Originating in Germany, the German Shepherd Dog consistently ranks as one of the most popular breeds of dogs in the United States year after year. It is a handsome breed of dog that is versatile enough to be the world's number one breed of police dog, as well as guard dog, herding dog, yet be a loving family companion as well. They have an uncanny knack of sensing and responding to dangerous situations and have been many documented instances of their using this sense to save their families or owner from anything from fires to intruders. They rank in most intelligence studies as the third most intelligent breed of dog, and are highly trainable with a desire to learn.
The German Shepherd is very fond of, and protective of any children in it's family, but can be wary of strangers, a good quality to have in a dog for protection, but warm up to and respond well when introduced to friends and outside family. They are an active dog, and as such should have an outlet for their energy, walks at the very least, and ideally a fenced yard to run in. The German Shepherd does well and enjoys it's time inside the house as well, it just needs time outside as well.
As a groomer, the only real complaints I get about the breed are the shedding of the double-coated hair, and the fact that they tend to think they are a lap-dog at times. I have groomed a lot of them, and they are among my favorites, none have shown the aggressive behavior that tend to make people wary of them due to their size which typically ranges from 65-90 lbs. The breed is one to deffinately consider if wanting a large, handsome, and protective dog that shows affection to it's loved ones.
Due to the large numbers and popularity of the breed, German and German Shepherd mixed breeds can be found at local shelters for adoption fairly regularly. As of 5-16-2012 there was a full blooded male German Shepherd at the Sherman Animal Shelter who is about a year old that is available, (pictured) as well as several predominantly German Shepherd mixed breed dogs. Thanks for reading, and always research the type of dog you are considering to make sure that it is the one for you before getting it, the more you weigh the pros and cons, they less likely it will need to be rescued by someone else down the road!