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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This is about Family Dobes and Steve Parsons. Haters, trolls and fanboys need not apply. I am looking for truly objective material that is constructive. Additionally, it would be helpful if only folks with firsthand experience or those that can give very constructive, and supported accounts respond. I have read many that either do not know what they are talking about or are just speculating. I have spent the better part of today reading this forum, specifically regarding Family Dobes and Steve. Personally, I am sick to my stomach. What a waste of my life trying to find real info. I believe some of you have it, but the serious amount of stuff I had to wade through to get anything truly helpful, was ridiculous.

My current position is I have already made a deposit for a pick in the current litter of Steve's. However, I am doing more research still. And I feel Steve, despite not being in the agreement, would consider my reservations and refund. However according to some on this forum, I am the idiot for not doing a better job beforehand and being the sucker. The reason I skipped over most of this site before was because I found it so hard to get anything helpful, through all the negativism. So I did other Google searches instead. However, I was struck with a conviction for more prudence this morning and so I dove in today into the threads.

A couple of other disclaimers. I am one of those novices. And while I had a Doberman growing up at an early age, I have never been responsible for one. I will be soon. I am a fast read, but there is a lot of info out there and some from shady agendas on both sides of the fence. I also have a very open mind. Also, please do not reference another thread. I have read them all unfortunately - those since 2010 to now, especially the most referenced one called "Family Dobes, AZ, UTAH". A little feedback - that is one of the most painful threads to try and get anything constructive from - period. Shame on those that think that closes the case. Another word of wisdom. People I don't know, screaming in a forum to run from Steve is not helping anyone. No, "you" did not convince anyone of crap and I am not the idiot if I proceed forward, just because whoever you are say I shouldn't - clearly qualify your position - and your number of posts don't give you clout. This is common sense and why forums exist as great research tools.

Moving on, it is clear pretty much anyone on here with an opinion of Steve and Family Dobes, has a negative one. So I know what to expect in response. However, I am hoping I can get still get some truly insightful info despite that. It is clear many on here are passionate and feel like guardians of the breed - that is commendable. Few have actually said it, but I think I am beginning to understand why there are so many ad hominem attacks with little to no support for the claims. I believe the underlying issue is simply that Steve is deemed a commerical breeder, thus damaging the beloved breed. Is this true - is that the primary issue?

If so, allow me to ask this then. Is there anything Steve could do differently as a breeder, to improve his breeding perception, other than limit the litters/year and/or possibly make less per pup? I suspect the answer is "no", but an explicit answer will help me sort out most of what I read today.

Another thing that would help is if someone would actually define what is widely accepted to be a non-commerical breeder. That definition would help me a lot. I have seen posts that say only 1-2 litters a year to 3-4. Where is the line? Related, what is the fundamental issue with the number of litters?

What other primary, concrete issues should I be concerned about? Also, please leave out criminal concerns not related to dog breeding or honest business.

To illustrate what I think is helpful feedback, let me give you one example of something truly refreshing I read. Of the several hundred posts I read today, there have only been a couple I felt did the forum a true service on this topic. One of them was by Leliel on 6/8/10 in this thread: http://www.dobermantalk.com/breedin...es-great-breeder-great-dogs-2.html#post708369 Now that was very helpful.

Lastly, where would you turn me to, if I am very enthralled with the Euro Std and Euro lines (esp Obi Wan Kenobi - would take him as-is if I could), but want more local support/reassurance not likely to get with a direct import?

Thank you so much and hopefully I haven't offended too many folks :\
Mike
 

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Hi there!
I don't have personal experience with Family Dobes, but as I'm sure you've gathered they are a little infamous around here.

If you are looking for someone to justify your choice and make you feel good about your decision, I sorta doubt you're going to get it. Yes, some posts can get really snarky, but there is also a good degree of honesty to be found in the threads you have read through. I find it interesting that the only thread you list as refreshing, helpful feedback, is one of the few that actually has anything good to say about Family Dobes. It makes me think that you've already made up your mind, which I hope you haven't, because you can do better.

