The German Shepherd is a breed of medium to big-sized working dog that originated in Germany. In the English language, the breed’s officially recognized name is German Shepherd Dog (sometimes abbreviated as GSD).
The breed was officially known as the Alsatian in Britain from after the First World War until 1977 when its name was changed back to German Shepherd.
Despite its primitive, wolf-like appearance the German Shepherd is a relatively modern breed of dog, with their origin dating to 1899. As part of the Herding Group, German Shepherds are working dogs developed originally for herding sheep. Since that time however, because of their strength, intelligence, trainability, and obedience, German Shepherds around the world are often the preferred breed for many types of work, including disability assistance, search-and-rescue, police and military roles, and acting.
The German Shepherd is the second-most registered breed by the American Kennel Club and seventh-most registered breed by The Kennel Club in the United Kingdom.