Kris Kotsopoulos - Von Forell - Αυστραλία



An Interview with Dobermann, German Shepherd breeder and K9 Trainer Kris Kotsopoulos from Von Forell International on his latest philosophy by Vithala Singh

Hi Kris tell us about yourself and history so we can know how you got involved in Working dogs and also German Shepherds, and also your current position as a supplier for Law Enforcement and Military and private security and also maybe sport.

Certainly Vit, it all began when a very good friend of mine, Jim Tokis whom was also behind some of the philosophy in my new tracking book, picked up our local news paper in 1981 pointing out a Dobermann litter that was available. I was in the market for a protection dog because my parents' home had been burgled four days prior, and so I convinced my father to take me to view the litter, I ended up taking a male puppy home.
That day was to change my whole life.
I began training my new dog for family protection and he served us well. My hunger for information about dog training increased over time and, I began to realise that my dog was a nice natured pet with only a medium desire to work. This realisation came to a head when I began working as a Security Officer and called upon my dog for support. Unfortunately he was unable to offer me the support I required. This incident was a lesson I would never forget and it propelled me into breeding working dogs.
Living in Australia in 1982 meant it was difficult to obtain information on the training or breeding of working dogs and everything I learnt at that stage was simply through trial and error. At the age of eighteen, I started a dog training school and from this period a great deal of progress was made in the training of dogs in Australia.
This was partially due to a number of International trainers visiting Australia to conduct seminars. Some of these events were extremely beneficial, and simultaneously destructive. The destruction was in part, due to the fact that everyone attending these seminars was at a different stage of learning with regards to their knowledge and abilities. Some attendees only had 2nd or 3rd hand knowledge without any practical experience. Naturally this caused conflict within working dog training groups around Australia.
With time and numerous discussions, it became clear that the direction I wished to take training and breeding of working dogs was different to others. In 1987 I went to Europe in search of the elusive super dog. I was introduced to a Dobermann in Belgium, which I imported into Australia. At the time he was quite a good dog compared to those in our country and he went on to produce some nice dogs. A few years later, other Dobermanns were brought into Australia offering some genetic diversity. I incorporated the appropriate dogs into my breeding program.
One soon realises that as your knowledge grows so do the expectations you place on your dogs. After many disappointments, you realize that there are not many dogs or bloodlines that can give you the type of animal you expect or desire. I had experimented with many of the Dobermann lines around the world and I had not been entirely satisfied with what they produced in character. I did see some amazing dogs from a particular bloodline that worked the way I wanted, but they were small animals and their conformation was; well let’s say they didn’t look like the Dobermann I grew to expect.
This particular breeder, whom I visited again in March 1999, had since improved the conformation of his dogs to a very good level as well as maintaining the superiority of his dogs' working temperament. Looking back, I believe I knew what I wanted and have since found what I was looking for. After travelling the world many times, training with and interviewing many influential breeders and trainers, I have come to understand their way of thinking in the breeding and training of dogs to work and have since developed my own thoughts on it also. I have discovered which bloodlines are working dog material and which individual dogs produce the traits I am personally looking for, in my view.
The thing about all this is that we make our selection based on our own world view. Most people today have not given much thought to their own world-view. In fact, many people do not even realize they have a worldview. Such people tend to think that all knowledge is acquired by unbiased observation of the evidence around us. This view is called "empiricism" and is itself a kind of worldview. We cannot help but have some beliefs about how the world works, how we attain knowledge. Even if we believe that we have no such beliefs — this is itself a belief.

So there's no escaping it. A worldview is inevitable. A rational worldview is not. Our worldview is a bit like mental glasses. It affects the way we view things. In the same way that a person wearing red glasses sees everything as red, a person wearing "Fixed behavioural" glasses as opposed to the correct behavioural glasses, see fixed behaviour every time. The world is not really red, nor is there the same behaviour every time but our behavioural glasses affect our perception of the world and the conclusions we draw.

On a personal note I hope that my new protection training book may be a little bit like corrective lenses on breeding and training and the complexity involved.

