Welcome to our complete guide to the German Shepherd Rottweiler Mix breed dog.
We are going to take a look at the important things you will need to know about the German Shepherd Rottweiler mix.
We’ll find out what a German Shepherd cross Rottweiler looks like, the origin of its parents, common behavior and possible health issues.
Helping you to decide whether or not this hybrid dog could be a good fit for your household.
What is a German Shepherd Rottweiler Mix?
A German Shepherd Rottweiler Mix is a designer breed. It results from the crossing of a purebred German Shepherd Dog (GSD) with a purebred Rottweiler. Two of the most popular and recognized dog breeds around!
According to the American Kennel Club, the German Shepherd Dog ranks second most popular breed. With the Rottweiler coming in as ninth most popular breed.
But before we can understand the Rottweiler german shepherd mix characteristics, we must first discuss its lineage.
Where Did the German Shepherd Rottweiler Mix Come From?
Let’s talk about the German Shepherd Dog and the Rottweiler!
The German Shepherd Dog is a member of the herding group of breeds.
The breed is well known for its tall stature. 24-26 inches at the shoulder. It is medium-sized, but with a well-muscled body and deep chest. GSDs may grow to anywhere from 49 to 88 pounds.
Other recognizable traits of the German Shepherd Dog include its sloping hips, crouched hind legs, large and alert ears. As well as extreme devotion to their human companion or handler. You’ll often find them used as guard or service dogs.
The Rottweiler is a member of the working group of breeds.
Rotties are much larger in size, typically maturing to 77-130 pounds and 22-27 inches tall. They are known for their powerful and robust physique, which some may find slightly intimidating.
It is generally accepted that Rottweilers were bred to be dependable working or guard animals. Their compact but agile physique provides increased strength and endurance.
German Shepherd Rottweiler Mix Temperament
One of the most common concerns about purchasing or adopting a large dog is their temperament.
Since the German Shepherd Rottweiler hybrid isn’t a pure breed, its temperament can only be assumed based on the characteristic temperament of its parent breeds. Due to the nature of its parent breeds, the German Shepherd Rottweiler mix temperament can be a sensitive subject.
The German Shepherd Dog is often seen as an aggressive dog, with this trait being put to use in a police K-9 position. However, it’s important to note that these service dogs are aggressive only when their handler prompts them to be.
As a companion, the German Shepherd has the potential to exhibit aggression to other dogs or even humans. The German Shepherd may express aggressive behavior if it feels that its owner or home is being threatened. Especially in an instance when a strange dog or human enters its “territory”.
Similarly to the German Shepherd, the Rottweiler is known as a particularly aggressive breed. This image is not helped by common instances of Rotties attacking children or other passers by. Because this breed was originated as a guard dog, Rotties are governed by their nature to protect what is “theirs” as well as their homes.
German Shepherd Rottweiler Mix Training
The good news is, both German Shepherds and Rottweilers are highly intelligent breeds that learn quickly, so Rottweiler and German Shepherd mix puppies can be easily trained.
Thus, it’s very important to begin handling and socializing them with other dogs and people (including children) starting at a young age.
Socialization to a range of places and people, as well as a large and frequent variety of visitors, will help your dog to feel comfortable. Reducing their need to ‘guard’ their property or family.
We highly recommend positive training techniques for guarding breeds of dog. Punishment based training can have the result of masking fearful or aggressive reactions in dogs, and can make them more likely to bite without warning in the future.
You can find out all about the demise of dominance theory and the benefits of reward based training here.
We must stress that with any mixed breed, the temperament of a hybrid dog or puppy may be reminiscent of one parent breed more so than the other. When breeding for a German Shepherd Rottweiler Mix, the resulting puppy’s temperament and traits will be very hard to predict.
German Shepherd Rottweiler Mix Height and Weight
So, will a German shepherd and Rottweiler mix grow up to be a large dog? The answer is most certainly yes.
Due to the size of its parents, a German Shepherd Rottweiler mix full grown will weigh anywhere from 77 to 115 pounds.
You can also expect them to reach a height of 22 to 27 inches at the shoulder.
German Shepherd Rottweiler Mix Colors
As we mentioned earlier, the traits of a hybrid puppy can be pretty hard to predict. As such, Rottweiler and german shepherd mix puppies may be born with a mix of their parent breeds’ characteristics.
Or they may exhibit characteristics from one breed more so than the other.
Rottweiler cross German Shepherd puppies’ coloring can be a solid or mix of colors. Including black, cream, red, sliver, tan, blue, gray, liver, sable, or white.
They may or may not inherit the Rottweiler’s rust or mahogany face and leg markings. The same goes for the German Shepherd’s black face and leg markings.
German Shepherd Rottweiler Mix Coat
With the German Shepherd’s medium-length, thick coat and the Rottie’s short, thick coat, a Rottweiler german shepherd will most likely have a thick coat.
However, the length of the coat depends on which parent the puppy takes after.
German Shepherd Rottweiler Mix Grooming and Shedding
Can you expect a German Shepherd mix with Rottweiler to shed a lot?
