Welcome to The Shephaven Kennels Guardianship Program information page. Here you will find puppies that are currently available for placement in a home as part of our Guardian Home Program. You will also find lots of great information about the program and how it can both benefit your family, and our breeding dogs.
Guardian Home: Must live within 3 hours from Whakatane, NZ
Puppies currently available for Guardian Homes
We are not currently looking for a guardian home for any of our puppies. Please visit our current and For Sale / litter pages for puppies that are available for pets or breeding.
What Is the Guardian Home Program
Our Guardian home program is a great opportunity for people to have one of our puppies and for our breeding dogs to live in a loving family as well as being part of our breeding program.
There are benefits both to the puppy being placed and the family who is adding the puppy.
Benefits to the Guardian Home Family.
Families can have a top quality German Shepherd.
Guardian puppies are the pick of the litter chosen by the breeder.
Shephaven provides additional ongoing support and communication.
You can schedule your family trips during breedings /whelpings without the cost of boarding your adult dog as they come back to our home at those times.
Benefits to the Breeding Dog
The dogs are raised as pets in a caring loving home throughout his or her breeding career and are not re-homed after his/her breeding career is over.
We want each of our breeding dogs to be part of a family where they are loved and adored. By keeping the number of dogs living full time with us to a minimum we can ensure that each of our dogs get the love and attention that they need as well as contributing to the betterment of the German Shepherd breed. This is why we love having the opportunity to place our puppies in Guardian homes.
The dogs get to be a family pet and get spoiled! The Guardian home is the puppy/dog’s forever home. They live with their family at all times and Shephaven Kennels has breeding rights for a set amount of time (each situation is slightly different so we prefer to work out specific details with each family on an individual basis.) Once the Guardian dog has completed his/her breeding career, he/she will be spayed or neutered at our expense, and the dog will remain a forever pet of their Guardian family!
With a female breeding dog, when she visits us for breeding purposes she is usually here for a few days. She’ll then come back to stay with us to deliver her puppies and will remain with us until her puppies are weaned.
Male breeding dogs will be come back to us from time to time to mate with one of our girls and is usually here for a few hours.
Is There a Cost Involved to Be a Guardian Home?
Yes, there is an initial cost as we do not give our Guardian dogs or pups away. The cost of a Guardian Home dog or puppy is standard pet puppy price.
Any “breeding related” medical costs for the Guardian dog is paid for by Shephaven Kennels. Our Guardian Homes are only responsible for the costs associated with having a pet like: vaccines, feeding a high quality dog food , grooming, flea/tick prevention, training, regular exercise and socialization, and most importantly all the love and care and attention possible.
The process for Guardian dogs families.
Most of our dogs/pups that available for our Guardian Program will be females but occasionally we will have males available.
If you are applying for a young adult, or mature Guardian dog, she/he will come to you completely health tested, and depending on her age and the number of litters she has had, may only be needed for one more breeding prior to her being spayed and released solely to you as your forever pet.
When the Guardian dog is in season, the Guardian family is required to contact us immediately. An intact female usually has a heat cycle that will last 21 days. During this time, she will need to come back to us for breeding related appointments. Once she has had her puppies she will go back to her Guardian family until one week before the puppies are expected when she will come back to us. She will stay here until the puppies are fully weaned which will be at least until they are 6 weeks old. We understand this will seem like a long time so Guardian families are welcomed and encouraged to visits while their Guardian dog is living with us in our home.
If you are applying for a Guardian Home puppy, she will come to live with you at 8 weeks of age. During the first year, Shephaven Kennels will have her health testing completed and once we receive all of her results we will assess and decide whether or not she will enter our breeding program (this decision is solely made by us at Shephaven Kennels) If for any reason we decide not to breed with your Guardian puppy the puppy will be spayed by you and she will remain your forever family pet.
If you are receiving a Guardian puppy, during the first year we ask for monthly photos and updates so we can watch her development and update our website. We also visit our Guardian family’s home every few months during the first year to assess the Guardian puppy and build a relationship with her to make it easier for her when she comes to live with us. Occasionally, we ask our Guardian families to bring the puppy to us for a visit so she knows our home and will be comfortable when she stays here to have her babies.
How Many Litters Will A Guardian Female Have?
We assess each dog individually before deciding how many litters they will have. Most of our Guardian dogs have 1 or 2 litters however this depends whether you have an adult Guardian dog that has already had a litter or whether you have a Guardian puppy entering our breeding program. Female Guardian puppies placed in a Guardian home will have no more than 2 litters. The health and well being of our breeding dogs is a priority to us.
What Are The Requirements to Become A Guardian Home?
To be considered as a Guardian Home for one of our breeding dogs, we require that you live within 3 hours of our home, which is Whakatane, Bay of Plenty NZ. You must have fencing that will provide a safe and secure environment for the Guardian dog/puppy, own your own home and have a schedule that means your dog will not be left alone for extended periods of time. All dogs and pups placed in Guardian families must be mainly indoor dogs. Guardian families must have reliable transport and a willingness to bring the Guardian dog/pup to us when needed throughout the year.