So to answer your question, currently we breed and supply dogs to the National community who want that little bit more from their dog. Some have gone to competition homes although that is an ever decreasing situation in our country due to the Dangerous dog Laws in my state, many go to families and finally some of our dogs are used by Police, Military and Correctional Services. In this country we have an immense shortage of quality service dogs and it is cost prohibitive for us to supply internationally produced dogs due to our quarantine restrictions, hence we have taken it on to develop our very own in house dogs that are bred and developed by Von Forell for the Law Enforcement community. We have been supplying, like many others a few here and there but finally I am proud to say we have began an elaborate program that will provide many dogs to Law Enforcement per year. Not unlike our Customs department, which is a global leader in the breeding of detection dogs. The difficulty is the vast capital investment required to create a breeding cell that operates at that level.


What sort of clientele do you have in terms of export (besides Vit Singh acquiring the best Gento son)?

We have a few International breeding programs pending as we speak. There are some very interesting people around the world that have some faith in the genes we have accumulated and I am sure it will work towards a global advantage. There are traits in these genes that I don’t see much off. The only thing we all need to agree on is that there are dogs for family, competition, police and of course breeding. They all have variation in qualities and trait requirements. The clients for export are usually breeders and competition handlers. Law Enforcement requires mature developed dogs and we are a global supplier of service dogs that we source from our global contacts for a given requirement. Almost all our International requirements are for Law Enforcement.


Living in Australia, please explain your methodology for setting up a breeding station there and the hindrances to such.

I realise that much of my success and failure is directly attributed to my level of understanding of behaviour, genetics, and genetic compatibility, behavioural and developmental traits, which are ultimately governed by selection. Living in a country like Australia makes it incredibly difficult to source and test the appropriate dogs due to its geographic isolation from the rest of the World. Hence extensive travel is the only possible way that enables me to source such dogs. Dogs of this quality rarely fall in your lap. You have to find them, test them, breed from them and hope they will reproduce their qualities.

Appropriate selection was therefore the turning point in my breeding which incidentally also steered my training. The moment I made a decision that I would personally test and select all the dogs that would contribute to the gene pool is the time my breeding forged into the direction I envisioned, knowing very well that the entire process is evolutionally and in principle I always question what is and isn’t working. There are many times it just does not work for multiple reasons which are too numerous to get into here.

Vit, there was a time I believed I was being mislead by my sources, because the results I was achieving were nowhere near my expectations, but I quickly deduced that contrary to my beliefs, that the reality was that my sources did not have the knowledge depth and were often selecting traits contrary to what I was looking for in appropriate working dog traits. Over time it also became apparent that global training systems were also polarised and that not many agreed on how to achieve optimum training responses from dogs.

Hence for me breeding and training works hand in hand. We need to breed the right dogs and then train them which becomes a positive feedback loop. The more you can see about your dogs the better your choices will be.
I believe one without the other can’t work. So for me my mission was to thoroughly understand both disciplines (Breeding and Training) intimately but nature will always surprise you. That’s the beauty in this whole thing. That’s what keeps me going. The only thing that disappoints me is that my dogs don’t get titled these days. I am so busy with running five companies that there is little time to actually train for the sport however I am an avid fan of training and thoroughly recommend all people do the sport. My wife and I make it our mission to travel annually and visit the WUSV and all my friends to keep up with the latest, not to mention it’s a great time away.

Knowing very well that the opportunity to compete in Schutzhund is difficult for me we consistently test and measure our dog’s capability to ensure that the traits we require are there. I personally subject my dogs to all types of testing to ensure they meet my expectations, probably far harder than necessary but I have grown to realise that in order to expose the good and the bad, environmental pressure is the only way to expose these behaviours and most importantly as a breeder we must throw out all the excuses. I am tired of excuses - the dog is either good or it is not.


In the past who are the people that have helped you from other countries, influential Europeans. Also from whom do you get the ideology of breeding, or is it your own creation?

