GSD (German Shepherd Dog) Breed

german shepherd dog complete breed profile

German Shepherds are highly intelligent and loyal dogs. Their athletic body makes them active and agile. GSD breed was originated in Germany. This breed was previously known as Alsatian Wolf Dog, but after the First World War, its name was changed to German Shepherds. GSD Breed is a relatively modern breed among all dogs. This breed is marked by a willingness to learn and train. They are very inquisitive dogs which makes them a suitable choice for guard dogs, service dogs, and rescue dogs for military missions.

As I mentioned earlier, this breed is popular for its activeness and intelligence. Researches showed that GSD Breed is able to learn various tasks easily as compared to other dog breeds. That’s why German Shepherds were bred specifically for adroitness and intelligence. Mostly the dogs become familiarize when someone spends some time with them, but this is not the case with the German Shepherds. They are not inclined to become immediate friends with a stranger. German Shepherds are not calm dogs like Goldendoodles. They alert their owners when someone steps into the house, so they are well known for their protectiveness over family members. Before going into the detail of GSD Breed, Let’s have a look at a brief overview of this breed.

Characteristics of German Shepherd Breed:

PlayfulnessHigh
Affection LevelHigh
Intelligence LevelHigh
FriendlinessHigh
TrainabilityHigh
Exercise LoverHigh
Kid FriendlyHigh
Pet FriendlyLow
Energy LevelMedium
Tendency to BarkHigh
Amount of SheddingHigh
german shepherd dog sitting

Breed History:

In the past, people used to breed dogs for the purpose of sustaining their traits. In Germany, this was also practiced by local community members. They were trying to develop a breed that fulfilled all the criteria of herding sheep flock from predators. At that time dogs were selected on the basis of intelligence, speed, strength, and keenness to smell. At last, they succeeded in getting a breed that was able to do such things, but that differed significantly both in appearance and ability.

To look out for these differences, a society was established in Germany with the name Phylax Society in 1891. The purpose of this society was to establish an optimal developmental plan for breeds in Germany. After three years of work, this society was banded due to internal conflicts. Because some people believed dogs should be bred for working purposes only while others believed dogs should be bred for appearance as well. So, this conflict remains unsolved.

When Germany step ahead in industrialization, the number of predators declined, rendering sheepdogs unnecessary. It was actually the turning point because the awareness of sheepdogs began to rise. A man whose name was Max Von Stephanitz believed that dogs should be bred for working purposes only. He was a student of Berlin Veterinary College and he was also an ex-member of the Phylax Society. In 1899 Max Von attended a dog show where he saw a dog whose name was Hektor Linksrhein. This dog fulfilled all the criteria which Max von thought should be present in a working dog. He immediately bought that dog and changed his name to Horand von Grafrath. Horand was declared as the first German shepherd dog of the world.

German shepherd history (gsd)

Training and Care of GSD Breed:

German Shepherds have a double coat. They have medium to large size hairy coat which is mostly rough in texture. Their coat should be brushed every few days. The shedding rate of their coat is very high but we can limit this by using routinely grooming tips. So if you have a German Shepherd, be prepared to have a lot of hair on your clothing medium and this hair needs to be cleaned out by using a vacuum cleaner.

However, their high shedding hair coat has one advantage, that this coat prevents them from dirt and debris. So they don’t need to bathe too much but you should bathe your GSD once a month. Because too much bathing results in loss of essential oils secreted by the hair.

Dental hygiene is also very much important for your German Shepherd. For this purpose, you should have to wash your teeth at least once a week. They have very powerful jaws and this breed likes to chew, so make sure of the availability of chewing toys for your dog.

In the same way, the nails need to be trim regularly because it provides the smooth walk for your dog.

Training of GSD Breed:

Training the German Shepherds is quite easy because they are always keen to train and learn things. Because they sometimes become aggressive if not properly trained. Familiarization of dogs socially is very much important because if you don’t take your dog outside in your community, it will lose its activeness. And when your dog will meet someone new it will become aggressive. So, socialization is also necessary to make sure that your GSD doesn’t become scared when meeting new people or other animals.

When you noticed that your German Shepherd developed some strange behaviors like barking, digging or chewing, etc then be alert because these are the indications that your dog is tiresome or bore. Now, what is the reason behind this? “Regular exercise”! yeah it’s the exercise or in other words the play activities. A few-minute walk is not enough for your German shepherd. GSD Breed is very active and smart. Due to the high energy level of this breed, plenty of exercises is required. If you are a jogger then a German Shepherd can be a good running companion.

In short, like your other family members, a German Shepherd also needs attention, care, and grooming otherwise you will have to face consequences.

german shepherd gsd training jump

Common Health Problems:

The following Problems in GSD Breed need to be noticed. These are:

Hip Dysplaisa:

The orthopedic foundation of animals reported this problem as the most common problem in the German shepherd breed. This problem occurs during embryonic development. In a normal case, the head of the femur (ball) and the cavity of a pelvic bone called acetabulum grow uniformly. But in Hip Dysplasia, this uniform growth doesn’t occur resulting in a deformed hip. The pain of this problem occurs later in life. Hip Dysplasia leads to arthritis or other joint problems.

Research conducted by the University of Zurich found that 45% of German Shepherds that work either as service dogs or police dogs were most likely affected with Hip dysplasia and degenerative spinal stenosis.

The Orthopedic Foundation of Animals said: The percentage of infected German Shepherds with Hip Dysplasia is 19.1%

Degenerative Myelopathy:

Degenerative Myelopathy is abbreviated as DM. This is a neurological disorder affecting the white matter of the spinal cord. This part of the spinal cord starts to degenerate resulting in weakness of the hind limbs and this problem leads to paralysis of the hind limbs. DNA saliva test is now available to check out this problem. So if you are going to adopt or buy a GSD Breed, make sure that your dog has gone through this test.

Gastric Dilation Volvulus:

GDV is an alarming situation. This problem is also called Bloating. When an excess gas or food filled in the stomach, it expands and rotates thus cutting off the blood supply to the stomach. It will lead to necrosis of stomach tissue. This problem also disturbs the normal functioning of major organs like the lungs and heart causing tachycardia.

Diet and Nutrition:

The Diet of a German Shepherd depends upon many factors like age, size, activity level, etc. Normally German Shepherds require two meals a day of dry dog food. As they are prone to Gastric Dilation Volvulus or other gastric torsions, so avoid a large meal.

Also must check out the daily routine care like weight check because obesity in a dog causes a decrease in life span. Visit every month to a veterinarian to get a diet schedule for your dog.

Conclusions:

Pros:

  • Easy to train
  • Very Eager to learn and train
  • Friendly and Loyal dogs
  • Best for guard dogs

Cons:

  • High Shedding Rate of Coat
  • Not much pet friendly like Goldendoodles
  • Need Definite Training
  • Need proper diet

Adopt or Buy a German Shepherd Breed:

Before buying any dog breed make sure that either they have done proper screening tests on the breed or not. First of all check in your local animal shelter or rescue group to see if there is a German shepherd available for you. Otherwise, the best sources to adopt or buy GSD Breed are

Other Breeds to Consider:

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