German shepherd


 German Shepherds live side by side with humans since time immemorial. Today it is one of the most popular and recognizable dog breeds on the planet. At the dog57 dog breed registry, we'll show you what a German Shepherd looks like, talking about their origins, personality, and physical characteristics as well as their training and the most common diseases they typically suffer from. You'll find all about the German Shepherd below. Read on.

a summary

Breed Name: German Shepherd
Country of Origin: Germany
The time of the origin of the breed: the end of the nineteenth century
Weight: male 30-40 kg, 22-32 kg
Height (height at withers): males 60-65cm, female 55-60cm
Age: 10-13 years


German Shepherds can be services that perform guard or search functions and companions to families.
Loyal and compliant pets undoubtedly recognize the owner's authority. German Shepherds are among the three most intelligent dog breeds (along with the Border Collie and the Poodle).

They need human society and physical exertion. They get along well with children of all ages. They can live not only indoors, but also in a cage.

The life expectancy of a German Shepherd dog is 9-13 years, after 7 years strict health monitoring is necessary.

German Shepherd at the top of the rating. Noble faces often flashed the newspapers, on the pages, and even the pages of various television programs. The main profession of the Germans remains not the acting profession, but the protection of the order. They work for the police, border, and customs, and assist in search and rescue operations. Representatives of their owners have a lot of positive emotions.

History of the German Shepherd Breed

To trace the history of some breeds (for example, Doberman and aridal terrier, which "come" from the 19th century, or the Old English bulldog bred in 1970), it is enough to refer to official documents and eyewitness accounts. With German Shepherds, the situation is completely different. According to researchers, the beginning of the chain of direct ancestors should be sought in the depths of centuries.

Archaeological finds indicate that even in the 4th millennium BC on the territory of the modern Czech Republic, Poland and Germany lived, the skeleton of which had many features similar to the shepherds. These were the consequences of the evolution of savage individuals who chose to live near the sites of ancient tribes and became dependent on humans. It is assumed that even then some primitive selection was made, with the largest and most obedient pups selected.

The now-defunct Indian little wolf has moved away from its "free" relatives and gradually transformed into the so-called Bronze Age dogs. People's needs have changed over time. Not only farmers but shepherds also were somehow connected to a particular region. Therefore, the four-legged satellites have new functions. In the Middle Ages, Hogwarts was bred throughout Europe. This German word translates as "yard keeper", but dogs were not only involved in protecting a real estate.

Domesticated cattle need reliable protection from predators and ruthless hunters for the good of others. Given the growing number of herds and herds, it was simply impossible to cope with such a task by the forces of the shepherds. That's when the yard came to her rescue. Of course, not everyone was suitable for such work, but only the most intelligent and hardy. They began to be selected and trained specialists. And everything special is valuable, because already in the seventh century, according to the laws of the ancient Germanic tribe Aleman, a severe punishment awaited the offender by killing the shepherd.
Of course, the early Middle Ages, and later eras, looked very similar to the modern representatives of the dynasty. Fundamentally important for the so-called primitive German shepherds was not the shape of the head and the position of the tail, but the corresponding intelligence, rather large dimensions, and a "psychological portrait". The fact is that the shepherds' way of life implied long-term isolation, during the grazing season, the animals were actually in exclusive contact with their "special" person and had to not only undoubtedly obey, but also become a good companion for him .

By the eighteenth century, the situation had changed somewhat. Two regional types of German Shepherd were formed at once - a semi-longhaired Thuringian gray with a curly tail and a black or red long-haired Württemberg with semi-erect ears. They also differed in character: the first was called active animals, prone to loud and frequent barking, and the second could boast of calm and endurance. In the name of a common cause, breeders from the Central and Southwestern lands decided to unite forces.

The result of the painstaking work of enthusiasts was presented to the general public only at the end of the 19th century. At the 1882 Hanover Dog Show, Baron von Knegging brought two of his pets, males Greif and Cuirass, later interest in the new breed was fed by the owners of the kennel "Hannau", who showed the public an impressive pair - a large and built Pollux and Prima Strongly. It was thanks to them that nearly two dozen champions and winners of exhibitions of subsequent decades were born.

In 1891, the creation of the first German Shepherd Lovers' Society was announced. The Phylax organization has been around for a very short time but has managed to approve the breed standard. The next important event is the fair in the small town of Karlsruhe on the German-French border. And the event would have gone unnoticed had it not been for a prominent representative of the ancient form type to be seen. Not among the participants!

Hector von Lerkenhayn only entertained visitors by demonstrating his herding skills. By a happy coincidence, a retired military man Max von Stephanitz and his friend Arthur Mayer passed by, who devoted their free time to raising German Shepherds and immediately noticed the perfect external data of the dog, which was in no way inferior to his practical qualities . However, the owner did not want to part with his pet, negotiations took several weeks.

