References Page 1

Dear John and Susan,

It’s been a while and hopefully spring is starting to make its way up to
your neighborhood. You know you have cabin fever when you get excited
about it being 40 degrees outside! I have been meaning to pass along an
update but have been really busy since we brought our “son” home.

Max is doing very well. He’s not a big lug; he’s a ginormous lug. I
have concluded that you folks are not breeding purebred shepherds up
there (joke). I think they are the rare and elusive German
Jack-a-Shepherd. His paws are massive and his ears must be at least 1.5
times the height of his head (if he didn’t have ears). Last we checked
he was 33.x pounds and that was after a two week mess up at the trainers
and 2? 3? weeks ago – he’s 15 weeks now . The vet thinks he’s easily
going to be 100+ probably 125.

Max and Gretchen attended Tom Rose School of Dog Training for a couple
of weeks here. I don’t know if you all have heard of it or not; but
it’s the only place I could find that did what I would call “serious”
training vs. what you might find at Petsmart. They also do a lot of
competitive training for Obedience, Schutzhund, and something called PSA
which I hadn’t heard of before. They did an excellent job with the
down, sit, and recall. Gretchen was the best of the two as Max is very
easily distracted especially if sister is in the same room. Gretchen is
definitely showing herself as the smarter of the two. You can put her
in the down and she’ll stay but she’ll also crawl across the floor if
she wants to go someplace while IN the down. We also discovered a very
cheap treat for the two of them. They LOVE ice cubes.

Max is starting to loose his puppy fur and get his ‘saddle’. It’s
funny, my friends make fun of me for spending so much money on a dog
when there are lots of good dogs at the city pound. In fact, a couple
and their kids just went out and bought a mutt and keep telling me how
much they paid for it. Funny thing is that the wife doesn’t joke with
me though. I think that’s perhaps because she’s the only one whose seen
Max. Personally, and I’m sure you’ll love to hear this, I feel like I
stole this dog and that somehow I owe you some more. I have had pure
breads before but none have received these many compliments. And that’s
not on how good he looks, but it’s on his temperament and disposition
also. How many people walk up and say, “I’ve never seen a dog with such
a good disposition before”, as one of the first things out of their
mouths??? It tells you they’ve been watching the dog for sometime,
which is kinda freaky now that I think of it.

Something else I’ve noticed. We take them to training weekly and there
are other purebred GSD’s there however, NONE are like your dogs.
N-O-N-E. Your dogs are bigger, they coloring is better, the have that
shepherd “trot” or “jog” when they walk, they are more
keen/tuned-in/alert to what’s going on around them, and they just look
healthier. Gretchen was the runt of the litter? She towered over
another GSD her same age the first week. The best part is that our vet,
whom we’ve never been to prior to owning Max and Gretchen, the
receptionist is a hobby breeder of Shepherds, and she and the vet said
when they first met them that they haven’t seen German Shepherd puppies
that looked this well bred and with this good of temperament in a long
time. Even the trainer at Tom Rose is excited about these two and
keeps asking about you guys. She is always asking people probing
questions about where did they get their dog, what was the breeder like
etc. She gets very excited when I tell her how you all do things and
the kinds of dogs you have especially when she gets to work with the
fruits of your labor on a weekly basis! So when anyone asks I just tell
them who all are and when they ask where you are I point it out on my
right hand.

Anyway, I just wanted to give you an update. Also, just to let you
know, if anyone would like a reference please feel free to pass them my
email address. In addition, I would also be more than happy to meet
them with Max so they can see him for themselves and ask questions.

Hope all is well!

Jason, Cindy, Ava and Max ~ St. Louis 2011


Hi John and Sue,

I’ve been wanting to send you some pictures of Bella and let you know how she’s doing.  She weighs about 45 lbs. now.  Last night we started a beginning obedience class.  She did very well in puppy class.  She is the best.  Of course there are those crazy moments she has each day when she runs around the house like she is on speed.  We live down the the street from a very large forest preserve so we’ve been doing about 3 – 4 miles of walking each day.  Almost every day someone stops me to tell me how beautiful she is.
Eric &Sharon Butt ( Abby & Rooney )

Shoka vom Kolenda 2010/2011

Hi … How are you? Hope everything is fine. I just wanted to send an update on Shoka. (and share a few pics).

