It’s impossible to imagine two dog breeds more different than the German Shepherd and the Chihuahua. One is the prototypical working dog famous for their intelligent, loyal and hardworking natures. The other is known for their teeny tiny size, big round eyes, and as a companion to celebrities.
So, what happens when you mix the two?
Well you can’t really predict what will happen. Some German Shepherd Chihuahua mixes will have the courageous temperament and guarding instincts of the German Shepherd. Others will be quite sassy and have big personalities distinctive of Chihuahuas.
In most cases, a male Chihuahua is crossed with a female German Shepherd.
Still curious if this relatively new mixed breed is for you? Read on and find out!
So, now that you know what a German Shepherd Chihuahua is, let’s try and find out its features and origins.
As suggested, you get the German Shepherd Chihuahua breed of dogs when a German Shepherd mates with a Chihuahua.
However, as the species was discovered recently, the AKC (American Kennel Club) does not recognize them as standard dogs.
The features of this breed of dogs include large and straight ears and an apple-sized head, besides small eyes. A German Shepherd Chihuahua comes in different colors, mainly dark, such as brown or black.
Their legs are long, and they have medium-sized tails. The dog weighs between eight and 60 pounds and can grow to about seven to 45 inches tall.
Also, like many other breeds, males are larger than females and have black or brown hair.
When you talk about the origins of the German Shepherd, Horand von Grafrath was the first breed bought and registered by Captain von Stephanitz.
So, Captain von Stephanitz was the first to find this breed, and Horand von Grafrath was the first-ever dog.
When it comes to Chihuahuas, their origins are unclear, and there is no clear historical evidence that points to the origins of this breed. However, chihuahuas are the thinnest dogs, weighing under 6 lbs.
Unlike German Shepherds, they don’t grow tall and have heights capped between five and six inches.
Although you can pet any dog breed given that you socialize them properly, the German Shepherd Chihuahua mix is one of those rare breeds you probably should avoid, especially if you have young children at home.
However, if you want to pet a German Shepherd Chihuahua, you must start teaching your dog to socialize the right way from an early age.
Since the breed is known for its ferociousness given its prey drive, you must monitor it closely if you buy one.
Another thing to remember here is that this breed is wary of strangers. So, it’s best not to let anyone, such as a family member or friend, near it, as it may get feisty.
So, if you decide to buy a German Shepherd Chihuahua mixed dog breed, remember these points about petting and grooming them, and more importantly, train them early on.
Also, don’t let anyone near them, especially children, as they can get ferocious due to their prey drives.
Besides this, you can follow the standard petting and grooming procedure, such as feeding it right and taking it out for walks, to take care of your German Shepherd Chihuahua.
German Shepherd Chihuahua Mix: Breed Traits At A Glance
|Height||Weight||Appearance||Coat||Health||Family Friendly?||Temperament||Training & Exercise||Price|
|Difficult to give an exact estimate since their size can vary greatly: 7 - 45 inches tall on average||Also difficult to give an exact number since their size varies so much: 8 - 60 lbs on average||This mix will be on the smaller side. Facial appearance will more so take after the Chihuahua with large ears and smaller eyes.||The mix will have short hair that more so resembles the coat length of a Chihuahua, but the colors will typically be brown and black like a GSD. Will be prone to shedding - weekly brushing at minimum is recommended. A double layered coat is possible.||Lifespan: 9 - 20 years. Hybrid breeds' genetic diversity helps overall health, but this mix is still prone to certain problems: Hip Dysplasia, Patella Luxation, heart problems.||Yes, they can potentially be great family pets that get along with kids & other pets, but will still need basic training & socialization.||Alert, intelligent, loyal, energetic, and potentially prone to aggressiveness (despite their small stature, Chihuahuas are known to be hostile towards strangers)||This mix will be relatively athletic thanks to the GSD's genetics - they're going to need a fair amount of exercise. Aim for an hour of physical activity every day. For training, this should ideally begin in puppyhood.||Difficult to estimate, but probably on the expensive side given that each parent breed is expensive.|
From Which Origin Is the German Shepherd Chihuahua Mix?
The Chihuahua German Shepherd crossbreed is relatively new. Each breed has distant pedigrees, and will help us understand what personality the mix will have.
German Shepherd Breed Synopsis
From companion dogs, loyal pets, the army, to law enforcement, German Shepherds are the most frequently seen dog breeds globally.
They’re loved for their intelligence, athletic abilities, and loyalty.
German Shepherds are frequently bred with other dogs, particularly small ones, to create adorable, intelligent, enduring, and agile breeds.
