German Shepherd Pitbull Mix: What To Expect

The German Shepherd Pitbull mix is a dog that will constantly keep you on your toes in all the best ways!

This large dog is a bundle of intelligence, love, friendliness, energy and excitement. They are a hybrid of two of the most well-known guard dogs and demand attention in their homes.

Through their goofiness, you will see a dog that will do anything to protect their family and keep them safe.

If you are ready to learn more about the German Sheppit keep on reading… We share how to tell if this is the perfect fit for your family and what to expect.

Breed Quick Facts
Height 17-26 inches
Weight 30-90 lbs
Coat Straight double coat, medium in length
Color Fawn, brown, tan, or black
Shedding Moderate shedding
Temperament Energetic, loyal, protective, smart, devoted, affectionate and faithful
Family Friendly Yes
Barks Yes, when bored
Training Easy to train
Lifespan 10 to 12 years
Price $400 to $1,000

German Shepherd Pitbull Mix

German Shepherd Pitbull Mix

German Shepherd Pitbull mixes are a mixed designer breed resulting from breeding German Shepherds and American Terrier Pitbulls together. They aren’t purebred like their parents, however they are just as spectacular in their own way.

Breeders first bred Pitbull German Shepherd mixes in the 1990s.

Their goal was to breed a highly efficient companion and guard dog that could be extremely protective, yet loving at the same time. This remains their purpose to this day.

The German Pit is a highly intelligent, active, protective, loving and diligent family pet. They love being mentally stimulated and praised. They also function as strong working dogs who love accomplishing tasks.

Due to their protective nature, and powerful appearance, these dogs are sometimes labeled as aggressive. However, unlike what the media has painted them out to be, these pitbull mixes (and other pittie breeds) typically are not aggressive at all.

Instead, they usually do quite well around other dogs and humans when trained and socialized correctly as puppies.

They are big softies with a strong exterior!

This dog is perfect for any sporty individual or family looking for an active and loyal breed. Due to their limitless energy, and constant need for activity, they are more than happy to join you on runs and outdoor adventures.

Appearance

German Shepherd Pitbull Mix

Typically a German Shepherd Pitbull mix will have two different colors in their coat, like their black and tan German Shepherd parent. However, they will sometimes come in solid colors like white and even brindle.

Their face looks similar to a Pitbull’s with a broad head, short muzzle and triangular ears that usually flop over. One feature that people love about these dogs is their lean, muscular bodies.

Unlike their German Shepherd parents, their tails aren’t bushy. Instead, they are long and thin with short to medium-length hair.

Dogs with the brindle coat color have a unique stripe-like pattern to their coat, which resembles a tiger with their red base and black stripes.

Fawn, brown, tan, and black are the most common coat colors. However, occasionally these dogs will come in gray and white.

Their colors are simple, yet beautiful and suit them very well.

Interestingly, while Pitbulls can come in up to 25 different colors, this mixed breed is only known to come in 7 that are shared by both of their parents.

Their coat length is usually short to medium and will be closer to the length of a Pitbull’s coat.

Size

A German Shepherd Pitbull mix ranges from medium to large in size, depending on which parent they take more after. German Shepherd puppies typically range in weight from 50-90 lbs., compared to 30-60 lbs. for the smaller American Pitbull Terrier.

Full grown German Shepherd Pitbull mixes can be 30-90 lbs and 17-26 inches in height.

Males are typically going to be the biggest of the litter. Pups that take more after their German Shepherd parent will also be bigger.

Looking at their parents’ size can be a good indicator of what their size will be. If they come from large parents they will probably be large too.

A 6-month-old German Shepherd Pitbull puppy can be between 20-55 lbs.

Some pups will be as big as a German Shepherd puppy at 44-57 lbs, while others will be as small as an American Pitbull Terrier Puppy at 15-35 lbs.

Origin

Breeders began intentionally breeding German Shepherd Pitbull mix puppies in the 1990s to create a fiercely loyal guard dog.

Their main purpose was to be companion animals, something which they excel at. Outside of that, this breed has also been proven to work as amazing service and guard dogs.

To understand the history of the German Shepherd Pitbull mix, it is best to start with the parent breeds.

The German Shepherd came from Germany in 1899. These dogs were bred to be an obedient herding dog, a role they maintain to this day. These hardworking dogs are also extremely common in the military and police. Some also work as skilled service dogs and guard dogs.

They are extremely good at keeping large herds of livestock away from crops and roads. The moment you give them a boundary to guard they do just that with minimal training.

American Pitbull Terriers come from the United Kingdom, where they were bred as a fighting dog for entertainment. Because of this they gained a negative reputation and became known as the “Bully breed.”

