The German Shepherd mix is a medium to large-sized crossbreed between an American Pitbull Terrier and a German Shepherd. Also known as a Shepherd Pit or German Pit, this dog can stand at 17 to 24 inches and weighs from 30 to 90 pounds. This Pitbull mix also has a lifespan of 10 to 12 years.
Being a cross between two dog breeds that are subject to stigma, this mixed dog is not well-understood.
So, if you are thinking about buying or adopting this dog, I am going to give you all the information that you need to know. This is because there is always more than what meets the eye.
Let us get right to it.
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Contents and Quick Navigation
- About the German Shepherd Pitbull mix
- Shepherd Pitbull mix general characteristics
- Pitbull Shepherd temperament and personality
- German Pit History
- How to take care of German Shepherd and Pitbull mix
- German shepherd and Pitbull mix health concerns
About the German Shepherd Pitbull mix
The German Shepherd American Pitbull Terrier mix is an intelligent, agile, and protective crossbreed that is also known as;
- German Sheppit
- Shepherd Pit
- German Pit
Some dog lovers may believe that the German Sheppit is an aggressive dog but most owners know that this is further from the truth.
This is a loving, loyal, and playful Pitbull mix that is known to do especially well around young children. He is also very smart which makes him very trainable.
These mixes are, however, not recognized by any of the major kennel clubs such as the AKC.
They can also vary in appearance and come in a variety of colors that can be found in either the purebred German Shepherd or the Pitbull.
You can learn more about the German Shepherd dog breed here.
The Pros and cons of owning a German Pitbull mix
✓ He is an intelligent crossbreed.
✔ They are loving and loyal companions.
✓ Are great guard dogs but can sometimes be over-protective.
✘ Not suited for apartment living due to their high energy requirements.
✗ Can be over-protective.
✘ Not ideal for first-time dog owners.
6 Pitbull German Shepherd mix fun facts
- These are very quick learners that can grasp new commands and simple trick in about 5 repetitions.
- Shepherd Pits are highly active dogs that will always put you on your toes and help you reach new heights of fitness.
- They have great work ethics with high energy levels and can be used as service dogs, as livestock herding dogs, and will also provide you with a lot of emotional support.
- German Shepherd Pitbull mixes are incredibly great and patient with children making perfect playmates for them.
- They are fast dogs and can reach peak speeds of over 30 miles per hour.
- German Sheppits may seem stubborn and have an intimidating stature but they are very sensitive and emotional dogs deep down. Their feelings will easily get hurt and they are also easily affected by their owners’ emotional changes.
Shepherd Pitbull mix general characteristics
|German Shepherd Pitbull Mix summary table|
|Height||Males: 18 to 26 inches, Females: 17 to 24 inches|
|Weight||Males: 40 to 90 pounds, Females: 30 to 70 pounds|
|Lifespan||10 to 12 years|
|Breed Type||Mixes and more|
|Purpose||Companion or working dog|
|Suitable For||People that have experience with dogs|
|Color Variations||Black, white, grey, fawn, brown, tan|
|Health concerns||Skin allergies (Atopic Dermatitis) and Canine Hip Dysplasia|
|Temperament||intelligent, loyal, bold, loving, eager to please, Energetic, may be aggressive|
|Other Names||He is also known as a Shepherd Pitt, German Pit, or German Sheppit.|
Height and weight
The Pitbull Shepherd is a medium to large-sized hybrid.
Size depends on which breed genes are dominant in the hybrid. If German shepherd genes are dominant, the dog will be larger but if the American Pitbull Terrier genes are dominant, then the mixed dog will be smaller.
This crossbreed has a height of 18 to 26 inches for males and 17 to 24 inches for females depending on their overall build and nutrition. The weight of this Pitbull mix is 40 to 90 pounds for males and 30 to 70 pounds for females.
Physical appearance and life expectancy of this dog
German Pits have a life expectancy of between 10 to 12 years.
In general, the German shepherd Pitbull mix resembles more of the American Pitbull Terrier with a short muzzle and a broadhead.
Sometimes they may have a longer snout like that of a german shepherd.
They also have well-defined muscles and slightly bent ears.
German Sheppit coat appearance and shedding
It sometimes hard to know exactly what type of coat a German shepherd pitbull mix will have.
They may appear like one fo the two dogs or maybe a perfect blend of the two. You cannot know exactly.
The coat can be short to medium in length.
If the hybrid leans more towards the German shepherd’s side the coat the dog will have a double coat of medium length. This coat has a soft undercoat and a rough upper coat.
If the Pitbull shepherd inherits the Pitbull’s genes then the cot will be short and stiff.
The dogs may prefer warmer climates if they have a short coat.
None the less the coat may have different color variations like;
Some of the hybrids may inherit the German Shepherd’s coat that is usually multi-colored of the Pitbull’s coat that is usually bridle.
