Featured Image Credit: life_of_kodaa / Instagram
|18 – 26 inches
|45 – 60 pounds
|7 – 13 years
|Tan, cream, sable, silver, black mask, and saddle
|Alert, curious, intelligent, cautious, energetic, playful, independent, and affectionate
|Owners with active lifestyles; families with children
The Shar-Pei German Shepherd mix, also known as the Shepherd Pei or German Shar-Pei, is a new hybrid dog. As with most mixed-breed dogs, there is very little known about the Shepherd Pei.
Interestingly, a German Shepherd Shar-Pei puppy embodies a balance of the unique traits of its parents. However, it also carries the same challenges that come with taking care of the parent breeds.
This makes the German Shepherd Shar-Pei mix a very interesting breed. Hence, Before owning one, it is important to have as much information as possible about a Shepherd Pei to make sure it fits your lifestyle.
What Is a German Shepherd Shar-Pei Mix?
A German Shepherd Shar-Pei mix, also known as Shepherd Pei, is a cross between the German Shepherd and Shar-Pei. A Shepherd Pei usually has a short coat with a distinct amount of skin folds on the head and shoulders. This hybrid is confident, brave, intelligent, curious, and loyal.
The key qualities of a Shepherd Pei dog are the right balance of a German Shepherd’s confidence and the Shar-Pei’s devotedness. A German Shepherd Shar-Pei mix makes a very good household companion.
A Shepherd Pei is highly curious and intelligent; thus, it may be difficult for first-time owners of this hybrid to tame this breed. However, sufficient training and mental stimulation can keep a Shepherd Pei occupied.
The personality, physical characteristics, social behavior, and temperament of a German Shepherd Shar-Pei mix may vary a lot. However, it can be expected that a Shepherd Pei will be a source of great joy for everyone.
German Shepherd Shar-Pei Mix Origin and History
There is very little information known about the history of the first German Shepherd Shar-Pei mix. It is believed, though, that the idea of crossing these two canines emerged from the demand for designer dogs.
Of the two parent breeds, the German Shepherd is known to be a “younger” breed of dog than the Shar-Pei.
German Shepherd dogs were particularly bred as working dogs in Germany in the late 19th century. They were excellent shepherding dogs, gathering and guarding livestock.
Today, they are also well known for their service to perform K9 functions due to their natural abilities that fit the role.
Shar-Peis, on the other hand, have been in existence in China since 200 BC, making them an ancient Chinese dog breed. They came close to extinction in the 1970s but were eventually revived and recognized by the AKC in 1992.
Today, the hybrid of these two, the Shepherd Pei, is getting more attention, and more breeders are beginning to show interest in this unique canine hybrid because of its appealing looks and lovable personality.
German Shepherd Shar-Pei Mix Appearance
Hybrid dogs are expected to get the physical attributes of both of their parents. Remarkably, a German Shepherd Shar-Pei offspring tends to take on more of the German Shepherd’s physical attributes.
A Shepherd Pei’s size will range between medium and large, with rectangular build, broad shoulders, and a long and slightly thick snout. The stance is strong, athletic, and sturdy.
A German Shepherd Shar-Pei mix’s tail resembles a German Shepherd’s tail. The ears are pointy and typically upright, but some Shepherd Pei can have folded pointy ears similar to the Shar-Pei’s ears.
German Shepherd dogs have double-coated fur, while Shar-Peis have short and smooth fur. These distinct differences in the coating can result in an unpredictable coating in their cross.
Most Shepherd Peis take on the short and smooth coat of the Shar-Pei. In terms of color, Shar-Peis have 18 standard colors, while German Shepherds have around 10. As a result, Shepherd Peis have a wide variety of coat variants.
The eyes of a Shar-Pei and German Shepherd mix may also vary based on the eye colors of the parents. Shar-Peis have small, almond-shaped, brown eyes, while German Shepherd dogs commonly have brown eyes.
Furthermore, a Shar-Pei Shepherd mix may take on the wrinkly skin feature of its Shar-Pei parent. While the skin folds will not be very dominant in the face, Shepherd Peis may have folds on their shoulders and heads.
