Breeding Philosophy

Celhaus German Shepherds

Personality     Brains     Beauty

Cel Hope
4817 Big Horn Ave.
Sheridan, WY 82801
(307) 674-4800
E-Mail: [email protected]


The German Shepherd Dog is a magnificent creature, the premier working dog in the world. Upon seeing one, a person should be struck by its obvious nobility, confidence, balance, and vigor. To be a working dog, it must have besides the above qualities, intelligence, steady nerves, willingness, and ambition. Physical soundness, health and longevity are absolutely necessary.

At Celhaus a dog must have all of these qualities to be considered worthy to be bred. I have West German lines, some show but mostly working lines. My females must conform to the breed standard and have no disqualifying characteristics. They must be vibrantly healthy, easy keepers, pleasant to live with, and calm under all circumstances. Absolutely no dog aggression is accepted. They are extensively screened for health problems. They must pass the following health screenings: OFA & PennHip hips, OFA elbows, OFA heart, OFA thyroid, OFA free of spinal myelopathy and OFA eyes.  They must also test free of EPI (exocrine pancreatic insufficiency) and Von Willebrand’s and hemophilia (bleeding disorders).  When they have passed these, they must also be easy breeders, easy whelpers, and good mothers, and their pups must be vigorous and outgoing, with ears up early and good sound minds and structure, or they are not bred a second time. I look for the same qualities and screenings, plus working titles, in choosing a male to breed to.

I’ve been breeding German Shepherds since 1976. I have 2 acres in the shadow of the Big Horn Mountains which I have worked hard to turn from rocky pastureland into the Garden of Eden. My place is most definitely a Dog Heaven, divided into three huge areas plus a smaller yard and large puppy pen complete with obstacle course.  One of the large areas includes a large training area where I set up agility obstacles.

My dogs are highly intelligent, willing, and outgoing. They have a very special joy of life and meet people and new experiences with fervor. They are just plain fun to live with and to train. They are members of the family, living with me constantly and going everywhere with me. They are constantly evaluated as they grow up and are exposed to all kinds of situations. They are registered Therapy Dogs (with Therapy Dogs Incorporated). They compete in agility.  When I was younger, we also did obedience & tracking.  I am a member of the German Shepherd Dog Club of America and a signer of their Breeder’s Code. I also participate in local breed rescue efforts.

I only have 2 or 3 litters a year so as to give each puppy all kinds of attention and socialization. The puppies are born in the house and handled frequently. Each pup is marked with a rickrack collar at birth and individual characteristics are monitored as they develop. Close friends of all ages visit them from the time they are 1 day old. Once they are three weeks old, anyone can come visit and help socialize.  My other dogs help raise them.  I take the litter to each local nursing home at least once, to a senior daycare, and to the children’s library for puppy playtime as part of their socialization and temperament testing.  Puppies also go to visit shut-in’s and to friends’ homes. As they grow, they are taken to a different part of my two acres each day and encouraged to explore, climb, negotiate obstacles, etc. They are temperament tested at 7 weeks, and that result is added to my observations from the previous 7 weeks to determine the best placing for each puppy.

I prefer placing puppies with people I have had a chance to get to know, through interaction over their answers to the questionnaire and from personal contact.  I will ship puppies by air, but reluctantly, due to my location. I must drive the puppies at least 150 miles to get to an airport, which makes it a pretty hard trip for them.  I prefer to have buyers come here, get to know me and all my dogs, see the cleanliness and variety of mental and environmental experiences the pups have been gifted with, and let me see how they interact with my dogs and puppies.  I also like to have them close enough that I can inspect the pups occasionally and be sure that they are growing up to be good representatives of the breed and are offering no problems to the owners.

I usually have a waiting list. After a person has returned the completed questionnaire and we have determined to both our satisfactions that they can find what they want in a CELHAUS puppy, I place them on the waiting list and keep them informed of breeding plans, puppies whelped, and their development. I ask for a $500 deposit once we’ve done a breeding and another $500 when the puppies are safely and healthily on the ground. Puppies are photographed weekly so that the parents-to-be may be a part of their whole life and also see their personalities developing. After the temperament test at 7 weeks, a decision is made by both of us that their puppy is ready to join their lives. Once the puppy goes to them, a friendship for life begins, with all kinds of support from me, help for any problems and answers for any questions and encouragement.


Given with each puppy:

10# of Holistic Select Large/Giant Breed Puppy Lamb food

A copy of the contract with health guarantee

AKC registration certificate

5 generation Pedigree

copies of OFA certificates and DNA testing results of the parents

Photos of puppies until they leave home

Veterinary health and vaccination records

Puppy packet with all kinds of information on feeding, health, and training.

Periodic mailings, every 3 months until puppy is a year old; every 6 months until it turns 2 years, to encourage puppy buyers and help them form their pup into an excellent canine citizen and pleasure to live with

References, reading/video suggestions to help you learn as much about this magnificent breed as you desire

Full support, eager answers to questions, continued support with any problems, for the life of the pup

Promise of a home here for the puppy at any age if the buyers are unable to keep it or meet its needs