If you are familiar with the German Shepherd Dog, then it comes as no surprise that she is a popular choice to become the parent of any number of hybrid or designer dogs.
German Shepherd fans enjoy thinking about how you can tweak coat type, work ethic, stamina, herding ability, and intelligence.
When a German Shepherd outcrossing enhances the quality of offspring as pets, we call the blend a success.
Many German Shepherd mixed dogs are excellent pets and sought after by the public.
We chose 15, marked by asterisks, of the most popular or well-known German Shepherd mixes.
- German Shepherd Rough Collie Mix*
- German Shepherd Corgi Mix*
- German Shepherd Border Collie Mix
- German Shepherd Australian Shepherd Mix
Working and Guard Duties
- German Shepherd Doberman Pinscher Mix*
- German Shepherd Rottweiler Mix*
- German Shepherd Pitbull Mix*
- German Shepherd Belgian Malinois Mix
- German Shepherd Siberian Husky Mix*
- German Shepherd Akita Mix*
- German Shepherd Dutch Shepherd Mix – rare
Hunting Prowess and Levelling Temperament
- German Shepherd Labrador Retriever Mix*
- German Shepherd Golden Retriever Mix*
- German Shepherd Beagle Mix*
- German Shepherd Rhodesian Ridgeback Mix
Companionship and Smaller Size
Cute Teddy Bear Appearance
- German Shepherd Chow Chow Mix*
- German Shepherd Bulldog Mix
- German Shepherd Sharpei Mix
- German Shepherd French Bulldog Mix
Larger Size, Sometimes Health, Service Dogs
- German Shepherd Alaskan Malamute Mix
- German Shepherd Bernese Mountain Dog Mix
- German Shepherd Great Dane Mix
- German Shepherd Great Pyrenees Mix
- German Shepherd Newfoundland Mix
A German Shepherd regularly contributes good qualities
As one of the most versatile and popular dog breeds worldwide, it is not surprising that many fanciers seek to add an element of excellence to their dogs by mixing them with German Shepherds.
Do you ever wonder what specific qualities a GSD might contribute to another breed? You probably will readily recognize at least a few desirable characteristics.
- Guarding instinct – German Shepherds consistently rank among the top guard dogs.
- Athletic – German Shepherds are among the fastest dogs after sighthounds
- Work drive and enthusiasm
- Beauty and presence
What is the first thing you think when someone says GSD? Do you immediately picture a police dog or do you think back to the movie appearances of Rin Tin Tin or Strongheart? German Shepherds can perform a seemingly endless list of tasks and activities.
- Police – Pursuit, drug-sniffing, bomb detection, apprehension of perpetrators
- Military – combat, mine detection, messengers, ambulance assistance, border patrol
- Guide for the blind
- Physical assistance dog
- Shutzhund and protection work
- Herding trials
- Search and rescue
German Shepherd Labrador Retriever Mix
The Labrador Retriever is a medium to a large-sized dog that originated in Newfoundland in the 1500s, according to Biljac. The Labrador’s ancestors were the St. John’s Water Dog which was an outcross of the Newfoundland with small water dogs.
Labrashepherds are usually black or black and tan with occasional livers or chocolates possible. They have semi-prick ears, are about 70 to 95 pounds, and stand 22 to 27 inches tall.
Shepherd Labrador mixes have a medium-short, dense, and water-repellant double coat, are fairly compact, and have a rather long semi-brush tail they carry low except when active.
Your Labrashepherd will be a harmonious blend of the playfulness and affection of the Lab with the watchfulness and loyalty of the GSD.
The mix is active with less intensity, drive, and aggression than the purebred Shepherd. Labrashepherds are good watchdogs with an affinity for activities like agility and dock diving. They are intelligent and easy to train.
- Good with children
- If socialized young, friendly with other dogs
- Loyal and affectionate
- Playful and energetic – needs 90 minutes of exercise a day
Shepradors continue to reign as among the most popular of mixed breeds. Many are black and tan like this dog, but some may be yellow or chocolate.
Note the classic mix of features with the semi-prick ears, medium muzzle and round head, broad chest, and slightly elongated trunk. Dogs commonly are black and tan like this mix, but Shepradors can also be yellow or even chocolate.
German Shepherd Golden Retriever Mix
Lord Tweedmouth has received most of the credit for developing the Golden Retriever from a yellow retriever-type and a Tweed Water Spaniel.
Hower, Grca theorizes the Golden Retriever may have originated as early as the 1840s from Red and White Setters. Goldens evolved from tracking to retrieving waterfowl.
