Former/Future GSD owner... getting the "itch"... - German Shepherd Dog Forums

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Old 12-09-2012, 09:26 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Former/Future GSD owner... getting the "itch"...

They're like an addicition, these GSD's.
I've had four German Shepherd's share my life. My first was Dutch. She was a bi-color. Super intelligent and beautiful. We did agility and tracking and she was my heart. After she passed, years later, I got Gracie. Gracie was my BYB problem child. She was tall and lanky, and was the classic black and tan. I had her for four years, and eventually had to have her put to sleep when her problems became overwhelming for her. Then I took in a older rescue GSD, Delilah. She was a beautiful black and red, lived out her remaining years with me, lounging in the house and strolling through the yard. Finally came Murphy. He was outstanding in both conformation and intelligence. He was a bi-color, with the most perfect markings. We did obedience, tracking and agility. I lost Murphy to a freak accident when a car plowed through our fenced yard, hitting him in the process. My heart was broken.
After I lost Murhphy, I decided to take a break from dogs all together.
Eventually we decided to open our home to rescues of all breeds/ages/situations. We'd foster dogs who needed that little extra something and when they were ready, we'd help find them the perfect home. Over the past five years, we've had six of these dogs come into our lives.... three were complete failures.
And by failure, I mean... I currently find myself with three dogs, three of which were failed fosters.
I have Greta, my shadow. She's a yellow Labrador Retriever who came to me after the kennel she was used for breeding at was shut down, in the wake of a puppy mill scandal. She's a beautiful, wonderful dog and has attached very strongly to me. I couldn't put her through any more trauma, so I decided to keep her. Then I ended up with Sadie, the Toy Poodle. Sadie came to me from a "private" owner who simply wanted her groomed. She never came back for her... which is just as well, as the poor dog was in horrible shape. She was two years old and had never been groomed or brushed. Her mouth was matted shut, her ears matted to the side of her head, her tail matted to her hind legs. You couldn't see the pads of her feet and under this massive body covering mat was skin riddled with infection. I talked with some people from the rescue was worked with, and considered trying to place Sadie, once we had her healthy again, but she won us over and we kept her. And then this past February my husband brought home a Great Dane that had "wandered up" to someone's house. A trip to the vet revealed that she'd most likely been hit by a car months before, had a broken tail, a broken pelvis and a crushed foot. Ten months and thousands of dollars later, we're still trying to get her foot to heal. I don't know how much longer she has with us. Her health is declining, and we've committed to not allowing her to suffer. We'll keep doing what we can, and then when it's time, when she lets us know it's time, we'll let her cross the bridge.

So, anyway, I'm obviously not in the market for another dog right now... but that doesn't stop me from looking and dreaming. Here lately I've found myself "planning" for my next dog, my next German Shepherd.
I'd told myself, after Murphy, that I'd not put myself through the heart ache of another German Shepherd, but now that I have Greta, I realize it's not the breed, but the loss of the dog himself, that hurt so much. I know when I loose Greta, I'll be devastated, just like I was with GSD's that have come and gone in my life. And when I browse the internet, looking at random dogs, I find myself always going back to the German Shepherd.

There are no quality breeders in my area, the closest is nearly 400 miles away. We have lots and lots and lots of back yard breeders but no one who really submits to all the testing and appropriate care that goes into to producing a correct German Shepherd.

I've decided I'll look for either a dark sable, or a bi-color, male puppy. I haven't chosen a name yet, lol, but his "color" will be sage green. I've already decided what I'll paint on his bowl, and what material I'll make his bed from.....

Maybe, if I'm lucky, I'll be in the situation to get him while Greta is still with me. That would be awesome.

And let's be honest, at any point, I may find that "perfect" dog in a shelter or through one of the random phone calls I recieve, and my "well bred, male, puppy" could turn out to be a geriatric female on her last breath... and I'd be okay with that too. I realize I'm ready to open my heart to another German Shepherd... someday.

(cookies for anyone who made it all the way through that random rambling of mine.)

Last edited by mehpenn; 12-09-2012 at 09:32 AM.
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Old 12-09-2012, 11:36 AM   #2 (permalink)
Jag
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I feel your pain. After 3 GSD's (actually 4, but the first I didn't know was a GSD because he was all black until years later), I had to take a break. My bitch had just turned my world upside down and shook my faith that there were any 'good ones' out there anymore. Slid into a deep depression, tried to move on with a Pug. No joy. I missed having my 'right hand man' and couldn't deal without a shepherd at my side. Once you've had one, there is NO other dog!!

Grim came to me a few months ago. The love is back in my heart, the hope back in my life. Embrace what you're feeling. It's real. There's just no substitute, and sometimes it pays off to take that chance again. Nothing brings you as much heart ache nor as much joy as a GSD.
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Old 12-09-2012, 11:42 AM   #3 (permalink)
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what a story ! hope you find your heart-dog.
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