Black Sable German Shepherd: Everything You Need to Know

Have you ever heard of the Black Sable German Shepherd? If you haven’t, you’re in for a treat! This extraordinary dog breed possesses a striking appearance and a strong, loyal temperament, making it a popular choice for many dog lovers worldwide. With their dark and luxurious coats, these dogs are truly captivating.

In this article, we will explore the fascinating characteristics of the german shepherd black sable, delving into their unique attributes and shedding light on why they have become such beloved companions.

What is a black sable German shepherd?

A black sable German shepherd is a dog with a black coat, brown markings and tan highlights. Black sables can be born with any other colouration, but this colour is their most common.

The addition of tan on the legs, chest and face gives the dog a distinctive look that makes it stand out from other colours of German shepherds.

The History of Black Sable German Shepherd

The history of the Black Sable German Shepherd is a story that begins in the 1800s when the first German Shepherds were being bred. It’s also a story that ends with you because this breed is still growing in popularity today!

The earliest dogs used for herding sheep were known by different names at the time: “Shepherd’s Dog”, “Old English Sheepdog”, and “German Longhaired Pointer”. These dogs were all large and black with long coats, but they did not have any distinct characteristics that would make them recognizable today.

The first dog that was recognized as a German Shepherd was born in 1899 by Max von Stephanitz. This dog, Horand von Grafath, was named after its parents: Horan and Grafath. He was bred by Mr Max von Stephanitz, who wanted to create a breed that could be used in police work and military service. He wanted these dogs to be strong enough to hold back humans if necessary while also being intelligent enough to recognize commands from their owners.

The appearance of a black sable German shepherd

Black sable German shepherds have a coat that is black with a brownish tint, which gives them a gray appearance. The tips of their ears, their noses and the bottoms of their tails are also brownish. They have black on their paws and their nails are brown.

This breed has a long, muscular body with strong limbs and a deep chest. Their head is large in proportion to their body, with a short muzzle and wide jaw.

Their eyes are dark brown or black in color and they have an alert expression that makes them appear intelligent.

Size And Weight

Black sable German shepherds are medium-sized dogs with a height of 22 to 26 inches and a weight of 75 to 95 pounds.

black sable German shepherds Personality

Black and sable german shepherd are known for their loyalty, intelligence, and loving nature. They love to be around people and other animals and tend to be quite protective of their owners. Black sables love to play fetch with their owners or any willing participants. They are generally friendly toward strangers but may bark at them if they feel their owner is in danger. Like all German shepherds, black sables are prone to excessive barking when left alone for long periods of time.


The average lifespan of a Black Sable German Shepherd is 9-13 years, but the breed has been known to live up to 15 years.

How much is a black sable German Shepherd?

A black sable German shepherd puppy costs $800 to $2,000. The price depends on the breeder and the age of the puppy.

Are black sable German Shepherds rare?

Black sable German shepherds are rare because they are a genetic mutation. The colouration that gives them their name is caused by a gene that adds black pigment to the fur, making it appear almost entirely black.

tips for caring for a black sable German shepherd

Regular Exercise and Mental Stimulation

Black sable German Shepherds are energetic dogs that need plenty of exercise to stay physically fit and mentally stimulated. Aim for at least 30 to 60 minutes of active playtime or outdoor activities daily. Engage them in games like fetch, go for long walks, or even consider obedience training sessions. Mental stimulation through puzzle toys or training exercises will keep their intelligent minds occupied and prevent boredom.

A Balanced Diet

Proper nutrition is vital for the overall well-being of your black sable German Shepherd. Consult with your veterinarian to determine the appropriate type and amount of food for your dog’s age, size, and activity level. Provide a balanced diet that includes high-quality dog food rich in proteins, healthy fats, and essential vitamins. Avoid overfeeding to prevent obesity, which can lead to health issues.

Grooming Care

The luxurious coat of a black sable German Shepherd requires regular grooming to keep it clean and healthy. Brush their fur at least once weekly to remove loose hair and prevent matting. Pay special attention to their dense undercoat, which may shed heavily during certain seasons. Additionally, check their ears regularly for signs of infection, trim their nails when needed, and brush their teeth regularly to maintain good dental hygiene.

Socialization and Training

Early socialization is crucial for a german shepherd black sable to develop into a well-rounded, friendly adult dog. Introduce them to various environments, people, and other animals from a young age. Enrol them in puppy training classes to learn basic commands and proper behaviour. Consistent training and positive reinforcement techniques will help establish a strong bond between you and your furry companion.

Regular Veterinary Check-ups

Like humans, dogs need regular check-ups to ensure their health and well-being. Schedule routine visits to the veterinarian for vaccinations, preventive treatments against parasites, and overall health assessments. Regular examinations can help detect any potential health issues early on, allowing for prompt treatment and prevention of more serious conditions.

Common Health Problems

Hip and Elbow Dysplasia

Hip and elbow dysplasia are common orthopaedic conditions in German Shepherds, including the black sable variety. These conditions occur when the hip or elbow joints develop abnormally, causing discomfort and difficulty in movement. Regular exercise, a balanced diet, and maintaining a healthy weight can help reduce the risk of dysplasia. Responsible breeders often screen their dogs for these conditions, so consider obtaining a puppy from such a breeder.

Degenerative Myelopathy

Degenerative myelopathy is a progressive neurological disease affecting German Shepherds’ spinal cord, including black sables. It leads to weakness in the hind limbs, difficulty walking, and loss of coordination. While there is no cure for degenerative myelopathy, early detection can help manage the condition and provide supportive care to maintain a good quality of life. Regular veterinary check-ups and observing any changes in your dog’s mobility are crucial.

Gastric Dilatation-Volvulus (Bloat)

Bloat, also known as gastric dilatation-volvulus, is a life-threatening condition that commonly affects large and deep-chested breeds like German Shepherds. It occurs when the stomach twists, causing gas buildup and preventing normal digestion. Bloat can be caused by eating too quickly, overeating, or exercising vigorously after a meal. To prevent bloat, feed your black sable German Shepherd smaller meals throughout the day, avoid strenuous exercise after eating, and consider using a slow feeder bowl.


They can be prone to allergies, which may manifest as skin irritations, itching, or gastrointestinal issues. Allergies can be triggered by food, environmental factors (such as pollen or dust mites), or certain substances. If you notice signs of allergies, consult your veterinarian for proper diagnosis and treatment options. Identifying and avoiding the allergens and providing a balanced and hypoallergenic diet can help manage the condition.


Epilepsy is a neurological disorder characterized by recurrent seizures. Some black sable German Shepherds may inherit a genetic predisposition to epilepsy. Seizures can vary in frequency and severity, and managing epilepsy often involves medication prescribed by a veterinarian. If your dog experiences seizures, consult your vet for a proper diagnosis and appropriate treatment plan.

What is the difference between a sable shepherd and a German Shepherd?

The sable Shepherd and the German Shepherd are both large, working dogs. They have similar coats and physiques, but their colouring can be quite different.

German shepherds are typically black with tan markings around their faces and on their paws. They have a long coat that requires regular brushing. Sable shepherds can come in many colours but often have dark brown or black base coat with lighter highlights around their faces and legs.

Sable shepherds are also known for having a less dense coat than German shepherds. It’s not uncommon for them to shed more than their German counterparts do as well!

Final Thoughts

The black sable German Shepherd is an active, strong dog requiring obedience training. They are fairly easy to train if you establish yourself as a pack leader, and this dog likes to please his owner. Aggression towards other animals is sometimes seen in this breed. However, it can be managed.

Other German Shepherd Colour Variations:

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