely. Our lifestyle allows us to adjust and accommodate the needs of our family member- Darko.
The last thing anyone wants to see is an incredible animal become neglected, not by choice, but due to owner’s lifestyle, and end up in a rescue.
Seek Out Expert Advice
Seek out expert advice before adopting or buying a working dog. Call, or email, Ruidoso Malinois, a specialized kennel. If you want to help these amazing animals, donate to the United States War Dogs Association. www.uswardogs.org. The Association supports canine veterans. Congress has yet to appropriate dollars to their post service care. Help them live the remainder of their lives with honor as they served our country.
What do you think? Should people opt for Malinois or German Shepherds as “average pets”? Do you have either? Share your story….. Every dog has a story…