Until 1989, in Germany, the term Lobenswert was synonymous with the term “super”. It was used by Judges to state that after careful evaluation the dog being referenced was beyond critique, incredible, or just super, in a specific area of confirmation, temperament, etc. The Germans simply love their dogs, and applaud real, professional quality, in breeding, training, etc., as it relates to the dogs. The term was dropped by the SV because it was creating too many political problems. However, before it was dropped, every dog we imported and used for breeding had been stamped Lobenswert on its’ papers for outstanding, or super temperament! It was the standard for our dogs then, and it is now.
In many countries in Europe they separate the Shepherd dog into two categories, Leistung, and Shurnheit. The dogs in the Leistung category are not as beautiful as the dogs in the Shurnheit category are. The reason is that the Leistung dogs are used primarily for Schutzhund competition, Police, Customs, Search and Rescue, etc., and the dogs in the Shurnheit category are used to make lots of money from people who like pets that look like the real thing, outside, and are actually a poor replica on the inside. Outside the Shurnheit looks like a Porsche, and inside they are built like a used Volkswagen. Confirmation is essential for good breeding. However, according to Von Stephenitz and the early breeders of the dog, it should be considered as a secondary consideration to the Shepherds’ primary field work abilities. He felt, very simply, that when you breed for show, money and selling your dog to ignorant public becomes the primary concern, in the process you loose the dog! When I first got into dog training, I did not consider the German Shepherd a satisfactory or suitable dog for me, because most of the Shepherds I knew were cute looking, but lacked nerve, intelligence, drive, and masculinity. Then I saw an add in the Times selling the world’s best German Shepherd pups. I answered the add and bought a puppy from Canada, bred from top working stock. It took one week for the dog to turn me into a Shepherd fanatic…not bad, huh? As a young pup this dog did things I’d never seen another dog do. At four months he protected me from a vicious dog that was trying to attack me. I’ll never forget him, and I have worked with, and bred Shepherds ever since. We breed what the German’s call the Leistung dog. Many clients have asked us if we breed with wolves, because our dogs are very wolf-like, in many ways.
Our pups come from pure, top quality proven all German titled working dogs, only. We do not mix American and German lines, or working and show lines, or moderate and strongly temperamental dogs. All our pups have National and World Schutzhund Champions in their backgrounds. (There are 10,000,000 dogs training for Schutzhund presently, so a dog titled in a local trial is not hard to find. It is the dog that has proven their abilities in National and World Championship competition that shows the Lobenswert qualities.)
Especially in our females, since breeding goes 75% to the “bitch”. We demand outstanding temperament, strong drive, and correct disposition. Having worked with the most knowledgeable and experienced breeders in the world, we have found it universally accepted that the female controls many characteristics for good working ability in her pups. It has simply been proven, millions of times, that if you breed one female with superior instinct and temperament, and a second female with moderate behavioral attributes to the same proven, great working stud, the pups from first mentioned female will be F A R superior to the others. Breeders have also found that by mixing working and show dogs, as many breeders do, you destroy your ability to produce consistent quality of temperament in your pups. You break down the genetic soundness in your pups, and in so doing invite hip, back, and elbow problems, and lesson your possibilities for good temperament.
My breeding program is designed to help meet our needs for top quality Dogwish dogs to be trained as Service Assistance K-9s, Homeland Security K-9s, Search and Rescue and Detection K-9s, and Police type K-9s. Instead of importing, whenever possible, we raise and train our own pups, because it is hard to find and rely on the same consistency of quality from others. The biggest problem we have is keeping them long enough to finish them off without selling them! We have for 25 years bred the best quality working German Shepherd pups on the market. We have bred a large number of litters, and have NEVER had a dog returned for poor temperament or performance.
We have a limited selection of quality pups for your professional consideration. Our dogs make excellent family dogs, and excellent working service K-9s.
The following has been written help you understand and purchase a better German Shepherd pup.
