Working Line Breeder Question on Temperament - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 16 (permalink) Old 02-17-2011, 09:15 AM Thread Starter
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Working Line Breeder Question on Temperament

For the past 9 1/2 years, whenever someone who "claims" to know a lot about GSDs sees my long stock coat male, I have consistently heard the following comments: (1) long coats generally have a more laid back, calmer temperament, (2) long coats are "thinkers" (3) long coats have a lower prey drive, (4) long coats do not have the temperament for ScH, and generally are not good at agility. I am curious as to whether WL breeders have seen any strong correlation between the long coats and certain temperament traits -- good or bad -- and how these possible traits may relate to different working activities.

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post #2 of 16 (permalink) Old 02-17-2011, 09:22 AM
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Maybe these comments come because you seem to see more showline longcoats?
Not sure.
I have a LC from working lines, and she is not "calm" or "laid back" in the way I think you mean. She has tons of drive, plenty of aggression when warranted, great tracker, and so much prey drive the herding instructor I took her to would not let her off leash. A VERY intense dog.
She is also a super house dog, loves to hang on the sofa and is easy to handle in day-to-day situations.


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post #3 of 16 (permalink) Old 02-17-2011, 09:30 AM Thread Starter
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You are somewhat correct -- my dogs are Am SL and some of the people that have made the comments I posted seemed to base their opinions on Am SL knowledge. Others who "claimed" to know all about WL gsds also offered the same kinds of comments. That's why I'm interested in your experience and others on this board for a better perspective on comments I have received.

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post #4 of 16 (permalink) Old 02-17-2011, 09:31 AM Thread Starter
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gagsd--GORGEOUS GIRL!!!

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post #5 of 16 (permalink) Old 02-17-2011, 09:48 AM
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I have one as well, and she is very laid back, when chilling in the house and goes from completely relaxed and calm and to spaz'ing out in an instant if I just say a word she likes.

Not good for agility? I don't know that i've owned a more agile dog.

Great obedience, very willing, very loyal, good tracker, great prey drive.

She's not the world's best dog, to anybody but me, but i've worked better and a lot that are at a much lower level interms of temperment, agility and drive. i'd say I have to disagree with pretty much everything these people have said.
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post #6 of 16 (permalink) Old 02-17-2011, 10:31 AM
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A lot of long-coats--from both show and working lines--do seem to be calmer/mellower. That said, it isn't reliably true--you wouldn't want to pick a long coat just in the hope of it being a calmer dog.

Christine

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post #7 of 16 (permalink) Old 02-17-2011, 10:46 AM
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I have seen too many long stock coats that are exceptional working dogs to believe that statement. We have a coat in our club and while he is very mellow in his owner's home, he has a ton of drive on the field.

Funny, two of the driviest ASL I have seen were both coats.

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post #8 of 16 (permalink) Old 02-17-2011, 10:47 AM
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I've not noticed any difference in long coats vs stock coats from the same breedings. Some are more mellow, some aren't, but no more nor less than is just the natural variance in any given litter. The only real difference is coat type.

I do think the perception can be they are more mellow just because they are more commonly found in show lines and pet lines, which are more mellow in general. There are also quite a few pet breeders who intentionally breed long coated, often oversized dogs, for the goal of being mellow pets, so since the breeding stock is selected to be mellow, well of course they are, and the proliferation of those types can certainly lead to the perception that long coats are more mellow. But that's a factor of the bloodlines and breeding, not the hair length.


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post #9 of 16 (permalink) Old 02-17-2011, 10:49 AM Thread Starter
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Christine--
Thanks for your comment. I agree that no one should automatically assume a particular temperament from coat or other structural characteristics. I've just always wondered if you, as well as other breeders, have generally found that genetic connection. Would you say that the long coats you have produced can work in dog sports such as agility or ScH?

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post #10 of 16 (permalink) Old 02-17-2011, 10:57 AM Thread Starter
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Chris -- I was hoping you would chime in!!! Thank you! Your response is what I personally believed based on my dogs and others that I have met, but without the years of experience that may of you have, I was very interested in what you thought. Hope you don't mind Chris, I looked at your website early this morning -- did you just have puppies? If so congrats! How do you find the time to respond on this forum, whelp and care for pups, work, take care of other dogs, etc? If you are taking a certain brand of vitamins, please share the name!

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