German Shepherd dog type: German Show Bloodlines dog
About German Shepherd Dog Types
By Yuliya Matvyeyeva
How has a breed that is rather young become the most popular breed in the world? It wasn’t by chance. The answer lies in its versatility, intelligence, and devotion. The German Shepherd Dog possesses wonderful working abilities that are directly related to the special traits of this breed, such as solid nerves, easygoing behavior, eagerness to please, strong guardian instinct, and loyalty. This provides a foundation for use of the German Shepherd Dog as a watchdog, protection dog, and as a companion. Due to the high popularity of the breed, several distinct German Shepherd dog types have emerged. If you are looking for a German Shepherd puppy, you need to be aware that just because someone bred two German Shepherds, it does not necessarily mean that the offspring will have all of the wonderful characteristics that the breed is famous for. This article is intended to give you an overview of several of the most common types of GSD.
Germans take great pride in their breed. It is a national treasure. Naturally, they make sure that the dogs they breed are the best. In Germany, there are very strict rules when it comes to breeding German Shepherds. First of all, ALL breeding stock is required to pass hip certification. Sound temperament is critical too. The German Shepherd Dog is a WORKING breed and in Germany every dog must prove that it is worthy to pass its genes on to future generations. This is to say that, prior to breeding, each dog must have at least a Schutzhund I title (or its equivalent), which is quite a challenge to achieve. Also, every dog must pass an endurance test (AD), which consists of running approximately 12 miles. All of this ensures that only the best and healthiest population is used for breeding. But even within Germany, the breed has split into two types: German Working Bloodlines and German Show Bloodlines.

German Shepherd type: German working bloodlines example
This German Shepherd dog type is MAINLY bred for its working ability. If you are looking for a dog that will search for drugs or contraband, or will be part of a search and rescue team, you should look for a German Shepherd that comes from working lines. These dogs make great family companions too, but some of them require an experienced handler and trainer. Even though they have a lot of drive and a great desire to work, good working line German Shepherds are not “hyper”. Successful working dogs have a stable temperament with a great disposition and know how to relax. They can also perform miracles in obedience.

Falk von den Wolfen (9th place BSP)

German Shepherd type: German show bloodlines example
If you want a strikingly beautiful dog, a head turner - these lines might be for you. A good show line German Shepherd Dog is beauty itself, but its beauty is functional and not abstract. Show line German Shepherds tend to be larger than Working line dogs and brighter in color. Also, they usually have a softer and more agreeable temperament. They too, however, must have a Schutzhund title in order to be bred, and pass a courage test at each National show where they compete - in accordance with SV rules. They make exceptional family companions and protectors. German show line German Shepherds are in no way couch potatoes; they need exercise, training, and lots of social interaction.

VA1 (World Champion) 2004-2005 Larus von Batu

Czech working bloodlines example - Czech SchH3 Champion 2001
Other European Working Bloodlines are similar to the German Working Bloodlines. The difference might be in structure - sometimes favorable, sometimes not. German Working Bloodline breeders try to follow the German Shepherd breed standard, and often succeed, whereas most other European Working Bloodline breeders still have some work to do. Often it is a matter of personal preference. As far as working ability, there are outstanding working German Shepherd Dogs among the other European lines, and they have a very dedicated following. Some examples of such lines are: Czech or Slovak working lines, Belgium working lines, etc.

Conan Plamen ( Czech Working Bloodlines )

German Shepherd dog type: American show bloodlines exampleAmerican Bloodlines are practically a different breed of dog, as breeders who promote this type do not follow the international German Shepherd breed standard. The German Shepherds of this type usually have thinner bones, narrower heads, exaggerated angulation, and softer ears and pasterns. In addition, there are several health concerns that seem to be more common among these dogs, such as bloat, allergies, and excessive shedding. There is another serious issue to consider when looking at this type of dog - there is no hip certification required by the main breed registries in the United States. There are no temperament tests required either. If you do decide to get an American line German Shepherd, be certain that not only its parents, but all ancestors for at least four generations have healthy OFA certified hips and that you can at least verify the temperament of the parents.

American Type GSD

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