German Shepherd (Alsatian) Breed Information and Buying advice

German Shepherd (Alsatian)

Are You Looking to Buy or Adopt a German Shepherd (Alsatian)?

Quick German Shepherd (Alsatian) Facts

Average Size of Adult
Large (4/5)
Puppy Puppy Puppy Puppy Puppy
Grooming Requirement
Medium (2/3)
Puppy Puppy Puppy
Medium (2/3)
Puppy Puppy Puppy
Average Life Span
10-12 years (4/8)
Exercise Requirements
High (3/3)
Puppy Puppy Puppy
High (3/3)
Puppy Puppy Puppy
High (3/3)
Puppy Puppy Puppy
Child friendly
Yes (1/2)
High (3/3)
Puppy Puppy Puppy
Breed Group
Pastoral (3/8)
No (2/2)

Why German Shepherds are great

The German Shepherd Dog is arguably the most popular breed in the world. Some highlights:

  • They are very intelligent

  • If given the correct handling, the German Shepherd can be trained to a high standard

  • Trustworthy and hardworking dogs

  • Very good around children

Things to consider when looking at German Shepherd Puppies for Sale

Like all breeds, there are some downsides to consider when searching for German Shepherds for Sale. They’re often noted as not being a good choice for a first time owner, so make sure you research sufficiently. Some downsides to the German Shepherd:

  • Not suited to people in apartments or small homes

  • Need lots of exercise and stimulation is needed

  • Be careful of hereditary health issues

History of German Shepherd

German Shepherds are coming from Germany, they were developed for use in military, police and search-and-rescue roles during World War I as guarding dogs. They were originally bred as herding dogs. Also called Alsatian wolf dog in the UK until 1977, they were first developed in 1899.  


The GSD has a wolf-like face and head, his ears are erect. His body is long and well muscled and his back is slightly curved with his hindquarters being lower than his front end.  

How big is the German Shepherd?

He stands up to 65cm at the shoulder and can weigh up to 40KG. He considered as a medium to large-sized dog. A loyal and intelligent breed the GSD has a life expectancy of up to 12 years old.    

How heavy is a German Shepherd?

German Shepherds can weigh up to 40KG.  

What Colour is the German Shepherd?

The GSD has a double coat which is long and can have various colours such as black, cream, white or black and tan.  


Thanks to this steady and firm temperament, the GSD is a popular dog. The breed has a high willingness to learn and is very curious about the surrounding environment, that's why they are suitable for rescue missions.

Do German Shepherds make good guard dogs?

GSDs are very good guard dogs as they are intelligent and very protective.  

Do German Shepherds bark a lot?

Their tendency to bark is low, which makes German Shepherds quiet dogs.  

Are German Shepherds good with children?

The GSD is suitable for many families with children, he will be the treasured pet and a protective with his owner.  

Are German Shepherds good with other pets?

German Shepherds are good with other pets as long as they are raised together. They can be sometimes nervous with other pets and guarding instincts   They are not inclined to become immediate friends with strangers

Can I leave a German Shepherd alone?

The shepherd needs a firm and consistent owner as he is an intelligent animal who needs to be kept occupied to prevent him from becoming bored and mischievous. He should not be left alone or with other pets and under constant supervision.  


How much exercise does a German Shepherd need?

The breed is very prone to hip dysplasia and care should be taken when choosing a puppy that parents have been hip scored.


How much space do I need for a German Shepherd?

GSDs requires daily exercise, according to Kennel Club, at least 2 hours of exercise per is ideal so they aren't bored.  

How much grooming do German Shepherds need?

The German Shepherd does not need a high-level of grooming. He has a long coat that is relatively easy to maintain with regular grooming.

Do German Shepherd shed?

Contrarily to what you can read online, the GSD sheds in a heavy way and lose his fur under the top coat twice a year. You will consequently need to vacuum a couple of times per week and remove lint from your clothes every day.  

Average costs


How much does it cost to keep a German Shepherd?

As a rough guide in pricing: Cost to buy: roughly £500-1200  for a well-bred German Shepherd puppy Other costs ( Vet, food etc): £100 to £150 per month  

Specific Buying Guide

You can read our general buying guide here (/advice-on-buying-a-puppy/), with the most important thing being going to view your German Shepherd Puppy, seeing it with its mother, and checking the quality of the breeder.

  • Stud dogs (the father) must be hip scored before used for breeding. Make sure you get this information from the breeder, because the German Shepherd can suffer with hereditary hip issues.

  • Being one of the most popular breeds in the UK, make sure your breeder isn't compromising the health of the litter. According the Kennel Club, a bitch should only produce 4 litters and be a certain age.

Other reading and Organisations

A big thank you to the following sources who helped to shape this article: