A gentle dog for a gentle hand” – that is how one WSS breeder best describes the character of this dog breed.
Because the WSS is quite a young breed, it is hard to describe its character in a few sentences. You can meet individuals of this breed that are timid and dogs which are confident and longing for contact with people.
According to the standard, the WSS is described as a sensitive family dog and exceptionally friendly towards children. It is a careful guardian and eager to learn as a working dog. Very few breeds are described in their standard as “gentle with children” because this can awake inappropriate expectations by their owners. The WSS is in that sense truly exceptional.
Although the WSS is often only a companion dog, we cannot forget that this is a shepherd. Its problem-free upbringing is only possible under the condition of appropriate training and proper attention.
A dog of this breed will always try to be near his owner and is especially sociable, so he can’t be kept in a kennel or as a lonely guard dog. Because of his exceptional vigilance, he is great as a watchdog around the house with his family. He will warn his owner early and loudly if anything is happening.
A certain distance towards strangers can have place [JES1] for a WSS, and it is described in the breed standard. But this shouldn’t be mistaken for timidity.
A WSS should have temperament, but never be a nervous dog. As a real shepherd, he needs work and entertainment.
Dogs of this breed are eager to learn, so it is no wonder that you can find them in different dog sports and as working dogs.