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German Shepherd Information

Jan 30, 2008
The German Shepherd dog is one of the most beloved and honored dogs in the world. Though this breed is classified by the American Kennel Club (AKC) in the herding group and began as a herding dog, German Shepherds perform many other jobs today. Because of their inherent courage, work ethic, intelligence, loyalty and overall trainability, German Shepherd dogs are commonly used in police work, as escorts for the blind, and as security for many families and businesses. There is no better protector than a German Shepherd.

German Shepherds are native to Germany. The first of the breed was a sheep-herding dog. This dog, given the name Horand von Grafath, became the first German Shepherd registered in the German Shepherd Dog Club of Germany in 1899. The breed was registered with the AKC in 1911.

German Shepherd breeders are common in North America due to the high demand not only for purebred German Shepherds, but for Shepherds with specific training. A German Shepherd breeder may specialize in training this breed for the visually impaired, for the police, and for use in tracking and protection. The Germans have a special training program for Shepherds to become "Schutzhunds," or protection dogs.

There are a few precautions any potential German Shepherd buyer should take before making a purchase of a purebred German Shepherd dog. First, know what you are looking for. Second, know what purpose you plan to utilize the German Shepherd for. Third, know what it takes to care for a German Shepherd. Fourth, know where to find a reputable breeder.

Purebred German Shepherds have specific characteristics. They should also have registration papers or some form of pedigree, preferably from the American Kennel Club. Because German Shepherds are trained in various tasks and graduate from training programs, their lineage should reflect the rankings and accomplishments of their parents. The German Shepherd breeder should have his or her own kennel, and dogs should receive daily contact, grooming, socializing and training.

Unfortunately, a German Shepherd breeder may attempt to sell faulty German Shepherds. Make sure you obtain a complete copy of your German Shepherd's medical records including health history, immunization records, results of blood tests, and any other relevant health information. This breed is prone to hip problems and a reputable German Shepherd breeder will give you some form of warranty or guarantee that your German Shepherd has been evaluated.

Now that you know basic German Shepherd traits and medical conditions, how to care for your Shepherd, what to look for in a German Shepherd breeder, and what purpose you will utilize your Shepherd for, it is time to find the perfect German Shepherd. Though many buyers want a purebred puppy, buying a purebred adult dog can be a good alternative. Adults are already trained, housebroken and socialized. Also, there are many adult German Shepherds who are far less likely to find homes than the adorable puppies sold by breeders.

German Shepherd rescue centers save Shepherds from abusive, neglectful or uncaring environments. There are bad breeders who try to sell fake dogs and there are even worse breeders who sell purebred, but often unhealthy, dogs out of puppy mills. Puppy mills are kennels where dogs are housed in small cages, constantly bred and provided with little to no socialization. Rescue centers re-socialize the dogs and foster or adopt them out to loving homes. Consider a rescued German Shepherd as an alternative when buying your dog.
About the Author
Jan Ryan has owned two German shepherds, Gemini and Heinrich, both bought from a reputable German Shepherd breeder. It is important to know how to locate reputable German Shepherd breeders. This article contains German Shepherd information and gives tips on how to find a good German Shepherd breeder.
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