GSD General Information

How long does a German Shepherd Dog live ?

This varies greatly, but generally somewhere around 10 to 12 years of age. Some have been known to reach 15 years of age.

What should the ideal character of my GSD be like ?

The GSD must be of well balanced temperament, steady of nerve, self assured, absolutely free and easy, and (unless provoked) completely good natured, as well as alert and tractable. He/she must have courage, combative instinct and awareness, in order to be suitable as companion, watch, protection, service and herding dog. Upbringing can affect character.

What is a Long Coat/Hair ?

A “long coat” has a long, wavy, soft top coat (not lying closely) without undercoat, usually with a parting down the back, flags on ears and legs and tail. The “long coat” is a disqualifying fault within the Breed Standard, and as such is not suitable for Showing or Breeding. However this in no way detracts from its ability as a pet and companion, in fact many people have a preference for them. Long Coats will generally be sold on a “Limited Register” Pedigree.

What is a Long Stock Coat/Hair ?

A “long stock coat” has a long double coat (Long Stockhaar) with long, wavy, topcoat not lying closely, with undercoat, feathering on ears and legs, bushy breeches and bushy tail forming flags below. Long Stock coat GSD’s may be shown and bred.

What is a Normal or Stock Coat/Hair ?

The correct coat of the GSD is a double coat (Stockhaar) with undercoat. The top coat should be as dense as possible, straight, harsh and close lying. It should be short on the head, including inside the ears, the front of the legs and on the feet and toes; it is a little longer and heavier coated on the neck. The hair lengthens on the back of the legs to the pastern or hock; on the back of the thighs it forms moderate breeching.

What colour should my GSD be ?

Permissible colours are any of the following – 1. Black with reddish tan, tan, gold to light grey markings. 2. All black, and 3. all grey; in greys with dark shadings, black saddle and mask. The nose must be black in all colour types. Lacking mask, light to piercing eyes, as well as whitish markings on chest and inner sides of legs, light nails and red tip of tail are undesirable. The undercoat is of a light grey toning. The colour white is not permitted.

Should my pet bitch have a litter before she is speyed ?

No ! – It is a fallacy that a bitch should have a litter before they are speyed. Breeding is a serious responsibility, it is not simply a case of producing puppies. Breeders have a responsibility to breed quality, healthy puppies and to ensure all puppies can be found loving and suitable homes. It is the policy of all GSDCA Affiliate Clubs to only breed with animals that have successfully passed all the Breed Improvement Schemes, particularly Breed Survey. All pet dogs should be speyed.

At what minimum age should my GSD be mated ?

Matings should only occur with adult dogs (over 18 months of age) after having successfully passed the GSDCA’s hereditary disease schemes and Breed Survey. Only those males and females are deemed suitable and recommended for breeding by the GSDCA and its Affiliate State/Territory Clubs. Breeding puppies can be an expensive business and should not be attempted without commitment to betterment of the breed.

What is the GSDCA ?

The acronym GSDCA stands for the German Shepherd Dog Council of Australia Inc. The GSDCA comprises all the Australian states/territories GSD Clubs. All GSD Breed Improvement Schemes have been developed and are controlled by the GSDCA. The GSDCA is an affiliate of the Australian National Kennel Council (ANKC).