German Shepherd Safe Haven put out a call for foster homes and I wanted to help. I had a 12 year old shepherd and knew that with the right care and training, GSD's are wonderful pets. Tom and Jen know the dogs they rescue very well. They take time and patience to learn about the dogs, begin training and give them a healthy new start. After a month it was clear that the biography I'd read of my foster dog was completely accurate. They were always available to answer questions and give good advice. As I got to know the dog, I was also asked for my feedback about the suitability of the dog for potential forever families. I tried, I really tried, to be a good foster family. Of course, we fell in love and realized two German Shepherds were better than one. We failed as fosters but we were only comfortable with a rescue dog because she came from the honest, hard-working and loving hands of this rescue. We continue to rely on them for advice and know that we have professional help if we need it to give our new dog a happy life.
I have been fostering German Shepherds with GSSH for a year and a half. What a wonderful organization!! Tom, who runs GSSH, is 100% dedicated to his mission of saving these dogs. Anything I have needed has been immediately provided- vet visits, medications, advice, or supplies. He always responds promptly, and is interested in how things are going. Our community is so lucky to have Tom and the German Shepherd Safe Haven!!!
Since GSSH was formed in 2010, Jen and Tom have worked diligently almost every day, to put together a Top Rated German Shepherd Rescue in the United States, as rated by GreatNonprofits thru 2015, and are working toward that achievement again in 2016. Not to bad!!! As to one of the many reasons why they have earned this top rating status, please check out the very special GSSH Forever Family stories at
It’s important to note, they have done all this without any monetary compensation for themselves. Instead, they rely exclusively on their great volunteer family that continues to grow each year, generous donations from others that share their German Shepherd Rescue Mindset and some Great Corporate Sponsorship's that all contribute to keeping the GSSH stated mission alive and well!
If your looking to give back to your community by volunteering for a Top Rated German Shepherd Rescue in the United States, Go To the GSSH Website and complete an on-line application! Tom and Jen will welcome you with open arms!
If your looking to donate the change in your pocket or a few dollars more, it is so very much appreciated by this Great Nonprofit organization! Their website has a number of options you can choose for making a financial donation!
GSSH also reaches out to the generosity and support of corporations. If you own or are a part of a corporation that would like to learn more about a GSSH corporate sponsorship, please consider giving the Rescue a call to learn more about the mutual benefits involved! THANKS!!!
I am very proud to be a volunteer and donor for GSSH!
There are almost 2 million Nonprofits in the United States today that are seeking donations and volunteers for their special cause.
How do you determine which ones to donate to? Or volunteer with?
Organizations receiving the Top Rated Nonprofit Award from Great Nonprofits, is what many donors and volunteers look for today before they make these important decisions.
This award is one of the most trusted seals of approval any nonprofit can receive and it has to be earned. Under 1% of nonprofits nationwide have been able to achieve this Top-rated status.
When it comes to animal welfare nonprofits, no organization does it better than Tom and Jen’s GSSH. They receive this Top Rated Nonprofit Award from Great Nonprofits year after year.
Here is one story of many as to why this is.
In the last year, their organization rescued Sammie, a very sweet and loving female German Shepherd puppy from a high kill shelter in LA, CA. After being rescued, Sammie was diagnosed with Exocrine Pancreatic Insufficiency, (EPI). Sammie’s Pancreas is unable to produce the digestive enzymes needed to break down the food she eats. She was rapidly losing weight no matter how much she ate.
Jen, GSSH co-founder, quickly became an EPI specialist and put Sammie on a specific food regimen that included necessary enzymatic additives that eventually helped to stabilize the weight loss. Each Sammie meal requires half an hour prep time. Jen showed great patience, understanding and provided some very special love while taking care of Sammie. Sammie responded and has now put on a lot of the lost weight and looks great. She is now ready to be adopted by her future forever family.
Sammie’s special diet has come with a monthly price tag. Great organizations attract some great volunteers. And GSSH volunteers, Ehab & Mary, stepped up and are currently sponsoring Sammie.
