There are some wonderful pedigree breeds of dogs around. So wonderful, in fact, that people can’t choose, and so cross-breeds have come to exist.
‘Crossbreed’ and ‘mixed breed’ are actually different terms, a mixed breed dog can take its genetics from multiple different breeds. Whereas, a crossbreed is a dog that takes its genetics from two pedigree breeds. Like the Shephound.
A Shephound is a dog that has one parent which is a German Shepherd, and another which is a Greyhound.
These might seem like strange breeds to mix, but both of these dogs are actually very similar to one another in lots of different ways. At least in terms of personality. But, in terms of appearance, they are very different from one another, so there is no way to tell what this crossbreed is going to look like.
In this guide, we’ll be taking a deep dive into the ‘Shephound’ crossbreed to find out more about this wonderful breed. So, if you are considering welcoming a Shephound into your home, then keep on reading.
What is a German Shepherd Greyhound mix?
Let’s kick this off by looking at exactly what a German Shepherd Greyhound crossbreed is. As we have established, this crossbreed is a mix between a German Shepherd and a Greyhound. They are both large breeds of dog, so as you would expect, the result of this cross-breeding is also a big dog.
We referred to this crossbreed as a ‘Shephound’ earlier, but they are also sometimes known as Greyhound Shepherds. These terms are used interchangeably to describe this crossbreed.
As these dogs are a mix, no two puppies will be the same. This is because it is impossible to know what personality traits and characteristics will be taken from each breed, making every dog different.
Despite this, there are a few things that you can expect from this crossbreed. The main one being its size. You can generally determine the size that a litter of puppies will grow to by looking at the parents. As both German Shepherds and Greyhounds are large breed dogs, you can rest assured that the puppies will also be large.
You can also expect them to be muscular, affectionate, and loyal. But, let’s take a look at some of the other things you need to consider before deciding if this is the breed for you.
Is this the Right Crossbreed for You?
Before you welcome any dog into your home, you need to decide if this is the right breed for you. Here are some of the key things that you need to consider before making that decision.
One of the most important things that you need to consider before buying a Shephound, or any dog for that matter, is if you have the time to dedicate to this dog.
Dogs are hard work, and they require a lot of time and effort if you want them to be well-behaved and loyal. This is especially important with Shephounds as both the Greyhound and German Shepherd breeds can be nervous at times.
A lot of this is down to the fact that both breeds have been treated badly historically. A lot of Greyhounds are traumatized from a history of being forced to race against their will, and because of this, it can take a lot of time for these dogs to adjust to being a family pet.
Likewise, a lot of German Shepherds have lived their lives as working dogs, so it can take a little while for them to adjust to being pets too. You should bear this in mind when buying a Shephound.
Another major thing that you need to consider before bringing a Shephound into your home is whether, or not, you have the space for a dog of this size.
While they may be small when they are puppies, these puppies quickly grow into large dogs, so it is very important that you have enough space in your home for them. Nothing can prepare you for quite how big these dogs are, and as they grow in your home, they can quickly shrink your house.
Of course, the dog doesn’t actually make your house smaller. But, these dogs are large and heavy, so they take up a lot of space. If you only have a small house, or you have a large but busy house, then you might want to consider if you have the physical space to give to this dog before bringing one home.
Finally, you need to consider your provisions for giving this breed professional dog training. Both Greyhounds and German Shepherds are highly intelligent dogs, so they will require training.
If you haven’t got much experience as a dog owner, then training this breed might be beyond your skill set. This doesn’t mean that this is a bad breed for you, it simply means that you will need to ensure that you have access to a professional dog trainer before you buy one.
Both Greyhounds and German Shepherds often have a very high prey drive, and this can make them very difficult to control when you are out walking them.
This doesn’t mean that they are aggressive dogs, it simply means that they are naturally driven to hunt, and this has to be trained out of them. This can be very difficult to do, which is why you should ensure that you have access to a professional trainer to help you.
Important Facts About the German Shepherd Breed
As the Shephound is a crossbreed, it is difficult to find facts about them. But, as both Greyhounds and German Shepherds are breeds that have existed for centuries, there are lots of facts that we know about these dogs. So, let’s take a look at them independently, starting with the German Shepherd.
Without a doubt, German Shepherds are one of the most striking dog breeds in the world. With just a single look, you can easily identify one of these breeds by their classic black and tan markings, wonderful gait, and simply breathtaking look.
They are famous for being one of the most loyal dog breeds to exist, and are also well-known for being fiercely protective of their owner and their pack.
These dogs absolutely adore being outdoors, and this is one of the main reasons why they make such wonderful herding dogs.
This is, after all, where their name comes from. But, these dogs aren’t solely used for herding farm animals. Instead, they are better known for being used as working dogs in the military, police, and even as support dogs for people who are blind or living with other disabilities.
The main reason why these dogs are so commonly used as working dogs is because they are so easy to train.
