Is my male intact GSD unhappy or stressed if he does not mate? - Page 1

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by Rocky KO on 11 January 2020 - 20:01

I come here for advice from more experienced people. I don't really care for that extra $500 or something that might be charged for stud service, or the profits of one pup or something. My main reason for considering breeding him is for my dog to be happier or more content during his life, or if the lack of mating is a stressor in his life, to eliminate that. Is my male dog unhappy if he does not mate since he is intact and might have that "need"?

The dog has full pedigree and a good bloodline and is bought from a reputable breeder.


by bantam7 on 12 January 2020 - 03:01

No, he will not be unhappy or unfulfilled if he does not mate. Most intact male pet dogs never breed. Not castrating by default was standard in the US until a short time ago and it remains the standard in the UK and other European countries. I actually think their pet dogs are happier and better-adjusted than ours, but this is because their owners do more things with them... like walk them.

Back on topic, dogs seemingly don't abstractly think about sex (or most other things) the way humans do; the concept or trigger, i.e. the smell of a bitch in heat or the right rubbing sensation, has to be in front of them. They seem to forget or otherwise move on fairly quickly after the trigger is removed. "Living in the moment", essentially.

You sound like a thoughtful owner. Lucky dog.

by Rocky KO on 14 January 2020 - 03:01

Thank you for the thorough reply and the kind words. That definitely puts me more at ease in the case that I do not breed him. Still, I cant help but to think that procreation is a natural instinct and would make an animal feel more content/fulfilled. No one would want to die a virgin lol, right? Maybe i'll just fish around for potential qualified healthy females near my area and see if anyone is interested.


Afterall, look at this handsome boy


Rocky Vom Roten Wald


by Hundmutter on 14 January 2020 - 05:01

Well yes, he is very handsome if the viewer is a person, and one who likes the type of dog; but it isn't clear that this is what a bitch sees when she looks at a male dog for a potential mate, she might not find him irrisistable at all. So I don't believe you should even jokingly be thinking about your question in those terms.

What Bantam said above is absolutely correct in my experience of keeping many neutered and unneutered males. [And thanks Bantam for your kind words about UK dogs & dog-keeping in general :-) ]  We also need to remember that allowing him to 'lose his virginity' is much more interesting a concept for humans than for the way dogs' minds work; and that a mating would probably result in pups. Pups are hard work, especially for the bitch owner, and they have to be found suitable buyers, so it is way more complicated than just letting him experience sexual activity.  And for my money he IS more likely to miss it, at least a bit, more, if he has a fully completed & satisfied encounter but is thereafter denied further adventures.

OTOH castration would not necessarily stop you feeling your dog was 'missing out' since it does not stop some males wanting to 'go thru the motions' of mating;  I currently have a (long ago) neutered male GSD who constantly tries to 'hump' the (also neutered) little bitches who live on either side of me, one in particular of which he seems especially fond !

by ZweiGSD on 14 January 2020 - 09:01

Along the same lines that Bantam7 was saying, the contentment/happiness of your dog is going to be based on what YOU do with him. It is a rare dog that does not want to be involved with his human.

I have only had one male GSD (I prefer females) but he lived to the age of 14. He was intact but was never bred even though he was around females in heat. From what I could tell he was a very happy dog and enjoyed his work in obedience, narcotics and bitework. He was also included in all family activities.

Most intact dogs I have known have never been bred but they do not seem any less happy than dogs that have.

by Rocky KO on 14 January 2020 - 16:01

I did not in any way mean that he is attractive to other females haha. I simply meant that he is a pretty dog and would make nice pups. And yes, of course I would only stud him to someone who has had previous breeding experience and only after checking paperwork. I don't think any of us could actually tell whether or not an animal is content or discontent with the absence of mating. I can only deduce that mating is the absolute number 1 goal of any animal based on my general knowledge of animals. One could even say that purpose of life is to reproduce, at least thats what nature seems to imply.

That last point about missing it more after experiencing it versus never having experienced it is the biggest concern for me as I've thought the same thing when considering mating him.


by Hundmutter on 15 January 2020 - 03:01

Yeah, some people find that with some animals. You have to remember every dog is a different individual, and one dog might have a mating encounter and then never seem to miss getting any more; another might seem much more upset about that. You would only find out which applied in your boy's case by letting him mate a bitch. But then you have to consider : not only how you might feel if he does seem troubled afterwards, but how you will handle some behavioural problems which could maybe arise ? Some dogs will be forever trying to run off if they get a whiff of an in-season bitch somewhere; some will just become an extreme pest to every bitch they know / live with or near. Can become tiresome, IF it results. This is all speculation based on a range of other peoples' experiences over decades with their dogs; is it worth risking with yours (?) is what you need to weigh up.

by apple on 15 January 2020 - 06:01

You have zero valid reasons to breed your dog. Breeding GSDs has nothing to do with how "pretty" your dog is or his sex life. It is about trying to improve the breed as a working dog.

by astrovan2487 on 15 January 2020 - 07:01

I admire your concern for your dog’s happiness but you are humanizing him way too much and not thinking about the impact of the dog losing his virginity so to speak

There are many, many, many good looking, well bred, titled, health tested males that will never be bred and are most likely just as happy as the dogs that are studs. No ethical owner that has the best interests of the breed in mind is going to want to breed their female to your male for the reasons you listed.

Unless your male is constantly around females in heat i doubt not mating him will make him any more stressed or unhappy than if you mated him.


by Koots on 15 January 2020 - 08:01

Look in the local animal shelters, SPCA, rescue agencies, pound, and classified ads for GSD's. There are far too many people breeding dogs for similar silly reasons as you have stated. Stop anthropomorphising.


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