Long Haired German Shepherds And Puppies


Learn all about long haired German Shepherds from a breeder with nearly 30 years of breeding experience. Nadelhaus German Shepherds is a world class German Shepherd breeder located in Northern California. We breed to the world standard, adhering to the rules of the Verein für deutsche Schäferhunde. Our breeding program has earned the the highest level of accomplishments that a kennel in the United States can achieve.

What is a long haired German Shepherd?

Simply put, long-haired German Shepherds are the same as German Shepherd dogs (GSDs), but with longer hair. Long haired German Shepherds are technically called a long coat German Shepherd, while a short-haired German Shepherd is called a normal coat or stock coat German Shepherd. In the breeding and show dog world, they are described even more specifically as “stock hair” or “long stock hair with undercoat”.

Dogs with either coat have the same physiological structure and both have double coats: an undercoat and a top coat. The only difference between the two is the top coat. The long haired German Shepherd will have a heavier top coat than the undercoat. The double coat of a German Shepherd is an important feature of the breed. The double coat weathers and insulates the dogs–it protects them from the cold in the winter and the heat in the summer. The length of the coat of a German Shepherd has no impact on its ability as a working dog.


What does a long haired German Shepherd look like?

The skeleton and structure of a long haired German Shepherd will be the same as a short haired German Shepherd. Both dogs will have an undercoat, but the difference is that the top coat of a long haired German Shepherd will be longer. The long coat GSD has longer and silkier hair on the chest, back, face, tail, and on the backside of its legs.

According to the standards of the FCI, the standard for the long coat is described as:

The guard hair should be long, soft and not close fitting, with tufts on the ears and legs, bushy trousers and bushy tail with downward formation of tuft. Short on the head, including the inside of the ears, on the front side of the legs, on the paws and toes, somewhat longer and more strongly covered in hair on the neck, almost forming a

On the back side of the legs the hair extends to the carpal joint or the hock and forms clear trousers on the back side of the haunches.

Where do long haired German Shepherds come from?

Historically, German Shepherds originated in Germany and were native sheepdogs. In 1899, a dog club called the Verein für Deutsche Schäferhunde (SV) e.V. was founded by Captain Max von Stephanitz. He firmly believed that the standard of the German Shepherd breed should not include dogs with long hair. Throughout the 1900s, long haired German Shepherds were considered unsuitable and unacceptable for breeding. It wasn’t until this past decade, when the SV and FCI approved the change in conformation standards, that long coat German Shepherds became officially accepted into club breeding standards.


How big do long haired German Shepherds get?

Long haired German Shepherds are structurally the same as short haired German Shepherds, therefore they can both grow to similar sizes.

  • Males: 24-26 inches tall, 65-90 pounds
  • Females: 22-24 inches tall, 50-70 pounds

Since both German Shepherds are physiologically the same, they also have the same temperaments: loyal, intelligent, energetic, courageous and protective. German Shepherds are ranked #2 on the AKC Breed Popularity list and make for wonderful family companions and working dogs.

How can I identify a long haired German Shepherd puppy?

In the photo below are two litter mates from a recent Nadelhaus litter. The puppy on the left is a long coat and the puppy on the right is a normal coat. The long coat has wispier hair on the chest, back, face, tail, and on the backside of its legs.


Left: long haired German Shepherd puppy, Right: short haired German Shepherd puppy

How rare are long haired German Shepherds?

Genetically in German Shepherds, the short hair gene is dominant and the long hair gene is recessive. This means if two short haired German Shepherds are mated, but neither carries the recessive long hair gene, then no long haired puppies can be produced. However, if two short haired German Shepherds are mated and both carry the recessive gene, then long haired puppies can be produced.

Do long haired German Shepherds shed more than short haired German Shepherds?

No, this is a common misconception. Long haired German Shepherds have a thicker topcoat than an undercoat, so there is less shedding because there’s less undercoat. Although they shed less than short haired German Shepherds, their coats still require regular maintenance.

They will need regular brushing and grooming, especially if you enjoy hiking or outdoor activities with your GSD. You may notice the occasional leaves, twigs, or burrs getting caught in a long haired German Shepherd’s fur, but regular brushing is an easy fix for this.

It is also a common misconception that long haired German Shepherds don’t have an undercoat like their short haired relatives. While it is a rare occurrence for a long haired GSD to not have an undercoat, most of them do have undercoats. And just like short haired GSDs, their undercoats will shed more or less throughout the year depending on the season.


Should I trim my long haired German Shepherd's coat?

The decision to trim a long haired German Shepherd comes down to personal preference, but it is not a necessity. Trimming can help make for more manageable living around the house. If you choose to trim, you can trim around the backs of the ears, on the back of the legs (both front and back) and then thin the bushy tail.

Shaving a German Shepherd on the other hand is never recommended. Their double coats help keep them warm in the winter and cool in the summer.

What are long haired German Shepherds called?

Long haired German Shepherds are also called:

  • Long coat
  • Long stock hair
  • Long stock hair with undercoat
  • Long stock coat
  • “Coaties”

Does Nadelhaus sell long haired German Shepherd puppies?

Nadelhaus breeds German Shepherds puppies year round and while the majority of puppies we sell are short hair, we do have occasionally have long haired puppies. Check our Puppies & Litters page to see our current and expecting litters. We breed all our German Shepherds in the black and red color.

If you are looking for a long haired adult German Shepherd, we can also import German Shepherds direct from Europe. Contact us for more information.

We breed to the world standard, adhering to the rules of the Verein für deutsche Schäferhunde (SV). We focus on breeding our dogs for structure, movement, workability, trainability, hips, elbows, pigment, and coat in order to produce the highest quality German Shepherds. All of our dogs come with a written guarantee.

All of our German Shepherd puppies and adults are vaccinated to-date, vet-checked, de-wormed, and microchipped. They are temperament tested by a professional dog trainer. We have continuous service after the sale of our dogs.

Our German Shepherds are socialized with both humans and other dogs and are temperament-tested by a professional dog trainer. Above all, they are very much loved and it shows in the way they are raised and cared for at Nadelhaus.