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differences between American and German German Shepherds

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Guest Anonymous
I am looking to purcahse a German Shepherd pup but have heard conflicting stories about American vs. German bloodlines. What are the fundamental differences between the two? Which is the prefered pet for the suburbs of a very large city?I have 30 years of dog care experience, just keep hearing conflicting reports on which is the better bloodline....help!
thanks

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Guest Anonymous
you will find varying bloodlines even [i]within[/i] american bred or german bred dogs.

what you want to look for is a bloodline that has not been developed specifically on drive and working ability. look for breeders who can explain to you that they are breeding dogs that are suitable as a companion animal for a family.

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If you're getting a GSD as a pet I wouldn't worry so much about what continent they are from. What you need to research the most is making as sure as humanely possible that you get a pup without Hip Dysplasia.

If you're going for a "Champion" bloodline do what you can to make sure both parents have certified "good" hips.

All German shepherds are extremely loyal and loving dogs. The European lines are typically of bigger build (but not always the case). Many of the American lines are geared towards show events whereas the European lines especially the Czech and Eastern Euro lines are originally geared for work in the military, police or border patrol. Many of the American show lines have those weird sloping hips (I personally don't like them) while a European working dog probably will not.

The Czech GSD can look very different than the American or some of the German lines. They are bred to work and not for things like colour. There is one Kennel in the Czech Republic responsible for the true Czech lines. During the communist days their dogs were used as border patrol. Occasionally they would lend their dogs for stud service or introduce new blood into their lines to keep them strong. Again the key here being that these dogs were all bred to work and most likely their temperment will reflect this.

You'll also fine that many breeders here have mixed their lines with Euro stock or vice versa. Whatever decision you make do your best to get a pup with a family history of good hips. Also remember that a GSD is the type of dog that really needs socialization and attention.

He will follow you to the bathroom, bark when people knock at the door, they can also be dominant or "bitey" if not obedience trained. But in the right environment I don't think you'll find a dog with more solid tempermant and intelligence than a GSD!

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This is all just my personal opinion... For a family pet you probably want to go for American Showlines or a mix of American and German Showlines. I'd pick the latter for looks because they don't tend to have (the crippled Am lines look - over-exaggerated slopping back) or (the "banana" back of the German showline dogs) the mix seems to cross eachother out - back wise. They both have a totally different look, and that is just the showline GSDs. Now, the showline GSDs are totally different in temperment(actually everything) than the working dogs. The working dogs have all the brains and physical ability.
The German workline line GSDs can be hardcore, and being working dogs, need a job. If you have a job for your dog, get a workling line GSD. I love the look of the working line GSDs best but looks aren't everything, you want a dog you can live with. If you are interested in schutzhund go with a DDR GSD or want a police dog go for a Czech GSD. Just to get an idea of where each type is at.
Research what you want, there is a huge differnce between an Am Showline GSD and German Working line GSDs to the point that I think they should be considered seperate breeds. The different types of the breed gets difficult, my best advice is go to a lot of different breeders, find out all about the different types and meet the dogs.

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Please email me if you are still looking for help/info. :D
Here is a picture of my Czech pup. (He is almost 10 months old.)

[img]http://www.cartogra.com/servlet/LinkPhoto?GUID=54301898-4da2-534c-5174-19284cda1220&size=[/img]

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Here's a picture of my rescue GSD - bloodlines, unknown. You may want to consider a rescue too. The main benefit is: WYSIWYG, what you see is what you get.
[img]http://www.gsdring.com/forums/uploads/post-42-1061510714.jpg[/img]

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Black GSD - That is one bautiful looking pup! Classic Czech GSD looks. Thats pretty much what my pups sire looked like but hehe I guess the looks didn't carry down to the pup. Right now Blitz (my pup) looks black and tan like any other GSD.

Did you have him imported? I'm interested in a first hand account of his temperment, fill me in if possible! What was he like at 4/5 Months?

Blitz is a very loving dog so far (but he's only 4 months), barks if the door bell rings, barks when he hears sirens (but not to other loud noises, weird!) and is confident around any dog until they push him around then he chickens out =) hehe. He's not very hyper for a puppy, very well behaved... Likes to chase his tail or chew things and play games but nothing too crazy.

