Painting - Oil Pastel On Canson Paper
Portrait of Reno, my rescued white shepherd. He's a typical white German Shepherd. He's large, at 95 pounds and stands straight and tall like the original German bred dogs, White Shepherds have always shown up in dog litters from the very beginning of the breed development to the present day but they were destroyed because some people thought the white gene carried some negative traits like aggressiveness and fear of loud noises like thunder and gun fire. etc. However the traits that could not be proven and the other colored shepherds also would exhibit those traits based on their personality traits and training and rearing. In the beginning of the German Shepherd breed the white ones were often favored by the Germans for herding and protecting the sheep herds. The theory behind it that by using the whites verses other colors predators, mainly the wolves and wild cats, could not tell them apart from the sheep. So the predator would try to advance on the herd only to be met by great dog with cunning, loyalty, strength, stamina and teeth. After that experience the predator would stay away. Also the white colored coats are camouflage during the winter months and also protect the dog from over heating in the summer sun because the white coat would deflect the suns rays rather than absorb it. Today the white dogs are their own breed and are called the American White Shepherd. I once belonged to a club of white shepherd owners during the time that dogs could not be shown for breed with other colored dogs. The club president said she did not know about the white shepherds until she needed to replace her prized obedience dog. So she looked around for a sound dog, one that could jump hurdles without developing joint issues. You see she figured that if she could find a dog with good bone ( hips and elbows) that it could compete longer. So when she looked at the white shepherd's stature compared to the other regular shepherd's she noticed that the white dog stood with a straighter back and had wider stronger looking hips. That's because no one had bred for shorter back legs. And she was right about the soundness of her white dog because he was 10 and still completing and winning the competitions. Her previous dog had to be retired at 7 because the jumps took it tole on his joints. All the white dogs are direct descendants of the original white shepherds bred and trained by the Germans to herd sheep.
May 21st, 2013
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