SEE A PROFESSOINAL EVALUATION BY GUIDE DOGS ABOUT THE MIDDLE OF THE PAGE

                         

 

 

 

Robin,

 

I flew to Iowa in June 1998 to choose and pick up my Royalair puppy.  You

had two litters at the time for me to choose from and it was an agonizing

decision because they were all so wonderful.  I chose a male and flew him

home to VA; named him Spirit.  He is now 6 years old and is the most loved

and lovely dog.  He has educated several people who were previously

extremely afraid of dogs that dogs can be trusted and loved.  His reaction

to fear is to take it on as a challenge to win that person over--and he's

done it every single time!  People stop me and ask me about him.  If they

know anything about German shepherd's, they know that there is something

different about him.  I explain your policy and vision for the breed and

explain the differences to them.  They are always impressed and can see the

healthy results that appear so correct and balanced.  For the folks that

are not afraid of dogs in general but are a bit timid with German

shepherd's, I tell them that he looks like a German shepherd but acts like

a Lab.  That gives them the confidence to approach Spirit and to become a

friend.

 

Last June, my son married.  There were people all over my house and Spirit

was in heaven!  At one point he was in the corner made by two sofas at

right angles to each other.  There were two young children on each sofa

leaning over him with three additional children on the floor.  He was

completely hemmed in.  One would think he would become nervous, but one

look at his face and instead, he was in rapture!  He would like my house to

be filled with people all the time.

 

By far he's the best dog who has ever lived with me.  He is constantly

impressing people with his intelligence and understanding of the world.  He

totally lives up to his name, Spirit.  He is the joy in my everyday life

and a loyal companion.  He like to show off his tricks--lots of basics but

the one that the kids seem to enjoy is "spin" (around to his left) then

"OK, now unwind" (around to his right).  He works almost entirely with hand

signals which is handy when I'm talking to someone and want him near me or

want him to 'sit' or 'down' or 'quiet'.

 

I was sorry to hear about his sire, Falco.  My heart goes out to you.  I

don't know what I'll do when Spirit passes, but I'll be comforted knowing

that he has more than accomplished his self given mission in life to

convince everyone he meets that dogs can be loving and kind and gentle and

generally marvelous creatures.

 

Thanks,

Marsha Mills (was Sherland in 1998)

 

 

Hi Robin:

 

Real glad to hear from you.  Your note was great - and reminds me of our two pups and how lucky we were to find you when we went looking for our German Shepherd Dogs.  We can only echo Marsha's sentiments.  Our brother and sister pair are a real hoot - they keep us young and going, and they are great together.  They are very calm - which is good because they are inside dogs.  As you know, we have a very big yard (for city standards), but when we're inside - so are they.  They sleep at the foot of our bed and only awaken us when they've heard something or a thunder storm is approaching (that is Grafin will - Kaiser, I believe would sleep through a war he is so laid back)....

 

We take them everywhere with us - they have command of the complete back of our Jeep Cherokee.  They travel well and always look forward to a ride.  They have developed quite a vocabulary.  Many words we have had to spell out rather than say a-loud, and some words we have had to start spelling backwards because they figured out what the original spelling was too. 

  

They are very smart and know much of what we say.  Many times we have caught them listening intently to our conversations, and reacting to what was said.  Kaiser is especially fond of the word "bath" - which we could not figure out because he does not particularly like the act of getting a bath.  Then one day when he gave Teresa a sloppy lick across the cheek and we caught ourselves referring to it as giving her a bath - and it clicked - he associated the word bath with giving his favorite person a kiss.  Ever since, we have had to particularly careful of how and when we use that word.....  These pups have a true cognitive process - they think things out, and they solve problems.

 

Teresa is a real sight to see walking two german shepherd dogs at the same time.  Many times she has been stopped by folks asking about the dogs.

 

 

 

Dear Robin,

 

Thanks so much for the puppy you sent us-We are calling him Nico. He is the most etraordinary puppy I have ever owned and he has captured our hearts lock, stock & barrel.He came through his journey without problems, we have had him out for socialization at the local park where a camp of 12 kids between the ages of 6 & 9 were playin g. Nico ran right over and included himself in the playing to the delight of the campers and their counselors .Everyone had the opertunity of petting him and the counselors remarked to eachother about one youngster who had problems-that her face lit up when she was petting Nico.The Next day he wound up playing with young girls (5-8) years of age. Who took turn holding him as if he were a doll. The adults we’ve met have all commented on how friendly, calm and relaxed he is.He has already learned to come and is getting used to the leash. He is very easy to train! We’ve also got him learning to retrieve a ball as well and he can really run! As far as his housetraining, he uderstands that he is immedialty supposed to do his stuff.(we thank you for that!) He has had only one accident so far. We are amazed how easy he is to take car of for a puppy.

 

Peter Diamond, NJ

 

Hi Robin, This is Steve Fillmore I purchased a female from you a year and 3 months ago. It has been a struggle for me the dog is doing fine. I started training at 7 months for Search and Rescue and then the guy training me got a job promotion and I just wasn't satisfied with the training time so in the meantime my friends and I went on a pheasant hunt in Northeat Kansas and one of the guys with us happened to be a k-9 officer and I told him my story and he told me about a dog trainer in Lawerence, Kansas so I called him and told him about my dog and he said bring her up. So I did and I said I wanted to do Search and Rescue with her so we started and he was impressed with the drive and nose she had. This went on for a couple of weeks I went up there twice a week. So I knew I had something special and he ask me if I ever thought about having her be a detection dog, so we done a test to see if she had it in her and she did. So now I'm doing the tracking and doing narcotic work with her and now he thinks she would be a Schutzhung dog so we are just getting started with that. I'm sorry that this is long but I just wanted you to know just how wonderful she is, not only to me but to my community. Dixie is to me as Falco is to you. Once she is State certified in narcotics and has a tracking and Schutzhund title I will get back with you. Thank you for the wonderful dog that you brought into my life! Steve Fillmore

 

 

 

 

 

Hi Robin - I just wanted to give you an almost one year report on Nick. He is fantastic!! I little hyper at times, but truly charming and a joy to have as a member of our house. He is growing up to look exactly like Falco. He sits on our couch exactly like the picture of Falco on your web-site. I took both of them to the vet two weeks ago and he weighed a whoppig 82 pounds of pure muscle!! (about 8months) maybe we could get together sometime and I can show him to you?

 

Linda Quinn

 

Robin,

 

Merry Christmas! Widus is a great dog! He seems to be everyones envy in our nieghborhood Here’s a picture of how he’s grown, He is 13 months and is 120lbs.

 

Lu Brevetti, CA

 

Hope you enjoy the photo's- must mention last feb Kieth and I went to the mall shopping, we were gone for about 31/2 hrs. when we returned the dore was about 4" open.Joshua was right there waiting . a few things wer upset but nothing taken.I don't think they got to far. A few others in our area had items stolen. When we leave he is always inside.I can't say enough about my Joshua.

