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Just got news this morning from the breeder I've been working with (von ryanhaus) that the litter I had my heart set on is going to be tiny, meaning I don't get one yet. I know patience is a virtue, but we've been patient for 2 and a half years since we had our hearts set on a GSD. We were just waiting for the right time and the right breeder to come along. Plus we wanted to gauge our readiness and availability to train train train.

Ayways, my questions is, is it wrong to be picky about looks? I know that no GSD is a bad GSD regardless of color/coat/etc. But is it wrong to have a preference? She has a sable litter coming around the same time, but to be honest (and no offense to anyone that has one), I'm not the biggest fan of the darker sables. I'm not incredibly picky, I just want a black and red blanket/saddle/or anything in between with a east german working line structure. I used to be insanely picky (had to be black/red saddle perfect coat length + had to have great temperament) but then I realized I was setting my expectations way too high. And yeah, I do realize health/temperament should come first.

Anyways, I feel bad telling her I'd rather wait until her next black/red litter (next January) or go somewhere else. And it is looking more like go somewhere else since I'll be moving out of state just before the next litter, making it difficult for me. I'm I wrong in this situation? I feel so awful :confused::(
 

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I think that temperment is the most important thing to look for in a pup but I also believe that color is also important. JMO

I want a pup that has the perfect temperment for me but I also want to be attracted to that puppy.
 

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No-I think you can get good temperment and also get the color you like-but it is also important to like whatever litter you are getting the puppy from -so I don't think there is anything wrong with saying you want to wait or even go elsewhere
 

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There is absolutley nothing wrong with having a color preference (of course temprament, health, etc are of great importance). If you want a black Lexus and the dealer only has red, white, and blue, you will probably wait until they can get you a black one or go to another dealer.

There are people that say you should not buy according to color and I totally disagree (again reiterating health, temprament are considered a given in the search).
We all have preferences. I like you don't care for sables, I appreciate their look and get that many people love them and I respect that but my preference is black and red...and I am picky...not black and tan, not black and sliver, black and red so that is what I get when I get a puppy/dog.

I don't get bashing people for their personal preferences and unfortunately it happens on here occasionally. Get what you want, it's your dog and your money. Don't worry about what anybody else thinks. If you've waited 2.5 years it sounds to me like you've done your homework.
 

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I don't think there's anything wrong with going to a different breeder. I think its crazy when people wait years for a pup from a breeder because they're 20+ down the line. As much as I understand the importance of a good breeder, I don't even know where my life would be in 2 years and am quite shocked that you've waited this long. When you made the decision to go with this breeder you didn't even know the breeding pair you were going to end up with, which goes against the "know the dogs your dog comes from."

There's nothing wrong with wanting a certain look. I thought I wanted a saddleback also so that everyone would know the kind of dog I had. Then I found the breeder, saw the breeding pair, and fell in love with sable, so I completely changed my mind.
 

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There is absolutley nothing wrong with having a color preference (of course temprament, health, etc are of great importance). If you want a blackLexus and the dealer only has red, white, and bllue, you will probably wait until they can get you a black one or go to another dealer.

There are people that say you should not buy according to color and I totally disagree (again reiterating health, temprament are considered a given in the search).
We all have preferences. I like you don't care for sables, I appreciate their look and get that many people love them and I respect that but my preference is black and red...and I am picky...not black and tan, not black and sliver, black and red so that is what I get when I get a puppy/dog.

I don't get bashing people for their personal preferences and unfortunately it happens on here occasionally. Get what you want, it's your dog and your money. Don't worry about what anybody else thinks. If you've waited 2.5 years it sounds to me like you've done your homework.
I agree with everything stated above. Provided you consider health, temperment, etc - there is nothing wrong with then selecting a pup in the color you also want that meets the other criteria.
 

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I don't think it's wrong to be picky. I think it's a waste of time to be overly selective & unrealistic when it comes to appearance like some are when it comes to perfect color, perfect weight, etc. and not focusing on health, temperment & overal goals for the dog/owner. Which based on what you posted is not the case. To me there's a big difference in wanting a black/red vs sable.

This is a companion you will have for 10+ years. I say wait for the next litter knowing there are no guarantees, but you are happy with the breeder or look for breeders that have current litters or litters that will be available soon. You can always post the breeders name for feedback. Good Luck-I know it's tough:)
 

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Looks should not be your sole consideration, (nor even your first consideration), but I don't think there's anything wrong with having a color or coat preference. I'm on my 2nd & 3rd LC, and I have to say that I vastly prefer them now and would probably never get a standard coat GSD again.

