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Ted Hoppe (386) 337-0730

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Puppies Puppies Puppies

on Tuesday, 01 April 2014. Posted in German Shepherd Puppies

Every once in awhile you just have to do this!  Who doesn't love a German Shepherd Puppy? We always share our puppies on our social media pages Facebook so if you are not already a facebook friend, please enjoy some of the beautiful puppies that have graced GatorlandK9 in recent months!

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female puppy available

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Visit our available puppy page and call Ted Hoppe at (386) 337-0730  if you are interested in our available puppies.

Author: Jill Pavel

GatorlandK9 Service Dog Honored in Nashville

on Tuesday, 15 July 2014. Posted in Veterans with PTSD, German Shepherds, Service Dogs, Service Protection Dog training

Veteran Mark Berry traveled to Nashville from his hometown of Caanan, New Hampshire with his German Shepherd Service Dog, NAYA.  During a music benefit at The Stage on Broadway presented by Heart Songs for Veterans, Marks' GatorlandK9 Service Dog Naya was awarded "Service Dog of the Year" by Country Star Sarah Buxton.

Country Singer Ashley Winters shared her song written for Mary and Naya "By Her Side".  

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Country Singer Ashley Winters, Serenading Veteran Mark Berry and his GatorlandK9 International Service Dog NAYA with her original song penned in their honor "By Her Side".

Sarah Buxton and Naya

Country Star Sarah Buxton awarding GatorlandK9 International Alumni  Naya

"Service Dog of The Year" Award

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Heart Songs for Veterans of the Year SGT Eric Hunter, Artist Sam French.Todd Farmer

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L to R: Heart Songs for Veterans Andy Roadarmel, Todd Farmer (Drummer) Sam French & Brian Jones (Justine Blazer Band)

The Omni Nashville provided accomodations for Mark, Naya and Service Protection Dogs for World Peace.

To Cap the evening off a surprise donation was made to Service Protection Dogs for World Peace on behalf of Jill Pavel, Founder of Heart Songs for Veterans in the amount of $2000.00. Pavel presented the check to D. Hoppe.

 Author: Jill Pavel

What Makes a Malsatian a Good Choice from GatorlandK9?

on Monday, 26 August 2013. Posted in Malsatians, German Shepherds, Protection Dogs

Bradpuppy

Here are some GREAT reasons a Malsatian is a Good Choice of a puppy breed from GatorlandK9.

  • Low Maintenance - less shedding
  • Super healthy, this is a cross breed.  Meaning there is no common ancestry, minimizing the chances of geneticallay inherited problems or health issues malanois/german shepherd cross
  • Medium sized dogs are easier for service work, they can get into tight spaces
  • Highly trainable for ALL types of Service work


The Malsatian is a cross (malanois/german shepherd cross) done frequently by trainers & police agencies in Europe & produces a superior working dog that is easier to handle & trains very quickly.
Our Malsatians come from outstanding genetic backgrounds.

Ted Hoppe has bred & trained Malinois for over 20 years & traveled to Europe to Import his original breeding stock, creating the Gatorlandk9 bloodline, a working bred Malinois. These are crossed into the finest Imported German Shepherd bloodlines in the World.

Temperament tested, super socialized & evaluated so that they will go to suitable homes.


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Author: Jill Pavel

A Veteran Advocates for Himself and His Service Dog!

on Monday, 23 September 2013. Posted in Veterans with PTSD

 
 
