Name: Rocky T.      Deceased
Age: 11 year(s)
male, neutered
View Photos

Adoption Process

Our adoption process is designed to help you and the right dog find each other. Our goal is to place each dog into a permanent, safe, and loving home.

To adopt a German Shepherd Dog from us, you must:

1. Live in Northern California.
2. Complete an Adoption Questionnaire, either online, or by mail. If you do not own your home, you must also have your landlord complete the Landlord Letter.
3. Be interviewed by an adoption counselor.  
4. Allow a home visit by an adoption counselor.
5. Be approved for adoption.
6. Choose, and be chosen by, the right dog.
7. With our approval, sign our Adoption Agreement, and pay the associated fee.

After we receive your online Adoption Questionnaire, we will call you to begin the adoption process. We encourage potential adopters to come to one or more Adoption Days, because that is the best way to meet several German Shepherds and to find your new companion. If you attend an Adoption Day and choose a dog, you may be able to adopt the same day, if all adoption requirements are met.

If you cannot come to any Adoption Day, we can still assist you, this may take longer because the people who will help you are volunteers who usually have jobs, and scheduling meetings with dogs can be complex because our dogs live in many homes and kennels.


Rocky T.'s Story:

The Thulani Program
Helping the most vulnerable...

Want a ruggedly handsome GSD in classic black and tan? With a bit of grey on the muzzle to give him a distinguished look? A GSD that will impress people when out on walks? Then Rocky T is your GSD.

Rocky T, or Der Rockster as his fosterer calls him, is a member the GSRNC Thulani Program because he was estimated by a vet to be eleven years old at the shelter where he was rescued, but he looks and acts more like 7 or 8. He’s alert, involved, and athletic, although he may have a bit of arthritis in the rear. Rocky is ready, willing, and enthusiastic about going places, whether walking or riding, which he does very well.

He greets people excitedly, but appropriately, going to them for pets and scritches. He is one happy dog. He wants to be near his people, but he’s not clingy or needy. Rocky takes treats gently and gives soft kisses occasionally.

Der Rockster would do best living with a loving family that can walk or exercise him daily and that has had experience with large breed dogs. Rocky would likely benefit from a refresher course in basic commands as well. He doesn’t respond to Here or Come, but he quickly learned to respond to Wo ist mein hund? (Where is my dog, pronounced Vo ist mine hunt?) or Wo ist der Rockster? Der Rockster also learned Move IT! after only a couple of times (he does like to lay down in the way, and being a big boy, takes up quite a lot of room). He has responded to Sit a couple of times.

Der Rockster is a quiet dog that doesn’t bark much (well, except for those pesky squirrels), although he’s become confortable enough for the guard dog to start to come through. Rocky T. sometimes talks a lot when a new dog approaches him, but he is not aggressive, and his chatter is typically accompanied by tail wags and excitement. He is large however, so he can seem intimidating, but he really is not all that interested in other dogs. Rocky just does not seem to have a small animal prey drive, although he will bark at squirrels. For this reason we believe he may also be able to live at the same home as a cat. It would likely not be love and kisses all the time because the cat’s own dog instincts may kick in, but with training it is expected Rocky may be able to be workable with the right cat.

Rocky T. is part of the Thulani Program, and as such we are looking for a forever home that will care for him for the rest of his life, in warmth and love. He will come with a supply of food, a cushy pad if wanted, and other goodies such as toys, and free medical care for life. If you want to learn more about Rocky T., or are possibly interested in providing him a home, please contact Bob at

Rocky T. is a level 3 dog that is strong and athletic.

All of the available Thulani Dogs are also posted on the Thulani Dogs Website. There you will find a separate matrix of only Thulani Dogs.



Important Note About Dog Descriptions

Please remember that the descriptions of dogs (of Dogs Available) have been written by GSRNC volunteers and are usually based only upon our observation of the dog since the time it was rescued. While we try to provide dog descriptions that are fair and accurate, the nature of our work involves contact with dogs whose background and history are unknown to us. GSRNC cannot warrant or guarantee any dog's future behavior. For example, if we say that a rescue dog gets along with children, cats, or other dogs, this statement is usually based upon the fact that one of our volunteers has observed the dog interacting with his or her own children or pets. While this information may be helpful, we cannot be certain of how a dog will do with the children or pets in your home. If you are considering adopting, we encourage you to come to one of our Adoption Days and meet our rescue dogs. Ultimately, only you can decide whether one of our dogs is right for you.

Explanation of the Dog Levels

1 – "Fireplace dog"
Couch potato, super easy, low energy and no issues. This level of dog would do well in any home regardless of owner experience. (We rarely come across this level of dog.)

2 – “Easy Large Breed Companion Dog”
Low to moderate energy, needs some exercise but it is not a daily requirement. This dog will do well in most homes. The dog gets along with most other dogs, gets along with most other people and have been successfully been around children. The dog has no real behavioral issues that need to be managed or dealt with on a daily basis. This dog is an easy family dog.  

3 –“Standard Large Breed Dog”
Moderate energy, needs daily exercise of some sort to thrive and stay happy. This dog will do well in many types of homes, but some situations will not work for this dog. This dog may not get along with some types of dogs. This dog may be reactive to some other dogs while on leash. It may have too much energy to be around small children while unattended, and may have some behavioral issues that will require formal training or daily monitoring for the dog to successfully live happily in a family. These issues are normally minor such as fence climbing, prey drive, minor separation anxiety, nervousness in crowds, or other minor behavioral traits. A Potential Adopter for a level 3 dog must have prior, recent large breed dog experience and be able to demonstrate the ability to successfully deal with the level 3 dog that they wish to adopt.  

4 – “Experienced Ownership Required”
Moderate, high or very high energy/drive. Needs an experienced owner familiar with working breed behavior to provide direct leadership and proper management. Level 4 dogs typically have a challenging behavior, but are good dogs. These dogs might be dog-reactive with most other dogs or dog-aggressive, may have to be an only animal in the home, maybe have moderate separation anxiety.  The dog normally needs daily physical and mental stimulation, etc. This level of dog is not an average pet. (We try to limit the number of level 4 dogs in our program.) A Potential Adopter for a level 4 dog must be able to demonstrate the experience and ability to safely manage and care for a level 4 dog.  

5 – “Competitive or Working Dog”
This is a dog that has an intense focus to ‘work’. It could be a dog that provides Search and Rescue services, could be a competitive Flyball or Agility dog, or has other working abilities. These dogs can be strong, pushy, dominant, and/or have extreme energy/drive. They need a professional handler or an owner who has the experience to provide a demonstrated commitment to the dog’s ‘working ability’. A Potential Adopter for a level 5 dog must be able to demonstrate the experience and ability to safely manage and care for a level 5 dog.