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Discussion Starter #1
We have a black shepherd puppy. I haven’t noticed prior to getting her that there are A LOT of black pups lately. Is this just like when you get a new car and suddenly start seeing the same car constantly, when you really just never noticed before?

Also, what makes some completely black, and some with a white blaze on their chests? Mine has the white blaze, which doesn’t bother me at all, especially since we don’t show dogs. Just curious.
 

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I have only seen one black GSD in our town, ever! (in the Home Depot...quite a big gorgeous guy).
They are certainly not common here!
Maybe there is a breeder near your area?

( Maybe I had the same thing happen with my car...I used to drive a beige Camry and every time I came out of a store, I'd get confused because there would be 3 other beige Camrys in the lot. So I vowed to get an unusual color next time. Well, I got a "seaglass" Prius and they seem to be all over our town now! So much for that idea!)
 

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Since I got my Jupey, I have met only one other black GSD. We have an active dog park, and I've seen many GSDs, shepherd mixes, and even two white GSDs, but not a single other black (the one we did meet was at another dog park).

I am part of the black GSD facebook group, though (which is worldwide), and there are new people every day. It seems that almost half of all black GSDs are named either Shadow or Bear.
 

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I am part of the black GSD facebook group, though (which is worldwide), and there are new people every day. It seems that almost half of all black GSDs are named either Shadow or Bear.
Ha ha, I've found that half of huskies are named "Balto" or "Yukon". And, the white ones are usually named "Ghost" in honor of Game of Thrones. :)
 

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We have a black shepherd puppy. I haven’t noticed prior to getting her that there are A LOT of black pups lately. Is this just like when you get a new car and suddenly start seeing the same car constantly, when you really just never noticed before?

Also, what makes some completely black, and some with a white blaze on their chests? Mine has the white blaze, which doesn’t bother me at all, especially since we don’t show dogs. Just curious.
The white markings are a genetic thing. Someone smarter then me can explain it. Lol.
The seeing them is the new car idea. Bud came from a line that produced blacks so I'm used to seeing them. I was a bit shocked when people started saying they had never seen one. In Buds lines every litter produced one black and one long coat. Just one. Always female. It was very weird and only once a black long coat. I would have loved to study the genetics on it.
 

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About 7% of GSDs are black. Genetically true blacks are very black and have black noses and black pads and nails. They might have a tad of silver or grey intermingled with black between their toes and up the back of the front legs. A black GSD who carries a white recessive gene would likely show this by white toes and nails or a large white blaze on the chest or both. Some believe that some blacks with white patches are the result of some type of issue during embryonic development rather than genetics. Breeders who breed strictly for blacks, such as a breeding where five generations and all 62 ancestors are all black with no scattered tan, silver or grey hairs anywhere on them, are very black and generally blacker than most people see. My GSD is black and out of two sable colored dogs. He is very black with black nails, pads and nose and has a few silver hairs scattered between his toes and a little bit of grey going up a small section of his rear front legs. Some believe that genetically true blacks tend to be a little different in that they are often larger and tend to have a straighter back. That is the case with my dog. He is very large boned, well muscled, about 26" at the withers, has a thick long tail, and weighs about 108 pounds.
 

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Also, what makes some completely black, and some with a white blaze on their chests? Mine has the white blaze, which doesn’t bother me at all, especially since we don’t show dogs. Just curious.

The white spot is residual in German Shepherds. There may be a genetic component but it's not a spotting gene. The last spots to develop color is on the chest and toes so if your's has white, it's simply a development thing. I spoke to a geneticist about this a few months ago.

My black and tan girl has a white spot like her black and tan father. Several of the puppies did and I've seen several from another male that has white like him. So I do think there is something genetic in the development that throws that but it's not a spotting gene like other breeds nor is related to the "white" gene which is actually a masking gene, not a color gene.

Even if you did show dogs, you don't get dinged unless it's excessive.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
That’s the weird thing, the breeder said that this is the first litter of the same dam and sire to have the white blaze. They have had 4 other successfully litters of all black.

It’s a small white blaze. She has no other white anywhere. Black nose, black nails, all black between her toes. It’s just that one white blaze.

The only breeders we have where I live are crap BYB, without a clue as to what to look for in a breeding pair. No health testing prior to breeding. Most of the pups are sold at 6 weeks with no vaccinations or deworming. I would never get a pup from a breeder in my area. We got Seiran from a reputable breeder in Washington, and I live in AZ. They called us immediately when the blaze appeared and offered us pick of the next black litter, or a discounted cost on the one they chose for us do to that white blaze. We told them we were perfectly happy with the one they chose for us, and no need to discount or wait for the next litter. We don’t do anything where a patch would matter, they are mainly household pets that we give work. Like agility. But that is just for fun and to keep the Husky/GSD from having the hard zoomies that destroy everything in his reach! Lol
 

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Some believe that genetically true blacks tend to be a little different in that they are often larger and tend to have a straighter back. That is the case with my dog. He is very large boned, well muscled, about 26" at the withers, has a thick long tail, and weighs about 108 pounds.
My Jupey is like this, very stocky and muscular and above-average size. Straight back, kind of with a big butt. He's a bit over 75 lbs at 7.5 months. His tail is crooked and short (we think broken in the womb), but it's very thick.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
That’s odd, our breeder said his blacks tend to be a bit smaller than the normal Black and Tans. Maybe just his breeding pair? I was able to meet the dam, and she was the same size as Lyka, who is shorter then the standard GSD. Not that I’ve measured, just by seeing the ones locally, and in pictures 🤷‍♀️ 🤣
 