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NAYA - Service Protection Dog
Mark Berry is a 59 year old Veteran, born in Hyannis, Massachusetts. In 1973 Mark enlisted in the United States Navy and spent the next 4 years serving during the Vietnam War Era. He was with the 6th Fleet after boot camp and spent time on a carrier in the Mediterranean.  Mark was an airman on the flight deck. One of his job tasks was during the recovery of TWA flight 841 that was attacked by terrorists in 1974 over Athens, Greece in Route to JFK, NYC.  This was the first known instance of a young Arab boarding an American plane in a suicide mission (resource, Wikpedia). Mark was part of the recovery team that brought home 88 bodies including 79 passengers and 9 crew members. To this day, Mark has a difficult time discussing that event in his life.  
Mark is 100% disabled. He has been living with mental disorders and PTSD since his service to our country. He was diagnosed with PTSD two years ago during a VA hospital stay. 
When I asked Mark how he came to GatorlandK9 he said," I have gone through the system and met other Veterans  that had service dogs.  I saw how they were working for them and I wanted one."  All Veterans are looking for relief and solutions to help them cope with their PTSD and other Brain related disorders. According to Mark he was told that there is at least a 4 year waiting list. Mark found GatorlandK9  on the internet and was impressed by Owner Ted Hoppe's Military Service in the Air Force. He was drawn to the dogs we presented and reached out to Ted. 
Mark  has been living with his service dog Naya for two years.  Mark has a deep respect for Naya. He respects her as an employee would respect their boss. Talking with Mark was refreshing, he has a very professional relationship with his dog.  He views her as she should be, a "working dog".  I asked Mark how he navigates the relationship when they are not at work.  He said, "she is trained to know that once her vest goes on, she is on duty. When the vest comes off, she is off duty but always on, stand by".  Only when the vest comes off does he indulge Naya in play with her Kong Toy.  Naya was born in March 2011.  Scan0050
 Mark Berry & Naya
Six months ago, Mark started to fight in a new war.  A war for his rights to bring his service dog to the White River Junction VA Hospital, VT and  for Naya's right to perform her job functions at all times.  Without a legal explanation, Mark was told by a social worker  of the facility that he could no longer bring Naya into the facility.    Mark took it upon himself to fight for his rights and the rights of other Veterans.  Naya had never exhibited any behavioral issues or negative conduct both physically and from an audio perspective.  She was professional at all times.  Becoming accustomed to the benefits of having Naya by his side at all times created anxiety, fear and anger inside of Mark.    Mark could not understand, Naya had been to the hospital with him many times, she has always been well received by the housekeeping, nurse, administration, doctors & therapists. Mark said, "When the Social Worker told me that this is a new policy it was presented in a way that I perceived it as a threat, t was time for me to stand up and fight for my rights."
Mark immediately turned to GatorlandK9 and we immediately jumped into action by reaching out to a Corp. of Veterans including Sean Hill.  There were endless phone calls on Mark's behalf to the VA Hospital, Local Politicians including Congressman Peter Welch who went in on foot to meet with the Administration of the VA Hospital on Mark and Naya's behalf.  Unfortunately none of their efforts were met with a positive response.   
When Mark exhausted all of his internal resources at the hospital  he reached out to Chief of Police, John Richardson.  Police Chief Richardson, took it upon himself to contact the hospital directly and was responsible for facilitating the reinstatement of Naya's ability to enter the hospital.  Naya already had the appropriate paperwork and attire to represent her official role as Mark's working dog.  It is sad that it took a First Responder to get the job done.  Since when did our Veterans stop having a legitimate voice?  To be fair, Mark has stated clearly that he thinks the White River Junction VA Medical Center is one of the best facilities he has dealt with in his years post service.  In his opinion this was not a policy issue but a human issue.  Naya and Mark are back in business and have championed a positive outcome in this situation.
The point of sharing this with you is that Mark wanted other Veterans to know that we cannot always rely on others to advocate for our needs or rights.  Sometimes we have to take a stand and do it for ourselves.  In this case Police Chief Richardson helped Mark get this situation turned around, but Mark had to go out and advocate to him for his help.  It was empowering for Mark and as the author of this blog,  I hope this helps other Veterans not find defeat in the word NO.  NO can create empowerment.
Jill asked Mark to share some of his wisdom with other Veterans pertaining to PTSD and Service Dogs, specifically with his life experience with Naya.   Here is what he said:
1. "Talking to Therapists and Psychiatrists on a regular basis is a part of my treatment.  I do not wait until I am close to a breakdown to get help.   Also, when I visit the VA hospital they take notes and put them into the computer.  During my fight to get Naya and my rights reinstated they always made notes in the computer.  Ultimately that helped me when presenting my case to the Police Chief to help me.  Police Chief Richardson acted as my liaison and cited the laws to the same people who were telling me no."
Other first responders will be more sensitive to the issues of a Veteran.  They have respect for our service. 
2.  Be wary of where you purchase a service dog.  Naya is an import dog hand selected for me based on various emotional and physical criteria.  GatorlandK9 & serviceprotectiondogs.org custom selects all of the dogs for all of their clients. Domestic Shepherds tend to have a higher incidence of thrown hip dysplasia and mental instability. The Breeds that Gatorland & serviceprotectiondogs.org  provide are able to sort out different environments naturally.  
Naya stays neutral in busy environment, where other service dogs  jump up off place command or bark.  Naya always remains in control.  
3.  Naya helps Mark wake up from  nightmares and night terrors.  She calms him down.
4.  Mark shares, "When I am in general public places ie; Walmart or food stores,  Naya has the ability to pick up on what is going on around me before I do.  She has an incredible sense of her surroundings at all times.  She alerts me by standing in front of me or she puts her left paw on my leg which is an indicator for me to find a quiet place.  If anyone comes close to me, she alerts me by standing so close to me she is almost on top of my leg."
Mark stated boldly, "Meet my PTSD!!  I have anxiety, paranoia, agitation to the extent that I can be viewed as verbally offensive, withdraw socially.  All of these symptoms have been helped and alleviated to a great extent because of Naya and our working relationship. I am consistently in awe of how she has the ability to read me, my symptoms before I recognize them in myself.  I have had to learn how to read her and her responses as well. I am mutually protective of her.  I respect the training guidelines of not allowing the public to touch or interfere in her work.  Once in awhile she is stumped by a situation.  She cocks her head and looks to me and I guide her as to how to handle the new situation. We are a team.  
Mark recently shared this article with me http://www.vnews.com/news/healthcare/8365794-95/va-gets-45-million-for-ptsd.   There is help coming for PTSD research, more so than in the past.  Article's such as this that show the grants and funding working for our Veterans is promising.  We have a long way to go. 
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 Mark Berry & Naya 
Mark has had an inspiring journey for himself with his service dog Naya and on behalf of other Veterans. We look forward to sharing more with you as Mark continues to navigate through his life with Naya by his side.  
For More Information on our Veterans with PTSD Programming visit Contact Jill Pavel (732) 423-2070
For More Information on our Custom Selected Import Dogs and Training Programs please visit www.gatorlandk9international.com  Contact Ted Hoppe (386) 337-0730
Author: Jill Pavel

