Claws trimming for GSDs can be considered as indicator of their activity level. If you ever have to trim your GSD claws, it means your dog does not get enough exercise. If your GSD has plenty of outside time, when he can run, walk, and jump his claws will be filed off naturally at the same rate as they grow. If claws are growing out to the point you can hear them clicking on your hardwood floor, or even worse to the point of curling at the tips, your GSD needs more active time.
Also, please, consider that you walking or even jogging with your dog on the leash is exercise for you, but not for your GSD. Your GSD can run with the speed 30 mph, so make sure to let your dog run off leash, chase sticks or balls, hunting down squirrels or whistle pigs (small chance of catching them, but a lot of fun and exercise). Good exercise for GSD is to follow bicycle or ATV, but make sure to make pit stops and hydrate your dog.
GSD puppy vs baby or toddler
We will never get tired to repeat that German Shepherd Dog is the best breed for children. However, we do not recommend families with babies or toddlers as only children getting a GSD puppy. Strange? Not really, let's see why.
Many parents love the idea of getting their baby or toddler a puppy so "they can grow up together". But what's actually happening? Cute fuzzy GSD puppy within a year will turn into full of energy 75-80 lbs "teenage" dog, who will see your baby or toddler as a same age playmate. Now, imagine GSD play. Can 2-3 year old who is barely holding up on his feet take this kind of play?
Now, if you have a mature GSD (2 years or older) when you welcome a new baby to your family, adult GSD will be sensitive enough to feel that your baby is fragile and will be gentle around baby, but still can be a great playmate when your child is ready for it. If you do not have children, but planning within next couple years, it's a good time to get a puppy, so it's trained and ready for your baby.
On the other hand, if you have a baby or a toddler, and no adult dog wait until your toddler is 4 years old ( at least, child should walk, run, jump, walk up & down stairs surely and without support, do some talking). If you get a GSD puppy at this age, your child and GSD will be able to play, grow and learn together. GSD will be very attached to your child, and your child will not even remember time of his life when he did not have a dog.
On the pic: Sparky 3 years old and baby 3 months old
GSD for children
People often ask us if German Shepherd is a good dog for children. Answer is "definitely yes". However, nobody asks us or themselves another important question: are my children good for German Shepherd or any other dog for that matter? It is very important to develop compassion in children towards your pets. Make sure to teach your children that your German Shepherd Dogs also have feelings, emotions, that they love their people unconditionally, and if they have to they will sacrifice their life for your safety. The best way to teach children how to behave with animals is self-example, but also close supervision is needed in little ones. It's for animal's sake, not child's. As they grow up, children may hurt animals because they don't know pain, or suffer themselves yet, so may not be able to understand their actions. Be attentive to your children as well as your pets.