I suggest reading over this resource. I'm new to dobes as well and made an uneducated choice with my first girl. This link was really helpful to me, and I wish I had read it before buying a puppy.

Buying Guide - Glengate Reg'd Doberman Pinschers
 

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I'll start out saying that I am not a family dobes fan, but that being said I will put that aside and give you what little information I do know of him from 3 dogs I have seen of his.

I don't want to nor am I looking for an argument either, if your commited to this breeder, your commited and it isn't my job or intention to change your own personal and allowable opinion.

One of our clients has/had three of his dogs, 2 red males and a back and tan female

We had been treating the younger male for demodex for about 2 months and 2 rounds of ivermectin. One of the worst cases our clinic has seen and this dog who was a year when he saw us over the summer, had the problem since he got him as a puppy.

He did knowlingy sell this client this second male knowing he had another male, both to be kept intact. As i'm sure you know there is a great deal of same sex aggression in the breed especially between males.

This older male, was just shy of 5 if I am remembering correctly, the entirety of the time we saw him, again a few months. He passed over the summer of DCM.

The new female, 3 months old when we last saw her, again over the summer, was sold knowingly going to be kept intact with 2 intact males around. Not anything I'm against if you are a knowledgeable owner and have proven as such and this owner wasn't. She was sold as vwd clear, and is in fact a carrier though thankfully not affected.

They are all nice dogs, and in my personal opinion are beautiful minus there over american standard and again personal preference oversized/too heavy bodies.
(If you like it then that's what matters as it is a puppy for you not anyone else)

Again, this is all straight information I know on the dogs, I have at very least tried to keep my bias aside. Take it as you will and good luck with whatever you decide to do. Though I must end with the importance of dcm and cardio testing as well as looking at the longevity in lines if you favor the current european style of dogs. Again personal oppinion but I am not liking what I see health and longevity wise in the lines that are currently out there.

Again good luck and enjoy the new puppy wherever you get it from!

P.s. the commercial breeding to me is that his breeding program is what he is relying on financially and that is his "business",
as far as your question about litters, a breeder who has a lower number of litters a year, usualllly (not always) is better because it shows their care to find the right pairings, do appropriate testing, raise the pups, find them homes, have the space to take back dogs they have sold for whatever reason they need to be returned, and let their bitches rest between litters and fully recover.

Question for you to think on, not necessarily answer, but you asked several, i can ask one.

How do think one person can honestly be personally involved on a close level, and know, love, and devot himself to 22 dogs all at once, with 2 litters already this year, and 3 other dogs listed under "available dogs" grand total=25 plus puppies. I personally couldn't have that many and love, know, train, and spend enough time with all of them in a day like most trully good breeders can.....Food for thought
 

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From previous threads you already have all of the information you need. As the first poster already mentioned, if you are looking for someone to justify your choice, you won't find it here. What you will find are various accounts of this guy lying to people, selling sick dogs or dogs that die at a young age, over-breeding, etc.

There's no "hard and fast" rule for the number of litters per year that a reputable breeder will have, but I believe the DPCA recommends no more than 4. And I will say 4 is an awful lot for most reputable breeders. Most are more likely to have 1-2 in a year if they have one at all.

The obvious answer to your question about what Steve could do to become a more reputable breeder is that he could title and health test his dogs, which he'll never do. Even if he DID begin to title and health test his dogs, and breed them SELECTIVELY and responsibly, he would likely never be accepted in the doberman world since people have long memories in this hobby. He's not "ignorant" of the ways he could become a better breeder. He chooses not to, because being a reputable breeder is time-consuming and expensive, and his dogs are nothing but a paycheck to him.

ETA: There are several reputable Euro breeders on this forum who will hopefully chime in with a suggestion for you about obtaining a well-bred and healthy pup.
 

