German Shepherds: Everything to know about All-Time Favorite Breed

German Shepherds are one of the most popular breeds in the world. Whether you want a friend to play with or an obedient companion, German Shepherds can be found anywhere from being a family pet to working as police dogs and assistance animals.  They are very well suited for guard dogs

The traits that make them such beloved pets also make them great at their jobs – they’re intelligent, loyal, and devoted companions who work hard for their human partners.

But what makes these dogs so unique?

In this blog post, we’ll cover a brief history, types, and much more behind this amazing breed and some of its defining characteristics!

German Shepherd Information Guide: The Origins, Breed, Traits, and Types

German Shepherds History: The Origins

The 19th Century 

 The German Shepherds breed is known for their role as guard dogs and service dogs. For hundreds of years, they have been companions to humans. Back in 1899, German Shepherds were known as farm dogs. 

The initial breeding is credited to Captain Max von Stephanitz. Acclaimed as the father of the German Shepherd breed, he always admired the high trait qualities of this dog. 

He wanted to produce a high-class working dog breed that would play a vital role in the police and military too. He proposed the idea to the German government after judging the success of dogs on the basis of shows and trials. 

Soon in the early ’90s the German Shepherd breed started to gain a name for itself. Soon became a popular dog breed in Germany. The news reached the American and British soldiers too. Impressed by the German Shepherd information,  they were included in both world wars and hence found a strong footing on American land. 

The 20th Century

By the beginning of the 20th century, SV was the largest German Shepherd Breed Club in the world! 

Under the leadership of Max von Stephanitz, the selling of the German Shepherd puppies was stopped. He introduced the Koerung where the puppies were thoroughly examined and recommended for breeding. This was the ultimate step to stop indiscriminate breeding. 

Results? A top-notch pure breed of German Shepherds was assured. 

German Shepherds Breed Overview

Smart and easy to train dogs, the German Shepherd is an active breed. They always are keen to do something or otherwise, you can expect them to become mischievous. 

To avoid aggressive behavior, the German Shepherd breed is trained at a young age. It helps them to socialize and improves obedience training as well. German Shepherds are well-proportioned dogs. 

Take a look down below at the German Shepherd breed overview. 


  • Herding dog / Guard dog 

Weight Range:

  • Male: 75-95 lbs. 
  • Female: 75-95 lbs.

Height at Withers:

  • Male: 25 in.
  • Female: 23 in.


  • Length: Medium
  • Characteristics: Double coat
  • Colors: Most colors, other than white, are permissible
  • Grooming Needs: Moderate

Life Expectancy:

  • 7-10 years

German Shepherds Characteristics and Traits:  The Basis of Popularity

No doubt, German Shepherds are known to be a quality breed. They are highly intelligent and best for herding sheep and patrolling the borders. 

However, there are certain characteristics and traits that make this breed highly popular. 

Their head is broad and shapes into a beautiful muzzle. One main quality is their large and erect ears. They are known for their well-balanced and muscular body while their tail is bushy. But what else is there? 

Take a look below at the rates per characteristic. 

Family Life

  • Lovey-dovey 

Rate: 5/5

German Shepherd’s history suggests that they are likely to be good with family members and other familiar people. Most breeds might be aloof to others but to their owners. 

  • Good with Children

Rate: 5/5

German Shepherds have a high level of tolerance with kids. Overall they are popular for being a family-friendly natured dog. 

  • Social Dogs

Rate: 3/5

German Shepherds are guard dogs; they can well lead the other dog breeds. However, some German Shepherd breeds are more innate while some are more likely to get along with other dogs in public. 

Social Quality 

  • Everyone is their Best Friend / Reserved

Rate: 3/5 

According to German Shepherd information, they are less welcoming towards strangers. They are reserved and cautious around unfamiliar faces and always on high alert. But with owners, they are warm and fuzzy. 

  • Playfulness 

Rate: 4/5

German Shepherds are social animals. They behave best when engaged with exercises and games. Physical activities help them to relax and have fun. 

  • Protective Nature

Rate: 5/5

German Shepherd breed has high alert tendencies around strangers. They are quick to act to any potential threat whether it’s a mailman or a chipmunk. But they do warm up to family friends. 

  • Adaptability 

Rate: 5/5

This dog breed adapts to the living situation, weather, and daily schedule more quickly as compared to other medium dog breeds. 


  • Eager to please

Rate: 5/5

German Shepherds are willing to undergo training. They are most eager to impress their proud owners with quality activities, even learning dog tricks

  • Energy

Rate: 5/5 

German Shepherds require a high amount of exercise as compared to other dog breeds. They can spend time running, jumping, or playing all day long. 

  • Barking 

Rate: 3/5

The German Shepherd breed is not overly vocal. They are a smart dog breed but also know when to express themselves by barking or howling. 

  • Mental Stimulation 

Rate: 5/5 

Since they were initially known as herding dog dogs and later known as guard dogs, the German Shepherd breed is highly intelligent. They learn the dog commands quickly and do not require much brain exercise either.

4 Popular German Shepherd Types you can Pick From!

Did You Know?

The German Shepherd breed is also known as the Alsatian in Great Britain and parts of Europe

German Shepherd has some other popular names too like Berger Allemand, Deutscher and Schäferhund. The most commonly known German Shepherd types are recognized on the basis of medium and long hair varieties. 

The colour coat varies in all German Shepherd types but nonetheless, they are still loved by their owners in the most affectionate ways. 

1. Saddle Coat German Shepherd Dog

This one is the most common German Shepherd breed that we know of. Their two distinctive colours are the prominent markings which are how they got their name. 

The saddle part on the back of the German Shepherd is black. It resembles the saddle on the horse. The underlying side of the German Shepherd is usually tan or red. Also, a saddle coat German Shepherd dogs has a black muzzle along with its tail.

2. Black German Shepherd Dog

As the name suggests, the solid colour coat for this GSD is black, hence the name. A Black German Shepherd Dog may also have powder blue eyes (which is almost a rare trait) making it a unique combination in a dog breed besides the Huskies

German Shepherd breed has just a few colour variations which are why you will not find as many Black GSD as a Saddle Coat GSD. 

3. Panda German Shepherd Dog

Another rare type of GSD is known as the Panda German Shepherd. Because of their striking and common appearance they can be easily confused with other dog breeds. 

A Panda GSD has a colour mutation but knows that they are not a mixed breed dog. This mutation is only found in the US. The white coat covers the abdomen and legs but the black or tan coat covers the other parts. So it gives it a Panda like appearance. 

4. Sable German Shepherd Dog

Officially the Sable GSD breed is known as “agouti”. The main trait lies in the multicoloured hair pattern on their bodies which makes this German Shepherd breed most unique. 

The colour pattern may vary from tan, grey, black or gold. At a young age, the colour pattern is tan but later onwards it becomes darker. 

Choose your Pick!

I can bet you didn’t know much about this proud guard dog breed! German Shepherd information is widely available over the internet. But a personal first-hand experience speaks louder than any other information. 

If you are looking to adopt a GSD, you are most likely to find a Saddle Coat German Shepherd in your locality. If not, then do not forget to share your Shepherd’s pictures with us! 

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Summra is a dog enthusiast fully committed to helping train fellow dog owners. She enlightens them to solve their furry friend’s behavioral issues and to focus on the dog’s needs in optimistic ways.