Tag Archives: Traveling with your dog

Most Important Command to Teach Your Dog

Exploring the vast prairie of the Washita National Wildlife Refuge
Exploring the vast prairie of the Washita National Wildlife Refuge

 

The first and most important training command you can teach your dog is to come to you when called. Even if you live in a subdivision and your dog is either secured in the backyard or on a leash there will be a time when your dog or puppy slips the lead or escapes the backyard. By correctly training your dog to come when called can save its life or save you from an expensive vet bill. For example, you are walking your dog on a leash and a cat runs out in front of you into traffic. You are relaxed and not expecting your dog to bolt, thus the leash slips out of your hand and your dog is after the cat heading into traffic. Unless the dog is well trained to come there is nothing you can do except pray.

A Two-Year-Old Patriot playing in Pine Bluff, AR at Dog Show in February 2013
A Two-Year-Old Patriot playing in Pine Bluff, AR at Dog Show in February 2013

You can and should start training your new puppy to come to you when called as soon as it comes home with you. Do this at home and often, have tiny treats that your puppy cannot resist, and frequently say your puppy’s name followed by the word “come”. Every time the puppy comes to you give it a treat and love on the puppy then spend a couple minutes playing. The command to come should always be a positive experience for the puppy and never punish your puppy or dog for not coming. If they don’t come be patient and just try again in a few minutes. The idea is to make the come command enticing and irresistible from the dogs’ point of view and this takes time and patience. Making the come command enticing to your new puppy is done by treats they love, affection, and play. If you do this exercise four to five times a day while your puppy is young by the time you actually start formal training with a leash your puppy will be coming to you directly with great enthusiasm.

Heidelberg's William v Carlie (Jury)
Heidelberg’s William v Carlie (Jury)

Nothing makes a dog owner more proud than when their dog or puppy comes to them during training class with great enthusiasm. Once the dog starts formal training you will first teach your puppy or dog to stay and once that is mastered you can start training using the come command on leash using the three enticements of irresistible treats, love and praise, and play. If your adult will not come when you call it, even if your dog is old, you can train it come with practice and using the three positive enticements. Next time, I’ll show you how to train your dog to stay and to stay for hours if necessary.

Well socialized male Heidelberg's German Shepherd Dogs
Well socialized male Heidelberg’s German Shepherd Dogs

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 that are ready to go home.   Also, please see our web page: http://keystonegermanshepherds.com/
Sincerely,
KeystoneGermanShepherds

 

Basic Care Tips for Your German Shepherd Dog

Exploring the vast prairie of the Washita National Wildlife Refuge
Exploring the vast prairie of the Washita National Wildlife Refuge

Hi Everyone,

There are some basic care for your German Shepherd Dog that every owner should be aware of and that is what I am going to discuss today.  While German shepherd Dogs are relative low maintenance compared to other breeds you will need to trim their nails at least once a month and while doing so you can check the dog’s body for other problems.  After doing the nails comb the coat thoroughly with a straight steel pin brush to remove dead hair.  Check the skin for abrasions, ticks, or other problems.  We sell top quality steel rakes and grooming brushes at Keystone German Shepherds & Kennels.  Often our prices are better than the big chain pet stores and we can ship.

A Happy Well Maintained and Healthy Heidelberg German Shepherd Dog
A Happy Well Maintained and Healthy Heidelberg German Shepherd Dog

If your dog is not eating well (it might be wormy) or if it appears to in ill health or not feeling well, take their temperature rectally for two minutes.  The normal temperature for a dog will be 101.5 – 102°.  If it is high or low you should consider contacting your veterinarian.

A Happy Heidelberg Puppy Litter Resting After Having Their Monthly Health Check
A Happy Heidelberg Puppy Litter Resting After Having Their Monthly Health Check

Heartworm preventive is a must for your puppy/dog or they can die of heartworms caused by mosquitoes. We use IVOMEC beginning at twelve weeks for puppies and of course continue their monthly dose for the rest of their life. Therefore it is a good idea to give them their heart worm preventative while clipping their nails and grooming every month.

It is a good idea to check for ear mites and ear infections every month.  If you see signs of ear mites then treat your German shepherd Dog immediately.  Although since we have started using Advantix and Frontline to treat our shepherds for pests such as fleas and ticks we have not seen a case of ear mites.  Whereas, ear mite infections used to be quite common.  Also, note if your shepherd seems to be holding one ear lower than the other, shaking its head, or pawing at its ear and you have ruled out ear mites as the cause, you may want to make an appointment with your vet immediately because ear infections in German shepherd Dogs are serious and can become life threatening. 

