Mittelwest German Shepherds / unethical breeding
I've been waiting to write this review since March. It's a very hard review to leave because it was a very hard time in my life. Zepplin "Levi" John Von Mittelwest was born on 1-28-2018 (Kondor/Gracie litter) and this is HIS story. I researched Mittelwest for quite sometime before putting a deposit down on first pick of the male in this litter. I wanted a healthy, beautiful, big boy.
On March 5th I found an article on the pedigree database (http://www.pedigreedatabase.com/german_shepherd_dog/community.read?post=900699-beware-of-julie-martinez-and-grant-smith-of-mittelwest) about Julie's kennel having a Parvo outbreak. In the documents it stated that her property was cleared by the Department of Agriculture. I confronted her at that time and asked if Levi got sick with Parvo would she pay for care. She told me (in an e-mail so I have proof) that yes she would. She stated that only two puppies that came in from Germany had the Parvo and they weren't even at her kennel for 24 hours and had went to their homes. Now I know it wasn't just those 2 puppies do to a news report done by CBS Chicago. The Parvo spread through her kennel. She didn't say anything to anyone about it. If, I hadn't seen the website or asked her about it she never would have told me about it. It was right before we were to pick up Levi on March 23rd, 2018. After talking to her I felt safe bringing him home because she made it seem like only the 2 puppies had it and her kennel was cleaned. My fault for trusting her. But, if I wouldn't have gotten "Levi" when I did I'm sure that he would have lived. So fast forward. We picked up Levi on March 23rd (he wasn't 8 weeks yet) and by the 24th he was showing signs of being sick. He had thrown up on the way home and had diarrhea but at that time we really didn't think anything of it because he was on his first road trip of 3 1/2 hours. So the 25th rolled around and I knew there was something really wrong with him. I called the vet on the morning of March 26th to get him in asap. That is when he tested positive for Parvo (the test was already turning positive within a minute). Julie was contacted by me from the vet's office and she paid that bill with her credit card ($450.00). On the 28th I had to pick up more medications and IV fluids and she again paid for those things ($100.00). The vet said that he should be hospitalized so I talked to Julie (breeder) about it and she said to call around. I called around and the price would range anywhere from $1500-$3000 depending on what tests, medications, food, etc he would need. I told Julie and she stated that was way too much money. That I could bring him back to her and she would take care of him or I could take care of him at home. I was NOT going to bring him back to her!! One I was not bring a Parvo puppy back to her property to infect more puppies. Two I was not going to trust her to take care of him properly. And, three I wasn't going to drive another 7 hours total, then turn around and maybe drive another 7 hours to go get him if he survived there. So she sent me somethings and told me to give him them (medications). Hell no was I going to give him anything that she sent (actually Grant sent). It had poop on it, it was all gross on the outside of the bottles/tubes, and inside the box was disgusting (I do have pictures to prove the condition of the supplies). So, I talked to my vet and we put him on a different medication (I paid for it) and for the next 17 days took care of him here at my home. Yes he made it after all of my nursing care 24/7. During this process I contacted one of the people that said something about the Parvo outbreak on the pedigree data base. Come to find out she had a Parvo puppy from a group of 5 that came in from Germany. (She no longer has him, he was sold to someone else after he recovered) We became friends and started talking. I Skyped and interview with the news reporter Pam Zekeman on 4-19-2018 talking about my story with Levi. Here is the link to the news report https://www.facebook.com/cbschicago/videos/10156555605728338/ And, then comes today and moving forward. Levi has damage to his intestines from having the Parvo and will need to be on a probiotic for the rest of his life (out of my pocket). Right now he is on a special food and we won't know if he will also need this food the rest of his life (out of my pocket). Julie did end up giving me back $2000.00 of the $4000.00 purchase price of Levi. This was an amount that I gave her for all the care that I had to give to him to make him healthy and to get him through the Parvo. When I gave her that figure I didn't know at that time that he would need probiotics and special food for the rest of his life. If, I wouldn't have read about the Parvo outbreak at Julie's kennel (Mittelwest German Shepherds) I would have never known about the Parvo outbreak because no one at Mittelwest Kennels said anything about it. Not Julie nor Grant or any workers.
Updated by Levi's Owner, Jun 21, 2018
I also want to point out that Levi had a broken tail when we picked him up and has an overbite. As of today we are also still figuring out how to stop his diarrhea. The vet thinks this could be damage done from the Parvo and maybe a life long thing for him. We will work with Levi to get him as healthy as possible because we love him and he's been through so much in his little life.