German Shepherds are known the world over. These dogs are generally known to be fearless and protective. That’s great news if you are the owner of a Black German Shepherd or perhaps thinking of buying your own pure black family dog.
If this is your intent then, before you commit, it is advisable to learn everything possible about your new dog breed. After all, it’s exceptionally easy to be overcome by the look of cute black German Shepherd puppies. This will assist you in forgetting the day-to-day needs.
The History Of The Black German Shepherd
The original German Shepherd dog was a result of interbreeding between an array of herding dog breeds. The aim was the creation of a fantastic working dog. The various characteristics fell into place in the form of the German Shepherd.
This was the dog selected for police duties and rescue roles. It even played a role in the First World War.
Black German Shepherds were thought of as a weaker version of the traditional multi-colored dog. However, the American Kennel Club recognizes the recessive gene that causes black coated German Shepherds. In fact, the black GS is seen as a pureblood within the breed standard. This is because it is a naturally occurring event.
This breed of dog is still reasonably rare. Although, it is also one of the most popular companion animals in the world.
The best examples in modern times are the result of the selective breeding process. But the same can be said of any purebred dog. It was this selective process that happened so many years ago, that gave humans the impressive German Shepherd.
They are not just known for loyalty, in the past, they have been called noble and diligent.
The Original Black German Shepherd
The original German Shepherd dog was used by the Germans to protect herds of sheep. After the First World War, the word ‘German’ was dropped from the name. At the time there were worries about negative images and the dog’s popularity.
The UK Kennel Club renamed the dog ‘Alsatian wolf dog.” However, this was also dropped against fears that the name would invoke fear into people and reduce their popularity.
The original name was restored in 1931.
It generally takes two black GSDs to create a black German Shepherd puppy. It can happen with one black parent and one not but this is generally a consequence of luck rather than planning.
Many words have been used to describe the traditional German Shepherd. These include active, stable, loyal, highly intelligent, obedient, and even courageous.
Those same words can be used to describe the black GSDS
Thanks to its intelligence the black German Shepherd is often called upon as a guard dog. It has a double coat that insulates it. Helping to keep it warm and dry even in harsh climates.
The same qualities are what make the black German Shepherd such a loyal and loving companion. As with most dogs, it simply needs a leader. Earn your dog’s respect and it will do anything for you.
These dogs are sociable, friendly, loyal, and eager to please. They get along well with other dogs and, in most instances, cats. They also generally love children and will fit comfortably into family life.
However, it should be noted that these are large dogs and they need regular exercise. It’s advisable to allow at least 60 minutes of walking a day. This will help them to help them burn off excess energy.
Keeping them cooped up is likely to increase their boredom rate. This will increase the likelihood of them chewing up things that you don’t want them to.
Size & Coat
A male black German Shepherd should be between 24 and 26 inches high, that’s 60-65cm. A male will register between 65-90 pounds. A female is likely to hit 50-75 pounds. The average lifespan of these dogs is 9-13 years. Owning one is a real commitment for life, not just a passing fad.
These dogs are generally an inch or two larger than a standard German Shepherd.
Their black coats are actually two-layered. The top soft fur, the underlying layer is insulate and waterproof. This is what makes them so good as working dogs. The coat on a black GSD is generally straighter than on a standard counterpart. It is dense and almost wiry, as befits a dog that is designed for outside work.
It is also worth noting that a true black German Shepherd will be born black and stay black. Puppies born with one black parent and one traditional colored may be born black and change color as they grow.
If you are concerned about this happening, you must wait until they are at least 10 weeks old. If the coat is going to change color, it will start to do so by then.
How To Choose A Black German Shepherd Puppy
The first thing you should do is read this guide. Then make sure you are familiar and comfortable with the type of dog you are getting.
You then need to find people offering a black German Shepherd in your area. Most importantly you need to confirm that they are professional breeders. The dog you wish to get is a purebred. There should be certificates to confirm this.
It’s essential that you verify and review sellers. There are people selling black German Shepherds that are not pure. This may result in them not having the temperament you expect.
Check with friends, vets, and social media to ensure you are getting what you are paying for.
You can also check posture. Make sure their eyes are bright and even give them a test run in your home.
Of course, the black German Shepherd is considered rarer than the traditional sable colored dogs. This means it is generally more expensive. You will need to consider this when hunting for the right black GSD.
Looking After Your German Shepherd
As already mentioned, your black GS should have at least 60 minutes of walking every day. If it doesn’t it is likely to gain weight and this is likely to increase the risk of health problems. It will also become frustrated, making it more likely to chew things in your home.
This doesn’t mean you have to walk your dog every day for an hour. It will depend on whether it walks on the lead or you have a space it can go free. If this is not possible you’ll find it beneficial for your dog to play fetch with you in the garden.
Feeding & Training A Black German Shepherd
The average black German Shepherd will consume 20 calories per pound of body weight per day. That is equal to 1,300 to 1,800 calories a day. You should invest in quality dog food and alongside this a good pet feeder is essential. It will challenge your dog and help them not to eat too fast. It’s best to split this over 3 or 4 meal times, it helps to keep your dog engaged and calm.
Training should start as soon as you get the puppy. It is best to be done in small bursts. Black German Shepherds are highly intelligent and need to be stimulated. Alternatively play with them at various points throughout the day. This will stop them from becoming bored.
When they are bored they are most likely to cause trouble or start chewing things they shouldn’t.
Training should always be reward-based. This instills confidence and happiness in your dog. Punishment-based training generally creates nervousness and unpredictable behavior.
It is also essential that they meet plenty of people when they are puppies. Socializing will help to prevent them from being wary of strangers. Otherwise this can be an issue for this protective breed.
You also spend some time training them to be without you. German Shepherds in general love to be with their owners. If they are not accustomed to being apart they can develop separation anxiety. That leads to destructive habits.
Health Concerns To Be Aware Of
Unfortunately, the black German Shepherd is a larger dog. That brings risk to their health, particularly as they age. The biggest issues facing black German Shepherds are
- Hip dysplasia
- Spinal cord disease
- Back stiffness
All of these will give them mobility problems later in life.
However, the black German Shepherd tends to have a straighter back than the other types of German Shepherd. This will reduce the likelihood of hip dysplasia happening.
Miscellaneous Useful Facts
Black German Shepherd owners should be aware that this type of dog sheds a lot. This is mainly due to the fact they have a double coat. The best way to reduce hairs on the floor of your home is to brush your black GS. Do this at least once a week. It will help but probably not eliminate the hair.
It is also a good idea to invest in a high-quality hair removing brush. This will help to keep your soft furnishings looking as good as you want them to.
Black German Shepherds are traditionally thought of as guard dogs or service dogs. But, they excel as companion dogs. Providing you give them enough attention and interact with them to stop boredom. You will find that these beautiful dogs are loyal, friendly, and calm.
In short, they could be the perfect dog for you and your loved ones. All you have to do is find a true black German Shepherd. Then, start training as you fall in love with it.
Want to find out the traits and difference with the White German Shepherd? Find your answers here.