Why Import Your Next German Shepherd

on Tuesday, 15 January 2013. Posted in German Shepherds

In the US, a person with 2 registered dogs can breed them regardless of their individual qualities and receive AKC papers. These dogs may have floppy ears, hip dysplasia, and poor temperament, be nervous, gun shy, fear biters and the owner of the litter will still receive full registration privileges on all of the puppies. In short quality control is non existent in the states.

This does not mean that there are no good breeders of German Shepherds, there are many breeders who have knowledge of the genetics of the breed and x-ray their breeding stock. The German Shepherd breeders in the US who breed quality dogs, practice the European standards but these breeders are in the vast minority, so yes it’s possible to buy a quality German Shepherd in this country but hard to find.

The breeding of German Shepherds as done in Europe is an entirely different affair and uses the following quality control standards.

1. All dogs must have a hip certification ( 'A' stamp )  by a qualified veterinarian.

2. All dogs must have a conformation rating. It is important that they look like German Shepherds and conform to the standards.

3. Each dog certified for breeding must also have a working title, like Schutzhund , IPO , SVV or ZVV. This is very important because it assures to a certain degree that drives and temperament remain true as required of a working dog which the German Shepherd was originally bred to be. It requires a lot of effort on the part of the owner to achieve a working title as required in Europe. A puppy must be schooled from a young age in tracking, obedience and sport oriented protection work.

4. All dogs must also go through a breed survey called a Koer in Germany or Bonitacia in Slovakia, in which many individual qualities are evaluated, and where they are rated and approved or disapproved for breeding. This is extremely important as the dog is truly put under the scrutiny of experts.

These 4 requirements are necessary for 2 dogs to be bred and receive Pink papers.

Quality control standards are why someone should choose an Imported German Shepherd or one that is bred from imported bloodlines. Our German Shepherds excel as Family Protection Dogs, PTSD Veterans Service Dogs, Service Therapy Protection Dogs & just excellent Family Companion Dogs. 

The German Shepherd breed is considered the most versatile and useful of all breeds. No other breed works in so many varied services to the degree of the German Shepherd. Quality control standards assure the buyer that they will receive a well bred dog, who is intelligent, loyal and mentally/physically sound.

Picking A Level of Protection Dog Training

on Friday, 25 January 2013. Posted in German Shepherds, Protection Dogs, Service Dogs, Therapy Dogs

After researching protection dogs on the Internet and feeling totally confused, people often ask what level of protection training my dogs have? It’s like they are trying to compare the deluxe model with leather interior, power windows and all of the bells and whistles vs. the basic model. Buying a dog that you can trust with your family is something entirely different than buying a car.

You should ask yourself ‘What is my handling ability/experience?’ ‘What do I need in a dog?’ ‘What is the right dog for my situation?

Communicate your needs and describe what you expect from the dog. A good trainer will take the time to listen to your needs and try to get a feel if he has the right dog for your situation.

