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Discussion Starter #1
Hi all. I want to become a great GSD breeder. I, of course, need your help. Pros and cons, I'm open and willing to listen. First, a little background on my situation.

I bought my female GSD from a reputable breeder. She had talked in the past about showing me the 'ropes'. I'm going to learn as much from her as I can. I'm also going to try getting my girl a title, or at least trying, because she's very smart and quick learner. Great temperament. She'll be 2 in February, and we'll be getting hips certified, blood tests, etc. I will also be offering lifetime return for my pups to new owners.

So, I have a couple questions, please.

1. What goes into getting my un-spayed GSD in an event, etc? Do I have to cancel taking her if she goes into estrus? (I only ask that because she went into estrus late this cycle, by 2 months).

2. Please list good links or references for all things breeding/competing/training my GSD. (She has basic obedience down.) Books are great too, if you know of any.

3. Where can I find a good contract and questionnaire/interview for the new owners.

4. I've been looking at information at dogbreedinfo.com, is that a good and reliable place?

I know from reading other posts some of you are a little more 'in your face' with wake up calls and others are more relaxed, but I honestly (and kindly) ask for it all.

I am still not 100 percent sure I will need her, and if course it depends on what the tests say, but if all that's good, I would like to try my hand at bettering the breed. I know it's lots of work, and when I am interested in something, I study and research lots.

Thank you for your time.

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If no one new studies, trains, shows,and tests their dog,and then decides to breed,at some point there won't be any reputable breeders. In my opinion if someone does something well,and correct more power to them.
 

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what do you know to this point?

your opening question revolves around the mechanics, optics and sales points of breeding.

what do you know about the breed, the history, the pillar dogs, the splits and whys and where fors -- genetics --

what are your goals , what is your target and how do you plan to test your proximity to that goal

are you willing to have a critical eye , dead-end a line , keep a line or branch going to keep fine tuning it

are you willing and able to care for what you have produced
willing to accept animals that are returned , able to keep animals until the perfect place comes along

working dogs -- you need to get out there and work dogs , not just one , not just one discipline

you need to go out and watch and learn
 

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forgot to say , hi and welcome .

so again to your question . look to this forum not only for direct response to you but to the hundreds of people that come on with behavioural problems , health problems , training , feeding , and GSD in general .

invaluable opportunity to be involved at a distance

books -- The German Shepherd Dog -- B Wootton

Sue Barwig - encyclopedic [ame]http://www.amazon.com/German-Shepherd-Book-First-Edition/dp/9995498251/ref=pd_sim_b_4[/ame] --- very good because she covers all types all countries
 

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no public library has them to lend out -- the "pet" section tends to be abysmally poor -- pop
if you want to be serious about breeding you have to make an investment of your time, financial resources, interest and involvement .
there is no other way.
 

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are you kidding -- I lent my copy out and had to replace it 3 times -- seriously --- I finally got a copy that will never leave my shelves . Malcolm Willis was kind enough to put a private message in advising never to lend the book out again - autographed with good wishes

most specialty books are obscure .

Recommending this book - The Thinking Dog-Crossover to Clicker Training by Gail Tamases Fisher

that won't be available at a library
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Thank you all, for the links, and information. You all pose some great questions. How does one go about getting my dog in events (like trials or what-not)? I have a wonderful lady who I plan to have as my mentor if she'll have me. I have raised one litter of puppies before (long story, and not with this dog), and I am 100 percent willing and ready to accept all returns.

It's there anything special that needs to be done to make sure law enforcement can use my pups?

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are you kidding -- I lent my copy out and had to replace it 3 times -- seriously --- I finally got a copy that will never leave my shelves . Malcolm Willis was kind enough to put a private message in advising never to lend the book out again - autographed with good wishes

most specialty books are obscure .

Recommending this book - The Thinking Dog-Crossover to Clicker Training by Gail Tamases Fisher

that won't be available at a library
As soon as I feel better will see if I can find any of these at the library...:)
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Temperament - she listens, almost always with the first verbal command. We have 4 children, another dog (American Bulldog, neutered, male), and two cats. Our daughter, who is now two, has climbed, laid on, pulled, pushed etc on our GSD since we got her at 8 weeks, and our GSD has always been very good with the children. She has never bitten or tried to bite anyone, except in defense of her life (long story), and it was a fluke thing, mostly my and the other dog's fault.

She loves to learn new things, and usually does so within the first training session on simple things, and seems to remember them with no reminders to do them forever (it's been a year on one 'trick').

She never barks in the house, she does bark at people who get close to our yard, though, and dogs who do the same.

She will not accept food from strangers outside, even if they are with someone she knows and likes.

