- Black German Shepherd Appearance
- Black German Shepherd History and Origin
- Black German Shepherd Temperament
- Exercising and Training Needs Of The Black German Shepherd
- Health and Care of The Black German Shepherd
- Grooming Your Black German Shepherd
- Black German Shepherd Puppy Price
- Is The Black German Shepherd The Right Dog For You?
Quick Question, have you ever seen a black German Shepherd dog? If you haven’t it is probably because this specific German Shepherd ‘color variety’ is very rare. Yep, if you take note, the words “color variety” was used and not breed, this is because unlike what many think, the black German Shepherd, is actually still just a regular purebred German Shepherd, with a different color coat. It is not a separate breed or a result of crossbreeding.
The unique thing about this color variation of the German Shepherd is that they are incredibly rare to come across. In fact, they are so rare, that there are very few German Shepherd clubs or dog kennel clubs that actually recognize the black German Shepherd as an actual German Shepherd. Now you might have seen a black and tan German Shepherd, this is one of the most popular color variations, but a German Shepherd with a fully black coat is truly rare.
This article is dedicated entirely to the black German Shepherd dog breed as we will provide you with all the information you need on the breed color variation. Everything from its history and origin to its temperament and traits, to its overall health and care program. We will also provide some useful tips for owning the black German Shepherd, so do ensure you read this till the end.
Other German Shepherd Colors
- Sable German Shepherd: A Special Dog Breed with a Special Color
- Blue German Shepherd: Beautiful and Loyal Companion With a Unique Coat
- Brindle German Shepherd: A Complete Breed Guide
- Isabella German Shepherd: Rare Coat Pattern But Great Personality
- White German Shepherd: History, Temperament, Health, and Care
- Bi-Color German Shepherd: Beautiful and Unique Dog With a Special Color
Black German Shepherd Appearance
When comparing the black German Shepherd with other German Shepherd color variations, you will find that they basically are the same breed. They share the same build as they are all large dogs with a powerful build. The males can weigh between 60 pounds to about 90 pounds and the females are slightly smaller weighing between 50 pounds to 80 pounds. But in general, you can see that these are large dogs, so it is important you always consider the size factor when adding one to your home.
Asides from their large size, they are also quite tall for dogs as you can find the breed’s height to be anywhere from 20 inches to about 26 inches for both the male and female genders (You might see the male German Shepherd as slightly taller, but this is because they are bulkier than female German Shepherds).
The only major distinction between the black German Shepherd and other color variations is the black color. As stated earlier, most German Shepherds do have the black color in their coats, but this is often paired with another color, like red or tan, but black German Shepherds are fully black, with no color pairing whatsoever in their coats. They do come with double coats just like other German Shepherds, which helps protect them from very harsh climates.
As we have stated earlier, the black German Shepherd is not accepted by a lot of dog kennel clubs, but the American Kennel Club (arguably the leading canine kennel club), does accept the breed color variation. The black German Shepherd is a purebred German Shepherd with a very rare coloration. It is a clear testament that the black color gene in German Shepherds (which was once thought to be recessive) is actually dominant, we only just don’t see it because not many dogs have it.
Looking into the black German Shepherd’s eyes, you’ll find that they are actually black and not blue like so many might think (blue eyes are extremely rare for German Shepherds, it is a result of cross-breeding, just like the Siberian Huskies). They also spot the same ears as the regular German Shepherd variations.
Black German Shepherd History and Origin
Black German Shepherds have the same breed history and origins as regular German Shepherds. They are bred to be awesome herding dogs with powerful working traits instilled in the breed. The first German Shepherd was bred in the year 1899. It was named Horand von Grafrath and it was made the main poster dog for the first German Shepherd club named the “Society for German Shepherd Dogs”.
Horand von Grafrath is seen as the father of most German Shepherd dogs we see today as a lot coming from him. A lot of his puppies were bred together in order to help improve the continuity of these superior herding dogs. Black German Shepherds are also a result of the breeding practices of the early 90s.
