|17 – 26 inches
|30 – 90 pounds
|10 – 12 years
|Tan, white, brown, fawn, black, gray
|Energetic, devoted, loyal, affectionate
|Families with children; families with other dogs
German Pits may seem intimidating and scary, but they’re actually the exact opposite. These dogs are some of the most caring and affectionate creatures out there.
They can be your perfect guard dog, therapy dog, or just an overall fluffy companion.
As the best of both worlds from two powerful breeds, German Shepherd Pitbull mixes have a lot of fascinating traits you will want to know about.
In this article, you will find details about their history, temperament, puppy prices, and a lot more.
What Is a German Shepherd Pitbull Mix?
The German Shepherd Pit mix, also known as German Pit or German Sheppit, is a combination of the German Shepherd and the Pitbull. They sport the staple GSD pointy ears and the Pitbull’s muscular physique. Despite their fierce appearance, these mixes are devoted and caring companions.
It can be easy to spot a Pitbull Shepherd mix based on appearance. These dogs carry themselves with high confidence and power like Pitbulls. They also have big body builds and long snouts like the German Shepherds.
Once you become acquainted with them, you will immediately fall in love with their endearing nature. Loyalty and commitment are hallmarks of these dogs’ demeanor.
German Shepherd Pitbull Mix Origin and History: Where Does the German Pit Come From?
Breeding the German Shepherd with Pitbull breeds may have naturally begun decades ago. But the history of the Pitbull German Shepherd mix formally dates back to the 1990s.
This was when both dog breeds were intentionally chosen for their strength and sense of authority. The goal of the breeders back then was to produce ideal companions and guard dogs.
While both parent breeds have a rich history, not much is further documented regarding the German Shepherd Pit Bull origin. Thus, let’s review the history of its parents.
The Pitbull was initially bred in the United Kingdom for dogfighting, whereas the German Shepherd was employed for herding in Germany.
Furthermore, when breeders began mixing the two mighty breeds, it instantly became famous as a designer dog breed. Breeders then saturated the market with this mix because of their popularity.
However, as years passed, a huge percentage of these dogs were being found in pounds and rescue centers.
German Shepherd Pitbull Mix Appearance: What Does a German Pit Look Like?
The appearance of the Pitbull German Shepherd mix leans more to the Pitbull parent side. You can easily tell by the pointy ears, boxy head, and massive body.
However, some Shepherd Pitbull mixes can also look a lot like German Shepherds with the long snout and bi-color coat.
Speaking of coats, there are a lot of fur variations for this breed. The Shepherd Pit mix commonly exhibits stunning brown, black, or a mixture of these colors. However, some canines can also sport gray, tan, and fawn.
These coat colors can also change as they mature, similar to their German Shepherd parent.
As per coat length, a Pitbull German Shepherd mix can either have short or medium fur, just like the short-haired GSD. But regardless of the length, they will most likely have straight coats like both of their parent breeds.
Furthermore, most German Pits will also have straight, long tails. Other notable physical characteristics of this cross are their brown almond-shaped eyes, wide mouths, and broad backs.
If you want to watch a German Pit named Lilith play frisbee, watch this video:
German Shepherd Pitbull Mix Size and Weight: How Big Do German Pits Get?
A lot of people refer to the Shepherd Pit mix as the giant version of a Pitbull because this mixed breed can grow up to 17 to 26 inches tall.
As for their body mass, adult German Shepherd Pit mixes weigh between 30 and 90 pounds.
As is the case with many large breeds, these dogs are considered fully grown when they reach the age of 18 months.
But one thing you should know about the size of these pooches is that they grow rapidly. Like the average Pitbull and German Shepherd puppy, these pooches will grow the fastest between the ages of two and six months.
You will be amazed that your German Shepherd Pitbull mix puppy will be approximately half the height of an adult at four months.
German Shepherd Pitbull Mix Temperament: Do German Pits Make Good Family Dogs?