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This is a forum that supports ethical breeding and you may not like what you hear from us. If you don't and you want to feel good about your decision there are other forums you can visit that will support you. Be aware that users on DT are certainly allowed to post any pertinent information in this thread whether it "bashes" said breeder or not. I will be watching this thread closely, as it's borderline "trolling" already.
 

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MOATS
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I may be spitting in the wind here, but see below in blue.

If so, allow me to ask this then. Is there anything Steve could do differently as a breeder, to improve his breeding perception, other than limit the litters/year and/or possibly make less per pup? I suspect the answer is "no", but an explicit answer will help me sort out most of what I read today.

Let's see, aside from the obvious quantity issue, let's talk about 2 major quality issues...

1)health test all of the dogs all of the time. I just went to his site, I have a very hard time believing that if all of the dogs were up to date on their health testing that it wouldn't be plastered all over his site. Also, he could stop breeding his bitches back to back to back to back and then re-selling them to other breeders once he no longer has a use for them.

2)actually title his own dogs with something other than a BH. He himself has not personally achieved more than a BH. Anything more than that the dog was imported already titled. How can one claim to produce great working prospects if one doesn't actually have that experience and if the dogs being bred aren't being tested / proven in said venue?




Another thing that would help is if someone would actually define what is widely accepted to be a non-commerical breeder. That definition would help me a lot. I have seen posts that say only 1-2 litters a year to 3-4. Where is the line? Related, what is the fundamental issue with the number of litters?

1,2,3,4 doesn't even touch the number of litters / puppies he's pumping out. I tallied it once before (it's all on the website by the way). I just did a quick count again, so I may have missed some, but it looks like this:

2007 = 6 litters
2008 = 8 litters
2009 = 14 litters
2010 = 14 litters
2011 = 16 litters
2012 = 3 litters on the ground and 4 more announced (and we're only 2 months into the year)

There's been nearly 400 puppies produced in just about 5 years, anyway you slice it that's not even close to the 1-4 litters per year people put out there are being as being in the acceptable range.


What other primary, concrete issues should I be concerned about? Also, please leave out criminal concerns not related to dog breeding or honest business.

I would be concerned about 1) health and 2) temperament.

To illustrate what I think is helpful feedback, let me give you one example of something truly refreshing I read. Of the several hundred posts I read today, there have only been a couple I felt did the forum a true service on this topic. One of them was by Leliel on 6/8/10 in this thread: http://www.dobermantalk.com/breedin...es-great-breeder-great-dogs-2.html#post708369 Now that was very helpful.

Lastly, where would you turn me to, if I am very enthralled with the Euro Std and Euro lines (esp Obi Wan Kenobi - would take him as-is if I could), but want more local support/reassurance not likely to get with a direct import?

Do your homework and research the lines you like, I am sure you can find other breeders with programs that are built upon Euro showlines and will come more highly recommended because they 1) health test and 2) do more with their dogs than breed them.

Thank you so much and hopefully I haven't offended too many folks :\
Mike
As others have stated, you're not going to get a positive review here for this breeder (except maybe from people that like to hide behind the scenes and send private messages so that don't have to answer questions publicly). And, if you've already read the other threads I'm not sure what the point is of starting a new thread? There's enough information here about what most people look for in an ethical / reputable breeder that you should be able to deduce fairly easily how this breeder would be categorized by those standards with a little bit of research and common sense.
 

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Why someone would pay his crazy prices($2500 last time I heard) when you can pay the same price or less from a very good breeder is beyond me. Even at his retarded price you don't get the ears cropped so add on some more cash, also I doubt he does any or much health testing. I think most Euro Doberman breeders in the States charge around $1700 with the ears done and health testing, sounds like a much better option to me.
 