However, once Pitbulls migrated to the United States, people soon realized how caring and good-natured these dogs were around families, especially children. As a result they became known as “The Nanny Dog.”

Farmers also realized their incredible working abilities and they began using them for hunting, driving livestock, and catching semi-wild cattle and hogs.

It is not clear exactly when the German Shepherd and Pitbull were mixed together. It is thought that they may have mixed naturally over the years as they both arrived in North America in the 1900s.

Their origin is very similar to the German Shepherd Husky mix which is also thought to have been bred around the 1990s.

Temperament

The temperament of mixed breeds tends to vary puppy to puppy and litter to litter.

Generally, when you mix two dog breeds together, the variability in temperament and appearance increases to a point where the puppies are often unpredictable.

However, the parents of a German Shepherd Pitbull mix can give us a good idea of their temperament and some traits they may inherit.

The German Shepherd is a smart, courageous and confident breed. They are loving, playful, protective working dogs who are extremely adaptable. These dogs have high energy levels and constantly require mental stimulation to keep them busy and happy. When bored or lonely they are prone to being destructive and noisy.

Pitbulls are confident, strong and highly enthusiastic. They are also loving, caring, and highly effective working dogs who crave attention and have a constant zest for life. They are highly intelligent and love having work to do. When they get bored, they can also become quite noisy and destructive too.

The German Shepherd Pitbull mix will likely inherit their parent’s hard working traits.

They will also inherit their high energy level, intelligence, stubbornness and protectiveness.

They are intelligent, loving, caring, family-oriented dogs.

Like their parents, they are extremely active and love having something to do. They are typically quick to please, however they have dominant and stubborn traits that demand patience from any owner.

Proper training and socialization will create well-trained German Shepherd Pitbull pups who are loyal, fierce and loving to their families.

Some pups, even with proper training and socialization will naturally be aloof. Expect them to be friendly with their families, but aloof and watchful of strangers.

Aloofness is a trait that is very common to find in German Shepherds. They can also be highly protective of their families and have strong guarding instincts.

Puppy Price

German Shepherd Pitbull mix puppies vary significantly in price. Their price depends on whether or not they are from a breeder or shelter and if their parents are kennel club registered and pedigree.

On average a Pitbull German Shepherd mix costs around $400 to $1,000.

A German Shepherd and Pitbull mix puppy that comes from respected bloodlines, is vaccinated, and has been socialized will usually cost closer to $1,000. Puppies without kennel club parents or health checks will be closer to $400, especially if they are unvaccinated.

One of the best ways to find breeders is by searching for independent breeders online or by word of mouth.

Unfortunately, you are not going to be able to find breeders through reputable dog associations or kennel clubs.

One of the biggest reasons for this is that this breed currently isn’t recognized by traditional and well-known dog associations. Instead, the only place they’re recognized and associated is the Dog Registry of America.

Your best option is to look for independent breeders who you feel can be trusted. You should make sure you are provided with information about your puppy’s ancestry before paying a high price for them.

The general rule is a German Shepherd Pitbull mix puppy bred from pedigree bloodlines will cost more than one who isn’t.

Shelter

Local shelters are also a good place to find a Pit and German Shepherd mix.

Pitbull breeds and mixes are typically very common in rescue and adoption centers.

There are two reasons why Pitbull-type breeds are so common in shelters:

  1. Overpopulation
  2. Negative stereotypes

This problem is exacerbated by the fact that not many people want to adopt Pitbull dogs due to their negative stereotypes. Many people think of them as aggressive and dangerous due to their dog fighting and baiting history.

Because of this, the number of mixes such as the German Shepherd Pitbull mix in shelters is only growing. Adopting this beautiful breed from a shelter is an incredible way to give one a loving home.

Pitbull German Shepherd mixes which have been put up for adoption will cost significantly less than puppies. You can expect an adoption fee as low as $150.

If you want to adopt one from a rescue center then it will be easier to find them at German Shepherd or Pitbull-specific shelters, as opposed to general shelters. Even here they will most likely be listed for adoption as a Pitbull mix.

Training

Working breeds like this dog are smart and take well to training.

They are highly intelligent pets who love praise. They learn best when constantly encouraged and given positive reinforcement dog training.

Training sessions should include things such as treats and toys to motivate them. They shouldn’t be long or repetitive as this can lead to them quickly becoming bored. Try to make it as fun of an experience as you can and avoid any violence as this can lead to developing a fearful or aggressive dog.

They require consistency in their training and effective communication since they can be quite stubborn and dominant.

Proper socialization with other people and dogs early on is important to create non-aggressive dogs who are not aloof with strangers.

