Top 10 German Dog Breeds

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T’is the season of pretzels and sauerkraut and beer… lots of beer! Yes, it’s Oktoberfest and in honor of all things German, we’re taking a look at a few dogs that might actually understand what sitzen bleiben means (sit and stay) – these German Dog Breeds know what we’re talking about.

Known for producing one heck of a schnitzel and some of the best herding, guarding and hunting dogs around, Germany has contributed heavily to the large dog landscape over the past few centuries but as we look at some of the Top 10 Dogs from this part of the world, we see that not all come in a big boy format!

German Shepherd Dog

German Dog Breeds: German Shepherd DogYou can’t have a list of German dog breeds without mention this pooch. This handsome boy’s strength, intelligence and trainability has turned him into one of the most sought after breeds for assisting the disabled, working with security forces as well as search and rescue. Originally bred to herd sheep, his origins date back to 1899 – so a relative newcomer in the world of dogs. (Photo credit: Mikkel Bigandt/Bigstock)


German Dog Breeds: DachshundThis feisty little guy dates back to the 18th century and is the creation of German breeders. As his name implies Dachs-Hund (Badger Hound), he was built for the hunt and is the only breed certified to hunt above- and below-ground. Today this family favorite is usually found hunting for nothing more than treats lost in the sofa cushions. (Photo credit: Ekaterina Brusnika/Bigstock)

Doberman Pinscher

German Dog Breeds: Doberman PinscherFor a majestic looking dog, the Doberman Pinscher fits the bill handsomely. Originally bred back in the 1890s for protection and guarding, his reputation for being aggressive does not do him justice. Today’s North American version of this breed has resulted in a family dog that is gentle, friendly and less likely to bite than a cocker spaniel. (Photo credit: DragoNika/Bigstock)

Great Dane

German Dog Breeds: Great DaneThe big boy’s German moniker is actually Deutsche Dogge, or German Mastiff and he was bred for hunting deer and wild boar in 17th century Germany. Today this gentle giant is described as affectionate, playful and patient. He’s definitely a people-pooch and beyond stealing significant real estate on the sofa, he’s considered one of the most trustworthy breeds around. (Photo credit: Mikkel Bigandt/Bigstock)


German Dog Breeds: PoodleLet’s add some curly to our list of burly dogs. Poodles date back to 15th century Germany where they were bred as retrievers for those hunting waterfowl. Originally known as a Pudel-Hund (splash-about-hound), his distinctive poofy clip was designed to protect his joints from cold water. Today this water-loving pooch is considered one of the most intelligent breeds around. (Photo credit: Chendongshan/Bigstock)


German Dog Breeds: AffenpinscherIs it me, or is this not the long-lost son of Chewbacca? This confident little guy dates back to Germany in the early 1600s where he was bred for hunting rats and vermin. While he may look like a terrier he is actually part of the pinscher-schnauzer family and makes a great, fun-loving family pet that gets along well with kids and other dogs… although the family cat may be in for a bit of a rough ride. (Photo credit: Joakim Lloyd Raboff/Bigstock)

Giant Schnauzer

German Dog Breeds: Giant SchnauzerThis dignified looking gentleman was bred as a working dog in rural areas of Germany back in the 17th century where he guarded the family homestead and drove animals to market. More recently, he has seen active duty as a guard dog in both World Wars I and II and today you’ll find this quiet, intelligent pooch working as a police dog and in search and rescue operations. (Photo credit: Grigorita Ko/Bigstock)


German Dog Breeds: BoxerSuch a distinctive pooch with that jowly face! This boy was originally developed in Germany in the late 19th century where he was used for hunting larger prey; his unusually powerful jaws allowed him to hold onto animals until the hunter arrived. Today, this playful dog is a big hit with families because of his energetic, patient nature and protective, watchdog tendencies. (Photo credit: larstuchel/Bigstock)


German Dog Breeds: RottweilerThis imposing pooch was originally known as Rottweiler Metzgerhund (or Rottweil Butcher’s dog) because until the mid-19th century they were used to pull carts of meat and herd livestock. Later, they served as guard dogs in World Wars I and II and more recently found their place as search and rescue, police  and guide dogs. This gentle boy has also gained fame as an ideal family pet due to his good nature and devoted personality. (Photo credit: everydoghasastory/Bigstock)


German Dog Breeds: WeimaranerFinishing of our German dog breeds list is the Weimaraner. This lean, powerfully built dog was bred in 19th century Germany for use by nobles in hunting large prey. Also known as the Silver Ghost because of his silver-grey coat and blue-grey eyes, he doesn’t necessarily bring down the bear and deer he once did, but he could knock over kids and take out a chair with his energetic, rambunctious personality. He’s definitely a people pooch, but could be a handful for the inexperienced dog owner. (Photo credit: Dmitry Veryovkin/Bigstock)