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Dog Breed : White Shepherd

 


A BRIEF HISTORY  

The beautiful coats of our white shepherds can be traced back to the roots of the original German Shepherd dogs. Information provided in books of the origins of the German Shepherd breed makes mention of the White Shepherd in Europe as early as 1882. A White German Shepherd was the Grandsire of Horand von Grafrathe, born in 1895, this dog is acknowledged as the foundation dog of the contemporary German Shepherd Dog bloodlines, from that time forward, the color white has been within the natural genetic color variations which make up the modern German Shepherd.

Actually, the white shepherd dog predates the GSD breed, which is a relatively new breed of dog  (The GSD as a breed is less than 100 years old). To understand the beginnings of the White Shepherd, one must discuss its parent breed Ė the German Shepherd Dog.

A White German sheepdog named Greif who was born in 1879 and was bred to 35 different bitches, producing 53 litters of which, 140 progeny were registered with the SV. He was also mated three times to his own daughters, thus fixing his genetic code into the developing breed. Of the many genetic traits that became firmly entrenched, the gene for the white coat colour would figure prominently. It would be handed down to his progeny as well as through his grandchildren and great grandchildren
.


HEIGHT & WEIGHT

The White Shepherd is a medium‑large breed.

An ideal height for a male of 25 inches (63.5 cm) at the top of the highest point of the shoulder blade, with an inch (about 3 cm) variation up or down acceptable.  

Bitches should ideally be 23 inches (58.4 cm) at the same point and again, an inch variation in either direction of the ideal is fine.

Oversized or undersized dogs, (i.e.: dogs outside of the acceptable range of height), are highly objectionable and should be faulted!

Ideal weight for a 25-inch tall male would be roughly around 75‑85 pounds (34‑39 kg), and about 60‑70 pounds (27‑32 kg) for a 23-inch tall bitch.


TEMPERAMENT  

Basic temperament is usually that of a very good‑natured dog. The breed is protective of its family in appropriate situations. They are loving and open dogs with family members but can be stand-offish or even somewhat leery of strangers, preferring the company of their own pack members.

The White Shepherd should never be aggressive! The breed, on the average, is easily trained, inquisitive, generally quite good with children and definitely eager to please. The basic temperament is softer than that of the typical coloured German Shepherd Dog.

White Shepherds can be sensitive almost to the point of timidity. They are usually quite tractable and harsh training methods should not be necessary, nor should they be used with this breed.


LIVING WITH WHITE SHEPHERD  

Itís an adventure every day! They are usually smart dogs whose brains, sense of humour and fun‑loving nature sometimes gets them into trouble. White Shepherds are wonderful dogs that can live very well with families, couples or single people. They bond very closely to the members of their family, but may be particularly fond of one special member. White Shepherds love to be near their people, often following them from one room to the next. They are in tune with peopleís feelings and emotions, giving them an almost human‑like quality.

These good qualities are tempered by the special needs of this breed. As every breed is not right for every person, we feel that it is vitally important to point out these needs. White Shepherds need a fair but firm hand and obedience training to help them fit into the familyís lifestyle. They have very active minds and they love to work! Your dog will be happiest when it has some kind of job to do. That job is, of course, up to you and your dog.    However, a White Shepherd left alone in the yard day after day will soon become bored and a bored White Shepherd can be an *extremely* destructive animal. This is a large, strong dog that can reduce furniture to splinters or a well‑planted garden to a minefield in a matter of minutes! These dogs MUST have structure and consistency in handling to help them learn their limits. Again, a firm but gentle touch will yield the best results with this breed.

Another very important part of owning a White Shepherd that cannot be ignored is exercise! This is a very busy breed; daily exercise is essential. Most shepherds love to play ball and ten to fifteen minutes of sustained fetching will tire your dog out quite nicely as well as give him a sense of purpose. Whether it is ball chasing, Frisbee catching, obedience training, participation in a canine play group or just taking long walks, you must be willing to provide some form of daily, constructive exercise to provide an acceptable outlet for this breedís considerable energies and mental capacities.  

White Shepherd stay well with our climates and temperatures just like other coloured German Shepherd anywhere in the world.   They are wonderful companions to those with whom they are familiar and wary of strangers.

White Shepherds make excellent family companions for all ages of people. They are usually very good with children as long as both the children and the dog are taught to love and respect one another. White Shepherds also get along very well with other pets. Again, respect and tolerance may need to be taught with certain types of pets.

Currently, the White Shepherd is recognized or has it own nationwide registry as listed countries:  They are Austria, Czech. Republic, Denmark, France, Nederland, Switzerland, South Africa, USA, Canada & Australia.


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