The all black German Shepherd Dog is a beautiful color variant of the Standard German Shepherd Dog. This color deviation occurs naturally and therefore fits into the breed standard. This means that the American Kennel Club and other kennel clubs accept and allow the black German Shepherd.
The German Shepherd belongs to the most popular dog breeds in the world, and they are among the most loved dog breeds in the United States as well. But is there a difference between the classic-looking GSD and the black GSD?
Well, black GSDs are very similar to the standard Shepherds in most aspects. But some certain exceptions and factors distinguish the two, and we will talk more about those differences in this article.
History of German Shepherds
The German Shepherd dog breed dates back to the late 1800s when it was first developed in Germany. The first German Shepherds are the result of crossbreeding the most intelligent, responsive, and obedient local shepherd dogs in Germany. Sheep were herded by this breed, which was also responsible for defending the herds from predators.
German Shepherds today are superb family pets, watchdogs, and buddies because of their many exceptional traits. But this was not always the case.
These animals were not viewed as pets or companions, but rather as farmworkers. They were an ideal choice for sheep herding due to their combination of intelligence, speed, power, and an acute sense of smell. Farmers fed, protected, and housed German Shepherds despite the breed’s reputation as purely a working dog rather than a domestic pet.
The German Shepherd was a popular dog in Germany by the start of World War I and swiftly spread to other countries. German Shepherds were adored for their loyalty and tenacity.
This is due in part to the German Shepherd’s reputation for being a courageous and easy-to-train breed. Having a keen sense of smell and a fearless personality, the German Shepherd was the perfect police dog. As a result of their perseverance and dedication to what is going on around them, they have earned the role of leader to the blind.
Loyal, intelligent, and loving
If you ask German Shepherd dog owners to describe their four-legged friends, they will probably use words like loyal, intelligent, loving, and fearless. And they truly are all of that and more! They are companions who will protect you and your family with their lives.
The breed is first wary of strangers but quickly warms to them. They are wonderful watchdogs, especially for children, because of this. You should socialize them while they are young and take them for long walks or runs throughout their entire lives.
But, let’s talk more about the black color in German Shepherds.
The black coloration is the result of a genetic mutation. Just like how many rare color deviations occur in dogs.
It can happen randomly when two standard shepherds breed – it is determined by a recessionary black gene that may not appear in parents. When two black shepherds breed, the puppies always have the black color, as both have the recessive gene.
This version of the dog often has a straight back that is much healthier, as German shepherd dogs are predisposed to hip dysplasia.
German Shepherds are large dogs. The breed standard height at the withers is 24 to 26 inches for males and 22 to 24 inches for females. When it comes to all black German Shepherd dogs, they are usually one to two inches larger than the standard variety but should remain in proportion. In general, they should be about 22 to 26 inches in size. All black German Shepherd males are slightly larger than the females. But this is typically the case in the canine world.
When it comes to their weight, they have a fairly large weight range between 50 and 90 pounds. Here, too, females are often at the bottom of the scales. These dogs have sturdy bodies and long necks. The ears of all German Shepherds are generally upright; nevertheless, drooping ears are occasionally encountered in older dogs.
Now, let’s talk about what distinguishes these dogs. It is of course their beautiful fur color of pure black.
Black coat color
One question about black GSDs that gets asked a lot is whether these dogs change colors and if they have white markings.
Well, real all-black German shepherd dogs are born black as puppies and never change. Some puppies can be born black, and their fur can get tan later in life. If you are planning to buy a puppy from a breeder where both parents are not black, you may want to wait until the puppy is 10 weeks old to ensure that his fur does not change.
As for the white markings, some black Shepherds can have patches of white or brown on their paws, legs, or chest. We’ve mentioned this before, but it doesn’t hurt to repeat it one more time, the AKC, and other kennel clubs do accept these black dogs as purebreds.
Where does the black coat color come from?
Contrary to popular belief, the black coat color is not the result of crossbreeding. It is simply a rare color that only a small percentage of German Shepherds are born with. It is a relatively new phenomenon that is sometimes supported by selective breeding procedures.
While the gene for a solid black coat was formerly thought to be recessive, many scientists now believe it is dominant. It’s not because it’s “covered” by other genes; rather, it’s just not present in a vast proportion of dogs.
These canines’ eyes are always a dark brown color. Blue eyes in dogs are extremely rare and are usually an indication that the dog has ancestors from other breeds, such as Huskies, in his pedigree.
Aside from the color, the body of a black German Shepherd is nearly identical to that of his black and tan colleagues. We also need to point out that the black coat color has no negative effect on the dog.
Personality and temperament of the Black German Shepherd
This is above all a self-confident, fearlessly loyal dog who only wants to be with you and protect you.
These amazing dogs were used for pretty much everything. Many people simply have them as companion animals and are characterized by them. Due to their quiet nature and easy training ability, they are also ideal as assistance dogs for the disabled. Thanks to their built-in urge to protect, they are brilliant guard dogs.
Don’t expect these dogs to just work, and never play. These dogs can be the perfect play companion for older children and adults.
High energy and intelligence make these dogs very easy to train, but also means that you can spend a lot of time employing your big brain.
They can easily get bored if they don’t have the opportunity to use their energy or mind.
Fear of separation can also be a problem for them, as their main desire in life is to be with you.
If they have nothing to do for a long time, they can be stressed and develop destructive habits and barking.
Due to their protective nature, they can sometimes be careful with strangers, so it is important to introduce them to many people when they are a puppy.
These canines are very friendly dogs, but they are not overly desperate to make friends. If you are thinking of adopting a Black German Shepherd, you should be slow when you meet new people so that you do not burden them.
