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Old 12-30-2012, 03:46 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Terry , welcome !

This is going to be interesting having you here to add to the discussion on working GSD, not a line, but a performance outside of sport .

I have had several certified dogs - including one for a person with Lou Gehrigs, another with MS , another with visual impairment , Guide dogs , emotional support and do have one that will be certified (when old enough) , for a veteran with PTSD .
On the forum we frequently get questions from people who actually have the need for a service dogs wanting to just go and buy a dog and train the dog for themselves . This included a dog for and by a person with legal blind definition .

Selection is all important .

I am wondering who your Dad , your mentor and inspiration was ?
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Old 12-30-2012, 04:04 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Other than the white on blue for all the reading I did hurting my eyes I really like your site! It helped me confirm my choice to purchase my own puppy and train with him on our own. I really like what you guys do and wish I had that type of money but that is no where near my budget! Hero was picked up at 8 weeks old and has been with us ever since. I have been diagnosed with several things upon returning from Afghanistan of them being PTSD, and I am here to tell you (even untrained) just having him at the house, and around me has helped me tremendously! I sleep better, i have less panic attacks, and I feel safe! PTSD DOGS WORK!! I can't imagine how much better it would be if I had a fully trained dog but that is half the fun I think. Welcome to the forums!!
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Old 12-30-2012, 04:18 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by SFGSSD View Post
Hello,
My name is Terry McCormack, I am a 25 year veteran Professional Working Dog trainer specializing in Service Dogs for disabled people. My breed of choice is the GSD although I do train other breeds for Service Dog work and I also train pets for basic OB and encourage training to the CGC level and beyond for pets. I also breed GSD's and have aspirations to close the gap between working and show line GSD's (A tall order I am aware but it is a dream of my late father who I apprenticed under and I would be proud to see his dream become a reality). I look forward to chatting with you all. If you would like to learn more about me and what I do, here is a link to my website.
Saint Francis German Shepherd Service Dogs
Nice meeting you all!

Welcome to the forum!

A question - your avatar says Ca but your web site says Lemonister, MA so i have to ask - where are you located?

Second is that I clicked on your web site listed above and it appears that maybe your web site wasn't designed for Internet Explorer, as the display has a few real problems and doesn't display properly for me in IE9.

Much better in Chrome browser.
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Old 12-30-2012, 04:21 AM   #14 (permalink)
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One other question if you don't mind - you mention both service dogs and ScH.

Are you saying that you can take the same dog and train him/her to do either?

Or maybe just littermates - one does servise/therapy and the others go on to do serious ScH work?
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Old 12-30-2012, 11:56 AM   #15 (permalink)
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You talk about "Elite" bloodlines, but I see no pedigrees... I am curious as to what bloodlines, what dogs you are using in your breeding program.

I wonder how many disabled people can afford $30K for a service dog? Most of the disabled folks I know are struggling to get by. For some reason I thought service dogs were placed with only a nominal charge to the client?

"the cost to obtain a Service Dog from Saint Francis German Shepherd Service Dogs varies. With help from donations, we are able to keep the cost to our clients ranging from under $20,000.00 to $30,000.00. The cost is determined by the level of training needed and lifestyle training needed to suit the specific needs of the client."
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Old 12-30-2012, 01:06 PM   #16 (permalink)
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the lines I saw from "affiliate" kennels provided in the links are show line dogs?

As you know I am always on the hunt search for those "special lines" .
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Old 12-30-2012, 01:19 PM   #17 (permalink)
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a comment on the bridging the gap between show and working and some comments you made on the web site regarding VA structure --

Which era ? and why?

I sent a swack of old GSD Reviews to a forum member, an enthusiastic young lady looking for a mentor . There is no better way to realize , quickly, the changes that have occurred over time - the fads . Some of this archival material goes back to the early 70's. EVEN in the AMERICAN show line dogs of the day there was some truly impressive balanced , particularly good fore-assembly (seems to have been an emphasis ) conformation that was close to standard , a universally appreciated standard US and Germany (continental Europe) that would be just as good now . Then as time progresses you see the start of loosing fronts and gaining extreme rears -- . Same evolution in SV style magazines with the show lines separating and having these accordian type arched backs - as VA representatives.
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Old 12-31-2012, 01:13 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Freestep View Post
You talk about "Elite" bloodlines, but I see no pedigrees... I am curious as to what bloodlines, what dogs you are using in your breeding program.

