DDR German Shepherds are named for the Deutsches Demokratische Republik (German Democratic Republic) or what is known in English as East Germany. The DDR was formed in 1949 at the end of World War II.
DDR German shepherds, also known as East German shepherds, has always been a valuable dog since the World Wars. They worked mainly for the military at that time.
DDR German shepherds are intelligent, loyal, and hardworking, making them the favorite of the police force. Deutsche Demokratische Republik German Shepherd dogs were one of the most carefully bred dogs in the line of German shepherds.
It’s no surprise considering their diverse background as working dogs. But time can be a bit harsh. Over the years, these dogs became unknown to many. This might even be the first time you hear of DDR German Shepherd dogs.
Table of Contents
- DDR German Shepherd History
- Are There Still DDR German Shepherds Now?
- What Work Are DDR Dogs Suited to beside Security?
- How Do DDR German Shepherds Get Along With Children?
- DDR vs Czech German Shepherd
- DDR German Shepherd Appearance
- Health Conditions of East German Shepherds
- Are Looking for DDR German Shepherds?
- Which Things Do You Need to Keep in Mind Training a DDR German Shepherd?
- Choosing the Right Type
- DDR GSD as Protection Dogs
DDR German Shepherd History
The East German German shepherd breed started its reign in the dog kingdom in Germany in 1949. On October 7, 1949, the Soviet Union closed the borders on the Eastern sector it occupied, and it became the German Democratic Republic (Deutsche Demokratische Republik, or DDR).
When the German borders were opened in 1989, the need for guards and guard dogs ended. Within five months of the border opening, half of the 50,000 guards had been dismissed, with the remainder retained to dismantle the border fortifications. Many of the DDR dogs were sold, abandoned, or put down.
Today, Vom Banach K9 is one of a small number of dedicated breeders worldwide actively preserving the DDR lineage and its physical soundness and structure, intelligence, working abilities, innate drive, highly developed tracking abilities, temperament, and devotion to their handler.
However, the reign of pure DDR German shepherds ended after 40 years. This is because East Germany and West Germany only lasted from 1949 to 1990. Now, the country is one nation.
Since then, there have been fewer DDR German shepherds around the world. Perhaps the most viable reason is that there are dogs more suited to families that replaced them.
Are There Still DDR German Shepherds Now?
As previously said, it was 1990 when Germany became one nation again. This event led to the demobilization of many soldiers from their duty on the battlefield.
The same goes for East German shepherds, which were mainly used for the military force. But this doesn’t stop breeders from continuing the bloodline. Despite the dissolution of the DDR German shepherd’s birthplace, East Germany, you can still see East German shepherds, although much less likely than before.
However, some DDR German shepherd breeders only made it possible by breeding DDR dogs with another breed. That’s why they are rare, but even more so with pure DDR German shepherds.
These rare ones also have more remarkable athletic potential than those with mixed breeds, as to be expected from a pure military dog. Although the mixed breeds of East German shepherds are used for different purposes, most of the purebred DDR German shepherds are used for their original purpose as protection dogs.
What Work Are DDR Dogs Suited to beside Security?
A DDR (Deutsche Demokratische Republik)German Shepherd’s tracking skills also make these dogs ideal for search and rescue work. Their ability to traverse all kinds of terrain can help them locate people who are trape under rubble after all types of disaster situations.
Some dogs are more protection-minded than others, for example. German Shepherds have been used as service dogs for decades, and East German Shepherds also have traits that are perfect for work as service dogs. These dogs are very alert to anything going on near their owners, making reliable guides.
The dogs’ sturdy build helps them guide the blind effortlessly, as well as assist people with mobility issues. Because these dogs are both tall and strong, they can quickly assist either a child or adult facing problems with mobility.
How Do DDR German Shepherds Get Along With Children?
With proper socialization at a young age, DDR German Shepherds will get along well with children. These dogs will not only be active, engaged playmates for your children but will also be their most faithful protectors. Because German Shepherds, as a whole, were initially bred to protect flocks, it’s not uncommon for them to “herd” children away from understood danger.