Which was the First Registered German Shepherd Dog in Germany?
Born on January 1, 1895, the Horand von Grafrath was the first bought and registered German Shepherd by Captain von Stephanitz.
Von Stephanitz then became the originator of the breed. Horand has since had eight generations of descendants.
The Horand von Grafrath became the foremost dog to be included in the Society for the German Shepherd Dog (Verein für Deutsche Schäferhunde) breed archive in 1899.
Several attempts were made to standardize the German Shepherd breed in Germany, which all failed.
Therefore, Horand von Grafrath was discriminatorily bred with three added dogs. Their offspring were inbred to preserve desirable and essential qualities within the breed.
What Do We Know About Chihuahuas?
Compared to the German Shepherd, whose history is well-known, the Chihuahua breed’s history is less clear.
They’re the smallest recognized dog breed on Earth. With origins in Mexico, Chihuahuas are brave and have the highest curiosity and perception among all dogs.
Their intelligence is also exceptional. They’ve played a vital role in the history of breeding small dogs.
The Chihuahua’s exact origin has a lot of assumptions, though genetic testing has exposed that European annexation has wiped plenty of the pre-European genes.
So, What Can Come Out Of Mixing The German Shepherd & Chihuahua?
When you breed the two, you’ll get something quite fascinating! Here’s why for two reasons:
First, the German Shepherd and Chihuahua mix will result in a small dog (their size average). This is perfect for individuals living in a dense city environment.
Second, while preserving Shepherd’s athletic abilities, the dog will be wise and very intelligent.
They’ll have short hair, most often colored with the German Shepherd’s brown-and-black color.
Given that both German Shepherds and Chihuahuas will shed seasonally and year-round, the mix will be prone to shedding as well.
Owners should be prepared to spend some time maintaining their fur. Daily brushing is best, but weekly brushing at a minimum is recommended and will be the best way to keep your dog (and home!) clean.
The prototypical masculine German Shepherd face will likely transform into the Chihuahua’s with this mix, having large ears and small eyes.
Since the dog is a mixed breed, it could end up looking more like one of the two breeds or anywhere in between – it’s pretty much a roll of the dice!
It all depends on the parent dogs used, as well as their relative size, appearance, and upbringing.
What Appearance Does The German Shepherd Chihuahua Mix Have?
Given the unpredictable nature of mixed breeds, they can vary greatly in appearance.
The eventual adult size can fall within a wide range – it will most likely be smaller than an average German Shepherd, but most certainly larger than a Chihuahua.
It will probably have more of a typical GSD coat that’s brown in color. However, added outlines and coat colors are also possible given the unpredictable nature of hybrid breeds.
The German Shepherd Chihuahua mix will most likely have shorter hair that sheds relatively lightly compared to a purebred GSD, but this too can vary. The length of the fur will be highly dependent on the Chihuahua parent.
Also depending on the Chihuahua parent, these dogs might have one or two coatings on their fur, and like a human infant, Chihuahuas are known to have a soft spots on their heads.
This spot can disappear over time and the head will then slowly start to resemble a typical Shepherd’s head.
The German Shepherd Chihuahua Mix will have a weight of between eight to sixty pounds, and a shoulder height of between seven to forty-five inches.
What Temperament Does The German Shepherd Chihuahua Mix Possess?
These dogs should have excellent temperaments. German Shepherds are known to be territorial, fiercely loyal, and highly energetic, while Chihuahuas have a reputation for being devoted, lively, alert, courageous, and aggressive!
However, due to the unpredictability of mixed breeds, a German Shepherd Chihuahua mix’s temperament can differ greatly, and depends on how much of each breed is passed on to the puppy.
In the best case scenario, the mixed breed will be attentive, intelligent, loyal, and a perfect family pet.
In the worst case scenario, the German Shepherd Chihuahua mix can be overly territorial, loud, and aggressive. Therefore, it’s potentially unsuitable for children – ongoing training and socialization is ideal with these dogs.
According to Shop for Your Cause, the mix can become violent towards strangers and other dogs – a characteristic (believe it or not!) passed on from the Chihuahua.
In 2014, for instance, Chihuahuas terrified an Arizona town by attacking people and other dogs.
These stubborn traits have to be controlled by properly training the mixed breed starting in puppyhood.
The adopting family must also do their due diligence on the parent dogs, to make sure they’re friendly and free from potential health issues.
This violent propensity can also be curbed through early socialization. The German Shepherd Chihuahua Mix can either be very cooperative or independent – it will be up to you as the owner to show your dog what acceptable behaviors are.