If there is one thing I have learnt and is that there is not much out there that is original, things are usually re hashed or rebadged in some shape or form. Much of the information is out there but it is scattered in remote places around the globe and my mission was to find it. One of the things I have grown to realise is that people don’t think about these matters deep enough hence the lack of true in depth understanding. Many years of practical work and theorising with many people around the world has driven me to this point in my life. Along the way, there were several people who attributed to the knowledge contained in my philosophy, in ways they probably aren’t even aware of. It’s not just the Europeans that have the knowledge there are people all over the world, Africa, USA and our own country has some brilliant people. I know most dog people here in Australia and I must say I am proud to know them. They are deep thinkers, intelligent and driven. If I could only unite them emotionally and geographically we would see some wonderful results on the World Stage.
Now that you ask me this question it makes me think about it deeply. I want to thank the following people for the many long hours of in-depth discussion and practical applications that proved extremely successful in my breeding and training philosophy. Steve Tolis from Australia for his breeding philosophy, Jim Tokis from Australia for his precise detail in selection in training, Dr Helmut Raiser from Germany for his wisdom and unification of global training systems, Koos Hassing for selling me a dog that changed our country. Donn Yarnall (LAPD) for training philosophies that constantly evolve.

These people have devoted a large part of their lives to come to the scientific breeding and training conclusions that inspired my breeding and training sequences. It was and still is the subtle things and the power of observation that make a tremendous difference in coming to these conclusions which are forever evolving for me.

Additionally there are many other breeders and trainers that have contributed to the overall philosophy and to all of them I say - THANK YOU. My breeding philosophy has developed over a long time and has also been influence by the global demand and requirements in training.

I know what type of dog and behaviour I want and consequently look for the dogs that posses these behaviours and traits. Hence why we have such a large frozen gene bank. Many of the dogs I liked in the past I had to freeze in an effort for our females to catch up or exceed their qualities so that we could use the appropriate dogs. There is no perfect dog but the right female will make all the difference if it clicks. Blending the old lines with the modern lines is difficult as they are different dogs but they both have traits that are quality. The old dogs in the late 70’s and 80’s seem to have been a little more robust but the new dogs have better drives, grip and conformation.
The old dogs would not cut it in our modern world and its current demands particularly in the sport of Schutzhund however they offer some fundamental traits that are missing today, mainly hardness, robustness, calmness a little more edge in their attitude to humans when provoked yet sensible, which is what all dogs should be but hey good luck trying to find them.
Most dogs are so highly geared these days that they are becoming impossible to live with. I like drive but not drive that drives me nuts.


People have asked me …so what is the secret to breeding good dogs?

And my answer is … buy a load of dogs, breed them for 31 years, travel the world for 25 years and see how you go. Unfortunately you can’t gain knowledge about how to read behaviour from just text books, it takes years of experience. It takes forever and so does the ability to read dogs. For me observing dog behaviour in protection training is like looking at a photo of a galaxy. Most people see a hazy elliptical blob but any physicist or astronomer will tell you that a galaxy is mind blowing if you knew how it functioned.  There are stars, planets, moons, asteroids, comets, solar systems, governed by gravitational fields, dark matter and black holes that defy complete understating from the human mind. I think you get my meaning. That is what I see when I watch dogs work to make a selection for breeding.


Please elaborate on the story of the lady who worked within the DDR system and received remuneration of breeding stock from East Germany and how that has impacted on Australia's and your breeding program.

I knew a gentleman in Melbourne who was from the Czech Republic and by all accounts quite a controversial personality. He knew the owner of three or four DDR dogs that were brought to Australia in the late 70 and early 80”s. There were three females and one male I believe. The male was an Ex v Reidstern son called Don von Trafalgar. These dogs produced some really intense animals and I now realise that one of them Amando Yonny DDR epitomises the “OPITIMUM FUCTION ZONE” model that I conceptually talk about.

When I watch the Videos of Amando Yonny “Kirt” as he was called I see my Von Forell Pamela and her three brothers in 1997. Kirt was well respected in my city and rightly so.

