Oversized v. Standard sized GSD's Which do you prefer? - Page 1

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by TomGulf StatesK9 on 30 June 2017 - 19:06

Over the years I have found ads for "Oversized " GSD's I would like to have "oversized" defined. My new male is at (#101) at age 2 (He is within the height standard. He is not fat but very fit and stout. His sire came from the Netherland were his parents were titled in KNPV and IPO. His dam was from Working German Lines and Sch Titled. My dog is tremendously agile, faster/quicker than larger dogs that I've been around. Can anyone defined "Oversized" for me as most seem to be outside the written standard.

by GSCat on 30 June 2017 - 23:06

An oversized German Shepherd Dog is, by definition, outside of the breed standard, by being being larger in height and/or weight. They do not fit the ideal, as envisioned by Max von Stephanitz. Development of the ideal was driven by the work the dog was expected/needed to perform.

I prefer a German Shepherd Dog that is on the smaller end of the standard, but still within the standard, because s/he can do the work expected of GSD, and also get into smaller spaces when doing some tasks. And I can pick my GSD up and hold her up/carry her across my shoulders for a long time when some inconsiderate person allows their unleashed/loose, aggressive, vicious yap-yap dog to charge and attack my dog and me. An unintended, but nice benefit of the smaller size, is she eats less than a larger specimen would.

Once upon a time I had an "oversized" female GSD. She weighed 115 pounds. Although she was healthy and not medically overweight, she was well over the breed standard for both height and weight and would be considered an "oversized German Shepherd Dog." Although an awesome dog, who did what I needed her to do at that time, she would not have been able to do some things I need my current GSD to do. So by both definition and ability, that dog did not meet either the breed standard or von Stephanitz' ideal.

The AKC breed standard does not differentiate between Czech working line, East German (DDR) working line, West German working line, West German show line, or American/Canadian show line GSD, so there are no size or weight allowances even though the different lines may have generally identifying size, weight, appearance, and/or temperament traits. Within the various types, there are different lines (example 6 lines in the Czech working line GSD alone!). And many GSD are a mixture of two or more types.

I hope this helps.



by TomGulf StatesK9 on 01 July 2017 - 05:07

Thanks I tend to think as you do. I feel in into the trap and ended up with a stud dog that matured at 140+ pounds yet was a search and rescue dog. The problem I had with him was when I needed to lift him. Then I got a DDR female that matured at 90+ pound and another at 85+ pounds, I also bought a DDR bred female that weighed 50 pound yet produced 100 pound pups. I must say all of their pups excelled at their jobs. But we are now breeding for dogs within the standard. We provide mostly SAR, Medical Service dogs, Some Sport Dogs. What got me thinking this way was my yrs as a horse trainer (20 yrs ago). The halter confirmation horses were over-muscled and oversized (but looked good) yet they did not work well. The working horses (cutting, roping, barrel horses, etc.) were smaller smooth-muscled good hooves and able to perform with perfection. Now don't get me wrong, some of halter horses excelled and many of the working horses did not. But if I was choosing one to work - it would be a working bred horse. I am now applying this philosophy to my dogs.

by Hundmutter on 04 July 2017 - 05:07

Good for you Tom. You might also like to read the thred "DDR Growth Chart" which is also current on PDB (General & Newcomers Forums) if you haven't already; I think you may find it of interest.


by Bundishep on 08 July 2017 - 19:07

I breed working line dogs i find adult males in the 75 to 90 range work best for being most agile and have the best speed /agility and females in the 60 to 80 pound range are a good weight for working female, the only thing i find with very light females say approx 50 to 60 pound range is they tend to have more reproduction problems unable to tie- low milk production or hard deliverys, larger females i find in my own kennel tend to have less problems.
Ron Hudson

by Ron Hudson on 30 August 2017 - 19:08

Serious breeders try their best to stay within the standard. Competition demands this. Hobby breeders are less inclined to stay within the standard preferring larger dogs as to impress their clients.

by Wildfyre on 31 August 2017 - 20:08

I prefer dogs within standard, but do not mind them being an inch under or over in terms of height. I do not care for dogs that are 100+ lbs.

My service dog was 27" tall, but averaged 87 lbs in working weight. Was perfect for mobility.

by shepherdace on 04 September 2017 - 06:09

The oversized dogs assuming they have quality do look impressive and in a small show ring they stand out.On the other hand in a large Specialty ring where endurance is so essential many (not all) of them wear out as compared to the 63 or 64 cm dog.Same goes with agility and TSB.I try to look for 65cm in an all round show and bite work dog but they're few and far between.

by Mfundo on 06 September 2017 - 06:09

Stay within the 60 - 65cm range for males. A well bred dog using the best producing lines will always look good. An oversized dog looks good for the wrong reasons. Don't do it. The correct type is that envisaged in the SV breed standard, not a dog bred to individual tastes.

by SitasMom on 07 September 2017 - 04:09

I prefer a true medium size dog 63cm.

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