The German Shepherd is a great instinctive watch dog and guard dog. She makes a wonderful pet. She can be kept in an apartment but she needs extensive walking to make this work. A more ideal situation for her is a loving home with a properly fenced in enclosure for her to exercise in. She requires a lot of attention and something to do or she may get bored and destructive. She is great with children, a very intelligent fast learner, and a fine companion.
Just a reminder, never leave a child alone with a dog or puppy for any length of time. *Approximate Adult Size. The approximate adult size of the German Shepherd male (two years old or older) is 24 to 26 inches to the withers (highest point of the shoulder) and 22 to 24 inches to the withers for a female. Both sexes weight may range from 75 to 95 pounds.
*Special Health Considerations. Most dog breeds have certain inherited health problems associated with that specific breed and the German Shepherd is no exception. Be careful of canine hip and elbow dysplasia (genetic based looseness in the hip joint that can lead to arthritis pain and lameness), bloat (Gastric Dilation-Volvulus, the second leading killer of dogs, can kill within the hour, this space is too limited for a complete explanation but you should read up on this), flea allergies, chronic eczema, Panosteitis (a serious inflammation of the long bones), congenital heart problems, Von Willebrands disease (a problem with blood clotting), and keratitis. This disease list is an informative guideline only.
Other diseases may also be significant threats, please contact your veterinarian for a complete list. *Grooming. The German Shepherd should be bathed rarely as this strips her coat of its protective oils and this can aggravate skin problems. She should be brushed daily if possible. She is a heavy shedder and brushing will help keep your house cleaner.
Brushing will help her maintain a clean and healthy coat and also help you keep a closer eye on her health and strengthen your emotional bond with your pet. Her teeth should be brushed at least twice a week with toothpaste and toothbrush designed for dogs. Brushing removes the accumulation of plaque and tartar which can cause cavities (rarely) and periodontal disease. Dog periodontal disease can lead to pain, loss of teeth, bad breath and other serious disease.
Her toenails may need to be examined for growth and clipped regularly. The toenails of the rear feet grow slower than the toenails of the front feet. Generally a guillotine type trimmer is the best for this chore and competent instructions to accomplish this can be found on the net. She should visit the veterinarian several times in the first year for shots, boosters and check up. Then, as an adult, she should visit the veterinarian yearly for shots and check up. As she gets older, six years and on, she should visit the veterinarian twice a year for check ups and shots.
*Life Span. The German Shepherd can live between 12 and 13 years with proper nutrition, medical care and excellent living conditions. *History.
The German Shepherd line was started by Captain Max von Stephanitz, known as the father of the breed. They came to America as early as 1907. Shepherds became more popular after World War I when returning servicemen experienced their value in combat.
American soldiers brought some examples of this breed back to the US and they became popular as pets and working dogs. The American Kennel Club first registered the German Shepherd in 1908. Today she is one of the most popular dogs and is used as a companion, blind leader, watchdog, guardian, police dog and herding dog.
Some Registries: *German Shepherd Dog Club of America *UKC United Kennel Club *NKC National Kennel Club *CKC Continental Kennel Club *APRI Americas Pet Registry Inc. *AKC American Kennel Club *FCI Federation Cynologique Internationale *NZKC New Zealand Kennel Club *KCGB Kennel Club of Great Britain *ANKC Australian National Kennel Club *ACR American Canine Registry Litter Size: 5 to 10 German Shepherd puppies Category: Herding, Terms To Describe:Well muscled, alert, agile, strong, direct, fearless, eager, self-confident, aloof, *SPECIAL GOOD POINTS Very good watchdog. Very good guard dog. Highly intelligent. Exceptionally trainable. Make a wonderful companion.
Bark only when they need to. Strong protective instinct. Loves children. Wants to please. Can handle cold well.
Forms strong emotional bond with owners. *SPECIAL BAD POINTS A confident and strong owner is necessary. May be suspicious of children not in immediate family. May try to outsmart you. Can be destructive if not properly trained or if bored.
They do poorly if isolated. *Other Names Known By: Alsatian, Deutscher Schaferhund, police dog *Every dog is an individual so not everything in this information may be correct for your dog. This information is meant as a good faith guideline only.
Mitch Endick is a short article writer, editor and website developer for the popular pet site petpages.com. www.petpages.com is a pet information site with free pet ads, dog classifieds, and puppy for sale info Petpages.com also offers information on cats, fish, reptiles, birds, ferrets, rabbits, mice and even pet bugs.