I was out for a walk with Layla today and saw a very sad sight. I saw a German Shepherd that looked like a frog. I couldn't believe it. The dogs back was extremely angled and was walking around like his/her hind legs were half the length of fore legs. Seeing stuff like that just makes me sick! I am glad their isn't anything in the lab breed specification that breeders can distort to a point of frog like German Shepherds. Or is there?
The severe angulation in GSDs is part of the conformation for GSDs in the show ring. I much prefer the working GSD (which looks normal) since a lot of the GSDs that are shown, particularly in AKC, cannot "work" due to their conformation.
Every breed has standards that dogs are supposed to fit, but the Labrador doesn't have anything like the GSD.
American GSD are very deformed (sorry and hope not to offend anyone, but honestly, its true). The American breeders exagerated so much the angles of the back legs that the dogs now walk like sea lions. Look at a real GSD (German bred) which actually need to have different titles as opposed to being just comformation dogs and you won´t see anything like the American comformation GSDs. At some point it was estimated that more than 80% of GSDs had hip dyslplasia.
For some breeds, the American Bloodlines are goreous (like my Rough Collie compared to the brit lines, Irish Setters are also gorgeous compared to the european lines), but with the working breeds I honestly think they did a diservice (like GSDs and Dobes)
The UKC (United Kennel Club) just revised it's standard earlier this year - I hope it does help that breed. I know a few people very involved in the breed who have very nice working type GSDs who have great temperaments, but they couldn't get a championship since the standards were so skewed.
"The tendencies toward exaggeration and steep angles are unacceptable. German Shepherd Dogs with unstable temperaments, sharply angulated croups, overly long front and rear pasterns, and hocks that are weak and wobbly are poor representations of this working breed. UKC is unwilling to condone the validity of using such dogs in a breeding program, and cautions judges about awarding wins to these representatives."
I hate that exaggerated angulation on the GSD hind legs. To my eye, it makes them look as though something near their hind quarters HURTS!
Seamus and Flynn
Its mystifying to me that a working breed has been so totally distorted. None of the other shepherdy breeds have suffered the pointless manipulation that GSDs have. Structurally, they should just be a heavier versions of the other European shepherds.
Sharon, Blaise and Diesel.
Was there a functional reason to have a sloped back before it was exaggerated?