Old school German Shepherds - Page 1

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by 2Cats on 15 April 2018 - 17:04

Hi everyone, I had German shepherds as a kid in South Africa(30 years ago) they lived to 14.5 years old before we had to put my female down. She was the best dog ever, my dad bought her for $25 from the Mining Security K9 department...(dad was a Gold Geologist). She was Black and tan, straight back, great hips, never sick,Solid nerves, She had focus, drive, but was still an amazing pet,Loved children, looked at you when you spoke, listened to all commands, never aggressive towards other animals of any type and yet she was never socialized....Naturally protective over me and our property. She could clear a 10 ft fence no issues. She was a "real dog". I was 20 when we had to put her to rest, We immigrated to the U.S short after.. never had another one after till 4 years ago.

We imported a German Shepherd out of Germany, Boomer vom Polarstern son, Showline...for my niece, then we got about 10 more for friends and family, and 8 months ago we had the Peik and Enoch pups... Long story short....

WHAT happened??? These dogs might look similar to my "Buddy" as a kid but they are WORLDS apart.. They have no focus, it's like they have ADHD, they want to eat all living creatures, they have way too many health issues, they don't even look at you when you talk to them,I am so disappointed.

Over the last 4 years I was looking for the same dog I lost, but there seems to be no such dog anymore. We quit Importing and do not have any dogs at the moment.

Do workingline breeders and owners experience the same change in their lines?

I think that my dog was from the old stock German shepherds, I never saw her parents, only saw the dogs that where there when my dad took her there for a Mating at 3 years old(she bit all males that came close, never got pregnant) The ones ( some sable, some look more DDR, some just like mines was with the black and tan) that where there was running the kennels from floor to ceiling with aggression when you approach, foaming at the mouth, yet stopped immediately and sat up straight when the trainer came to the gate.

What happened to the breed I loved? We are looking to get a Black Russian Terrier a few years from now, some dog breed whose hair we can manage,lol, however I am scared that they might also be impacted by breeding for looks.. Please don't find this offending, I am not knocking Showline breeders or owners, was one myself.

This was my "Buddy" "Laika"

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by joanro on 15 April 2018 - 17:04

Get one like this youngster...these dogs are not idiots, but have the essence of what makes a gsd a gsd...

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by JonRob on 15 April 2018 - 20:04

Well that's the best summary of the deterioration of a great breed I've seen in a long time.

What happened? A bunch of things.

Selection for looks instead of temperament/health/longevity.

Selection for flashy sport instead of the ability to do real work. Does anyone realize how stupid sport heeling is for example, where the dog is prancing like an idiot and paying no attention to where he is going? Can you imagine a guide dog doing this? Can you imagine just trying to walk down a crowded street with a dog like that? This led to breeding for extreme prey drives to get that flashy performance. Biddability went straight down the toilet because a biddable dog works calmly and effectively--all substance and no flashy style.

Endless excuses for bad behavior and character defects. Dog aggression is tolerated and dismissed as "dog reactivity." Insane bouncing off-the-wall dogs are praised as "high drive." Never mind that they have to be kenneled and can't function as normal house dogs. Insane spinners with "great pedigrees" are bred. A dog that screams like an idiot when waiting for his sport turn is praised as "leaking drive." A dog that bites kids is excused because c'mon this is a GSD not a Golden Retriever.

This problem is a real sore spot with me because I try to find real deal GSDs--the kind you had as a kid--for decent folks who are looking for one. Twenty years ago this was not extremely difficult. Now I go nuts looking for one. And I've lost count of the number of breeders who assure me that their dogs have the right stuff and it turns out their dogs aren't even close.

Your best bet is folks who breed well structured, health checked GSDs *without* sport titles, with the goal of producing calm, sound family dogs.

Stay away from:

Folks who enjoy posting pics of snarling young puppies.

Breeders with ads that scream "TOP! TOP! Drives!" "Crazy ball drive!" "Extreme prey drive!"

Breeders who endlessly prattle on about their show wins and change the subject when you ask about the important stuff.

Breeders who insist that their pups need insane amounts of socialization (like 100 new faces, 100 new places during the first 100 days you have the pup).

Breeders who insist that their pups are so delicate that they will develop hip dysplasia or worse if they ever go up or down stairs or play too much.

And I am not going to waste my time arguing about this. If you want a sports freak dog, or a puppy that is snarling aggressively at 8 weeks of age, help yourself. But I'll look elsewhere.

by beetree on 15 April 2018 - 21:04

Yeah, we all have one of those "Old School German Shepherds" memories from the good ol' days of yore! Who was it that said it here, how those memories also come with rose-colored glasses since we were all about three foot tall or so, too.

I guess I got lucky with my Mojo. He's a great dog even if he has been known to be a bit leaky with his drives at times, lol. Not a screamer though, if he is rather conversant— he leaks that living fence drive, lol!

by joanro on 15 April 2018 - 22:04

Well, Jonrob, that right there what you posted is the best summary I've seen about the demise of the gsd, in general. With those points in mind that you listed, I have attempted to keep the gsd a gsd. Here is the same baby,above with the same male dog, now a three year old dog and the baby two years old...the smaller dog is a female one year old, also from me....



The male does have P3 title and the female is being trained to hers...but these dogs are not 'sport bred'....

PS. I am only sharing information that there are still gsd out here that still have the qualities of the 'old time' gsd...I do not have any thing for sale.

by JonRob on 15 April 2018 - 22:04

Joanro, that is a fine video of what a real GSD is like with little kids. Both of those dogs obviously have the kid gene, which means the dog is hardwired not to hurt a child - even if the kid yanks his ball out of his mouth. That is a genetic trait and not trained. Every GSD should be like that. Thanks for posting the video link.

But so many breeders just have excuses instead - "of course he bit the kid in the face, the boy took his ball."

I will use this video to show my dog training clients how a real family GSD should act.


by vom ost see on 15 April 2018 - 23:04

this is a great example of proper imprinting,social skills and solid temperament..bred in,great job,landon was doing the"lil' dude dance",and having a blast!

by joanro on 15 April 2018 - 23:04

You have my blessings, jonrob, and thank you.

The father of the child has two brothers, who each have also started new families. Both are with new babies and both now have a dog each for their respective families, from me, and from different litters....

One dog is a brother to the female in this video, is now 18 months old, is in training for protection.

The other brother has a male from my last litter and is now 6 months old ( littermate to the pup pictured above) and he is training his pup for protection also.

These young men and their new families live in the north east, where they need protection for their families, very strong gun laws so a dog is the next best thing.

BTW, the owner in that video....that male is his first dog he ever owned...not first gsd, but first Dog, the female is only his second dog.

His two brothers who came all the way down here to NC to get their puppy from me....they are also first time dog owners.

Here is a picture of the puppy that is now 6 months old with 'his' little boy two days after arriving to his new home.

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by joanro on 15 April 2018 - 23:04

Vom ost see, I laugh till I cry every time I watch that video...Landon is wonderful!! His dogs adore him, no one except close family members are allowed to get near 'their' children.

by joanro on 15 April 2018 - 23:04

Wallace with his other charge...

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