German Shepherds Forum banner

1 - 20 of 127 Posts

·
Banned
Joined
·
4,417 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Thought this might be a good discussion since I've come up against this wall so much lately.....it gets a little frustrating. The mods say this site is for everyone - but sometimes there is a great wall separation by what is best and what is affordable by the new pet owners..... the advise given can be unattainable by the person asking for help.

The have's

1. Buy from the best breeders, recommended lines, imported or transported from across state, lengthy waiting for litters, network of who's who in the GSD world, knowledgeable with GSD's, bloodlines & breeders.

2. Able to afford the best food/diet. Professional trainers are used. Grooming toward target Show/Sport/Ring planned and finances are available.

3. Best vet care, exercise and training regimen established and prepared.

4. Titling and certification planned and knowledge of requirements are known.

Then you have the pet world; sometimes the have not's....

1. Average/low income - want a great pup but the prices are sky high. People that pay that much are only doing it for status or serious competitive show/work to get titles. We don't want/need that! We just want a pet.

2. Has seen GSD's on TV - the best of the best - but knows it's a different world for him and looks to what's available locally at a price that he can afford.

3. Has little to no knowledge about health, bloodlines or best food, but he knows in his life he has experienced some great GSD's locally raised as have his friends in his community and they did great with "regular food" and litters from local folks. At local reasonable prices.

4. Vet bills? No way a dog vet bill would be $2-$3 thousand dollars for tests??? Maybe even then no diagnosis?? Pet Insurance? No one I ever knew had that! We'll use the old remedies that have worked for generations on dogs, cats, farm animals.

Want a GSD - look for "responsible breeders" with "health checks". "Beware of BYB's!!!" "If you pay less than $1,500 for your GSD - it's from a BYB!" If you can't afford the vet bills - GSD's are expensive dogs to upkeep - Don't get one!" "If you don't title your dog and know about bloodlines - don't breed it".

And they compare their reality with yours - and there are no matches. They know their friends and family decades back had a pet GSD from a local litter that was awesome, ate "regular store food" and the pup was not expensive to buy from a local family.

Just pointing out the disparity - the help asked, the advise offered and the judgment given when excited JQP comes here to announce proudly he has a new GSD puppy and has a couple of questions......
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
16,941 Posts
I think most people are open to learning and getting educated. One doesn't have to be stuck in only one way of thinking. I think it is extremely limiting to say that that having a good GSD is out of reach for most people, and the way you present the "elite" is offensive.

Most of us started off as pet dog owners, and as we learned more, set specific personal goals for our dogs. Seriously Stone, I saved up for two years to buy a dog from a good breeder, and I drive a 2004 van, just to show you how I set my priorities; I find your reasoning and thought process offensive that I'm a rich snob for having an expensive dog and doing IPO. (Because rich people take two years to save up a couple of thousand dollars, right?)


What you feel is unatainable, some of us worked our buts off to attain. How about giving people some credit for being open to learning about the GSD lines, breeding, BYB vs. good breeder. How about giving people some credit for finding a new passion and pursuing it, be it IPO, SAR, or other working or performance venue. If you choose a different path for dog ownership, fine - we all wish you health and happiness, but don't dump on those that chose a different path for their dogs and their level of dog involvement.

How about some credit for wanting to help others make knowledgeable, informed decisions about getting a dog? Lumping people into a have and have-not category is ridiculous.

There was a time when I thought that anyone who paid money for a pure-bred papered dog was a snob, LOL! Guess what? I knew beans!! I understand so much more about the dog world now, and can respect different views and values. We are all on a journey, and seeing our journey though only the filter of money is very self-limiting.

If people come on this board, I'm assuming they are not average dog owners, they are above average because they want to read and learn about GSDs, so bring on the breeding, training, historical, ethical discussions!
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
4,417 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
I think most people are open to learning and getting educated. One doesn't have to be stuck in only one way of thinking. I think it is extremely limiting to say that that having a good GSD is out of reach for most people, and the way you present the "elite" is offensive.

Most of us started off as pet dog owners, and as we learned more, set specific personal goals for our dogs. Seriously Stone, I saved up for two years to buy a dog from a good breeder, and drive a 2004 van; I find your reasoning and thought process offensive that I'm a rich snob for having an expensive dog and doing IPO. (Because rich people take two years to save up a couple of thousand dollars, right?)


