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Discussion Starter #1
I have a 2.5 y/o bitch that I raised as the foundation for my lines. I showed her through her grand champion, spent countless hours on conditioning, play, training, showing, and exercise... hundreds of dollars on grooming, a thousand on showing, probably tens of thousands in upkeep costs for the past few years.
I fell in love with everything about her the moment she put her head on my knee and I watched her grow up from day three.
At two years we did our OFAs and passed elbows but failed hips. I was devastated. Her breeder encouraged me to try again when she was further out of heat and use a digital x-ray, so I did. While I had my other dog in for an orthopedic consult with Dr. Milton in Birmingham today I had her done, although I was sure I knew what we would find. Failed again. Severely dysplastic at 2.5 years. I raised her exactly as I was told. No running on pavement, no jumping on or off the couch or bed, no jogging/biking for long distances till she was 14 months old. Appropriate calcium and vitamins and protein.
On Wednesday she will be spayed. On Wednesday I call UKC and have her switched to Altered. On Wednesday all my hopes and dreams and hard work and love are worth nothing, and I have to start again.

The stud dog I was given by the same breeder has a 'rare' type of pano that has persisted in a single joint for 7 months, one excellent hip, and one fair to poor hip. He's 10 months old. I'm furious with my breeder, so hurt by this breed and all its health problems.

I wanted to be a breeder to improve the breed. At this moment I feel like there is no way to do so. I have one out of four dogs that is even a candidate, and she's too young to OFA. I detest the breeder that sold me these dogs and I detest the fact that I trusted her instead of doing deeper digging. I'm disgusted that I returned to her for another dog and that she was the mentor I chose. She bred a bitch that she KNEW failed OFA and lied to me about it (the dam of this bitch). She bred an underage stud before testing because 'both parents were excellent' (sire to my male with pano) who turned out to be severe dysplastic when tested. So did his littermate, who was neutered.

I have a contract on the bitch but the dog was free without contract because she wanted to keep the line but not the dog. I do NOT want another dog from her as replacement as listed in the contract, but I doubt I'll get my money back.

Right now I'm ready to give up on German Shepherds. If my third bitch (totally different lines, totally different breeder) has bad hips I don't know what I'll do.

I'm still trying to decide what to do with these animals. The bitch was my first and I am not willing to give her up. The dog may squeak by OFA at 2 years but would I feel right breeding him? No. He's gorgeous, he'll have a fantastic show career once the pano resolves. But what for? I can't use him as a stud, not without a guilty conscience. I know what it feels like as a puppy buyer, I refuse to do that to mine. The other bitch might well be fine. I'll take her into work tomorrow and do a prelim x-ray. If she's already showing signs, she's going straight back to her breeder too.

I'm crushed. I'm upset. I'm not thinking rationally. But Black Russian Terriers or Beaucerons are looking mighty good right now. I don't think I can take much more bad news about my dogs at the moment.
 

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I'm so sorry to read this. I can only imagine the disappointment and betrayal you must be feeling.

I don't have any advice or constructive suggestions to offer. I don't know the first thing about breeding. But you have great sympathies from this stranger on the Internet, at least. :/
 

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1) Get a long, good night's sleep.

2) Don't give up on your darlings, despite their ailments. You didn't once mention their personalities. I'll tell ya my girl has personality. That's her most valuable asset. She also just happens to come from a champion, even BIS but that's only secondary, far down in importance.

3) Your breeder was responsible. Allow her to correct it for you. Seems to me she was willing to replace your dogs. Most people want to do the right thing if you allow them. I wouldn't spend another penny though.

4) Get GSDs or any dog for that matter because you enjoy them by themselves, not because of show accomplishments. In the end, it's just a piece of paper that reflects on the dog, NOT the dog is reflected by that piece of paper.
 

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Sorry your having all these issues with the dogs, I'm sure it's devastating.

I have had gsd's my entire life, over 50 years, never had bad hips or elbows.

If I ever have that misfortune, I wouldn't blame it on the breeder unless they knowingly sold you a dog with bad hips without disclosure. No one can predict the outcome of a puppy / health wise.

They are living beings, it's not their fault either:(
 

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Discussion Starter #5
1) Get a long, good night's sleep.