If you’re seeking the ideal family dog, a German Shepherd Pitbull mix should be at the top of your list. Loyalty and affection are two things your family dog should have, and this mix is all about that.
Once you properly bond with these canines, they will be attached to you like velcro. Their devotion is unmatched, and they will make sure you feel how much they love you.
This mix is also impressively intelligent, like the German Shepherd and the Pitbull. Smart dogs can communicate better with their owners and can understand your gestures or facial expressions.
But intelligence can also have its drawbacks. German Shepherd Pitbull mixes are clever and can sometimes cause trouble. They are also natural leaders, so they can be too independent and sometimes be challenging to train.
Additionally, these dogs possess a strong instinct to defend their family. As a result, they can sometimes be domineering over other animals.
But a German Pit exposed to strangers and other pets at a young age will be most likely to be tamed in the long run.
READ NEXT: Male vs. Female Pitbull: Which Is Better?
German Shepherd Pitbull Mix Lifespan and Health Issues: Are German Pits Healthy Dogs?
The Pitbull German Shepherd mix is a healthy dog breed that can live between 10 and 12 years. They even live longer than the average German Shepherd and American Pit Bull Terrier.
In general, mixed-breed dogs are healthier than purebred dogs. This is due to their increased genetic diversity. Mixed breeds are frequently free of some hereditary problems prevalent in purebreds.
Nonetheless, being a parent of any dog requires a deep understanding of the health conditions they are prone to.
With that, here is a list of some health problems common to the German Shepherd Pitbull mix:
- Hip Dysplasia: Hip dysplasia can manifest in a significant decrease in movement and difficulty running. This condition is more common among the German Shepherd dog breed than the Pitbull. Furthermore, it is most likely caused by genetics.
- Skin Irritation: Genetically, Pitbull-type breeds are predisposed to skin conditions like dermatitis. The Animal Medical Center of Southern California lists flea allergy, contact allergy, and food allergy as the common culprits.
- Heart Disease: Dogs with heart disease, according to the MSD Veterinary Manual, will exhibit signs of exercise intolerance, breathlessness, and abdomen swelling. While there is no foolproof way to avoid heart disease in dogs, feeding them a balanced diet rich in good fats will help them live a longer, healthier life.
German Shepherd Pit Bull mixes are also prone to bloating. This is a very prevalent problem in the German Shepherd breed, and dogs who suffer from it exhibit restlessness, excessive drooling, and fast breathing.
In general, identifying these disorders and recognizing signs early on is the best approach to remain on top of your pup’s health. This is why bringing your pooch to routine vet visits should be of high priority.
How to Take Care of Your German Shepherd Pitbull Mix
As you’ve seen, the Pitbull German Shepherd mix has a number of health issues that need to be addressed before they become a severe problem.
In addition to regular visits to the veterinarian, you should monitor your dog’s overall health through specific exercise, diet, proper training, and exercise requirements.
Food and Diet
The size and age of your dog will determine how much you should feed them. As a large fur buddy, the German Shepherd Pit Bull mix requires a high caloric diet to keep them nourished.
Like their German Shepherd parent, feeding them between 1,200 and 2,700 calories will suffice. However, adult females can consume from 900 to 2,100 calories.
Furthermore, you can hit all their nutrition goals by serving quality dry food with supplements like probiotics and fish oil.
Feeding your Shepherd Pit mix twice daily is also ideal. You may, of course, adjust your dog’s diet to suit their specific needs, such as size, activity level, and health.
Cleaning and Grooming
Pitbull Shepherd mixes naturally have shiny skin, and proper grooming will help you maintain this.
These pups will require at least three thorough weekly brushings, preferably with the undercoat rake. This tool will help avoid the formation of uncomfortable mats near the skin.
Unlike other dog breeds, this mixed breed does not require frequent bathing. Their double coat contains natural oils, and excessive bathing can remove them.
Bathing your dog every three to four months is ideal. On the other hand, if your pup is frequently taken on outdoor adventures, they should be washed more often.
Furthermore, if your dog spends a lot of time on grass and other soft surfaces, you can cut its nails every two to three weeks.