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Actually, you can get a very nice pup suitable as a pet companion from German or other imported lines. You just have to tell the breeder what you want. Many of these dogs produce pups with drives that are too low to work but which would be quite manageable as a pet for an active owner. You may have to wait a bit for the right pup but in the end it would be worth it. The Amer Shepherds are typically weak nerved (fearful) and have many health problems because they were bred to look a certain way without just regard for the traits that make a shepherd a shepherd.

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[quote name='Black GSD'][quote name='Peng1zrule']... for a pet, i'd pick american lines, [/quote]


Why?[/quote]

I beleive that an american dog, because of the american lifestyle, doesn't have a whole lot of working drive. When I think of a dog for protection work, gaurd work, that sort of thing, I don't automatically think American...I beleive most american bred dogs don't have the same working drive as german bred dogs...personal opinion, from an american.

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I agree too but it is not because of the American lifestyle unless you are giving that as a reason why the breeders deliberately bred the working drives out of the dog. What I am trying to say is that the dogs didn't just evolve on their own to be like this, they were bred to have no drives. and with that, there are consequences. It is really another dog inside the altered often crippled appearing body of a german shepherd.

BTW, Black GSD, your dog is absolutely gorgeous. So is yours majiesmom.

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Edgar,

My pup was born in the US. (Both of his parents were imported.)

He was been a VERY tough/hard dog from 8 weeks. Never has backed down from ANYTHING even the adult dogs. Even as an 8 week old pup, if they tried to get him to back off by growling at him, he was IN THEIR FACES saying "Bring it ON!". Same with people, he does NOT take well to physical corrections. He would DEFIANTELY become "handler aggressive" if he was with someone that has into using a lot of "physical" corrections.

He never has been a "sweet" affectionate pup. He couldn't care less if you pet him or not. He has never had any use for "strangers" either. Even as an 8 week old, he would not go to strangers. He is NOT afraid, he is just NOT social.

Does the fact that his call name is "Crazy" tell you anything about his temperment? :) He is going Mach 2 24/7. He is VERY active. (Think Border Collie on crack!) Even at 8 weeks he would NOT lay down and rest in the house (no matter HOW tired he was) unless he was crated. There are TOO many things to do!

At 4/5 months he was exactly the same as he has been before and since.
Luckily, even though he is "crazy" he is VERY smart and will do anything for food or a toy. He is easy to train. Prey drive is "thru the roof".
He wil also grab ANYTHING that you are holding. (I cannot have him loose when I feed the horses since he jumpsand grabs the hay away from me.

He has always LOVED to jump. (Though I tried to keep him from doing too much jumping.) He even jumped over the hose when he was little, just because he wanted to. (Not like any size pup needs to "jump" over a hose that is laying on the ground.)

What are the bloodlines of your pup? Where did you get him?

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Snow,

Thanks for the compliment on my pup. :D

I agree with you too. Those that breed just for the AKC comformation ring have RUINED the (American) GSD. (IMO)

Temperment wise they are NOT what a GSD should be. While some can and do make good pets. There are a LOT that aren't even suitable as pets for "Joe Public". They have too many "issues".

If the only GSD was "American". I would change breeds. (And I am a "die hard" GSD person. I have had them since 1979.)

When I go to AKC shows. I will NOT wear any of my GSD shirts. I don't want "Joe Public" to think that I have GSDs like they see at the shows.
The sad thing is that when someone is looking for a breed of dog or a breeder once they decide the breed they want. They are ALWAYS told to "go to a dog show" and talk to breeders. Most people don't even know that there is anything other than "American" GSDs.

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Guest Anonymous
I am on a list to get an Australian Shepherd puppy from a breeder in our area. She does not breed her dogs until they get their points/titles in ob and herding etc., and does not have a large number of dogs, only 4, so does not always have puppies available. She's also very fussy on who her puppies go to.

Anyway, she just told me there are breeder's out there now who are breeding the herding instinct out of the Aussie so people who live in cities/apartments can own an Aussie.

To me, the end result will not be an Aussie! :x

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Autumn,

You are SO right. And IMO, the people are breeding the dogs without the drives are NOT "breeders". They are in it for ONE thing. To make money. They are NOT doing it to "better the breed"!