I worked him as did many others. He was a great dog and a pleasure to see and it proved we subconsciously knew what a great working dog was but had never really been taught what to look for, or how to identify them. I guess not knowing how to explain it either, hence why there are people who just have a breeders eye and who breed great dogs but can never really tell what makes a breeding dog.

Now as the story went, apparently the dogs were selected and sent to the owners in Melbourne Australia as a political favour and what a favour, it absolutely revolutionised the breeding in our state and by sheer chance we had a dog called Ingo v Hafenlorhtal Sch 111 who was a Lido v Allmannspfort grandson and a Bodo lierburg great grandson that was bred to the old DDR lines and produced some of the best producers we had ever seen here. In addition we had a Marko Cellerland son here as well that combined well with the Bodo and Ex lines. To date nothing has produced that overall calmness, cool, clear headed, hard and active aggressive dog like Stobar Hardt did. We have frozen semen from Stobar Hardt “Vulcan” as he was called (thanks to Neville Williams – the pioneer of working dogs in Australia) and we shall be using him in around two years. I have the females that are bred to suit him and too date they are the right character. These old dogs needed a little more agility and higher drives which my females have and I guess we shall see if it all works.


What are the major divergences you see nowadays between Sport dogs and Working dogs, and is it more now than ever before? Are there good dogs in the past, like Gento or Hassan, that you admire traits of, that did not necessarily occupy the podium in the sports?

The only difference I see as a general rule is the level of active aggression towards humans. It has decreased significantly. Quality aggression, which may sound strange is in decline and has been for a while. I am not talking about dogs that want to bite people indiscriminately but an aggression or some self assuredness when provoked, and the reflexive behaviour that is exhibited that depicts absolute sureness under stimulation. If we observe the evolution of working dog breeding and training there is one thing that is obvious; that being, the results that breeders and trainers have achieved to date have been created by conscious or unconscious design. Over time breeders in the show ring have selectively bred for a low prey drive dog for ease of handling, but in doing so have created a innately unbalanced dog. It is also true that highly specialized working kennels have created the opposite imbalance where if the dog is not constantly at work (in a world where opportunities for such are reducing rapidly) they are also highly subject to behavioural disturbances.  To add to the disparity, the majority of working kennels are intentionally eliminating aggressive tendencies favouring the promotion of prey instincts solely, creating further unbalanced working behaviours. I do agree however, as responsible breeders we must address the issue of undesirable and unmanageable defensive aggression in dogs in the interest of public safety, but we must simultaneously address the issue that we are in avertedly producing dogs that lack strength of character producing reactive dogs that consequently develop maladaptive behaviours far more easily. Defensive aggression is highly undesirable and certainly unfavourable in working dog circles; however the active aggression that manifests from my “optimum Function Zone’ model is predictable, stable and manageable and in my opinion should be highly sort after. It is not my intention to say which of the polar extremes is right or wrong, rather than, as breeders have specialized their dogs specifically for their own desires that the resulting unbalanced dog does on average make a very poor family pet. The key for all breeders is to achieve a balanced dog through careful selection and to ensure that the right people are trained with sound training principles to own such dogs. I believe a detailed evaluation of a dog’s emotional reactivity should be done prior to any serious attempts at training and or breeding, emphasising the importance on the reliance of identifying a dogs personal thresholds and reactivity potential and adjust any training methods accordingly to best suit the individual concerned. Hence why, in my opinion the “Optimum Function Zone” model is a better approach in evaluating a dog’s innate thresholds and emotional reactivity to testing, training and breed worthiness.  This “Optimum Function Zone” is unique, heritable and visually identifiable and can be a bench mark for future assessment and there is less reliance on the adjustment of training methods to suit, simply because these dogs are far more adaptive.


Any advice you may have for persons who want to choose breeding partners for their stock and primarily use the sport world as their choices.