You can expect DDR German Shepherd Dogs to remain alert and watchful whenever children are at play near them. Playing with children provides these active dogs with a perfect outlet for their energy levels. Any breed designed to work benefits from having a lot of opportunities to exercise, and German Shepherds are no exception. Excreting boredom is always helpful.
Even though no dog, including a German Shepherd, should be used as a substitute for surveillance, you can trust these dogs to be alert to any possible threats to your children’s safety. Their family duty fully extends to your youngest members.
DDR vs Czech German Shepherd
Due to being of the same birthplace, DDR and Czech German shepherds are always comparing. Fortunately, DDR German shepherds possess an ability that Czech German shepherds do not have.
Schutzhund refers to “protection dog.” it’s mainly a sport that demonstrates the capabilities of a particular breed. Since DDR dogs are known for their background with being a police dog, they excel in such an activity. Czech German shepherds, on the other hand, do not possess a history like that. There are other differences between the two besides their compatibility with Schutzhund training.
DDR German Shepherd Appearance
DDR dogs tend to have a darker coat color than Czech German shepherds. It’s also worth noting that DDR German shepherds excel in terms of health.
Health Conditions of East German Shepherds
DDR German shepherds were bred as a police dog. Therefore, they are designed to withstand common health issues. This helps them fight on many health problems, including the most common issue with German shepherds, hip dysplasia.
East German shepherds are entirely immune to such a disorder. They simply have fewer chances of developing this health problem than most dogs. However, there are cases where mixed breed DDR German shepherds may inherit some traits from the other breed, including the genes for hip dysplasia. That’s why it’s essential only to get DDR dogs from a respected breeder.
Are Looking for DDR German Shepherds?
DDR German shepherds are unique, and unless they start getting repopulated all over the world, they will always be special. Such quality breeding material is not natural to purchase.
They are often directly bred by those in the police force, so most of the time, they aren’t for sale. There is also a chance that DDR German shepherds will be unaffordable to most. But that’s not to say you can’t buy one. It’s just that your best bet is to simply get a mixed breed with one parent being a DDR German shepherd.
Which Things Do You Need to Keep in Mind Training a DDR German Shepherd?
One of the most important things to know is that DDR (Deutsche Demokratische Republik) German Shepherds are more significant and take longer to mature than some other German Shepherds. You should not be too concerned about your dog still acting puppyish until around 18 months.
Any training methods you use with these dogs need to reinforce your leadership and demonstrate a positive attitude. These dogs have the same high intelligence level common to all Shepherds, and your training efforts need to respect their intelligence. Most of the principles that apply to other subtypes also apply to East German Shepherds.
Choosing the Right Type
If you’re planning to add a German shepherd to your family, make sure to opt for the lines that best suit your lifestyle. While you are researching, you may find the dog breed abbreviated as GSD, with its geographic designator in front of it.
DDR GSD as Protection Dogs
Since the unification of Germany in 1990, DDR German shepherds became rare for many reasons. These reasons include being. Fortunately, some of them were sold as protection dogs, and for a high price to boot. As a result, there was an increase in DDR German shepherd breeders that continued breeding East German shepherds the old-fashioned way.
So if some want to continue the bloodline, there are also breeders that wish to profit from these rare protection dogs. With that said, DDR dogs are still the protective dog they were during the World Wars, with a suitable temperament and appearance.
They are naturally a protective dog, loyal to its master and anyone within their owner’s house. East German shepherds are likely to be wary of any threat they recognize. They are also bred to be more reliable than most, with heads more significant than that of a standard GSD and more muscular build.
It is essential to know more about a dog’s habits and needs before moving to get it home. I hope this article has provided you with the information necessary to kick off your new relationship with a DDR (East German shepherds) German Shepherd. However, this information is not exhaustive, and we recommend looking for a few books with detailed information on how to take care of your German Shepherd.
DDR German shepherds are not your ordinary German Shepherd. They are unique in more ways than one. They’ve done their duty to their nation. People just need to go back to where these dogs came from. They are energetic, alert, and their immunity to health issues is top-notch. Other breeds may have replaced them, but they will always be unique.