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I started with the same goal 8 yrs ago. I first decided I wanted a dog I could title in Schutzhund. I then searched (about 6 months) for the right breeder of that dog. Having had a boyfriend that had owned a black GSD, I had decided that was the color I wanted as well. I got the total package with Yoko. Before I could be approved by the breeder to purchase Yoko, I had to find a trainer I was going to work with. Sent out a couple emails and was recommended to a couple. Did research on those individuals and picked the one I wanted to train with. Spent the next two years going to private lessons, group lessons, fun matches, etc. Yoko certainly proved herself to be breed worthy in the obedience ring. Yes, that is correct, we do AKC obedience. I had not done Schutzhund training with her. The trainer and I talked and thought that would be the best route for us, since I had never trained a dog before.

My trainer owns GSD's, titles GSD',s and has put an OTCH on one of her dogs. She is right now working toward an OTCH with her Schutzhund male. She is my greatest asset for our success in the obedience ring. She has been there, done that. Her trainer is one of the top trainers in the country.

When Yoko became of age, I did OFA's on hips/elbows. Did CERF (twice now), and also Cardiac testing. She was titled with her novice title in three trials. She is always in the ribbons and placed in the top 10 ranking for GSD's in 2008 and 2009. She was placed with me on limited registration and that was lifted with the health testing and title. We were now ready.

Breeding her was my original goal, but it was a long road to getting there. Was she a good representation of her breed? She was now almost three. My trainers male having being titled and health tested might be a good match. Spent about two months researching pedigrees and asking input from others on the match of the two dogs. We decided to go for it.

I have whelped litters before and have worked in animal hospitals so have experience in that area. I felt confident with myself that I could handle the whelping process. She delivered 8 pups, 7 survived. One black female was born with an open abdomen, so she didnt make it. That is all part of breeding.

I had help from friends to place the pups. I also have in my contract that I have first right to refusal if they need to be rehomed. One of the pups was placed with the friend of a friend (were supposed to get a pup from another breeding that didnt take). That male pup ending up having to be rehomed, but the friend took care of that. That pup ended up with a transitional vertebra and had to be rehomed again. Working K9 now, great placement, but I did not have great contact infor for placing him, some one else did. Very thankful for that. At two years old, had a male come back to me because he was not control able. (Had been placed with original owners parents). My house was crazy at that time with this male that couldnt be let out with the puppies I currently had because he would attack him. After two months, I drove him 600 miles to get him to a trainer to place him with a police dept. Now I had surgery and still had puppies from the second litter and no homes and unable to do anything with them. Advertising is not my forte. Now down to mom and one pup (who is now 1 yr old). And yet another pup from my first litter coming back as a 3 yr old. Again, uncontrollable and aggressive. Buyers just dont seem to listen to you when you tell them they need training. Now I have three bitches in my small house, and have to work at integrating the one and crate rotate. Things going okay, her mother and her want to kill eachother but her and her half sister want to play and as long as the aggressive one is leashed we are good. Notice some health issues with older pup. Save (working two jobs now just to pay for the dogs, so not much free time) up money for health testing. I know dogs can be placed in better homes with health testing. Spend almost $1,000 just getting allergy testing, hips, elbows, patellas, dentition, thyroid done. She came back totally healthy and very happy for that. Made another contact in the dog world by this time and took her an hour away for an eval by this person. He was able to place her with a breeder. Now she has an inverted vulva, of course we didnt know that. Person that originally took her spent a lot of money to try to breed her and it didnt take. She was adjusting well and he had to place her into another home, she is doing very well.

Third litter. Trying AI with male several states away. Got one puppy. Certainly doesnt cover the expense of progesterone testing and AI or the c-section for one pup. Good thing I have been working two jobs to pay for all this.

She is in heat now and going to try AI again. Same male. Hopefully this time we do better and I can get my female out of her to keep. This will most likely be her last litter. I must be crazy!!

 

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'How does one go about getting my dog in events (like trials or what-not)?"
What is your area of interest --- JOIN -
prepare , then with your cheering section supporting you , go and compete
"I have a wonderful lady who I plan to have as my mentor if she'll have me." hope she knows her stuff
 

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I'm not a breeder, nor do I plan to be. I think you've been given some good advice so far, but I know one thing a horse breeder told me (and she is one of the most successful warmblood breeders in the US), is not to be 'barn blind'. Her words 'cull, cull, cull your broodmares'

In other words, you have to take a hard look at what you have in front of you and even though they can be lovely animals as individuals, if they are not producing, you need to stop breeding them and/or rehome them. This is surprisingly difficult for a lot of people.

I also agree with it being an absolute necessity to put titles on your breeding stock. I think being dedicated to working with your dogs gives you much needed depth of knowledge as to what strengths and weaknesses they have.

Then you need to learn about the bloodlines, what they contribute to the gene pool, and this takes years and years of seeing dogs work and handling all kinds of dogs.

It's an ambitious goal, but an important one, so I hope you will pursue it with the guidance of a good breeder.
 

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How does one go about getting my dog in events (like trials or what-not)?
Like Carmen said, it depends what you want to do. What's your area of interest? What sports are you drawn toward? What is your dog meant to do? If you have a (good) potential breeding prospect, then your breeder probably has some definite opinions about where your dog ought to excel.
 
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