Again, this is one of many inspiring stories why GSSH is among the very Elite in Nonprofits.
A great organization for your donation and volunteer consideration
In March 2015 my family and I adopted a dog from GSSH. After a period of time, we made the painful decision that the adoption was not the right fit. We surrendered our dog back to Tom, the founder of GSSH, and, though we knew it was the right decision, we mourned the loss, and the fact that we just weren't the right family for the dog, for a long time. Weeks after the surrender, I spoke with Tom many times, going so far as to speaking with a potential adopter. We wanted the best for the dog, and I wanted to take part in finding the right home. I'm happy to report that Adriana has found her forever home--I met her daddy just this past weekend during a pack hike.
Yes, I'm still very much involved with GSSH. I volunteer at showcase events, doing my part to help the GSDs find their forever homes. I'm also volunteering for the organization by writing their quarterly newsletter. After we surrendered Adriana, my family and I could have easily, from shame and embarrassment that the adoption didn't work, moved on and never had contact with Tom or GSSH. We did not; we remained involved and committed to the dogs and what the organization stands for: to find forever homes for dogs that have had a rough go at life.
I share this story to counter the negative reviews that a certain person has compulsively and obsessively left on this website. The person in question, whom I personally met just prior to her her adoption of Seth (who became Shane), is doing a disservice to the dogs that Tom and Jen rescue from shelters in order to place them in their forever homes. The responsibility they have to the dogs is enormous. If the home they place the dogs in are not the right fit, they have a responsibility to make tough decisions for the betterment of the dogs. And that decision to pull a dog is not an easy decision; it breaks the spirit of everyone who is involved in the GSSH when a home doesn't work out.
I had the honor, at the last pack hike, to meet dogs who were adopted out into their forever homes YEARS ago. When they see Tom, they get so excited and happy, seeking out his affection and attention. These are not dogs who were mistreated by Tom; these are dogs who were saved by Tom. He has given his life to the organization and his dogs. I urge some people to put this into perspective in their attempts to slander the organization; you are only hurting the future GSSH dogs in finding their forever homes.
I have been volunteering with this rescue since January 2015 and am absolutely in love with the dogs we help and the rescue itself. I firmly believe that everyone involved with the rescue has only the best interest of the dogs in their hearts. Sometimes this can be a struggle, as a volunteer how can you not want to take these beauties home every day? If I had a mansion, believe me I would. But again, this rescue is all about the dogs and finding them the forever home they deserve. Tom, Jen and the other volunteers care deeply for every dog that comes into the rescue. This starts the moment the dog is rescued and truly never ends. You will never hear GSSH boast about how many dogs they've adopted out and how quickly they've done it because they believe in careful and proper placement every time. This minimizes the chance that a dog will end up back in a shelter or on the streets, and GSSH makes sure this never happens to their dogs. Although I have only been with the rescue for a year I have witnessed first hand the good this rescue has done for the shepherds. Many of the forever families stay in contact with the rescue and tell us of how happy they are to be a part of the GSSH family. GSSH takes great care in rescuing, fostering, and adopting out dogs. This can be a lengthy process because Tom and Jen take great care to get to know and understand every single dog that is rescued, and work on any issues they may have. This also applies to getting to know potential adopters, and families that have adopted. By knowing the dog and the family GSSH is able to make sure dogs are placed in a home that will be the best for them, forever. They also provide continued support to families to make sure the dog is well taken care of and the family is provided with guidance if any issues arise. As a lover of all dogs, but especially German Shepherds, I know that proper care and ownership is key to helping this breed. I have seen GSSH work to create a better rep, and better lives, for these dogs and plan to stay as a volunteer for a very long time.