2) Don't give up on your darlings, despite their ailments. You didn't once mention their personalities. I'll tell ya my girl has personality. That's her most valuable asset. She also just happens to come from a champion, even BIS but that's only secondary, far down in importance.

3) Your breeder was responsible. Allow her to correct it for you. Seems to me she was willing to replace your dogs. Most people want to do the right thing if you allow them. I wouldn't spend another penny though.

4) Get GSDs or any dog for that matter because you enjoy them by themselves, not because of show accomplishments. In the end, it's just a piece of paper that reflects on the dog, NOT the dog is reflected by that piece of paper.
1) Agreed!

2) My problem is that they all have fantastic personalities. They're my children. How breeders can let go of their kids at 2 years is the mystery to me. If they didn't, they'd quickly have more 'pet' dogs than anything else and I know that... My inclination is to keep them all because I'm so attached. Trust me, I'm fighting hard here. Trying to make a 'responsible' decision and the 'emotional' one I want to make.

3) She is and isn't. She's handling this situation well, but the choices she made with her breeding were irresponsible in my eyes because she advertises as a breeder who health tests every animal and only breeds her dogs that have successfully passed all tests. She repeatedly lied and withheld information about the breedings. She just had another bitch whelp unexpectedly and she does not know who the sire was because the bitch was allowed to play with two males. That isn't responsible to me. She gave me the male way before this all went down because she wanted to keep her lines but didn't want to deal with another stud dog, which I understand. Our agreement on him was verbal. I own him but she has breeding rights in addition to me. All costs fall to me.

4) Again, totally right. Remember, I'm only typing out the relevant parts of why I'm in the predicament I'm in here. I didn't mention that my kids are excellent lurecoursing dogs, or do super well in rally, flyball, and dock diving. I didn't mention that the bitch in question has such a perfect personality that I've converted non-dog people to dog people with her. I can trust her off-leash anywhere, she has an infallible recall, and her attentiveness to me is unmatched. However. Just because she is all those things does NOT mean I should breed her. That's how irresponsible breeding happens. "I have such a perfect dog, I want to have puppies!" How often do we have threads like that here? What do we always say to those people?
Paper isn't everything, but it MATTERS. Registries matter, bloodlines matter, performance matters. That's the point of improving the breed.

I LOVE the GSD, but it's a painful breed for me right now. There are other breeds that have similar qualities. I'll always have a GSD in my life, I know that. It's unavoidable, they're too awesome. But I have a passion for showing, training, and breeding that I've been nurturing since I was a child. It will not go away. And if I don't believe that I can help the German Shepherd Dog become better I will not encourage it to become worse by breeding dogs I don't back 100% and who are proven by judges in many different venues.
Case in point: the sire of my dog and his littermates were out of 'excellent' rated parents. What happened? We don't know... maybe one generation back, maybe five. Maybe it was lurking even farther back. That's terrifying! Right now I feel like I won't ever be able to trust that what I'm breeding doesn't have the same quirk.
 

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1) Agreed!

2) My problem is that they all have fantastic personalities. They're my children. How breeders can let go of their kids at 2 years is the mystery to me. If they didn't, they'd quickly have more 'pet' dogs than anything else and I know that... My inclination is to keep them all because I'm so attached. Trust me, I'm fighting hard here. Trying to make a 'responsible' decision and the 'emotional' one I want to make.

3) She is and isn't. She's handling this situation well, but the choices she made with her breeding were irresponsible in my eyes because she advertises as a breeder who health tests every animal and only breeds her dogs that have successfully passed all tests. She repeatedly lied and withheld information about the breedings. She just had another bitch whelp unexpectedly and she does not know who the sire was because the bitch was allowed to play with two males. That isn't responsible to me. She gave me the male way before this all went down because she wanted to keep her lines but didn't want to deal with another stud dog, which I understand. Our agreement on him was verbal. I own him but she has breeding rights in addition to me. All costs fall to me.

4) Again, totally right. Remember, I'm only typing out the relevant parts of why I'm in the predicament I'm in here. I didn't mention that my kids are excellent lurecoursing dogs, or do super well in rally, flyball, and dock diving. I didn't mention that the bitch in question has such a perfect personality that I've converted non-dog people to dog people with her. I can trust her off-leash anywhere, she has an infallible recall, and her attentiveness to me is unmatched. However. Just because she is all those things does NOT mean I should breed her. That's how irresponsible breeding happens. "I have such a perfect dog, I want to have puppies!" How often do we have threads like that here? What do we always say to those people?
Paper isn't everything, but it MATTERS. Registries matter, bloodlines matter, performance matters. That's the point of improving the breed.

I LOVE the GSD, but it's a painful breed for me right now. There are other breeds that have similar qualities. I'll always have a GSD in my life, I know that. It's unavoidable, they're too awesome. But I have a passion for showing, training, and breeding that I've been nurturing since I was a child. It will not go away. And if I don't believe that I can help the German Shepherd Dog become better I will not encourage it to become worse by breeding dogs I don't back 100% and who are proven by judges in many different venues.
Case in point: the sire of my dog and his littermates were out of 'excellent' rated parents. What happened? We don't know... maybe one generation back, maybe five. Maybe it was lurking even farther back. That's terrifying! Right now I feel like I won't ever be able to trust that what I'm breeding doesn't have the same quirk.
You're a great mom. You're responsible. They have tremendous personalities. They are great kids. They also have a couple of health problems.

Seems to me this is manageable.
 

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I'm so sorry for you and your dogs.....they don't know that they have failed and still will love you and deserve your continued love and concern...

NO ONE breeds to get HD on purpose....they may be kennel blind, they may be in denial at results...but they don't purposefully intentionally try for HD! You can be angry at them for their lack of objectivity, and I certainly would be...but I really don't think they intended this to happen. That anyone would deny an OFA rating and go ahead and breed is very irresponsible - but I have seen it happen and the owner rant and rave that the dog is fine and OFA is wrong (5 or 6 years ago, not a ASL breeder)

You need to back up and look at what is best for your dogs. I personally would "wash out" the male pup, and place him in a pet home where he will be neutered - why campaign him to a championship if his genetics are that poor for hips...do not give more credence to his bloodlines and kennel of origin. Spay your 2.5 year old, and enjoy her as you obviously love her.

Get your other two pre-lim'ed.....start over with one of those if her hips are good and study the pedigrees on teh ones that are not good and try to avoid those families and combinations.

I know it is disappointing, but the dogs still need the attention and love they are accustomed to having.

Lee
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I'm so sorry for you and your dogs.....they don't know that they have failed and still will love you and deserve your continued love and concern...

NO ONE breeds to get HD on purpose....they may be kennel blind, they may be in denial at results...but they don't purposefully intentionally try for HD! You can be angry at them for their lack of objectivity, and I certainly would be...but I really don't think they intended this to happen. That anyone would deny an OFA rating and go ahead and breed is very irresponsible - but I have seen it happen and the owner rant and rave that the dog is fine and OFA is wrong (5 or 6 years ago, not a ASL breeder)

You need to back up and look at what is best for your dogs. I personally would "wash out" the male pup, and place him in a pet home where he will be neutered - why campaign him to a championship if his genetics are that poor for hips...do not give more credence to his bloodlines and kennel of origin. Spay your 2.5 year old, and enjoy her as you obviously love her.

Get your other two pre-lim'ed.....start over with one of those if her hips are good and study the pedigrees on teh ones that are not good and try to avoid those families and combinations.

I know it is disappointing, but the dogs still need the attention and love they are accustomed to having.

Lee
Absolutely. You said it so well. Thank you for your kind words... I didn't know what I was looking for when I posted this, just that I needed to share. I felt like I couldn't share at my kennel club because my breeder is the president; I don't want to drag out my dirty laundry in front of everybody. But it does make it hard to find folks to talk to about this.

I do need to keep that in mind. She wasn't aiming to breed bad hips; it happens and she is just having difficulty taking responsibility for it. I know I should feel bad for her too; two of her three lines now produce HD. She must be struggling as well. I know I need to remember that.

Thank you.
 

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Do you want to look at the pedigree and see what the depth for good hips is.

If the other two are related to the ones who had such bad hip results , because what you are saying the stud and his littermate were both severely dysplastic, then do not breed them because the odds are stacked against you .

terrible situation . prelims can be done as early as 9 months and used as a guideline , then you go back and get OFA .
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Good news! I was so upset about the two shepherds I "lost" from my breeding program that I took my other bitch into work and snapped a quick x-ray, no sedation or anything. Had all the doctors at the practice take a look; they all rated her 'excellent'! PHEW! So grateful and relieved.