Exercise Your German Shepherd Chihuahua Mix
Regardless of size, the German Shepherd Chihuahua mix requires a lot of exercises. These dogs love being engaged with their owners, especially in activities such as hikes and long walks.
Therefore, plan on a couple of average-length walks per day. If possible, also schedule an outdoor playtime. To get the exercise they need, a large fenced-in yard would be ideal.
But don’t stop there! This mix doesn’t handle being left alone for long periods very well. When left alone for too long, destructive behaviors can develop.
They love being close to their human companions as much as possible.
How fragile Is The German Shepherd Chihuahua Mix?
As much as they love exercising outdoors, this breed can be very fragile.
Although unlikely, they’re more prone to dislocating their hips and kneecaps than natural breeds.
Therefore, it’s important to constantly supervise them, particularly when they’re playing with other dogs.
How Fit Is the German Shepherd Chihuahua Mix?
When thinking about getting a dog for your home, health is one of the vital things you need to consider.
Therefore, you should try to buy your dog from a breeder who guarantees the health of your puppy by providing health assurance.
The breeding market has authentic and honest breeders who are transparent regarding the health conditions of the puppy you’re buying. Reputable breeders are second to none.
Purebred dogs have a higher probability of developing genetic and hereditary illnesses.
Since the German Chihuahua Mix is a mixed breed or a hybrid, it’ll have a better chance of staying healthy throughout its life.
Despite this, the German Shepherd Chihuahua mix is still susceptible to patella luxation or floating kneecaps.
This disorder mainly affects both older and smaller dogs. Another concern can be hip dysplasia, which affects mostly German Shepherds.
Before breeding, moral dog breeders should assess each German Shepherd to make sure they don’t pass on hip problems to their offspring.
However, elbow and hip dysplasia aren’t hazardous or life-threatening illnesses – they can definitely be managed when done properly.
The German Shepherd Chihuahua Mix is also susceptible to some heart ailments, such as congenital heart defects.
German Shepherds are more likely to develop congenital heart defects such as aortic and pulmonic stenosis, and ventricular septal defect.
Other potential ailments are patent ductus arterioles, mitral valve dysplasia, tricuspid valve dysplasia, endocardial fibro elastosis, and Fallot of tetralogy.
The congenital heart defect is a severe, hereditary ailment that puppies might acquire at birth.
These dogs are also at a higher risk of developing obesity – this is a condition that can lead to several other health problems.
Therefore, you should feed your German Shepherd Chihuahua Mix with the right foods that are coming from natural sources.
Depending on environmental factors and inherited traits, the German Shepherd Chihuahua Mix will have a lifespan of nine to twenty years.
These mixed breed dogs shouldn’t require any complex grooming requirements. Weekly brushing, regular nail clipping, and perhaps monthly bathing will do for the most part!
How To Train Your German Shepherd Chihuahua Mix
Training your German Shepherd Chihuahua Mix from an early age is very important. Although this breed is capable of being cooperative, the two breeds can also be very stubborn.
To ensure successful training, patience will definitely be required. Luckily, the German Shepherd Chihuahua Mix is an intelligent dog, easy to train, and can pick up on several commands.
Achieving positive results during training will also largely depend on the dog’s willingness to cooperate.
Potty training might be a complicated process for smaller German Shepherd Chihuahua Mixes. Since smaller dogs have smaller bladders, they’ll have to pee more often.
Therefore, training can be rather tricky, and we recommend starting crate training as early as possible.
It’ll be crucial for these mixes to learn how to be alone for longer periods of time from a young age since they have a tendency to become quite attached to their owners.
Since the breed can be wary around strangers and groups of people, it’ll be essential to get them used to these situations early on.
Can A German Shepherd Chihuahua Mix Make A Good Family Dog?
For people living in smaller houses, the German Shepherd Chihuahua Mix is perfect due to its small to medium size.
However, it’s still recommended to have access to larger spaces in order to help meet exercise requirements.
Thanks to their devotion and territorial propensities, German Shepherds make excellent family dogs. However, they can be dangerous around young children.
The same goes for Chihuahuas, but more so because of their guarding nature and smaller size.
Children have been known to unintentionally injure Chihuahuas because of their small size. A slightly bigger German Shepherd Chihuahua Mix might help avoid this.
Despite this, the mixed breed might not be ideal for families with young children.
The most important thing to keep in mind is that nothing can replace taking the time to properly train and exercise your new dog!
How Do You Rescue A German Shepherd Chihuahua Mix?
Rescuing a German Shepherd Chihuahua Mix will depend on luck. Are you dead set on rescuing this specific breed?
This can involve extensive time and research due to the continuous turnover in animal shelters.
