German Shepherd breeders
German Shepherds are native to Germany. The first of the breed was a sheep-herding dog. This dog, given the name Horand von Grafath, became the first German Shepherd registered in the German Shepherd Dog Club of Germany in 1899. The breed was registered with the AKC in 1911. German Shepherd breeders are common in North America due to the high demand not only for purebred German Shepherds, but for Shepherds with specific training. A German Shepherd breeder may specialize in training this breed for the visually impaired, for the police, and for use in tracking and protection. The Germans have a special training program for Shepherds to become "Schutzhunds," or protection dogs.
German Shepherds are easier to train than many other breeds because of their inherent courage, physical and mental strength, work ethic, intelligence, loyalty and hardiness. German Shepherd dogs are well suited to any job that allows them to protect and serve. There is no better protector than a German Shepherd.
Purebred German Shepherds have specific characteristics. They should also have registration papers or some form of pedigree, preferably from the American Kennel Club. Because German Shepherds are trained in various tasks and graduate from training programs, their lineage should reflect the rankings and accomplishments of their parents. The German Shepherd breeder should have his or her own kennel, and dogs should receive daily contact, grooming, socializing and training.
A reputable German Shepherd breeder will provide not only registration papers and certification of ancestry (preferably AKC certified) but also medical records showing evidence of health and immunization. These documents are necessary to determine whether you are getting a purebred, healthy German Shepherd.
Now that you know basic German Shepherd traits and medical conditions, how to care for your Shepherd, what to look for in a German Shepherd breeder, and what purpose you will utilize your Shepherd for, it is time to find the perfect German Shepherd. Though many buyers want a purebred puppy, buying a purebred adult dog can be a good alternative. Adults are already trained, housebroken and socialized. Also, there are many adult German Shepherds who are far less likely to find homes than the adorable puppies sold by breeders.
German Shepherd rescue centers save Shepherds from abusive, neglectful or uncaring environments. There are bad breeders who try to sell fake dogs and there are even worse breeders who sell purebred, but often unhealthy, dogs out of puppy mills. Puppy mills are kennels where dogs are housed in small cages, constantly bred and provided with little to no socialization.
Rescue centers re-socialize the dogs and foster or adopt them out to loving homes. Consider a rescued German Shepherd as an alternative when buying your dog.