He’s an amazing dog and everything we could have hoped for. He’s about 80 lbs and stands 27″ at the shoulder. (I wanted a big dog 😀 ) He’s just now losing the last of his baby teeth (he’s just 5.5 months old 🙂 ) and his head is starting to broaden. He’s starting to get Irsus’s mane even though right now I think he looks more like Biggi.

He’s easy to train and loves everyone. His protective instinct is just now starting to kick in (he barks when strangers are at the door)and I’m doing the basic obedience with him but am looking for a good schuzhund club for the advanced stuff.

I’m attaching some pics … hope you enjoy them. The first pic is Shoka with my shoe. He knows he’s not supposed to have them but he finds them irresistible. It’s his one vice 😉

Please say Hi to John and Eric … 🙂

Teresa, Erin and Shoka

Maggie May vom Kolenda

~ Ruth Webster, Bristol IN ~

~ Michael & Sergeant ~ Michigan


Seams like everytime we go to the beach we’re asked where we got her.  If you could send some more Cards!

~The Hayes Family Portage, IN~

Jimmy vom Kolenda


~Jeff Taylor, Arthur IL~

Chloe vom Kolenda


Dear John & Susan,

This is Chloe now at 16 months! She gets so many compliments. She is very intelligent and loves everyone. We can take her anywhere! Your Dogs are the Best!!!

~ Gail & Dan Craver Liverpool New York~



Dear John and Susan,

I have attached (or at least I think I did) a current picture of Zoe.  We purchased Zoe from you last summer and she is growing up.  Alicia thinks that raising Zoe is harder than raising a kid because she is so full of energy.  I wanted to let you know how she is progressing and how much we enjoy her.  Although she is not a puppy anymore, she still acts like one.  Please let me know if you got the picture.

Steve and Alicia Hodson

Kodiak vom Kolenda


Doug & Mindy Gustasson Brookings – OR~

Hello from California!

I am 5 months old this week.  Look how I have grown!  Aren’t I handsome?!!
I weigh 48 lbs and my tail still drags on the ground.  I think I am going to be a big dog one day!

(We think he is the most beautiful puppy ever!!)

Hogan is so mellow and sweet.  We get nothing but compliments on what a wonderful dog he is.  We are so happy to have him and we are so glad you have a web site!
Thank you for our Hogan!
The Maestri’s

Dear Susan and John, Just wanted to thank you for sending us Eva (and Kaiser)! The dogs are getting along really well. Eva is even climbing into Kaiser’s crate every once in a while to snuggle up next to him. She is a hungry little puppy and growing like a weed! I swear she grows in her sleep each and every night in her crate! She seems very happy and very much at home in Florida. We have such nice weather this time of the year and it is a good time for the dog to adjust to our higher humidity. I am sure that she will watch and swim with her brother this summer too! She watches what he does and imitates him. They antagonize each other into games of tug of war and tag! Kaiser seems extremely happy with his sister and has calmed down as a result – it is too funny to watch him watch her. Oh the antics! Just an update and I will try to take some photos so that you can see them both. Hope you are staying warm and that all of the dogs are well. Take care and Happy New Year!

Sincerely, Robin Perkins Office Manager Integrated Turf Care

Gretchen vom Kolenda 2011


Gretchen as been a wonderful companion for me and is smart as a whip. She is full of boundless energy and enjoys fetching anything or just sometimes a stick she finds. I have left Gretchen at the kennel for 6 days and she enjoyed socializing with other dogs (two Great Danes and a Lab were her buddies) I research and visited several kennels before my selection based upon appearance and play time with other dogs.

I also take her once a week to K-9 Kennels for a one day romp and play with other dogs which Gretchen does well and has her favorites. I can drop off at 8:30 am and pick up at 5:00 pm for $15 a weekly special. I think this is great for her socialization skills.

Completed Puppy Class and will enroll her in Intermediate Training Class after Gretchen is completed with her cycle.

I am extremely satisfied with my decision to purchase Gretchen from Kolenda Kennels and would not hesitate to recommend Kolenda kennels as a outstanding breeding facility. Gretchen has brought much joy to my life……Thank You

~Jim Albright Florida~

Pascha Veracruz vom Kolenda 2011

Hi Susan & John,
These are pictures of Pascha Veracruz vom Kolenda at just 7 months old. He just finished 8 weeks of obedience training and he was the top dog in his class. I get on a daily basis complements on what a good looking German Shepherd he is. Thank you so much for this very smart and regal looking boy.