According to Dogtime.com, fanciers began actively promoting the Golden Shepherd as a designer breed about 2009. Golden Shepherds are similar in size to the Labrashepherd at about 21 to 26 inches tall and 60 to 85 pounds.
Golden Shepherds are often honey brown to light tan in color with or without the remnants of a black facial mask. Your Shepherd mix will have drop ears and a lightly feathered tail to blend with her medium-long silky hair and a thick undercoat.
Your Golden Shepherd will excel at agility, obedience, tracking, and possibly either herding or retrieving.
- Affectionate and loyal
- Active – 60 to 90 minutes of exercise daily
- Friendly – good with other dogs, children, and visitors
- Effective watchdog – not aggressive if well-socialized
- Very trainable and high intelligence
German Shepherd Siberian Husky Mix
Gerberian Shepsky or Shepsky
The Siberian Husky originated in eastern Siberia about 3,000 years ago pulling sleds of supplies for hunters or herders amongst the Chukchi people. Huskies gained their fame for sled racing shortly after they arrived in Alaska in 1908.
Siberian Huskies are medium-sized dogs with tremendous strength and stamina. They are about 23 to 26 inches tall and range from 40 to 70 pounds. While intelligent, they can be difficult to train with an independent nature. They are friendly but may take a little time to warm up to strangers.
Shepskies are compact dogs standing 21 to 25 inches tall and weighing 50 to 85 pounds. They may be black and tan, black and white, white with black patches, or red and white.
Your Shepsky will have upright ears, a short to medium-length double coat, striking facial markings, a semi-curled tail, and blue, golden, brown, or bi-colored eyes. Rare individuals may have one blue and one brown eye.
German Shepherd Husky mixes are intense with hidden talents in flyball, agility, and sledding. They may have a stubborn streak when it comes to training and can be aggressive with other dogs. Shepskies make great playmates for older children but are not ideal in the vicinity of small animals.
- High energy – needs 2 hours of exercise daily
- Very smart – more challenging to train than retriever mixes
- May have guard potential
- Working dog first
German Shepherd Rottweiler Mix
Shottie, Rottweiler Shephard, Shepweiler, or Rottie Shepherd
Rottweilers originated from Mastiff-types that were in existence as livestock guardians and later drover dogs as early as 74 AD across the Roman Empire. Drovers were dogs who followed behind livestock handlers and their herds of cattle and helped drive them to market.
Later in Germany, Rottweilers not only herded cattle to the auctions but also pulled carts of butchered meat.
Rottweilers are large universally black and tan dogs with drop ears and a strong guarding instinct. They are 22 to 27 inches tall and weigh 80 to 130 pounds.
Shepweilers are 22 to 27 inches tall and weigh 75 to 115 pounds. Your Rottie Shepherd will most likely be black and tan or mahogany with brown markings more variable than the stereotypical pattern of the Rottweiler or saddle of the GSD.
The mix can also be cream or sable and will have erect or semi-prick ears, a thick medium-short coat, a broad face, and a solid rather square build.
Shepweilers are very active and intelligent. Your Shepweiler’s strong will can make her somewhat difficult to train. Rottweiler Shephards should do well with police work, Shutzhund, herding trials, and tracking.
- Protective and territorial
- Potentially dog aggressive
- Active – 90 to 120 minutes of daily exercise
German Shepherd Pug Mix
According to the American Kennel Club, the Pug originated in China in 400 BC as a pampered pet for royalty. They have retained their status as esteemed family companions and remain highly popular in the United States.
While their ears can be upright, semi-prick, or drop, most Shugs have a tail that tightly curls over their backs. The Pug parent limits the Shug’s size to 11 to 15 inches tall at the shoulders and between 45 and 55 pounds.
Your Shug will probably be tan with a black facial mask but could also be silver fawn, black, and tan, or brindle. You can observe the Pug in the shortened face and the Shepherd in the slightly elongated frame.
Shugs is eager to please but may not be as quick to pick up commands as the purebred GSD. They are not as active as their German Shepherd parents and their short coats are a little easier to maintain.
- Friendly with children, other dogs, and guests
- Fair watchdogs
- Affectionate and need constant human companionship
- Require 30 to 60 minutes of daily exercise
German Shepherd Rough Collie or Scotch Collie Mix
The Rough-Coated Collie has unknown ancestry but was a herding dog of Scotland as far back as 1790.
The Collie German Shepherd mix began gaining momentum as a designer dog in the 1990s. Breeders promoted the Shollie for his relatively calm demeanor and easy trainability. The Shollie is a mix for which you can find multi-generational crosses. In such cases, a breeder crosses a Shollie with purebred Collie and then breeds that dog to another Shollie.