It's Time For My First Heartworm Treatment
It’s Time For My First Heartworm Treatment

The most common symptoms of ear mites: ears appear inflamed/red, ears refusing to stand, scratching on or behind the ear, shaking of head or holding head to one side, and/or visible dark dirt or wax in inner ear (actually ear mite poop).

Fleas and ticks: Nothing causes your dog more misery and disease than fleas and ticks!  The life cycle of the flea is as short as six days in an ideal growing condition.  In other words, a flea goes from egg through larval and mature state in only six days.  To put this in the proper perspective, only ten fleas can become TWO HUNDRED AND FIFTY TOUSAND fleas in only thirty days!

While fleas carry less diseases than ticks, they do carry tape worm eggs that can cause your dog’s health to suffer.  Ticks carry several diseases that German Shepherd Dogs are susceptible to, and if not removed from your dog’s environment most assuredly will cause the death of your beloved shepherd.  We at Keystone German Shepherds & Kennels used to struggle and spend small fortunes fighting ticks and fleas until they came out with Advantix several years ago.  Now we have no fleas or ticks on our dogs.

We treat monthly with Advantix and switch out the next month with Frontline and have successfully eliminated fleas and ticks from our property.  Even our wild rabbits and squirrels are tick free because they use the treated – shed fur from our dogs as nesting material.  

I Am Tick and Flea Free
I Am Tick and Flea Free

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 that are ready to go home.

Ask me a Question and I will provide my opinion.   Also, please see our web page: KeystoneGermanShepherds

Sincerely,

KeystoneGermanShepherds

Hiking With Your German Shepherd Dog

Exploring the vast prairie of the Washita National Wildlife Refuge
Exploring the vast prairie of the Washita National Wildlife Refuge

Hi Everyone,

We at Keystone German Shepherds love to go on hikes in the woods and after 15 years of living in Northeastern Oklahoma, we actually purchased a book on ‘Hiking Places in Oklahoma’ and discovered a wooded 6 mile hiking loop within 5 miles of us on Keystone Lake.  Patty and I took GCH. CH. Kodi on the hike yesterday.  We all had a blast; although, we were not sure where on the trail we were all the time because there are many loops and intersections that were not well marked and I left the map at home. 

A picture of the Hiking Trail That We walk Our German Shepherd Dogs on.
A picture of the Hiking Trail That We Walked With Our German Shepherd Dogs

What a resource for us to exercise and enjoy our German Shepherd Dogs and to lose weight and get in shape.  This trail is rugged and requires coordination and strength to avoid the rugged rocks that splatter the trail.  We were sore and exhausted after hiking for two hours, but we are going back today. Today we will probably take Heidelberg’s Daphne Oklahoman and Heidelberg’s Patriot v Atlantan. 

Another Picture of the Rugged Trail We Hike with Our German Shepherd Dogs
Another Picture of the Rugged Trail We Hiked With Our German Shepherd Dogs

If you are considering getting a German shepherd puppy consider getting one of our older puppies and save a little money on some very high quality shepherds.

What We Did After Our Hike With Our German Shepherd Dogs
What We Did After Our Hike With Our German Shepherd Dogs

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 that are ready to go home.

Ask me a Question and I will provide my opinion.   Also, please see our web page: KeystoneGermanShepherds

Sincerely,

KeystoneGermanShepherds

German Shepherd Dogs (Reflections on Last Year’s Wildfires)

Exploring the vast prairie of the Washita National Wildlife Refuge
Exploring the vast prairie of the Washita National Wildlife Refuge

Hi Everyone,

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. 

Fires Burning Toward Keystone German shepherds & Kennels

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.

Fires at 5:30 PM approaching Keystone German Shepherds & Kennels Property
Fires at 5:30 PM approaching Keystone German Shepherds & Kennels Property

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. 

Fire As It Burned Down Our Neighbor's House and Approached Our Woodlot before Dying Down
Fire As It Burned Down Our Neighbor’s House and Approached Our Woodlot before Dying Down

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.

