|Barked: Tue Oct 1, '13 9:34am PST |
|When I was a kid, my first GSD friend was HUGE! That was in the early 1970's, and everything looks bigger when you are little, but if I am to fairly guess he was maybe 29." And just a classically awesome, old school fantastic GSD. That was in Manhattan, and he crashed through the window when he heard "his kids" screaming down the street (they were friends of ours), but that same dog was the first big dog who let me walk him in the park. Just a dutiful, wise and devoted soul. And.....HUGE.
Not as huge as what Royalair can sometimes do nowadays. But they definitely were big dogs. It is that "nostalgia" dog, as Onyx said, that lures people, and while they are not "correct," I would far prefer people do that (provided they do it right) than some designer mix, for the dogs are at least a potential contribution to the GSD gene pool. I personally see some hypocrisy or irony where purists on one hand don't like dogs not bred to the standard, but on the other hand complain about the gene pool. Separate populations doing their own thing, as long as they do it right (healthy, good tempered dogs responsibly bred), are not valueless in a gene pool sense.
Secondly, I don't care who, what, where, when you talk to - the GSD of old is not the dog you see today. The dogs were very level and did not have a lot of prey drive (Onyx, that breeder you emailed me about, the Czech guy - even he has a rant on this issue). They were dead sure and very level and even. So Royalair's stressing of the calmness of their dogs also has an important root.
Royalair is extreme on the logic. Their dog's are REALLY big (as in can be HUGE!) and their dogs are really, really, really calm. But if you wanted nostalgia, or if you liked big and wanted a truly ideal PET, there is nothing wrong with them. They are healthy, very easy to train, love the kids and the kitties. If a buyer is very concerned about the energy level of a GSD (which can be higher than it used to be) or the prey drive (which can be higher than it used to be), I'd far prefer they get that than a "working line" dog because "American show dogs stink." If you look at how many GSDs wind up in shelters, it strikes home. You never see the huge ones. Even were there not a return clause, I can't think of a reason a Royalair ends up in a shelter. They are so easy to get along with, and everyone in your town admires your dog.
I do not think they are an "anything" prospect other than pet. Should be ok for service, would do fine in OB although wouldn't be prime for anything too advanced (not exactly spilling with motivation), and for SAR, etc., I wouldn't think so. They are great PETS. I will say, responding to something a little earlier.....back in the old days, they did put some OB titles on their dogs. It isn't too uncommon for breeders to start off doing that, but once they get busier and have that client base, they taper off. And that is what happened with them.
I would briefly like to address the subject of size. This is VALIANTDALE'S ICON You will see him in Royalair pedigrees. He was a moose of a dog. He also had his UD and Sch III and topped the leading performance sire of the GSDCA for several years. He's one of the most significant dogs from this style of breeding, although from a kennel more devoted to a work focus. His size got in the way of nothing
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