Yes I have a lot of advice. Firstly you will never see the dog in its entirety when choosing dogs for breeding from the sporting world. Every breeding system has its own assets and liabilities. Every breeding system evolves out of need and cultural influence. The sport if not careful can create a gene pool where there is less behavioural diversity and I believe it is happening now. The same applies to individual countries. West Germany, East Germany, Cz Republic, Slovenia, Sweden they all have their own qualities and problems. There are no perfect dogs nor perfect training systems and by default we are all left with our personal opinions so my world view is that the West German dogs today generally have solid nerves and nice drives. The DDR dogs mostly have low prey drives and look nice but their nerves are questionable. Some Czech dogs are similar with low motivation for obedience and so on. Now let’s clarify this. I am not saying all these specific bloodlines are like that but I am emphasising the general behavioural pattern. For me I look at what I like, what I have and what my breeding requires. It does not need the latest Import; it needs the correct dog to further the breeding program. It needs good health for sustainability and longevity. Every dog and its bloodlines have issues and that’s the way it is. It’s all about selection and in this case we are talking about working dogs with correct character, and the better you get at identifying correct character and selecting for it the better the dogs you produce will become. It has nothing do to if the dog won the BSP, WUSV or Sieger Show.


Here is the advice:

I know now that conventional breeding and training philosophies and models of working dog behaviour generally convey ambiguity and are filled with contradiction. There are hypothesis, which claim that canine behaviour accurately reflects mindset reality. Although behaviour should reflect mindset reality I seldom find this to be the truth. Humanity is only just embarking on the deep understanding necessary to consistently create and work with dogs that express powerful working canine behaviour. Few people understand it let alone are able to convey it.  Dogs that operate within an “Optimum Function Zone” of which I conceptually refer to contradict conventional drive theories and consequently exhibit far more predictive responses. They display less volatility with negative feedback loops and if anything mentally grow and develop a form of mental inoculation even if treated irrationally. As a result they are adaptive in nature and appear to acquire a buffer of tolerance or adaptive optimism that enables them to cope more effectively with uncertainty. Adaptive dogs tend to adjust to error in a proactive way, reactive dogs by nature operate outside the realm of an “Optimum Function Zone” and tend merely to react to negative feedback without learning from it and remain inhibited causing maladaptive behaviours and negative feedback loops. My focus in my life is on training, the relationship to breeding and the reflexive feedback loops that characterize dog behaviour and most importantly ‘powerful’ working dog behaviour. There are two kinds of feedback, negative and positive. Negative feedback is self-correcting, and positive feedback is self reinforcing.  Thus, negative feedback sets up a tendency toward equilibrium, but negative and positive ‘emotional’ feedback within the “Optimum Function Zone” sets up a dual feedback system producing “dynamic equilibrium”.

Representation of the cycle

This is not to say that these adaptive dogs should be treated with disrespect, quite the contrary. Access to knowledge regarding genetic selection and animal learning (canine learning) establishes that such dogs are easier to train and maintain robust responses because they are naturally more forgiving.  I am a strong believer that breeders and trainers should be focusing their attention on these dogs which will in fact give the World behavioural predictability.


Do you have sport dogs now in Europe that you like for their ability to transmit their traits to real work...

I have seen many dogs over the years but there are some dogs we have Australia that are quite impressive. As always in my country they are either in the hands of the inexperienced or owners who are only interested in having the dog as a family guardian, however some are committed to training for their own satisfaction.
I am unable to comment of what is happening in Europe in detail but as a whole I find these days I can’t get away from certain blood lines which have infiltrated most breeding lines of which I prefer not to comment about.
What I will say is that the quality in the last 7 years is the most improvement in the European gene pool I have experienced in decades. Training philosophies are brilliant from brilliant people. I do know that a mixture of the gene pools West, East and CZ works for me, but hey let’s not forget that they all come from the same origin – West Germany. I am currently writing about all this in my protection training book due for release this year. It is philosophical as much as it is technical and I will eventually refer to the behaviours described above in video on our website for people to begin to visualise and identify for future reference, my only limitation currently is time and resources, nevertheless is must be done for the benefit of the working breeds, German Shepherds, Dobermanns, Rottweilers and the Malinois. They may appear visually different but the fundamental behavioural traits of a quality dog is the same.