German Shepherds are undoubtedly one of the most intelligent breeds on the planet. Anyone who has ever owned a German Shepherd will tell you that this breed can learn a trick after only one or two goes, they simply are that smart.
When you look into a German Shepherd’s eyes, then you can see this intelligence, and it is almost as if you have another person staring back at you.
But these dogs aren’t only smart. They are affectionate, loyal, and kind. They really do make the perfect companion, and you know that you are never alone as long as you have a German Shepherd by your side.
These dogs are energetic and healthy, and absolutely wonderful with children and other pets. This is why they are one of the most popular dog breeds in the world.
Important Facts About the Greyhound Breed
It is clear that German Shepherds are a simply amazing breed, but so are Greyhounds. As we mentioned earlier, there are a lot of similarities between these two breeds, and this is why this crossbreed works so well. With that in mind, let’s take a look at some important facts that you should know about the Greyhound breed.
Just like German Shepherds, Greyhounds are also a large breed of dog. But, in terms of appearance, these breeds couldn’t be any more different from one another. In terms of height, they are very similar, but Greyhounds are a lot thinner than German Shepherds.
In fact, this breed is often referred to as the ‘skinny dog’. As Greyhounds were bred to run, they are extremely skinny, to the point where you can often see their ribs. While German Shepherd dogs are bred to be a lot bulkier.
The name ‘skinny dog’ is often misleading, suggesting that Greyhounds are underweight or unhealthy, but this isn’t the case.
Yes, Greyhounds do look very slim, but this is because they carry absolutely zero body fat. This doesn’t mean that they are all skin and bone, instead, these dogs are solid muscles. Just by looking at a Greyhound, you can see how muscular they are, and this is partly aided by the fact that they have a very short coat.
Greyhounds are most famous for being fast. These dogs have been racing dogs, and unfortunately, this practice still goes on today.
Due to the shape of their body, Greyhounds are able to reach speeds of up to 45 miles per hour, which is why they have been used to racing. But traditionally, Greyhounds were bred as hunting dogs with the ability to hunt foxes, rabbits, and even deer.
These dogs are often referred to as ‘gentle giants’ because they are incredibly soft and loving.
They are unbelievably calm, and will spend a lot of their time sleeping. Just like German Shepherds, Greyhounds are incredibly loving, and there is nothing that this breed likes more than cuddling up to their owner and giving them lots of wet kisses.
While they will be loving to all members of their pack, Greyhounds tend to choose one member to be their person, and if that person is you then you are truly blessed. They are incredibly smart, and as long as they are trained, then these dogs will not become aggressive. This is why they make such wonderful pets.
Key Characteristics of the Shephound
We have looked at these breeds independently, but it is time that we look at them together. Every Shephound is different as it is a crossbreed, however, there are some key characteristics that you can expect. Let’s take a look at what they are.
It is impossible to tell exactly what a Shephound’s coat is going to look like for lots of different reasons. One is the fact that your puppy is going to have a lot of growing to do. Both German Shepherds and Greyhounds are breeds that transform a lot during the first 6 months of their life.
So, this makes it difficult to tell what their coat is going to look like when they grow up.
It is also partly because these two breeds have very different coats. German Shepherds have incredibly thick fur, with multiple different layers, while Greyhounds have very thin coats which help make them more aerodynamic. Due to this, it is impossible to tell exactly what your Shephounds coat is going to be.
If your Shephound is a mixture of a short coat German Shepherd and a Greyhound, then you can expect the fur to be mid-way between the two. However, if your Shephound is part long-hair German Shepherd, then there is no knowing just how thick their coat will be.
Something that you can almost guarantee from a Shephound is that they are going to be gentle. Both German Shepherds and Greyhounds are docile breeds, and they are well-known for being gentle around their owners. So, this is something that you can expect from a Shephound.
But, these dogs will have moments of madness. Greyhounds are prone to ‘zoomies’ where they are very hyperactive for a very short amount of time, and German Shepherds are not exempt from this behavior.
While these dogs will be calm and gentle most of the time, there will be periods where they will be hyper. When this happens, it is important to remember that Shephounds are big dogs, and they are incredibly strong. So while they are gentle most of the time, when they are having ‘zoomies’ it is best to just leave them to it.
But there is one thing which you can definitely guarantee from a Shephound, and it is their undying loyalty. Dogs really are man’s best friend, and both of these breeds are known for their insane loyalty to the people they call theirs.
So, whether you are looking for a Shephound as a guard dog or a companion, you can always trust your Shephound to be by your side.
However, if you are looking for a dog to use as a guard dog, then a Shephound might not be the best choice.
Due to the Greyhound aspect of their breed, these dogs show absolutely no aggression, which isn’t ideal if you want to scare off potential intruders. You would be much better off choosing a pedigree German Shepherd. But if you want a dog that has your back until the end, then a Shephound is absolutely perfect.
