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German Shepherds: We Are Legend

THE SUCCESS of Will Smith’s latest blockbuster, I Am Legend, has led to a marked increase in the popularity of German Shepherd Dogs according to Anita Guy. Anita has over 20 years experience in breeding, showing and working GSDs and says that the breed are ‘…great companions and would give their life for their owner’ so she was not surprised to see them chosen as the dog to star alongside Will Smith in the Sci-Fi thriller now out on DVD. Since the film’s launch in the cinema in December 2007 enquiries for both GSD puppies and older dogs has ‘gone through the roof’ Anita commented.

German Shepherds - We are legendWill Smith is reported to have been so taken with his canine co-star Abbey, who played Samantha in the film, that he would have liked to take her home at the end of filming. It is rumoured he has now got weekend visitation rights to the dog!

Battersea Dogs and Cats Home has seen a decrease in the numbers of GSD and GSD cross breeds handed in recently, and whilst this is obviously positive, a spokesperson for the charity was keen to remind potential owners not to get carried away by the romanticised image on the screen. ‘Too many people rush into getting a dog after falling in love with them on the big screen choosing a breed that isn’t suitable for them. Do your research before you get a dog on what is the most suitable breed for you, your family, home, environment and lifestyle and remember dog ownership is a commitment that can last up to fifteen years!’

It is not just GSDs that have benefited in a popularity boost following an on screen appearance. Fish sales soared after Finding Nemo was in cinemas a couple of years ago, and recently pet rats have also seen a surge in interest following the release of Ratatouille.

Lets hope the love affair with all the screen idols continues and we don’t see a rise in abandoned pets once the initial fascination wears off. Anyone else remember all those terrapins ‘released’ into ponds and streams in the 80s when Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle fever went sour and families suddenly realised they had taken on a long term commitment to an animal little Joe and Janey no longer wanted to play with.

For now though we can safely say the German Shepherd is a legend as a pet, with, or without, the handsome Mr Smith as a sidekick.