If people don't want the drives, GET A DIFFERENT BREED!!!!! Get a breed what isn't supposed to have the drives. "Breeders" shouldn't RUIN a breed to suit "Joe Public". (And a GOOD "breeder" won't!)

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OMD Black GSD, I think he just may be the most beautiful GSD I have ever seen. I showed him to my boyfriend and he thinks that we should get one just like him.....I agree. :lol: It won't be for a while though. Perhaps I could hit you up for some recommendations?

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It depends what you like. For me, I have been to Germany twice and I love the look of the German Shepards there, well I like all the dogs there. Their so much bigger than the dogs in America and are very well trained.

They look nothing like the American German Shepards. The German Version/ or the old fashion German Shepards. Are much bigger, they do not have that annoying sloping back of the American German Sheapards. They have longer hair. They look more like wolves. They are stocky, but very stong animals. They do not look like the American GS which are smaller and have that annoying slop back that looks good in a dogshow. The German GS in my mind look more like a dog or a wovle. To me they just look better. Because they haven't been messed with like the American GS

The Amercian GS isn't a German Shepard at all. They just look like the GS in Germany, but their not, they are two very different dogs. If you get a American GS you might have to deal with that annoying hip problem that they have. Because of messing around with the breeding to make them smaller and all these stupid stuff.

It just depends how what you like. You should look at pictures of the American GS and the old fashion GS and see what you like. But if you get a German version of the German Sheapard they are like 3 times more bigger than American German Sheapard, they look king size compare to the American GS.

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If you are going to get a dog, any kind of dog. It is best that you take the dog to get trained. When you have a well train dog, you become very proud of your dog, and people around you will pericate your dog more, if it is extermely well train. If anyone of you have been to Germany, then you know what I am talking about.

If you are not going to take the time to train and the money for your dog then I do not suggest that you get a dog. I myself is saving up my money for German Version GS and they are not cheap and saving the money to have it be extermely well train so I can take it to Germany when I go there. I am very impress with the dogs in Germany, because they are so well trained. It is a must for a dog to be well trained in Germany, because they have a law, if you have a dog and it is not well trained they you cannot have a dog. People in Germany take their dogs everywhere! On the train, in resturants. Yes, you can have a dog in a resturant, a store, anywhere! Wish we had that law in America. Maybe we wouldn't have so many problems with pets.

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Black can you repost your picture please? I can't view it.

I'm in the same situation as the original poster. I'm in contact with a breeder who prefers the American Shepherd. She just breed an Obedience dog with a Show dog..both american lines. Health Guarentees provided ..etc. I was going to purchase it but I'm having second thoughts. This will be my second personal dog. I have a miniature pinscher with very high energy (3years old). I walk her every day but I only went as far as obedience class. I'm thinking about doing schutzhund with the GS, agility, or something to give it a job...but I"m on the fence.

Anyone have any opinions?

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Yet again that depends how well you want it trained. Do you want your dog to be train well enough for the house or do you want it exteremly well train were you take it anywhere? For me. I am going to have my dog exteremly well train so I can take it to Germany with me. So well train if I told it to stay while I going to the supermarket it will still be there when I come back. If it has to go to the bathroom it will wait until I find a spot. To the point it will walk with me without a leash, or it will calmly sit underneath a table in a resturant and not bother the other people. Where it won't fight with the other dogs when it in public. It won't bite another people, when people pet it. Where it is calm. To the point it won't jump the fence. When it becomes to lound and you tell it to be queit it will not be loud. Even want to train my dog to bite on demand. Extermely well train.

And when getting dog always meet the breeders. Because the dog will reflex the breeder and the other dogs. And German Shepards shouldn't have any problems if the breeders takes good care of the puppy and you the owner make sure it has all it shorts and ect. Me I don't like the American German Shepard. For one it's not even a German shepard, it's a German Shepard look alike.

As I said it depends what you like you. You should look at pictures of the Old fashion German sheapards (German style) and the American German shepards and see what you like. I like very BIG dogs. So I want my German sheapard to be at least 30 inches high. Because I do not like small dogs. I like good old fahsion working farming dogs that have a lot of aduittue.

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