The Thuringian Shepherd was first exhibited at a show in Hanover, Germany in 1882 – a year that marked the beginning of the evolution of a dog with a mind blowing ability to control a herd of sheep. The stocky, wolf-grey colored shepherds had erect ears and a curled tail, and came as a short-haired variety as well as a shaggy-haired type. Max von Stephanitz, the first president of the Verein fur Deutsche Schaferhunde, thought they were extremely energetic, and often impudent – even untamable.
Why should you care about a breed that, as far as we can tell, may well be extinct? Because if you love German Shepherd Dogs, you love traits the breed got from a Thuringian Shepherd named Horand Von Grafrath – the foundation dog of the German Shepherd Dog breed developed by Max von Stephanitz.
But guess what? If you love a Doberman Pinscher, you, too, admire traits the breed inherited from a Thuringian Shepherd (along with other breeds that went into the Doberman’s development). Be sure to add the Giant Schnauzer and Shiloh Shepherd to the list of breeds that have Thuringian Shepherd in their ancestry.