The German Shepherd is one of the most popular dog breeds. And they are especially well liked in the United States. Most commonly it is thought that these dogs only come in two colors — black and tan. In fact, we can spot German Shepherds in many different colors, but one of the rarest is the Blue German Shepherd. With the same temperament and characteristics of the standard German Shepherd, this breed is a relatively new addition to the GSD family.
If you’re interested in learning more about the Blue German Shepherd and their unique coloring, keep reading and find out below!
Origin of the Blue German Shepherd
The German Shepherd was originally bred to be a herding dog and could have been found on farms, but over the years they have shown themselves to be wonderful, helpful and stable working and family dogs.
There are a number of different color variations of the German Shepherd as we mentioned above. The Blue German Shepherd is one of the rarest variations and it is really difficult to know how and when they first appeared.
The Blue German Shepherd is not a mixed breed and it is simply a variation of the standard GSD. Therefore, these dogs carry the same characteristics and temperament of the standard GSD. However, they are much more rare and therefore their price on the market is higher.
The Blue German Shepherd Genetics
The Blue German Shepherd’s hue is essentially a diluted version of the typical Black Shepherd’s color. When referring to color variants, geneticists frequently use the phrase ‘diluted’ to reflect the ‘watered down’ color form. The dilution gene ‘Dd’ primarily affects coat color, but it can also change the color of eyes and noses.
A collection or group of genes that operate together controls all coat hues and patterns. The A genes, which control the black and red coloration of the dog through the release of melanin.
The coloration of the blue German Shepherd, on the other hand, is determined by a separate gene, the D gene mentioned earlier. It’s a gene that can be found in all German Shepherds. When the gene is active, it produces full color, and when it is inactive, it produces diluted color, similar to a ‘on and off’ switch. All genes arrive in pairs, and the blue German Shepherd is only produced when the big ‘D’ and little ‘d’ pair are present. The big D produces full strength coat color and is the dominant gene. The recessive gene, the tiny d, causes a diluted color.
The following gene combinations result in the blue German Shepherd, which is technically a dilute Black Shepherd:
- The “DD” (Black German Shepherd) is a traditional black German Shepherd.
- “Dd” is also a traditional Black German Shepherd.
- The “dd” is a Blue German Shepherd.
As a result, the Blue Shepherd requires two copies of the dilute gene to be generated. To achieve dilute fur, one from each parent is used. He’ll occasionally be bred specifically for his color, with two parents of the same hue. He will be born into a family of non-blue parents on a rare occasion. This only happens if they are both recessive gene carriers.
The Blue German Shepherd comes in three different shades of blue. They appear in a variety of colors, including blue and black, blue and sable, and blue and tan, all of which are determined by other genes.
The blue German Shepherd can also come in a variety of paler and deeper shades of blue. The heavier tint is steel blue, while the lighter shade is powder blue. It can be tough to detect a steel blue on his own. You can easily tell the difference in color between him and a black German Shepherd.
The AKC claims that the blue color is a serious genetic flaw. While they can still compete in activity events, they are rarely entered due to the preference for darker German Shepherds. Many owners of unfavorable-colored German Shepherds claim that despite being allowed to attend events, their dogs are subjected to color discrimination. Other comparable breeds, like as the GSD’s relative, the Belgian Malinois, will share the blue defect.
As we’ve mentioned above, the Blue German Shepherd is very similar to other German Shepherds. Basically, the main difference is the color of their fur. They are a large dog breed with a muscular and elegant frame. Males will weigh between 75 to 95 pounds and stand up to 26” tall. Females are always slightly smaller and will weigh anywhere between 55 to 73 pounds and stand no taller than 24”.
These dogs have a popular domed shape head with a long, square muzzle. They have long necks and erect ears, which sit low when running or prowling. They are a very strong breed and often are said to resemble their wolf ancestors.
If you didn’t know, the German Shepherds will have one of two coats — a medium coat or long coat. They are both double coats, having a more dense guard layer with a softer undercoat which helps to keep them warm in situations when they are out as working dogs which protect them for the impacts of the environment. .
Since they have dense fur, these dogs are known to shed so they may not be the pup for those with allergies.
As you can probably guess, the Blue German Shepherd’s coat is blue! However, the appearance of their coats actually makes them look a bit more gray or black than blue. Either way, their coat is what makes them stand out from other GSD.
Personality and temperament
The German Shepherd is known as an extremely loyal and very family orientated dog. Because they are working dogs, they will believe that their job is to protect you as a family and are known for being alert and watchful, sometimes barking if they feel like they are in danger.
