All About Old German Shepherd Dog

The Old German Shepherd dog breed is neither recognized by the FCI nor by the Verein für Deutsche Schäferhunde e. V. (SV) recognized. This pedigree dog has existed under this name since 1930 and was/is cared for by independent breeding clubs. It was not until 2010 that the SV recognized the “long-haired shepherd dog” again. With this decision, the SV has revised the exclusion of the long-haired shepherd dog from 1930, but without accepting the current breed designation (old German shepherd dog).

History of the “Old German Shepherd Dog”

Up until 1930, the history of the development of the “German Shepherd Dog” is identical to that of the “Old German Shepherd Dog”. Up to this point, the long-haired specimens were recognized by the FCI and the SV. The breeding exclusion of the long-haired shepherd dogs was the birth of the “Old German Shepherd Dog”. Friends of this type of dog did not agree with the decision of the SV and the founder Max Emil Friedrich von Stephanitz. They founded independent clubs and guaranteed the survival of the long-haired dogs. It was not until 2010 that the decision of the Association for German Shepherd Dogs e. V. withdrawn. The FCI supported this decision. The breed name Old German Shepherd Dog was not recognized. Independent breeders and breed clubs stick to this name.

Essence and Character

Typical of the character of the Old German Shepherd Dog is its loyalty and reliability. These two qualities together with his willingness to work make him the perfect working dog. He can live out this activity as a guard and protection dog or in dog sports. Due to its friendly and balanced nature, an Old German Shepherd is the ideal family dog. Its stimulus threshold is slightly higher than that of its relative, the German shepherd. He is good-natured, intelligent, playful, and alert. This combination makes it the perfect companion for older children.


The physique is the same as that of the German Shepherd Dog. What is special is his coat of hair. The long and soft coat has a lot of undercoats. He also has a strong fur collar (mane). The ears, legs, and tail have long fur called flags. The regular colors are black-beige and black-tan. An old German shepherd in gray and black are not uncommon. The size and weight of the Old German Shepherd Dog are comparable to the German Shepherd Dog. In part, he looks stronger because of the fur.

Purchase of an “Old German Shepherd Dog”

The purchase of an old German shepherd means a full-fledged sporting family member. You have to answer the following questions honestly:

  • Time (coordination dog and work)
  • Sports (are your sports activities compatible with the dog)
  • Vacation (long flights, accommodation, or vacation with dog)

Be honest. Does this dog fit into your lifestyle? A walk in the morning and evening is not enough. In addition, this intelligent dog becomes unhappy without a task. The life expectancy of the Old German Shepherd Dog is 12 years. During this time you should allow him a species-appropriate life. A busy Old German Shepherd Dog can also be left alone. This shouldn’t be permanent.

What Do I Need to Pay Attention to When Purchasing?

An Old German Shepherd Dog should always come from a recognized breeder. You can recognize a reputable breeder very quickly:

  • Personal conversation (posture, nutrition, care)
  • Presentation of the mother animal with the puppies in the familiar environment
  • Multiple visits by interested parties are possible or even desired
  • Delivery of the puppies only between the 8th and 10th week of life or later
  • Puppies have been dewormed, chipped, and have had their first vaccinations
  • Proof of veterinary examinations of the puppies is available
  • Parent dogs are free of HD, ED, and OCD
  • Breeder inquires about future living conditions
  • Prices can range from €850.00 to €1,500.00

With dubious sellers, the informational talks are kept short and repeated visits are not desired.

Puppy Development and Training

An Old German Shepherd puppy needs “dog sense” when it comes to training. This means this dog breed is unsuitable for beginners. Consistent education with age-appropriate activities is important for puppies and young dogs. Intelligence and high spirits must be guided in the right direction in a friendly and determined manner. A dog school or a puppy course is helpful. In addition to the normal “learning workload,” he has to practice dealing with other dogs. This socialization must be done as early as possible. If you fail to do this, the adult dog will have problems with other four-legged friends.

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