They are generally good with other dogs and animals, but here, too, socialization at a young age is the key to a dog-friendly puppy.
How to train an all black German Shepherd
Positive reinforcement is the best approach to training every dog. This means rewarding the right behavior with treats, toys, and positive rewards.
The all-black German Shepherd is a wonderful dog to train – they are intelligent, attentive, and excited to learn new things.
Socialization is a very important part of the training of a young dog. In this race, socialization with many people and environments should be your main focus.
You should introduce them to everyone, including children and everything else, other dogs and animals. This will help them not to be excessively careful with people with age. If you want to use your German shepherd as a herding dog, he must have contact with larger farm animals.
A lot of mental stimulation is required to keep your dog busy. Training sessions are great for this, but sometimes your dog has to deal with it for a while. Interactive feeders and puzzle toys will be your best friend here.
Care and health of the black German Shepherd
Puppies are often fed 3 to 4 small meals a day, as this prevents inflating in their smaller stomachs. They also have a higher calorie intake than adult dogs when they grow.
The diet you give your all-black German Shepherd changes depending on age.
Once your dog is 9 months old, he can take 2 meals a day and after one year he can switch to adult food.
In general, dogs receive a mixture of high-quality dry and wet food. As an adult, your dog needs about 20 calories per pound. The most important part of his diet is protein and this should make up 25% of their diet.
The big health problem known to affect German shepherd dogs is hip dysplasia and elbow dysplasia. Black German shepherd dogs often have a more straight back than the standard GSD. This reduces the risk of hip dysplasia, but they are still very susceptible. These dogs can also suffer from degenerative myelopathy.
The average lifespan of an all-black German Shepherd dog is about 9 to 13 years old – this is a great age for a larger breed of dog.
As beautiful as the black coats of these dogs are, they still shed like a normal Shepherd.
The double coat means that they shed all the time, but above all, during the shed season. The shed season is spring and autumn. Then the old hair falls out to make room for new growth. During these seasons, you can expect to vacuum constantly.
If your dog has a medium-length coat, it should be enough to brush it twice a week for his fur to look healthy. If the coat is longer, you may want to brush more often to avoid matting.
It is a good idea to have your dog professionally cared for 2-3 times a year, especially during this shed season.
What dog food to pick for your Black German Shepherd?
When it comes to growth and dietary needs, not all dog breeds are the same. Every breed has unique qualities that set it apart from the others. As a result, selecting a dog food that is matched to your pet’s nutritional needs is crucial. You should feed your pet dog a specific diet prepared just for him.
When buying food for your German Shepherd look for a high-quality protein as the first ingredient. Some of the tastiest foods start with a carbohydrate, but the good ones start with a protein component.
Avoid feeding meat meals that contain unneeded and potentially harmful additives, such as artificial colors and flavors, to breeds prone to food allergies and intolerances, such as German Shepherds.
Contrary to popular belief, meat meals are not inherently unhealthy. Many elements in meat dishes are healthful for your dog, even though they are nasty to us. But avoid items that don’t mention the species from which the meal came.
Additional diet tips
Food allergies are common in German shepherds, so it’s a good idea to steer clear of common allergens like corn, wheat, poultry, and beef.
Glucosamine and chondroitin, which are included in chondroitin and glucosamine supplements, may help treat or prevent osteoarthritis in this breed.
Supplementing your German shepherd’s diet with omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids is essential as well. Joint and coat health, as well as reduced inflammatory reactions, are all thought to be supported by these supplements.
German shepherds can be soothed and their digestive systems improved by probiotic-rich meals. Particularly important in light of the breed’s tendency for digestive issues.
Feed your dog food that he or she appears to digest adequately to help reduce further digestive troubles. It’s impossible to tell how particular foods may affect your dog until you give them a try yourself. In the beginning, it’s best to start with foods that most dogs can easily digest, like lamb and rice.
To prevent bloat in German Shepherds, you should train your dog to chew his meal slowly rather than gulp it down. It is useful to know that larger kibble pieces are more likely to be chewed by your dog, so examine the sizes of several alternatives when making your choice.
How much does an all black GSDS cost?
A black German shepherd dog costs you more than a normal German shepherd dog, as it is a rarer color variant. Basically, because of their rare coat color, they are more in demand and cost more money. This is common with many breeds.
The price range for healthy purebred German Shepherds is between $800 to upwards of $2000. This is if you want a high-quality German Shepherd puppy of any coat color. We would not recommend buying black German Shepherd puppies (or any other coat color) that are cheaper, as they may have health issues. Always buy your puppy from a qualified breeder, and never trust backyard breeders. Especially when you want to buy a solid black German Shepherd.
Lastly, these dogs make excellent family dogs. They love to be in their family and will protect them with their lives. You can be sure that your children are safe at home with their amazing dogs. To teach them the right behavior toward children, they must be socialized at a young age. It is also always a good idea to teach your children the right behavior towards dogs. Just like any other GSD, the all-black German Shepherd is a great service dog and working dog.
Conclusion – Black German Shepherd
German Shepherds make amazing pets and can be a great choice for families. No matter which coat color you prefer, you will get the same overall package – a kind, protective dog that will guard you and your family.
But, just as it always is with pets, there are things you need to take into consideration beforehand. For example the price of the animal, their personality and trainability, as well as their health.
When it comes to German Shepherds, they aren´t aggressive dogs, but they can be if you don´t train them well. They need a lot of training and exercise every day to stay happy and calm.
Another important point is that you should always get your dog from a reputable breeder, especially if you want a black puppy. A sketchy breeder might sell you a puppy that isn´t truly black and their coat color might change with time. A sure way to avoid getting scammed this way is to get your puppy when they are around 10 weeks old.