But, on the other hand, these dogs are very playful and active and love to be outside getting physical exercise. They also need a lot of mental stimulation as they are very intelligent and do not like to be left alone. If they are left alone for long periods of time they can become bored and begin to exhibit destructive behaviors as a result of separation anxiety. Therefore, they are not the dog for you if you are out for hours everyday and have nobody to take care of him!
Are they good family dogs?
The Blue German Shepherd, like any other German Shepherd, is a wonderful family dog. They are wonderful security dogs or watchdogs because they are so devoted and will want to protect you from anything unpleasant. However, you must train them from an early age to recognize that not everything is a threat, or they would bark for hours!
This puppy, without a doubt, requires a lot of activity and would thrive in a household that is ready to spend time playing with them. They require both physical and mental activity, and a large yard in which to run around and someone willing to teach them tricks will be beneficial.
Because this breed has a naturally high prey drive, you should exercise caution when first introducing them to children. However, when properly socialized, German Shepherds adore youngsters and will even take them under their wing. They also get along nicely with other family pets, so there will be no problems and they will quickly become a beloved member of the family.
Health and life expectancy
The average life expectancy of a Blue German Shepherd is somewhere from 9 to 14 years.
The most common health concern for the German Shepherd dog breed is elbow dysplasia and hip dysplasia. Due to their large size, their joints can become very painful and become stiff over time.
Blue German Shepherds can also be prone to other health problems, due to the fact they are bred from a single bloodline. That means that they are also prone to some genetic mutations.
Unlike several other breeds, such as the French Bulldog, the color blue is not associated with health problems or personality flaws. The diluted gene has been connected to health difficulties in other breeds, such as Color Dilution Alopecia in Weimaraner dogs, however the blue German Shepherd has never been reported to have any diluted color-related health issues.
Simply defined, the blue German Shepherd is a color variation of the standard coloured German Shepherd, and their health is identical to that of a traditional coloured German Shepherd.
If you’re thinking about getting a puppy, the National Breed Club for German Shepherds recommends that both parents be tested for Elbow and Hip Dysplasia and have a “Fair” result. Elbow and Hip Dysplasia is a condition in which the elbow and hip joints develop abnormally.
It is more common in dogs of larger breeds. This formation can cause pain in their joints over time, and in older dogs, it can sometimes lead to debilitating arthritis.
Grooming a Blue German Shepherd
Because the German Shepherd has a double coat, so it sheds a lot. They will shed more twice a year, but they will still shed moderately the rest of the year, therefore they are not the dog for allergy sufferers!
Brushing the Blue GSD regularly will reduce the amount of hair they shed. You may also take your dog to a grooming establishment to assist control his or her coat.
You might be able to get away with brushing your Blue German Shepherd dog twice a week if you’re lucky and have a medium-coated dog. If your dog has long hair, though, you’ll need to brush them on a daily basis to avoid knots and tangles.
The GSD does not require bathing on a regular basis. Bathing can strip the oil from their coats, eliminate luster, and dry up their skin, thus it should only be done every three to four months or when they are in desperate need!
To get your Blue Shepherd’s nails cut, take them to a groomer. Remember to brush their teeth to avoid tooth decay and gum disease, though dental chews can be given to them every day to help keep their teeth clean.
Check their upright ears as well, as they are more likely to pick up dust and debris. You can clean their ears with cotton balls and a cleaning solution from time to time.
Adult German Shepherds require approximately 1200 calories per day, assuming they are not working out the entire day. Dogs who are always on the move will require more calories.
However, because they are prone to bloating, you should feed them at least twice a day. Instead, distribute 3–4 cups of kibble throughout the day.
They should be fed three to four times a day as puppies. This is especially critical in larger breeds since they are more prone to bloat, a condition in which the stomach becomes swollen and twisted and is usually fatal.
As an adult, these three to four meals can be reduced to two per day. If you have a hectic lifestyle, this can be reduced to one meal each day.
The kibble you feed your dog should not only match their caloric needs, but also their nutritional needs depending on their stage.
To keep up with their high energy levels, these dogs need a lot of protein and a little carbohydrate.
They can also have sensitive stomachs, so you’ll want to pick a formula that’s right for them. If they have the runs on a regular basis, you might want to try a new brand.
Their food should be nutritious and wholesome. It should include all of the nutrients required by a dog of this size, such as proteins, lipids, and carbohydrates.
Although some dog owners choose to offer their pooch raw food, high-quality dry kibble is a terrific option. If you do decide to feed them kibble, make sure it’s a diet designed specifically for large dog breeds.
Exercise of the Blue German Shepherd
The German Shepherd, being a traditional working dog, need a lot of mental and physical activity to stay happy, hence their exercise requirements are high.
