Are you fascinated by the adorable German shepherd husky mix and want to know if it’s a good breed for first-time owners?
Then you’ve found the right place to learn all about the husky German shepherd mix.
Just keep on reading.
Everything You Need To Know About A German Shepherd And Husky Mix
When you mix these two majestic breeds, you get a Gerberian Shepsky or just Shepsky. It’s an adorable dog that takes after its parents in looks, smartness, and endurance.
However, like all breeds, Shepsky has good sides and bad sides. You have to know more about its temperament, health, and care to decide if it’s the right breed for you.
That’s why we’re here.
German Shepherd Husky Mix History
People started intentionally breeding shepskies around the ’90s. They wanted to create a super working dog with the intelligence of a German shepherd and a husky endurance.
Then designer dogs became popular with a high demand for cute mixed puppies, and breeders continued to breed German shepherd husky mix dogs.
The rest is history, as people say.
Since Shepsky is a mixed breed, not a purebred, not all kennel clubs will allow you to register your dog.
Moreover, if you’re thinking about taking part in shows or competitions, Giberian huskies might not qualify, due to its mixed heritage.
German Shepherd Husky Mix Size and Appearance
It’s easy to predict the size or appearance of purebred dogs, but Shepsky puppies might take after one of the parents or both. More about that in a bit.
Furthermore, German shepherd husky mix a relatively new breed, and there are no established standards for it.
However, since German shepherds are large dogs and huskies – medium, you can expect most Shepsky to be between 45 to 80 pounds with an average height of 20-25 inches.
As for appearance, German shepherd husky mixes are usually muscular, with long, pointed heads, broad faces, and strong jaws.
The body is lean with a thick, dense coat, a long bushy tail, and erect ears. Eyes might be blue, light brown, or both (heterochromia.)
Coat color is usually a combination of two or three colors, rarely solid. The most common coat color combinations are black, brown, red, blue, white, and cream.
German Shepherd Husky Mix Dog Temperament
To understand what temperament Shephy puppies might have, we have to know more about the parents. So, let’s get a closer look at both breeds.
Created as herding dogs, German shepherds are highly intelligent, loyal, and devoted. They can be excellent service animals, emotional support pets, police dogs, or movie stars.
However, German shepherds aren’t a lazy breed and hate sitting idle all day. They require a lot of physical and mental exercise to prevent destructive behavior.
Moreover, German shepherds have a suspicious streak and don’t make friends with strangers on the spot.
They need time to warm up to you, which is why they’re suitable for guard dog training.
With their family, German shepherds are loyal, protective, and easy-going. They don’t like to be alone or ignored but aren’t obsessed and needy.
Siberian huskies are enchanting with their striking blue eyes, wolf-like appearance, and playfulness. But for inexperienced owners, Siberian huskies can be too much to handle.
Since people bred husky thrive in the harshest weather, they’re highly independent and are among the hardest breeds to train.
That’s because huskies don’t have the same desire to please as most dogs and can be very stubborn and independent at times. They’re also cunning escape-artists and love digging.
Still, Siberian huskies love to be around people and be part of the pack. They do well with strangers, tolerate other dogs, and make great pets for confident owners.
Most Shepskies are affectionate without being needy, protective, and mischievous. They’ve got an endless supply of energy and need to be needed.
Without proper physical and mental stimulation, these cute dogs howl, bark, and chew stuff to relieve boredom. Escape attempts are also a possibility.
At times, Shepskies can be pushy and try to assert their dominance in the household. It’s essential to establish rules for your dog and stick to them.
Shepskies also require early socialization to counteract their German shepherd’s suspicious nature.
That’s the best way to ensure that they behave well around other dogs, strangers, and children.
German shepherd husky mix dogs also don’t like to be alone for hours. They’re pack dogs and thrive when you include them in your daily activities.
Since a puppy can inherit traits from both parents, you should ask to meet the parents. That’s the best way to determine if the puppy’s temperament is a match for you.
German Shepherd Husky Mix Dog Health
While people believe that hybrid breeds are healthier than purebreds, mixed dogs can inherit some of their parent’s diseases.
Most Shepskies are healthy dogs with a lifespan of 10-14 years. Still, you should keep an eye for the following conditions, common in huskies and German shepherds:
Make sure that you get a Shepshy from a reputable breeder who screens for hereditary conditions. Always request to see health clearances for inherited diseases.
And be careful not to overfeed your dog because Shepskies are prone to weight gain, despite their high-energy levels.
German Shepherd Husky Mix Dog Care
Compared to some high-maintenance dog breeds, shepskies aren’t difficult to manage. But as you’ll find out, there are a few specifics.
The most important thing is to have regular vet check-ups, vaccinate your dog, and spay/neuter them when it’s time.