 

Barb , Michigan

 

Hi Robin:

 

 

 

I wanted to keep you posted on Zest's progress in her training with Guide

 

Dogs of America. As you know, she is now 9 months old.

 

 

 

She came into season for the first time August 17. GDA likes us to have

 

them stay in their kennel while the females are in heat and so during the

 

three weeks Zest was there, they took the opportunity to do hip x-rays and

 

her evaluation. I do not have a "good-fair-excellent" reading on the

 

x-rays

 

yet, but suffice it to say they were good enough for her to continue in

 

the

 

program and since she was in heat when the x-rays were taken, it is

 

probable

 

when she is not in season, the rating will be even better.

 

 

 

Her evaluation was also done and a copy is below. At the time she was

 

having a second bout of panosteitis in her left front leg. Both lasted

 

approximately 2-3 weeks and were managed well with anti-inflammatories and

 

rest while in the kennel.

 

 

 

Puppy Temperament Progress Report

 

This is an evaluatiuon by guide dogs in CA

 

 

 

Recommendations and Summary:

 

Generally Zest was easy to manage and control on the evaluation walk. She

 

was not hat interested in environmental stimuli. She did not show any signs of

 

fear while out. She did well around traffic and noises. She walked well on leash and

 

maintained a loose lead for the majority of the walk.

 

She did go out to sniff distractions and needed corrections for this

 

behavior. This is the area where she needs the most work. She should be corrected for

 

attempting to go and sniff the environment when she is on leash with you. The only time

 

she should be allowed to sniff the ground is when she is given the GET BUSY

 

command and when she is on free play. Even when she is sniffing for the GET BUSY

 

command it should not be excessive and she should not be allowed to "lock

 

in" on smells.

 

 

 

She had average interest in strange dogs that were barking at her. She

 

alerted to them but was easily managed past them.

 

 

 

Appeared to be pretty stable.

 

 

 

Health Comments: Lameness throughout walk. Puppy raiser was aware prior to

 

eval and it was diagnosed as panosteitis.

 

 

 

I plan on having Zest temperament tested by the GSDCA when she is a year.

 

Could you send me a copy of her pedigree? I don't have a current picture

 

ofher, but she looks a lot like her father and is a good retriever. Her

 

sister Zealand, who looks like her mother, is also still in the program

 

and both are attending the obedience class taught by Bob Penny. Bob is in

 

charge of temperament testing for the GSDCA and has been involved with

 

GSDs for more than 50 years.

 

 

 

Ann and Zest ^~^

 

Hi Robin,

 

Just happend to see your ad in the German Shepherd magazine and I

 

just found your website........love looking at your pictures. You might

 

remember me....Pam Thomas from Des Moines, Iowa......we purchased

 

"Tasha" from you in July of 1990....she is the most beautiful

 

Silver-gray shepherd that anyone has ever seen.

 

Anyone and everyone who meets here is amazed at how wonderful she looks

 

even at her age. Just wanted to let you know that is Tasha is still

 

with us and remains in good health......will send you a picture of her

 

soon. Thank you for raising such wonderful animals!

 

Sincerely,

 

 

 

Pam Thomas Tasha wa 11-1/2 when that was sent-she lived to be 13 1/2

 

 

 

Robin,

 

 Just a quick note to tell you that Liberty is the finest dog I have ever

had. She's my fourth German Shepherd, too.

She weighed in at 54 pounds the other day. Still lean and growing faster han her fur can keep up.

 Linda has had her to Doggie Kindergarten twice now and she is doing

 really well, the teacher keeps asking if she has any search and rescue

 dogs in her family tree. Everybody including my dad thinks she's a he, because of her size. The

 smallest any of the doctors (even when we got her), said she would go 90

pounds, her Kindergarten teacher is also a doctor and a (doggie shrink)

 says probably 100. Take Care, Linda and Dave Huff

   .  Hi Robin ---

          

         Just a note to let you know that Rosie (of Falco and Emma) is doing

         spectacular. What a wonderful dog!

         She is in her second round of training and is responding quite well. She is

     a bit of a rebellious teen on occasion: refusing to come when called,

     harassing the cats and other such misdemeaners. But overall

     she is perfect. And very, very beautiful.

      

      Congratulations, Robin: You breed tremendous dogs.

   

      Doug, Sally, Jacob & (of course) Rosie.

Minneapolis

 

Hi there Royalair German Shepherds,

 

I was so very excited when I came across your web. Wish I had a picture of my Joshua. He looks just like his daddy luke. Love him very much. He is a house dog but likes to play out doors. He is spoiled....very spoiled and wants for nothing. I prayed for a very special dog, with all the mix up I sometimes was little doughtful, but in the end god did answere. I would not give him up for anything.

 

God bless, Barb grant, MI and Joshua von Grant.

 

Dear Robin,

 

Could find a picture with a smaller boy and a bigger dog! Sophie is doing well. She’s still leading the good life protecting her boy and her cats. She’s finished beginning obedience(won the Blue in fact) Hope all is well with you

 

Judy

 

Dear Robin,

 

We just wanted to write you and let you know how our puppy is doing. He is one of Kira and Falco’s boys. He is about 4 months old now and he is so good. He’s not quite house broken yet but he’s almost there. I’ve enclosed a picture of Ranger for you to see. He has beautiful markings and very large paws. I can’t wait to see him full grown. I take him to puppy kindergarten. He’s extremely intelligent and learns very quickly. Were almost done with the class and are signing up for puppy advanced classes. It’s amazing how smart he is. We are very happy with him.

 

Randy & Jill Guzz0

 

                                               

 

Dear Robin,

 

As you can see Spirit is growing up just fine. He still has to grow into his ears though! He’s such a good dog even though he is in a slightly defiant stage. Actuallly he’s quite obedient for his age. But still so easily distracted. I sent the one where the snow is on his nose because he reminded me of his dad on in that photo. Thought you might enjoy seeing the resemblance. Spirit is a real people dog and adores kids. He doesn’t understand yet that he is frightening to some of the kids , but I’ve seen him belly crawl up to a group to be closer to their level. I don’t think I broadcasting to much to say he is very smart with such a sweat personality. Although I remind him dailey that german shepherds don’t cry, He’s extremley vocal and I’m sure he thinks I’m talking. As you can tell we are enjoying each other , Thankyou for breeding such a terrific dog!

 

Marsh Sherland

 

robin,

 

 

 

just a note to let you know about cassie. she is a big hit at the park. lots of people ask if they can pet her as they walk by. several people have expressed how beautiful they think she is. i have met more people in the last three weeks when i take her as opposed to the three years that i have gone there to run. she is very friendly with everyone and enjoys all of the attention. she continues to grow. i had to go buy a new harness for her tonight. the pink one was going to be too small soon. she sleeps in my bedroom now on a pillow and blanket. she likes to go for a drive. it was raining the other day and she just wasn't sure about the windshield wipers. thanks, i do appreciate what a good pup she is.

