Confident, courageous, intelligent and gentle, it’s no wonder German Shepherds are considered the second most popular dog breed in America. These large dogs are unswervingly loyal and protective of their people, but are wary of strangers. Originally bred to have a strong work ethic, German Shepherds have a long history as working dogs assisting police and militaries around the world. But the average owner doesn’t have to be on the front line to keep a German Shepherd happy. Their calm demeanor makes these dogs great companions for active owners who plan to spend hours at the dog park or an afternoon on the trail together.
One of the most famous breeds today, German Shepherds are celebrated for their impressive balance of strength and grace. Weighing 50-90 pounds, these large dogs have an unmistakable appearance with an alert yet kind expression characterized by pricked ears and dark, almond-shaped eyes. According to the American Kennel Club, German Shepherds sport what’s known as a double coat: Their coarse outer coat works with a dense, soft undercoat to make the dog thrive in almost any climate. But all that hair means German Shepherds are prone to shedding and should be brushed several times a week during the spring and fall to keep your dog – and your home – looking their best.
German shepherds are most often a mix of black and tan, but it’s not impossible to see other variations such as all black, black with red, sable and even the rare white German shepherd, the AKC says.
With their bold, intelligent and gentle demeanor, it’s no wonder the German Shepherd is so popular. This versatile working dog is eager to please and a quick learner. Although they can be dominant dogs, German Shepherds that have been consistently trained and obeyed will make loyal companions for life.
Although German Shepherds were bred to work—and are eager for tasks to complete—they make great family dogs if owners can devote time to rigorous obedience training and an hour or more a day of vigorous exercise. This breed is not one to lounge around on the couch and needs regular activity to be the happiest.
In the UK, the People’s Dispensary for Sick Animals (PDSA) recommends two hours of exercise a day. This might mean long walks or runs, or signing them up for agility training competitions to channel their herding instincts. Just don’t judge them by their serious appearance – German Shepherds are playful dogs who love to spend lots of quality time with their owners. In reality, German Shepherds are Velcro dogs, rarely letting their owners out of their sight. For this reason, these dogs should not be left alone for too long, as their separation anxiety can become destructive if left alone for long periods of time.
As with any breed, it is important to properly socialize your German Shepherd from a young age. The German shepherd puppy price is also less than a trained dog. A well-groomed German shepherd will be patient and gentle, the AKC says. Although German Shepherds are not outright aggressive, they are very protective of their people by nature. Their guarding tendencies make them natural guard dogs that will protect their territory and alert you to intruders. German shepherds are known to be gentle with children and other pets (even cats!), especially when introduced as a puppy — although it’s important to teach children how to properly interact with dogs, says the German Shepherd Club of America. Tail pulling or painful ear pinching should always be discouraged, even if your puppy seems to tolerate it.
Although they may have originally been bred for hard work for long hours—in the trenches on the front lines or sniffing out contraband on a K-9 unit—today, the German Shepherd is as much a family dog as it is a tough one. worker. While these dogs can adapt to a variety of living situations, their high energy and large size make them better suited to a home with a physically fenced yard. German Shepherds can do well in apartments if they have enough daily exercise. These loving dogs will do well in households with other pets – if properly trained and introduced – but prefer to be the only dog in the household.
German Shepherds are extremely loyal to their people and will do anything for the ones they love. But their size, energy and strength can be too dog-like for some people. “People want a protection dog, so they go out and get a German Shepherd,” says Brian Kilcommons, founder of The Great Pets Resort, a boutique training facility in Connecticut. “Yes, they are protective, but if you look closely at the German Shepherd, they are also very specific…They like order. You need a high level of control and training for a well-behaved German Shepherd. He was bought for protection, when improperly trained he can and often is it becomes a legal and financial liability.” If you can’t devote time to obedience training, get out from the house at least for an hour a day. If you often need to leave your dog home alone for hours at a time, this breed may not be the best choice for you. You can read about how much is a german shepherd puppy worth.
A German Shepherd will be happiest with an active owner who is looking for a constant companion who enjoys spending time outdoors (they make great companions!). It’s important to consider your lifestyle before committing to any dog, but it may be wise to talk to a German Shepherd breeder or rescue group about expectations to make it sure that the breed is good for your lifestyle.