My name is Julie, and I live in s/e Michigan. I live with my two 4-legged daughters, Ilse and Ava.
Ilse is a black and red, short coat gal who we think turned 3 this month. She is a rescue. She was found as a stray at about 9 months old. Long story short, she was adopted out from the shelter, had puppies at only 10 months old, was neglected and abused and forced to be surrendered back to the shelter after a neighbor reported her adoptive family. The shelter gave her to the rescue, who had her spayed, had a hernia repaired, and had a large growth on her leg removed that the vet determined was caused by 'repeated blunt trauma'. When I adopted her, they think she was 15 months old. She was terrified of men and dog aggressive. We have worked hard, and she is now fine with men and dogs, has her CGC, and is a certified Therapy Dog. She does very well in obedience (although, no competing yet), and it turns out she *loves* to track! So that is what we are focusing on: Tracking. I hope to do some competing with her, one day, in tracking, and maybe go on to do Search and Rescue work. She is an amazing girl, with gold colored eyes that look right into your soul. It's almost unsettling, the way she looks at you sometimes...not in a scary way, but in a soul-searching way. As GSDs typically are, she is so intelligent, and also very athletic. She loves obstacles and LOVES to jump! We have developed a very special bond
My second girl is Ava. She is now 7 months old, and is a black and tan, bi-color plush coat. She is quite a character! She is such a lover and snuggler, makes me laugh constantly, and she has the fastest tongue in town LOL. She is scary smart. Studies you, and studies things, and figures them out. Once I was carrying bricks in a bucket and would carry the empty bucket back to the pile after emptying it at the other side of the yard. After several trips with Ava watching, I turned around after stacking the last of the bricks from the bucket, and there was Ava, with the bucket handle in her mouth, waiting to walk back with me. More recently, I was washing my hair in the tub, and realized I'd forgotten to grab a towel. When I turned, there was Ava, with the towel at her feet...she had seen me wash my hair and dry it with the towel, and apparently had realized I needed the towel
. She has wonderful focus and really nice drive. She is doing very well in obedience, and we hope to do our first CD trials in a few weeks. We started doing 2-3 classes a week when she was 12 weeks old, and were doing most of her work off-leash by 4 months old.
My family had GSDs while I was growing up, but as an adult I had an assortment of mutts. Don't get me wrong, I LOVE mutts, but I knew in my heart that I had to get back to the Shepherds
. So I am very glad to have these two girls in my life. Especially now that my human daughters are grown and on their own, and I am on my own now, as well.
Here are some photos of Ilse and Ava: