Interview with Barbara Amidon

What created your interest in German Shepherd Dogs?

My first experience with German Shepherds was as a young girl, seeing a motion picture about a war dog, “My Pal Wolf” and later for  Christmas receiving a book, “Cop Chief of Police Dogs” by the late Reginald Cleveland. From there, the German Shepherd was a lasting love affair.

As young children, my family lived in New York and Miami. My father worked at Cape Canaveral; he was an Electrical Engineer. My mother was a Head Nurse; she later she worked in the operating room at The Polyclinic Hospital in New York. When my twin sister Jackie and I were ten years old, our mother was tragically killed on Christmas Eve. My father then chose a career in show business and traveled a great deal.

We went to live  with my aunt in New Jersey and found a stray German Shepherd. We named him Fury after a comic strip character. My love of dogs began very early, I attended a War Veterans Ceremony in  Atlantic City performing obedience. My hobby was studying various dog breeds. Jackie and I won contests by identifying them.

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Interview with James (Jim) Moses

by D.D. Ardoin

When and how did you get into dogs?

My father bought my frst German Shepherd Dog for me when I was nine. I named him “Nageeb” which is my name in Arabic. My father was Lebanese and my mother was French Canadian. I fnished my frst German Shepherd Dog champion in 1958, when I was 13 years old. My mother bred Miniature Poodles and I won my frst all-breed Best in Show with a black Mini Poodle when I was 15 years old. I won my frst all-breed Best in Show with a GSD bitch when I was 16 years old.

When you became a handler, what dogs were popular & what was handling like?

When I became a handler, some of the bet-ter dogs were GV Troll von Richterbach, GV Bill von Kleiswig and GV Brix Grafencrone. I handled GV Lance of Fran-Jo early in my career and he was by far the most popular dog of that time. He crossed well with Ernest Loeb’s Bernd daughters. When I started handling dogs they were judged at a much more moderate speed and they had to have been trained. A good dog could and often did win owner-handled. Tey weren’t shown 20 feet in front of you racing like mad. I believe that early in my career we had a larger percentage of judges that knew the anatomical structure of the GSD and put more emphasis on smooth, coordinated, correct movement. Today the double handler has a more important part of showing our breed than the person actually handling the dog.

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Interview with Dave Rinke

How did you get started in German Shepherd Dogs?

We used to have dogs around the house at my folks place all the time. We had a Cocker Spaniel and another time a black Lab. We were about to get another dog and I decided to buy a German Shepherd, because they were kind of a macho dog and a good thing to have around. So I bought a little female German Shepherd and I don’t remember whether she had papers or not. She only lived about a month before she died of distemper.

sm martha velvetNot to be deterred, this time I spent “big bucks” and got one with papers. He was a $50 dog but since a bag of dog food was about $5, he was a semi-expensive dog. He was a pretty nice dog; particularly in temperament. I ended up taking him down to the GSDC of Minneapolis and St. Paul for training. I had bought a Goldbecker and Hart book and I was convinced he was a Grand Victor. Like all neophytes, it appeared to me that he had it all!  I remember Helen Miller Fisher deflating me just a touch. After I ran him around a little bit, she said he would probably be best suited for obedience.

Read more: Interview with Dave Rinke