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Holier Than Now
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This is a forum that supports ethical breeding and you may not like what you hear from us. If you don't and you want to feel good about your decision there are other forums you can visit that will support you. Be aware that users on DT are certainly allowed to post any pertinent information in this thread whether it "bashes" said breeder or not. I will be watching this thread closely, as it's borderline "trolling" already.
Yeah, I was going to ask if there was going to be a pop quiz from the OP, on the rules of what we were and were not allowed to say in responding to his demands.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Interesting, the immediate assumption from a couple that my mind is made up and looking for feel-goods. Very interesting after I up-front stated I am not likely to find any pro-supporters on this forum, based on previous threads. I would actually fall over if I was left with a feel-good. I can assure you I have better things to do then take the time to read thru all this stuff from DT today and then open this thread. Seriously, think about it. And a troll ... wow, if that wasn't labeled on everyone that posted anything positive of Steve over the last two years. I haven't even said one thing about Steve so far, other than I think he would let me out of the deposit if I changed my mind.

No instead, I was hoping all the negativism could be distilled into what I believe is at the heart of the hate, with some non-speculative, concrete info. That is the info I want, not speculation like I am already seeing in one of these replies. I believe there are legitimate concerns, I just want it made more clear is all. Why I am here is because of conviction to do the right thing, but based on real, tangibles.

Yes, to those justifying bashing, I get what you stand for. Now define and support it. Post all you want, but unless you like to just add to the post counter, please add support and stay constructive. This is an honest inquiry, so I better understand the decision I am about to make, one way or the other. But really, if this is just a cliche, let me know, and I will pass on.

I apologize for coming across terse about what I am looking for. I guess I am just frustrated on how hard it has been to glean the real meat of the protests. But as for why open this thread? No, I am sorry, the other threads are wasteful due to the lack of constructiveness. And they just left me confused as some naysayers were pretty suspect themelves; there is generally more to every story - learned that in Critical Thinking class. You may not trust me, but I also don't know you either, so am having to vet everything that is said and possible motives.

I can move on from Family Dobes, but tnh317 said do the research to find other Euro breeders - well I am trying. I don't want an import and so far, that is the only option I have seen, if say, working with the Betelges Kennel sires. Others?

Also, thank you tnh317 for some of the responses, that helps some with more tangibles.

Cheers,
Mike
 

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I can move on from Family Dobes, but tnh317 said do the research to find other Euro breeders - well I am trying. I don't want an import and so far, that is the only option I have seen, if say, working with the Betelges Kennel sires. Others?
Where are you located? Are you willing to travel? Are you willing to have a puppy shipped (but not imported) to you?
 

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If importing a dog is your only option, then I don't believe you've researched enough. If you are dead set on a Euro bred dog, there are plenty of breeders in the United States.

Check out the breeder referral/directory on the UDC website, or breeder links on a working Doberman forum. Keep in mind, some of these breeders may be more interested in serious sport/work homes, but there should be "pet" quality puppies in most litters if you have no intention to do either.

Official Website of the United Doberman Club

ETA: Not quite sure why the working Doberman forum link was censored, so I removed it.
 

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Eat Poo and Die
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I can move on from Family Dobes, but tnh317 said do the research to find other Euro breeders - well I am trying. I don't want an import and so far, that is the only option I have seen, if say, working with the Betelges Kennel sires. Others?

Also, thank you tnh317 for some of the responses, that helps some with more tangibles.

Cheers,
Mike
All we know is that you like Euro dogs; but not really a specific type. Working, show.... What do you plan to do with your dog? Any examples of dogs you like and why/what aspects of them you like?
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I didn't quite say that. I am sure there are others out there, but I am admittedly having a hard time navigating what I am looking for. I can follow your link tho and see. But I am very picky unfortunately. I love the large-boned Euro lines. I had a warlock as a boy (not condoning it) so I like larger frames, but of course, I have no intent of being outside the FCI std.

I was encouraged about DreamValley getting Gino for $1,500 but that was an import. By the way, I used a pic of Gino as a guide for what I am looking for. That is how I ended up actually really falling in love with Obi. Obi is exactly what I aspire to.

