How do I pick a German shepherd puppy from a litter? Here’s What to Expect

Call the breeder and have a conversation

The first thing to do is call the breeder and have a conversation. A quality German Shepherd breeder will actually require this. They will not permit someone to just show up and purchase one of their dogs and take it home.

Questions for you to ask the breeder:

  • How many different types of dogs do you raise? If it’s more than one breed, you should likely stay away.
  • Can I meet the puppies’ parents? The breeder should allow you full access to the puppies’ parents.
  • Can you provide me with a pedigree of all of your puppies? A pedigree is essentially a family tree for your puppy. A good breeder should have a detailed pedigree for any dog they sell. Beware of any breeder that wants to charge for this or says that they will provide it at a later date.
  • Do you have references? They should provide you with several without thinking twice.
  • Do you guarantee your puppies’ health? All reputable breeders will offer this guarantee in the form of a written contract.
  • Do you breed your females more than once a year? Female GSDs should not be bred more than one time per year. This allows for adequate recovery time and maintains good health.
  • Can you provide me with a detailed medical history for your puppies? Health screenings are essential for puppies, and a reputable breeder should be able to provide proof of these.
  • Can you explain any potential health issues for GSD which may come up later in life? A knowledgable breeder should be able to clearly explain conditions like hip dysplasia and other health issues more common in GSDs than other dogs.
  • If the answer to any of these questions comes up as unsatisfactory, move on. It is simply not worth the risk of pursuing the breeder any further.

    Unfortunately, there are far too many unethical breeders who take a lot of shortcuts which results in dogs prone to both health and behavioral issues.

    Male German Shepherds

    Male dogs will tend to be much larger than females. They are also more muscular.

    Males will display a lot more dominance than females. This can cause them to display bullying behaviors in an attempt to show who’s the boss.

    It will be important to keep them well trained so that they know you’re their master, not the other way around.

    A male German Shepherd is more likely to bond very closely with a single person instead of a whole family.

    A male German Shepherd is more likely to be territorial. This means they could be more likely to wander off in an attempt to expand their home turf.

    These males tend to be on the more possessive side than their female counterparts. This could be over their food, their favorite toys, or even you.

    It will be important to give them correct training to teach them not to be aggressive towards you.

    How To Choose The Right German Shepherd Puppy From A Litter

    No field day compares to that wonderful time when you go to buy a dog! Of course, you have already read a lot of books with advice on how to choose the right puppy of a German Shepherd, east European, as well as a Newfoundland, Rottweiler, Spaniel, or Spitz puppy.

    You understand what is the fundamental difference between these breeds and why a Retriever puppy will never become a VIP bodyguard, and a black terrier will hardly ever pass for a draft husky.