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I don't intend to get a dog for the next couple of years, but in the distant future, I definitely want a Shepherd. However, I've heard it said that it takes years to find a great breeder, so I figure I will start my search sooner rather than later.

Are there any reputable breeders in the Massachusetts area?

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I'm not necessarily looking for a working dog, as I don't intend on competing in schutzhund or high level agility. The dog would be a nice family pet, though intelligence is top priority. I'm a little lost between German working lines, Czech dogs and what DDR is, so I'm looking for a little illumination on that topic. Colors are insignificant compared to temperment, but I'm not interested in liver, panda and other odd coat colors; I love sable, Black and Tan, and black and red. I don't envision my dream dog to be outrageously expensive, but I would spend $3000 on a lifelong friend (though lower is, of course, preferable.)

Also, I am unsure about gender for a puppy. I was thinking female, because they are slightly smaller and less dominant(?), but I have read that males bond more to female humans, and I am female...are there any other differences in shedding, personality, etc?
 

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Really, personality and such depends much more on the individual dog than on the gender. Some of the hardest, most dominant GSD's I know are females. So are some of the softest. When I got my dog, I wanted a male because I'd heard the opposite-gender-bonding thing too, though I can't really say I believe it anymore-- I think it goes back to compatible personalities more than anything else. I think there are varying schools of thoughts on that, so others may have had different experiences.

As for shedding, they'll both shed twice a year-- the first half and second :)

While I can't really offer any more insight in terms of gender because I've only owned a male GSD (I've worked with both genders and haven't noticed a difference, but that's not being around them 24/7).

As for breeders- I recommend Eric Grasso in CT (edit: I think he primarily imports, actually... I could be wrong. There are several members here with dogs from him)-- German Shepherds for Sale in Connecticut (CT) | Police Dogs for Sale
I would very much like to get a dog from him in the future. I'm not familiar with any breeders in MA, but I'm curious to see if anyone else is!
 

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I was on the hunt for a reputable breeder in Mass a year ago and honestly there are only breeders I'd stay away from. But I was also only looking for a WGSL so I can't comment on WL breeders.
 

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I got my dog at Ryanhaus in Salisbury, Ma. I can't say enough good things about Paula and her dogs. HOME - Ryanhaus Kennel
My dog was $1200
 

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You certainly don't need to spend 3 grand to find a nice dog:)

I know someone with a dog they got from Eric, he's a wonderful dog , I'd take him in a minute:).

I would talk to Ryanhaus in MA, wolfiesmom here on the board has a boy from her and he's quite the character:)

If you want to travel a little further, in NH is von hena c, there are a few members here with dogs from Pam, one of my males was out of one of her males, he was the perfect dog:)

My female's grandsire Reiko was owned by Pam at von hena c as well.
 

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and there's wolfiesmom posting when I was :)))
 

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and there's wolfiesmom posting when I was :)))
Hahaha and I was just about to add Von Hena c. Wolfie's sire is Xander Von Hena C. Gorgeous dog.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks for all the referrals. /is surfing through the websites now.

I still am a little confused about DDR v German v Czech dogs. Any differences in terms of temperament, size, coat etc?
 

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Size and coat should all be pretty much the same. Doesnt vary much between the lines. Temperament you will see the most varying degrees. And not just from West to East(DDR), to Belgium, or Czech. Some breeders have brought down certain traits in their own specific lines. I do find the East (DDR) to have more handler sensitivity in their lines. But again, each breeder can refine those traits and bring them out, or hide them (recessive). You would need to speak with the breeders to find out what their breeding goals are. What are the traits they are seeing in their dogs offspring. There are some threads on here that explain the different 'lines' of the breed. West German, East (DDR) German, Czech, West German Showline, American Showline, etc.
 
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