- May be good with children
- Effective watchdogs
- Need 1.5 hours of exercise every day
- Very intelligent and trainable
This is one of the rare videos of a Rough Collie GSD mix as many Shollies are moving towards the use of the Border Collie. This mix has the body shape and ears of a Scotch Collie and the rather square muzzle and coloration of a German Shepherd.
Your Shollie will have upright or semi-prick ears and medium-long, thick fur with a rather long and narrow muzzle. Many Shollies have a ruff of long fur around their necks to the front of their chests.
Shollies are sable, black, black and tan, blue, black and white, or brindle. With subsequent generations, you will get more sable and white dogs with the classic Collie color and pattern.
Note sable collies are usually predominantly shades of red and brown while sable German Shepherds are grayer with browns and yellows. Both can have black-tipped hairs.
Sable in a Collie
Sable in a GSD
Sable German Shepherds can have more reds but note the stark contrast with the Collie where the presence of different color shades is much more subtle than Shepherds.
German Shepherd Poodle Mix
The Doodle designer dogs stormed the US beginning in the 1980s but started long before with the Cockapoo in the 1960s.
Labradoodles, born around 1989, solidified the concept of designing dogs around desirable traits from two or more breeds.
Poodles were front and center of many breeding programs because of their curly hair which created a softer coat that was relatively low-shedding.
Many breeders promote poodle crosses as hypoallergenic although experts heatedly contest the existence of a dog that is easy on allergy sufferers.
Poodles have an unclear history, but a reasonable theory says they originated from the German strain of a French waterdog, the Barbet, that both retrieved and pointed.
The earliest Poodles were retrieving ducks as early as the 1600s and would inherit the Barbet’s joyfulness, intelligence, agility, tolerance of icy water, and coveted curly coat.
Shepadoodles are 15 to 26 inches tall at the shoulders and weigh 50 to 80 pounds. They can have variable coat types, most of which are moderately dense and wavy with a medium to sparse undercoat.
Shepadoodles are commonly black and red or tan, black, and silver, sable, or solid black. They usually have drop ears, a round face, a compact frame, and a medium-long bushy tail.
Using a Miniature or Toy Poodle may produce a smaller Shepadoodle, but the results are unpredictable.
If you have a Shepadoodle she will potentially be a great watchdog with tremendous loyalty and affection.
- Does well with children and other dogs
- Intelligent and obedient
- Needs lots of exercises – 1.5 to 2 hours daily
- Lively and charming
A smaller solid black Shepadoodle illustrates the German Shepherd form from topline to the tail and how the Poodle parent affects the hair. Many Shepadoodles look like this dog but are larger. Poodle drop ears are predominant in Shepadoodles.
German Shepherd Chihuahua Mix
Named for the Mexican state from where he originated in the 1850s, the Chihuahua is the smallest dog breed. Historians theorize the Chihuahua’s main predecessor was the silent, long-haired Techichi or Alco, developed by the native Toltec people.
When the Aztecs conquered the region occupied by the Toltecs, they and subsequently Spanish conquerors refined the Techichi into a five- or six-inch dog that weighed one to five pounds.
Other experts surmise the Chihuahua’s ancestors, like so many other breeds, came from Europe and more specifically, Malta.
Chihuahuas were originally companion animals but may have occasionally also served as a meal source and sacrificial offerings in Mexico, similar to the Techichi. They are loyal but fiercely protective and wary of strangers.
Shepherd Chihuahua mixes need a heavy emphasis on socialization to prevent shyness or excessive aggression. They are 10 to 20 inches tall and can weigh 12 to 60 pounds.
They have short or medium-length fur often with only a thin undercoat. Shepherd Chihuahuas are usually black and tan, sable, or solid tan with a black facial mask. They have half-prick or rose ears.
- Can be snappy with children and strangers
- Good guarding potential
- Dominant personality – can be challenging to train
- Active – require 60 minutes of daily exercise
German Shepherd Corgi Mix
Corman Shepherd, Corgi German Shepherd, or German Corgi
German Shepherds can make a successful cross with either Corgi type, but more commonly the popular Pembroke Welsh. Both the Cardigan and Pembroke Welsh Corgis developed in different areas of Wales in 1200 BC and 1107 AD respectively.
Cardigans had an ancestor in common with the Dachshund while Pembrokes were the result of crosses between Spitz types and the existent Cardigan. Both dogs were well-suited as heelers of cattle.
