Shandel: When this little girl was born in Etoile's first litter to Triomph, she appeared a soft silvery grey colour, quite distinct from the rest of the litter. Since learning about leonbergers, I've always said I'd love a true sand coloured one, never thinking we would produce one ourselves, as it is a colour that doesn't appear very often, even when bred from parents that are such. The only other sand coloured leo in New Zealand before Shandel, was the very first import into our country called Cadillac, who was brought in from Sweden way back in the ninetees.
I knew that from this litter, she was a definite to keep, whether she would ever be suitable to be bred from or not. Shandel is elegant and graceful like her mother, well-structured and of good proportions too. Her keen, intelligent dark eyes and pretty black mask sure make a stunning contrast to her lovely creamy, off-white coloured coat.
Shandel has passed her health tests and she has recently (2007) produced a wonderful litter with Uzi, with at least 5 much coveted sands. At this stage the pups are still young, so a couple more could turn lion-yellow (like grandma Etoile) when they mature. I can spot the definite sands at birth, but the lion-yellow development is always a real puzzle and can't be predicted. They can be born extremely dark with lots of black, yet turn to lion-yellow as they grow up. We are keeping a girl from this lovely all European combination to hopefully carry on our future breeding programme.
20th January 2008