About White Shepherds

History | Breed Standard | Myths | Health | In Competitions | As Companions


The founding dog of the GSD breed – Horand Von Grafrath, SZ1’s maternal grandfather – was a white German sheepdog born around 1879. Horand was bred to 35 different bitches, producing 53 litters of which 140 progeny were registered with the SV. He was also mated three times with his daughters, thus fixing the genetic code into the development of this breed. This genetic code was handed down through his progeny and thus remains with us today.

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Breed Standard

General Appearance

The white shepherd is a medium-sized, well-balanced, muscular dog, slightly longer than tall, with a medium length, pure white coat, erect ears, and a low-set natural tail that normally reaches to the hock and is carried in a slight curve like a saber. The outline of the white shepherd is made up of smooth curves rather than angles. Gender differences are readily apparent.

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Conformation Shows

A conformation show, also referred to as a breed show, is a kind of dog show in which a judge evaluates individual purebred dogs for how well the dogs conform to the established breed standard for their breed.

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A long time ago, it was thought that shepherds of white coat color were albinos. white shepherds are not albinos, but instead have a gene pattern that indicates a lack of pigment in the coat, but not the skin or eyes. white shepherds have dark eyes, and also pigment on the skin. There is no link to deafness in the white shepherd due to coat color either, as that trait is linked to albinism.

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As a breed, the white shepherd is a very healthy and athletic dog. Our members are to use conservative breeding practices and are encouraged to test for any genetic anomalies in order to make the best decisions in planning a breeding. Health and temperament are to be held at as high of standards as that of conformation.

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In Competitions

Conformation Competitions

White shepherds can compete in conformation competition in the USA through the United Kennel Club. We have a list of various members’ wins in Top Ten and Specialty competitions.

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Performance Events

White shepherds compete in several performance events throughout the UKC: agility, obedience, lure coursing, weight pull, and dock diving. We have a list of many of the various winners and title holders in these types of performance events.

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As Companions

White shepherds are a breed that, to us, define the epitome of man’s best friend. Shepherds are known for their tight bonds with their people pack, and their protective nature serves to intensify these tight relationships with their pack. They strive to please in any way possible, are great problem solvers, and have an intuitive nature about them when it comes to their animal and people packs.

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