 

randy

 

 

 

HI! Here are 2 pictures of Rex- who is now about 2 1/2 years old- youcall a few weeks ago and inquired- he has been in good health and has acompanion- a lab- Daisy who is a year younger- is a happy boy- thanksagain for sending us such a great companion-

 

Ilsa Werrion

 

 

 

Hi Robin,

 

Just happend to see your ad in the German Shepherd magazine and I just found your website........love looking at your pictures. You mightremember me....Pam Thomas from Des Moines, Iowa......we purchased" Tasha" from you in July of 1990....she is the most beautifulSilver-gray shepherd that anyone has ever seen.Anyone and everyone who meets here is amazed at how wonderful she lookseven at her age. Just wanted to let you know that is Tasha is still with us and remains in good health......will send you a picture of hersoon. Thank you for raising such wonderful animals!

 

Sincerely, Pam Thomas

 

robin,

 

 

 

just a note to let you know about cassie. she is a big hit at the park.

lots of people ask if they can pet her as they walk by. several people have

expressed how beautiful they think she is. i have met more people in the

last three weeks when i take her as opposed to the three years that i have

gone there to run. she is very friendly with everyone and enjoys all of the

attention. she continues to grow. i had to go buy a new harness for her

tonight. the pink one was going to be too small soon. she sleeps in my

bedroom now on a pillow and blanket. she likes to go for a drive. it was

raining the other day and she just wasn't sure about the windshield wipers.

thanks, i do appreciate what a good pup she is.

randy

 

HI! Here are 2 pictures of Rex- who is now about 2 1/2 years old- you

call a few weeks ago and inquired- he has been in good health and has a

companion- a lab- Daisy who is a year younger- is a happy boy- thanks

again for sending us such a great companion- Ilsa Werrio

 

 

 

Hi Robin,

 

Just a short line to fill ya in on Reco. The ear is coming up and he is

looking good!!!!!

He started school last night. I should say we all started school because me,

Bob and Reco are all going and learning. Its just basic obedience for now. He

did really well for the 1st night and you could tell he was really getting

into it. The instructor said Reco is the first German Shepherd Dog that's

she's had in class for a long time that has such a good disposition. She said

the ones coming though lately have really been nippy. Im so proud of my fur

 

kid!!!!!

Hope you and your family have a nice Thanksgiving!!!!!!!

Thanks again for our boy.

 

Cyndi Robinson

 

 

 

-------Hello Robin,

 

It has been almost six months since I picked up Xena. She has turned out

to be a wonderful dog. At eight months she weighs in at 85lbs. She loves to

be outside and will play ball for hours just like Falco. Here are some

 

pictures.

 

Thanks,

 

Ehren Bilshausen

 

 

 

 

We adopted one of your male pups born on October 12th of 2000. His name is Schultz (after the character of the same name on "Hogans' Heros"). I just wanted to drop you a line to tell you how well he is doing. He will graduate from Clicker Obedience Training next Monday. We have had a lot of dogs (and we've loved them all), but Schultz is by far the brightest. He is so easy to train it's unbelieveable! And, he is extremely affectionate. He has a terrific sense of humor..he is such a tease. When he wants to play he certainly lets us know. We all truly appreciate your care of the breed. Schultz is everything we wished for and more. We can take him just about anywhere and he knows how to behave, winning hearts along the way. My Mother and my stepfather each grew up having dogs put upon them and into their care when they were children themselves,( My Mother had the assignment of taking care of my Uncles dogs when he went off to the war and she had been attacked by a boxer when she was three years of age and my stepdads father was a breeder and my stepdad had the job of mucking out the kennels daily, plus he had a real fear of dogs) consequently, neither of them had much affection for dogs period. They simply tolerated our dogs all of these years, until now, they have developed a real love of Schultz because it was through him they both overcame their fear of at least THIS dog. My stepdad is so proud of himself that he can take the ball out of Schultzs' mouth, that is a huge occasion for him in itself. And my mother just enjoys the real companionability of this sweet, wonderful dog. Our dog trainer just lost her Shepherd in June, and she fell in love with our pup. I have given her your e-mail address. Thank you again, Robin. Sincerely, Lynda Pickhard

 

Robin,

 

Just wanted to let you know that we sent the puppy crate you loaned us back last Friday. It should be arriving soon. Thanks so much for it's use. Elke is absolutely wonderful! We all love her dearly and are trying not to spoil her too much. She is adorable and a real sweetheart but has plenty of spunk. She is very self-confident and social at puppy class and loves to learn. We couldn't be more pleased! We'll keep you posted on her progress and growth (we think she'll be a very big girl!) Thanks so much for this wonderful addition to our family.

 

Pat Woelk

 

Hi Robin,

 

Just a quick note to say how much we love our new pup... From Falco, & Emma born January 3 2001.I wish I could of been able to bring 2 home with me...At 3 months Sable knows sit, stay, down, crawl,and a few more tricks also...Just an all around excellent pup...I noticed she gets board quick and we need to keep teaching her new tricks...And taking her new places...She has no fear, witch is really great! She will follow me any were and do anything I ask of her at such a young age...Within reason of course...She just loves to be with us and has a spunky personality... Sable talks back allot witch is so funny... She is just what I was looking for in a German Shepherd. ..Everyone teases me about going all the way to Iowa to get a dog...But they all are very impressed by her Good looks and Super personality.

 

Thanks for such a Great Pup. I hope someday I will be able to get another from you!

 

Carol Strean, from Wisconsin

 

 

Hi Robin- Just browsing thru your web page(Dog Fancy you recall our meeting) and just had to up date you on our wonderful Brandy-your

very special puppy which we got from you. She will be 10 in January 2002, she still is wonderful and healthy. Gives us much joy and

companionship. Often tell folks she is our "9th child" that spoiled! I continue to marvel at how fortunate we were to find you in the Dog

Fancy that year. You raise wonderful Shepherds and I especially appreciate having been one of the fortunate ones to find you(and Brandy).

 

Thanks again. Jane and Brandy

 

 

 

Robin,

Just wanted to say hello and to let you know how Prince (son of Falco &

Emma) is doing. He is over nearly 10 months old and doing very well. He is

litterally a bundle of energy. We love him to death. He is 70 lbs now tall.

He looks like he is all legs. He runs like the wind and does not tire.

Yesterday he trotted with me for 7 miles. I think that is very respectable.

He carried his frisbee the whole way. We recently returned from a trip to

Florida. Prince had a blast there. He really loved the beach. He is a

natural digger and loves to run into the water. He even went for a swim.

He is everything we wanted in a dog. Thanks again. We will send you a

picture of him when he turns a year old. Hope all is well with the family.

 

Take care,

 

Peter, Diane & Prince

 

 

Dear Robin,

 

Just want you to know how much I love my dog I got from you in May. She is a daughter of Falco and Kira, I just love her. She takes good care of me and is protective when necessary but loving otherwise. She is the smartest dog I have ever had and I love her so much.

 

 

Diane Watson

 

Altoona Iowa

 

 

 

Hi, Robin!