As we already pointed out, Shepskies can put on pounds quickly, which can exacerbate joint issues and other inherited conditions.
Moreover, German shepherd dogs grow rapidly, which makes them prone to bone issues.
As such, Shepskies do best on a high-quality, low-calorie diet to prevent rapid growth and meet their nutritional needs.
Limit treats and plan to serve regular meals throughout the day instead of leaving food available all the time.
Having your Shepsky “work” for their meal is also an excellent training trick for establishing your leader position.
Keep in mind that the nutritional needs of your Shepsky will change as they grow, so speak with your vet or a nutritionist to ensure you’ve got the right portion size.
Husky German shepherd mix dogs need plenty of exercises to keep them happy and content. Plan for at least one to two hours of activity every day.
However, don’t let your Shepsky puppy exercise or jump on hard surfaces until they’re at least two years old and the growth plates have closed. It could lead to bone deformities.
Speak to your vet if you’re unsure what activities are suitable for growing puppies, and make sure that you don’t overtire your puppy by accident.
If your dog howls, tears apart furniture, or misbehaves, they’re probably bored and need more physical and mental stimulations.
Try chasing, tug of war, fetch, puzzle toys, and long walks.
In general, Giberian huskies have thick, dense fur and need brushing at least twice a week to reduce the amount of shedding and keep the coat smooth and shiny.
In addition to regular brushing, clip your Shepsky’s nails once or twice a month, check the ears for debris daily, and brush your dog’s teeth.
Frequent bathing isn’t recommended because you’re going to strip the coat of its natural oil. Fortunately, Shepskies are neat dogs and won’t track much mud around the house.
The sooner you start training your German shepherd husky mix, the better. These dogs can be stubborn, and early training can help counteract this trait.
Training is also an excellent way to exercise this dog and keep them mentally and physically stimulated. It would also help to establish your leadership position.
Always use positive reinforcement (rewarding your dog for good behavior) during training and avoid punishments. Keep the session short, fun, and engaging.
You can also enroll your Shepshy in puppy obedience school. It’s a great way to socialize puppies and teach them manners.
Crate training is also necessary. Huskies and German shepherds can be quite destructive when bored/anxious, and a Shepsky is no different.
Tolerance to Heat/Cold
Since Shepskies have a dense coat, they can tolerate cold temperatures better than other breeds.
During winter, you can let your dog play in the snow or take them for a walk. They won’t mind.
However, German shepherd husky mix dogs don’t tolerate heat so well. During the summer, ensure that your dog has plenty of water and a shady place to hide from the sun.
Keep an eye for signs of heat exhaustion, and avoid intensive exercises on hot days.
Furthermore, don’t leave your Shepsky alone in the yard for too long, no matter the weather. Your dog might find a way to escape if you haven’t dog-proof your yard.
Shepskies are also people-orientated and don’t make good outdoor dogs. Their curiosity can get them into trouble, or they can develop separation anxiety.
You probably have tons of other questions about German shepherd husky mix dogs. We’re going to try to answer the most common ones.
Are German Shepherd Husky Mix Dogs Good for Apartments?
Due to their high activity level and medium to large size, Shepskies also aren’t the best dog breed for apartments.
They love open spaces, dog parks, and spacious yards and don’t adapt well to apartments. Cooped inside, Shepskies can be destructive because they hate to be idle.
Moreover, Shepskies might howl when left alone, and your neighbors probably won’t appreciate their musical voice.
Are German Shepherd Husky Mix Dogs Hypoallergenic?
No, Giberian Shepskies aren’t a hypoallergenic breed. They shed too much to be a good choice for people with allergies.
Brush your dog regularly to reduce the amount of fur around the house. Investing in a pet vacuum cleaner is also an excellent idea since Shepskies might blow their coats like huskies.
Are German Shepherd Husky Mix Dogs Good With Children and Pets?
Most Shepkies get along well with children if they have plenty of exposure and positive experience with kids.
They can be great companions since Shepskies are loyal and protective of their families.
However, you should teach your children how to behave around dogs and not leave your child and dog unsupervised.
As for other pets, things are a little bit more complicated. That’s because huskies get on well with other dogs, while German shepherds aren’t dog-friendly.
Ensure that your Shepsky has plenty of exposure to other dogs to counteract their German shepherd’s side and consult with a professional trainer for adult Shepskies.
Proper introductions also reduce the risk of aggression and tension between dogs in the household.
Are They For You?
German shepherd husky mix dogs are affectionate, intelligent, and playful. They make great family pets and can amuse you all day long with their shenanigans.
However, Shepskies can be stubborn, independent, and willful. They require extensive socialization to counteract aggressive/guarding traits, plenty of exercises, and training.
As such, German shepherd husky mixes aren’t the best breed for first-time owners unless you’re ready for a challenge.