What you feel is unatainable, some of us worked our buts off to attain. How about giving people some credit for being open to learning about the GSD lines, breeding, BYB vs. good breeder. How about giving people some credit for finding a new passion and pursuing it, be it IPO, SAR, or other working or performance venue. If you choose a different path for dog ownership, fine - we all wish you health and happiness, but don't dump on those that chose a different path for their dogs and their level of dog involvement.

How about some credit for wanting to help others make knowledgeable, informed decisions about getting a dog? Lumping people into a have and have-not category is ridiculous.

There was a time when I thought that anyone who paid money for a pure-bred papered dog was a snob, LOL! Guess what? I knew beans!! I understand so much more about the dog world now, and can respect different views and values. We are all on a journey, and seeing our journey though only the filter of money is very self-limiting.

If people come on this board, I'm assuming they are not average dog owners, they are above average because they want to read and learn about GSDs, so bring on the breeding, training, historical, ethical discussions!
Where did the word snob come in? lol You saved up for two years and drive a 2004 car. What that is explaining to me is that you are outside of the norm I am talking about. You are the exception and that word means no guesses as to it's intent.

I'm actually glad I got your ire up because that will help me explain a little further....

I am a pet owner. I purchased from what I was told was a BYB when I first asked for an explanation of the AKC paperwork. Although I have owned 5 GSD's. I have always raised them in the old ways and just has my family and neighbors have always done.

There is a best way and a way that still works. If you can afford the best way - outstanding - I would do nothing but if I could.

What I am trying to address, and I don't have the answer for; is when newbies come to this site and post for the first time and need help.

Recommendations are given and very good ones for the most part But, there is a line that the person that cannot afford the recommended trainers, diet or vet care, tests, titling, etc and everything suggested to him just cannot do. It has never been my experience that people that are financially challenged will immediately volunteer and say "Woaah!" I only have 40 dollars a month to spend on my dog..... They just don't. They're either gone or they try another way to get answers and that gets frustrating for the people who posted to help because they think the newbie is discounting their recommendations.

THIS is the end I'm hitting at - not everyone can do best recommendations for their pup/dog or is able to make it a #1 priority in their life as much as they would personally want to. Do you ever see someone asking for help here just sort of fading out of the conversation - I think many of them are not able to afford what should be done and so they're gone.....

How people can and will deal with their dogs has a financial basis... that is my point - and those that gave all just to get the best are the exception and not the norm. The "masses" in need are different and come from all SES.

This site has a wealth of information - but it can be better. Pet people with GSD's that may not be feeding anything but what they can afford at the grocery store or not a lot of vet tests or not a trainer won't be forthcoming with that information.... but it's there and there are hundreds of thousands of them.....
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
4,417 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
If people come on this board, I'm assuming they are not average dog owners, they are above average because they want to read and learn about GSDs, so bring on the breeding, training, historical, ethical discussions!
I am just the average dog owner. However, this is the last dog I will own before I die. This is the first one that I have so much time with as I am retired. I, for the first time in my life - have time..... but no money. Lots of great suggestions here every time I post for help but I can't do most of the recommended things for my girl and it makes me sick because I do read everything here and see how much she's missing.

It's a two edged sword but that's the way it is and the way it is for a lot of GSD owners. This site has a few active posters but a huge, huge following on views. Have you ever asked why that is?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,726 Posts
I've been on both sides of the coin.

I'm no where near rich, but I have a healthy "dog budget" thanks to sacrifices elsewhere in life. I currently spend several hundred dollars a month for dog food. I am training in both agility and IPO.

My current GSD is an oops. Half BYB have WL. He cost less then dinner and drinks at outback. I'm planning to get another GSD in the next 2 years and will be getting one from a 'good' breeder. Probably will have it shipped.

8 years ago I was homeless and lived in my car with the dogs for a while. Then I had to struggle to get back on my feet. They didn't go to the vet. They ate cheap. I'm sure I would have been told to Rehome them. But whatev. Those poor neglected dogs? One passed away last year at the age of 14 and the other just celebrated his 17th birthday and is asleep at my feet.