 

 

 

Well, it's been ablout 2 years since we adopted Jags from you. And he is quite possibly the most spoiled dog on the planet! He thinks that our sole purpose in life is to throw the Frisbee for him!!! He will play for hours, if we'll throw it that long... luckily we have 5 people with pretty good throwing ability!! He is a real sweetie. He stands 29 1/2" at the shoulder, and weighs about 85 lbs. but he tends to lose 5 -10 lb. in the summer from all the running!! We think he looks an awful lot like his daddy. Just wanted to say thanks for continuing to breed the kind of German shepherd that I remember as a kid.

 

 

 

Connie Ortz

 

Petersburg, Ohio

 

Robin, My name is Dave Read. I just found your website.

 

We purchased a dog from you about 6 years ago. WE named her Keisha. She is a daughter of Falco, and Franka.

 

She has been a terrific dog. We have thought about having her bred a couple different times and never done it. Just wanted to see if you had any input for us. I do not have accsess to a stud to my liking. We mainly want this to be a 1 time thing due to keisha being such a great dog. We have owned 3 other German Shepherds and none of these can compared to her. Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks, Dave

 

Dear Robin,

 

Believe it or not, the day you shipped Igraine into Tallahassee is still the coolest day we have had. We have never run the air conditioning in October, until this year. And they say the weather is not changing.

 

Igraine is proving to be every bit the "pistol." Last weekend the basset hound was instructing her on the finer points of digging a nice cool hole to lie in. Then she dug herself a similar spot. She had a blast; dirt was flying everywhere. A few hours later we were all in the house. I heard this splashing out in the laundry room. When I got out there, Graine had her front paws in the water bowl, and she was "digging" the water out of the bowl. There was water everywhere, but all I could do was laugh.

 

She has developed into quite a "vent hog." This is an animal who lies on top of an air conditioning vent, cooling themselves but not letting any cold air into the room for anyone else. Igraine has learned to listen for the outside cooling unit to kick on, and then she dives, head first, for the nearest vent. She can be in the middle of anything and when she hears the a/c nothing else seems to matter. She is also an ice-aholic. Anytime someone opens the refrigerator, she goes running to the refrigerator and waits until you give her an ice cube. Some days I think she has 20! (Every time she does a lovely sit, so this command should not take much work.) Her attitude of excess extends to her playthings as well. We keep a small basket for her toys in the family room, and if any other dog expresses an interest in "her" toys, she will go to sleep with her head in the toy basket

 

We went to the vet on Friday. Igraine was exactly 14 weeks old and weighed 30 pounds. She no longer gets adult food, but instead has been switched to senior for a couple of weeks.

 

While her looks never mattered to us, she is turning out to have a lovely face and ruff. She seems very bonded to us all, and greets us all with great enthusiasm, however short our absence has been. She is already barking protectively, although sometimes with amusing results. She is in no position to take on any of the neighbors' big dogs, and the great dane has had to go to her rescue a couple of times. So far, its great!

 

Thanks. Jo Ann

 

 

 

Hi Robin,

I have been meaning to drop you a line about my beautiful boy "Spirit".  He was born

July 2001 from Falco and Emma.  He is the embodiment of a German Shepherd - he is intelligent, loyal, instinctually protective, affectionate and fun.  I can't take him anywhere

without people commenting on his beauty, dignity and poise.  I just wanted to thank you

for breeding such wonderful animals.  He has been a blessing for my family and me.

I've attached a picture of him from this past January 2004. 

Take care and again, thank you for my "beautiful gift".

Cathy DeVito

 

Robin,

 

Just a quick note to let you know that Seamus (the black/silver pup born

8/10) is doing great.  He's a lean 70 lbs at six months and is VERY handsome

and noble-looking.  He is extremely well-behaved, very calm (unless my 8 yr

old is winding him up), suspicious of strangers but still friendly, and

seems to be very intelligent.  We couldn't be happier.

This picture is from a few months ago.  I'll send you an updated one soon.

You've given us a wonderful addition to our family.

 

One question: only one testicle has dropped at this point.  Our vet said

that they both need to drop by six months or else he would need to be

neutered.  Do you agree or can we wait a bit longer?

 

Thank you so much for the picture of Falco-what a dog. I have a friend with a digital camera who's a pretty good photographer and I'm going to have her take some pictures of Dax and send them to you on the computer. He is such a wonderful dog, smart, loving, calm, friendly, playful, and eager to learn along with a natural protective instinct that's balanced with a stable temperament. I guess I don't have to tell you all this you bred him, but I have to brag about our bunny bear-that's his nickname-once in awhile. We nicknamed him that because he's all black and big like a bear but loveable and snuggly like a bunny! I have owned shepherds before and they were all great but he is the best example of what the breed is meant to be that I have ever seen and had the privilege to be owned by! :) Thanks again for the picture, Dax's Mom and Dad.

 

Hello Robin,

 

It has been sometime since we last spoke and I wanted to give you an update on Nicco. Kerry and I could not be happier with Nicco. He is simpy the BEST. He will be 1 year old on 2/5 and at our last visit to the vet was a 103lbs!!! His temprament is outstanding and he is a most loving dog. He has become a "big mush" with family and friends but is ever alert to strangers. Case in point, Kerry has been running with Nicco on a daily basis when the weather allows. Two weeks ago while running, a man in the neighborhood was "checking Kerry out" as she ran by. Nicco stopped running began barking and gave the guy a look of hey don't bother her... He got the message. I promise to send updated pictures. We were comparing pictures of Hawkeye and Tina and of course Nicco is a perfect cross between both of them.

 

We have been training with a professional dog trainer and it is working quite well. We hope to continue in the spring with the CGC training and are shooting for the summer or late spring for the test. We will keep you posted. Thanks for all your efforts in continuing the most perfect breed of dog. We are so fortunate to have found you and Nicco.  Sincerely Brian and Kerry Long Island, NY.

 

 

Hi Robin, hope everything is pulling together for you since the foundation collapsed and the loss of Falco. We've been thinking of you and hope things are going well.

 Just wanted to let you know Dax and I are still doing well in class. In fact, we've had a special invitation. We were invited to get together with some of the instructors from kennel club this summer to continue our work. This is a tight group of 3 or 4 who compete in obedience and conformation. They have been getting together for years on their own and are very serious. My instructor called me aside and said Dax and I have really clicked and should start preparing to compete. I explained I had never been in competition and the advanced obedience classes don't start until fall. So she invited us to join them this summer, and told me they get together to help each other prepare and I could pick up a lot of pointers and help.  We are going to go for it! These are really nice people who are serious about training their dogs and are willing to help if your serious and willing to put the time and effort into it. Plus your dog has to have potential and Dax certainly has that. He really enjoys working and picks things up so quickly we both look forward to this. I have to admit I'm a little shy and usually like to find a corner to hang out in, but with Dax that's impossible! He really turns heads and people come up just to watch him in class. Last week in the middle of class one of the other students and her kids stopped working their dog to come over and pet Dax while he was at a sit stay!  Thanks again for breeding such wonderful dogs, it's a joy to be owned by one! :) Tom, Renee, & Dax Lustig.