German Shepherd Shar-Pei Mix Size and Weight
The average size and weight of a Shar-Pei German Shepherd mix fall in the medium and large breed categories. A Shepherd Pei’s build, height, and weight are expected to be the average of its parents’ size.
As a result, the average height of a Shepherd Pei ranges from 18 to 26 inches, and its weight can be anywhere between 45 and 60 pounds. A Shepherd Pei adapts a strong and powerful physique from its parents.
As with many other physical traits of a Shepherd Pei hybrid, it is difficult to predict the actual size and weight of the dog. Even puppies within the same litter may differ based on which parent they take after.
German Shepherd Shar-Pei Mix Temperament and Personality
A Shepherd Pei mix will generally exhibit the temperament and personality traits of either or both parents, but one thing you can be sure of is the loyalty of this hybrid, which is a trait carried by both parents.
Additionally, this hybrid is smart, confident, alert, resilient, very energetic, highly inquisitive, and brave, especially if it takes after its German Shepherd parent. However, it may also be cautious towards strangers in this case.
A Shepherd Pei can also inherit a Shar-Pei’s affectionate, calm, independent, playful, and devoted nature.
Given some notable differences in the traits of a German Shepherd and Shar-Pei, expect the Shepherd Pei mix offspring to exhibit the right balance of the traits and qualities of the parents.
To get a glimpse of how fun-loving this canine breed is, here is an adorable video of a German Shepherd Shar-Pei mix in its different life stages:
German Shepherd Shar-Pei Mix Lifespan and Health Issues
The lifespan of a Shepherd Pei may be anywhere from 7 to 13 years, which is based on the life expectancy of the German Shepherd Dog and the Chinese Shar-Pei.
Further, a Shepherd Pei will likely inherit either or both parents’ common health problems. Hence, it is best to know some of these issues early on.
Below are some of the common health issues that are common in Shepherd Peis:
- Hip and Elbow Dysplasia: Hip and elbow dysplasia are conditions where the elbow and hip joints and bones do not fit perfectly, resulting in pain, lameness, and osteoarthritis in dogs. Dysplasia is a hereditary health issue that is much more common among larger breeds like the German Shar-Pei.
- Gastric Dilatation and Volvulus (GDV): GDV or bloat is a disorder that is particularly common among deep-chested large canine breeds. In this condition, gas in the stomach causes it to twist, blocking both the entry and exit ways of the organ. Urgent surgery is needed to correct this condition.
- Degenerative Myelopathy (DM): DM, otherwise known as chronic degenerative radiculomyelopathy (CDRM), is a chronic and progressive degenerative disease that affects the spinal cord of the dog, resulting in slow and progressive paralysis of the dog’s hind limbs.
Due to these health vulnerabilities exhibited by German Shepherd Shar-Pei mixes, it is best to have scheduled visits to your local vet to prevent these from developing.
Further, it is best to get pet insurance coverage for your dog, as it may come in handy in the event of a medical emergency.
How to Take Care of Your Shar-Pei German Shepherd Mix
Every dog breed has unique dietary requirements to achieve optimum health. Further, grooming, training, and exercise are also critical considerations that owners of a German Shepherd Shar-Pei mix should be aware of.
Food and Diet
Large dog breeds have unique metabolic requirements for them to maintain their healthy state for their size. A Shepherd Pei must be given food with a high protein concentration, followed by fats and fiber.
Home-made meals using fresh ingredients such as lean meat and small portions of animal organs, vegetables, and select herbs are also recommended.
The key to determining the best diet for a German Shepherd Shar-Pei mix is understanding what works best for the dog’s needs. This is best done with the help of a pet nutritionist or a veterinarian.
Cleaning and Grooming
Owners of a Shepherd Pei mix should first consider the type of coat of their dog. Since a Shar-Pei and a German Shepherd requires minimal brushing, Shepherd Peis are also low maintenance in general.
Further, Occasional baths must be given to rid the dog of dust, pollen, and other irritants that can cause skin allergies. Nails must be trimmed as needed, too, to prevent injuries or nails from separating from the quick.
