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German Shepherds

If you are wondering what is the right dog for you, this is the place to be. In this introductory forum we talk about topics such as breed vs. mix, size, age, grooming, breeders, shelters, rescues as well as requirements for exercise, space and care. No question is too silly here. This particular forum is for getting and giving helpful, nice advice. It is definitely not a forum for criticizing someone else's opinion, knowledge or advice. This forum is all about tail wagging and learning.

  
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Thor CGC

God of Thunder
 
 
Barked: Thu Sep 13, '12 8:53am PST 
I am looking into getting a German Shepherd as my next dog. I currently live with one, although he isn't mine.

I REALLY don't want a show line dog, but most of the others are intense working lines. I am looking for a Service Dog candidate and can't have the drive that most of them do.

Any suggestions of where to look or breeders? I am looking for somebody on the west coast. I am located in washington state.
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Mulder

Spooky Mulder
 
 
Barked: Thu Sep 13, '12 6:17pm PST 
You are in a GSD breeder hotspot my friend.

Even if you do not want insane drive, any SD candidate has to have some measure of drive to do its job effectively.

Ridley is from Jean at Schraderhaus kennels in Roy, WA. He has a full sibling from a previous breeding that is an active therapy dog for retired vets. She has bred dogs who are active medical alert and mobility assistance dogs. Her particular pedigrees tend to fall more towards the "intense working dog" side of things, but she is a phenomenal breeder, and certainly produces more moderate dogs that can be used in service work.

And even if she doesn't have something for you, she can surely recommend you to someone who does.
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Happy

The Boy Wonder
 
 
Barked: Thu Sep 13, '12 7:32pm PST 
I'll second Jean... she's who I was actively looking at for my next service dog (still would be if I could come up with the funds for one of her dogs). I've done a lot of digging in her pedigree's and she has a lot of different dogs active in therapy And service work. She has been wonderful talking to me about my needs and wants with a dog.
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Zephyr

1213425
 
 
Barked: Sun Sep 16, '12 9:20am PST 
Puppies will always be individuals. Even the world class schutzhund litter can throw a 'dud' as it were but that dud may be someone's ideal agility partner. Breediing is a crapshoot as much as a science and pet-quality and non-drivey dogs happen even in the best researched pedigrees. If a breeder doesn't admit that than they're lying. That being said most of Jean's dogs are quite well bred and not 'over the top' as it were. If you don't want a prey monster she won't give you one.

I would caution you against breeders who will outright say that any of their puppies are suitable for anything. There are some GSD breeders in particular who are guilty of that sin. You want the breeder to know their lines forward and backwards and know what they produce. That snugglepuss could be a police dog or a family pet doesn't usually jive.
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Thor CGC

God of Thunder
 
 
Barked: Sun Sep 16, '12 1:04pm PST 
I have been looking at their website quite a bit. I understand that there needs to be some drive, but some of the shepherds we get into class are just ridiculous.
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Tiller- (Skansen's- Ira in the M

I DO Exist...To- Drive You Batty
 
 
Barked: Sun Sep 16, '12 10:39pm PST 
Please don't disqualify rescue.

I am not exactly the SD Queen o' Knowledge laugh out loud, but one thing I think I know are the soundness issues and not wanting to put all this time into a candidate and have it fall flat. Yes?

That said, I am not some rescue only freak....all my dogs are breeder dogs. I also have twenty+ years with GSDs. If you are looking for a specific working prospect, with this breed you need to get a two year old dog. Now of course this doesn't apply "generally"....as in you are open-minded to what that work will be. Just see where the wind leads you, you just know you'll work him in something. If he stays sound enough frown But I digress laugh out loud But if you want that SPECIFIC work prospect, I totally do NOT recommend a puppy. No one I know who has been on this breed for a while does. If you are open minded about the outcome, then it is fine. Otherwise, you want something older.

And when you get THERE, rescue is equally able to provide you with the right dog. I've had two in my rescue (Southpaws) who would have suited you to a tee, and as a foster based rescue, whatever you needed tested or assessed could be done. Don't believe the hype you hear on some forums. The prominent GSD rescue here has a program SPECIFICALLY for dogs in working placements, and I am talking k-9. Dogs utterly unsuited for pet placements. Obviously not what you want, but said to underscore a point. They get in the crackheads and get them into K-9 units, and have been extremely successful. This breed, particularly with the more modern pedigree, has a propensity to land in the rescue system between 1.5-2.5 years old. The potential to find a perfect prospect is high with an enlightened enough rescue, you spend less, and help support an organization saving lives.
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Bianca CGC- TT HIC Thd- ♥

What big ears- you have...
 
 
Barked: Mon Oct 8, '12 5:57pm PST 
I know I've seen some breeders before so maybe you can find some who have produced multiple service dogs, therapy dogs and other working dogs in the past so that might indicate a good option...
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April

1162600
 
 
Barked: Fri Oct 12, '12 12:17pm PST 
Not a puppy, they need time to grow and become strong...I have two shepherds one is the working type and the other one is show t ype,,..the working dog is always looking for something to do which is great, i can do almost anything with him but when he has nothing to do h gets crazy and becomes annoying, the show time is very protective less active, stronger and bigger but isnt so active, he is tjhe opposite, both are amazing guard dogs, extremely smart but i can count with my working GS all the time...the other one is just good to guard my house and sit next to me...
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Hany,- Polyxena &- Zandi

1237334
 
 
Barked: Wed Oct 24, '12 12:15pm PST 
I cant recommend any breeders in your country but dont totally dismiss showline, I have a West German showline dog who is also a therapy dog and he has done some assistance work with a young female with autism and moderate learning dissabilies. He does have a high prey drive but when working he switches that part off, his temp is 200% and he has visited acute psychiatric wards, residential/nursing homes and supported living properties, he has acted as a stooge dog when rehabilitating problem dogs, he is great for socialising pups of any breed, I trust his instincts totaly
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Thor CGC

God of Thunder
 
 
Barked: Thu Oct 25, '12 1:45pm PST 
I have tried the rescue route once, and I will never do it again for a SD candidate. It just is too much risk. I will *always* adopt and animal for a pet though.

I won't do a show line just because I see all the dogs who fall apart around age 5. The slanted back also won't work as they aren't as structurally stable as the flat back.
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