Liver GSD info


As always color is the icing on the GSD cake

 The liver German Shepherd Dog (GSD) has been kept undercover for far too long.  Some breeders thought that another male had gotten to their female and the resulting brown looking puppy was a mutt.  Others knew what they were and put them down as they did not want anyone to know they were producing anything other than traditional colored shepherds.  

However, with the canine genomic project and strong breeders who stood their ground for this color of GSD, they are beginning to be seen in several countries. I have always admired the liver coloration and wanted to incorporate liver into my breeding program; however, I found it to be difficult in the beginning to find them especially with AKC full registration as the breeders that did allow them to live, only sold on limited registration for fear that they were not as healthy as their colored siblings. I came across a litter of four liver female puppies and between myself and my best friend, Dawn, we rounded up three of the four, and the last sister went to a fellow liver lover.  

My search was far from over since the liver gene is inherited autosomal recessive I had to find a male that carried liver or was liver himself.  Finally, I found an awesome four year old male, Dutch, for sale.  His owner drove him to my kennel and I was in love as he is a big social, warm, gentle giant but will protect in a heart beat. Shortly after I found him, the liver pups arrived and I knew I wanted to go with chocolate names for my liver shepherds. Chocolate is a much more flattering word for these majestically colored GSD.  

Liver that I have owned or still own listed below: 


  • Godiva - Liver / tan long coat female - now retired
  • Carmella - Liver sable, Daughter to Rusty & Cinnamon - now retired  
  • Russell   Stover - Liver / tan long coat male; thought to be retired but producing unregistered puppies now with Brandy Ketchen, who was to alter him and not use him for breeding.  She violated our agreement.  
  • Toffifay - Liver / tan long coat female, only related to her brother: Russell Stover - now retired 
  • Lindor - Solid liver male, same sire as Russell Stover & Toffifay - retired
  • Kahlua -  long coat liver/tan female - sister to Mudslide, resides here
  • Mudslide -  long coat liver/tan male - brother to Kahlua, retired to another kennel
  • Brownies -  long coat liver/tan female - retired
  • Puddin - liver (without tan) with Panda pattern, resides here, one of our studs, son of Lindor & Pandarina

How did liver get into the GSD gene pool?

 Liver GSD are a naturally occurring color within the GSD gene pool.   The color has been apart of the original gene pool from the start.  The color is listed on the registration certificate as the GSD club within AKC recognize that this is a color that is carried by many GSD and should be acknowledged as it’s genetic coloration.  The puppies born a brown chocolate color are registered as Liver. 

Shades of Liver


The gene that causes the brown (liver) coloration on the GSD is the B gene.  It is a recessive gene and in many pedigree's.  In order for a GSD to produce Liver, both parents must pose the b gene.  Brown is incomplete black. unlike blue, (which is a dilution of black), brown is not a dilution.  
Thus giving all areas of the GSD that would normally appear black be a chocolate color.  The shades of liver ranges from a milk chocolate/cinnamon color to a semi sweet rich dark chocolate color. Since the colors and patterns are separate, they can come in all patterns: saddle back, bi-color, sable, solids, and various patterns.   
So, if Chocolate is your forte’, then you   have come to the right place.               Pedigree’s are available upon   request 
One of the goals with our Liver GSD matings is to increase the limited gene pool, create more liver carrier GSD, work to produce Isabella, and to produce the color liver itself. 
We are looking forward to meeting like minded people that want to work with the dilutes as well.We are open to discussing medical and color questions for anyone interested. We can now send in DNA of any GSD to a lab and have it tested to see if it carries the ‘liver’ gene.