You do what you can. *shrug*
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
142 Posts
My Judith is from a BYB but I don't care, I love her. I give her the same chance as your 2000 dollar German shepherd, paying good money for Schutzhund training, and she will do trials as a mix. She gets the best food I can find with research I've done, and she will be taken to the vet if anything is wrong with her, as well as for yearly checkup. Knowing what I do, would I rather have got one from a reputable breeder? Of course, but my Judith will have the best life of a GSD from a BYB she possibly can, and be able to learn protection, and live as long and as healthy of a life as any GSD with a pedigree.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
14,021 Posts
I don't know where any of mine are from. Every time I talked to the breeder and made plans to go that route, a GSD popped up that needed help. This happened with both Midnite and Apollo. The breeder understood and we laughed about how I wasn't meant to get a dog from a breeder yet. I wouldn't change that and I have no problem rescuing in the future. I have a dog(another breed-non GSD) that came from a breeder with all the titles and health stuff--that dog costed me $15,000.00 for his hips. Health can't be guaranteed by anyone. I'm not the type of person that will save for a dog. I get what I get and work with that. It has worked well for me.

I am certainly not rich, but my dogs are taken care of. I'm very thankful that I had experience working at a vet as a vet tech because that experience helps me all the time as far as illnesses, what to look for or if a vet visit is even needed. I've also found that you can save on vet visits by doing other stuff better. For example, a better diet might cost more, but it cuts down on vet visits. Grooming is done at home. I purchased the dryer and the initial investment paid for itself after one bath for all the dogs. I bought all the agility equipment, which again was a huge investment but I have 6 dogs that enjoy that. I took classes with one dog and I was able to learn how to teach the rest. That agility equipment will last forever. If you figure $150 for each class and I do a min of 6 classes with each dog, my equipment paid for itself. Swimming--dogs love it. You can't trust lakes and ponds with algae and stuff, taking them swimming is $60 for one dog and 1/2 hour. I bought a pool, paid for itself the first year. I have 7 dogs that love to swim.

I think training should be a cost that people set aside. I'm a big believer that the first year should be filled with obedience and I make it a point that each dog goes to at least 3-4 classes. It is something I feel is necessary and always suggest it to new owners.

Limit vaccines--research and give what is necessary, do not over vaccinate. That can cause problems down the line and it's not cost effective. My dogs now get rabies only every 3 yrs-$70 every three yrs for vaccines.

There are definitley things that can be done to save money. Some stuff might be an initial investment but you have to look at the big picture.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
2,316 Posts
Lumping people into a have and have-not category is ridiculous.
I agree with Castlemaid's statement.

This site is its own example. Membership is free. Thousands of pages of information and history is free. A discerning careful reader can find lots of valuable information here without spending a single cent. There are threads that frequently discuss best value per pound for food quality, online vet med ordering options to save money, resources with good prices, where to shop, and how to build-your-own equipment. All... Free.

There's nothing wrong with expensive wants and desires. If you want something specific and wonderful, you can save, you can choose to prioritize. Or you can choose a less expensive option. There is nothing wrong with either choice, but it is certainly not a black and white divide.

If you're truly interested in bridging a "gap", it would be far more helpful to start a thread, name it "Tips and Tricks for Saving Money, Raising a Healthy Sound GSD". Now there's an idea! Perhaps consider doing this, instead of drawing a line in the sand between haves and have-nots.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
375 Posts
Gosh, I can't believe none of us has ever noticed "economic disparity" before Stonevintage had the courage and astute thinking to reveal it! The unfairness of what the Haves have and what the Have-nots haven't is . . . unfair! Not until now did any of us understand that the Haves are just callously flaunting their hav-i-ness, what with all their expensive advice and recommendations. Why, its criminal really! Oh, its not criminal? Well it should be! Certainly its immoral. Decent people don't hoard wealth while other people are in need. Wealthy people don't need ALL that wealth! And if they're going to selfishly and thoughtlessly flaunt it . . . well!

Now of course, its important to note that certain people are not Haves but they exhibit hav-i-ness but we musn't confuse them with the enemy, ahem, I mean, the Haves. The pseudo-Haves are Have-nots that have sufficiently struggled and sacrificed to obtain bits and pieces of hav-i-ness. How do we know what's sufficient? Well, its hard to quantify so best to just go on a case by case basis. Also, if its someone you feel good about, that's a plus. Really, just use your best judgement.