Otherwise, it is recommended that you trim your German Shepherd Pitbull only when necessary.
Training and Exercise
A large dog breed like the Pitbull German Shepherd mix will never run out of energy. Provide them with at least three hours of exercise to ensure they receive the necessary amount of physical activity for their body.
You can go to dog parks, walk around the neighborhood, or engage them in playtime in your backyard.
This is why the German Shepherd Pit mix is not ideal for small apartments. To accommodate their size and needs, they should be in more spacious homes with yards or accessible parks.
Besides their bodies, you should also care for their mental health and behavior. Training your German Shepherd Pit mix provides mental stimulation and will help you develop a strong bond with them.
Agility training is an excellent way to increase this dog breed’s stamina and keep them fit. Meanwhile, socialization training can assist your dog in learning how to react to strangers and other animals.
Proper training can also help reduce aggressive behavior and improve overall dog temperament.
How Much Does a German Shepherd Pitbull Mix Cost? Puppy Prices and Expenses
Of course, this will depend on many factors like the breeder’s reputation, puppy age, gender, and more.
Furthermore, some German Shepherd Pitbull mixes are available for $200 to $600 in rescues and shelters. Note, though, that most of these dogs are already in their twilight years.
Besides the price of a German Sheppit puppy, you should also account for the different expenses to care for them.
If you are wondering how much their initial expenses will cost you, refer to the table below:
|Type of Expense
|Food and Treats
|$80 – $120
|Food and Water Bowls
|$10 – $35
|$40 – $200
|$50 – $500
|Leashes and Collars
|$15 – $50
|$30 – $50
|$40 – $180
|Deworming, Flea, and Tick Medications
|$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
|$605 – $2,445
Since the Shepherd Pitbull mix can grow to be either medium or large dogs, prices will vary. Owing a large dog breed will definitely bring you more expenses, so you have to be ready for them.
Furthermore, you should not limit your costs to the items above. You can also spend more on interactive dog toys and obedience training programs.
Places to Find German Shepherd Pitbull Mix Puppies for Sale and Adoption
Compared to other purebred dog breeds, hybrid dogs like the GSD Pitbull mix will be trickier to find. However, you can still find a reputable breeder online.
If you are looking for German Shepherd Pitbull mix puppies for sale, explore the sources below:
- Greenfield Puppies – Founded in 2000, the organization exhibits both purebred puppies and designer dog breeds from breeders around Pennsylvania and the surrounding regions. They have over 300 dog breeds, including German Shepherd Pits, available in over 30 states.
- Lancaster Puppies – Each German Shepherd Pitbull mix on the website comes with a full listing that includes the breeder’s address and other contact information. The puppy price, name, breed, gender, date of birth, and size are also available here.
- NextDayPets – You can filter the results on the NextDayPets website depending on age and gender. Once you’ve found the German Shepherd Pitbull mix that piques your interest on the site, you can contact the breeder directly.
Besides looking at puppies for sale, you should also consider adopting an adult German Pit.
This way, you can help provide forever homes to German Pits that have been abandoned and neglected by their previous owners.
In that case, you can refer to the list below for available German Shepherd Pitbull mixes for adoption:
- Petfinder – When searching for a German Sheppit on Petfinder, you’ll have access to information about each dog’s traits, coat length, preference, and health status. Since the dogs on Petfinder come from over 12,000 shelters and non-profit organizations, adoption prices will vary.
- German Shepherd Rescue of Orange County – To adopt a pet through this rescue, you must first complete an application for information on your experience, lifestyle, and preferences. Once you find a German Shepherd Pitbull mix you are interested in, you are encouraged to visit the dog along with your family members and other pets.
- Adopt-a-Pet – When browsing this non-profit pet-adoption site, you will find each German Shepherd Pitbull mix’s name, gender, color, age, health info, and vet updates. Each available pet also has its own story on every profile. The adoption price for this organization is between $25 and $200.
