|22 – 28 inches
|50 – 100 pounds
|10 – 14 years
|Black, black and rust, black and cream, blue and rust, red and rust, white, liver, gray
|Loyal, courageous, alert
|Families with young children; active owners; being a working dog
The German Shepherd Doberman mix could be your answer to finding the best guard dog!
Often referred to as a Doberman Shepherd, this dog is loyal, loving, and resilient. Although their intimidating appearance might make them appear otherwise, they are affectionate and observant.
In this article, we’ll go over everything you need to know about the German Shepherd Doberman mix.
What Is a German Shepherd Doberman Mix?
The German Shepherd Doberman mix is the hybrid of the German Shepherd and Doberman. This mix is one of the most formidable guard dogs out there. Large, powerful animals with a lot of energy, Doberman Shepherds are best suited for owners who can keep up with their high spirits.
These dogs are extremely intelligent canines thanks to their GSD and Doberman blood. Training them will be pretty easy, especially for experienced dog owners, but this may pose a problem when they lack proper discipline.
Dog owners should make it clear to the Doberman Shepherd that they are in control since this breed can be very stubborn.
Moreover, as relatively new mixes, Doberman Shepherds are not recognized as an official dog breed by the American Kennel Club. They aren’t allowed to join conformation shows and agility competitions for both their parent breeds.
German Shepherd Doberman Mix Origin and History: Where Does the Doberman Shepherd Come From?
Both the Doberman Pinscher and German Shepherd originate from Germany having rich histories. However, it is yet to be known when and where their offspring, the first German Shepherd Doberman mix puppy, was born.
Like their parent breeds, it is possible that the Doberman Shepherd was an attempt to create a new breed with better performance. Nevertheless, the Doberman Shepherd is still far from getting recognized as an official breed.
Let’s review the history of the Doberman Shepherd’s parent breeds to understand them better.
Dobermans were actually a mixed breed at first. Historians cite the Black and Tan Terrier, Rottweiler, and German Pinscher among the breeds that compose the modern Doberman Pinscher.
Doberman Pinschers were valuable service dogs, even in the middle of wars. Their role in the Second World War is evidenced by the many fallen Dobermans in a war dogs cemetery in Guam.
Meanwhile, you can trace the German Shepherd’s lineage to a Mountain Sheepdog as early as the 7th century. Eventually, Captain Max von Stephanitz bred various local shepherd dogs until he produced the first GSD.
At first, the German Shepherd was called German Sheepdog as it was mainly used as a shepherd dog for livestock. A few decades later, the GSD gained even more popularity for its role in the first World War.
Since both its parents played a big role in wars, you can expect no less from the Doberman Shepherd’s courage and guarding abilities.
German Shepherd Doberman Mix Appearance: What Does a Doberman Shepherd Look Like?
Doberman German Shepherds vary in appearance depending on which parent breeds’ genes become dominant.
Doberman German Shepherd mix owners typically have dogs that look more like American or European Dobermans than GSDs.
First, the Doberman Shepherd has a set of medium-sized almond eyes that give an expression equal to vigor and intelligence. The head shape may also vary from long and sloping to cleanly chiseled and robust.
The ears may be floppy like the Doberman Pinscher’s or naturally erect like the German Shepherd’s. However, most owners of this mix prefer to have floppy ears cropped erect.
Their body is well-muscled and agile. However, a Doberman Shepherd with strong German Shepherd blood will have a stockier body than one with more Doberman Pinscher traits.
In contrast, a dominant Doberman Pinscher gene would give a Doberman Shepherd a sleeker and lighter body with a deeper chest.
Occasionally, a Doberman Shepherd mix puppy may be born with a medium-length coat, similar to its German Shepherd parent. However, you may find some of these mixes to have the smooth coat of a Doberman.
In terms of coat color, a Doberman Shepherd’s coat may duplicate the coat colors of its dog parents or a mixture of two coats. Among these coat colors are black, black and rust, dark brown, red, liver, and blue or gray.
Usually, they will have short and soft coats like the German Shepherd. However, this might not be the ideal dog for regions with extremely cold weather.
If you want to learn more about what they look like, check out this video of a Doberman Shepherd puppy:
German Shepherd Doberman Mix Size and Weight: How Big Do Doberman Shepherds Get?
As large dogs, German Shepherd Doberman mixes are about 24 to 28 inches tall in males and 22 to 26 inches tall in females.
Male German Shepherd Doberman mixes weigh a hefty 65 to 100 pounds, whereas females weigh 50 to 90 pounds.