You know, if the Haves would start up a fund here for the Have-nots it would go a VERY long way to reducing the stark disparity we all see and feel just terrible about, wouldn't it? It should be open and transparent. Anyone who contributes should be listed and applauded for their commitment to eradicating the scourge of disparity.

Of course those who need the help of the Furry Friends Fund (let's call it that, okay?) shouldn't be named because in this sick, profit-greedy society its looked down upon to panhandle, I mean, to be in need of assistance. People who are in need of help, who just want to give their GSDs the best possible food, vet care and homes that have mortgage payments, right? No one should ever be made to feel ashamed of wanting the best for their GSD! Let's unite in our love for this amazing, wonderful breed that we all love so dearly!


Though it goes without saying, /sarc.
 

·
Moderator
Joined
·
4,483 Posts
I had a Ridgie Mix, free to my family because the original family didn't know how to train her and she ran amok. They had no idea what an awesome dog they had. She was as smart as a whip, loving as can be. I was living pay check to pay check and she ate grocery store food. I got training books from the library. I used a choke chain but since she learned so quickly it almost never tightened. She won "best trick" at a kids' pet show. She lived till her mid teens and fell asleep in a sunny spot in the backyard and never woke again.

I also had times when I could not afford an vet emergency. That stunk. I didn't buy health insurance for my dog. I didn't have health insurance for myself!

Now we have two GSDS and can afford training and titling and I spend more on them than I do on myself. One of our grown sons has a sick puppy and we can afford to help with vet bills if he needs it (which he says he doesn't).

Once we both are retired this may all change again.
There are seasons in life and yes, we need to keep in mind that not everyone can afford the very best.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,408 Posts
Lumping people into a have and have-not category is ridiculous.
I agree with Castlemaid's statement.

This site is its own example. Membership is free. Thousands of pages of information and history is free. A discerning careful reader can find lots of valuable information here without spending a single cent. There are threads that frequently discuss best value per pound for food quality, online vet med ordering options to save money, resources with good prices, where to shop, and how to build-your-own equipment. All... Free.

There's nothing wrong with expensive wants and desires. If you want something specific and wonderful, you can save, you can choose to prioritize. Or you can choose a less expensive option. There is nothing wrong with either choice, but it is certainly not a black and white divide.

If you're truly interested in bridging a "gap", it would be far more helpful to start a thread, name it "Tips and Tricks for Saving Money, Raising a Healthy Sound GSD". Now there's an idea! Perhaps consider doing this, instead of drawing a line in the sand between haves and have-nots.
All of this.

And what Castlemaid said, too. While I'm not personally offended, your post was really offensive, Stone. Laughably so, really.

You'd have done way better to do something positive (and phrase it positively), as WI suggests, as opposed to just complaining.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,408 Posts
Average/low income - want a great pup but the prices are sky high. People that pay that much are only doing it for status or serious competitive show/work to get titles. We don't want/need that! We just want a pet.
I am just going to highlight this as being untrue and unfair, and this actually does offend me.

I wanted a great pup. I did want to do obedience and maybe sport competition with her, but first and foremost she has to be a good house pet. I did not buy her for status. If I had, I'd be bragging about her pedigree all over this site (which would be a way different intent from that of the posters who share a pedigree to learn more about their individual dog or pedigrees/lines in general) and to anyone who would listen offline. But I'm not. I wanted a good pet, and I'm not alone. I know so many people who chose to budget for a dog similar to mine because that dog would just be a good pet for their young families.

I've long hated that "must be nice"/"he or she only cares about status" attitude when someone decides that a particular option that happens to be more expensive is the right one for them.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,690 Posts
There's a saying that comes to mind after reading your post:

If wishes were fishes, there'd be no room left in the sea

We don't live in a perfect world, if every person was a millionaire and never had to scrounge for food or shelter there would still be unease and complainers out there that it's not enough. Instead of looking at others and being frustrated why don't you look at what you have and just be thankful for it.