I realize that decreases the pool of potential pups since I'm going to be limiting my search for the kind of temperament that I want to breeders who produce the occasional LC in their litters, but that's okay with me. I know that even if I found a puppy who was perfect in every other way I would love it dearly but still always wish that it was a LC.

Funny thing, I was never a big fan of sables either until I started seeing LC sables, which is what Halo is. I thinks she's beautiful, and my appreciation for sables has definitely increased.
 

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When I went to ryanhaus, I was actually going for the new litter of pups. I was interested in a sable. My Chief was black/tan, and I was so heartbroken about losing him that I thought I wanted a dog that looked different. Then Wolfie, who was returned to ryanhaus because his new owners found they didn't have the time to take care of him properly, just attached himself to me and my husband. He was 3 months old at the time. He ignored all the puppy play and just followed us around. He would occasionally go off and play when the other dogs came over to tackle him, but he always ran right back to us. He stole my heart that afternoon, and even though I thought I wanted a sable, I ended up with my black/red baby. I never gave it another thought. The point of my story is that I think if you have your heart set on a black/red, then you should get one. However, it couldn't hurt to go meet the litter of sables. You may just find your dog, like I did.
 

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I think it's fine, but don't make it your priority. The temperament of the dog/puppy and how well it will fit in with your family should be first, THEN looks.
 

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Nothing wrong with having a color preference, provided it's not the primary consideration and more important things like health and temperament come first. I also think it important to point out here that not only should color come after health and temperament for the buyer, but for the breeder too. And to be honest, there it can get tricky.

Say you want pink, and a breeder has a litter of 6 purples and 1 pink. Is the breeder going to automatically consider that pink one sold to the person who wants pink, regardless of whether or not the pink one turns out to be a good match personality wise? And is the buyer going to automatically assume they're getting a pup in 8 weeks once they see a pink one was born, long before personality can be known? Or is the buyer going to be able to resist getting overly excited, and accept that personality might not be a match, and will the breeder put personality first and refuse to send that pink one to the person who wants a pink one if it isn't a good fit, even if it means holding onto that pup for a few extra weeks in order to find the right home that likes pink? Sadly, there are more breeders out there who will send that pink one home with the person who likes pink, even if not a good personality match, just to get the guaranteed sale. And there are a whole lot of buyers who would automatically assume they got the pink one and then will have complete hissy fits if in 8 weeks the breeder says the pink one isn't a good match, which can make breeders who do put personality first rather gunshy of even working with someone who has a strong color preference. So you've got to be extra careful.

Debbie's point on needing to realize that certain preferences restrict the pool of potential pups is also spot on. The more criteria are put into place, particularly if they are criteria that aren't often found together in the same package, the more a buyer will have to hunt and the longer the buyer will have to wait.

In this case, you say you want a DDR dog. Nothing wrong with that, but DDR dogs represent a very small subset, probably the smallest population wise, of GSDs as a whole. So by choosing that bloodline you're already eliminating the majority of the GSD population from contention. Then you want a black/tan. Nothing wrong with that either. But the majority of DDR dogs are sable, with black/tan being the least common color of all found within those lines. Someone wanting a sable DDR dog would have lots to choose from. Someone wanting a black/tan dog of show lines would have zillions to choose from. But someone wanting a dog from a less populous bloodline, and in a color that isn't very common within that bloodline, is restricting choices significantly. Again, nothing wrong with it, but limiting selection in such a way will make for more work and more time involved in finding that particular pup.
 

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Oh my gosh Debbie, I LOVE Halo! LC nor sables have ever been on my 'list' but she may have just converted me to a LC sable! lol. I looked at her dogster photo album which I didn't see any adult pics of her unless I missed them. I would love to see a recent pic of her! Can you share?
 

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I am not a fan of black/tan, black/red or white so I'll probably never own one.

I prefer blacks, dark bicolors, dark sables and red sables.
 

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Thanks for your replies everyone! I feel much better. We've done our homework :D you can trust me on that. To clear up confusion, we didn't wait 2 years working with the same breeder, we waited two years to be 100% sure of where our life was heading, make sure we have the right accommodations for the pup, and to find that breeder/dog family that we really liked.