~John Fallon New Jersey~

Fester vom Kolenda 2011

Hi John and Sue,

A quick note to thank you for such a great puppy. We are really enjoying Fester. He is so much fun and so sweet with a little bit of naughty mixed in to keep us on our toes. : ) He really is nice little dog. We have been on several walks, and he is doing great on the leash. He has only had a couple accidents in the house – my fault for not getting him out in time. He gets up once in the night for a potty call. Beyond that, he sleeps like a dream – he has not whined one time since the first night he was here. He and Corky are getting along so well. They are so much fun to watch together. Corky is such a good dog, I am hoping that Fester just naturally picks up on some of his good qualites. I think Corky and Fester are going to be a great team. Fester seems very happy in his new home. It’s a good fit for all of us. Can’t ask for more than that. Right now, we’re sitting on the deck, and he is watching the chickens in the yard. He’s totally infatuated just watching them. We haven’t been in the back yard too much yet, but the couple times that he’s seen the chickens, he just sits and observes. We’re going to get out today and have some chicken time. If he gets used to them now, hopefully he won’t chase them when he’s older. I’ve seen shepherds around chickens, so I know they “can” live in harmony.

Fester is a major people magnet. We took him to our small town festival on Saturday, and people just couldn’t get enough of him. Corky was a little put out, because he’s usually the one getting all the attention. : ) Everybody loves a puppy, and an adorable shepherd puppy is hard to match. We were so impressed how well Fester did with the people, the crowd, the noises – it didn’t phase him one bit. I carried him through the crowd so he wouldn’t get stepped on, but when we were out in the open a little, he walked along as if he had been there 100 times. Perfectly confident, perfectly content, and just taking it all in. Whether it is good breeding, all the special TLC that you gave him, or just plain good luck – I can tell already that Fester is going to be an amazing dog.

We stopped at Petco on our way home from your house, and had a hard time getting down an isle without getting mobbed at every corner. I don’t know how many times people have told us how beautiful he is. Even people who aren’t GSD people can tell there is something extra special about him. We will have to start allowing a little extra time when we go out to make time for all the attention. When someone comes up to you and asks, “Can I pet your dog?” It’s hard to say, “Well, you’re about the 300th person to ask today….” : )

Even the vet was impressed with him. We go to a small town country doc – we’ve taken our pets there forever. I don’t know what I’ll do if he ever retires. As he was looking over the paperwork that you had supplied, he said, “You probably don’t have much to worry about as far as Fester’s genetic health.” He could tell that you went the extra mile in everything else that did, so he had no reason to be concerned that that wouldn’t carry through in quality of your dogs. He could tell you were a “good breeder” just by looking at Fester and a couple pieces of paper. : ) Not that I had any doubts, but coming from somebody who’s seen a little bit of everything, he was reassuring that we made a good choice.

So, we thank you. Our journey is just beginning, but we’re off to a great start. While I enjoy the puppy stage, I am really looking forward to the Fester that is to come. I will keep in contact and send pictures along the way. I posted one on your facebook page in case you haven’t seen it. Thanks again! Deanne

Dear Kolenda Kennels,

My name is Craig Barker. We bought a puppy from you born march 20th (Aprx) out of Rooney and Danas Liter. We are very happy with him so far. He is growing nicely. He is about 75# and has turned into a beautiful dog. I have attached pictures of him for you to look at. Thanks for the GREAT dog.


Craig Barker

Thor vom Kolenda

Hi Susan
I just wanted to let you know how happy we are with our new puppy “Thor”. We have four children ages 2,8,10,& 18.
Thor is a great looking German Shepard, which you can clearly see in his attached photos. We just took these pictures today at his current age of 5 months. He is gentle and patient with Jessica our 2 year old daughter, even when she climbs on top of him when he is resting and eating. Thor is the most intelligent puppy I have ever owned. He starts obedience classes next week and we plan to train him in agility and protection as well. Thanks for your great breeding work. I hope you enjoy the pics.


Riley vom Kolenda

Hello John & Susan,

> My name is Kristina Thompson and my aunt, Cindy Akins, and I bought a puppy from your kennels that were born 11/25/2010 from the male Irsus. We had the last female of the group shipped to Texas in January once she was eight weeks old. I just felt like I should write and say that she is absolutely the most wonderful dog our family has ever had. She is spectacular, extremely intelligent, gentle and well tempered. We adore her. I have attached some pictures in case you might want to add them to your photo section of your website. And if not I just wanted to say that our family will always recommend and speak very highly of your kennels.

Thank you for everything. Kristina Thompson

Luger vom Kolenda


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