 

Royalair's Trisonic Valkyrie (Falco and Kira 9/6/00) finished her open title today in Hamilton, OH with a nice score of 1921/2 (big time lag on the F8) and a red ribbon. It was a difficult venue with an especially tough ring set up.

 

We got our first two legs back to back the first two times in the open ring in Indianapolis in February and then had a dry spell which included 7 consecutive NQ's.....mostly just attention issues.

 

She is a great dog, physically powerful and at the same time gentle, smart but with a great sense of humor, fierce when she has to be but loving to all,,,,,,,she can work outside with me all day long at the farm or be just as content lying at my feet in the office all day (like she is doing right now),,,,,,,she loves to ride in the truck for 15 minutes or 15 hours it doesn't matter to her,,,,,,,she loves to train and seldom has trouble doing what I ask of her (as long as I am clear as to what I want),,,,,,,,I would be hard pressed to find a more enjoyable companion.

 

I think we will take a couple of weeks off and see what we can do in utility this fall. She needs some polishing, but is in general ready.

 

Thanks for your emails, I really enjoy reading them.

Later,

Mike and Valkyrie CDX

 

Hi, Robin!

 

I hope this finds you doing well. I will have new pics soon, but I wanted to drop you a note while I was thinking of it and had a minute.

 

Biscuit is doing GREAT!  She's five months old today, and weighs about 45 pounds. Lately she has been eating ravenously, so I suspect she's about to grow like a weed (again).  She is beautiful and such a joy. We have just bought her another bigger crate--we now have 5, in various sizes!  I just can't stand to crate her up when the crate is getting too small for her.

 

She passed puppy kindergarten, as you know, with flying colors. She is signed up for the second puppy class, but that got postponed til the end of July, so I've arranged for private lessons every other Saturday until then--just something to keep us motivated. We'll be focusing on the CGC test skills.

 

The other morning I was getting dressed upstairs, and instead of waiting downstairs as she usually does, Biscuit braved the wood stairs all by herself, and you should've seen the proud look on her face when she reached the top! She was just beside herself with her accomplishment, prancing around the second story like she'd just reached the top of Mt Everest!

 

Her coat is still changing all the time, but she still has the racoon eyes, with brown legs and a dark sable back. Her tail looks all black but with light brown on the underside. Her bottom area is all fluffy light tan--like a buck!  There are some very light parts on her chest. The colors do keep changing, though. We'll see! Her nose is all black. Nearly all of her teeth are in, or are coming in now.

 

She is reliable about loose-leash walking, sitting at corners and when meeting people, and is gentle with children. (She is friendly with nearly everyone, once she meets them; the only person she didn't warm up to was the vet who spayed her--he has a very odd voice due to throat surgery, and it scares her a bit.) She is very fast at chasing the rabbits out of our yard, and is also a skillful digger--too bad for the lawn! She loves to "help" in the garden by toting around my pots and trowel and gloves.  :-)

 

Well, I hope this hasn't been too much info. It had been awhile since I wrote, so I thought I'd bring you up to date.

 

Have you heard how mom Rainy Daze is doing in the nursing home? Give dad Haweye a hello from all of us over here in Illinois.

 

All the best,

 

Betsy

 

i Robin - just a short update for you.  Her nickname is "Pig-Pen" (from Charlie Brown).  She goes out to the dogyard and digs, especially if there's a puddle -then she comes in with clouds of dust surrounding her - or drops of mud falling from her belly.  Tuli was spayed on the 27th and came home with an elizabethan collar.  Two days later she had destroyed it!!  Her incision had a blood tinged discharge so we went and had a vet check it out - she was having a "suture reaction".  I told the vet about the e-collar so she brought out a "Bite Not" collar.  Plastic wrapped around her neck from just behind her ears to her shoulders.  It closed with velcro and had a 1" wide elastic strip that wrapped around it to securely close it.  There was a 1" web strap that went from between her shoulders to wrap behind her front legs, across her chest and back to the collar -to be tightened.  Well, she thought about it for 2 days, and when alone for 40mins. she totally destroyed it - chewed off all the straps and the foam liner was in pieces that were no bigger than a quarter!!  THAT'S what happens when a super intelligent girls is bored!!!!!  She is way too smart.

 

When I take her out in public, people just stop and watch her - eventually they say "what a magnificent dog (she's usually seen as being male)"  They all think she's big, but she's down to 80lbs. (I didn't  want extra weight on her for the surgery)  Her face is absolutely beautiful.   I can't begin to tell you how many people wanted a puppy from a mating between her and Jalo.

  

Now about Jalo!  He is my nighttime guardian.  He sleeps on my bed, but let there be a strange noise and he's right up to check it out - grumbling way down deep in his chest.  Sounds very formidable!  He has finally decided that food is good for him, and is up to 90lbs.  He doesn't walk, he bounces, like he has springs in his feet.

 

I have done a LOT of research, and have decided that beyond their puppy shots, they will NOT get boosters.  The Lyme and Giardia shots cause more damage than Lyme disease, or giardia will cause.  Parvo is implicated in DCM.  I will send some info in another post later today.

 

Irene

To have played and laughed with enthusiasm, and sung with exultation - this is to have succeeded.

Ralph Waldo Emerson

 

 My daughter and I just got back from Dog Fest at the Voice of America Park in West Chester, Ohio.  I can tell you for certain that Jackson and Willow were the best looking and behaving German Shepherds at the festival. People kept approaching us and inquiring "Where did these shepherds come from?"  One man brought over his pitiful looking, angulated back skinny poor shepherd, and proudly told me how he had had it imported from Germany. I felt so sorry for the dog and the man. The superior dogs are from Iowa.  I gave out your web site to many people. Keep breeding those gorgeous well mannered shepherds.  The world needs them.   Jackson and Willow had a big day socializing and are now napping.  Marcia

 

third day of searching Wednesday north of Mason City turned up no clues in the effort to find William “Willie” Child.

 

 Hadenfeltdts dogs are all from royalair! See news story below

 

Six dogs from Iowa Search and Rescue joined the group of family, friends and law enforcement looking for the 32-year-old Mason City man who was last seen Friday afternoon.

 

Law enforcement personnel continued to search the shallow waters and the banks of the Winnebago River.

 

Child apparently put his canoe into the river at King Fisher Hollow conservation area on Friday. On Monday, when his vehicle was still at the hollow, authorities started a search.

 

His overturned canoe was spotted approximately a mile down river.

 

Search parties worked throughout the day on Monday and Tuesday.

 

On Wednesday, family and friends stood watch on five bridges over the waterway and an airplane, piloted by family friend Keith Muchow of Clear Lake, flew over the river several times.

 

Iowa Search and Rescue members said good weather helped their effort.

 

“The cooler the better for working with the dogs,” said Shirley Hadenfeldt as the mid-day sun warmed the river banks.

 

The statewide organization, with more than 40 members and 15 certified search dogs, had six dogs searching Wednesday.

 

 “We have four German shepherds and two labs,” she said.

