Today I’m going to offer a short but important basic obedience tip. When heeling with your German shepherd Dog or puppy start off with your left foot. This may be awkward especially for right handed people because most of us will start walking with our dominant side, but with a little practice it will become natural.Starting off with your left foot provides a visual clue to your German Shepherd Dog to start heeling with you. Also, if you have proper leash placement by starting with your left foot the leash should be engaged by your left knee or thigh coming forwards, thus giving a physical cue to your shepherd to begin heeling when the engaged leash pulls them slightly forwards.The other advantage of starting to with your left foot is while your dog or puppy is in the heeling position and in a sit-stay you can move out of the heeling position by starting with your right foot and not trigger your German to move out of the sit-stay position.This is useful for moving in front of your dog to begin a different training exercise such as ‘stay’ followed by the come command.
Remember even if you only have 5 minutes a day to practice obedience training with your German Shepherd Dog or puppy, go ahead and utilize those 5 minutes because overtime it will pay off with great benefits for you and your German shepherd.
This is a quick post today to remind and encourage everyone about the start of our new Canine Good Citizen (CGC) and Basic Obedience Class at Keystone German Shepherds & Kennels on Saturday, September 7, 2013 at 10:30 am. There is no charge for this class and all breeds and ages are invited.The only requirement is that your dogs must be up to date on all their vaccinations.
We concluded our summer training session in August with several owners and dogs passing the American Kennel Club (AKC) Canine Good Citizen Class.Since the conclusion of that class AKC has announced a new advanced level for Canine Good Citizen. With the introduction of AKC Community Canine, the AKC’s CGC program now provides a comprehensive three- level training program for dogs and their owners. Beginning with AKC S.T.A.R. Puppy, progressing to Canine Good Citizen and now to AKC Community Canine, the CGC program trains dogs through all stages of life to be well behaved in society.We are excited about the new program and will match our training class exercises to meet the qualifications of this advanced level of training.
We look forwards to seeing new faces and old friends.Please make it out for our free training.The more participants that we have makes for a better class and training opportunities for all.
AKC Community Canine expands on CGC skills and lays the beginning foundation for obedience, rally and therapy dog work.Many of you with young dogs are planning on moving through to bigger and better things for your puppy, and we thank you for allowing us to be a part of this journey.
Please continue to check out our web page as we post updates on available litters: http://www.keystonegermanshepherds.com/PuppiesForSale.htm. We have several wonderful puppies that we are accepting deposits on, and these puppies will be ready to go to their new homes on September 9, 2011.
Tomorrow, I will return to discussing our young German Shepherd Dogs and the future of Keystone German Shepherds & Kennels, but for today I cannot allow the month of August to pass without discussing a small miracle on our behalf and a horrible tragedy to over 400 families in the Mannford, Oklahoma area.
Last year on Thursday August 2, 2012 a fire was started nine miles South of Mannford, OK when Billy Cloud threw his lit cigarette down on the ground just outside his trailer.The summer of 2012 brought most of the Midwest including Oklahoma a continuation of severe drought that started in 2011 with record high temperatures of 110 degrees to 115 degrees Fahrenheit.
The lit cigarette ignited a wildfire that burnt over 90 square miles and burned down over 400 homes. Throughout August 2 and 3, 2012 the wildfires raged several miles from us at Keystone German Shepherds & Kennels.On August 4, 2012 my wife and I had lunch in Mannford and had a false since of safety against the fires since they raged so far away.Upon returning to home and the kennels, the wind shifted and the fires started burning straight toward us. Late that afternoon we lost electric and could see the fires approaching us.Roads in and out of our area had been closed, and while we had several wonderful clients and friends offer to come out to pick up our dogs and then drive them to safety, they were not allowed in.We were ordered to evacuate, but we would not leave our dogs so we stayed to fight the fires.We thought that we could save our kennels and house by manning several water hoses around our property.However, as the fire approach, we lost all water pressure.The Creek County Rural Water District water well pumps went out just as the fires approached our property.Without water we became very concerned for our own safety as well as the safety of our dogs.
At the time that we had lost water pressure a small fire truck came roaring up our driveway and told us that they only had 5-minutes of water and that they would not be able to save our house.He pointed to the woodlot that was 100-yards away from our house and said once the fire gets into the canopy of the trees the heat would be so intense that our house would just explode into flames.The firemen yelled for us to let loose the dogs from their kennels and to get ready to jump in the pond to save our lives.The fireman said they would be in the pond right behind us.
I was never so proud of my German Shepherd Dogs, as we let them out of their kennels, they remained calm and none of their normal squabbles or barking took place.They all knew that the situation was serious and they all stayed around but out-of-our-way. With the gates open they would be able to escape and return after the fire had passed.
At this time the smoke had grown thick with very little visibility.While only about 5:30 PM, it appeared to be twilight just after sunset.After burning down our neighbors’ houses, the fires jumped Highway 48 and started raging up our property.I will never forget standing in the driveway watching the fireman raise his helmet and start scratching his head.The fires had hit our forest and then began to die down and go out.The fireman was befuddled because for three days he had watch these fires hit woodlots and then just roar out-of-control.