Most people and families need an excellent quality animal with a good obedience foundation and basic protection that is useful and practical. A trained dog is not a vicious dog. It is confident and approachable. You don’t want a dog that is aggressive to the point of being a liability. You need a very forgiving dog, your children can pet it and it does not feel threatened. In the Military and Police K-9 schools, the handlers are matched with the right dog for that individual. The same will hold true for matching a protection/companion dog with the individual needs of that person or family.

The proper temperament for a family protection dog is something a dog is born with. Dogs, like people have their own personalities, i.e. a very alpha/aggressive dog is not a good choice for a family companion dog. It is possible to find a very well trained dog that looks good and acts good in its training environment but is entirely different when you bring it home.

You need a good instructor to show you how to maintain a protection dog’s training. You need to acquire training/handling skills. This is all part of our service. So when selecting a dog for family protection, be less concerned about levels or bells and whistles, and more on individual personality and traits of the dog.

Why German Shepherds make the best Family Protection Dog

on Monday, 10 May 2010. Posted in German Shepherd Puppies

People ask us our recommendation in selecting the right breed for Family Protection/ Companion Dog. First, we would like to say that many times individual temperament / personality is as important as the breed and poor temperament can be found in any breed. Here are some of our reasons for choosing the German Shepherd for most situations as the best Family Protection Dog .

  1. Because the criminal recognizes the German Shepherd as a Police Dog , this adds greatly to the deterrent effect a German Shepherd has in comparison to a Labrador (a breed developed for hunting)
  2. Most versatile of all breeds – intelligent, trainable- catches on quickly and retains commands. German Shepherds have many uses. Police, Military , Seeing Eye, Detection Dogs, herding dogs, sport dogs, Service Dogs and area guard dogs.
  3. Very tolerant of small children. Very in-tune with the owner also alert, naturally defensive of territory and pack, good sense of duty.
  4. Ability to adapt- the US Military’s preferred dog is the German Shepherd for various reasons but importantly it’s ability to adapt to new handlers.
  5. These traits are or should be characteristic of the well bred German Shepherd Dog. We place and have trained many such dogs for families and have had the most success with this breed over all others and we owned and have trained too many breeds to mention over the last 25 years.

Our Newest Import Family Protection Dogs!

on Sunday, 11 July 2010. Posted in German Shepherd Puppies

We are proud to present our new custom selected Imports on the Adult Dog page of the website.

Ted has outdone himself and selected the finest family protection dog prospects we have ever had at one time. Cevil, Toby Togy are ready to go to their perfect homes and Rex is a young adult Import who will be receiving our specialized training here at GatorlandK9.

Check back often for more new pictures added to the puppy page and for more new videos added to the site.

Sign up for our free newsletter to get the first Pick of the Litter announcements of new dogs, puppies and videos. (see upper right)

Puppies will be available from Kanses (left). He is a proven producer of WOW DOGS!! He produces good hips, bear-like heads, superior temperament, size, color and conformation.


Reserve your Awesome Puppy Now!
Call Ted at 386-337-0730

GATORLANDK9 MALSATIANS ARE HERE!!

on Wednesday, 21 August 2013. Posted in Puppies

The German Shepherd Malinois cross is seen frequently serving our Armed Forces around the World. 

They are also chosen to serve as Police K-9 Dogs.

The Malsatian or German Shepherd/Malinois are great dogs and very trainable. 

 The puppies show below were bred by RJ Hoppe & Tebow. Pictured on our adult dog page is the Sire. These pups will grow to be shorter coated, very intelligent & great family protection dogs. They also integrate well in their socialization with children.

For information on these pups contact Ted Hoppe

(386) 337-0730

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Female

 

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Male

 

Author: Jill Pavel

Veteran Josh Schutt's Story Living with PTSD

on Tuesday, 27 August 2013. Posted in Veterans with PTSD, German Shepherds, Service Dogs

In June 2013 We officially launched our Veterans with PTSD Programming 

Our Mission:  To provide funding to Veterans with PTSD or other neurological disorders and individuals who have a need for help from a service protection dog,  where they might otherwise not be able to acquire a service dog.

We are currently working with Veteran Josh Schutt, Philadelphia, PA who served for six years in the US Army including 2 tours in Iraq and Afghanistan. Josh lives with PTSD and TBI.  His daily life struggle is documented on his facebook  page Help Support A Veteran.  Josh came to GatorlandK9 four months ago.  We are actively working toward his goal of funding a service dog.  

