How can you tell if German shepherd is Purebred?

How can you tell if German shepherd is purebred?

In the world of dog breeding, there are always those breeds that stand out. Whether it’s due to their appearance or the jobs they can do, some dogs simply become more prominent. One of these breeds is the German shepherd. Through the following article, we’ll help you learn how to distinguish a purebred one.

Inspect their coat

These dogs are known for their unique coats. Inspecting it can be a quick way to assess whether yours is purebred. Purebred German shepherd puppies will have a medium-length double coat with tough straight hairs close to the body. Most noticeably, their outer coat is rather dense although it can be wavy in texture. 

Additionally, the longer and thicker hairs on a German shepherd will be located near their neck, giving you an extra bit of reassurance. Their head, foreface, and ears have very short hair by contrast. You can see this on most any German shepherd, as this disparity in hairs gives them an unique look. Short hairs can be found on their paws and legs, with the exception of rear legs, hock, and pastern which usually grow a bit longer.

While the coats color varies, there are some frequently present ones. A number of dual colored coats exist including: black and tan, black and red, and bi-color. However, sable and black variants of these coats are also commonly present on German shepherd puppies.

Take note of their behavior

A German shepherd is known for being confident and fearless. These dogs were bred as herding and guard dogs which is why these traits became their defining ones. Any timidness present may mean that your dog isn’t purebred.

Loyalty and friendliness are another two. These dogs may act off against strangers, without getting aggressive, but to their owner they form a strong bond. 

There will be occasional German shepherd’s who do not fit these standards, just like people dogs can be quite different in character. However, if you happen upon one such it’s good to do further inspection to confirm that your German shepherd puppies are indeed purebred.

Read Also: At What Age Is A Dog Too Old To Be Trained?

Examine their registration certificate and pedigree

Most dog breeders will make sure to provide extra reassurance of their dog’s breed. While these aren’t always the most conclusive they give a decent bit of insight. We will be informed who the parents of our dog were, and have direct information on their standing as a purebred. If contacting a breeder, do ask them outright about the dogs. They usually have quick contacts such as websites or phone.

However, this is a self-reported certificate. Meaning that the official channels don’t do any investigation into it but recognize the dog as purebred if the provided information checks out on a surface level.

If you want a more in-depth confirmation, you should check their pedigree. The pedigree papers will go further down the generations of your dog’s ancestry. Usually going at least three generations back. A legitimate pedigree will list out both these details and all the physical details of your dog and the ones that preceded it.

With these two documents, and some of the aforementioned traits, you should be certain of the dog’s status as a purebred. However, there’s always another way to check for maximum certainty.

DNA Test

This will rarely be your first option. The prices of DNA tests can be decently high and other forms of discerning their pedigree can end up being the better way to go. If you are still unsure whether your German shepherd puppies are purebred, it is a good choice to check with this method.

However, these tests do give quite an in depth genetic information on your dog. In some cases, we can even detect canine diseases the dog may struggle with later in life.

There are a ton of genetic markers a dog can have, so looking for the best available DNA test at a decent price is recommended. The information gathered here will stay true all throughout our dog’s life.

When applying a DNA test kit, all you need to do is get a swab and put it inside the dog’s mouth. Collecting saliva is the easiest way to get ample information on your German shepherd pup.


IITSWEB is the Chief Business Development Officer at IITSWEB, a Magento design and development company headquartered in Redwood City, California. He is a Member of the Magento Association and an Adobe Sales Accredited Magento Commerce professional. Jan is responsible for developing and leading the sales and digital marketing strategies of the company. He is passionate about ecommerce and Magento in particular — throughout the years his articles have been featured on Retail Dive, Hacker Noon, Chief Marketer, Mobile Marketer, TMCnet, and many others.

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