German shepherds are one of the most preferred dog breeds in the United States of America.
They are strong and attractive in appearance.
Known for their smartness and loyalty, military services opt for German shepherds for investigations purposes.
1. Quick Facts:
Average Weight: 55 pounds-90 pounds (male breed) 45 pounds-82 pounds (female breed)
Average Height: 17-22 inches
Life Expectancy: 10-12 years
Dog Group: Working dog
Dog Ranking: 2nd
Other Names: Alsatian, Alsatian wolf dog, GSD, GS dog, Deutscher Schaferhund
Colors: Black; black and red; black and brown; black and silver; black, white and brown, dark blue and brown, brown, black and silver; black and silver; white; white, black and brown; etc.
2. At A Glance:
- Size (4/5)
A German shepherd attains its full size between 1-2 years of age.
A fully developed German shepherd Dog would be 80-90 pounds in weight and 17-22 inches in height.
They are fluffy and strong in nature.
- Affection Level (5/5)
German shepherds are generally very affectionate with the family it is brought into.
It is usually believed that they attach themselves the most to the person who brings them into the family.
Another belief about them is that they personally attach themselves to the member who feeds them, generally the mother in the family.
They tend to keep roaming around that person.
- Apartment-Friendly (3/5)
This dog breed is not very comfortable with living in apartments as they are active dogs and require more open space as compared to a concrete apartment.
Also, owning an apartment on a higher floor would increase danger as German shepherds are observed to be afraid of heights.
There are more suited to big open houses with muddy gardens and fencings.
They love being bathed in the open, under the sun.
- Cold Weather Tolerability (4/5)
Having a well-coated fur thick-skinned makes it easy for German shepherds to adapt to cold-weather climate.
As they are believed to be from Germany, the cold European climate makes them feel warm enough for the heavy skin.
- Hot Weather Tolerability (3/5)
A German shepherd dog is not very comfortable living in hot weather conditions.
But many German shepherds do adapt to equatorial climates.
Although this can lead to excessive shedding of hair and skin allergies, proper care and nourishment can prevent it.
- Barking Tendencies (4/5)
Known to be the military dog, German shepherds tend to bark at strangers and suspicious individuals.
They are best known for their guarding abilities.
- Cat-Friendly (2/5)
Cats and dogs have always shown an unfriendly attitude towards each other.
German shepherd dogs tend to bark and chase cats.
- Dog-Friendly (2/5)
German shepherds are moody wolf dogs.
They like their own space and do not believe in interactions with other dogs.
- Exercise Needs (5/5)
Healthy and fully developed growth of this dog requires plenty of outdoor exercises.
This dog breed loves playing with balls and Frisbee.
Also, they enjoy the grass feel and need at least 1 hour of exercising daily.
- Grooming Needs (4/5)
The dog breed requires regular grooming for an infection-free growth.
They shed a lot of hair and require regular brushing.
Also, depending on the weather conditions GSDs need to be given bath preferably with warm clean water.
- Playfulness (5/5)
The Strong, muscular and heavy skinned body naturally makes a German shepherd playful and active.
They love playing in water, grass, sand, etc.
- Trainability (5/5)
German shepherds have quick learning intelligence. They can be easily trained if done in the right manner.
Many individuals train their German shepherds at home as well.
This saves up training expenditure and the dog learn willingly from their owners.
This is because many trainers that are hired show harsh behavior towards the dog because the dog shows a furious nature.
Although some of them get aggressive while to be trained, most of them enjoy this activity.
- Intelligence (5/5)
Rin Tin Tin, the famous German shepherd dog who has featured in more than
25 Hollywood movies have shown how intelligent this breed type can be.
They can easily find things by smelling the nature of it.
They have saved many lives this way in the past and have also helped cops find criminals.
Their alertness responds quickly to stimulation.
- Mouthiness (5/5)
German shepherds are aggressive working dogs and have a higher mouthiness.
They tend to bite the family members in a friendly way.
Also, they love chewing and licking.
When it comes to other animals,
German shepherds grab to eat them which makes it necessary to keep an eye on the dog.
