Everything You NEED TO KNOW About The GERMAN SHEPHERD!
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Since their widespread use in WWII, the German Shepherd has been one of the most popular breeds in the US and Europe. Much of this popularity is thanks to their success as police and military working canines that excel at everything from chasing down criminals to detecting bombs to finding people in building wreckage. These high achieving canines are favorites in homes around the world that don't need all that impressive skill but just want a loyal guardian too. They are an all-around impressive breed. It’s easy to see why they have such a dedicated fan base and continue to rank so highly.
The breed popularity has remained high in various club rankings for decades. Today, the German Shepherd is ranked 2nd out of breeds by The American Kennel Club, and part of the herding group. Keep in mind that while they are an exceptional breed, they are best for experienced canine leaders that are calm and consistent with boundaries. German Shepherds need 2 or more hours of exercise each day and even more when they are young, so be prepared for that commitment. They also don't do well alone for long periods of time where their boredom can quickly turn destructive so make sure you watch my other videos on these gorgeous dogs before bringing one into your home.
Now let's get into the size of these massive dogs because make no mistake, even the smallest are still pretty big. The AKC standards dictate that male German Shepherd stand between 24"-26" at the withers, while females can be slightly smaller and range from 22"-24" tall. The KC standards dictate that male German Shepherd ideally stand at 25 inches at the withers, while females can be slightly smaller and stand at 23 inches tall. This variation between UK and US standards is common, and many breeds are somewhat larger in the US than their UK cousins but their ranges overlap here.
The AKC standards dictate that a German Shepherd weight should be proportional to their height with males weighing between 65 to 90 pounds and females weighing between 50 to 70 pounds. The KC breed standard doesn’t list a weight range, but it’s safe to say that it will be close to the AKC parameters that are proportional to the breed. They are a lean and powerfully muscled breed, so they need plenty of low-impact exercises every day along with a high quality diet. I suggest the raw diet and have a course that goes over everything you need to know when considering and transitioning to a raw diet for your canines health and longevity.
The most common health tests relate to hip and elbow dysplasia, which are quite common in German Shepherds, and many other large breed dogs. You may also want to screen for heart defects though they can be hard to test accurately for depending on the potential condition and severity. Because of their size, you'll find that any health issues they do have (and even routine vet visits) can cost more, so quality pet insurance would be a wise investment to consider as well.
Also be on the lookout for poorly bred canines if you are looking to do any kind of vigorous activity with them. There has been a trend over the last handful of years where breeders were striving for a very exaggerated drop from their shoulder to their hip and this greatly increases joint issues. The trend seems to have fallen out of fashion thank goodness, but it will still take some years before those lines are restored to a more natural conformation.
You can expect to pay $500-$3000 for a well-bred German Shepherd from a quality breeder, but you'll find them outside of that range as well, depending on your location, the pedigree, and their registration status. Keep in mind that you'll likely need to invest in training, high-quality food, pet insurance, heartworm medication, and other things that tend to be more expensive given their size. Getting your new German Shepherd will be the lowest cost, so be prepared for the ongoing expenses.
If you'd like more in-depth information about any of the things we talked about here today, keep watching the other videos on this channel to learn more. Don't forget we also have the Perfect Puppy training course, raw diet class, and Bootcamp course for adult canines. Make sure you do your research thoroughly before adding this powerful canine with a loyal heart to your home.