Even as the Pembroke became a distinct Corgi breed, crossbreeding occurred well into the 1930s. Cardigans also saw outcrossing to Welsh Sheepdogs when shepherds from the region shifted from cattle to sheep.
According to Dogtime.com, intentional crossbreeding of Corgis and German Shepherds started as late as the 2000s in the US to add protectiveness and charisma to the respective breeds.
Corman Shepherds exhibit the shortened legs of the Corgi with upright large ears, a dish-shaped skull, and a hint of a fox-like expression. They have a short dense double coat that ranges from black and tan to gold and white to tricolored black, brown, and white.
- Friendly but have a strong guard instinct
- The tendency to get along with kids and other dogs
- May have a strong predatory drive against small critters
- Require a lot of exercise and mental stimulation – 1.5 to 2 hours each day
- Intelligent with mild stubbornness
German Shepherd Akita Mix
A natural monument of Japan as of 1931, the Akita is an ancient breed that originated in the snowy mountains around 1000 AD. Originally they hunted big game but were prominent in dogfighting in the 1600s.
Japan restricted Akita ownership to nobility, including the Samurai, through the 1800s.
German Shepherd crossbreeding began around World War II in an attempt to save nonmilitary dogs from a widespread national culling effort.
Shortly after, Japanese Akitas saw a restoration project to reinstate the original Akita type and deviated from the American dog in a distinction that would persist into modern times.
Japan recognizes the American and Japanese Akitas as separate breeds as do most other countries besides the US.
Most often, the modern Shepkita is a cross between the American Akita and GSD. Shepkitas are not quite as large as their Akita parents, standing from 22 to 27 inches tall and weighing 60 to 85 pounds.
You can expect a plush double coat and a curled tail, upright ears, and a moderately triangular-shaped head. Most will have a black mask and can be black and tan, fawn, blue, brindle, black, or pinto. Some may be solid white.
Shepkitas need a self-assured owner, rigorous training and socialization, and a physical outlet to moderate territorial and protective behavior.
- Intelligent and strong-willed, independent-minded
- Natural guard dogs
- Need 90 minutes or more exercise a day
- Athletic – make good dogs for military and police work
German Shepherd Wolf Mix
Wolfdog or Wolf Hybrid
One of the most commonly used domesticated dogs in the wolf hybrid is the German Shepherd. Many times people seek to cross wolves with dogs that most closely resemble the wild pack animals. These same people seek an exotic-looking dog that seems wild but still behaves like an amiable pet.
Wolf hybrids do not always make the most cooperative pets, often displaying fearfulness, aggression, prey drive, and dominance for several generations regardless of the percentage of domesticated dog that is present.
Wolves have crossed with dogs long before humans chose to interbreed them. Frequently as a result of decimated wolf populations, Grey Wolves and Ethiopian Wolves have voluntarily bred with certain populations of herding dogs.
Registries recognize two Wolfdogs after generations of conscientious breeding. The Czechoslovakian Wolfdog or Czechoslovakian Vlcak originated from an outcross of the Czech working line patrol GSD and the Carpathian Wolf.
Due to poor trainability, hopeful experimenters abandoned the project but continued to develop the breed. Presently, the breed proclaims a 6.25%:92.75% wolf: GSD ratio.
Saarlos-wolfdogs are closer to 25% Eurasian Wolf and are the result of an attempt to create a better working dog in the GSD by introducing wild blood. Similarly to the Czech experiment, the hopes for improvement in working ability failed.
Wolf hybrids that involved individual wolf and dog crosses became popular in the 1950s. To this day wolf hybrids remain in fairly high demand.
- Some are good companions
- Poor trainability, highly intelligent
- High wanderlust
- Very predatory
- Sexual maturity leads to struggles with self-identity and position in the family hierarchy
- Heavily regulated or banned in multiple locales
German Shepherd Beagle Mix
The Beagle is a British breed that originated in the 1830s from suspected contributions from the Harrier, Talbott Hound, Southern Hound, and others. Beagles have developed into a specialized rabbit and hare hunters.
They have remained popular for their enthusiastic and stable demeanor and ability to get along with people, children, and other dogs.
Beagle German Shepherd mixes combine the superior scenting abilities of two breeds and excel in tracking, search and rescue, agricultural inspections, and bomb and drug detection. They also show potential in agility and flyball.
Beagle Shepherds are medium in size, 15 to 24 inches tall, and weighing 20 to 50 pounds. Mixes have a short coat that may be tricolor, white, black, black and tan, or silver. Ears are high-set but folded over, the face is slightly elongated, and the body is compact.
