White German Shepherds have an interesting history amongst the German Shepherd dog breed.
In the guide below, we outline this history, along with how White German Shepherds are created from a genetic perspective, & other potentially important information.
Let’s take a look!
(NOTE: this is a general information guide only, and is not professional advice, or a substitute for professional advice. A qualified vet or animal expert is the only person qualified to give you expert advice in regards to your pet/s)
White German Shepherds: 11 Things To Know
1. History Of The White German Shepherd
We outlined the emergence and history of the White German Shepherd in a separate guide.
To summarise, White German Shepherds existed in Germany where and when the German Shepherd breed was first developed (from 1899 onwards).
Some reports indicate that a white herding dog call “Greif” was the grandfather of the original German Shepherd, Horand von Grafath.
Because of Greif, it was possible for the recessive white gene to be passed down in the DNA material of German Shepherds, and White German Shepherds to exist.
Some time around 1933, the breed standard for German Shepherds was amended to ban white-coated German Shepherds from registration.
This reportedly impacted how some breeders viewed breeding the White German Shepherd out of the breeding lines.
Beyond that though, German Shepherds were exported to other parts of the world, like the US in 1907, and White German Shepherds were bred in other countries.
2. What Do German Shepherd Breed Standards Currently State About White German Shepherds?
As of 2022:
– AKC German Shepherd Breed Standard
Disqualifies white dogs
– FCI German Shepherd Breed Standard
Doesn’t allow white dogs
3. So, Are White German Shepherds Their Own Breed Of Dog?
Technically, they might not be.
Some dog breed registries recognize white as a color variation of the German Shepherd (we list some of the other colors in another guide), however they disqualify the color in their breed standards.
Breed recognition and dog clubs exist for dogs such as the White Shepherd, and also the Swiss Shepherd, but, potentially not for the White German Shepherd.
4. How Are White German Shepherds Created From A Genetics Perspective?
A general explanation for this might be that White German Shepherds can be born from German Shepherds of any color, as long double recessive white color genes are passed down from the parents to the puppy (and they are expressed in the puppy over more dominant color genes)
When both parents are white, the puppy will be white, but the parents can be different colors as long as one has the recessive white gene.
Whether the puppy is solid white depends on if the parents also pass the solid white pattern gene to the White German Shepherd Puppy.
While white GSDs can be all white, some have patterns or marking distributions which cause them to be predominantly white, and black in some parts like the back/saddle for example.
Silver and white German Shepherds, and tan/black and white German Shepherds are other more common white variations.
This article further explains how different GSDs with different color and patterns/marking combinations are created.
5. Are White German Shepherds Albinos?
Various reports indicate they are not albinos.
6. White German Shepherd Behavior and Temperament
There doesn’t seem to be enough strong data or evidence to support that White German Shepherds have a temperament that is significantly different to a standard color GSD.
7. Potential Health Problems For White German Shepherd Related To Albinism
Several reports indicate that White German Shepherds are NOT albinos, and therefore do not have any of the health problems associated with albinism.
8. Cost Of Buying A White German Shepherd
The cost to buy a specific breed of dog depends on the country it’s bought from, along with a wide range of other factors.
Some general information on buying each breed though might include:
Buying From Breeders
According to different online information at the time of publishing this guide, the general cost to buy a White German Shepherd from breeders in the US might be:
– Anywhere from $800 to $4000+
We put together this guide about some potential things to look for when buying a GSD puppy.
Buying from a breeder may not be the only option to own this dog.
Adopting or rescuing may be other options too.
The cost to adopt or rescue a dog can be significantly cheaper than buying from a breeder in some instances, although there’s usually still a basic cost to adopt/rescue a dog.
When adopting a GSD, you might like to have a read of these guides first:
Things To Consider When Adopting or Rescuing A German Shepherd
Where To Find A German Shepherd Rescue or Shelter Near You
Buying a dog that is being re-homed might another option to buy a dog.
The cost for rehomed dogs can vary.
9. Photos and Images of White German Shepherds
You can find some good photos of White German Shepherds on the White German Shepherds Facebook page.
We are in no way connected to this page.
Other social media accounts, and breeder websites may have more photos.
10. Where To Find Out More About White German Shepherds
A few good places to find out more about White German Shepherds might be:
– Websites and online profiles of White German Shepherd breeders, and also owners
– Official or dedicated White German Shepherd websites, clubs, associations and groups
11. Comparison Of White German Shepherds To Swiss Shepherds & White Shepherds
We provide a comparison of German Shepherds to Swiss Shepherds and also White Shepherds in another guide.
More Information & Facts About The German Shepherd Dog Breed
We’ve put together this guide with over 100 interesting pieces of information and facts about the German Shepherd Dog Breed.
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