Channel 7 Out & About South West Florida with Shelzsmide K9s

german shephard recsue dogs

South West Florida German Shepherd Rescue

South West Florida German Shepherd Rescue:

Erik Hoffer | (941) 575-0243 |

Shelzsmide K9s works with a number of rescue groups in Southwest Florida. Over the years we have worked closely with South West Florida German Shepherd Rescue in helping to train some of their more challenging dogs for placement in a new home. If you’re considering adopting a GSD, we would love to introduce you to Erik Hoffer of South West Florida German Shepherd Rescue.

Erik has been running South West Florida German Shepherd Rescue for seven years. Prior to that, he has an additional 18 years involvement in dog rescue and training. Erik first got into rescuing dogs when he lived in New Jersey. He would use his own pets, a German Shepherd and a Golden Retriever, to do therapy visits at nursing homes and schools. His work didn’t go unnoticed and he was soon asked to help train shelter dogs. Erik fell in love with the German Shepherd breed and has made a commitment to do whatever he can to help the big, lovable creatures.

Erik pays for as much as he can out of the Hoffer Family Foundation, but also relies on the Animal Welfare League of Charlotte County to help with some expenses. The generosity of fellow pet lovers has helped him take care of and successfully adopt out 471 German Shepherds to date just in Florida and another 50 in New Jersey.

Erik is involved with a number of local organizations, including:

Animal Welfare League of Charlotte County
Peace River Dog Fanciers, Inc
The Back Pack Kidz
Harry Chapin Food Bank

How can we help?

Like many rescue organizations, Erik appreciates the generosity of fellow animal lovers. He is always willing to collect Martingale collars, leashes and Costco Salmon and Sweet Potatoes dog food. Other food brands are appreciated as well and help wean dogs off their current food to the Costco brand Erik feeds his rescue dogs.

If you would like to donate money, please send your check made payable to the ANIMAL WELFARE LEAGUE, 3519 Drance Street Port Charlotte FL 33980.

Please write in on the memo line: donation for German Shepherd Rescue so the funds can be correctly allocated.

Rescue Spotlight

german shepherd rescue jake
Jake, who is nine years old, needs a forever home. Jake will be one of the pets included in Pet Day this Saturday at Fifth Third Gateway Shoppes in Naples from 10 am to 1pm.

Click here to meet Jake

Click Here for info on Saturday’s event
(August 9th 2014)

Tracking SW Florida Fox News

Fox News – North Naples FD employee trains dogs to help locate missing elderly

Michelle Delaney interviews with Fox News on how her trained Search and Rescue (SaR) dogs help save lives in SW Florida. Click here to watch the full video on Fox4News.

NORTH NAPLES, Fla.- Imagine your loved one is lost, vanished without a trace. Fears are high and time is of the essence. It is a harsh reality for many families in Southwest Florida. The North Naples Fire Department is using man’s best friend to reunite them.

“We have so many nursing homes that people just wander out and if somebody wanders out hopefully we can get a jump on that and bring them home quickly,” Lt. Michelle Delaney said.

With missing and endangered elderly cases reported in our area nearly every day, North Naples Fire engineer and acting Lieutenant Michelle Delaney decided to turn her hobby in to a life saving skill.

“Since I’m with the search and rescue department and with as much training as we’ve done with the tracking, it all just fit hand in hand. So people aren’t standing out on a street corner wondering where their loved ones are,” Lt. Delaney said.

Lt. Delaney said in a matter of minutes, her family of German Shepard’s can locate the lost and it all starts with a simple scent.
As you step you’ve got thousands of skin rafts that are falling off and it’s falling on to the ground getting stuck in the shrubs,” Lt. Delaney said.

“If we were out here on feet, we would have to do a grid search and we’d still be walking to find the location of the person. So in essence she found you in three minutes, we would still be by the road developing a plan,” Delaney said.

Lt. Delaney said the dogs have gone through years of training and different certifications. She said their services can be vital to Southwest Florida.

“It is a great feeling especially if we can bring someone home and it’s part of our job so it puts one more tool in our tool belt to help the community,” Lt. Delaney said.