Also, observe for possible irritation on the skin surrounding the toes. Owners must always check for possible signs of skin irritation as both German Shepherds and Shar-Peis are genetically prone to skin allergies.
The face of a Shepherd Pei mix must likewise be cleaned regularly, focusing on the folds of the skin to avoid the accumulation of dirt and small particles between the folds.
The ears of a Shepherd Pei mix must also be cleaned regularly with a mild cleanser. Avoid using harsh soaps or cleansers that can irritate Shepherd Pei’s skin.
Training and Exercise
A Shepherd Pei mix must be given sufficient physical activity. German Shepherds are inherently active dogs. Similarly, Shar-Peis are curious and playful. Hence, keeping Shepherd Peis active is vital for its well-being.
Daily exercise helps prevent Shepherd Peis from getting bored and stressed. This will provide them with the necessary mental stimulation while also keeping them preoccupied.
Obedience training is highly recommended to be included in the daily exercise and activity of a Shepherd Pei. This must begin while a Shepherd Pei is still young to prevent it from being stubborn as they grow.
A Shepherd Pei is a good outdoor adventure companion too. Going on a nature tour can provide the opportunity for this dog to get acquainted with a variety of environmental conditions.
How Much Does a German Shepherd Shar-Pei Mix Cost? Puppy Prices & Expenses
The average price of a German Shar-Pei mix can range from $750 to $1,600. As with other dogs, the pricing for these dogs may be influenced by the pedigree of the parent dogs, location, and reputation of the breeder.
Apart from the cost of the puppy, there are also recurring costs that owners need to allocate.
The table below summarizes the initial expenses associated with owning a German Shar-Pei mix:
|Type of Expense
|Food and Treats
|$100 – $120
|Food and Water Bowls
|$15 – $35
|$50 – $200
|$60 – $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
|$650 – $2,445
The figures listed are only estimated costs and can vary based on location. Total average expenses can increase depending on other needs of the pet, such as medication for allergies and special dietary needs.
Places to Find German Shepherd Shar-Pei Mix Puppies for Sale and Adoption
Due to the limited available information about a Shar-Pei German Shepherd mix, finding a reputable breeder can become a challenge.
However, you would be glad to know that there is an abundance of resources on the internet that can help in finding this hybrid. For first-time buyers, our puppy-buying guide is a highly recommended reading.
Some of the online sites to find a Shar-Pei German Shepherd mix are the following:
- Lancaster Puppies – This website links different breeders of German Shepherd mixes across different states in the country, including ones mixed with the Shar-Pei. Their user-friendly interface allows you to filter dogs based on price, size, gender, and location.
- Greenfield Puppies – This advertising platform offers a variety of German Shepherd mix puppies, which may include Shepherd Peis. Every puppy they sell in Pennsylvania carries a 30-day health guarantee, while they ensure that puppies sold in every state follow its guidelines and laws protecting buyers.
- Puppyfinder – This website is a repository of different dog breeds for sale. Interested individuals can search for a Shar-Pei German Shepherd mix puppy by filtering the search options. The prices vary depending on the breeder, the breed mix, and the location.
In case you are considering adoption as an option in securing a Shepherd Pei, it would be great to go through this ultimate adoption guide first to equip you with the knowledge to get you approved.
Here are some rescue organizations where you may find a German Shar-Pei mix:
- Westside German Shepherd Rescue of Los Angeles – Established in 2002, this non-profit no-kill organization is committed to rescuing GSDs and their mixes from high-kill shelters. Their standard adoption fee is about $375 to $475, which also applies to GSD Shar-Pei mixes that may appear in their listings.
- German Shepherd Dog Rescue of Georgia (GSDRGA) – Operational since 2004, the GSDRGA does not have a rescue facility and instead utilizes temporary foster homes provided by its volunteers for their rescues. You need to answer an application form and go through a screening process to adopt a Shepherd Pei from them.
