Need a guard, herding or family dog? You may want to consider the German Shepherd Dog. This breed is one of the American Kennel Club's most often registered, and so is considered one of the most popular dogs in the United States. The American Kennel Club recognized the German Shepherd Dog as a breed within the herding group in 1908.
The German Shepherd Dog is quiet but never nervous, anxious or shy around people. Instead, dogs of the breed should be slightly aloof, alert and self-confident enough to allow the approach of strangers without being aggressive.
Male German Shepherds should stand between 24 and 26 inches tall at the top of the shoulders, while female German shepherd dogs are between 22 and 24 inches tall. The dog's height should be less than the dog's length from chest to the back of the dog's hindquarter.
Head and Neck
The head must be proportionate to the rest of the body. A German Shepherd Dog's eyes should be dark, and the nose should be mostly black no matter the body color. The ears stand erect with no folding. The neck should be proportionately long. The head is carried up when excited and level when calm.
A German Shepherd should not have a delicate body structure. The top of the shoulder, the withers, are taller than the area above the hips. The back should not have a dip. The ribcage is very large to allow for larger lung capacity. The German Shepherd Dog should have a bushy tail that is carried low with a slight curve up.
A German Shepherd Dog's natural coat is a double coat with a harsh outer coat that is allowed to have a slight wave. Shorter hair is found on the head, legs and feet, while the neck and backs of the legs and hindquarters may have longer hair.
A German Shepherd may be any color except for white, though all shades of blue and liver are not preferred. Even if the dog is of a preferred color, the dog still may incur faults when showing if the coat color seems pale.
You are looking for a trot in a German Shepherd Dog, which is a gait where the legs hit the ground close together in almost single file. The feet move in diagonal pairs. For example, the front left and right hind will move together. The length of the dog's steps should stretch over a lot of ground.