Dog Breed profiles
German Shepherd Dog Breed Profile
German Shepherd Dog fact file
KC Group: Pastoral
Height: Dogs around 63cm; bitches around 58cm
Weight: About 34kg
Average lifespan: 10 years
Temperament: Intelligent and loyal, devoted to his owner
Good with children?: Seek breeder advice
Exercise requirement: Lots
Good guard dogs?: Yes
Moulting level: High
Colours: Black, ash, and iron grey with brown, light brown, or yellow markings. Black is the most common coat colour. There are white GSDs, but this coat colour isn't accepted in the show ring
Jogging partner: Yes
German Shepherds are prone to the following conditions:
- Hip dysplasia.
- Elbow dysplasia.
- Osteochondritis dissecans (OCD).
- Retinal atrophy.
- Chronic degenerative radiculomyelopathy (CDRM).
- Very alert — a great watchdog.
- Intelligent — always waiting for the next trick!
- Faithful — he will be your friend and your guardian.
- Needs a knowledgeable owner.
- Very versatile and adapts well to most living situations.
- Needs about an hour’s worth of physical exercise a day.
- Thrives on challenge — mental stimulation is just as important as physical exercise.
- Will get on with children and other pets if socialised early.
- Very intelligent and will excel at training.
- Training must be started early and carried on throughout puppyhood and especially adolescence.
- Be careful exercising your GSD pup and limit it in the first 12 months to allow healthy bone development. Once he’s reached one year old, build up exercise slowly.
- A GSD can have one of two coat types: standard and long. A standard coat only needs a vigorous brush weekly, while a long coat will require much more attention. The coat is doubled with a topcoat of hard, close-lying hair, and an undercoat with thicker, softer hair.
- When brushing your GSD, don’t forget his ‘pants’ — the fur around his bottom and hind legs.
- Good temperament.
- Highly trainable.
- Prone to some hereditary health problems.
- Requires a lot of exercise, both mental and physical.