HOW TO DO YOU PRODUCE REAL GERMAN SHEPHERD DOGS?
There are many things I learned about The German Shepherd Dog and puppies, from traveling to Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Belgium, Yugoslavia, France, etc., to compete in the GERMAN SHEPHERD DOG CLUB WORLD SCHUTZHUND CHAMPIONSHIPS (a world wide organization), year after year.
The first Thing I learned was that the German Shepherd Dog is a HERDING dog, not a WORKING dog, unique in its herding background; unlike any other dog ever bred. When they bred the shepherd dog, Von Stephenitz and his supporters first of all chose to breed a dog with a strong defensive instinct. Unlike any other herding dog, this dog was to work from within the foal, as a member of the foal. He would go out after a straying lamb as a brother, not chasing it down using his prey drive, but stopping and herding it gently back into the foal. This method of herding, created expressly for the German Shepherd Dog, separated him historically from all other herding dogs. Because of his unusual instincts and breeding, he could be bred larger, stronger, with more temperament, courage, and biting power, than other herding dogs. Because of the specific instincts they chose, the German Shepherd was less emotional, less aggressive, more balanced, and more usable than other dogs. It is the herding instincts, bred into this amazing creature, that provide the balance, stability, intelligence, versatility, resilience, and faithfulness that hallmark this breed. It is his herding instincts that make the German Shepherd Dog the number one sought after and desired dog in modern dog history.
In 1988 I purchased a dog from Germany whose Schutzhund work was outstanding. He was a favorite competitor for thousands of fans because of his incredible yet controllable aggression in his protection work, his flashy obedience work, and his intense tracking work. When I took him home for a visit, the man who had raised him as a pup turned the dog loose. He instantly jumpedthe fence, and quickly raced for a large foal of sheep. I was honestly scared for the sheep, seeing blood and body parts staining the beautiful grass, and started to call him back. However, the man stopped me, and the dog dove into the foal of sheep, becoming a puppy. The shepherd attending the animals laughed at me, as my driven K-9 played with the sheep with the utmost sensitivity to the animals. He loved them! I watched as he ran, gently herding the animals for the attendant, and obeying his commands. I had never seen this before. I’ve spent 7 years learning with Germany’s Top Shepherd Breeders, many of whom competed nationally with their Police and Schutzhund titled dogs in herding. All my lines come directly from those dogs.
DRIVES IN THE GERMAN SHEPHERD DOG
The German Shepherd was bred to be the ultimate predator, the “wolf like” dog. Colonel Maxwell Von Stephenitz researched the history of dogs all the way to its’ origin, in order to find, and breed a dog whose temperament, instincts, disposition, and working abilities would parallel those of the original dog. His efforts produced a domesticated dog that looked, thought, moved, and worked like a wolf. The German Shepherd is the worlds’ number one biting dog. While many other breeds have come, and gone, if you look at history you will find that breed specific problems have always weeded them out, and left the German Shepherd standing alone. A good German Shepherd pup will demonstrate a proper balance of prey and defensive drives, and can be worked in protection training as early as 8 months using their defensive drives.
Again, as pointed out earlier, the shepherd dogs were bred to work primarily out of their defense drive. When you alter that, you change the dog, and it doesn’t perform correctly. Many avid sports fans, and amateur breeders, choose their Shepherds for an abnormal and unbalanced prey instinct, to chase the ball, or kill the prey. Of course, they also breed these dogs, and in doing so they have created hundreds of thousands of hypertensive, overly nervous dogs, with shallow temperament, that lack the ability to stop, relax, and be normal. Since the “iron curtain” has come down, and we have had the ability to find and openly import dogs from Eastern European Countries, the Shepherd world has responded, buying and using these unusual, better working dogs with herdingand defensive drives, and real temperament. Of course, we turn around and breed them to females with our super prey drives, and shallow temperament, and therefore destroy the genetic possibility of reproducing those qualities in their offspring. The pups look flashy, but lack the ability to do the job.