Most Doberman Shepherds reach their maximum size at the age of 12 months; however, some of them may grow up to the age of 18 months.
As true offspring of their parent breeds, their size and weight do not stray much from the breed standards for GSDs and Dobies set by the American Kennel Club.
Moreover, it is also essential to consider that some Doberman Shepherds may grow past the size of their parents. Hybrid vigor explains that younger generations of dogs will grow up much larger than their parents.
German Shepherd Doberman Mix Temperament: Do Doberman Shepherds Make Good Family Dogs?
When trained and provided with early socialization, Doberman Shepherds can be great family pets, but they can be a little overexcited around young children.
Kids generally find them gentle and affectionate, but they can hurt themselves accidentally if knocked over during play.
It won’t be a problem for Doberman Shepherds to get along with other dogs or cats since the former do not have much prey instinct. Generally, it is safe to keep other pets with German Shepherd Doberman mixes.
It is still important to properly introduce your Doberman Shepherds to other pets in your home for everyone’s safety.
While most people will have reservations against this mixed breed, Doberman Shepherds are pretty friendly towards strangers. In fact, this “terrifying” dog is more welcoming to strangers compared to other mixes.
However, make sure not to give off any signs of a threat to this breed’s master as it will immediately follow its guarding instincts.
Additionally, a Doberman Shepherd is very likely to suffer from separation anxiety. As compensation, this breed requires more socialization and attention than other dogs.
READ NEXT: Male vs. Female Doberman: Which Is Better?
German Shepherd Doberman Mix Lifespan and Health Issues: Are Doberman Shepherds Healthy Dogs?
Typically, a German Shepherd Doberman mix lives between 10 and 14 years. Despite their athletic body type, Doberman Shepherd mixes are not exempt from common diseases of dogs.
Most diseases that plague dogs can affect any breed, but some health issues tend to affect Doberman Shepherds more often.
Here are some of the health conditions that commonly affect the Doberman German Shepherd mix:
- Von Willebrand Disease: Commonly seen in Doberman Pinschers and their crosses, von Willebrand disease is usually characterized by uncontrollable bleeding of wounds. This significant condition is caused by the dog’s lack of the von Willebrand factor, a key component for blood clotting and wound closure. Unfortunately, this disease may be passed on to the offspring of affected Doberman German Shepherds.
- Hip Dysplasia: Perhaps the most commonly associated disease with GSDs is hip dysplasia. Generally, the hip joint loses correct contact, making walking difficult. The active lifestyle of a German Shepherd Doberman crossbreed worsens this condition as the hip joint is extensively used.
- Gastric Dilatation and Volvulus (GDV): The most common disease related to food in large breeds such as the GSD, Doberman, and Siberian Husky is GDV. In this life-threatening condition, the stomach twists and blocks food, causing the surrounding blood vessels to be strangled.
- Wobbler Syndrome: This disease, commonly seen in Doberman Pinschers, German Shepherds, and their crosses, is characterized by wobbly walking. Most symptoms of this disease are neurological signs and are caused by the compression of the spinal cord. In addition, the symptoms may vary depending on the affected dog’s breed and age group.
While the diseases mentioned above are truly terrifying, the best solution is to provide immediate medical attention upon noticing the early signs of the conditions.
In addition, it is not recommended to get a Doberman Shepherd mix puppy from parents with a history of heritable diseases as the puppy has a high chance of developing these diseases.
How to Take Care of Your German Shepherd Doberman Mix
Now that you know the common health problems of Doberman Shepherds, let’s get into the fundamentals of taking care of them. While all dogs require proper food, grooming, and exercise, these will vary with each breed.
Here’s how you can take care of the GSD Doberman Pinscher mix specifically:
Food and Diet
As an active and energetic breed, a German Shepherd Doberman mix needs a balanced diet that includes fiber, fats, and lots of protein. You should steer clear of feeding your dog large amounts of carbohydrates.
As this breed grows, it will require a more considerable amount of protein from its diet. Also, consider adding joint and bone supplements to support their active lifestyle.
Some owners attempt to address this by providing freshly prepared food rather than giving commercial dog food.
However, you should avoid overfeeding German Shepherd Doberman mixes since this may lead to many health issues. Ideally, Doberman Shepherds should be fed twice to thrice a day.
It is recommended that you consult with a licensed veterinarian or animal nutritionist first before deciding what to feed your Doberman Shepherd. There are tons of dog food brands that do not meet quality standards.
