This is a subject that has prompted questions, been discussed, and written about thousand or millions of times. With all of this I ( Edward Denny ) have never read a correct response. The fact is that these terms ” Working ” and ” Show ” lines are INCORRECT terminology !! These words are used by Americans as a result of ignorance or envy. These words have also been used in Europe for several years now for the same reasons.
So the TRUTH- ALL Authentic GSD’s are Working dogs. Part of the Euro Breed standard ( good breeders in America are following this standard ) is that the dog has to be able to work before they can be bred. Because the West German Species of the Authentic GSD is also bred for confirmation, and judged for good conformation during some working events, they are INCORRECTLY referred to as ” Show ” lines. This term was created by breeders and owners of the East German DDR GSD, and as a result of Envy. Envy because the West German GSD, is just a more attractive, more refined dog with a higher level of mental functioning. East German dog Owners then refer to their dogs as ” Working ” dogs. We will make an example here as to how this incorrect terminology was started. Let’s say that a person with a 1985 pick-up truck sees another person with a 2018 Diesel 4X4 pickup truck which is shiny, has leather seats, produces 400 HP and 500 lb-ft of torque, and the first truck owner states- ” That’s just a show truck ”. When West GSD’s began showing up at working dog events back in the 1960’s and 70’s, that was the attitude of East GSD’s Owners and thus how all of this was started. So there is NOT actually a Working and a Show line. There is an East GSD and a West GSD, and both are working dogs, with the West GSD also bred for conformation in addition to Work, and thus also judged for it. Most people who use this incorrect terminology now are probably not doing so as a result of envy, they are doing it out of ignorance, thus just repeating what they have heard.
Since Vom Zeder Haus owns and breeds the West GSD, we will make it clear here that East GSD’s are EXCELLENT dogs !! They just do not possess the confirmation and refinement of West GSD’s.