Breed Type - Is it possible to have half a dozen different types of GSD in a typical class of say a dozen dogs? The answer is its not possible! Is it possible to have such a number but of a different style? The answer is yes!
The word 'type' is very often incorrectly used instead of 'style' to refer to an identifiable 'style of appearance'. The word type in reference to a dog refers specifically to the description of what defines that breed and what makes that breed of dog different from every other breed, as can be found in that breed's written Standard. When comparing dogs of the same breed, you look at type first and foremost, and then you look for different styles of dogs within that breed. The term style refers to characteristics that are different in each dog that already has breed type. There can be a vast variety of styles existing in each breed of dog. These characteristics develop from a breeder's desire to create a distinct 'look' (or style) within their line. Breeders create their own style within their line, being careful not to stray from breed type.
Semantics many would say, and the word style will never replace the word type in the show dog sport, but for me it is not semantics, and the reason I say that is because when one uses the word 'type' in general terms, terms that for some people, even though they might not even realize it, are referring to a dogs colour, changes in type can take hold because there is no red flag indicator at work.
Breed type change