You should make sure your German Shepherd gets 60 to 90 minutes of exercise every day. This involves going for walks, playing games, and thinking about them. Your dog will also desire a large back yard to run around in, so if you live in a small apartment, they will not get the exercise they want. They may develop undesired and destructive habits as a result of irritation and boredom if they do not get enough exercise.
These dogs enjoy going on hikes and walks with their owners, as well as swimming, so make sure you have the time to spend with them outside before purchasing this breed. They could be the ideal exercise partner!
Because this is a huge breed, you should be careful not to overwork these puppies when they are young. Exercising too much can be harmful to their bone development. You should only exercise them for 5 minutes per month of their age until they are an adult, as a rule of thumb. If your GSD is four months old, for example, you should train them for twenty minutes.
The German Shepherd is a very intelligent dog with excellent training abilities. Positive reinforcement and reward-based training work best for them, as it does for all dogs. This includes both verbal and physical rewards.
Because German Shepherds are tenacious, you should never chastise or scold them. This may make training a terrible experience for them, and they will refuse to learn.
Blue German Shepherds will also perform much better if you give them plenty of time to exercise before starting a training session. They’re also excellent investigators, so concealing treats and having them sniff them out is a fun game to play!
You’ll want to make sure you’re training your GSD properly, especially if you want to use a harness. They are working dogs, and if they are not properly taught, they will pull. Crate training is the same way — make sure you have the right size crate.
Socializing a Blue German Shepherd
It is critical to socialize your Blue German Shepherd. This is primarily due to the fact that they are working dogs who believe it is their mission to guard you. Because of their hunting drive, they might appear aloof with children.
From a young age, you should introduce your German Shepherd to new sights, noises, places, smells, people, and animals in a calm and controlled manner so that they learn there is nothing to fear. Continuing to socialize them throughout their lives will also help them grow into a well-rounded canine.
How much is a Blue German Shepherd puppy?
A blue German Shepherd will cost no more than a standard GSD if purchased from a reputable breeder. This can cost anywhere from $1200 to $1500. Because their color is more uncommon, you may have to pay a somewhat greater premium for this breed’s color.
These dogs are less common than their tan and black saddle brothers, and few breeders strive for this distinct color. This makes it tough to locate one to purchase. German Shepherds are larger dogs, and their litters can be quite enormous. A blue German Shepherd puppy may appear unexpectedly in a litter with an average of eight puppies.
Blue German Shepherd puppies are normally born in litter sizes of between 1 and 15 puppies. Unfortunately, it could be difficult to find a breeder. Most of the breeders out there choose to breed the standard black and tan GSD instead of the blue ones.
Adult German Shepherds with a verified show pedigree can fetch anywhere from $7,000 to $9,000 USD. The American Kennel Club (AKC) maintains a registry of AKC accredited breeders, making it easy to locate a reputable breeder in your area. If you choose to adopt, the German Shepherd Club of America maintains a database of available rescues and rescue centers across the United States.
Choosing a breeder
If you’re looking for a specific color or breed, you want to be sure you’re buying from the best.
Reputable breeders are passionate about their pets as well as the breed as a whole. They should have a well-rounded breeding program that includes not only color but also disposition.
You should also expect the breeders to conduct a thorough examination of you. They may inquire about your reasons for wanting a dog, as well as your lifestyle.
Take it as a sign to look for another kennel if they seem suspicious in any manner. Also, stay away from kennels who downplay their dogs’ pedigrees.
Some breeders of Blue German Shepherds do mix their dogs with other breeds.
To obtain their lupine traits, Blue Bay Shepherds began by crossing German Shepherds with wolfdogs. Always conduct thorough investigation!
Aside from the color, there isn’t much difference between a blue German Shepherd and a conventional colored German Shepherd. He’s of the same breed, but he’s a different hue. Blue German Shepherds are popular family pets despite being considered a problematic hue. Because they are rare, you can expect to pay a little extra for a puppy. Don’t be surprised if you’re required to join a waiting list.
If you want a show or performance your German Shepherd, however, you should buy a darker or more conventional colored German Shepherd. Otherwise, you should stick to your favorite color. In comparison to the classic German Shepherd hue, they have no other distinguishing characteristics.
The German Shepherd is a popular family pet all around the world, and the blue German Shepherd is no exception. They are known to be extremely affectionate towards their personal family and enjoy cuddling on the couch. Because the German Shepherd is renowned as a ‘one-man dog,’ this is especially true of his master or the person he perceives as his primary carer.
The blue German Shepherd is recognized for his self-assurance and bravery. His protective instincts can be put to good use in the household if he is properly trained and socialized. Even if they are invited onto the estate, he might be aloof with strangers or outsiders of the pack. However, after newcomers have been authorized, he is just as loyal and loving to them as they are to his own pack.