Although its name may sound to some as yet another "designer dog" label, the American Alsatian is not very different from more common GSD off-shoots, such as the Shiloh Shepherd, King Shepherd, Tundra Shepherd and other creations in the sense that it was developed as an alternative to the German Shepherd Dog through the introduction of other breeds into its bloodline. The American Alsatian was created in the late 1980's by Lois Denny in California, who wanted to establish a new breed of dog whose temperament, health and trainability would make it an ideal family companion. The breeds used in the program were the German Shepherd, Alaskan Malamute and the English Mastiff, although another dog served as an outcross as well, this being a Great Pyrenees/Anatolian Shepherd mix, owned by the breed founder's sister. Although rumors implying that the Sarplaninac and even a small percentage of wolf blood were employed in the development of the American Alsatian, the breed creator strongly denies such claims and offers meticulous records of all breedings in her program as proof. It wasn't until the year 2000 that this new breed has been officially unveiled to the general public, only after desired traits had been established. Supposedly a very healthy and highly intelligent dog, the American Alsatian is said to be an excellent family companion and service dog, combining the best qualities of its parent breeds, while being free of their negative traits.
Supperficially resembling a large wolf in some features, the breed is quite massive and "mastiffy" in certain regards, similar to the aforementioned Shiloh Shepherd, apart from not being as tall, as well as allowing for a greater variety of colors. The American Alsatian (Shepalute) is a strongly-boned and muscular dog, with a reasonably long back, a wide chest and sturdy legs. The large head is fairly wide, with a broad muzzle, strong jaws and moderately pendulous lips. The ears are relatively small and seen in a variety of types, although preferably fully erect. The nose must be black, but the eyes can be light, the preferred eye color being yellow for its wolf-like appearance.
The moderately short coat is thick, flat and rich, much fuller during the winter. All colors are accepted, including black-n-tan, fawn, gray and sable, with or without a black mask or small white markings, but the wolf-gray and wolf-brown are most valued. The average height is around 26 inches.
[b]The name was changed by the governing board NAAC to the American Alsatian in January 2010.[/b]
| This profile gives a very accurate description of the origin, purpose and current status of the breed. You may find some of the information published here to be different from what you will read in breed books, published encyclopedias and on other websites. Unlike the articles usually found in most of those sources, the MD breed Profiles are a result of many years of actual research and travelling around the world. However, since most of the Profiles have been written over the course of the past 15 years, some of them might need to be updated. We do not distort the information, but rather state our perspective on the breeds based on our extensive research and contributed information. If you have any additional info that you believe we might find interesting, feel free to contact us about it. Constructive is welcome - disparaging remarks are not. Enjoy!