I wonder how many disabled people can afford $30K for a service dog? Most of the disabled folks I know are struggling to get by. For some reason I thought service dogs were placed with only a nominal charge to the client?

"the cost to obtain a Service Dog from Saint Francis German Shepherd Service Dogs varies. With help from donations, we are able to keep the cost to our clients ranging from under $20,000.00 to $30,000.00. The cost is determined by the level of training needed and lifestyle training needed to suit the specific needs of the client."

You are correct the majority cannot afford the costs associated with raising and training a Service Dog. The national average to raise and train a Service Dog exceeds $20,000.00 this is from my program or others. CCI is billing out there Dogs at over $30,000.00 and there are others that are billing them out over $30,000.00 as well. Keep in mind that these dogs are undergoing approximately 2,000 hours or more of training. The handler is undergoing 200 hours of training. $30,000.00 divided by 2,200 hours of training works out to be $13.64 an hour then minus food, equipment, travel and vet expenses along with other expenses directly related to the dog. When you look at it in a more realistic way $30,000.00 for a professionally trained Service Dog is not unreasonable. Those that can afford the costs are required to pay for the costs associated with training. Those that can afford a portion pay a portion of the cost; those that cannot afford any of the costs do not pay any of the costs. This model is in place to provide free and reduced services to the people that need it the most. Donations to pay for the costs for those who cannot afford a Service Dog is critical for us to be able to provide them at reduced or no cost to people that desperately need them.
The lines we are using are not advertised publicly. What I can say is that these dogs come from West German working/show line litters SV and or USCA or AKC pedigree showing working titles, clear HD/ED along with show and KKL rating at least 4 generations back.
In a paraphrasing definition, an Elite German Shepherd is “Sire SchH 3 KKL 1 4 generations back, Dam minimum SchH 1 KKL 1 with SG or better conformation rating 4 generations back.”
The true standard for an Elite German Shepherd created and suggested by Max Von Stephanitz in 1899 sadly does not exist. While the separation between true working and show line GSD’s continue today, we look to only breed the highest caliber of working traits while keeping close attention to nerve, balance, and conformation. By paying attention to working or show traits alone, is the cause of the separation in the breed and is a thought process we (my father and I) do not agree with.

Last edited by SFGSSD; 12-31-2012 at 01:16 PM.
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Old 12-31-2012, 01:23 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by carmspack View Post
a comment on the bridging the gap between show and working and some comments you made on the web site regarding VA structure --

Which era ? and why?

I sent a swack of old GSD Reviews to a forum member, an enthusiastic young lady looking for a mentor . There is no better way to realize , quickly, the changes that have occurred over time - the fads . Some of this archival material goes back to the early 70's. EVEN in the AMERICAN show line dogs of the day there was some truly impressive balanced , particularly good fore-assembly (seems to have been an emphasis ) conformation that was close to standard , a universally appreciated standard US and Germany (continental Europe) that would be just as good now . Then as time progresses you see the start of loosing fronts and gaining extreme rears -- . Same evolution in SV style magazines with the show lines separating and having these accordian type arched backs - as VA representatives.
You are absolutely right! You could find GSD's with the "All around" look, drive and temperament in the 40's, 50's even 60's then it got ugly as time went on with the extremes from both camps.
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Old 12-31-2012, 01:34 PM   #20 (permalink)
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One other question if you don't mind - you mention both service dogs and ScH.

Are you saying that you can take the same dog and train him/her to do either?

Or maybe just littermates - one does servise/therapy and the others go on to do serious ScH work?
Littermates may go on to do SchH, It is the bloodlines show the trainability in the titles in this sense. (However these days (sadly) with the abundance of "paper titles" you need to be very careful in selection from some lines to be sure what you are getting) SchH is a sport that I personally believe can be done with a Service Dog but I do not advise novice/inexperienced trainers to attempt it with a Service Dog.
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