I live in Sacramento area. I was already willing to drive to Utah. So will travel to some extent.

Mike

If importing a dog is your only option, then I don't believe you've researched enough. If you are dead set on a Euro bred dog, there are plenty of breeders in the United States.

Check out the breeder referral/directory on the UDC website, or breeder links on a working Doberman forum. Keep in mind, some of these breeders may be more interested in serious sport/work homes, but there should be "pet" quality puppies in most litters if you have no intention to do either.

Official Website of the United Doberman Club

ETA: Not quite sure why the working Doberman forum link was censored, so I removed it.
 

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MOATS
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...

I can move on from Family Dobes, but tnh317 said do the research to find other Euro breeders - well I am trying. I don't want an import and so far, that is the only option I have seen, if say, working with the Betelges Kennel sires. Others?

...
Try the UDC website, look at both the litter announcements and the results pages. Look the dogs up that are listed in the various pedigree databases (workingdog.eu, dobermann-review, and the DVIN), and you will find breeders / lines here in the US that are based upon Euro show lines, although not necessarily the same exact lines Betelges uses. I personally don't buy into the hype about his dogs, I think most of the Euro show line dogs have a similar look, and to me the look of his lines aren't all that unique.

You can also check out the results page on the ADA site, and again do the pedigree research to find the breeders that are using Euro show lines in the US.

If you do all that, you should be able to come up with a handful of options which you can research further to ensure they are ethical / reputable breeders that you can in good faith support.
 

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Dreamvalley (and pdubois for that matter) did not import their own dogs, they were out of a female that was imported to Canada already in whelp.

I didn't quite say that. I am sure there are others out there, but I am admittedly having a hard time navigating what I am looking for. I can follow your link tho and see. But I am very picky unfortunately. I love the large-boned Euro lines. I had a warlock as a boy (not condoning it) so I like larger frames, but of course, I have no intent of being outside the FCI std.

I was encouraged about DreamValley getting Gino for $1,500 but that was an import. By the way, I used a pic of Gino as a guide for what I am looking for. That is how I ended up actually really falling in love with Obi. Obi is exactly what I aspire to.

I live in Sacramento area. I was already willing to drive to Utah. So will travel to some extent.

Mike
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
OK, I misunderstood. Wasn't she saying however her concern for the lack of health testing in Euro - and that being her primary concern doing that?

Dreamvalley (and pdubois for that matter) did not import their own dogs, they were out of a female that was imported to Canada already in whelp.
 

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Eat Poo and Die
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All in the US:

vom Landgraf
von Luke
Incredible Dobermans
Kansa Dobe
Beja
Kye
First Stryk
Cara
Swift Run
Masaya
von Moellerhof
Wustensturm
de Tejas
von Hess
vom Kondorstrand
vom Zenhof
Bell'Lavoro
And vom Landgraf, von Luka, and Incredible are all very close to you. Sacramento, central valley, and Santa Rosa. If you're looking for more substance, I think Incredible may be along the lines of what you're looking for--their boy, Cowboy, produces the most beautiful heads. They all health test and title their dogs.
 

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I have to agree that it seems like you are maybe wanting to justify your decision. I say that because if you have done as much research as you say on the breed, than merely looking at the FD website should send you running. There's a whole lot of plain ol' crap on there.
Having said that, I have 2 puppy homes that have had terrible experiences with them. I know for a fact that one bought a puppy that turned out to have a severe heart issue. FD agreed to take the puppy back and refund the money. Great, right? Only instead of taking the puppy back and getting it either humanely euthanized or specialist care, this person was directed to ship it to someone else - the next unsuspecting buyer. Real ethical. I have seen the emails myself so can relate this story. Another friend started out with FD dogs and became very close with Steve. I won't relate all of their stories, but they will have nothing to do with him now and there were many, many things that would make you sick.
But in any case, really do your research is my only advice. If you do, than the website itself will make you run. Good luck.
 
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