You should, however, note that this dog is a moderate shedder.
Learn more about shedding in dogs and some of the shedding remedies you can use to control the shedding level.
Pitbull Shepherd temperament and personality
Just like any other designer dog, it is hard to predict the exact temperament of the German Pitbull. The German Shepherd Pitbull mix is mostly associated with being too aggressive something very unfortunate.
How your dog behaves depends on how you raise him and the environment that you raise him in.
With the correct training and socialization, this dog turns out to be a loyal, loving, and extremely friendly member of the family making him a good choice as a family pet.
German Pitbulls are intelligent dogs. This is because both the Pitbull and the German Shepherd are known to be very intelligent dogs something that is inherited by this hybrid.
This dog is good at entertaining himself but he still loves being around the family and share his happiness with them.
It is, therefore, not a good idea to leave this pooch for extended periods.
The Shepherd Pitbull can also be a very protective dog due to the traits of the German shepherd which are known for their guard dog instincts.
So, while he may have the intention of protecting his family this may manifest itself with hostility towards strangers.
To prevent him from showing this kind of hostility you should socialize her at an early age as much as possible.
Make sure that your pooch is introduced to young children in the right manner so that they can learn the dos and don’ts of how a dog should be treated.
German Pitbull mix dogs tend to exhibit leadership qualities.
This is a trait that is gotten from the German Shepherd line who herding dogs tend to want to lead the pack.
You may need to keep an eye on this behavior as it could get out of hand and turn to aggression.
The high energy and training needs are why this dog is best suited for owners that have experience with dogs.
German Pit History
German Pits are believed to have first been bred in the early 2000s.
The main intention of breeding this dog was to combine the intelligence of the German Shepherd and the agility if the American Pitbull Terrier.
To better understand the history of this dog let’s look at the history of the parent breeds.
German shepherd brief history
Deutsche Schäferhunds or German Shepherds are guarding dogs and is one of the most popular dog breeds over the world.
The German Shepherd is an intelligent dog that is capable of working and excelling in what you teach him.
He was bred in the late 1800s by a German Captain known as Captain Max von Stephanitz and he wanted to create a perfect working dog.
After working for 35 years, he finally developed the German Shepherd breed that we know today.
And as a result of the working ethics and qualities such as intelligence and versatility, they became very popular and their popularity only grew from there to make them one of the most popular breeds today.
These dogs are also known as Alsatians.
Other popular German Shepherd mixes
- Shug is an odd mix of the two: German Shepherds and Pugs.
- Shepadoodle is a mix between a Poodle and a German Shepherd making a very intelligent breed.
- Wolf Shepherd is as close as you can get to a wild animal.
- Shepkita is a mix between Akitas and German shepherds.
- Golden Shepherds is a hybrid that combines the qualities of German Shepherds and Golden Retrievers.
- German Shepherd Rottweiler mix
American Pitbull Terrier brief history
The Pitbull Terrier is a medium-sized, intelligent, and short-haired dog whose ancestors come from the British Isles.
He was originally bred in the 19th for the blood sport of bull and bear-baiting.
These sports then became illegal in 1835 and dogfighting took its place. This dog was, therefore, bred to be more aggressive towards other dogs.
However, they were also made super friendly towards people which allowed them to get into the fighting rings without getting bitten by the dogs. This is where these dogs got their unwillingness to bite people.
After immigrants moved with the dogs to America, they were mainly used as farm dogs and also doubled as nanny dogs due to how patient and friendly they were around young children.
Here they were also used to hunt wild game and provide security against animal intruders.
These settlers wanted to make the dog bigger and better. Pitbulls were thus made bigger than they were in England.
Other popular Pitbull mixes
- The Pitbull Labrador mix is a cross between an American Pitbull Terrier and a Labrador Retriever.
- Pitoxer is a hybrid that combines the qualities of a Pitbull and a Boxer.
- Pitweiler is a mixed dog that comes from 2 pure dog breeds, which are Rottweiler and Pitbull.
- Pitchow is a Pitbull mix, which is the result of crossing Pitbull and Chow Chow.
- Chipit is a hybrid that results from mixing a Chihuahua and American Pitbull Terrier parents.
German shepherd Pitbull mix puppy
Getting a crossbreed puppy is more difficult than getting a purebred.
Therefore, you have to be careful of the breeder that you are getting this hybrid from and make sure that he or she is responsible and reputable.
You have to do your research before starting your search for this pooch.
A responsible breeder should have the most important information about the breed.
Apart from getting a reputable breeder, you should also spend time with the parent breeds and get to know their traits. And if you are lucky enough and get a puppy or adult dog to adopt then also spending time with his is also crucial.
A Shepherd Pitbull usually has a litter size of about 8 puppies with the German shepherd being the dam and the Pitbull being the sire.
