One of the most popular dog breeds in the world is the German Shepherds. This breed is so much adored by dog lovers as they are known to have a loyal nature.
More so, the tough physique and high intelligence of a German shepherd make them ideal for carrying out various tasks. They have served several purposes from herds and farm dogs to becoming a K9 dog, to Hollywood star, and babysitting.
This dog breed is also seen to do gallant rescue and police works. They also help for domestic purposes, such as being a family watchdog.
While you may be aware of the physical attributes of German Shepherds, there are many more interesting facts relating to this dog breed that you may not know about.
Here are some awesome facts about German Shepherds:
They are the second most popular dog breed in the United States
Millions of U.S. citizens are dog lovers and each dog owner has their favorite breed. The German Shepherd Dog is the second most popular dog breed in the U.S. This is mainly because this dog breed is quite diverse in nature.
The German Shepherds are popular family pets and they can serve in other capacities, such as guard dogs, performing dogs, show dogs, and dogs that serve in the military or police.
As this dog breed serves as both pets and working dogs, this accounts for their high number in the United States.
German Shepherds go by many names
You probably know this dog breed to be called German Shepherd Dog alone. But the truth is that they have many other names. In Germany, their country of origin, this dog breed is called a Deutscher Shaferhund. In Ireland and England, this breed is also called Alsatian or Berger Allemand.
Due to the popularity of this breed in the United States, Americans started deliberating on removing the German part of their name from the year 1914. In 1917, the American Kennel Club did remove the Garman part and the breed was known as the Shepherd dog. Some members, however, voted in 1930 to change the name back to its original version.
They were first bed by Max von Stephanitz
The first German Shepherd was born in 1889 and was bred by Max von Stephanitz, a man known today as the father of German Shepherd dogs.
While breeding dogs for shepherding, Max saw a wolf-like dog with a yellow and gray body. It was then he began to standardize a breed of shepherd dogs known as the German Shepherd Dog.
Max saw this dog breed first at a dog show and the dog was called Horand von Grafath, and this dog became the first registered German Shepherd Dog.
However, many people today criticize the modern German Shepherd Dogs to have strayed away from the original ideology of the breed by Max von Stephanitz. He believed that this breed should be used primarily for work purposes and that any defect that arises during the breeding process should be eliminated quickly.
A sport was developed specifically for German Shepherds
Dogs are often used in many sports, although not many dog breeds can claim that a sport has been created specifically in their honor.
However, a sport called Schutzhund was developed for German Shepherds, and there is a club for this sport called the United Schutzhund Clubs of America.
The club stated that the sport was specifically developed to test the natural abilities of the German Shepherd Dog and to identify unstable and untrainable dogs.
More so, this sported in Germany, but today, there are many other dog breeds that compete in this sport. However, the sport is so much demanding that only a few breeds have the capability to participate.
Some of the qualities tested by this sport include courage, intelligence, desire to work, the bond with the dog handler, perseverance, sense of smell, trainability, and protective instinct.
German Shepherds were used in World War 1 and 2
One interesting fact about this breed of dog is that they aided the armed forces during World War 1. The German Shepherds served both the Germans and the allied forces. This dog was used for a variety of roles and was taught how to parachute from aircraft.
The services rendered by this breed of dog throughout the war increased their popularity in the U.S. The soldiers were so impressed by what the German Shepherd Dog could do and returned with one of the dogs after the war ended.
Due to the impact of this breed of dog in World War 1, they were also used throughout World War 2. They helped to deliver messages, warn soldiers of traps or hazards, as rescue dogs, and as personal guard dogs.
Rin Tin Tin became one of the most famous German Shepherds in History
Rin Tin Tin was a famous German Shepherd Dog that hit the silver screen, and arguably, became the most famous German Shepherd Dog of all time.
This dog is also famous for being the first rescue dog in the U.S as an American Soldier rescued him from the battlefields of World War 1.
However, Rin Tin Tin was not rescued in Germany but in France, so it was not German at all. And that’s why he was named after a French puppet.
Rin Tin Tin was presented the Legacy Award in 2011 by the American Humane Association. In fact, he was one of the first few non-humans that got a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. And between 1922 and 1931, Rin Tin Tin appeared in 27 films.
Strongheart was one of the first set of German Shepherds to star in the movies
One German Shepherd that was first used in Hollywood movies and got to the heights of fame was called Strongheart. This dog was privately bred in 1917 by a German breeder and his name was registered as Etzel won Oeringen.
Strongheart first appeared on screen in 1921 after Director Laurence Timble saw the great potential of the dog and persuaded screenwriter Jane Murfin to get him. His stage name became “Strongheart,” and he appeared in four films by Jane Murfin.
Strongheart’s debut movie was in an outdoor adventure film titled “The Silent Call,” which was shot in 1921. After that movie, strongheart was also featured in another movie, titled “Brawn of the North” still in 1921. Other movies include, “The love master” in 1924, and “White Fang” in 1925.
German Shepherd Dogs have a club for seniors
German Shepherd Dog puppies are lovely to have around and the adult dogs are often used for working purposes. However, during the later years of these dogs, most people do not think about them.
Notwithstanding, the senior German Shepherd Dogs are not completely forgotten as they have a club called “The Thirteen Club.” This club is within the German Shepherd Club of America and it is for seniors that are aged twelve and above.
German Shepherds are very popular among dog breeds. In fact, people around the globe are keen to have a German Shepherd Dog as part of their family. This dog is known for its high versatility and intelligence and they are used for different purposes from a family pet to a guard dog, performing dog, show dog, and military dog.
You can add a German Shepherd Dog to your family today and train them to help you with different functions.