From its origination, the German Shepherd has been widely considered to be one of the most intelligent and versatile breeds. One of the more popular breeds in the United States today, German Shepherds are clever, hard-working dogs, and are the breed most often used by the police and military because of their ability to learn quickly and their incredible bravery. These good-natured, devoted dogs make excellent pets for individuals and families, and tend to be protective of their family. German Shepherds do best with plenty of exercise and stimulation, and are happiest when given a job to do. Full grown, German Shepherds are fairly large. They have a dense coat and come in both long hair and short hair varieties.