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I found out last week that Havoc has degenerative lumbosacral stenosis. He has a herniated disc that is causing nerve compression. I spoke at length with the neurologist about the cause of this and he said that this is something that happened because of early degeneration in the spine and bad hips are also a small contributing factor. As a breeder would this concern you? I emailed his breeder and she came back basically saying that it is my fault because clearly I can't manage a high drive dog. I really don't want to turn this into a breeder rant, I don't want, or expect anything from her. I just get really sick of reading thread after thread picking apart small details of GSD's temperament but no one in the breed seems to want to pay attention to the fact that the health of the German Shepherd is in shambles. Should I be choked about this?? or just forget about it, move on, and get into another breed like most previous GSD people I know.



BTW Havoc turns 2 this weekend and will likely never get to be a normal dog again.
 

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Sorry but at 2 years old, seeing a serious degenerative disease if the spine is NOT management. IMHO.




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She should be thanking you for letting her know. This is insanity. I have 3 young (under 3) high drive dogs, 1 GSD, 2 mal, and I refuse to wrap them in bubble wrap before we go outside. I have 1 acre fenced, and everyday They run like wild beasts, slam into each other and things like trees, jump over things and jump straight up in the air after balls, go sliding chasing rolling balls, etc. and though I try to keep the really hairy situations to a minimum or nonexistent, it just happens with these types of dogs. All of my dogs have xrayed with good hips, no spine problems, etc. you DID NOT cause this. Your dog has 2 nasty orthopedic problems and horrible allergies to boot (and I think you mentioned that strangers cant handle him at all either? also a fault in my opinion)the breeder should never ever combine those 2 dogs ever again, and should look closely at the litter mates and any other dogs the parents have produced to know if either parent should be bred ever again period.

I got my GSD from a reputable breeder, often recommended on here, that others have nice dogs from. However, she too has some allergy problems and a very strange screwed up temperament. I have really worked hard with her to make her so she is able to safely go out in public and not be a liability in general. She also has a very mild genetic heart condition. The breeder knows these things and kept in touch with all my dogs litter mates for comparison and went to her own vet about everything too. She has offered me another puppy for free whenever I am ready. She was very appreciative that I discussed everything with her. I would still recommend her to people, I think I just got the short end of the stick this time, and its no one's fault.

I know you love your dog, but you will have to seriously consider his quality of life with how it relates to him specifically, not to dogs in general, since he's not a typical family pet type dog. I'm sorry :hug::hug::hug:
 

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not a breeder just wanted to say how sorry i am that you and yr beloved companion have to go thru this. so sad.
 

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Thank you, before talking to the neurologist I felt sick to my stomach thinking this was my fault. He assured me it was not and that this would have happened no matter what I did with him. For her to come back saying it is my fault, just really struck a nerve. He does have many other issues which I have let her know about and she never asks questions about it, just brushes them off as my fault. (He is far from my first dog!)

I just feel like so many important health issues in this breed get swept under the carpet. No one wants to talk about it.

I have heard that mink can produce bad backs, havoc is 5-5 on mink.
 

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I have had the same issue with my breeder as well.

It's sad that some people will not help seek out the answers and find solutions instead of just placing blame.

Situations like this don't help our breed at all. Very sad indeed.

I am sorry your going through this and I am sorry for your dog as well.

I am sure more people will chime in and offer support if you post in the health section as well.

If you love the breed, then find a breeder that you really feel comfortable with who you feel will "air their laundry - both clean and dirty" honestly.
 

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Very sorry to hear about your situation Kristi :(....It is most definitely not your fault at all. I currently do not have a GSD but have huskies and malamutes....I have found in those breeds that for every one good ethical breeder there are 5 that are not up to those same good ethical standards. I am really starting to see that this applies to the GSD as well. I wish you and your dog nothing but the best! Give him the best life you can until you feel that it is best that your havoc cross over the rainbow bridge....always hard but even harder in situations like yours but you need to do what's best for him :)
 

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so sorry about Havoc:( it is NOT your fault.

I'm sorry your breeder put the blame on you, not fair, tho I wouldn't say it was her fault either unless she is intentionally breeding dogs that are known to have hip/spine issues.

I have had gsd's my entire life, never had a hip or elbow issue, but did have one with spine issues..Poop happens, it will never change my mind tho, to go with another breed.

Hang in there, I hope Havoc can get some relief
 

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Kristi, sorry to hear of your situation. The breed is rift with health and temperament issues because of the breeding practices, reminds me of the Collie breed, everyone wanted a dog like Lassie in looks and temperament.....look at them now.
The sad thing is that the breed is so backed into a corner genetically, because of people trying to replicate what they personally like, that you can have best of intentions and still it won't stop the slide. Unfortunately, the breed has to deteriorate further until people wake up and get it....hopefully your guy has a good painfree life....Good Luck.
 

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I'm sorry to hear about Havoc. Unfortunately there seem to be plenty of people out there who only divert blame instead of acknowledging and correcting problems.
 

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I'm really not blaming the breeder....I guess I'm just shocked at the complete lack of concern. I would have thought that producing a dog with this kind of a debilitating disease would be a breeders worst case scenario.

What (if anything) can be done to get this breed healthy? How do you find healthy lines?