 

 Kyle Hadenfeldt said the dogs did not detect any scents while searching along the river banks.

 

The dogs and their handlers worked for approximately five hours on Wednesday, ending their day shortly after 4:30 p.m.

 

Ali Child of Clear Lake, Willie’s mother, continued to take part in the search, parking near the Killdeer Avenue bridge over the Winnebago. She remains optimistic.

 

“My sister in Kansas City suggested we start putting up posters,” she said. “He hasn’t been found here. This is an assumption that he’s here and sometimes you need to consider all your options.”

 

Cerro Gordo County Sheriff Kevin Pals said the search has focused on a two-mile area near the locations where the pickup and the canoe were found.

 

“The only clues that we have are in that area,” said Pals, “so that’s where we’re focusing right now. We’ll be expanding the search some.”

 

Pals said the Mason City Fire Department will start a search in the city limits this morning.

 

Boats will be put in the Winnebago River near 12th Street.

 

Pals is encouraging people along the Winnebago to be observant.

 

“If they see anything suspicious, they can give us a call,” Pals said.

 

The Sheriff’s Department telephone number is (641) 421-3000.

 

 

We have had the luck of having two dogs from you.  First the son of Falco, 'Kramer' (who is gone now), and our newer, 1 year old 'Ely', Falco's grandson.  Ely is a SUPER dog.  Everything we could ever want.  He is so calm, attentive, affectionate, and just an all around great dog, not to mention dropped dead gorgeous.  We will send you a picture sometime.  He gets so much attention everywhere we go, even among GSD owners. 

 I haven't checked your webpage for a few months.  I'm sorry to hear of Falco's death.  What an amazing line of dogs he's created.  Last year just after we got Ely I was at a frisbee event where rescue dogs were being shown going through their pace too.  I stopped a rescue GSD owner and mentioned how beautiful their dog was and how much it looked like our Kramer.  They were surprised when I asked them if they had gotten it from you.  That beautiful face of Falco is obvious when you have looked at as many GSD as I have.

Again, sorry about Falco, and good luck with all of your efforts to keep the GSD as great as ours have been.

Mike and Lisa Nyman 

 

i Robin,

 

I don't know if you remember me, but I drove from MD to get Sampson my puppy.

  

My little guy is 94 pounds lean. He is very good with people and other animals but knows to act like he's crazy when somebody comes to the door. He's very good.

 

We train him mostly at home. Take him for long walks for his energetic long body.

He has long legs and big feet still.

 

Sampson is gorgeous and as soon as I get new pictures developed of him I will send some new ones.

 

He is not the little puppy I picked up.

 

He and I used to butt heads when I broke my ankle and was laid up. But now we're getting back into a nice routine.

  

Talk to you soon when I can send some pictures.

 

Heather Knuckey

 

Sad state of shepherds

Hi,

I just wanted to say that I really appreciate the new page you have showing what GSD looked like in the 40s and 50s compared to today.  I have an old book about German Shepherds from 1945, and there are some very different looking dogs in there!   Very tall and rangy, like large Malinois.

I thought you might like to check out this link.  It is to an interview with Jimmy Moses, top GSD handler and breeder.  I think it says alot about what AKC show breeders are doing to ruin great breeds like the German Shepherd.  Moses is being interviewed about his dog that is the top-winning show dog of all time.   http://www.thedogplace.com/../library/Moses_Interview.htm

  "He’s been bred to a dozen bitches that wouldn’t get a [OFA] number." 

  This part, though, I found really disturbing:

"Many Shepherd litters you can eliminate as much as 50 to 70% as top show

prospects, either for mega esophagus,  bad hips or elbows, flat pasterns or

such excessive length of upper and lower thigh that the puppies walk on their

hock instead of their feet.  Fortunately, these are things that you can  tell

about when they are pretty young."

  Half of all GSD puppies are eliminated - put down, I assume - due to health

defects?  What horrible statistics.  And he's just talking about eliminating the dogs that aren't "show" prospects.  Obviously they would be poor pets as well if they had these kinds of problems, and working prospects don't even come into the picture.  Poor dogs!

  Notice also that he doesn't describe the dogs as being OFA excellent, good, fair, poor, borderline - just OFA.   This handler is a "celebrity" as these things go, and if he really wanted to, he could be a good influence on the world of AKC and show dogs.

  Anyway, please keep up the good work!   At least someone understands what dogs are really for.

 

Jana

 

 

Letter from guide dog owner!

 

HI Robben,

   Let me start by introducing myself, My name is Amber McLain. I am the lucky one to have been placed with one of your pups that was  donated to   Guide dogs of america. I have  Zest who was raised By Ann.  I thaught you may like to no how she is doing and no that she is a well loved girl who loves her work.  She is one of the best guides I have ever worked. She takes her work really really to heart and would love to work all day long every day if I let her. She has such a loving personalaty mixed with spunk and a real Zest for life.  Her and I live in California  in a city called Van Nuys.  Zest loves loves loves to swim and keeping her out of our pool is one of the hardest tasks.  One really fun storry  I love to tell is of her in the pool.  She learned that when a toy or boan is at the bottem of the pool that she has to dive under to get it. So she will stick her head totally under and dive down to the bottem and retreave  the toy from the bottem. Its so amazing to see. Her other fun pass times include running with my boyfriends GSD Emmy, barking  at me, roling  on the ground with all fors in the air making fun noises,  and she also loves to just lye with me on the bed cuddeling like a big huge baby! We have three cats who all love Zest. However when I first braught her home she thaught it was her job to chace them around. Now you can find her and the  smallest cat sleeping together where ever they are! I was amazed to find that  such a high energy fighsty  girl could bee so lovy     and sweet. It looks like you picked some wonderful breeding  stock and created an awsom dog! Let me tell you a little of her working life. She is trained as all Dogs from GDA. They are taught to guide safely around any obsticul, stop at up and down curbs, find doars, staires, elavaters,  escolaters, busses, seats, and a few other odd and end things. SHe is also taught to bee mindful of trafic and in some cases even refuse a command  if she feels it is not safe for us to cross.  They teach them dorectional  commands such as right left forward back so on. It is truly amazing to bee guided by a Guide who loves you and who you trust. I watched zest being raised when she was a little puppy. I always commented  on how wonderful she was and how I would love to have her as a guide. Never did  I no that two years later I would bee matched with her. It has been a truely  wonderful experience working with her. It has not been easy at times because Zest is a strong willed  dog. We have had our battels at  first but they are becoming less and less. I have been  asked sence I have gotten Zest if she is the same dog I first was placed with. That is because we have become such a strong team that we just flow together  naturally now. I like to explain it like dancing. When you are first starting with a partener  you and the partener  step on one anothers feet and stumble but then after practis  and getting  to no one another you just glide along with no problems. Guide work is the same way and in many ways it is like learning to dance with your dog.  I hope this letter finds you well. Sorry it was so long.

 Amber and Zest

ROBIN-

 

 

JUST WANTED TO LET YOU KNOW THAT MY HANDSOME PUMA JUST COMPLETED HIS- CANINE OBEDIENCE OFF LEASH PROGRAM.