Studies have shown that aggression in dogs has less to do with their specific breed genetics and more to do with how well they are trained.

Health

German Shepherd and Pitbull

A healthy Pitbull German Shepherd mix can be expected to live for 10 to 12 years. This is longer than most American Pitbulls who live for around 8 to 10 years.

The good thing about hybrid dogs is that they tend to be healthier than their purebred parents. However, the German Shepherd Pitbull mix can still inherit some serious health conditions, some of which they inherit from their parents.

Their most common health issues include:

  • Allergies
  • Bloat
  • Hip Dysplasia
  • Heart Disease
  • Hyperthyroidism

This mix is typically very healthy when a keen eye is kept on their food intake and exercise and they are routinely taken for their boosters and checkups.

Care

German Sheppit

German Shepherd Pitbull mix puppies should be fed 1 to 1 ½ cups of good quality kibble daily. Adults should be fed 2 ½ to 3 cups.

Their meals should be split into two meals, one fed in the morning and the second at night.

Make sure that any kibble you feed is designed for large, working dog breeds. Working dogs are normally very active and energetic. Their food should be low in calories and high in protein to help them gain energy and support their joints.

One thing to remember is that these dogs require a lot of exercise, whether it be a nice walk, run, or a game of fetch.

A Pitbull German Shepherd mix will usually need 2 hours of exercise per day as well as lots of space to run around and play.

The good thing about a Pitbull German Shepherd mix is that if they are given a good amount of engaging, fun toys to play with, and backyard space to run around in, they are usually good at entertaining themselves throughout the day.

They will quickly become bored and destructive if they aren’t provided with an outlet for their energy.

When it comes to their grooming needs, they are not as high maintenance as other German Shepherd mixes. All you will need to do is make sure they are brushed every few days. This will help remove loose hair and stimulate natural oil production in their skin.

Due to their shorter hair they should only be bathed every few months. Too many baths can dry out their skin’s natural oils and cause skin irritation and inflammation.

Their nails should only be trimmed when needed, but this won’t be often since they are very active and will naturally grind them down.

What To Expect As Pets

The German Shepherd Pitbull mix is best suited for families who want to have fun and stay on the go! Their energy level, size and personality makes them well suited to people who love adventures.

They are also suited for families with a decent-sized house and plenty of yard space.

Any owner of this dog should love to be outdoors and have no problem putting in the work to keep their dog mentally engaged and busy.

They can be quite stubborn at times and they may be quite the challenge for inexperienced dog owners.

While they are good at entertaining themselves, Pitbull German Shepherd mixes typically prefer to be with their family. Individuals who work from home and have the time to dedicate to effective hands-on training for these stubborn pups are often the best fit for them.

They usually aren’t the best fit for people who live in apartments and do not spend a large amount of their time outdoors on adventures.

These dogs require all the attention and love in the world and are just looking for the right family to give it to them.

If you are looking for a loving dog who needs attention and would do anything to protect their family then the German Shepherd Pitbull mix is the dog for you! They will keep an active family safe, constantly on their toes and ready for adventure.

FAQs

What Do You Call A Pitbull Mixed With A German Shepherd?

German Shepherds mixed with Pitbulls go by a few different names. Typically they are called:

  • German Shepherd Pitbulls
  • Pitbull German Shepherds
  • German Pits
  • Shepherd Pits
  • Sheppits

Most of the time breeders will call them a “German Shepherd Pitbull Mix”.

How Much Does It Cost To Raise A German Shepherd Pitbull Mix?

You should expect to spend $300 to $1,500 yearly to raise a healthy Pitbull Shepherd mix. It usually doesn’t cost too much to take care of these dogs because they are a healthy breed.

If your Pit and German Shepherd mix develops hip dysplasia then their ownership costs will increase. Owners should expect to spend $1,700 per year on average on surgery, treatment and medical fees.

The cost to raise one of these puppies is going to vary depending on your pup and their health.

Summary

German Shepherd Pitbull mixes are a designer breed resulting from breeding German Shepherds and American Terrier Pitbulls together.

They were first bred around the 1990s to create a fiercely loyal guard dog.

If you are an active family who wants a guard dog that is a big softie and loves adventure, then the German Pit is perfect for you! However, you must be willing to keep them mentally and physically stimulated and put up with their stubbornness.

Their energetic, friendly, loving, caring, intelligent, and family-oriented nature makes them one of the best family dogs. They enjoy a good day of hard work and fun and will constantly strive to make you proud.

Although this breed isn’t for everyone, for the select few it is not hard to see how their beauty and strength are easy to fall in love with!

If you invite one into your household, it is safe to say that you may never be able to live without him.

More German Shepherd and Pitbull Mixes

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