The average price of getting one German Shepherd Pitbull puppy is anywhere between $500 and $1200.
How to take care of German Shepherd and Pitbull mix
1. Grooming needs
Maintaining a German shepherd and Pitbull is easier as compared to other dog breeds.
However, the grooming requirements will largely depend on the dominant breed between a German shepherd and a Pitbull.
An example is that if the puppy inherits the German shepherd’s coat the coat will be much thicker and will require regular brushing.
If the pooch inherits the Pitbull’s coat, not much brushing will be needed as the dog will have a short coat. After brushing the coat, you can also spray the coat with a leave-in conditioner to restore his sheen and for a generally healthier coat.
You should bath this hybrid only when it is necessary or ideally after every 6 weeks using a doggie shampoo and conditioner to leave him smelling fresh.
During winter you should lather the coat using cod liver oil to prevent the skin from getting dry as temperatures drop.
The ears should also be cleaned to reduce the risk of infections and nails clipped to keep them short and to ensure that the dog has the highest levels of comfort.
Dip a cotton bud into an ear cleaning solution after which you will use it to clean the German Shepherd Pitbull’s ears.
Make sure that you are cleaning the outer area as you do not want to damage the dog’s ears.
Dental hygiene should also be a priority for you as you take care of this dog.
2. Feeding a Pitbull Shepherd
Male German Pits need anywhere from 1000 to 2100 calories in a day while females will need about 900 to 1800 calories in a day.
|German Shepherd Pitbull mix Daily Food Consumption|
|Guide||900 to 2100 calories|
|Cups of Kibble||3 to 4|
These meals will need to be divided into about 3 meals a day to reduce the risk of bloat which is common in these dogs and can have devastating effects on them.
As a puppy, a Shepherd Pitbull has high energy requirements due to their fast growth, you will need to give him about 4 meals in a day to avoid overstretching the stomach.
A healthy dog diet is mainly made up of meat-based proteins as the main ingredients.
The more protein that is in your dog’s diet the healthier he will become.
So, as a puppy, the diet should be made up of about 25% protein and 8% fat. it should also be rich in minerals such as calcium and phosphorous.
The amount of protein and fat that you give to your dog will reduce as he grows to about 20% protein and 5% fat.
Fatty acids help in keeping the coat healthy and shiny.
Choose a diet with fewer grains and no fillers as they can upset the canine’s stomach and even cause allergic reactions.
Make sure that you always read the labels on any commercial foods.
3. German shepherd and Pitbull mix exercise requirements
The German shepherd Pitbull mix is an active high energy dog that is happiest when he has something to keep him mentally and physically stimulated.
This dog will need upwards of 60 minutes in daily exercise.
You can accomplish this by;
- Taking him for 2 daily walks
- Play sessions in the yard
- Agility training sessions
- Swimming in safe ponds and swimming pools
In this way, you both benefit and create a better bond between you and your dog.
Unfortunately, this is not the dog for you if you live in an apartment because of his high exercise needs.
|Daily Exercise Requirements|
|Minutes||60 to 90 minutes|
|Number of walks||2 (30 minutes each)|
4. Training requirements
Although this dog is an intelligent dog you should be warned that he can be a little stubborn during training.
He is best fitted for experienced dog owners and may not be for first-time dog owners.
You will need to have a well set out plan to train your dog as he always wants to be the leader of the pack and may want to have his way.
The best way to train this canine friend is by being consistent and through positive reinforcement. You should also be patient as training may take time.
Start with the basic training such as housebreaking before progressing to more advanced training. House training will include toilet training your dog or puppy and others.
Socialize your dog to get rid of those aggressive tendencies by introducing him to the outside world.
This will include other people and even other animals. The more the dog experiences what the world has to offer the more he will learn that it is nothing to be aggressive or wary about.
German shepherd and Pitbull mix health concerns
There are always a few health concerns that you have to look out for even if the dog was crossed to outbreed any health issues.
The German shepherd Pitbull mix is no exception to that as this dog is prone to inheriting some of the health problems from the parent breeds.
Luckily some of these problems can be treated as long as you keep a close eye on your dog.
You can schedule a test with your veterinarian to determine the possibility of any inherited health issues.
There are recommendations and diet requirements that you will require to follow to keep your pooch in a stable healthy state.
Some of the health concerns are;
- Dog allergies, especially food-related allergies.
- Atopic Dermatitis is an allergy-induced skin condition that is common in Pit Bull Terriers
This is the perfect dog for an experienced dog owner with his loving, intelligent, bold, and protective nature.
As long as you are aware of their energy requirements and can accommodate the dog then you should have no problem dealing with this beautiful pooch.
You should be able to provide the proper training for him to be able to adapt to any living conditions making a great addition to the family.