Please elaborate on the methodology of producing a female from your kennel or finding one otherwise that is worthy of the males from which you have frozen semen

There have been many good dogs over the years and unfortunately some of these dogs were underutilised. I am sure there are many people kicking themselves for not doing a mating they now know they should have or have seen males that were never mated to that ideal female. I am sure we have all said imagine if we had that male now 20 – 30 years later.
Well the dogs I have saved were great for their time and offered traits I liked and they operated within this zone I am talking about. Finding the correct female for them was almost impossible. Firstly because not many existed and secondly because we could not really identify them, hence I took it upon myself to breed a female line that I can utilise some of the dogs I have in the frozen semen bank. This way I am able to diligently control what I produce by testing and selection our dogs and when that right female comes along I will use my males on ice and potentially produce the balance I am looking for. I have so much diversity in frozen semen that my program will never reach a point of inbreeding decline and to test this we conducted inbreeding coefficient testing with a genetic laboratory in Australia to establish how close we are. The results were promising and concluded that we can in breed for 7 generations before the genes begin to get too close in both my Dobermann and German Shepherd Breeding programme.


Some people may think that you are a DDR/Czech GSD breeder.... what do you say to that and can you give more details on how you have combined the major bloodlines like WGR, DDR and Czech

I am a German Shepherd breeder and have no preference to any particular country or cultural influence, just like my Dobermanns. I look for what I admire and I do my best to test the dog myself or the very least watch the dog being trained in multiple environments.
Seeing its sire and dam helps me and of course siblings where possible to see any consistencies, positive or negative. I am not a breeder that breeds one type over another. Each line has its traits and it’s our job as breeders to identify the traits we want and get away from the marketing we are steered by. It’s old and antiquated and has no real merit in the grand scheme of things. A good dog is a good dog, no matter which country and no matter who owns it, it’s really that simple. When we stop judging dogs by the owners we shall all move forward in hurry.


Please elaborate on the theory of optimal zones. How does this influence your choices of breeding stock? Also, can you give examples of dogs in the past who worked in that zone, and are there any names of dogs now from Europe that we might recognise?

This answer will be scattered throughout my next book on breeding and protection training but I will give you a glimpse into my current thoughts.

For some time, I have been observing and working with protection dog trainers and the results they achieve. From these careful observations and from discussions with many, my observation is that the root of the confusion that most dogs seem to have is that they are unsure of what is expected of them and or are simply genetically unequipped to meet protection dog training demands. This confusion is also a result of a decoys lack of awareness and or the inability to work with the inherited reflexive mechanism that high drive dogs operate from. Incidentally I prefer to describe protection training as “drive fulfilment training” or “reinforcing instinctive behaviour to achieve drive fulfilment”. The phrase “protection training” is a human generated term which creates ambiguity in our community’s emotions and I must confess it generates conflicting emotions in me. Although the phrase “Protection Training” seems to convey what appears to be transpiring in the general public eyes, the reality is that there is much more occurring than meets the eye; through the positive reinforcement of naturally occurring instincts, nothing like the community perceives.

From my standpoint as a canine trainer, this view and book is geared towards the apparent complexity of the process. This complexity can be simplified when the correct steps are taken to ensure that all components that make aquality dog are in place and in the right order. To the working handler of such dogs, it is my hope there will be a better understanding in the area of breeding, selection and training of working dogs that has never been quite fully understood before. To my fellow trainers, I hope my world view in this book will provide a deep inquiry on how we get from the nest to a dog that is full of instinctive expression harnessed by thoughtful scientific training models.

The information presented is philosophical as much as it is technical and is orientated to all elements that must be present before complex training can commence with a view that every training session must be a structured and a positive occasion for the dog and handler with the idea that thoughtless forced learning will only lead to resistance and make application of this theory almost impossible.

