German Shepherd Ear Chart

From the barking and body language to ear twitches, your German Shepherd has a wide range of means to convey his thoughts and feelings to you. 

You may already know that its ears are a window to its soul, but have you ever considered the possible meanings of the various ear placements on a German Shepherd through this German Shepherd ear chart?

The posture of a German Shepherd’s ears may convey various feelings, from neutral and peaceful to playful and submissive, alert and uneasy to aggressive and eager, and dominating and fearful. The dog’s ears may twitch suddenly if they are experiencing an emotional shift.

For instance, when hostile or curious, the ears will stand forward, and when friendly interest is present, the ears will arch backward.

German shepherd ear chart

The question of why dogs move their ears must be addressed before we can discuss the unique positions of the ears of a German Shepherd that convey various moods.

Dogs’ ears, unlike human ones, may be moved around by the use of voluntary muscles. Their moves with their ears are not reflexes but genuine communication efforts. German shepherds’ ear movement begs the question: why?

The German Shepherd’s ear position may be used as a sign of curiosity, submission, or aggression. Little shifts in ear position signify a more nuanced feeling, and there is often overlap between emotions and their corresponding ear position.

It’s essential to consider your dog’s ear position with other body language and behavior indicators in the context of his surroundings while trying to figure out why he’s acting the way he is.

Each possible ear location has at least two possible causes. Therefore, relying only on them might lead to an erroneous conclusion.

In what follows, we’ll take a high-level look at the potential outcomes for your dog’s ear-positioning possibilities.

German Shepherd Ear chart

GSD Ear PositionEmotions Behind GSD Ear Position
BackwardsFearful or Anxious
Dropped DownRelaxation
Directional ChangeListening to Multiple Different Sounds
Up And Down EarsGreeting

Forwards GSD Ear Position

Your German Shepherd is attentive and paying close attention if their ears are perked forward. If your dog’s ears are cocked in this position, it’s a positive sign that they feel confident.

It’s possible to see a dog’s self-assurance radiate much as it would in a human being.

Confidence exudes a confident air that can be recognized instantly. The forward-facing ears are simply one indicator of a person’s self-assurance.

“If you pick up a starving dog and make him prosperous he will not bite you. This is the principal difference between a dog and a man.” 

Mark Twain

Backward Ear Position

If your dog’s ears are pinned back stiffly, you should pay attention to this. Ears that are pinned back in this manner indicate that your dog is frightened.

Dropped Down Ear Position

If your dog’s ears appear hanging loose, that’s because they are. Eared relaxation in a German Shepherd is a good indicator of how the dog is feeling. Sentimental release.

Directional Change in GSD Ear Position: If your German Shepherd’s ears are perked up in various directions, they’re trying to take in information from various sources.

This is possible for German Shepherds because of their ability to listen to several noises at once.

Their head will be turned in one direction, but their ears move in opposite directions.

Also read: German Shepherd Colors

Up And Down Ear Position

Your German Shepherd may often welcome you and other people by wagging its tail. Ordinary German Shepherds will welcome people in this fashion. This is quite a rare case if we look at this german shepherd ear chart.

Unfortunately, interpreting a dog’s body language may be challenging if you don’t know what to look for, interpreting a dog’s body language may be a challenge.

Take into account their immediate environment and everything that can make them feel uncomfortable as you seek to comprehend them.

To What Extent Do a Dog’s Ears Influence Its Charisma?

A dog’s personality cannot be predicted by looking at its ears. It’s common knowledge that a dog’s temperament may be subtly influenced by its hereditary physical features.

The prevailing consensus is that long-haired German Shepherds have a better temperament than their short-haired counterparts and that black German shepherds have “an advantage” over the other hues.

On the contrary, there is no evidence that a dog’s temperament is affected by its ears, and how people interact with their pets has a much more significant impact on their demeanor than any other factor.

However, the function for which a dog was bred initially sometimes shows in the form of its ears. For example, the floppy ears of a Spaniel, a breed of gun dog, are perfect for catching and storing scent particles. A lot of time might be saved using this method while trying to find anything in the past.

Also read: German Shepherd eye color chart

Is There a Reason Why German Shepherds Prick Their Ears?

You may not even notice the movement when a German Shepherd Dog’s ears perk up since they aren’t floppy in most cases (with a few notable exceptions discussed below). Even yet, understanding why German Shepherds perk their ears is crucial.

When a German Shepherd is attentive, interested, aroused, or intrigued about what they hear, they prick their ears. German Shepherds, like many other dog breeds, exhibit erect ears just before attacking when they feel threatened.

Your dog may be alert or hostile based on his body language and other cues, so be on the lookout for things like growling, exhibiting teeth, sniffing, and taking notice of his surroundings. If you make a strange noise, your GSD may merely prick his ears forward and tilt his head.

German Shepherd Puppy Ear Stages

Ear development in German Shepherd puppies follows the same pattern as that seen in the rest of their body.

The age at which these milestones are reached will depend on several things, including your GSD puppy’s genetics and physical structure.

Five months is a good benchmark to evaluate whether your German Shepherd puppy’s ears are beginning to perk up; if not, you may want to take action. Keep reading for more advice on how to do that!

As your German Shepherd puppy develops from infancy to early adulthood, you’ll see a range of ear placements.

  • To start, his ears will be tiny between 0 and 7 weeks.
  • Puppies’ ears will droop to the side between the ages of 7 and 10 weeks. When this happens, both of his ears will droop.
  • From week 10 to week 14, his ears will be in a flying nun posture. His ears will still have flopped to the sides, but they will be slightly tipped upwards in this posture.
  • When he’s 14 weeks old, his ears droop to one side of his head like a comb-over.
  • His ears may turn inward into a seashell shape at about 15 weeks. Here, the ears are perked up almost all the way but not quite all the way.

One ear may fall forward while the other remains in the “one-up ear” posture. A dropped ear in this posture may be the reason for worry since it had previously perked up. However, this is a transitory condition, and your ear will eventually heal.


Finally, the position of your German Shepherd’s ears should be able to tell you a fair amount about his mental state.

Although the ears might be in various positions, it is essential to consider the surrounding circumstances before drawing any conclusions about your dog’s behavior and get help from this German shepherd ear chart.