When I look at pups I look for positives. I picked up a litter of pups today. They were in a yard. We took them outside, and played with them. We laughed, shouted, banged loud toys, ran around, and I watched the pups. Every time I moved they would come and lay at my feet. Some of them grabbed my shoe laces and bit my pants. However, they stayed by me, were easily controlled, and very loving. They were young, but ready to go with me. I put them in my car, drove 2 hours home, and they sat, slept, and watched the road. Nobody pooped, nobody cried, nobody got sick. We got home, and I took them to a play yard, next to a yard with several small dogs who barked at them. Some of my big dogs came over. The pups were friendly and never showed fear. They were normal. I look for, positive, normal behavior, and good drive. I like a good food drive, a good bite drive, and a good retrieve drive. The pups should like to carry objects, possess them, and fight for them. The pups should like water, and not be shy about getting wet.
Regardless of where the pup comes from, or who their parents are, they are a product of genetics. It has been proven over and over by TOP breeders that the ONLY way to produce good lines is to breed for type. By type I mean to breed a dog with specific confirmation, specific temperament, specific ability, to another dog with the same exact characteristics. The closer you can type your breeding, the better your chances of producing more quality pups. When people come to my kennels they find pups, prodigy of older brothers and sisters, cousins, parents, aunts, and uncles. They know instantly what their pup is going to look, act, and become like. I breed for type.
What should you look out for in type? The number one problem in the German Shepherd dog is not the hips, it’s the back. More Shepherd dogs loose mobility, and live in pain because of degenerative spinal problems than any other genetically related disease. The reason is money. People producing show dogs in our breed have found that a long, angulated back gets them a better moving dog. We call them “egg beaters”. These people breed for long back, and long stifle. The dogs are flat footed, with long backs, and skinny heads. They look like something out of a cartoon. How can a conscientious, ethical breeder, do that to this wonderful dog? Having set, front row, for several years, at the National Specialty, and in conference with many of these breeders in America, as the National Schutzhund Champions, we are amazed that they can laugh and brag about the fact that their dogs are limited in intelligence, go from the whelping box to the show ring, and back to the whelping box, and perform better if they are somewhat mentally deficient. We’ve met them outside the ring with their dogs, to say hello, and watched their dogs go ballistic trying to get away out of fear and stress, while we stood there, amazed. That same person, the next week, advertises pups from that dog pup as good for companionship, protection, and Police work…maybe for a frog, but not for me!
Good genetics come through the line, from Grandpa and Grandma, and so on, back several generations, and usually not from the parents! I want to know what the line of the dog throws. You’ll never know that for sure unless you are looking at a pup that comes from a breeder that has been breeding for generations. When I buy a pup I like to see that a specific kennel bred the pup, the mother, the grandmother and so forth. Then I know that somebody has a breeding program with some thought in it. I’m going to get a pup with some consistent type in it, if the breeder has been breeding for type that will limit the possibility of genetic problems. If not, I’ll go somewhere else.
Most litters will show you pups that are large and small, lighter and darker, with significant differences. The normal person will buy the “better” pup, and come away thinking they have made a good “deal”. Most of the time that type of purchase was a bad investment, because, even though their pup looked better, it has the same genetics that produced the other pups, that didn’t look as inviting. When you see a litter, look at all the pups; if it easy to tell one from another in looks or behavior, move on, because what you are seeing is a mix of loose genetic features, like their hips and behavior will be in six months. When people want to see my pups, first I show them the pup that I am going to sell them, and then I take them to the yard with the pups. I put the pup in the yard, and leave them for at least 1⁄2 hour. When I go out they will standing outside the yard, examining their “war scars”, scratching their heads, frustrated and confused. They will usually turn and say “how do you tell these pups apart”? That’s the whole point. If you wouldn’t buy the “runt”, don’t buy anything!
Next, if you are buying a pup you want to raise as a working K-9 in your home, buy my book Amazing Dogs, available through my website.