Not a lot of German Shepherds from that era came with the fully black gene, and the few that existed were often seen as defects, in fact, there is a myth that most of the black German Shepherds from the past were probably culled from birth. So we might just be seeing a recurrence in modern times.
Black German Shepherd Temperament
There is a common misconception about German Shepherd dogs in relation to them being aggressive dogs. This is rather not true, what we have is an intelligent dog breed with a very protective nature for the people and things that it loves. So as long as you don’t show any signs of ill will, you should be fine with the black German Shepherd (or any other German Shepherd color variation).
When it comes to strangers, it might be hard getting the German Shepherd to like you instantly, they can be fond of people, but when it comes to strangers, they usually are quite unsure of what their true intentions are so they usually ignore them except they become too suspicious to the German Shepherd, then they might be quite vocal about their discomfort. Also, German shepherds in general do not have a stronger bite force than other large dog breeds, they usually stay at the same level. All in all, get the notion that the breed is aggressive off your mind.
Black German Shepherds like other German Shepherds are very energetic dogs, they require large spaces to play around in, so if you plan on owning one, know that a small apartment might not be the best housing for a German Shepherd. Keep them in a yard where they have enough space to run around. You should also consider exercising them every day as they require a means to dispel some of that pent-up energy.
The black German Shepherd is blessed with an innate protective nature that makes them a great protection dog for their owners or family. But one cool thing about the black German Shepherd is that they are very intelligent and can be trained with relative ease so long as you employ the proper training method.
As large dogs, German Shepherds in general are blessed with high prey drives. This means they might not be the best dogs to have around smaller dogs or smaller cats. Even though they are not aggressive, they might accidentally hurt these animals during the period of playing so it is always best to have an adult around German Shepherds during this play date. That way they can monitor the activities rather closely.
Exercising and Training Needs Of The Black German Shepherd
As we have stated earlier, one cool thing about all German Shepherds is that they easily can be trained, and this is particularly true for the black German Shepherd. It is blessed with high intelligence so it is able to focus more during training sessions and pick up commands pretty easily and do them when asked to.
But it is highly important that you train your German Shepherd from a young age to ensure that their overly protective nature doesn’t end up being a dangerous trait for the nice breed. Alongside training, another important program to introduce your German Shepherd to is socialization. This helps them become more confident dogs around new people, animals, and various new experiences.
To get the best out of both training and socialization of the black German Shepherd, you have to ensure they receive this at the early stage in their life when they are still rather small in size and are even more intelligent, rapidly absorbing new information and experiences. When they grow older, you might have a little bit of difficulty training your German Shepherd adult, so start when they are puppies.
You can try getting professionals to do both training and socialization for you especially if you are a new dog owner, you need an experienced handler with proper knowledge on how to implement positive reinforcement techniques on your German Shepherd. For a special bonding session, consider taking your black German Shepherd dog on two medium to long-distance walks each day, but the duration of the walk should depend on the age of the black German Shepherd and how strong their bones and joints are.
Health and Care of The Black German Shepherd
When comparing the black German Shepherd with their cousins, the black and tan German Shepherd, you will find that they share basically the same health issues with each other. This is because their coat color does not have any associations with any health defects.
However, if you are getting a German Shepherd whether black or any other color variation, then you have to be certain you are dealing with a good breeder that utilizes the proper breeding practices to ensure that only the healthiest dogs are produced.
As a special recommendation, we ask that you only purchase a black German Shepherd dog that was bred to be a working dog and not a show dog. This is because show dogs are bred to meet high extents of the breed standards which can cause some health challenges for them as they develop, this makes the working black German Shepherd dog a great option.
What Health Issues Is Your Black German Shepherd Prone To?
Now that we have established that the black German Shepherd practically shares the same health issues as the regular German Shepherd, what are these issues that could affect the quality of life enjoyed by your precious black German Shepherd?
We will start with the most common for German Shepherds, which is hip and elbow dysplasia. This happens when the ball and socket joints of your German Shepherd dog do not align the right way. It can lead to severe health issues for your German Shepherd in the long run.