The bitch was spayed today, she's home and groggy. She did well in surgery and we took care of her umbilical hernia at the same time. The owner of the practice did the sx, and she said that my girl who it is near impossible to put weight on keeps all her fat INSIDE! It was actually quite interesting! She has a very fatty gut.

Anyway, just some 'good news'. Thanks for all y'all's support and help. :)
 

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Chris it sucks.... but Lee said it the best above. I have quite a few washouts lounging on the couches here. No ones "fault." They are what they are.
You are young and have plenty of time ahead of you. Train, compete, learn.... and cross your fingers. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #13
....and glad to hear "pano." Sounds like your visit to Milton was worth it.
It absolutely was... he was so fantastic! He was interested in the case, so I got everything for a ridiculously low price. We go back in 2 months for follow-up x-rays. I am recommending everyone I know to Milton now.
 

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Is the female that x-rayed clean today related closely to the one that you spayed???

I don't know much about ASL lines.....but I would look for similarities and what to avoid closely...

Lee
 

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My breeder and I have spoke at length about what she looks for in breeding prospects. When she holds one back as a future breeding prospect she will prelim as early as 16 weeks to see what she is working with before she invests the next two years into developing the dog. It also helps her keep an eye on what her program is producing. She also strongly implores her puppy buyers to eventually have all hips Scored by OFA or PennHip and to keep her informed as to what they have.
 

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Pennhip can be done at 16 weeks of age. And preliminary OFA can be done at a year. As well, the OFA database can be searched online.

Its a hard lesson learned. Find a good breeder to mentor you. Dont take their word for it, see OFA results for yourself. Study the lines, contact other owners. Do preliminary hip tests so it's not a complete shock at 2 years of age.

Live and learn. Sorry, but at least you are doing the right thing by not breeding now :(

Sent from Petguide.com Free App
 

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Are you giving your dog with pano Albon? You can knock out pano with albon. I heard this from a breeder friend, and was skeptical, but then I also was prescribed a pill-form of albon for a dog with pano.

sorry you are having so much trouble with pups. Sometimes it is best to get an adult to start your program with. That way, you can assess adult temperament and have the major health concerns tested for prior to putting your money down.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Is the female that x-rayed clean today related closely to the one that you spayed???
There's one Tindrock bitch that is something like a second cousin about four generations back on both, but nothing else shallower.

I've decided to place the male in a pet home. He'll be going to a spectacular family that has two other dogs from this breeder, the male's sister and an older male that has already been neutered after HD diagnosis. They know whats going on with him and just want another pet GSD. I feel confident that he'll enjoy an excellent life on their 100+ acre farm... way more fun than he has here, haha!

I know I probably should have started with adults, but I stupidly let ONE bad experience prevent me from making that decision. The rescue I kept I got at 14 months and he is INSANE. All problems that could have been completely avoided with early socialization. I told myself that I wanted the control of development that comes with getting a puppy.
I didn't stop and think logically that there were plenty of adults who are just fine and not insane. After all, Red was from a puppy mill bust... any breeder I'm working with would not treat their animals the way he must have been treated.

I'm talking with a few folks about young adult dogs now. I'm bolstered by the fact that I have one dog with excellent (so far!) hips; I need to just find the right lines and right breeders to work with.
 

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What was the deal with the pano? What made it different?
The reason Dr. Milton was so interested is because it's non-traveling. It appears to be limited to the right fore. The x-rays show that the left fore looks like it was affected at some point and has healed, but he never limped.
He also does not get fevers, is stoic enough that he does not appear to be painful (or he isn't painful), he has not had an appetite component or any other clinical signs. But the three week recurrence cycle and the x-rays all point to pano.

He gave us an up-to-two-year timeline on it. He says the worst case he's seen was in a male GSD who took three years to get over it, but it completely resolved. Fingers crossed... even though I'm placing this male I'll keep close tabs on him.

selzer, I never knew Albon was used to treat pano! I'll ask at the office and see what we can scrounge up. Thanks! :)
 
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