- German Shepherd Rescue of Orange County (GSROC) – Half of this rescue’s adoptable GSDs and their mixes come from owners who are no longer able to take care of their dogs, while half are plucked from animal shelters throughout Southern California. Careful screening is done for potential adopters of their dogs to make sure that the dogs are selected to fit their lifestyles.
To have more options for adoptable German Shepherd Shar-Pei mixes, check this list of German Shepherd rescue organizations.
Pros and Cons of Owning a Shar-Pei German Shepherd Mix
Before buying or adopting a Shar-Pei German Shepherd mix dog, it is important to be aware of the pros and cons of owning one.
Some of the pros of owning a Shar-Pei German Shepherd dog are as follows:
- Excellent outdoor buddy: The athletic and energetic nature of a Shar-Pei German Shepherd makes the breed an ideal adventure buddy. They do not tire out easily and can walk for hours on a stretch.
- Great house companion and guard dog: You can depend on a Shar-Pei German Shepherd to guard your house and family. Its alertness and high sensing qualities can immediately signal you of potential dangers lurking around your house.
- Good with children and other dogs: Despite being cautious towards strangers, a Shar-Pei German Shepherd can easily ease up on people. They can also get along well with other dogs and make good playmates for children.
On the other hand, some of the cons of owning a Shar-Pei German Shepherd dog are as follows:
- Gets bored easily: Because both German Shepherd and Shar-Pei require high mental stimulation, lack of daily physical activity can make a Shar-Pei German Shepherd mix easily bored. This can result in destructive behaviors if not paid attention to.
- Variety of possible health issues: The genetic disposition of German Shepherd and Shar-Pei breeds makes the Shar-Pei German Shepherd hybrid genetically predisposed to different types of health concerns. Treatment and medication can be costly for the owners.
- Barking: Barking is used by dogs to express themselves. A Shar-Pei German Shepherd dog can be reactive to its environment, and this can trigger them to bark incessantly.
Frequently Asked Questions
Are Shar-Pei German Shepherd Mixes Good Dogs?
The alert and protective nature of a Shepherd Pei makes the breed a very good house companion and guard dog. They are also excellent companions for kids and are very sociable with other dogs as well.
However, as a curious and inquisitive dog, a Shepherd Pei can also be stubborn at times. The best way to avoid developing behavioral issues among dogs is to keep them occupied with play and physical activities.
Do Shar-Pei German Shepherd Mixes Shed?
A Shepherd Pei mix may shed at least once or twice a year — a trait inherited from the GSD parent.
They may rarely shed if they inherit the Shar-Pei gene more, but skin allergies and stress can trigger excessive fur shedding.
Are Shar-Pei German Shepherd Mixes Hypoallergenic?
Genetically, both German Shepherd Dogs and Shar-Peis are not hypoallergenic breeds, which makes the Shepherd Pei non-hypoallergenic as well.
Hence, this hybrid may not be a wise choice for potential owners who suffer from allergies, especially from dander.
Do German Shepherd Shar-Pei Mixes Bark a Lot?
The German Shepherd mix may bark a lot, but it will also depend on the behavior of the parent gene they inherit more.
A German Shepherd is a frequent barker due to its inherent tendency to guide, lead, and herd. Meanwhile, a Shar-Pei is more reserved and observant.
So, if the hybrid offspring takes after the GSD more, expect it to bark more often. If your dog turns out to be an avid barker, read our guide on dog barking to learn how to control their barking.
Final Thoughts: Is a Shar-Pei German Shepherd Mix the Right Dog for You?
Owning a Shepherd Pei mix can be demanding due to the required daily activities of the dog, the list of potential health issues it may experience, and the costs associated with owning and maintaining its daily needs.
However, a Shepherd Pei mix is a good addition to the family both as a playmate for children and as a guard dog. Being a devoted breed, a Shepherd Pei is also protective towards its humans.
Because hybrids can be unpredictable due to the genetic differences of the parents, the social traits and behavioral qualities of a Shepherd Pei mix are rooted in the traits of their German Shepherd and Shar-Pei parents too.
Are you planning to add this mixed-breed dog to your family soon? Let us know what you think about the German Shepherd Shar-Pei mix in the comments below!