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who should own a German Shepherd Dog?
German Shepherds need a strong, confident owner & whilst they make excellent family pets they need to be socialised with other dogs & people from an early age in this capacity. They are very protective & bond strongly with their family.

GSDs would prefer to be with their people most of the time & they need plenty of exercise. They are not recommended for families that do not intend to make them part of the family circle & they need a firm consistent approach.

In general, the German Shepherd Dog is highly recommended for the right owner/family.

The GSD, without doubt, is one of the most beautiful, noble & intelligent members of the canine race, though care in socialisation from an early age is essential.

why should I buy from a registered breeder?
Purchasing a puppy from a breeder registered with a Canine Association will give the puppy buyers some assurance that they are buying a quality puppy with less chance of suffering from the heriditary diseases that sometimes occur in the German Shepherd Dog Breed.

Generally, most GSDC members comply with the Breed Improvement Schemes.

what is the difference between the main register & limited register pedigrees?
registrations are issued by the Victorian Canine Association (VCA), after application by a VCA registered Breeder.

The Main Register pedigrees are blue in colour, whilst the Limited Register pedigrees are orange in colour, and are both A4 size.

Dogs registered on the Limited Register may not be exhibited in conformation shows, nor can they be bred with, but can still be entered in Obedience Trials. Whilst dogs registered on the Main Register are eligible to participate in all of the above areas.

what should I look for & do when purchasing a puppy?

  • Research the breed first and foremost. Be sure that a German Shepherd Dog is right for you and your family.
  • Select a reputable breeder (by this I do not necessarily mean that you should go to the breeder who has won the most ribbons).
  • Visit the kennels where the pups were born. Be satisfied that the kennels, yards are clean and tidy. This is a must. Do not be fobbed off for any reason!! If you are not encouraged to visit the kennel you do not want to buy from that breeder.
  • View the Dam and also the Sire, though sometimes viewing the sire is not practicable, as an interstate stud dog may have sired the litter.
  • After our puppies are whelped we require the puppy purchaser to visit our kennels at least twice.
  • Check and see that the puppies are clean, healthy and outgoing.
  • The breeder should also give the purchaser a puppy booklet with diet, 5 generation pedigree, contract of sale and helpful information on raising your GSD puppy.
  • Breeders should offer ongoing support for the life of the puppy.

what age will my puppy be able to leave the breeder?
It is against Dogs Victoria's regulations for registered breeders to sell you a puppy before the age of 8 weeks.
A reputable breeder will ensure that their puppies are at least eight weeks old before you can take your puppy home.
Generally puppies are weaned by six weeks of age. However, the period following weaning is critical to a puppy in learning pack behaviour from his/her mother & siblings.

male or female?
This is usually one of the first questions prospective puppy owners generally ask.
Choosing between a male or female dog is strictly a matter of preference. From our experience, I will say that males are more protective of their surrounding area, while females are more protective of their family (your family).

Personally I feel a female makes a better family pet for children and in the home environment.
Male dogs make wonderful pets, it is what you desire to choose and work with.

The Male

  • Generally, the German Shepherd Dog male is larger in size and more masculine in structure.
  • The size and the masculinity of the male, most often is intimidating to strangers.
  • German Shepherd Dog males are generally more territorial of their location. The marking of the territory can be a problem. How-ever, if trained properly, the problem can be controlled. Neutering may help lighten this problem.
  • German Shepherd Dog males are also larger in size and bulk than a female.

The Female

  • The female German Shepherd Dog should be smaller in size and feminine in structure. Her gender is easily recognizable from a distance.
  • Female German Shepherd Dogs have the 'pack' instinct. They will be protective of their family more so than males. This instinct will sometimes cause her to be jealous among the other dogs in the household.
  • If you are not intending to breed the female German Shepherd Dog, she should be spayed.

should I buy from a pet shop or market?
It is against the Victorian Canine Association and German Shepherd Dog Council regulations for breeders to sell puppies to pet shops and markets.

Purchasing a puppy is a life time decision that should be taken very carefully and not on impulse.

If you do buy from either pet shops or markets you will be unable to see the parents of the puppy or the environment where that puppy was raised and you could not possibly be confident of the puppy's health or for that matter the health of the parents.

what is the difference between 'main' and 'limited' register pedigrees?
The breeder applies to their state canine association for, and is issued with, a
pedigree registration  for each puppy in a litter.

Puppies on the Main register are given a blue coloured registered pedigree that entitles the owner to exhibit and breed the dog.