Having received the perfect "German", von Stephanitz included him in the first issue of the pedagogy under a new name - Horand von Grafrath. At the same time, a large-scale search for relatives in this species begins. The efforts were rewarded, and a sufficient number of worthy successors of the breed were born in the litters they received from Horan.

Most modern authentic fonts are somehow related to his son Hector von Schwaben, and his grandsons Pilot, Beowulf, and Heinz von Starkenburg. The breed of black and yellow dogs known today began with Hettel von Uckermark, son of Roland von Starkenburg. Another outstanding representative of the breed called Claudot von Boxberg became the winner of the 1925 International Exhibition and marked the beginning of new breeding lines.

Max von Stefanitz died in 1936. There is an opinion that this was indirectly facilitated by the attacks of members of the National Socialist Party, who did not want to popularize German Shepherds outside Germany and even threatened zealots with imprisonment in a concentration camp. During the Second World War, many kennels were destroyed, many animals died, and no one cared about the purity of the blood of the remaining animals.
But many valuable representatives of the breed were preserved, and in peacetime, the followers of von Stephanitz continued to work on the development of the breed. Exhibitions resumed in 1946, and five years later a new hero appeared on one of them - the hero Rolf von Osnabrucker, the founder of the modern lines of "higher education".

Back in April 1899, the German Shepherd Owners Association was created. The activities of von Stephanitz, Meyer, and other leaders were mainly aimed at maintaining the purity of blood, which is confirmed by relevant documents, encouraging distinguished breeders and developing working qualities of the breed. The organization still exists, and in May 1968 an international association was established, which today is known as the World Federation of German Shepherd Societies and units 89 national federations from 82 countries.

German shepherd figure

German Shepherds are medium in size. The growth of the male at the withers is 60-65 cm, weight 30-40 kg, less than 5 cm, and lighter by 8 kg. What is important is the relative ratio of height and mass. The dog is slightly elongated, strong and muscular, tightly built, but the spine is not coarse.


The length of the head is 40% of the dog's height at the withers. The shape is wedge-shaped, but not too elongated, moderately wide between the ears. The forehead is slightly convex. The ratio of the parts of the skull and face is 1: 1. The transition between them is expressed smoothly.


In a German shepherd, the length of the neck is approximately equal to the length of the head. Strong and muscular, highly mobile.

the eyes

Oval in shape, slightly obliquely spaced, not convex, medium in size. The color is dark.


Classic shape, without obvious dividing strip. The nasal lobe is black.

teeth and jaws

The upper and lower jaws of the German Shepherd are well developed. Teeth are strong, complete dental formula. The lips fit snugly over the jaws. The sting is in the form of scissors.


The ears of the German Shepherd are large, erect, triangular in shape, directed parallel to each other. The vessels are open forward. The ear cartilage is elastic, without wrinkles and bends.


The chest is long, wide, and deep. The backline goes down from the withers to the croup. The withers is strong, the back is wide and powerful, the croup is oblique, with an imperceptible transition to the base of the tail.

The German Shepherd's tail is relatively long, slightly curved, in the usual position it has been lowered down. Fluffy, with a longer coat on the underside of the tail.

the parties
Front legs are straight, when viewed from the front parallel. Strong and muscular. The shoulder blades and the humerus are the same lengths, connected at right angles. Hind legs are slightly separated when viewed from behind straight and parallel. The thigh and lower leg are the same length, joined at an angle of 120 degrees. Strong and muscular. The front paws are rounded, the fingers are arched. The hind legs are compact, and the toes are slightly arched.


Double, with thick, straight, coarse hair and a thick undercoat.


Black with reddish-brown, brown, yellow to light gray. Solid black or solid gray. Gray Shepherds in the area display black hoods and a Mask. German Shepherds are medium in size. The growth of the male at the withers is 60-65 cm, weight 30-40 kg, less than 5 cm, and lighter by 8 kg. What is important is the relative ratio of height and mass. The dog is slightly elongated, strong and muscular, tightly built, but the spine is not coarse.

German shepherd character

Without exception, all owners of German Shepherds call them loyal, intelligent, calm, and obedient. The key to a beautiful character is a stable psyche of the animal and proper upbringing.

The high intelligence of the Germans is not accompanied by a desire for independence and stubbornness, they easily and with pleasure master new games, teams and territories. Dogs do not like loneliness, but patiently wait for the return of the owner. For a good mood and normal well-being, they are in great need of human society, including long walks and outdoor games.

One of the important features of the German Shepherd Dog is the innate protective instincts, so strangers in the house and even during walks are treated with caution, although they do not show aggression without reason. Dedication to the owner and the family in these pets is raised to an absolute degree, they are ready to sacrifice themselves, protect the family from danger, immediately and adequately assess the degree of danger.

German Shepherds love children and enjoy playing with them. However, it is not recommended to leave children alone with the dog - at least due to the difference in size and weight. Other animals in the house are tolerated by the shepherd, friendly relations are possible if they grow up together.