 

THEY CALLED HIM "SUPER DOG".

 

HE ATTENDED DOWNTOWN FAIRS, RESTAURANTS, RADIO-ATHONS ETC.

 

HE DID SO SUPERBLY, HE IS JUST SO SMART AND GROWING, HE'S 8 MONTHS TODAY.

 

WILL BE GETTING HIS CANINE GOOD CITIZEN SOON.

 

 

 

 

 

THANKS FOR A WONDERFUL BOY,

 

 

 

BRENDA

 

Robin,

 Hi, it has been along time since I have talked to you.  Everything is going great with shelby. (She was in your January 10th 2004 litter). She is a wonderful and loving dog, we are so happy to have gotten her from you.  She is doing really well with her training, so smart and she loves to learn new things.  We go through Robin McFarland at "That's My Dog" in Hazel Green WI.  She is the Midwest trainer with Fred Hassen, with Sit Means Sit out of Las Vegas.  We also get so many compliments on how gorgeous she is.  I have attached a picture for you, hopefully it comes through with this email.  I just wanted to thank you very much for breeding such wonderful dogs.  We would recommend your dogs to anyone and hopefully in the future be able to get another dog from you.

Thanks and take care,

Kelly and Scott Klein--Dubuque Iowa

 

 

Just a quick note to catch you up on Nineveh.  Ninna is now 27.5 inches at the shoulder and around 110 pounds.  She turned a year old July 31st.  She is wonderful!  We go everywhere together!  She loves to swim and chasing sticks is a favorite thing to do!  Everyone loves her dearly!  I will send new pictures soon.

 

 

 

I hope all is well with you! 

 

  

 

Laura L. Appleget, Senior Project Manager 

 

Hi Robin,

          I thought you would enjoy reading about one of zoey's/magnum girls. This has been a dynamite cross, with not one health problem out of 6 litters. 1/4 of zoey's/magnum pups are a little on the high drive side, but as stated in liz's letter, controllable, and they do settle down, which is what I like to see. Take care.

 

Jolynn and Furry Friends

 

 

Hi Jolynn,

 

Hope all is well.  We were thinking of you because LuLu celebrated her 1st birthday last Tuesday.  She was a HANDFUL for the first 10 months, and then literally overnight became the most fabulous dog I ever could have imagined.  I truly believe she's smarter than I am!  She went away to a trainer (wonderful man who did obedience training, very gentle, reward-based training) for a month, but he is also an acclaimed police/bomb/drug trainer.  He was BEGGING me to sell her to him, he said she's a "once in a lifetime dog" with perfectly alligned (controlled)drive.  So, long story short, we adore her and she's an important member of the family.

 

We're expecting another baby in December, so we don't want to take on another puppy in the near future.  However, we think perhaps LuLu would like a buddy.  We love her size, which topped out around 89 lbs, at almost a year old.  On the next puppy we'd like to get a little boy, with really BIG genes, one of your hulks.  I just wanted to give you a heads up so that in the next year if you breed a really big litter, we'd like to be informed.  We'll be ready around March.  Last time we opted away from the "lump of butter" and took a more high-strung LuLu, so this time I think we'll go for the lump of butter (perhaps a slightly easier puppy-hood?).

 

Looking forward to hearing from you and hoping all is well.

 

Sincerely,

 

Liz A.

 

P.S. We can't keep LuLu out of the pool, she's a fish!

 

Robin,

 

I flew to Iowa in June 1998 to choose and pick up my Royalair puppy.  You

had two litters at the time for me to choose from and it was an agonizing

decision because they were all so wonderful.  I chose a male and flew him

home to VA; named him Spirit.  He is now 6 years old and is the most loved

and lovely dog.  He has educated several people who were previously

extremely afraid of dogs that dogs can be trusted and loved.  His reaction

to fear is to take it on as a challenge to win that person over--and he's

done it every single time!  People stop me and ask me about him.  If they

know anything about German shepherd's, they know that there is something

different about him.  I explain your policy and vision for the breed and

explain the differences to them.  They are always impressed and can see the

healthy results that appear so correct and balanced.  For the folks that

are not afraid of dogs in general but are a bit timid with German

shepherd's, I tell them that he looks like a German shepherd but acts like

a Lab.  That gives them the confidence to approach Spirit and to become a

friend.

 

Last June, my son married.  There were people all over my house and Spirit

was in heaven!  At one point he was in the corner made by two sofas at

right angles to each other.  There were two young children on each sofa

leaning over him with three additional children on the floor.  He was

completely hemmed in.  One would think he would become nervous, but one

look at his face and instead, he was in rapture!  He would like my house to

be filled with people all the time.

 

By far he's the best dog who has ever lived with me.  He is constantly

impressing people with his intelligence and understanding of the world.  He

totally lives up to his name, Spirit.  He is the joy in my everyday life

and a loyal companion.  He like to show off his tricks--lots of basics but

the one that the kids seem to enjoy is "spin" (around to his left) then

"OK, now unwind" (around to his right).  He works almost entirely with hand

signals which is handy when I'm talking to someone and want him near me or

want him to 'sit' or 'down' or 'quiet'.

 

I was sorry to hear about his sire, Falco.  My heart goes out to you.  I

don't know what I'll do when Spirit passes, but I'll be comforted knowing

that he has more than accomplished his self given mission in life to

convince everyone he meets that dogs can be loving and kind and gentle and

generally marvelous creatures.

 

Thanks,

Marsha Mills (was Sherland in 1998)

 

 

ROBIN-

 

JUST WANTED TO INFORM YOU THAT PUMA IS 9.5 MONTHS OLD NOW. HE IS SO HANDSOME, SUCH A WONDERFUL DISPOSITION, EVERYBODY JUST LOVES HIM.  HE IS 29 INCHES TALL AND WEIGHS 90 LBS. HE IS SO MUSCULAR. I HAD COMPLETED AN OFFLEASH OBEDIENCE COURSE WITH HIM.

NOW WHEN I WALK HIM DOWN THE CITY STREETS OFF-LEASH EVERYONE LOOKS AT HOW HANDSOME AND WELL BEHAVED DOG I HAVE.

I CAN'T BEGIN TO TELL YOU ALL THE COMPLIMENTS I GET.

  

AT WORK AT THE DR'S OFFICE EVERYONE CAN'T BELIEVE I HAVE THIS BIG GERMANSHEPHERD UNDER MY DESK AND HE NEVER DISRUPTS ANYTHING.

THE KIDS LOVE HIM WHEN THEY COME INTO THE OFFICE.

 

THANKS FOR THE" MAGNIFICENT MAN" I HAVE.