I yelled down to the fireman that I had burnt my property earlier that year in March, burning all the leaves and fallen branches on our twenty-acres.He said that controlled burn had saved our home and kennels because the fires did not have the fuel to reach the forest canopy.We returned the dogs to their kennels, and watched the fires burn around while burning more of our neighbors’ homes.
We were saved from the fires, but due to loss of power, we did lose over 2,000 pounds of frozen venison meat for our dogs, most of the contents of our refrigerators, all four-corner fence posts, and suffered two-weeks without power with record high temperatures of 110 degrees and above.The Water District did restore water service on the 5th of August so we only had to haul potable water one day.
We were spared by providence because I was led to burn my property, which I had not done in about three years. Due to the senseless act of a drunk thousands of people suffered the loss of everything that they owned, and while no human life was lost several animals and even a customers Heidelberg German Shepherd Dog perished in the fires of 2012. Even though I am an experienced ecologist and have been trained in fire management and prescribed burning methods, I learned given the severe environmental conditions that we experienced in 2012 that wildfires can become extremely dangerous and unpredictable. I would most likely move our dogs much sooner and not stay if ordered to evacuate if ever faced with similar circumstances.
Please continue to check out our web page as we post updates on this litter and future available litters: http://www.keystonegermanshepherds.com/PuppiesForSale.htm. We currently have Walker, a male puppy left.Walker is a wonderful highly intelligent and a very quick learner.Walker will be perfect for a family looking for an obedient and loyal companion that will provide home protection.Families with existing pets such as dogs and cats will be a good fit for Walker.Walker is very sociable.Remember that we do ship puppies.
Today, I am going to switch gears to discuss an issue that has developed with one of our long-time friends.Monday, I will continue my discussion of our new family members.
We received a call about 12 1/2 year-old Rocky, one of my all-time favorite German Shepherd Dogs.Rocky has stopped eating and drinking and is throwing up bile.He has rapidly gone down health wise in the last month and it is time to say goodbye until we meet again.
Rocky started his life out as a promising show dog and was sold to Connie who lived in Mannford, Oklahoma.Connie and Rocky were extremely close and did everything together.Connie after a year and half was diagnosed with breast cancer, and so Rocky was boarded out here at Keystone German Shepherds & Kennels while Connie was going through treatment and too sick to take care of Rocky.We got to become very close to Rocky.Connie lost her battle to cancer, but her love and fighting spirit was not lost on Rocky.Connie’s husband gave us Rocky after her death because Rocky presence was just too painful of a reminder of Connie.
When Rocky came to stay with us he was not the same after Connie’s passing.Rocky was very depressed and grieving.We decided the best thing for Rocky was find him a good home with children that could take his mind of his loss.We re-homed Rocky to such a family, and Rocky began to recover from his grief.Now ten years later after a wonderful and spoiled life, Rocky will be reunited with Connie.I imagine that they are taking one of their long walks along a beautiful mountain stream.
Losing your best friend after 12 years is the hardest part of owning a German Shepherd Dog.It hurts as bad as losing a close family member and the grieving process is very similar. I am comforted in knowing that because God loves us that we will be reunited with all our companions someday in Heaven.He will not withhold any joy from us including being reunited with our best friends. I am not going to start preaching in this blog, but there are several Bible verses that support this hope of being reunited with our beloved German Shepherd Dogs.Personally I believe Heaven will be filled with cats and dogs.
Please continue to check out our web page as we post updates on this litter and future available litters: http://www.keystonegermanshepherds.com/PuppiesForSale.htm. We currently have Wally and Walter, two male puppies left.Both are wonderful puppies and Walter has developed in to quite the show prospect.Remember that we do ship puppies.
The American Kennel Club (AKC) requires that breeders permanently mark their German Shepherd Dog puppies with an individual tattoo number or microchip.We at Keystone German Shepherds & Kennels have always tattooed all our shepherds, but about three-years-ago when AKC came out with the AKC Companion Animal Recovery (CAR) with their International Chip, we were quick to jump on board with the AKC CAR program.We now tattoo all our puppies and offer the service to microchip your new puppy for $20.00.
Having both a tattoo and microchip is the best way to protect your new German Shepherd Dog puppy from theft and loss.Having your new puppy tattooed and/or microchipped is the only legal way that you can prove that puppy is your dog short of collecting DNA from both parents and paying for expensive testing.Having a microchip tag on your puppy’s collar will deter some thieves.In addition, in most jurisdictions dog pounds are required to check for tattoos and microchips and should attempt to find the owner before adopting out or destroying an identified dog.This provides extra protection for your German Shepherd Dog if they become lost.
AKC CAR program only charges $19.95 for a onetime and lifetime registration fee, which provides you a web page for your puppy, which you can change and update all your pertinent information, such as moving to a new home or changing veterinarians.