Christel immigrated to South Africa at the age of sixteen. Her association with German Shepherd Dogs started when she bought her first dog in 1976. She attended obedience classes at a local dog school and a passion for the breed developed. She registered her German Shepherd Dog breeding kennel, Kazandi, in 1984. It is situated in Centurion, Gauteng, not far and central to Johannesburg, Midrand, and Pretoria.
With hard work and dedication, she and her husband Rudi Zimmermann (both life members of the GSDF of SA) developed the kennel into one of the best kennels in the country. Rudi did a stint as National Administrator of the GSDF of SA; qualified as a breed judge, became a senior breed judge and later a breed surveyor and received a president’s award for services rendered to the German Shepherd Dog Federation of SA.
They received the Double Diamond Breeder’s Medal in 2020. The kennel achieved Top 20 Show Kennel status for five years in a row (2016 - 2020). Many outstanding dogs emanated from Kazandi of which a number were graded VA(SA) They have also imported stud dogs and brood bitches from Germany in order to broaden the diversity of bloodlines in their kennel. Kazandi won the Kennel Group competition in 2017, achieving the highest degree of difficulty, i.e.: excellent uniformity and quality with dogs from 5 different sires and 5 different dams; 2 VA(SA) females, the Sieger of the young dog (12 to 18 month of age) class and the Vice-Siegerin of the youth bitches (18 to 24 month of age) and the Youth Sieger of the 18 to 24 months class.
Kazandi kennels’ objective is to breed dogs that will serve as ambassadors for the breed; healthy and vibrant dogs, that bring joy to their owners.