 Ask me a Question and I will provide my opinion.   Also, please see our web page: KeystoneGermanShepherds

Sincerely,

KeystoneGermanShepherds

German Shepherd Dogs (Our Patriot)

Exploring the vast prairie of the Washita National Wildlife Refuge
Exploring the vast prairie of the Washita National Wildlife Refuge

Hi Everyone,

Today, I am going to discuss our wonderful Heidelberg’s Patriot v Atlantan (Patriot) a Grand Champion, Champion (GCh.) (CH.) Heidelberg’s Kodiak v Queirdad (Kodi) son.   He is also the son of Heidelberg’s Atlanta Natashac, a Daughter of Champion Heidelberg’s Natasha Cheyenne that produced GCh. Ch. Best in Show (BIS) winner Heidelberg’s Oklahoma Natashac. 

A Two-Year-Old Patriot playing in Pine Bluff, AR at Dog Show in February 2013
A Two-Year-Old Patriot playing in Pine Bluff, AR at Dog Show in February 2013

Patriot is 2.5 years-of-old and is finally maturing into a fabulous dog.  He is sweet and smart and extremely confident.  He is the perfect size German shepherd at the top of the height standard at 26 inches and at around 100 pounds he will be a trim solid dog.

Patriot does very well at the dog shows, and as he matures he is starting to get a lot of second place and reserve wins.  I suspect that he will reach a point in his maturity where when he starts winning, and once he starts winning he will fly through to his championship.  He will be finished, and we will look back and say, ‘wow that was fast’ as it has been with most our great male champions.

Patriot is a true joy to travel with.  He never has an accident in his crate and when he really needs to be let out of crate he has whine that is distinct.  When he needs an unscheduled bathroom break all we have to do if we are driving is find an exit let him out and he immediately takes care of his business and then he wants to get right back in his crate.

When we are at scheduled breaks, he is great to let out with our girl German shepherds because he romps around and with his playful nature he encourages everyone to run and play fight.  When Patriot is at the shows everyone gets good exercise breaks.

Patriot Playing With Daphne at a Dog Show in Wichita Falls, TX in February 2013
Patriot Playing (left) With Daphne at a Dog Show in Wichita Falls, TX in February 2013

 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.

 Ask me a Question and I will provide my opinion.   Also, please see our web page: KeystoneGermanShepherds

Sincerely,

KeystoneGermanShepherds

 

Yellowstone Trip and Back to Blogging

Exploring the vast prairie of the Washita National Wildlife Refuge
Exploring the vast prairie of the Washita National Wildlife Refuge

Hi Everyone,

I have not posted in almost a month.  I am hoping to be able to post on more frequent basis.  Well, we returned and have recovered from our fabulous Yellowstone trip.  Were we did nine hikes out of 11 days in Yellowstone.  Our shortest hike was 3.5 miles and our longest 7.5 miles with most in the 5 mile range.  These were not flat strolls, but up and down the mountain hikes at approximately 7,500 to 8,500 feet elevation.  We returned very fit and very tired!

Bison Calve and Mom
Bison Calve and Mom
Mountain Pass Trail Called the Picnic Trail
Mountain Pass Trail Called the Picnic Trail

 

A badger on the Lost Lake Trail that Was Determined Not to Let Us Pass
A badger on the Lost Lake Trail that Was Determined Not to Let Us Pass

 

An Antelope on Another Mountain Pass Trail
An Antelope on Another Mountain Pass Trail

 

A Very Rare Close Encounter With A Rocky Mountain Sheep Ewe
A Very Rare Close Encounter With A Rocky Mountain Sheep Ewe

Upon our return, I had grass two to three feet high, which took me a week to mow because both mowers decided to repeatedly breakdown.  This week, the start of July, we will be spending time grooming and heart worming all our dogs.  Being the July 4 weekend we are also filled with boards, which are customer’s dogs that we are kenneling while customers are on vacation.  These are some of my excuses for not posting, but as promised, I will post more frequently.

We did miss our dogs in Yellowstone and many times while hiking, we wished that Grand Champion Kodi could have been with us.  However, given that there are wolves and grizzly bears in Yellowstone, it is far too dangerous for the wildlife and dogs to have them come into contact.  Even Service dogs in Yellowstone are limited to parking lots and hotels.