(And for anyone interested here is his pedigree....he also has terrible allergies am hip dysplasia.)
** link removed by ADMIN. Just don't want this to turn into a "named" breeder bashing thread**
http://http://www.pedigreedatabase.com/german_shepherd_dog/dog.html?id=1871949-xtreme-havoc-von-den-hoehenluft
 

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All you can do is make sure that the breeder has all of the information about your dog's condition that you have. After that it is up to them.
 

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Personally, I would ask the neurologist for a write-up and send it to the breeder to PROVE it had nothing to do with how you raised the dog ... then write off that breeder.

Obviously they don't care about what they are breeding. As a breeder myself, if someone called and told me that a pup I sold them had luxating patellas (something common in Cresteds) I would ask them to bring the pup to my vet for an exam. Not all vets are competent and I would want to hear it from a vet I trusted. If it was true I would then get in touch with all the puppy owners from that litter and have them bring their pups to my vet for exams to make sure no-one else had the problem. I would also pass the info on to the owner of the stud dog (it takes two to tango) so they knew.
 

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Some people respond to bad news with denial, even anger. It is a coping mechanism.
I like the idea of sending her the neuro consult write-up and hopefully she (the breeder) can settle down and give it some thought after a bit.
 

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No breeder has litters that these things don't crop up, better breeders have it occur less, and not so good breeders have it occur more frequently. That is why guarantees give false expectations, because they guarantee nothing. I am not sure that the breeder isn't concerned....but after acknowledging your information, realistically what can you do? I mean after all is said and done, anger, condolences, indignation, or anything else by the breeder is not going to change anything. This comes with breeding....especially this breed as it is today.
We can only learn from these and strive to not repeat certain results.
 

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I had a similar problem, and was accused of letting my dog get into rat poision when Kiya started having seizures. Only to find out that her sire produced 2 subsequent litters with a few pups that also had seizures.
I hope you can successfully manage your dogs health issues.
Regardless of all the issues my heart will always belong to GSD's.
 

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No one wants to produce dogs with problems. But finding that a dog does have issues, puts the breeder into a dilemma. They can either accept the verdict of your vet and then decide whether or not to breed sire and dam, or sire, or dam again. Or, they can fight the verdict, they can believe that it was due to something outside of their control, feeding the wrong food, lettting the dog jump up and down into a vehicle, running the dog into the ground on hard surfaces. They are thinking this because the alternative is to make hard decisions about their breeding stock.

Some of it might be that they are afraid that you are going to want another dog or your money back. And some of it might be the thought of not breeding their dog again.

Like Cliff said, stuff crops up when you are breeding, and everyone has a different idea of what that means for them and their dogs. I mean, some people on this site would say that if a dog or bitch created one dog or bitch that has hip dysplasia, they should never breed that dog and bitch again. Others would suggest not breeding the pair again. Others would look at the numbers and decide whether it makes sense to breed the dog and the bitch again.

Sometimes it is hard to accept because you truly never had an issue before that you knew of. And sometimes it is hard to accept because in the 2 years that you have had your dog, they have bred this dog 3 more times, and there are 15-25 dogs out there already with the same genetics. If there is a problem, then yours is just the beginning of the nightmare.

There are lots of reasons for siezures, so I am not surprised that a breeder would ask if the puppy got into something.

In either case though, breeders should care about what happens to pups that they have bred, and try to provide as much moral support as possible, while honoring any contract that they made with you.

It is far easier to go the extra mile for someone who admits they failed their dog, than it is for someone who believes that you caused the problem by making poor breeding decisions even if that is true. I am not suggesting that you should agree that this was environmental, but from a breeder viewpoint, it is easier to give a person another dog when they lost theirs due to a terrible accident, than it is to accept that the dog had a terrible genetic issue. But a good breeder would still want to know. Because good breeders do not want to produce puppies with serious health issues.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
I really do understand that breeders have a tough job and I really don't think that health problems coming up in their lines should be their responsibility in that thy should be giving replacements, refunds etc. but I do think that things like this should be taken seriously. Otherwise how do you keep or improve upon the health of the breed? I expected to be asked a million questions about exactly what has been going on with the dog, reports from the vet, neurologist and radiologist etc. I did not expect a 3 sentence email telling me that its hard to keep high drive dogs healthy. I would have been happy with a "okay, thanks for letting me know." It just feels like issues are so often swept under the carpet or blamed on the handler and now the breed is hugely suffering.
 

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I am sorry you are going through this.

I think that your breeder was very unhelpful to you in their response.

In the end though, you have a dog with some serious issues, and no matter what she said or did, it won't change that.

Maybe some others that have dealt with this know of some good supplements, and maybe some therapies that will help your dog have the best life with however much time he has.

It really sucks that your breeder doesn't realize that you are going through the Fiery Pit right now, and what you did not need was her defensive garbage.

I really do understand that breeders have a tough job and I really don't think that health problems coming up in their lines should be their responsibility in that thy should be giving replacements, refunds etc. but I do think that things like this should be taken seriously. Otherwise how do you keep or improve upon the health of the breed? I expected to be asked a million questions about exactly what has been going on with the dog, reports from the vet, neurologist and radiologist etc. I did not expect a 3 sentence email telling me that its hard to keep high drive dogs healthy. I would have been happy with a "okay, thanks for letting me know." It just feels like issues are so often swept under the carpet or blamed on the handler and now the breed is hugely suffering.
 

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I am so sorry about your dog. It looks like a very nice pedigree. Who would have thought you would be going through this right now? I sure would not have guessed it.
 
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