It is quite painful but it can be avoided in a number of ways. One would be to avoid overfeeding your German Shepherd as a puppy, another way it could come up would be by over-exercising your German Shepherd dog, especially as a puppy so ensure you avoid doing that.
DDR German Shepherds, which are a specific line of German Shepherds are known to have rare cases of hip and elbow dysplasia, you can try purchasing a healthy black DDR German Shepherd to avoid situations like this.
Black German Shepherds are also prone to Degenerative Myelopathy especially if they are predisposed to the condition. Good breeders could ensure tests are run on their German Shepherd sires and dams to be sure they are free from this condition before breeding takes place.
Other common health defects that could affect the black German Shepherd are Von Willebrand disease and Exocrine pancreatic insufficiency. They can be diagnosed by running tests on the sire or dam as well as the puppy and can be treated with the right medications.
Grooming Your Black German Shepherd
How often you decide to groom your black German Shepherd dog should depend on the coat type of your dog. German Shepherds have two main coat types: the medium-haired coat and the long-haired coat type. Take out time to study your dog’s coat type.
For a medium coat type, you need to brush less frequently than you would the long coat type. Brhing can be limited to 2 or 3 times each week. While the long-haired coat type would require you to brush its coat every day.
The breed has two coats, an upper coat, and an undercoat, which means German Shepherds quite a lot, so if you suffer from dog allergies, this might not be the best breed for you. The spring and fall seasons are the most shedding periods for the German Shepherd.
Black German Shepherd Puppy Price
So let’s say we have sold you on the black German Shepherd, and you have a breeder willing to sell a high-quality black German Shepherd to you, how much would they cost? Let’s find out. First off how much does a regular German Shepherd dog cost?
On average depending on the breeder you intend to purchase your dog from, an average regular German Shepherd should cost between $500 and $1500 (again it could change in price depending on a few factors).
However, for a very rare black German Shepherd, expect to pay quite a large sum for desiring such a beauty. They should cost between $800 and $2500 depending on the breeder you intend to work with. There is also the option of adopting one from a breeder, but judging from the high rarity of this particular German Shepherd variation, it should be pretty difficult to get a black German Shepherd breeder from adoption or rescue.
Now in all you do, never get a German Shepherd from a backyard breeder or puppy mill promising to sell you a black German Shepherd at a rather inexpensive price. They might seem cheap but puppies bred by such a breeder are usually of low quality as they are bred mainly for the profit of sale and not to be happy, well-appreciated, and healthy dogs.
You want to ask the right question with any breeder you are interested in. Ask about their breeding program and the conditions in which the German Shepherds are introduced as puppies. Also, ask about their vaccination records and dewormings.
And since the black German Shepherd is an AKC-recognized color variation, ask the breeders if they are registered and ensure you see evidence of this. You also want to be sure the parents were tested for Genetic health issues as well as orthopedic health issues. And if the breeder claims that they utilize only imports in their program, you should demand the certification that proves this.
Is The Black German Shepherd The Right Dog For You?
There are a lot of things to consider before owning any of the German Shepherd color variations, not just the black. Ibe if such things to consider is the breed’s energetic level. Remember, if you do not exercise your German Shepherds regularly, they can become pretty destructive.
Also, your German Shepherd needs enough space to play and run around, living in an apartment is fine and good, but it might not be the best place for a large breed like the German Shepherd.
But all in all, the black German Shepherd makes a great companion for both the individual and the family. Their protective nature shows that they are very loyal creatures, but ensure you properly train and socialize them at an early age to ensure their protective energy doesn’t become a problem in the future.
The high rarity of the black German Shepherd makes it a truly remarkable dog breed to have. That being said, we do recommend that you treat them with the right mix of love, care, and attention.
Ensure you give them the much-needed exposure through basic socialization and training for them to mature into proper adults. This is all we have for you in this article, you can check out the website for more articles like this.