 

 

BRENDA

 

I just wanted to tell you how impressed one of our friends who is a K9 police officer, handler and trainer is with Rhea.  He can't get over her steadiness and how calm she is.  He said it's the first german shepherd he has ever seen, owned by a civilian that has that clean of lines.  Of course he would love to get his hands on her for police work but that's not going to happen.  She's our baby and will remain that way.  But I thought it was a nice compliment to you that he's so impressed with her lines and how she was bred.  It's not the first time people have commented on how clean a shepherd she is with no edginess which is what most people are used to seeing.  He did of course say that she's a character which we already knew.  I gave him your name and web site as he trains and owns dogs for narcotics work and search and rescue - he's mostly looking for dogs in the 9-10 month range to be trained but I told him you may know of someone who has to give a dog up that might be interested.  He is very kind and gentle and all his training is based on positive reinforcement only.  He's helping us get Rhea ready for her CGC -  Don't know if you will hear from him but he's part of the Perry Township Police Force and his name is Jeff Turner.  He has 2 search and rescue dogs and 2 narcotic and bomb detection dogs - they are awesome!  Anyway, once again, Rhea has knocked the socks off all the other shepherds in town! :)

 

 

 

Gail P. Lalli

 

Hi, Robin!

 

I still haven't mastered my digital camera and e-mailing photos, but I hope to, soon!

 

I just checked out your site again to see what's new at Royalair. The new puppies are adorable. John and I still have the three pics of Biscuit from the website (from 7 weeks) up on our fridge. These were the first shots we saw of her, and of course we fell in love instantly. She still looks like herself, even though her coat has of course changed completely and she is now 75+ p[ounds and growing at a nice, slow, steady pace.

 

We go to the local dog park on almost every non-rainy day (funny that her mom was Rainy Daze, because Biscuit loves all forms of water EXCEPT rain! I think she doesn't like it because she can't pinpoint where it's coming from!). She is a hit at the park, very popular and everyone comments on what a sweetheart she is. She is universally gentle with other people and dogs; I have only once or twice seen her bare her teeth. She "talks" all the time to us, but plays silently, unless she's trying to coax a shy dog into a round of romping!

 

We've done well in two rounds of obedience training, and have also worked one-on-one with a dog-trainer friend. Biscuit learns almost immediately--it's really amazing. We start a short (4-week) clicker training class tomorrow night. We'll be working on quicker response time to commands, and the skills on the CGC test. About the only command she is not 100% on now is "come here"--she's great at that if she knows I have something really yummy!

 

Speaking of which, she is not at all a "chow hound." She eats well and hasn't had stomach problems since we switched her off puppy chow at about 5-6 months. She likes special treats, especially bits of chicken and cheese, but if she's not hungry I can literally leave treats in her crate and they'll go untouched for hours! She doesn't beg, doesn't jump up to get tempting things off the counters, etc.

 

 Her only "doggy traits" that are not so popular with the humans in the ho useare her propensity to dig up the backyard and her LOVEE of chewing things!  At least she sticks 99% of the time to chewtoys!  Nothing else has been destroyed. Do they outgrow this chewing business? Her baby teeth have been in for 5 months now. She isn't interested in chewing things that don't get chewed apart--only things she can rip up!

 

This is already too long, and I know with dyslexia it's probably not so fun to read--so I'll just say again how completely happy we are with Biscuit. She is just the smartest, sweetest dog we can imagine. OH! I almost forgot! She has been doing some "S&R" work of her own--searching out MICE in our house (YUCK!) and letting us know where they like to travel!  Working with Biscuit's expert nose for help, we've caught three and have at least one more to go!

 

Speaking of which, I'm off to set a trap or two.

 

Good luck with the new puppies and the ones to come!

 

All the best,

 

Betsy Lane

 

 

 

We were to the vet on Friday.  Igrainne was a lean 86 pounds. Gwendolyn is still on the small side. She weighed 78; with the constant playing and running, she is built like the proverbial brick outhouse.  Just stocky.  The reason for our visit was a limp Gwen has had for about a week.  I didn't think it was anything serious, but we went to be on the safe side.  The x-ray was consistent with panosteitis, so maybe she does have a little more growing to do.  We got some anti-inflammatory meds and were told only leash walks and no excessive exercise.  Yeah, right.  Anyway we are curtailing the run and chase the deer game.

 

Temperment wise, Gwen is just different than any other dog we have ever had.  The other shepherds we have had have all had a very down to business attitude.  Sure they love having a good pet, or a game of fetch.  But nothing interfered with the "prime directive" of doing their job, as they see it.  If we are not all in the same room, Igrainne will lay down inside the front door.  This way she has a good view of the steps from upstairs and the front and back doors.  It would be very difficult to direct her to sit in the family room while I read a book and she has other family members to keep tabs on.

 

Gwen has been different from day one.  So sweet.  I have never had a shepherd who wanted so much human touch.  I had pretty extensive surgery early in December, and while Igrainne will guard the front door, Gwen will come and stay with me no matter how long I am in the bed.  It can be a long time, but she just snuggles up and waits.  I know she is a pup, but she views everything as a great opportunity to have fabulous fun. She will take her right paw and gently smack me.  I can smack back or kiss, but I must do something, otherwise I am "wearing" a 75 pound dog.  She likes to lick between any one of her family's toes and watch until they laugh.  Of course, she is impossibly smothered with affection and coddled, even by Igrainne.  Just a kind of dog I didn't know existed.

 

I have always thought that the great dane waited to die until she felt she was leaving her family in competent hands.  It is hard to "prove" anything like this, but I think I had my proof very recently.  I was pulling into the driveway and was met by Igrainne, who for all of her time with the dane waited on the front porch to greet you.  I was concerned about her being so far from the house, and I thought, "Where have I seen this behavior before?"  It hit me hard.  The dane was always at the entrance to our drive to greet or repell. She was eye level to the driver of all cars and most trucks.  People were really intimidated.  And as I watched Igrainne, I could see that she didn't think she had it quite right.  Well there is not much she can do about being the better part of a foot shorter.  Nevertheless, she was giving it her best shot and leaving it for Gwendolyn to bark from the porch.  Igrainne trotted up to the house while I drove.  I opened the car door and she looked up at me with that big Falco nose. Her eyes just asked if she had gotten it right.  Anyway, it was obvious that she had Gwendolyn on the front porch and in training, just as she had been taught.

 

Hope the new house is coming along. 

  

Thanks for your help.  Jo Ann 

 

Hi Robin,

The dogs are doing fine. The personalities are just the very best. I love the female Caia ( Shadow X Silver Mark ). She is fun and inquizitive all at the same time. The male from Donna (Silver Mark X Lacey) is very , very laid back, just a good ole boy buddy. Just what I wanted!

I have a heart problem..... A-Fib. For no apparent reason it goes nuts, the bad ones are at night while I sleep. Caia was at my best friend Sandys ( your mom met her to transfer the dogs) while I had surgery and recoup. She was there 2 months. She has been back about a month. I had an attack during sleep and didn't wake up a night last week. Caia was barking frantically which woke me up in time to get meds in and ward off a trip to the ER and ICU. I know dogs are trained for this, but she had no training. As soon as I woke up and got moving she stopped barking completely and went back to sleep til morning. The bark was very frantic, she is an unbelievable girl. Just wanted you to know