WGSD prejudice - my dog is a GSD too - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 72 (permalink) Old 01-31-2017, 10:24 AM Thread Starter
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Thumbs down WGSD prejudice - my dog is a GSD too

I'm really tired of people trying to tell me my dog is a "mutt" or calling her a "halfbreed" or basically just saying she isn't a GSD altogether. Last night at obedience class with Ghost I had yet another encounter with this. A woman approched me and asked me "what kind of dog is that?" Now I've been asked this just about everywhere I've gone with Ghost, and I know the WGSD is much less common and many people aren't even aware WGSD exist. So I answer the woman, "she's a white German Shepherd", and she sortof half laughed - half scoffed and said "so not a REAL German Shepherd then"... I asked the woman what would make her say that and told her that Ghost was as real as any other GSD, she and both her parents are registered, and she came from a reputable breeder. The woman just looked at me like I was from outer space and answered with "the white coat - she's obviously mixed and not full bred GSD". :FACEPALM:

This is the about the 3rd or 4th time this has happened. And I find it so irritating that people who try to tell me she "isn't real" or whatever act like they need to quietly whisper to me that my dog is a mutt so I won't be embarrased??? Or treat me with kid gloves - like I'm obviously the idiot for not knowing this and they are the know-it-alls of the dog world. And I end up getting defensive about Ghost and get the look from the offender making the comment like, "Oh, you poor thing, you didn't realize and spent money to buy her anyway"....

I just had to vent. Thanks for anyone who listened. I'm just tired of this happening and this particular instance the woman was rude and it honestly hurt my feelings. My dog IS a GSD too, dammit. And even if she wasn't, I'd love her just the same.

Ghost - our first WGSD, parvo survivor, 9/30/16
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post #2 of 72 (permalink) Old 01-31-2017, 10:36 AM
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You're not alone, if it helps any. I hear the same thing about my long coat. One guy even told me there is no such thing as a long coat GSD. Of course, he didn't have a german shepherd, but he knew all about them anyway. I guess ya' just have to find the comedy in it.
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post #3 of 72 (permalink) Old 01-31-2017, 10:40 AM
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Oh. I read WGSD and thought WGSD stood for Workingline GSD . I thought whats the problem. Many working lines dogs are very dark. Then I saw your avatar. Has she got a pink nose? That might be throwing people off.
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post #4 of 72 (permalink) Old 01-31-2017, 10:47 AM
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Oh, you ought to see what happens to owners of black GSDs! They tend to go through life hearing how pretty their Lab mix is. It's bad enough that we often have to post in rescue listings for all-black dogs that all-black is a normal coat color in GSDs.

I've got so many South Louisiana GSD shelter stories about coat colors, Lala. The worst one was the SABLE GSD who was listed by ignorant shelter staff as a wolf-hybrid -- a death sentence. I had to get a vet involved to get the poor dog out of that nonsense.

There are an awful lot of people who think all GSDs look like black-and-tan saddlebacks.

The way I would handle it in the Deep South is to preface the response with "Bless your heart..." before educating them about the variety of coat colors in the breed. Or just look them in the eye and use that phrase without educating them at all. They know what "bless your heart" means down here. I know you do too.
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Last edited by Magwart; 01-31-2017 at 10:53 AM.
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post #5 of 72 (permalink) Old 01-31-2017, 10:56 AM
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I like the fact that would be burglars instantly recognize my dog is a German Shepherd
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post #6 of 72 (permalink) Old 01-31-2017, 11:04 AM
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I always get that question too. Levi is registered as a White Shepherd through the UKC, and as a white GSD in the AKC. I used to say that he is a white shepherd, but that usually results in blank stares, so now I say that he's a white German shepherd. Usually then, I get nods and smiles. Though it seems there is still a stigma against white shepherds, especially among some GSD fanciers, no one has been condescending or rude to me or Levi in person. If it comes down to it, I am perfectly willing to consider Levi a different breed if that makes folks happy. He is both very similar to and somewhat different than other "traditional" GSDs I have known. He's a wonderful dog, and I am grateful that there are good and responsible white shepherd breeders out there.

(To be fair, a GSD of any color other than black-and-tan is likely to confuse the general public. When I had a sable working line GSD, one of our veterinary offices listed him as a GSD-mix in their records. Now, I don't care if the general public thinks I have a mix. I love mixes. But I would like to think that the veterinary staff would be experienced enough to know that GSDs come in different colors.)
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post #7 of 72 (permalink) Old 01-31-2017, 11:05 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nurse Bishop View Post
Oh. I read WGSD and thought WGSD stood for Workingline GSD . I thought whats the problem. Many working lines dogs are very dark. Then I saw your avatar. Has she got a pink nose? That might be throwing people off.
Her nose is black.
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Ghost - our first WGSD, parvo survivor, 9/30/16
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post #8 of 72 (permalink) Old 01-31-2017, 11:12 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Magwart View Post
Oh, you ought to see what happens to owners of black GSDs! They tend to go through life hearing how pretty their Lab mix is. It's bad enough that we often have to post in rescue listings for all-black dogs that all-black is a normal coat color in GSDs.

I've got so many South Louisiana GSD shelter stories about coat colors, Lala. The worst one was the SABLE GSD who was listed by ignorant shelter staff as a wolf-hybrid -- a death sentence. I had to get a vet involved to get the poor dog out of that nonsense.

There are an awful lot of people who think all GSDs look like black-and-tan saddlebacks.

The way I would handle it in the Deep South is to preface the response with "Bless your heart..." before educating them about the variety of coat colors in the breed. Or just look them in the eye and use that phrase without educating them at all. They know what "bless your heart" means down here. I know you do too.
LOL that's the truth, Mag. Thank you. Normally I'm way more thick-skinned but it just hurt my feelings when I know it shouldn't. I can't help the fact that there will be some ignorant people out there who don't know a thing about or have never seen a WGSD. Bless their hearts, indeed.

Ghost - our first WGSD, parvo survivor, 9/30/16
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post #9 of 72 (permalink) Old 01-31-2017, 11:13 AM
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Maybe you should print off a gsd color page and keep it on you. Or bookmark a page on your phone. That way when people start in you can give them the paper or screen to look at and explain that they aren't the only ignorant people when it comes to coat colors of German Shepherds.
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post #10 of 72 (permalink) Old 01-31-2017, 11:14 AM
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I have a white GSD but he's more of a cream color with tan on his ears and back and tail. A lot of people ask me if he's a greyhound. I really don't know where they get that from...??? Or try to convince me that he's mixed with something like a labrador or a husky. Or a wolf. When I say he's all shepherd, they say oh but he's probably mixed with something! I just smile and nod... "alternative facts"... He is what he is and I love him as such.
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