Possible Health Concerns
So far, we’ve only really spoken about the great things about this crossbreed. But, this wouldn’t be a complete guide if we didn’t mention some negative aspects of this breed. All dogs suffer from health conditions, and the majority of breeds will have genetic predispositions to certain issues.
So, you shouldn’t let this put you off of this wonderful breed. But, let’s take a look at some common health concerns of the Shephound.
The most prevalent potential health condition that your Shephound might suffer from is joint problems.
In particular, hip and elbow dysplasia. This is a genetic condition where there is a deformity in the hip or the elbow, which can lead to limited mobility and arthritis as your dog ages. This is a common health issue for both German Shepherds and Greyhounds, which is why this is the condition that your dog is most likely to suffer with.
Both hip and elbow dysplasia isn’t unique to German Shepherds and Greyhounds. In fact, this is a condition that most large dogs, and even large cats, suffer with.
This condition is a degenerative disease, so the earlier that you pick up on it, the better. That way, you can treat it early and prevent your Shephound from suffering too greatly with this condition.
Another part of the body that both Greyhounds and German Shepherds often suffer with is their skin. Both breeds are genetically predisposed to skin conditions, so there is a fair chance that your Shephound could suffer from this too.
In particular, German Shepherds are prone to allergies, which can lead to a lot of scratching and discomfort. Additionally, German Shepherds are also prone to other skin conditions including cysts, fungal infections, and strep. But, most dogs will suffer from a skin condition at some point in their lives, so this shouldn’t be a deal breaker.
Something else that these breeds are often prone to suffering with is cherry eye. You may not have heard of this condition before, but it affects your dog’s third eyelid. Some people don’t realize it, but dogs have multiple eyelids, which makes them more prone to eye problems.
Cherry eye is a condition that affects your dog’s third eyelid. This condition displays itself as a red lump on the third eyelid. This red lump is actually an enlarged and swollen gland that has become infected due to allergies. All dogs are at risk of experiencing this, and it is a very common condition.
So, just be prepared that you might have to go to your vet to get conditions like this treated if you get a Shephound.
The final condition that your Shephound might be prone to is epilepsy. This is a condition that a lot of Greyhounds develop, so there is a small chance that your Shephound may also suffer from this. Epilepsy affects dogs similarly to how it affects humans, so if your Shephound develops this condition, then they may experience seizures.
Dogs can experience seizures with lots of different causes behind it. Some dogs will fit if they become too hot, or dehydrated. But, these seizures could be caused by a health condition such as epilepsy or diabetes. So, you should be prepared that this condition could also develop in your Shephound.
If your Shephound does begin to experience seizures, then you should seek veterinary advice immediately.
One of the biggest influences over whether you will choose a dog breed, or not, is temperament. Everybody wants their dog to have a good temperament, and for their dog to be loving. This is why a lot of people purchase dogs based on the temperament of that breed. So what is the Shephound temperament like?
As we have said, Shephounds are incredibly loving dogs, and above all else, they are loyal. Fiercely loyal, in fact. Generally, these dogs have a calm temperament, and they are usually very gentle.
Especially when they are around children and small animals. But, they can have moments of madness, ‘zoomies’ as we mentioned earlier, especially when they are not given a way to release all the energy pent-up inside them.
But, for the most part, these dogs are lovely. Walk them regularly, and train them well when they are young, and you will have a fiercely loyal companion for the rest of their life.
Ability to Train
Speaking of training, you may also be wondering how easy it is to train a Shephound. Well, as you might expect, it is usually very easy to train a Shephound. These dogs are incredibly intelligent, and because of this, they can often pick up tricks incredibly quickly.
A lot of people are surprised at how quickly Shephounds can learn commands, and people are also often surprised at how early in their lives these dogs will begin learning.
From as early as 8 weeks old, a Shepherd will begin listening to their owner and learning commands. So start early with training, and you will have a very well-behaved dog.
Other Things to Consider
Finally, here’s some additional information to think about before you welcome a Shephound into your household.
Shephounds are very large dogs, so they do have some nutritional requirements. You should avoid feeding them grains as this can lead to GDV (a bloating condition), instead you should feed them lots of protein. Make sure their diet is well-balanced with protein, vitamins, minerals, and also high in calories.
The amount of exercise that your Shephound will differ depending on your specific dog. Greyhounds only need around 30 minutes of exercise a day, whereas German Shepherds can need up to 2 hours. Find a happy medium and go with the amount of exercise that suits your dog.
These dogs are expensive. Greyhounds usually cost between $1,000 to $3,000 and German Shepherds usually cost up to $2,500. Shephounds are also very rare, so you should expect to spend anywhere in this region for a healthy German Shepherd Greyhound cross.
In short, this has been a complete guide to one of the most loving and loyal dog crossbreeds on the planet, the Shephound. So, if you are considering this breed, read this guide before you buy.