If you’re lucky enough to find one, then the next step is making sure that its needs are cared for. This includes water, a safe home, a good sleeping room, and sustenance.
We know that German Shepherd Chihuahua Mixes are usually hesitant around unfamiliar people.
This is where patience will be especially important – you’ll have to wait for it to warm-up to everyone in the family.
Where Can I Find A German Shepherd Chihuahua Mix Puppy?
Locating a breeder dedicated to German Shepherd Chihuahua Mixes can be challenging.
Also, due to improper breeding standards, avoiding puppy mills is recommended. The same goes for pet stores – puppies found here often come from these same puppy mills.
Since German Shepherd Chihuahua Mixes are bred via artificial insemination, the best way to buy one is by finding a skilled and decent breeder.
How Do You Raise A German Shepherd Chihuahua Mix Puppy?
Ensure that training and socialization commence during the German Shepherd Chihuahua Mix’s early stages.
This will help with their aggressiveness towards unfamiliar people and protective nature.
When trained well from a young age, they can learn to be friendly with strangers. Try to keep in mind basic puppy care instructions.
What Products and Accessories Can I Buy for My German Shepherd Chihuahua Mix?
Due to the unpredictable size of the German Shepherd Chihuahua Mix, purchasing products might be complicated. Chihuahua specific toys will be ideal for a puppy, but then you can add in bigger toys as the dog grows.
Having a proper leash for each stage of your dog’s life will also be important.
Early on, a shorter leash will be best for training. As they age, an adjustable leash that gives the dog more freedom can be slowly introduced.
What Are the Pros and Cons Of Buying A German Shepherd Chihuahua Mix?
Since mixed breeds can inherit traits from either parent breed, the unknown potential health problems can be a cause for concern. They can inherit the worst qualities or the best.
However, since the breed is mixed, this will increase the overall chances of the dog being healthier in the long run.
What Are Other Similar Breeds And Mixes To The German Shepherd Chihuahua Mix?
Other dogs identical to this crossbreed include:
- Swedish and Norwegian Elkhounds
- Cocker Spaniel
- other dogs in the toy and working dog categories
For young children in your home, we recommend Golden Retrievers and Labradors.
Are There German Shepherd Chihuahua Mix Rescues?
Nationally, there are no registered rescues devoted specifically to Chihuahua German Shepherd Mixes.
But there are many rescues devoted specifically to Chihuahuas and German Shepherds across the US.
How Do I Know If A German Shepherd Chihuahua Mix Is Right For Me?
This is easy! If you have enough time for training and exercise, then the Chihuahua German Shepherd Breed is an ideal pet for you.
The opposite is also true – if you don’t have the time then this might not be the dog for you.
Also, remember to be careful if you have young children since this breed can be unpredictable if not trained properly.
If your mind’s made and absolutely wants this mix, remember to socialize your Chihuahua German Shepherd Breed puppy early and often.
If you want to know more about the differences between these two breeds, check out the article Does Size Matter? Chihuahuas vs. German Shepherds.
Frequently Asked Questions
How big will a German Shepherd Chihuahua mix get?
How big a German Shepherd Chihuahua mix gets varies dramatically. When standing, you can expect these dogs to be between 7 to 45 inches tall!
That’s quite a difference, we know, and it varies depending on the parents used to breed the dog and their lineage.
As with other breeds of dogs, male German Shepherd Chihuahua mixes tend to be larger in height and weight than females.
Typically, the mixes will weigh between 8 to 60 pounds, too, depending on their height.
However, compared to German Shepherds, the Chihuahua mix is much smaller and lighter and is better suited to those with less space in their homes and gardens.
It’s hard to give an exact number as to how tall mixed breeds will be due to the different elements and dogs in their lineage, which is why we offer a broad 7 to 45 inches height for these dogs.
Once they are fully grown, you can expect them to stay at this weight.
How much does a German Shepherd Chihuahua cost?
The exact price of a German Shepherd Chihuahua mix varies depending on the seller of the dog and the quality of the dogs used to breed.
Typically, both German Shepherds and Chihuahuas are expensive dogs to purchase, although you can often find them in shelters or rescue centers for adoption.
As few breeders create these mixed dogs, finding a price for these is difficult.
It’s best to contact a breeder directly (remember to do your research beforehand) or to contact your local rescue shelters to see if they have any available.
Seeing as German Shepherds and Chihuahuas are expensive dogs to purchase, you can expect a mixed breed puppy to be expensive.
If you are buying a dog, remember to do your research to ensure the dogs are healthy and safe and that the breeder knows what they are doing to avoid any health complications.