German Shepherd Dogs come in a variety of coat (hair) colors. They include Black & red, Black & tan, Black & cream, Black & sliver, Black (solid black), Sable (Gray), Blue, Liver, and White. The breed should have rich, strong colors. Diluted colors are not desirable. Liver, Blue and White are genetically diluted colors, and are not bred by responsible breeders.
The color of the dog is one of the less important attributes to consider when purchasing a puppy, as long as the colors are strong and well pigmented. The most critical things to consider are Temperament, Health and proper Structure. But, color is the frosting on the cake! If you can get all the other qualities, and your favorite color, too...go for it!
German Shepherd Black & tan or Black & red puppies are born nearly all black, and the colors continue to come in for the first few years of their life. The Solid Blacks are black at birth and stay that way. Sables are born all tan, and black tipping begins to come in at a few weeks old, and continues until the puppy is about 2 years old. Sables end up with 'wolf' type markings.
Black & red means the markings are darker than the traditional tan... that is there is a reddish-brown tone to the markings. This is the most popular color in Germany.
Black & tan is the traditional color popular in years past .
Black & cream is a lighter shade of tan markings.