is owned by Pauline.
Graphic Created By Babycass.
Note From The
Lately, many people are writing to me and inquiring about
where to get a long haired German Shepherd. However, I do not feel comfortable
recommending many breeders other than some local ones that I know of. Helping people
across the country (USA) find a long haired German Shepherd is not always easy for me to
Please see the Choosing A Breeder page on this site. I
personally recommend going to a breeder that completes all health screenings, and has
working titles on their dogs as well as conformation titles. Breeders such as this
are *usually* breeding to better the breed and not to make a quick $$$ on selling
"rare" varieties etc. Often, these breeders are not breeding for the
long coated German Shepherd but they may have occasional coats in litters.
If you are in Europe, there is a German
organization that does breed for coats AND has to follow the strict regulations much like
the SV. They must prove that their dogs have proper conformation and working
ability. Their website is here for more information.
This is not to say that all breeders that do not show or work their dogs are
"bad" or that all breeders who DO are good. One must be
responsible in making their own judgement on a breeder and doing their individual
homework. Lastly, do not forget RESCUE, RESCUE,
not "correct" by the German Shepherd Standard(s), the long coated German
Shepherd is a beautiful dog to behold. Because they cannot be shown in conformation
at SV regulated shows (as well as AKC etc.), many make wonderful working dogs in SAR,
assistance work, and police work.
Some owners say that the Long Haired
German Shepherd's personality is also different than the normal coated dog: sweeter or
more comical! (Sometimes, I wonder if that is due to all of the hugging the
irresistable fluff balls must receive during puppyhood!)
Owners of this variety of German Shepherd Dog are usually staunch supporters of
their long hair German Shepherds and are very proud of these beautiful companions.
A Long Haired
German Shepherd is sometimes called a "coat".
There are only the three coat types:
normal stock hair, long stock hair, long hair. There is a range of coat lengths and
fullnesses in the normal stock hair category.
* The normal stock hair German Shepherd Dog
has an outer coat that should be as thick as
possible. The individual hairs are straight, coarse and lying flat against the body. The
coat is short on the head inclusive of the ears, the front of the legs, the feet and the
toes but longer and thicker on the neck. The hair grows longer on the back of the fore and
hind legs as far down as the pastern and the hock joint, forming moderate breeching on the
thighs. The length of the hair varies, and due to these differences in length, there are
many intermediate forms. However, a too short or molelike coat is faulty.
* The long stock hair coated German
individual hairs are longer, not always straight and above all not lying close to the
body. The coat is considerably longer inside and behind the ears, on the back of the
forearm and usually in the loin area. now and then there will be tufts in the ears and
feathering from elbow to pastern. The breeching along the thigh is long and thick. The
tail is bushy with slight feathering underneath. This coat type is not as weatherproof as
the normal stock hair and is therefore undesirable. However, provided there is
sufficient undercoat, it may be passed for breeding, as long as the breed regulations of
the country allow it.
* The long haired German Shepherd Dog's coat is considerably longer than that of the long
stock hair. It is generally very soft and forms a parting along the back. The
undercoat will be found in the region of the loins or will not be present at all. A long
coat is greatly diminished in weatherproofing and utility and therefore is undesirable
(per the breed standard).
The important distinction between the
correct and incorrect coats (per the German Shepherd standard) is not just hair length,
but the pattern of hair growth. The incorrect coats (long hair, long stock hair) have the
bushy tufts behind the ears, the big fluffy pantaloons and big bushy round tail, and long
fringes along the backs of the legs, and longer hair between the toes. A puppy can
often be identified as a Longhaired German Shepherd Dog if it possesses ear fringe or
Often, owners wonder why the coated
German Shepherd is considered a fault. It has been thought that this was due to the
fact that long hair German Shepherds sometimes lack the undercoat of a normal coated
GSD. The undercoat was beneficial in helping the GSD withstand the elements during
sheep herding in Germany's climate. A dog that is a long stock hair DOES
have an undercoat. However, a true long coat (soft and silky like a Flat Coated
Retriever) does not have an undercoat and has always been a disqualification.
Whereas, the long stock coat was not a disqualification until recent years. They
would be graded with a Koerklasse 2 but were still showable and breedable. Now,
they are also disqualified by the SV from being breed surveyed.
Also, it is a fable that Long Haired
GSDs "smell" more than normal coated GSDs, or even shed more. A normal,
healthy long haired German Shepherd will smell just as wonderful as a standard coated GSD.
Usually, a dog that smells has skin problems or is unhealthy. It has nothing
to do with the length of coat. Of course, both types can smell if they are allowed
to roll in "certain" things or to become too dirty! Also, many owners of
both long haired German Shepherds and normal coated German Shepherds (including me) say
that their shorter coated dog sheds MORE. However, there is one
note to consider. If you plan to use your coated GSD for work (or play) in fields,
forests etc., be aware that they will take longer to groom afterwards. Burrs, dirt,
and foxtails are picked up more easily by the longer coat than the normal stock hair.