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That’s odd, our breeder said his blacks tend to be a bit smaller than the normal Black and Tans. Maybe just his breeding pair? I was able to meet the dam, and she was the same size as Lyka, who is shorter then the standard GSD. Not that I’ve measured, just by seeing the ones locally, and in pictures 🤷‍♀️ 🤣
The size of the dog has nothing to do with color. It is determined by other factors. If your breeder is thinking that his black pups are smaller it could be nothing more then luck, or some as yet unknown anomaly. As I said earlier the black pups born in Buds line were always female. Not a single black male in the whole line. It just worked out that way.
 

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Judging size by dogs seen locally is doing your dog a disservice. The second thing out of everyone's mouth on seeing my black guy (first is, of course, "What is he mixed with?") is that he is small for a shepherd. At 2 yrs. old he is within breed standard for height at 24.5" at the withers. Folks in the US are so indoctrinated to seeing what the pet market has done to shepherds = oversized saddlebacks.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Judging size by dogs seen locally is doing your dog a disservice. The second thing out of everyone's mouth on seeing my black guy (first is, of course, "What is he mixed with?") is that he is small for a shepherd. At 2 yrs. old he is within breed standard for height at 24.5" at the withers. Folks in the US are so indoctrinated to seeing what the pet market has done to shepherds = oversized saddlebacks.
I constantly get the same thing with Lyka because of her size. I’m not even sure if she pure GSD, she was being used in a shoddy BYB “program,” as a breeding bitch, and has no papers.

While researching breeders, we took our time. We waited a little over a year for the litter of the breeding pair we wanted, and that was because they said their pair breeds slightly smaller than standard GSD’s. I’d much rather have a 50lb GSD than a 100lb GSD. The dam flips between 45-50lbs, the sire maxes out at 70 when working. I was just saying odd, because I often hear that black GSD’s tend to run taller and morw bulky than their Black and Tan counterparts.

Lyka and Seiran both have straight backs. My Husky/GSD also has a straight back. We aren’t interest in the over sized dogs, which is why we were on the hunt for a reputable breeder not pushing the oversized, swayed back GSD.

I was in an auto accident 2 years ago that has left me completely numb on the right side of my body. It makes it difficult to handle even my small GSD and Husky on walks, so I only walk with my DH, and I focus more on training and agility, which doesn’t take as much use of my right side. A sable Shilo is my dream dog looks wise, but I would never purchase one, again because it’s more dog than I can handle.
@Jax08, thanks for the info! I couldn’t seem to find anything as to why some have the white and some don’t.
 

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Black often appears smaller at first even if it isn't. 2 million women over 40 in bootcut yoga pants can't be wrong. (Hi- me included)

My dog has the small white blaze (he is a bicolor). We jokingly call it The Stamp since his great grandsire has it.
 

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Yep, there's also the "little black dresses" and the black swimsuits...:)

The one black GSD I saw was very big, probably an 85-90 pounder.
I had never seen one before - his shape was unmistakably GSD but my first thought was, "Wow, I didn't know they came in that color!"
He was calm and well-behaved, but I noticed that people in the Home Depot were giving him a lot of space. :)
 

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I have heard black gsds are known to be larger may be different in different lines I’m not sure. Just bone alone can add to the weight same with people.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Black often appears smaller at first even if it isn't. 2 million women over 40 in bootcut yoga pants can't be wrong. (Hi- me included)

My dog has the small white blaze (he is a bicolor). We jokingly call it The Stamp since his great grandsire has it.
I thought I was the only one left still wearing the bootcut! All I ever see is the skinny legged ones around here, and that is not a sight ANYONE needs to get of me! Lol

Bootleg leggings, and a nice loose T-shirt, all day every day, no yoga class necessary 🤣
 

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A lot of the black GSD's that popped up in Alberta originated from Czech imports brought in in the early 2000's. They seemed to be a bit heavier boned and had a distinctly different shape then the ASL lines that had been commonly seen in the area before that.
Keeping in mind that the working line dogs were largely, well, working and tended to sell to a different set then the pet folks it stands to reason that when they first started appearing it caused a stir.
Now that the pet stock is bigger to keep up with that "mine is bigger" mentality it is not so noticeable.

Also understand that humans have evolved to instinctively see some shapes and colors as threatening which can give a perception of "bigger". Bud was 95lbs lean, so a big boy and he carried himself with authority. Although he was dark he was distinctly black and red yet a majority of people moved out of his way when we walked no matter how well behaved he was. Lex was black and decidedly smaller then Sabs yet people perceived her as the bigger and more threatening of the two.
 

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Also understand that humans have evolved to instinctively see some shapes and colors as threatening which can give a perception of "bigger".
I sent my parents a picture of Jupiter with a big, goofy smile (my avi) nd two long strands of drool, which to me and my family was cute and silly. Both of my parents interpreted the picture as being scary! I wonder how much of that is his black fur.
 
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