Jada (was Grace)
GSRNE #165
Adopted in July, 2004 


We adopted Jada (formerly Grace) in July 2004. We already had two male German Shepherds (Bosco & Kaz) that we had gotten when they were 7 weeks old. I had been a regular visitor of the GSRNE website and as soon as we saw her, my husband and I knew we wanted her. After reading her story, we knew that she had some issues, but were confident that ours was the right home for her. Since we had two well-behaved, loving and confident Shepherds already, we knew Jada could take positive cues from them.

As her story stated, she was definitely shy-fearful. After bringing her home we made a conscious effort to introduce her to new people. We also brought her to obedience class where she did very well. She was already very smart and knew her commands well, but the socialization did her a world of good. She still continues to attend class on a regular basis. While she may never completely overcome her shy-fearfulness, she is much improved and has gained much more confidence. She has become so much more relaxed when we meet other people. Jada also was not a fan of other dogs that she would encounter. While she still isn’t a big fan of small dogs, she is doing much better with larger ones, even letting a neighbor’s dog play in the yard with her, Bosco & Kaz.

She certainly does love to play! She enjoys fetching balls in the yard and chasing squirrels that will occasionally come through. She also enjoys playing tug-of-war with Kaz with whatever toy they may have. Of course since Kaz has about 23lbs on her, he can usually slide her across the kitchen floor quite easily. She also loves to “hang out” with Bosco when it’s bedtime and we usually awaken to the two of them sprawled out on the bed in the morning. She also loves to follow us around wherever we go, whether it be into the kitchen for a snack or to the basement to do laundry. Sometimes I think we should have called her “shadow”. We love her tremendously and she has been a wonderful addition to our family.

Kizzy (was Inca)
GSRNE #108


This is the story of one of our placements, Inca (renamed Kizzy), with her handler/owner Cil!

Inca was found at a local pound. As a dark-colored dog, many people who might have adopted Kizzy were intimated by her and therefore weren’t interested. It’s kind of funny, because she’s incredibly friendly and playful, but this happens sometimes. The shelter manager knows a good dog when she sees one, and we were thrilled to take this dog in. Sarah S. fostered this girl and did a great job with her. We were quite happy to place Kizzy with Cil, knowing that Cil would be doing SAR training with this dog who needed a job. Thanks to Sarah’s volunteering to foster Kizzy, Kizzy is *alive* and is doing quite well in her job training.

Update on 12/02:

I just had to brag about my little Kizzy. She is now a Certified Therapy Dog. We did our first visit at a local nursing home today and she is such a sweet dog!!!!! She really related to the people, giving kisses and getting hugs. I am sooo proud of her. She is one super dog!!!

Thank you GSRNE for finding her for me!


Sierra (was Yetta)
GSRNE #060
Adopted in 1999


Sierra was found on the streets of Boston when she was only a few months old. After using up her time at the shelter, GSRNE stepped in and saved her. She came to live with us and sister-dogs Parlay, Cindi and Jasmine in 1999 when she was about 6 months old. She was “adopted” by Cindi when we brought her home, who thought we’d gotten her specifically to be “her puppy”. She is best friends with Jasmine, and they love to do things together even sleeping together in the same bed. Sadly, both Parlay and Cindi have now gone to the Bridge, and are missed by all of us.

Sierra was a Delta Society Pet Partner when young, but as she grew older she became more aloof and wasn’t enjoying it anymore, so we retired her. She has done some obedience work in the past and has earned her CGC. She is now doing agility. She loves it and can’t wait to get to work.

Sierra has turned into an excellent agility dog. She loves racing over/ through each obstacle, and then looks at me as if to say: “That was fun, Mom, which one do we do next?” She hates the neighbor’s cat, who teases her unmercifully, and adores chasing squirrels and chipmunks in the back yard. She is full of life and is interested in everything! She is an absolute joy.

Six years have passed, and she is very much a loved and loving member of the family.

GSRNE #116
Adopted in October, 2001 


When we met Nyla, we were looking for a white Shepherd to fill a huge void, left when we lost our beloved Cain, a White GSD my husband had found in a pound. When we adopted him, 2 year old Cain was only hours away from being euthanized. He was with us for 9 years, and we lost him when he was 11.

Nyla had spent most of her life in a backyard, suffering from constant ear infections and flea allergies, and she was pathetically underweight. She was so ignored by her previous owners that she didn’t even respond to her name, Dakota, when she was called.

GSRNE’s angels took her in, vetted her and set her up in a nice foster home with two GREAT kids. They renamed her, after much thought about who she was and what name would fit her. Nyla now had a new name and responded to TLC given by her foster family.

We met Nyla in October of 2001; and although she wasn’t the White we were looking for, we fell in love on the spot. Nyla is a gorgeous Sable girl. She has high prey drive, so our cats now live upstairs and Nyla rules downstairs. She enjoys her BARF diet and no longer gets ear infections. She weighed about 55 pounds when she came home with us and now maintains a sleek 85-90 pounds and is in constant motion.

Nyla now has an adopted big brother, Max, who was on his last day in a pound, after two time extensions. She took to him right away, and it seems like they’ve always been a pair.

One day, Nyla was being a total brat and not listening to her commands; out of frustration, I said to her “Now Nyla-Jean, NO!” From that day on, she’s kept the second part to her name; it also happens to be my sister-in-law’s name, and they are both incredibly stubborn, mind-of- their-own gals!

Thank you GSRNE for the best girl ever, my beautiful Nyla-Jean, formerly Dakota, # 116, adopted in October 2001.

GSRNE #156
Adopted in November, 2003 


We’ve all heard of a wolf in sheep’s clothing, but what do you call a Labrador retriever in German shepherd’s clothing? We call her Sugar! That’s the name she came with and it fits her so very well. She is as sweet as sugar and has never met anyone that she didn’t like.

Sugar came to live with us when she was 15 months old, a few days before Thanksgiving in 2003, which was very appropriate. With Sugar at our house, we had much to be thankful for. She was totally accepting of us from the start, embracing our home and extended family as well as all the grandchildren. She also came with a few infirmities.

At 8 months of age, while running loose in her neighborhood, she was hit by a car and suffered a broken left hip and cracked pelvis. The only saving grace was that she was turned over to the Animal Control Officer by her owners as an alternative to euthanasia. She received much-needed surgery and was left to recuperate in a local kennel. After spending several months in different kennels, she eventually came to the attention of GSRNE who evaluated her and found her to be a happy-go-lucky, eager to please adolescent who loved life and everything in it! She went to live in Penny & Stephen Cooper’s wonderful foster home and thrived on their devoted attention and care. At 15 months of age, it was now our turn to welcome her into her forever home.

Sugar has lived up to her name in many ways. Even though a year later, she had to endure another surgery and long months of physical therapy and chiropractic care, the ordeal has never quenched her sweet nature or her indomitable and loving spirit.

At home Sugar is crazy about her large plastic ball that she maneuvers with the dexterity of a soccer player. One of our sons enjoys coming over with his son to have a brisk game of soccer with her, much to her everlasting delight! In the morning, if she is outside by herself, she will scratch at the door, but not to come in. She will stand and wait, with a quizzical look on her face, asking for her big red ball. Unfortunately we have lost a few wooden picket fences and lattice work to her eager play drive. If the ball rolls up against them, and we’re not there to stop her, she dismantles the lattice into pieces or takes off the pickets one by one in her excitement.

She also enjoys trying to launch a surprise attack on squirrels. Every morning, as she is let out onto the deck and yard, she sprints out the door just in time to see a wily squirrel disappearing up a tree. Sometimes I will find her sitting on the deck in the rain, patiently waiting for that squirrel to reappear.

Sugar has brought so much to our lives; she is our fourth shepherd out of six dogs. Each one has been a love affair and has stolen our hearts. We would like to thank GSRNE so very much for taking the time and expertise to find us our forever match.

Gail & Ken Van Hoesen

GSRNE #157


Sterling, pictured on the right, is just a wonderful puppy and we love having him and his big sister Luna. They get along great and are always together. Sterling is now almost done with basic obedience with just one day left and then he will graduate and we will go on to Intermediate classes . We have been working with him along with working with Luna, who is all done with the obedience classes. Because of this, Sterling is ahead of his class and the instructor sometimes has Sterling and I demonstrate a command. He is very smart and catches on to things very quickly! He is very good when company comes, he will greet them then lay down beside his Daddy or me for the remainder of their visit. He loves to go for rides, and he and Luna will get into the back seat and lay down or sit. We would like to thank his foster parents, Joe and Deb for the great job they did with him during time that they had Sterling. He is just a great little boy 62 lbs now. We can’t wait to show him off at one of the GSRNE upcoming events!

Tess (was Angel)
GSRNE #154


Just a quick note about Angel (GSRNE #154), who we adopted in mid-November. She’s great! She’s growing into those enormous ears — 70 pounds already, and she’s so long & leggy that she’ll be a big girl when she fills out. We renamed her Tess — she’s a sweetheart, but angel is pushing it a bit. She’s getting along fine with Toby, her older Lab brother, who’s starting to enjoy her despite her ignorance of a proper nap schedule :) . They have a fine time gnawing on each other’s heads and debating the ownership of the sticks they find on their walks. She’s been hiking, snowshoeing and skiing, has started obedience classes, and was a gracious hostess and a polite guest during the holidays. We are still working on a few issues, but overall she’s just being a big, curious, affectionate, goofy adolescent, and we’re enjoying her immensely.

Big thanks go to her foster family, the Snyders, who did a magnificent job with her, and Janice, who’s answered more emails than any sane person would. And thanks to all of you who helped bring her into our lives.

UPDATE: Tess graduated from puppy class and is headed for intermediate obedience classes, to learn focus, and catch so she can learn to play fly ball. She is also learning how to skijor.

GSRNE #139
Adopted on 3-22-03 


On January 23rd, 2003 our hearts were broken when we said our good-byes to our GSD Heidi as she crossed over the bridge. On March 22nd our family was complete once more when we adopted our Tara, GSRNE #139. One only has to look into Tara’s eyes and see her smile to feel her gift of love.

One of Tara’s favorite things to do is to play with her toys. Her favorite toy is her large bone/pillow that her FPIC gave her while she was in foster care. After a hard bout of playing toys she loves to use it as a pillow. She loves to grab one of the many toys she has and will toss them up in the air over and over again. Its not unusual to see her prance in from the back yard, grab a toy in the living room, and return back outside to play or just to lie down on the back porch with it.

Tara is always ready to go for a ride in the car. She loves to sit on the back seat and intently watch everything and everyone that passes by. Its almost like she’s thinking that her days of roaming the streets are over and that she’s found her forever home.

Tara greets everyone at the front door with a smile, a wag of the tail and kisses if allowed. Her favorite person to greet is her Dad, Greg, when he returns home from work. He adores his little “TaTa”, as he calls her. She’ll run back and forth through the house until he sits down and she can give him kisses. Tara’s special trick is to sneak up on Greg while he’s lying on the bed and smother him with kisses and hugs. This is their special time together.

One of the best parts of adopting Tara is also gaining an extended GSRNE family. Her foster Moms and Dads, Chris & Tomas and Karen & Ted; her Foster Partner in Care, Kathy; people involved in her transport; Victoria and Karen for helping us find each other; her many aunts, uncles and Godmothers, including Donna, who always happens to have her camera with her. Greg and I can’t thank everyone enough for our perfect dog, with the perfect name, purple collar, and her gift of love.

GSRNE #123


Makwa (Mack), GSRNE #123, is the latest addition to our GSRNE family. He turned 6 in October. He joins his 4 year old sister Olivia, GSRNE #84.

Makwa’s story is simple, he was not friendly to cats and had to find a new home. He was brought to a Maine area shelter when GSRNE stepped in to help. We had been thinking of adopting a male GSD and were waiting for the right companion for Olivia.

Her happiness meant everything to us, she is a very low activity dog and could not keep up with a high energy dog. When we read Mack’s description and saw his picture we had to go see him. The adoption coordinator thought we would be a good match, so we brought Olivia to the foster home in Vermont to meet Makwa.

His size was overwhelming to say the least. A gentle giant, he greeted us with kisses. The first meeting between Mack & Olivia did not go as well as we hoped. Olivia did not feel comfortable and it was difficult. We left and went home feeling quite discouraged. Would Olivia learn to get along with any other dog or would she be an only dog? We both loved Makwa so much, it was hard to say no. If it was going to work with any dog, Makwa would make it that much easier. It was tough the first few weeks after we brought him home but now one year later they are best buddies going everywhere together. Makwa is happy to be wherever you are. His favorite pastimes are having his ears scratched, going for walks in the woods and howling at sirens on TV.

Olivia has been with us almost 3 years now and she is still the princess. Olivia was found in a Boston area shelter. She was picked up wandering the streets a couple times and her owner surrendered her for fines owed. She was terribly sick with heartworm and extremely underweight when GSRNE found her. They got her the proper treatment and got her back on her feet. Thanks to everyone’s help she made a miraculous recovery. When I saw her face on the web page I knew she was the dog for me. Her story of neglect was almost too much for me. How could anyone not take care of this beautiful dog? My husband also agreed that we should go meet Olivia. It was definitely love at first sight, she was well behaved, low activity just what we were looking for. She has always been number one in the house and it was difficult for her to accept another dog. I am proud of her for the way she adjusted to Mack living with us. Olivia’s favorite things are belly rubs, keep away with toys and staying just a few feet ahead of Mack on her walks !!! Don’t you agree that they make a striking couple??

GSRNE #136


My husband and I have recently adopted a wonderful dog named Tiki. We had looked into adoption from GSRNE after losing the second of our two beloved dogs (one a German Shepherd mix and the other a German Shepherd) last summer. We both love the breed but also really liked the idea of adopting a dog that needed a home so GSRNE was the perfect answer! We were very excited when the call came and arrangements were made to visit a dog that was a possible match for us. I know for me it was “love at first sight”! Tiki was friendly, beautiful, intelligent, had a playful spirit and a gentle manner. She seemed to have all the important qualities that we were hoping for and much, much more. I especially loved the way she scrunched up her eyebrows when she was thinking. We were told that she was healthy but was scheduled to have an operation soon to correct a problem with her elbow. This would require some recuperation time until she could resume all normal activities. We were able to have her a week prior to her surgery so that she could start to get to know us, the cat, and her new home. Tiki came through the surgery with “flying colors”! Her recuperation also went smoothly even though her activity was extremely limited for the first 3 weeks. Not an easy task for a young, energetic dog! At this point, she has fully recuperated and can do all the things she loves like going for walks, chasing balls in the backyard, and playing with the cat! We are enjoying her so much and are looking forward to many, many years of her faithful companionship! Thank you so much, GSRNE.

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