Education and Training

As mentioned above, German Shepherds are intelligent and easily trained. But a great education should never be left to chance. From the first months of life in the form of interesting games and tasks, the implementation of which is accompanied by the receipt of a treat, the puppy gets an idea of ​​legal norms of behavior and important commands.

The owner must show his authority without resorting to yelling, especially physical strength. If it seems to you that there are significant deviations in the puppy's behavior that you cannot handle on your own, be sure to seek help from a dog handler.

Of course, not every German Shepherd becomes a service and guard order in special units. But even a pet needs to understand and adequately respond to basic commands: "For me!", "place!" , "impossible!", "close!" , "sat down!", "Lie down!" , "Walk!" Abort!

When the puppy's spine is strong enough, you can begin to overcome obstacles (be sure to take into account the height-to-height correspondence and the capabilities of the pet). The main point is to accustom the dog to walk on a leash, and from six months - in a muzzle. It is better to do this gradually and do not forget about the delicious encouragement of obedience.

It is important to remember that German Shepherds reach psychological maturity quite late, by the age of three. The small dog, in size fully consistent with the breed standard, is still vulnerable internally and requires the care and approval of the puppy.

Care and maintenance

Features of the coating structure allow the German Shepherd to live indoors and in the yard. In the second case, a spacious cage with an insulated booth is needed. In addition, it is desirable to protect the cage at least partially from precipitation and wind.

Immediately after the appearance of the dog in the house, designate for him your place where the bedding or mattress, the toys will lie. Near it, there should be no direct sources of heat and drafts. For the bed, it is preferable to use natural materials that do not require complex cleaning. There are enough toys that will protect furniture and shoes from sharp teeth.

The main aspect of proper maintenance for any is a balanced diet, which will ensure normal development and good health for life. The easiest way to ensure a complete diet can be premium prepared and premium food for the appropriate age group, and for adult animals - taking into account the special needs. With a "natural" diet, it is important to monitor the ratio of protein and fiber products recommended by veterinarians. And, of course, you can not feed the Shepherd with scraps from the human table, because his digestive system is not ready to work with fatty, fried, and salty foods and spices. Freshwater should be available at all times.

When contamination occurs (but not often), it is necessary to bathe the dog in warm water with special shampoo. Combing is carried out once or twice a week, during the seasonal molting period, the procedure must be carried out more often. The condition of the ears, eyes, oral cavity, and nasal passages should be monitored regularly.

It is recommended to visit a veterinarian for a preventive examination at least 2-3 times a year.

German Shepherd Dog Health and Diseases

The average life expectancy of a German Shepherd is 9-13 years.
Difficulties in the formation of the breed and forced inbreeding led to the emergence of some serious diseases. Some even show up in the puppy: growth hormone deficiency, diabetes, leukemia, eosinophilic panoblastitis (intermittent claudication), intussusception, pyoderma (purulent skin lesions).
Later, allergic reactions, hip dysplasia, intervertebral disc diseases, arthritis, corneal dystrophy, epilepsy, cataracts, pancreatic insufficiency, dysplasia of the tricuspid or mitral heart valve, aortic stenosis (narrowing of the vessel opening), inflammation may occur. Exudative pericarditis (inflammation of the outer membranes of the heart), cancer, paralysis of the hind limbs.
Under the influence of external factors, ear, and eye infections, dermatitis, volcanism, puffiness, and others can begin.

At the first signs of poor health, it is necessary to contact a veterinary clinic, where they can make the correct diagnosis and begin treatment. In addition, you must show up regularly to the doctor for a routine examination - especially for dogs during the period of active growth and for dogs over 7 years old.

How to choose a puppy

The above features of appearance and character refer to purebred German Shepherds, that is, to those whose pedigree is confirmed by official documents for several generations. Half breeds can certainly be wonderful and loyal pets, but they are still completely different dogs.

Future owners who are interested in a particular breed should look for a puppy only from proven breeders and in kennels with an excellent reputation. So you can be sure of the absence of hereditary diseases and the "distinctive" stability of the psyche, which is very important for a large pet.

Responsible breeders do not give buyers puppies that are less than 8-10 weeks old. By this time, the little German is already confidently standing on his paws, responds to his name, and is ready to start training.

If it is not purchased for breeding and participation in shows, then the main criteria for selection are its health and friendliness. Indicators of the first are considered a good appetite, cheerfulness, clean eyes, nose and ears, shiny hair, an elastic stomach without signs of bloating. A young German Shepherd should not be afraid to behave calmly with people or respond aggressively to attempts at approaching.

It is also better to “acquaintance” with the parents to get an idea of ​​​​the heredity of the future pet and to look at the conditions of the mother with the children. Cleanliness, sufficient space, high-quality food, the presence of toys, and timely vaccination are undoubtedly evidence in favor of the breeder.


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