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Hi Everyone, in addition to the bad weather that impacted my area over the weekend it was a horrible time for me because I had to make the decision to give up my Dog and I am positively gutted over it but it was the best thing for my Dog and had to be done. I had a 4-year old female German Shepherd who was my world. I live on the 3rd floor of a high rise condo. There is an elevator to go to the ground floor and also back to my floor and I would take my dog out 5 to 6 times a day for potty breaks and walks. My dog was very sensitive and did not take well to all of the people we would encounter on our way to the elevator or in the lobby of the building when we were heading to the front door and it took a dear toll on my Dog to the point where she became horribly stressed and started to shut down and this weekend I had to make the decision to do what was best for her and I took her to a friend who lives on acreage and finds good homes for Dogs. I have known this person for over 30 years and he is the closest thing to a true friend that I have. He told me that I can come visit my Dog as much as I want but I just think it would only increase the pain for myself and the Dog so I am staying away.

Not only was my Dog my best friend she was an Emotional Support Dog and she helped me so many times and already I feel lost without her. I have anti-social tendencies and I hate people and only feel at peace with animals. I know that I will be getting another Dog; not now but in the foreseeable future but I am torn as to what kind of Dog to get. I thought a German Shepherd was a good choice but obviously I was wrong or at least with her I was wrong. I like larger Dogs and a couple of people have suggested that I get a Lab or a Golden Retriever, but I don't to put another Dog through the hell that my GSD went through so I am in a quandary.

I want to ask this group for suggestions as to Dogs that could do well in the hustle and bustle of a Condo lifestyle and being exposed to people on a frequent basis. I want a middle age to older Dog say between 4 to 7 years old and I am willing to put in the time to train the Dog or finish whatever training might have been started. If anyone can make any suggestions or offer any advice it would be most appreciated. Thank you.
 

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I am not saying this to be mean, but you may have caused the stress and anxiety in your dog.

You say you have anti social tendencies and you hate people. Your dog will know this as you shy away from people and encounters with people. Your feelings of dislike and mistrust create biological changes in you when you encounter people. The dog picks up on this. The dog knows your change in breathing, change in heart rate, your body language such as moving to the side, gripping the leash tighter and so forth.

German Shepherds are bred to partner with their handler. They are sensitive to everything about you. If your tense they go on alert and things can escalate from there. Poorly bred dogs can be very nervy.. so you get tense, the dog gets tense, you get MORE tense and the dog gets more tense ...

The dog you need first and foremost needs to be CONFIDENT and friendly. There are those dogs that seem happy no matter what. Labrador Retrievers and Golden Retrievers are a good start, but you need more than a breed. You need a good breeder who understands the dog you need. A dog bred for hunting and field trials would not be a good choice

Service dogs are bred for the job. The job requires a dog that is temperamentally calm and connected to their handler. An emotional support dog is not considered a service dog under ADA, but the temperament of a service dog sounds like what you could use

Puppies are raised for Service dog work. Some "wash out" in training. These dogs are still good dogs and one of these might fit your needs.

I would start by investigating that route to get a dog that would suit your needs. The dog will likely cost some money to buy.

Good luck!
 

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I recommend you talk to shelters and rescue groups. They can identify specific individual dogs who will be able to handle your living situation.

I would also recommend going smaller than a lab/golden/shepherd. I too love big dogs, but it is far more difficult for them in apartment/condo life. With a smaller dog, you can pick them up if the elevator is crowded - so they aren't surrounded in a sea of legs.
 
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First off thank you for doing the kind thing for your dog and sending her to live somewhere where you knew she'd be happier. Clearly you cared for her. Second - you're right, a smaller dog would probably do best in your situation. You'll want to look for a mellow dog with a calm temperament.. even some smaller dogs can be too energetic/hyper for an apartment (chihuahuas and yorkies, in my experience), and a calm dog will probably make a better emotional support dog. But of course every dog is different, so take my advice with a grain of salt. Please adopt, don't shop. You mentioned you'd like an older dog, so it's almost certain you'll find your perfect companion in a shelter.
As to what breeds would work best... you said you have anti-social tendencies and prefer to spend time with animals, but also that your dog would have to interact with lots of people in the apartment complex. So you'd want a dog who would bond strongly to one person (you) but also one that's friendly to others. I would say look into a Cavalier King Charles.. many of my friends have lived with them and they are super friendly, quiet, and a delight to snuggle with 😊
But don't count out mixed breeds, they can be amazing pets too!
Best of luck
 
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