Yes I was one of those people too that saved for a long time to afford a well bred GSD and spent the money into training and vet care for him. Is he perfect? Nope, but he's mine to love and care for and that's all that matters to me. I don't care if you spent $50 or $5000 on your dog, a good dog is a good dog. To me it's not about the cost, it's about supporting the breeders that are trying their best to do the breed right and not just make a buck or two.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
18,672 Posts
I think most people are open to learning and getting educated. One doesn't have to be stuck in only one way of thinking. I think it is extremely limiting to say that that having a good GSD is out of reach for most people, and the way you present the "elite" is offensive.

Most of us started off as pet dog owners, and as we learned more, set specific personal goals for our dogs. Seriously Stone, I saved up for two years to buy a dog from a good breeder, and I drive a 2004 van, just to show you how I set my priorities; I find your reasoning and thought process offensive that I'm a rich snob for having an expensive dog and doing IPO. (Because rich people take two years to save up a couple of thousand dollars, right?)


What you feel is unatainable, some of us worked our buts off to attain. How about giving people some credit for being open to learning about the GSD lines, breeding, BYB vs. good breeder. How about giving people some credit for finding a new passion and pursuing it, be it IPO, SAR, or other working or performance venue. If you choose a different path for dog ownership, fine - we all wish you health and happiness, but don't dump on those that chose a different path for their dogs and their level of dog involvement.

How about some credit for wanting to help others make knowledgeable, informed decisions about getting a dog? Lumping people into a have and have-not category is ridiculous.

There was a time when I thought that anyone who paid money for a pure-bred papered dog was a snob, LOL! Guess what? I knew beans!! I understand so much more about the dog world now, and can respect different views and values. We are all on a journey, and seeing our journey though only the filter of money is very self-limiting.

If people come on this board, I'm assuming they are not average dog owners, they are above average because they want to read and learn about GSDs, so bring on the breeding, training, historical, ethical discussions!
:thumbup: THIS is the majority of the people I meet in the dog world, me included (who still drives the '97 truck I have owned since '99). Well said.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,921 Posts
I am far from rich. What I have learned is, where there is a will, there is a way. If people want it bad enough they will figure out how to do it. I took a loan from my parents to get my first GSD. Actually every GSD I have bought I have made payments on. I found that majority of good breeders I have met, are will to work people as long as they are the right people for their dogs. Key words there are right people. The breeders I have dealt with are interviewing you as much as you are them.

The fact is, dogs are expensive. The $2k down payment is nothing compared to the expense of owning the dog for a life time. My wife's dad has two rescue GSD's that in the first year of having them cost him over $5k in vet bills each. On top of training to deal their behavioral issues. So which one is really less expensive?
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
14,021 Posts
I am far from rich. What I have learned is, where there is a will, there is a way. If people want it bad enough they will figure out how to do it. I took a loan from my parents to get my first GSD. Actually every GSD I have bought I have made payments on. I found that majority of good breeders I have met, are will to work people as long as they are the right people for their dogs. Key words there are right people. The breeders I have dealt with are interviewing you as much as you are them.

The fact is, dogs are expensive. The $2k down payment is nothing compared to the expense of owning the dog for a life time. My wife's dad has two rescue GSD's that in the first year of having them cost him over $5k in vet bills each. On top of training to deal their behavioral issues. So which one is really less expensive?
I think experiences are going to be across the board. I personally have never spent any money on behavioral issues for any dog--rescue or not. My most expensive dog to date is the one that came from a breeder(hips).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
812 Posts
I'm not offended. Understanding the available resources is a good idea when coming up with a plan of action. I don't see the post as anything more than that.
Resources in the broadest sense is "what is the owner ready, willing, and able to do".
Can be income, can be a fenced yard, or lack thereof, lack of time, ample time, emotional resources, stress levels, etc..
I lurk mostly and learn much, and enjoy/love the lively debates. I'm very much in favour of a broad range of answers to problems, especially as many of us just lurk and learn, but if you are trying to help an individual dog and owner, figuring out what the owner's resources are (financial, physical, emotional) is helpful start.
Back to lurking...
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
5,850 Posts
Stone is frustrated.Just one of those times that we all have when we hit send before thinking things through.
Baillif apparently doesn't have that problem.
Maybe this post can be turned into a thrifty dog owner's thread as WiFi suggested.
 
1 - 20 of 127 Posts
Top