I have been involved with this rescue since late 2011 and you could not find a better group of people. Tom and Jen know what it takes to operate a rescue the way it should run, where the dog comes first, nothing else. If the dog is not the right fit for the family, then they don't allow them to adopt. German Shepherds are a special breed and not for everyone. Tom and Jen make sure that the dog is the best fit and that is what sets them apart from other rescue groups. Their follow-up is incredible and it gives the forever families peace of mind knowing you have them to help you work through a problem after the adoption. I have seen first hand Tom help people with their German Shepherds that were not even adopted from their group. These were families that wanted to surrender their dogs to the organization and were at their wits end and he turned the situation around with some training advice and the families were able to keep their dog in the end. I am very proud to be part of the German Shepherd Safe Haven Family. You could say I found my forever home! Great dogs, Great people and a superior organization!
I am very proud to volunteer for the GSSH pack. This organization has such an incredible group of people who are completely dedicated to saving the lives of German Shepherds. Tom founder and Jen co-founder of GSSH, have built something amazingly special here in Orange County, CA! I absolutely LOVE this organization!!
Every GSSH dog rescued has their own before and after story. You can read about them over at the GSSH website. http://germanshepherdsafehaven.org
What’s truly amazing is that all of them seem to understand that their life has just been saved. GSSH adoptive pet parents can attest to this. In turn, our appreciative GSSH dogs are determined to reward their new best fit adopting family with an exceptionally close and enduring forever relationship. The bonds that are and will be formed are incredible! If you're planning to add a four-legged family member to your household, it doesn’t get better than that!
Check out our current scheduled Showcase Events listed at the GSSH website and then come on by and say hello. The GSSH dogs would love to meet you and show you their appreciation, just for visiting. And of course the GSSH volunteers would love to give you an up to date “411” on GSSH and their dogs!
If your looking for a close and enduring pet relationship, I certainly hope you’ll consider opening your home to one of our amazing GSSH dogs that is also looking for this kind of relationship with you!
GSSH has a warm and caring staff, who really want the best for the dogs in their care! They are professional and kind. The dogs are well-behaved as well as beautiful! Tom and his staff are the absolute best!
My daughter and I are new volunteer for GSSH. In our short time with the group we have learned that the founders and the other volunteers care deeply for all of the German Shepherds. The founders take great care to match the dogs with their Forever Families. It is clear that the dog is first in all considerations. The dogs they rescue are well mannered and trained.
My daughter has always loved GSD and when we met one of the founders, we decided it would be a great way to spend time with these beautiful and intelligent dogs without actually owning one. But, if we were to adopt a German Shepard, we would do so from GSSH because we know that the dog would be matched to us and more importantly, we would be matched to the dog.
I have read some of the other reviews and most say it so much better than I can.
We enjoy the Monthly Showcases where we meet the public (potential adopters) and give them information about the organization and the dogs. It is very true about the description on their website: “a fun group of people who find joy in simple things like a tail wag or a sloppy doggie kiss” The tail wags and abundant sloppy doggie kisses are a wonderful way to spend a few hours a month.
GSSH is the greatest local nonprofit organization. I am proud to say I am a volunteer with this organization. They really have a passion for German Shepherds and put the dogs needs first. They really take the time necessary to ensure their furbabies are going to a forever home and will be happy and safe. I always recommend the GSSH and hope to one day adopt a furbaby from them myself. Such an inspiring, genuine organization. GSSH is the best! =)
German Shepherd Safe Haven is a terrific foundation. Not only do they love each and every one of these wonderful dogs that cross their path, but they also truly take care of them and put their needs first. They make sure the dogs are healthy, spayed/neutered, and up to date with all of their shots. GSSH is also sure to train and discipline every dog that is welcomed into the GSSH in order to make sure their new owners will be happy and satisfied with their new member of the family.
They have created an extensive process in order to adopt their German Shepherds. Not because they want to be difficult, but because they want to be 100% sure that each dog is placed in the right home in every single story. They have yet to have any unsuccessful stories, and I anticipate (with their process) they won't run into any. This process also helps "weed out" the people/families who aren't willing to go through all of the responsibilities an addition to the household can be. I instantly fell in love with every single dog I work with and met, and am so lucky to be able to meet new dogs and be a part of their journey. Thank you GSSH for creating this great community and organization! =)