If a German Shepherd Rottweiler Mix puppy has the medium and shaggier coat of its German Shepherd parent, then it will require brushing several times each week.
This will increase to daily during shedding season.
If the puppy has the shorter coat of its Rottweiler parent, then it may not require more than a good weekly brushing.
It’s important to groom a dog even if they don’t shed much, so as to facilitate ridding of excess hair and dead skin.
A tool like a Furminator will help you to stay on top of this hairy problem.
German Shepherd Rottweiler Mix Health
Just like any purebred or hybrid dog, a Rottweiler mixed with german shepherd may have congenital health issues, or they may develop ailments later in life.
Common canine health issues, regardless of breed, include hip dysplasia, eye diseases, allergies, and skin irritations.
However, because both the German Shepherd Dog (GSD) and the Rottweiler are prone to joint degeneration, the GSD Rottweiler mix is especially prone to elbow and hip dysplasia. It’s been estimated that almost 70% of large-breed dogs will develop this devastating condition.
To delay the onset of elbow or hip dysplasia or to reduce the severity of an existing case, it’s very important to keep a Rottweiler GSD mix at a healthy weight.
Studies have shown that carrying extra weight greatly increases a young dog’s risk of joint degeneration.
In addition to hip and elbow dysplasia, a German Shepherd Rottweiler Mix may also inherit cancer, heart disease, hypothyroidism, and/or autoimmune diseases from their parents.
Getting A Healthy GSD Rottweiler Mix Puppy
If you’re working with a breeder to obtain a puppy, genetic testing on both the sire and dam will help determine any health issues that they carry.
Make sure that both parents have good hip and elbow scores.
It is also important that the German Shepherd parent has a flat back and does not walk on his hocks.
German Shepherd Rottweiler Mix Exercise Requirements
German Shepherd Rottweiler Mixes are prone to elbow or hip dysplasia and hypothyroidism.
It’s therefore very important that they get an appropriate amount of exercise and are kept on a healthy diet to maintain their weight.
Additionally, both German Shepherds and Rottweilers are very energetic and rambunctious breeds, so a hybrid of the two will also exhibit high energy and a playful attitude.
If they don’t get the proper amount of exercise, then their destructive tendencies may rear their ugly heads.
You might come home to find a piece of furniture or clothing chewed up!
To keep your home and dog happy, you should plan to walk or play with your German Shepherd Rottweiler for a minimum of one hour each day. You should also have plenty of room in the house for them to self-exercise if you are away.
It is not recommended to keep a GSD or Rottie if you are going to be regularly out of the house for long stretches of time.
How Long Do German Shepherd Rottweiler Mixes Live
You can expect a mixed breed puppy to live about as long as its parent breeds. Thus, the German Shepherd Rottweiler Mix can be expected to live for approximately 10 to 13 years.
Buying or Adopting a German Shepherd Rottweiler Mix
It may be easier to find a mixed breed dog for adoption at a local shelter or animal rescue than at a breeder’s. Thus, it may require a bit of searching around or collaborating with a breeder to get your perfect puppy!
So, how much will a Shepweiler puppy or dog cost?
As a designer breed, it may cost anywhere from a few hundred dollars to just shy of $1,000. This will depend on the parent stock and the value placed on them by the breeder.
Is a German Shepherd Rottweiler Mix a Good Family Dog?
Special consideration should be made before purchasing a German Shepherd Rottweiler cross.
Both parent breeds are large and energetic, so a hybrid puppy will require a lot of room to play and grow.
Additionally, they may require a lot of brushing if they have the German Shepherd’s longer coat, and you’ll need to clean your house a lot during shedding season.
You must also be prepared to deal with elbow or hip dysplasia, a common disease that affects both parent breeds. Carefully monitoring their diet and weight will be mandatory.
Are German Shepherd Rottweiler Mixes Kid Friendly?
Furthermore, both Rottweilers and German Shepherds are known for their potentially aggressive natures, so careful handling and obedience training starting at a young age is also a must, especially when dealing with a larger breed.
They may not be good candidates for homes with other animals or children.
However, if you have the space for a large and playful dog, the time and dedication to devote to socializing and training them properly. And you can put their intelligence to good use. Then a German Shepherd Rottweiler Mix may be your next pet! Just make sure that both parents are of great temperaments and are fully health tested.
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References and Further Reading
- American Kennel Club, “German Shepherd Dog” and“Rottweiler”
- Blackshaw, J.K., 1991. “An overview of types of aggressive behaviour in dogs and methods of treatment”. Appied Animal Behaviour Science, 30: 351-361.
- Smith, G.K., Mayhew, P.D., Kapatkin, A.S., McKelvie, P.J., Shofer, F.S., Gregor, T.P., 2001. “Evaluation of risk factors for degenerative joint disease associated with hip dysplasia in German Shepherd Dogs, Golden Retrievers, Labrador Retrievers, and Rottweilers”. Journal of Veterinary Medicine, 219.