Cleaning and Grooming
While the coat type of a Doberman Shepherd may differ from one dog to another, it is crucial to groom and bathe them regularly. This can help avoid skin diseases and even parasites like fleas and ticks.
Grooming a Doberman Shepherd is quite straightforward; you won’t have to cut any fur except for the optional paw pad trimming. Getting rid of dead hair will be your only concern in grooming these large dogs.
Regularly bathing your Doberman Shepherd once every 4 to 6 weeks is enough to keep their fur and skin soft and free from dirt and smell.
A great addition to their grooming routine is regular dental care. Aside from brushing their teeth, you can have your Doberman Shepherd undergo dental prophylaxis to keep their pearly whites strong and healthy.
Training and Exercise
Unlike other dog breeds, a Doberman Shepherd will need more than just a stroll in the dog park. As active dogs, you’ll need to provide a Doberman Shepherd with a minimum of two hours of exercise.
Moreover, veterinarians recommended that you spread these two hours of exercise across the day rather than doing it in one go. This can ensure that you won’t be overworking your Doberman Shepherd.
Regarding discipline, if you’re not yet confident with training a large dog breed, it is recommended that you hire a dog trainer. These professionals will surely take away any bad habits your Doberman Shepherd has.
How Much Does a Doberman Shepherd Cost? Puppy Prices & Expenses
Fortunately, you can pick up Doberman German Shepherd puppies from a reputable breeder for a mere price of $400 to $900. A variety of factors can influence the price, including quality, markings, and sex.
Even with this seemingly low price, the expenses for keeping them aren’t cheap. You’ll also need to account for other costs, such as vaccinations, grooming essentials, and accessories.
Here are some of the items you would have to buy for your Doberman Shepherd:
|Type of Expense
|Food and Treats
|$100 – $120
|Food and Water Bowls
|$15 – $35
|$50 – $200
|$60 – $500
|Leash and Collar
|$15 – $50
|$30 – $50
|$40 – $180
|Deworming, Flea, and Tick Medication
|$50 – $200
|Initial Vet Visits
|$100 – $300
|Initial Vaccine Shots
|$75 – $200
|Neutering or Spaying
|$50 – $500
|$10 – $20
|$40 – $60
|$15 – $30
|Total Initial Cost
|$650 – $2,445
Notice the considerable range for the total initial cost. The price of each service or product may still depend on your preferred brand.
It would also be helpful to compare different brands rather than availing the first product you see right away.
Places to Find German Shepherd Doberman Mix Puppies for Sale and Adoption
The Doberman German Shepherd mix is a relatively new mixed breed compared to other dogs. In line with this, don’t be surprised if you’ll have a hard time getting your hands on a Doberman Shepherd mix.
Buying a Doberman Shepherd puppy for a very low price usually indicates they came from a puppy mill. Steer clear from buying them as they are likely to be unhealthy, and you shouldn’t support this unethical industry.
Here are some reputable breeders where you may find Doberman Shepherd puppies for sale:
- AKC Marketplace – A great way to find a Doberman German Shepherd mix is to trace it back to its parent dogs. In the AKC Marketplace, you’ll be able to contact a plethora of reputable breeders of GSDs and Dobermans. You’ll also find that some of them offer mixes such as hybrids of German Shepherd and Doberman like the Doberman Shepherd.
- Vom Hismerh German Shepherds and Dobermans – Having been in the industry since 1980, this breeder imports their top-quality dogs straight from Germany. All of their dogs are of show quality and free of defects, ensuring that your next Doberman Shepherd mix is healthy.
- Puppies.com – This site provides access to different breeders where you can find a Doberman Shepherd puppy using an easy-to-use interface. A quick search on this site yields over a hundred listings for Doberman Shepherd puppies!
If it seems complicated to find a reputable breeder in your area, or if you want to save some cash, you can try your luck with adopting Doberman Shepherd puppies instead.
Here are some organizations to find a German Shepherd Doberman mix for adoption:
- German Shepherd Rescue & Adoptions – If you’re located in North Carolina, South Carolina, or Virginia, look no further! Founded in 1992, this rescue caters to German Shepherds, GSD mixes, and other dog breeds.
- German Shepherd Rescue of Orange County (GSROC) – With their careful screening process, GSROC places thousands of German Shepherds and GSD mixes into loving homes with compassionate pet lovers. This non-profit organization has plenty of GSD mixes to rehome, and the German Shepherd Doberman is one of them.