The correct dog is also as critical for a quality result. For if all the correct behaviours are not instinctually present, our job of mental and physical preparation is impossible for any working dog application.

Additionally care needs to be exercised so that the dog is not over stimulated as its cognitive function wil be impaired as much as if the dog is experiencing anxiety and fear. The chemical imbalance in the brain reduces cognitive functioning and poor learning results in the dog:

Unfortunately for dogs, once conditioned fears are learned, they can be amplified and encoded as relatively permanent emotional memories that distort reality. Stress is a fairly ubiquitous phenomenon in the life of most dogs and dogs don’t have the cognitive ability to be cured with psychotherapy. The right dose of negative feedback is therefore critical and is determined by each and every dog’s individual reflexive mechanism and thresholds.

It gets much deeper and too deep for this interview but it will all be in the book. The above are some traits and responses that we must take into consideration and they influence my choice in the dog I breed with and the dogs in the past that exhibit or produced were German Shepherds - Gento v Haus Larwin, Robby Glockeneck, Hassan V Gruntal, Amando Yonny DDR in Melbourne, Dares zum Geradonu, Link v Muikenshof, Tom vant Leefdaalhof, Stobar Hardt, Von Forell Pamela and her three brothers, Queck v der Kroteck, Amando Victor, Stormfronts Brawnson, Sirk v Haus Antverpa, Dobermanns - Kleo v der Weyermühle, Ilo v der Weyermühle, Gero vd Mooreiche, Gero Mooreiche, a male dobermann in Melbourne currently and of course there are others which I will mention on the website.

I will eventually be uploading these visual traits on our website for the book upon its release so that the “Optimal Function Zone” model is identifiable. Many of my international colleagues have wished me luck for they comment that there are not many people that will recognise them. I tend to disagree, the world is getting smaller and smarter and I believe people will see it, maybe not in the short term but definitely in the long term as their world view evolves.


It has been said that you are a futurist tell us about the Embryonic Transfer and Cloning project Von Forell International have been working on.

In 1999 a Veterinary Surgeon that was working out of Melbourne who had a government grant for Embryonic Transfer assisted me in flushing ova from my 11 year old female “Tanne v d Gleisdreick” Sch 111 FH. Tannne was a Lord v Gleisdreick daughter which I am sure you are familiar with. Dr Metcalfe flushed 10 ova from Tanne and inseminated five with Hassan V Gruntal Sch 1 DDR and Natan V Busecker Schloss Sch111 FH and the ova did in fact fertilise and showed cleavage. The ova were then frozen for an opportune time in the future to be implanted into a surrogate mother. Unfortunately technology has not caught up yet and we are waiting for the day when we will have Tanne puppies in the 21st Century. The reality is there is not enough money in dogs for the technology to warrant capital investment. If they were cattle or horses it may have happened by now. I am happy to accept financial contribution from anyone in the world that has some funding available and make this happen. It will be a World first. So please feel free to contact me on

About a year later I asked Dr Metcalfe if we could take skin samples from certain dogs in a future effort to clone them when the technology would catch up. We took samples of Tanne v d Gleisdreick Sch 111 FH, Hassan v Gruntal Sch1 DDR, Fax v Grenzganger Sch 11 FH, Security Tolis, and Asa v Haus Gebets. Well would you believe a few years ago the Koreans cloned one Afghan hound and seven Labradors. You can see what we are up to on these links


I believe working alongside a quality breeding program cloning, if it works; will create a situation where global breeding systems can develop exponentially. People can have access to those great dogs in every country simultaneously and the raw character traits in theory should be the same manipulated only by environment. Wouldn’t it be interesting to see individual training systems and their impact on cloned dogs? Imagine what can be achieved on a breeding and training level. I will leave that image in your minds to ponder.

I love technology and Von Forell International is a company that is driven by science, technology and the future.

I hope this sheds some light on what we are up too Vit and thank you for asking the questions. I look forward to meeting up with you in Miami or Europe. 

I would be interested in hearing from anyone regarding this subject and I welcome any communication via the contact details below.