We have a wonderful new litter that will be ready to go home July 13, 2013.  This is both young parents first litter, but they have produced solid temperaments and big healthy puppies.  The dam Heidelberg’s Carlie is from Champion Oliver and the Sire Heidelberg’s Texoma is from Grand Champion Heidelberg’s Kodi.  Crossing Grand Champion Kodi with Champion Oliver lines has proved to be a good breeding and match. Look for these puppies to be posted with pricing on our web page sometime after July 6, 20013.  We are currently accepting deposits on this litter.

Sandy, Our Volunteer Holding a Male Puppy From the Carlie and Texoma Litter
Sandy, Our Volunteer Holding a Male Puppy From the Carlie and Texoma Litter

Ask me a Question and I will provide my opinion.   Also, please see our web page: KeystoneGermanShepherds

Sincerely,

KeystoneGermanShepherds

Traveling Tips for Your German Shepherd Dog Continued

Exploring the vast prairie of the Washita National Wildlife Refuge
Exploring the vast prairie of the Washita National Wildlife Refuge

Hi Everyone,

Traveling with your German Shepherd Dog can be easy and enjoyable when you and your dog are prepared for the trip.  German Shepherd Dog, puppies or adults can be extremely sensitive to the water that they drink.  Water from different areas contain different chemicals and hardness, and can cause your German Shepherd Dog to get diarrhea.  Therefore, it is well worth the effort to travel with water from your house for your German Shepherd Dog.  An alternative to this is to purchase distilled water.  When we are traveling to dog shows, we may have as many as eight adult dogs in our van.  This many dogs makes it impossible to carry enough water from home for a four or five day trip.  We have found that the dogs do well on distilled water and they never get runny stools from the water.

Enjoying a Break while on the Road
Enjoying a Break while on the Road

I discovered this years ago while at a dog show with seven German Shepherd Dogs in West Texas where the local water was high in sulfur.  I as well as all seven German shepherds had upset stomachs.  I purchased distilled water and everyone got well within one day.  Also, if your German Shepherd Dog does develop runny stools while traveling, four or five table spoons of Dannon plain white yogurt added to their food will calm their upset stomachs. 

Traveling with your German Shepherd Dog’s food is easy with a little planning and preparation.   I recommend bagging daily rations of dry-food in Ziploc baggies.  This way you will not run out of food before your travels are done and you are not hauling extra food.  You also can precook carrots and eggs and place these in Tupperware and keep them cool in a small doggie ice chest along with your yogurt and canned meet.  Vitamins and cod liver oil also be premeasured and placed in smaller containers so you are not carrying extra while on your trip.  We prefer to feed canned salmon or mackerel when traveling.  One 15 ounce should be enough for 5 days.  Be sure to bring a food bowl; we prefer stainless steel because it is durable and very easy to clean in a hotel sink. Also, you should bring a pail that you can hang onto the side of their crate for them to drink from.

Taking Time to Explore While on a Travel Break
Taking Time to Explore While on a Travel Break

Where does your German Shepherd dog ride while in the vehicle?  For adult shepherds the front or back seat may suffice.  If your dog is not crated, please use a dog seat-belt.  This will protect you as well as your German shepherd Dog if you have a car accident.  Even a minor fender bender can propel your unsecured dog into or through the windshield or into the back of your head killing you and your dog.  For traveling with German Shepherd Dog puppies, I recommend a crate that is just large enough that they can stand up and comfortably turn around in.  The crate should be secured to the vehicle so that it cannot become a projectile in case of an accident.

If you are staying overnight in hotels, you should bring a crate that you can place your dog in while he is in the hotel room, especially if you leave to go to eat and leave the German Shepherd Dog behind.  This is because if hotel staff opens the door, they will not be greeted by a German Shepherd Dog and possibly let your dog out of the room when they leave the door open while running away.  This happened to one of our customers while at a dog show in Biloxi, Mississippi.

Finally do not forget to bring a couple of your German Shepherd Dog’s favorite toys.  Traveling is stressful to your dog and having a couple of their favorite toys in evening will allow them to unwind while you watch television to unwind.  Enjoy your travels with your German Shepherd Dog and be safe on the road.

Traveling with Your German Shepherd Dog
Grand Champion, Champion Heidelberg’s Kodiak v Qeridad Ready for Another Road Trip

 Ask me a Question and I will provide my opinion. Also, please see our web page: KeystoneGermanShepherds

Sincerely,

KeystoneGermanShepherds