Puppies on the Limited register are given an orange coloured pedigree but are unable to participate in shows and are unable to be bred with. Limited register dogs can still be entered in obedience trials and should be encouraged to do so.

how much does a GSD puppy cost?
A quality puppy may cost in the vicinity of $1500 to $2000.

what is a long coat?
The correct German Shepherd Dog's coat is relatively short, with an obvious undercoat. The coat is quite waterproof.
Some dogs are born with long coats, which are usually devoid of undercoat.

Many pet owners prefer long coated German Shepherd Dogs and this in no way detracts from the dog's ability to act as an obedience, pet or companion dog.

*** At the October 2011 ANKC Ltd Board meeting the GSDCA submission that Registration of Long Stock Coat (Langstockhaar) German Shepherd Dogs was endorsed and Registrations are to commence immediately.
Showing Long Stock Coat (Langstockhaar) GSDs commenced 1st January 2012

Long Stock Coat  (Langstockhaar).

what should I feed my puppy?
Your puppy's breeder should give you a
diet sheet and recommend the food they think is suitable for your puppy's growth to adulthood.

If your breeder has not given a diet sheet , contact your Veterinarian

how much should I exercise my puppy?
The puppy is only very young and will not require much
exercise, just be allowed to play and rest when he wants to. He is too young to go on walks for the first four months, as it places too much stress on growing bones and joints.

After the puppy reaches 16 weeks of age, he can go on short walks of approximately 5 minutes duration, around the block or to the local shops, school or park.

After the age of 6 months, the puppy can generally be walked more often and for slightly longer periods, but must be allowed to rest when tired.

At 12 months of age, the puppy can walk, run etc. as often as you like and for longer distances as he will have achieved his final skeletal growth and will be starting to develop muscle.

Prior to this the puppy does not have enough muscle to support the bones and joints, so walking and exercise should be moderate.

Careful exercise when young and not overdoing it will give you a sound and healthy adult for life!

from what age can I take my puppy to obedience classes?
To be part of the 'responsible owner fraternity', we suggest the new owner takes their puppy to obedience classes from 8 weeks of age.

Obedience training will assist in your puppy becoming a well adjusted member of our community.

If you are taking your puppy to a registered club, all animals taking part in any form of training are checked on a regular basis to see that their vaccinations are current.

​**We believe that the training and socialisation of dogs is crucial in preventing behavioural problems. All breed clubs provide exposure to a variety of dogs in all shapes and sizes which provides a more rounded experience for your family companion. Dogs should be taught to socialise in a positive manner with a wide range of dogs from an early age and this is difficult to achieve by restricting your training to a single breed club. There are a number of All Breed Dog Clubs that our puppy/dog owners have recommended, see our Links list.

when should I vaccinate my puppy/dog?
If you have purchased your puppy from a registered breeder, you will have received a vaccination card in your puppy gift pack that says the puppy has been vaccinated at 6 weeks of age with his temporary vaccination. You will see that the next vaccination is due when the puppy is 12 weeks of age.

Your puppy/dog will then be vaccinated a year later (at approx 15 months of age). After this vaccination at approximately 15 months, some veterinarians advocate vaccinating every 3 years. Be advised by your qualified veterinary surgeon as to what vaccinations your puppy/dog needs.
here  for more information about vaccinations.

how long does a german shepherd dog live?
Regular veterinary care, vaccinating as recommended by your qualified veterinary surgeon and proper feeding are vital in maintaining your dog's health.

With proper nutrition, routine veterinary care, regular exercise and grooming your German Shepherd Dog should live approximately 10 to 13 years.

what size is a gsd?
Males - Height at withers 60-65cms approx. weight 30-40kg
Females - Height at withers 55-60cms approx. weight 22-32kg

what weight should my gsd be?

Weight for age Chart

can the breeder guarantee that the puppy will not have hip or elbow problems?
No breeder can guarantee that your puppy will not have hip or elbow problems. But a responsible breeder will guarantee that if there is a genetic problem with hips and/or elbows, they will replace the puppy or refund your money.

Most breeders require the owner to return the puppy for replacement. Do not be dismayed by the breeder requiring the return of the puppy. The puppy may be in a great deal of pain and the owner emotionally unable to deal with having to put the puppy to sleep. A responsible breeder will want what is best for the puppy/dog.


when will my puppy's ears stand up?
Some puppies'
ears  are erect as early as eight or ten weeks of age.
Do not be concerned if the pup's ears are not standing up until five months of age, especially if they are very large ears.
Ear carriage can be very erratic during the period when a puppy is getting its adult teeth.
Don't let anyone pet or pull your puppy's ears  backwards before they are erect. This can damage the cartilage in your pup's ears which can effect the ear carriage.
here for more information about ears.

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