In all honesty, I feel like if I DID get a sable, I'd still fall in love with the little guy. I loved Paula (ryanhaus) and all of her dogs. They were amazing. Temperament and health were spot on. That is my first priority. But if the looks I want is out there somewhere, I definitely want to look for it!

It is a shame that my patience is running out, otherwise I would just wait a tad bit longer. But my living situation makes it difficult to not want one now, I'm only human. I've been working from home for the last 2 years and while my fiancee is off during the day, I'm completely alone. My face to face interaction with anything living (person or dog) is very limited. Loneliness is very understated.

On another note, while writing this, I just got a call from Miles River DDR and they have a black/tan female ready in a couple weeks. Miles River is the place where Paula started a lot of her breeding, so I kind of already have an idea about the lineage and temperament and such. It is a bit of a compromise but a lot of people who posted here are right, some compromises have to be made and too many factors can really limit you. I was hoping for black/red male, but she's a black/tan female. I like that bigger bolder head on males but can't be too picky right? Going to visit next week and see how I feel.
 

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Oh my gosh Debbie, I LOVE Halo! LC nor sables have ever been on my 'list' but she may have just converted me to a LC sable! lol. I looked at her dogster photo album which I didn't see any adult pics of her unless I missed them. I would love to see a recent pic of her! Can you share?
Sorry, haven't updated her Dogster page in a LONG time! Here's one of the most recent pictures I have of her, from about a month and a half ago:



This closeup is from last April:



I wouldn't have looked twice at her if she hadn't been a LC, she would have been just another cute puppy. And I wouldn't have gone beyond just looking at her pictures if several people on the board who had met Halo when the breeder brought her to training hadn't contacted me and told me how wonderful she was and what a good fit they thought she'd be in our home. They strongly encouraged me to inquire about her, and I'm glad we did!
 

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Say you want pink, and a breeder has a litter of 6 purples and 1 pink. Is the breeder going to automatically consider that pink one sold to the person who wants pink, regardless of whether or not the pink one turns out to be a good match personality wise? And is the buyer going to automatically assume they're getting a pup in 8 weeks once they see a pink one was born, long before personality can be known? Or is the buyer going to be able to resist getting overly excited, and accept that personality might not be a match, and will the breeder put personality first and refuse to send that pink one to the person who wants a pink one if it isn't a good fit, even if it means holding onto that pup for a few extra weeks in order to find the right home that likes pink? Sadly, there are more breeders out there who will send that pink one home with the person who likes pink, even if not a good personality match, just to get the guaranteed sale. And there are a whole lot of buyers who would automatically assume they got the pink one and then will have complete hissy fits if in 8 weeks the breeder says the pink one isn't a good match, which can make breeders who do put personality first rather gunshy of even working with someone who has a strong color preference. So you've got to be extra careful.
Exactly, and I realize that by only wanting a LC, some breeders may not be interested in dealing with me for that reason, which I'm also okay with. I would absolutely want a breeder to refuse to sell me a LC pup if they didn't feel it was a good match, I'd much rather wait for the right one to come along, because personality is very important to me. I know someone who just got a LC black male who's a half sibling to Halo, and he is stunning! But OMG, I read her descriptions of him, and yikes!!! He's exactly what she wanted, but I think he'd be a nightmare for me. :help:

Restricting the pool by gender can slow down the search even further. After Dena died, a breeder I liked very much had LC males available, but no females. We love females and have always had one - Keefer is our first male. So I passed, even though they sounded wonderful and either of them would probably have fit in very well. I didn't want two males and my hubby really wanted a girl of his own again. A little while later she had a female available who was gorgeous and her personality sounded great, but was not a LC. I was very, very tempted, but again, we passed.
 

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She's very pretty, thanks for taking the time to post the pics. It's kind of hard to tell she sable except for her front, though the backpack hides part of her.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
So off topic question, I know this had been asked a billion times everywhere, but what do you think of the age old male vs female question? I know it depends on the individual dog, but does anyone have experience with a female in this situation: I want a dog to be clingy - well, because I'm alone 90% of my waking life. I have high hopes of doing advanced obedience training as well. I know males tend to be more clingy and females more independent, but if bonding with me (along with socialization and all that jazz) is most of what a female knows, do you think it has a high chance of having that more clingy nature? Or is it really embedded in females to be more independent on average.
 

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I heard male dogs tend to be more attached to female owners and female dogs tend to be more attached to male owners.
 

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It's kind of hard to tell she sable except for her front, though the backpack hides part of her.
How about this one after a hard day chasing balls at the park? :D

 
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