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Josh has opened up his world to all of you.   This is his story.  

Josh Schutt's  Story

I served in the US Army from 1998 until October, 2004. I was medically discharged due to injuries I suffered in Iraq.

I was injured in Iraq on Aug 1, 2003, when my weapon, a .50 cal machine gun, misfired and exploded on me and I was left only holding what they call the butterfly handles. My body immediately went into shock, so I didn’t feel any pain but I did recognize the severity of my injuries. My bleeding was very significant so I wasn’t sure that I was going to make. It took three hours to get to the closest medical unit. When I got to the MASH unit, I explained to the doctor what happened and he was so shocked he lost all the color in his face. He said he couldn’t believe that I was alive, let alone awake. I took shrapnel to my leg and my stomach. He immediately had to operate on me to remove the metal throughout my body. I spent a week in Iraq until I became stable enough to be transported to Germany. Once I was there, many tests were run and they were able to partially close up some of my wounds. I spent another week there before I was sent to Walter Reid where they proceeded to run more tests, close up the rest of my wounds and made sure I was healing. Once they ruled out internal bleeding, I was released.

I was medically discharge from the military for my physically injuries. However, my emotional and psychological injuries were a lot harder to recover from.  For the next few years, I spent a lot of time looking at the bottom of a beer mug and trying to avoid everyone and anything.  I could not sleep unless I drank enough to pass out and when I did fall asleep, I would wake up screaming and sweaty from the nightmares.  I experienced a lot while in Iraq and I was having trouble learning to live a normal life again. I didn’t know what was going on or how to deal with it. I finally went to the VA where I was diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and a Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI). PTSD is a type of anxiety disorder usually caused by a life threatening event(s). It is diagnosed when someone experiences recurring flashbacks and high levels of anxiety that continue a month after the traumatic event.

My doctors suggested a multitude of medications but they weren’t enough.  I finally came across something called a PTSD service dog and after researching, I realized they had helped many Veterans like me deal with PTSD. I discovered that having a PTSD service dog would allow me to live a more normal life. For example, I am constantly looking around to make sure there aren’t any snipers or IUDs hidden in my surrounding but the sense of security the service dog will give me will allow me to relax.  It will also wake me up when I have night terrors, which are frequent. It will help me to go out and be social in big crowds, which I typically avoid. If it senses me getting stressed, a PTSD dog is trained to calm me back down avoiding a full blown panic attack.

The challenge with obtaining a specially trained service dog is that they cost more than I can afford due to the fact that the training is so extensive that is takes years to complete. There are many agencies out there that offer free dogs to Veterans but they have an extremely long waiting list and I have dealt with this for way too long. I am now asking for your assistance and anyone else’s who would be willing to donate funds to help me cover the cost of getting a PTSD service dog. The average cost of training and obtaining a PTSD service dog, including training is very expensive.  I am ready to live a normal life again but I need your help. Please help me raise this money by donating anything you can and by passing this along to everyone you know. It would be greatly appreciated. 

There are several ways you can support our efforts for Josh:

1.  Make a direct donation 

 If you would like to make a donation you can mail a check! 

Make Checks Payable to:

 Service Protection Dogs For World Peace

PO Box 296 Barberville, FL 32105 

Mark Memo:  Josh Schutt 

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 Author: Jill Pavel

We LOVE our Belgian!

on Wednesday, 04 September 2013. Posted in Belgian Malinois

At GatorlandK9 International we often hear from our clients who purchase our puppies/dogs for Service Protection Dogs and Family Companions. 

Hey Ted,


I just wanted to give you an update on our wonderful Belgian. I attached a few photos we have taken recently. He is a very courageous, adventurous, ball of energy who loves his long relaxing naps in weird positions. We traveled home to Texas over the Fourth of July weekend. Let me tell you how wonderful he did. He flew in the cabin with us both ways and laid on the floor completely relaxed and was a perfect dog. I was also surprised that on the Fourth during fireworks he laid at Madison's feet the whole time and then decided he would sleep through almost all of it. He has never showed us an ounce of worry or act of being scared. We take him to an obstacle course multiple times throughout the week and he has mastered all of it. His love for water is growing everyday now to where he walks in just for fun. He has also successfully learned sit, lay down, shake, and is working on stay. We wanted to let you know we couldn't be happier with the wonderful animal you have provided us with. We get so many compliments on how beautiful and well behaved he is. Words can't express our gratefulness. Thanks again for everything!

Very Truly Yours,


Madison and Andrew

puppy glaeder

 Author: Jill Pavel

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