But before you do that, you should first read our ultimate guide on dog adoption.
Pros and Cons of Owning a Pitbull German Shepherd Mix
If you are still on the fence about adopting a Pitbull German Shepherd mix, weighing the pros and cons can help you make a final decision.
While this mixed breed is a creature of loyalty and care, they also have some traits not everyone can tolerate.
First, let’s get into the pros of owning a German Shepherd Pitbull mix:
- You can trust their instincts. The inherent protective instinct of Pitbull Shepherd mixes is to defend their loved ones at all costs. While this can cause them to be a bit suspecting and aloof to strangers, you can rely on their intuitions in times of trouble.
- They will never leave your side. Most of the time, the protective nature of Shepherd Pit mixes comes with their tendency to be too attached to their owners. This is often observed among German Shepherd dogs, where they form an unbreakable bond with their owner. These dogs will follow you around and will pretty much rob you of your personal space and privacy.
- These dogs will gladly participate in outdoor fun. The GSD Pitbull mix is a very active dog that requires a lot of daily exercise. They love going on walks and other outdoor adventures to stretch their long legs and have a breath of fresh air. These activities also allow them to socialize with other dogs and people.
- They can quickly adapt to various environments. Shepherd Pit mixes are physically adaptable to both indoor and outdoor environments. This does not mean that you should keep them outside the house. While Pitbull Shepherd mixes have double coats to keep them warm, they should still have access to a safe home.
Moving on, you should also consider the following drawbacks of welcoming a German Pit to your home:
- German Pits can be heavy shedders. If you are allergic to dog fur, you may have to step back for this one. German Shepherd Pitbulls shed heavily and blow their undercoats twice a year.
- They can bark nonstop. There can be a lot of reasons why your Pitbull Shepherd mix is constantly barking; one of them is boredom. These dogs will bark if they sense danger, but they also do so if they have nothing else to do. Exercise and positive reinforcement can help resolve this behavior.
- They can have aggressive tendencies. These dogs are very affectionate to their owners but can be aggressive to everyone else. Again, positive reinforcement and puppy training effectively deal with these behaviors.
- These dogs are prone to separation anxiety. Separation anxiety is one of the most common reasons Pitbull Shepherd mixes are surrendered to rescue shelters. When left alone, dogs going through this can exhibit signs of hostility and bad behavior.
Keep in mind that adorable looks should not be the only reason to adopt a dog. You should also look at their behavioral characteristics to help you determine if they are compatible with your lifestyle and preference.
Now that you know the pros and cons of owning this mixed breed, it is up to you to decide if they fit your lifestyle and needs.
Frequently Asked Questions
Are German Shepherd Pitbull Mixes Aggressive?
No, German Shepherd Pitbull mixes are not naturally aggressive canines. They may exhibit aggressive behavior when provoked or suffer from separation anxiety, but positive reinforcement and a reward system can help.
Are German Shepherd Pitbull Mixes Hypoallergenic?
No, German Shepherd Pitbull mixes are not hypoallergenic. These dogs shed moderately year-round and heavily twice a year. As a result, they are not recommended for individuals allergic to dogs.
Do German Shepherd Pitbull Mixes Shed?
Yes, German Shepherd Pitbull mixes can be heavy shedders despite having short coats.
Regular brushing and grooming can significantly reduce their shedding tendencies, but you still have to vacuum from time to time, especially if you live with people with mild allergies.
Final Thoughts: Is a German Shepherd Pitbull Mix the Right Dog for You?
The German Shepherd Pitbull mix is quite literally like a gentle giant. Despite the large size, this hybrid can be the sweetest dog you will ever meet. With proper mental stimulation, they can also be the smartest dogs ever.
As part of the larger dog breeds with strong personalities, Shepherd Pits are more suitable for an experienced dog owner. These dogs will need training, exercise, and a lot of quality dog food to fill their stomachs.
If this is your first time adopting, it would be best to sit this one out first. But if this is not your first dog, go ahead and start looking for your Pitbull German Shepherd mix.