German Shepherd Breeding

History of the German Shepherd Dog - East European type

After the Great Patriotic War on the territory of the USSR, the restoration of the number of the German shepherd began with almost a few dozen breed animals preserved by amateur dog breeders.

Most of the dogs that remained in the army after the war were used to staff the border troops, internal troops, the Ministry of the Interior, and private security. Dogs suitable for breeding were transferred to amateur dog breeders in DOSAAF dog breeding clubs for further breeding.

Trophy dogs from the military and police kennels of defeated Germany were also used in pedigree breeding. But unfortunately, in the bulk, these mostly adult individuals were far from ideal in terms of their working and exterior qualities.

Of the several hundred dogs imported in the post-war period from abroad, very few of them were suitable for the further development of the breed. The problem was that there was no qualified selection before the export to the USSR, the dogs were selected spontaneously by not very competent dog breeders in these matters. It is necessary to take into account the fact that during the Second World War, both in Germany and in other countries of Western Europe, a significant part of German shepherd dogs with good working qualities died.

In the post-war period, the Soviet service dog breeding had quite specific tasks: breeding German shepherd and training dogssuitable further for investigative, guard, convoy and other services in adverse climatic conditions.

For service dogs, there were higher requirements in terms of endurance, strength, and unpretentiousness to the conditions of detention, because many areas of the former USSR differ significantly from Western Europe in climatic conditions. In winter it is freezing and there is a lot of snow in Russia, and in summer it is hot and tall grass. Therefore, when selecting dogs for further pedigree breeding, Soviet specialists preferred dogs of higher height and lean stature.

European dog breeders were not interested in breeding escort dogs, the so-called "evil overgrown". They conducted selection in order to breed a lightweight, but very mobile dog with a balanced character. All of this, according to Western dog breeders, was the basis for good training and the possibility of further use in various services.

In the 1970s, work was carried out mainly in the USSR with the East European type of German Shepherd Dog (German Shepherd Dog). Canine scientists of that time denied the shortcomings of Eastern Europeans - looseness, heaviness, straight shoulders, straightforwardness, upset legs. But officers of the border and other troops noted the difficulties in using such dogs for official purposes. As a result, the Eastern European type was declared insolvent, and dog breeders began breeding work using import producers, mainly from the German Democratic Republic.

These dogs were already significantly different from the dogs of the Eastern European type. However, they were not the best specimens of the German Shepherd breed and were not used very widely in breeding. But they had quite good working qualities, which provided more opportunities in the trace (investigative) service.

In the 1980s, despite the limited use of imported producers, interesting litters of puppies, which had smaller growth and anatomically improved body structure, were obtained from matings with Eastern European-type females.

However, these test events could not significantly bring the structure of the dogs of the Eastern European type of German Shepherd Dog to those who were bred in its homeland in Germany and other Western European countries. At the exhibitions of that time in the USSR even separate rings of the German and East European shepherd were held. However, in the German Shepherd Rings level and competition were much higher.

After the first All-Union exhibition of German and Eastern European workshops in Moscow in 1989 East European (German) Sheepdog Standardused by DOSAAF was canceled. Since that time, the advantages of a true German shepherd have no longer caused any doubts among most amateur breeders and professional dog trainers.

From this point on, an expanded delivery of males and females from European countries, mating with imported males is carried out, major international exhibitions are held, judging by judges from Germany and other European countries, and seminars on the breed are held. All this contributed to the improvement and further popularization of the German Shepherd.

The East European Shepherd Dog was relegated to the background and gradually almost forgotten, in my opinion, absolutely not deserved.

The East European Shepherd Dog is an interbreed type of German Shepherd Dog, the result of many years of purposeful selection, planned breeding, selection, a long, carefully thought out selection work.

It is possible to argue long and quite fairly about the disadvantages and merits of the East European Shepherd Dog. But still this is a matter of taste and personal preferences of everyone. Any breed has its pros and cons. And therefore, any breed deserves attention and respect. And even more so the East European Shepherd, which has occupied a huge niche in our canine culture for over 80 years and has achieved quite good results in canine sports.

Andrey Shklyaev, deputy chairman of the Belarusian Public Sports Cynological Association

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