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The German Shepherd saga

post #1 of 25
Thread Starter 
Most of you know that we put our beloved Kenai to sleep recently. The house is not the same without her, and Mike wants a dog really bad, so we heard about a rescue-owner surrender in Washington, liked the look of his picture, and evaluated the history that was offered up about him. He is 2 years old, he barks and he has not been worked in quite sometime, was the information relayed to us. He was also recently neutered, so with prayers in our heart, we went last weekend to pick him up, driving 600 miles total for this special boy. By the time we got home, this beautiful german shepherd dog had destroyed my favorite shirt, a blanket and a sheet, and we didn't even know he had! But that's okay, chewing we can deal with.

We took him out to our back property, snapped a lunge line on him and let him run and sniff. It was nearing midnight, and we were dead tired, so we took him in the back way and put him in Kenai's cage for the night without letting any of the cats see him. So much for stealth- he went absolutely nuts in the kennel- barking, howling, scratching and running around in circles- it is a big cage. Mike maintained that it was impossible to stop a dog from barking, and I countered that it was not, and that I would not have a barking dog period! So I went into the room alone and 30 minutes later, Neko was not barking. He had not been terrorized or assaulted, I simply showed him that no barking brings it's own reward and barking is bad. And so, he slept the night without a peep.

Early in the morning, I took him with me to feed the horses. One minute he was heeling at my side, and the next with no warning he was streaking through the pre-dawn silent and intent in the kill. He was after Cleo! I braced my arm- he was on the lunge line and he hit the end of the line and was literally jerked off his feet while Cleo streaked by him and ran up the walnut tree, scared but safe. That was the deal breaker, and that day Mike drove the dog back to the rescue organization. We will not have an animal here that cannot get along with other critters.

So now, thanks to some unique set of circumstances, we go on Thursday to look at what will hopefully be our next German Shepherd dog. It will be one of the two below, if the pups pass the temperment test. They are 5 1/2 weeks old right now and young enough, that even with a high prey drive, you can raise them with cats and kittens and have them perfectly accepting of the other animals-

We want to evaluate the breeders dogs, but we have spoken on the phone with her now several times and I am impressed with her set of values, her breeding program and her and I think a lot alike- she also does GSD Rescue- One thing is for certain, these two pups look like a bundle of fun, energy and love!

post #2 of 25
MA, your deeply caring spirit knows that whatever setbacks and paths that unfold are meant to be. You have great courage and resilience. I adore these photos ~~~ and that's gonna be one lucky dog!
post #3 of 25
Aww, what adorable little puppies!!! I'm sorry the first dog didn't work out, and you had to drive so long to get him, PLUS take him back. I'm sure one of the pair you showed will work out just fine with your cats and horses. Best of luck!!!
post #4 of 25
I love the one in the background .... and my heart is with yours, always.
post #5 of 25
How sad! I am glad you returned that dog, I'm sure it will find another cat-free home to live in. A puppy is a good idea, so you and the cats can train it up properly! LOL!

Condolences on the loss of your beloved Kenai.
post #6 of 25
Close call there with Cleo. I'm glad you're going to try a puppy so it can get along with the kitties. My middle sister's husband has a big white Samoyed and he used to have a best kitty friend when he lived on a farm. He grooms himself unlike any other dog because of the kitty he knew.
post #7 of 25
I'm sorry that the rescue dog did not work out but I do pray that you all have a long and happy life with a new, trainable puppy!

I'd like to make one suggestion even though I'm sure you already have thought of this....ask the breeder for a health history on the family. We have a lab who has epilepsy and now cancer. My neighbors got his sister who has red mange. Guido has been the best companion ever but I have learned my time I will demand health documentation on the pups elders. I would not trade him for the world but it just breaks our hearts seeing him go with these illnesses.

I wish you the best of luck.
post #8 of 25
Oh MA, German Shepards absolutely melt my heart and those two are simply devine!
post #9 of 25
Thread Starter 
All her dogs come with a health guarantee and she will take a puppy/dog back at any time in their life if there is a problem. Have I said this yet? I really like this breeder!
post #10 of 25
What charming pups, MA! I'm sure one of them will steal your heart, and be a wonderful addition to your home. Too bad about the rescue. A good thing that you discovered his liability early, before there was time for much bonding. Eagerly awaiting updates.
post #11 of 25
Adorable...I can't wait to hear what your impressions are, and how they each behave, when you meet them
post #12 of 25
Originally Posted by gayef
I love the one in the background .....

That one's got a "softer" look somehow...the other one's got a bit o' the devil in him

The good thing is, they're both so adorable, I can't believe either would be a bad choice!
post #13 of 25
Oh how sweet are they!
post #14 of 25
Sorry about the rescue not working out, but I think you did the right thing. I doubt a 2 year old could ever be reliably trained to not go after the cats.

One of my BIL's favorite stories (he's weird ) is of a GSD he had at one point. He finally had to take it to the shelter and was asked, of course, why he was giving him up..."He only eats live food..." Seems the dog was living off the neighborhood cats, chickens, anything else that came within reach. Bill said he'd wondered why he didn't seem to be eating much if any of his food but wasn't losing any weight! I've never seen a picture but apparently he was a good looking dog as he says that there were three people wanting to plunk down the $100+ adoption fee for him before he even left the building.

Sounds like you've found you a good breeder! Good luck with your new furbaby!
post #15 of 25
Beautiful Pups!
Sorry it didn't work out with the rescue..Hopefully it finds a good "catless" home soon

And I agree with the poster who said that the guy in front appears a bit more of an "alpha devil" Good luck with the temperament testing! Then you will know which one to bring home!
post #16 of 25
Dear MA, I hope that one of those two is the puurfect choice and that you will have years and years of love together, good luck and best wishes with your puppy choice.
post #17 of 25
To bad it didn't work out Those puppies are cute!
post #18 of 25
Aww MA, they are great. Your not going to break them up though, are you? I don't know that I could pick!
post #19 of 25
MA, you definitely did the right thing, returning the first pup. Way to look out for the other critters The two new pups that you have to choose from look absolutely precious- best of luck!
post #20 of 25
Originally Posted by kittylover4ever
Aww MA, they are great. Your not going to break them up though, are you? I don't know that I could pick!
post #21 of 25
aw my goodness theya re gorgeous!
post #22 of 25
Aw MA I'm sorry to hear about the rescue, but if he was not good with the kitties, then it's for the best that he kind a catless home.
As for those puppies:::: What more can I say except to agree with the majority about splitting them up. I would have to take both. I love German Shepards, great dogs, one of my favorites. We had one when I has a kid and I loved her with all my heart!
post #23 of 25
Oh, MA - the one in the back has the most gentle eyes! How lucky are you and Mike! I'm really happy for you.
post #24 of 25
They are absolutely precious, both of them. It's going to be a hard choice, but the breeder sounds like a good and caring breeder. I'd be confident in getting a good natured puppy from her. I think it's a better idea to get a puppy as well. That way you will be able to raise it your way, and I know it will love your cats. I had a German Sheperd who is now passed on to the Rainbow Bridge, but I got her as a puppy, and she grew up loving my cat. They were best friends.
post #25 of 25
Aww, look at them... too precious! How on earth are you going to be able to pick one?!! Sorry that the first one didn't work out. Good that you found out when you did though, before you and Mike got attached to him.
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