About Us

We are Fireside Shilohs. I liked the name "Fireside" because it brings to my mind the timeless image of a beloved dog, lying near a crackling fire enjoying his humans. 

We have been blessed with what we consider to be the best dogs on earth: Shiloh Shepherds.

We specialize in plush, large, healthy Shilohs with top notch personalities.  They fit right in our family and our small-town community.  They are often seen with us out on a run or hanging out at a game with the kids.  They are perfect companion dogs and ambassadors for the breed. 

Our goal is to enrich people's lives through these dogs, whether it be through  helping them get the new family member of their dreams, or using our dogs to reach a child in need.  We believe this is the most important thing we can do. 



(Our History)-The Search for the "Perfect Dog"

I started saving up for my first German Shepherd puppy when only ten years old.  I mowed lawns, gathered firewood, and shoveled horse manure.  I did anything a boy my age from the sticks of upstate New York could do to make money.  Then on my eleventh birthday, we got her.  Frieda was a beautiful black and red plush from German working lines, who acted more like a human than a dog.  I'm pretty sure she understood a few hundred words in English.

One time she probably saved my life.  I foolishly made my own "alternate" route to the top of Spruce Mountain.  It was January in the rugged Adirondack mountains, and was only 17 degrees.  I was 15 and bulletproof, miles away from anyone with my dog.  Life was good!  At least it was until the sky turned steel gray.  Huge flakes began to fall faster and faster.  Soon visibility of that peak so far in the distance was cut off, ...and I was hopelessly lost.  A soft blanket of snow covered my back trail.  I made large circles trying to find it, with no successSomehow I managed to keep my nerve until it got dark.

I was completely unprepared to spend a night on the mountain.  Desperate, I snuggled up with Frieda near a rock overhang to weigh my options.  Then she did the strangest thing, as if guided by an unseen force, she led me back out into the snow.  I did the smartest thing I had done all day and followed her blindly in the dark.  She lead me for what seemed like hours back to the road.  She was amazing!  I still thank God today for giving me that dog.

As an adult, I tried to find a dog that would come close to Frieda.  After college, a beautiful bride, and my first house, I picked up my second GSD.  I had to return him to his breeder. The vet wondered how he was able to function with his enormous heart murmur.  I didn't want a small, angulated show dog, so I went back to working lines hoping for a healthy dog that would not chew up my house or the neighbors' dogs!

We had German Shepherds for the next several years, that we enjoyed.  But even with lots of socialization, the drive they were bred for was hard to keep a lid on.  When it came time to think about their replacements, changes needed to be made. 
Was there another Frieda out there?  There had to be a healthy, easy to live with shepherd somewhere.  The search began.  

A friend told me about Shiloh shepherds.  I couldn't believe there was a dog that fit my description of the ideal dog.  Was there really a large, healthy, smart, stable dog with a heart of gold and a coat that felt like a pillow?  Surely, this was too good to be true! 

We researched intensely and picked up the first of our foundation dogs a month later.  She was all I hoped for.  My wife called her Amara.  It means "beloved."  We welcomed our incredibly sweet Anja later, when plans to get her brother fell through.  I looked long and hard for the right male.  At last, we found him.  He was so huge with such a puffy mane we called him Ari, which means "Lion of God."

As I think back now on the path to get here, our beginnings with Shilohs (and feel the warmth of their grand and great-grand-puppies at my feet) I am so thankful for the dogs we have been blessed with through the years and how they have enriched our children's lives. It has not been without it's difficulties, but we can gladly say we found our perfect dog in our Shiloh Shepherds. 

Web Content and Photos Copyright 2006-2018 Sam Knaus / Fireside Shiloh Shepherds.
Web and Design Copyright  2006-2018 Stephen Knaus
Photos are not to be used without permission.  All rights reserved.