- Illinois Doberman Rescue Plus – While this non-profit organization primarily focuses on Dobermans, they also accept other official breeds and mixed breeds. If you adopt a Doberman Shepherd from this rescue, you can be assured that your future companion dog is already neutered, vaccinated, and treated for heartworms.
As a bonus, check out our ultimate dog adoption guide. Here, you can learn extremely helpful tips about acquiring rescue dogs to make adoption a breeze!
Pros and Cons of Owning a Doberman German Shepherd Mix
It may be challenging to decide whether you should get a Doberman German Shepherd mix or not. It’s already a given that they are loyal guard dogs that will stay by your side, but they also have their flaws.
To help you decide once and for all, I’ve summarized some of the defining advantages and disadvantages of owning this designer dog.
First, here are the advantages of owning a Doberman German Shepherd mix:
- Their appearance is enough protection. While most dog owners are simply in awe of the striking looks of the Doberman Shepherd, some people are intimidated by this dog breed. Being seen with this loyal guard dog may be enough to deter robbers.
- Doberman Shepherds are natural bodyguards. Not only does this dog breed look intimidating, but it’s also willing to protect its master at all costs. They may act all soft and friendly with human family members, but this dog will go head-on with any threats.
- They’re the product of two of the most intelligent dog breeds. Although the Doberman Shepherd has more potential to harm humans than other dogs, they receive commands quite well. Training will be even easier since they make it a goal to please their masters. Indeed, the Doberman Shepherd is a good balance of brains and brawn.
Now, here are the disadvantages of owning a Doberman German Shepherd mix:
- Their size might be too much. A mix of this size is challenging for first-time dog owners. Apart from consuming a lot of food, Doberman German Shepherds are prone to breaking items in your home if bored. Additionally, a larger dog can be brushed and bathed more often due to its larger stature.
- Doberman Shepherds may develop serious health problems. Doberman German Shepherds are prone to various severe health problems. Moreover, most of their diseases are very expensive to treat and require intense medical attention.
- They have higher energy levels compared to other dogs. Doberman German Shepherds are indeed the offspring of two highly energetic parent breeds. If you cannot keep up with such liveliness, you might end up with chewed-up furniture and broken glassware. It’s imperative to satisfy the stimulation needs of this mixed breed.
Doberman Shepherds have both advantages and disadvantages strongly correlated with their size and intelligence. Lastly, a good owner will find a workaround for each and every one of this dog’s traits.
Frequently Asked Questions
Are Doberman Shepherds Good Dogs?
The Doberman Shepherd combines its parent breeds’ intelligence, alertness, and loyalty, making it an excellent guard dog. Despite their strong-willed nature and stubbornness, they keep a tender side for their masters.
In fact, their loyalty to their master is exceptional — they might even have separation anxiety in the absence of a loving owner.
Are Doberman Shepherds Aggressive?
Although Doberman Shepherds can show aggressive behavior, they are usually aggressive when defending their master and territory due to their strong guarding instinct as they are well-known guard dogs.
They are generally friendly, but they do not quickly lower their guard with strangers unless appropriately introduced. Families are essential to them, and they are very loving and sensitive towards them.
Do German Shepherd Doberman Mixes Shed a Lot?
German Shepherd Doberman mixes shed quite a bit, so you will need to brush its coat every few days. Brushing and grooming your German Shepherd Doberman’s coat regularly will keep it in good condition.
Are German Shepherd Doberman Mixes Hypoallergenic?
German Shepherd Doberman mixes are not hypoallergenic. In fact, there are no truly hypoallergenic dogs since their skin and saliva may also induce allergies in people.
However, some Doberman Shepherds may be less likely to cause allergies, and it depends entirely on the genetic makeup of your German Shepherd Doberman mix.
Doberman Shepherds with the Doberman coat shed very little, with a low chance of causing allergies. On the other hand, if it inherits more from a German Shepherd, it will shed a lot, resulting in allergies.
Final Thoughts: Is a Doberman Shepherd the Right Dog for You?
If you have substantial experience with large dog breeds, then a Doberman Shepherd might be a simple addition to your life.
If you live an active lifestyle and have ample space for them, they may be the best dog for you. While apartment living with pets has been more common, it simply isn’t enough for a dog of this size and energy,
These large dogs need to have a master who will take the alpha role without hesitation. Since they can easily overpower an amateur, they won’t do well with a novice dog owner.
Meeting the needs of the German Shepherd Doberman mix is not only fulfilling, but you’ll have a great personal bodyguard that is also a loving companion.
Have you decided on getting a Doberman Shepherd mix? Let us know in the comments below!