- Price group (4/5)
- Adoption Price: $350-$375
- Puppy Price: $300-$330
- Senior Price: $150-$200
The price rate of a German shepherd in the United States of America is quite high owing to the growing demand in the towns.
3. About German Shepherds:
Owning a German shepherd post the world –wars were regarded as a sign of prestige which continues till date.
Generally seen in shady colors like brown, black and a few mixes, they are also available in pure white fur with a few shades of grey and silver.
German shepherds are highly demanded by police departments, military troops, and other defense-related organizations for security reasons.
This dog breed is considered one of the most attentive, smart, alert and loyal dogs amongst all others.
They easily recognize faces and jump on individuals showing love and affection.
- PUPPY LIFE:
This is the most crucial and loving phase over the entire life span of a German shepherd dog.
As puppies, they spend most of their time sleeping and the rest by getting to understand things around them.
The puppies are born about 1-2 pounds in weight and around 5 to 8 inches in height.
Little puppy, when brought home would not know anything and would probably urinate and excrete anywhere around the house.
Also, special care is to be taken of a German shepherd puppy because they are highly prone to infections and diseases like loose-motions.
It is believed that German shepherd puppies have a higher level of intellectual understanding as compared to other dog breeds.
This can be one of the factors why as adults they are preferred in military services for important roles.
- ADULT LIFE:
A fully grown German shepherd dog breed weighs around 70-90 kilograms
And 17-22 inches in height.
As adults, they are extremely playful dogs and spend most of their time in physical activities.
They sleep lesser as compared to their early months along with which they develop a sharp mind.
Also, the mating of a German shepherd as an adult is important for the hormonal balance of the dog.
Most of the owners prefer mating their GSD after the age of 2 years.
4. Where German Shepherds Came From: Germany!
The German shepherd is one of the most preferred dog breeds in the United States of America.
An American soldier found a German shepherd while returning from the war and took it away with him.
It was this time when the popularity of a German shepherd increased.
It originates from Germany and was earlier know with the title names Deutscher schaferhund and Alsatian.
Many believe it to be a mixed breed but the German shepherds are a breed of their own.
A developed fully grown German shepherds attains its maximum size at between the age of 1 to 2 years.
They are mostly fluffy and fit because of their physical playfulness.
Most of the dog trainers would believe that German shepherds are one of the easiest to train and instruct.
This makes it easy for defense troops to use them for inspection.
The dog breed German shepherd is known for a strong and muscular body.
They have in-tight body muscles that are developed for rough and all-weather activities.
Harsh and thick skin makes it necessary for the breed to be kept in a cold and dense climate.
German shepherds react to hot weather conditions that would make them furious and uncomfortable.
GSDs are of two types based on their coats:
- SINGLE COATED GERMAN SHEPHERD
- DOUBLE COATED GERMAN SHEPHERD
Single coated German shepherds, as the name speaks have a thin covered layer of fur-coated over the thick layered body of the dog.
Whereas a double-layered one would have a heavy royal coating that would make them look fat and furrier.
To maintain the shiny fluffy coat, most of the veterinarians suggest regular brushing and massaging of the dog.
8. Common Diseases:
The German Shepherds are prone to perianal fistula that leads to excessive draining and shedding of fur around the abdominal area.
This is a disease where the food pipe scientifically known as the esophagus is blocked and a limp is formed that does not allow the food to pass through in the stomach creating digestive problems.
This disease affects the joints of a ball or socket sometimes both that make it difficult for a German shepherd to live normally.
Studies have shown a great improvement by the German shepherds from this
Disease in the form of recovery but severe internal damage can take a greater toll on them.
CAUSES OF DEATHS OF GERMAN SHEPHERDS
- Neurological diseases
- Improper digestion
- Unbalanced diet
- Excessive exercises
- Fatigue disorders
- Vascular and blood disorders
- Hormonal problems
Hence it is important to provide a balanced and sufficient nutritional diet to a German shepherd with appropriate hours of physical and mental exercises.
Most from this dog breed is active and have a lot of energy consumption.
This makes it necessary to include protein and other dietary food nutrients in their meals for a healthy and fully developed German shepherd dog.
What to include in their diet?
Dogs particularly German shepherds love non-vegetarian food as it has a higher content of protein.
