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Shepherd Guide, Issue #011 -- June 10
June 30, 2010


Welcome to another issue of the Shepherd Guide!

Thank you for subscribing. As always, in respect for your time, I will keep these monthly updates short and to the point.

Special note: Looking for a GSD? Please consult a German Shepherd Rescue. There are many deserving GSDs looking for their forever home.

Here is a recent note I received about one of these special dogs.

"I don't know if you ever post GSDs that are looking for a home but if you do, I wonder if you would consider posting about Monty, a paralyzed GSD that was hit by a train in NJ in December 2008. He has been in my rescue since January 2009 and really needs to find a permanent home. You can read more about him, see pix and a couple of short videos at"

BTW, I will soon be adding a section that will allow readers to post GSDs in need of good homes.

June 2010

In this Issue:

  1. In the News - Boy with Heart Condition and K9 Aspirations
  2. GSD Hero of the Month - GSD Protects Owner in Robbery
  3. Training - Aggressive Dog Training Solutions
  4. Health Issue - Keep Your Dog Safe in the Heat
  5. What's On Your Mind?

1. In The News

Derick Lebry, a 10 year old Louisiana boy with a heart condition, is now one step closer to his dream of becoming a K9 handler. Officers from three agencies teamed up to provide him with a German Shepherd puppy.

Derick, known among the officers as "Little Chief," already has his own police uniform, along with a badge and radio. After he met chief Patrick LaSalle of the Patterson Police Department, the young boy with a pacemaker became fascinated with police work.

The agency adopted him as one of their own, allowing him to ride with the officers at parades and during festivals. They even let him tag along on occasional tasks involving less dangerous police work.

Canine officer Irving Chauvin says, "Hes basically one of the guys."

After noting that Derick would enjoy visiting with the department's K9 officers, detectives Jody Foret and Dawn Foret decided to go beyond a simple demonstration.

Dawn Foret, who runs Cops Who Care, a wish-granting organization for children says, "We knew hed be happy with the K-9 demonstration. We had to one up it."

They sought out a German Shepherd breeder, Cpl. Troy Trahan with the Carencro Police Department. Trahan provided a puppy free of charge.

"They were doing something good, and I wanted to be a part of it," said Trahan, who went to see Derick receive the puppy.

The officers first presented Derick with a basket full of large dog supplies. He quickly realized that the items were not meant for his family's two small Boston terriers. And he beamed when he was given the German Shepherd puppy.

Derick named the dog Bella, and would like to teach her tracking skills.

Have something incredible to share about your dog? How about telling us what makes your dog unique?

Share your dog stories here.

Read more stories about German Shepherds in the news.

2. GSD Hero of the Month

Spurs, a male German Shepherd, is this month's hero after taking a bullet to save his owner's life.

Two armed men entered a New Jersey liquor store, announced a holdup and proceeded to clean out the cash register.

Spurs put himself between the robbers and the owner, suffering a shot in the shoulder. The robbers then turned the gun on the owner, but missed.

After they fled and police responded, Spurs was rushed to a close by animal hospital where he is expected to make a full recovery.

3. Training

I received an inquiry from a reader that wanted to re home her GSD as it had bitten her son. I do not know the context of how the bite occurred, but regardless, I urged her not to give up on her dog so easily.

There is an underlying reason that this dog chose to bite. And getting rid of the dog doesn't solve anything.

Had this happened in my house, I would consult with a professional immediately. If that is not an option, there are several online resources that will help you find the root cause and prevent it from occurring again.

Secrets to Dog Training includes an entire section on behavioral problems. A downloadable video is also provided which shows how to untrain a GSD from bad behavior using real-life examples.

Dove Creswell's Online Dog Training Video show you how to earn your dog's respect and offers individual email help with specific dog behavior problems.

There are many resources out there, those are just a couple of examples.

It is widely held that your dog's behavior is always, in some way, a mirror of your own energy and emotion. This is why Cesar Millan 'trains dogs and rehabilitates people.'

4. Health Issue

With summer having arrived rather early in many parts of the country, following are some precautions for protecting your dog in the extreme heat.

  • Keep your GSD indoors
    Dogs cool themselves by panting and can only sweat through the pads of their feet. Heat stress can be physically damaging. Or even fatal.

  • Provide water and shade
    If your dog is kept outside (not recommended), they will need lots of water. And shaded areas. During a heat wave, even short periods of direct exposure to sunlight can be potentially life-threatening,

  • Limit vigorous exercise
    Never force your dog to run (or cycle) with you during hot, humid weather. GSDs, with their strong working instinct, will collapse before giving up.

  • No parked cars
    Even with the windows open, parked cars can quickly become deathtraps. Even if the car is not parked in direct sunlight, heatstroke can occur within minutes.

  • Avoid burned paws
    Asphalt, pavement and even sand get hot! Before walks, test surfaces with your hand to prevent injury to your dog's footpads.

  • Cabins OK - Beds, not so much
    Don't transport your dog in the bed of a pickup. Even without the heat, which can cause burned feet and bellies, this is not a good idea. Your dog can be injured during a sudden stop or choke if they jump or are catapulted out while tied up.

5. What's On Your Mind?

As a fellow German Shepherd lover, I want to hear what you may have questions or concerns about.

What would you like to read about in future issues? Reply to this email and let me know.

Until next month,

If you like this newsletter, tell a friend.

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