German Shepherd Dog

German Shepherd Dog

While German Shepherds are most widely known as guard dogs, there is much more to them than meets the eye. This type of dog may appear to be stand-offish and uninterested, but this is the part of what makes him a great guard dog. After you gain a German Shepherd’s trust, he is extremely loyal and protective. German Shepherds are high energy dogs that were originally bred to herd animals, just as their name implies. This energy added to their above average intelligence, makes the German Shepherd dog a great worker. Today they are often seen working as police dogs, search and rescue dogs, and service dogs.

The German Shepherd dog is a medium to large dog, and is strong and muscular. Most are brown and black, although it is possible to find them in other colors. German Shepherds have a double coat of short hair, that was designed to keep them warm and dry in the snowy mountains of Europe. This hair needs to be groomed a lot, and sheds like crazy.

The History

German Shepherds are a relatively new breed of dog. In fact, they are barely over 100 years old! The existence of the German Shepherd dog is attributed to one man: Max von Stephanitz. Von Stephanitz was a captain in the German army at the turn of the century. And when he retired he dedicated his life to creating the most efficient herding dog ever seen. For hundreds of years before von Stephanitz’s time, Germans had been using dogs to herd their grazing animals. As Stephanitz began to study the different dogs used for herding. He saw some that were athletic, some that were intelligent, and others who were very capable, but none that were all of these things.

Stephanitz developed the German Shepherd with the intention that it would help farmers with grazing animals. But as the German economy became more industrialized there was less need for this. Realizing that his dogs were good watch dogs and easy to train. Stephanitz convinced a a friend in the army to begin using them as military dogs. They proved to be incredibly successful at this type of work, and played several important roles in World War I.

The American troops were very impressed with this dog. So they brought several of them home. In the United States, German Shepherds continue to do military work, but also became increasingly popular as pets. That popularity has only continued to grow, and today German Shepherds are one of the most in demand breeds in the United States.

Is a German Shepherd Right for You?

German Shepherds are big, energetic dogs that need lots of exercise and mental stimulation. They are great pets for very active people, and will love accompanying you on any type of adventure. If a German Shepherd does not get enough exercise and mental stimulation, he will likely begin to engage in undesirable behavior. Like chewing and barking. These pups also need lots of company, as they often suffer from separation anxiety. If you have a schedule that keeps you away from home for long amounts of time, than a German Shepherd dog is probably not for you.

Did You Know?

The German Shepherds nickname is “German Shedders”. Because they lose so much fur.

Germany Shepherds helped search for survivors and comfort people who were wounded during the 9/11 attacks on the United States.

Rin Tin Tin, the most famous German Shepherd dog, was found abandoned in France during World War II. He became a movie star in the Untied States.

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