- Keen sense of smell
- Gets along with strangers, kids, and other dogs
- High prey drive
- Very intelligent but also distractable
German Shepherd Doberman Mix
Louis Doberman was a tax collector who conducted a door-to-door business on foot. He decided he needed a guard dog to accompany him, able to intimidate reluctant debtors and having the stamina to keep up with his daily routine.
He selected a wide mix of different breeds to create the Doberman Pinscher, including the German Pinscher, Old German Shepherd, Great Dane, and Rottweiler. Refinement of the Doberman occurred in the late 1800s.
The Doberman Shepherd at 22 to 26 inches tall and over 100 pounds is among the larger German Shepherd mixes. She will have a short coat that is solid black or black and tan with a long powerful tail, a leggy appearance, half-prick or upright ears, and an elegant air. Doberman Shepherds are loyal with a great working drive.
- High guarding potential
- Athletic and strong
- May be dog aggressive and chase small animals
- Intelligent and obedient with a confident and experienced handler
German Shepherd Chow Chow Mix
Chow Shepherd or Sheprachow
Chow Chows are one of the primitive dog breeds, stemming from East Asian indigenous canines perhaps as early as 6,000 BC. They retain unique features such as 44 instead of 42 teeth and a blue-black tongue. The Chow Chow’s original purpose was as a guard dog for royalty, hunting, and a human food source.
Similar to the Shepkita, the Sheprachow is a large dog with a balanced frame and a tail that curls over the back. Chow Shepherds are 22 to 26 inches tall and weigh 50 to 90 pounds.
A Sheprachow has a characteristic wedge-shaped head with relatively small triangular upright ears, a wide slightly shortened muzzle, and a shaggy double coat. She can be varying shades of tan, red, white, or cream and commonly has a black facial mask.
Chow Shepherds are excellent guard dogs and form their strongest bonds with one person.
- Protective and loyal
- May hunt small animals
- Intelligent, can be stubborn
- Exercise caution with small children
German Shepherd American Pit Bull Terrier Mix
Coming out of the Bull and Terrier lines from Great Britain in the 1800s, the American Pit Bull Terrier became among the most proficient fighting dogs of all time and remains one of the strongest pound-for-pound canines.
However, the Pit Bull’s athleticism makes her much more than a fighter, and she, in fact, proved useful in general farm work in the US in the early 1900s.
Pit Bull Terriers continue to add versatility to other breeds and complement many of the best traits of the GSD.
Pit Bull Shepherds are about 18 to 25 inches tall and can weigh 50 to 80 pounds. Their fur is short and is brown, tan blue, black and tan, or black, all colors with varying degrees of white markings. Good activities for Pit Bull Shepherds are agility, flyball, Shutzhund, tracking, and Frisbee.
- Need close to 2 hours of daily exercise
- Training and socialization are vital to address potential aggression
- Can be dog and animal aggressive
- Guarding tendencies and suspicion of strangers is from the GSD side mostly
- Loyal and affectionate with family
A few German Shepherd mixes are worth an honorable mention
It is impossible to elaborate on the virtues of every German Shepherd mix but a few may catch your notice.
- Alaskan Malamute – The Alaskan Malamute has provided the foundation for the Shiloh Shepherd and subsequently King Shepherd, designer dogs promoted for size and better hips and disposition than show line German Shepherds.
- Shar-Pei – The German Shar-Pei has reduced wrinkles and is an excellent guard dog.
- Bernese Mountain Dog – The Euro Mountain Sheparnese is a large service dog that lends a steady and friendly temperament and additional size and colors.
- Great Dane – Dane Shepherds make good pets for active families with plenty of space.
- Pomeranian – The Pomeranian Shepherd mix is a sharp-looking companion.
- Rhodesian Ridgeback – German Shepherd Rhodesian Ridgebacks often have a distinguishing ridge of hair along their spines and are large and powerful dogs.
- Australian Shepherd – Australian German Shepherds are active workers that are often lucky enough to inherit merle coloration patterns.
- Border Collie – Also called Shollies like the Rough Coated Collie mix; Breeders are more often turning to Border Collies for this mix because of their herding ability, agility, and smaller size.
- Bulldog – The German Shepherd can improve leg length and muzzle proportion in the English and French Bulldogs. Some breeders also cross German Shepherds and American Bulldogs to produce a formidable guard dog.
- Great Pyrenees – Creates a large companion dog.
- Rat Terrier – A small to medium-sized mix with a high predatory instinct.
- Newfoundland – The New Shep is suitable for search and rescue and as a service animal.
Here you can see a black and white Shollie with possible brindling who has a Border Collie as one of the parents. Both parent breeds show up in the personality and appearance of the dog.