The following are some basic food items that should be included in their diet
- Nutritional chicken (preferably boiled)
- Eggs (boiled and cramped)
- Pure and fresh curd
- Green and fresh leafy vegetables
- Cottage cheese (raw or boiled)
- Plain cheese
- Fish (boneless)
- Plain boiled rice
NOT TO INCLUDE
- Sweets and sugar products
- Non-vegetarian items with bones
- Excessive salt
- Excessive milk
- Ice creams
- Other snacks like wafers and chips
The nutritional requirements of animals are different from those of human beings.
Therefore certain food products need to be added or eliminated from their diet.
10. Vaccination and Care:
German shepherds need to be vaccinated from time to time.
They need to be given de-worming every 3 months to protect them from allergies.
There are certain injections that need to be given.
Namely canine parvovirus, canine distemper, leptospirosis, par influenza, corona virus etc.
Unhealthy or sick dogs should not be vaccinated until prescribed by the veterinarian.
In the early weeks of a puppy’s life, it needs to be vaccinated at 6th, 8th, 12th, and 16th week respectively.
11. Monthly Expense Estimation:
In the nineties, having a German shepherd was a matter of prestige.
They were considered royal dogs and a lot of expenditure was incurred on them accordingly.
But in the current environment, a normal family finds it difficult to pet a GSD looking at the maintenance it requires.
Owing a GSD can cost an individual from 100 to 150 US Dollars per month.
12. Behavior With:
German shepherds are known for their courage and wittiness and how smartly they learn to sense danger.
Behavioral wise they are more of an aggressive dog than loving pets.
They possess a sharp memory and a whiff nose to find hidden items.
Having a German shepherd as a homely pet has different behavioral patterns as compared to the ones trained for defensive jobs.
These are a few qualities generally observed in a German shepherd dog breed
- Highly alert
- Active and playful
- Loyal and courageous
- Sharp memory
German shepherds are highly friendly with young children particularly with those belonging to their own family.
They tend to act and behave like them if living in the same space.
It is also believed that German shepherds tend to get jealous when a child in the house is given more affection.
However, it depends upon its upbringing.
German shepherds tend to be friendly dogs towards other dogs.
But at times they try to distance themselves from superior dogs.
One German shepherd was observed growling at another because its owner tried to pet the other.
This breed type is not very friendly with cats.
They begin to bark and howl on seeing cats and try to run and chase them.
On the other hand, cats too maintain distance looking at their bulgy wolfed face.
To summarize upon, the German shepherd is a lively working dog breed known especially for its strength and loyalty.
After the Labrador retriever, they rank as the 2nd most preferred dog in the United States of America.
They vary in color and features depending upon the region they are found,
Having a short life span for 10-12 years, a few also extending up to 14 years.
Found in white, black, brown and mixed colors; GSDs are attractive looking creatures originating from Europe.
They grow to their full size by the age of 2 years.
Best known for their loyalty, German shepherds are preferred by security personals and defense organizations.
They are good muscular wolf faced dogs having aggressive traits. Due to this they bark and howl at other dogs and cats.
Also, they show unfriendly behavior towards strangers and suspicious individuals.
German shepherds are known to be smart, understanding and active.
Their active behavior makes them happy and playful around young children and dog lovers.
Cold weather conditions are where they prefer to like due to their heavy and thick furry skin.
They love outdoor physical activities and are very fond of delicious meat and cottage cheese.
14. Something Fun about German Shepherds:
- RIN TIN TIN:
The popularity of the German Shepherds worldwide: Rin tin tin
In the 1930s, a dog named Rin Tin Tin gained widespread popularity as a loyal and family dog.
As the traditional story says, an American soldier found a German shepherd dog and took him along.
He trained him well and obtained the right to work a movie with the dog featuring in it.
This idea turned out to be a huge success for the dog as well as the production company.
This gained the German shepherd more Hollywood movies.
After the dog’s death, its son and grandson tried to create that same magic but failed on-screen.
Rin Tin Tin is referred to as the most popular German shepherd that ever existed.
- Own A German Shepherd Today:
And before thinking of shopping, consider adopting a little one in search of a home.
Once a German shepherd lover, always a German shepherd lover.