Overview of the German Shepherd Husky Mix
Many admire the German Shepherd and Siberian Husky breeds for their brilliance, athletic capability, and stunning looks. It is no wonder they are both among the most popular breeds in the world. Chances are if you already own one of these dogs, people immediately recognize the breed when you are out on walks.
With so many attractive traits inherent to German Shepherds and Siberian Huskies, there are endless reasons for wanting to combine them. However, there are important facts that you will want to learn before taking the leap into dog ownership.
Whether you are searching for a hiking partner, a family dog, a couch buddy, or all the above, considering the pros and cons will ensure a successful experience. Certain personality traits are often passed on from the parent breeds to their offspring and should be carefully considered.
Meeting many different German Shepherd Husky mixes in person will help you understand how these personality traits are expressed in different dogs. While you can seek breeders who intentionally breed German Shepherd Huskies, it is always a better idea to look for an existing dog longing to be adopted.
Read on to learn some fun and important facts worth considering before bringing home your German Shepherd Husky mix.
1.What is a German Shepherd Husky Mix Alternatively Called?
It is completely normal to refer to this dog as a German Shepherd Husky, however, there are many alternative names that can be used. Many choose to call these dogs the following:
Gerberian Shepsky (Most Common)
Siberian Husky German Shepherd
2. German Shepherd Husky Mix Appearance
It is generally difficult to predict the appearance of a crossbreed or mixed dog. Although both parent breeds (German Shepherd and Siberian Husky) have striking looks on their own, some physical traits overlap, slightly increasing the level of predictability.
Straight, perked-up ears and long faces are characteristic of both breeds, so it is expected that their offspring will share these traits. Both have the genetics for brown eyes, while the Siberian Husky can have mixed eyes (one blue and one brown) and two blue eyes.
Both the German Shepherd and Husky breeds have athletic builds, with German Shepherds having larger and more powerful bodies and Huskies having slender, agile bodies.
Size and Weight
The height and weight range of your German Shepherd Husky will depend on whether they are male or female and which breed’s genetics are more expressed. Keep in mind that even within a breed there is a certain level of variance in the overall size.
Siberian Huskies tend to run from 20-23 inches tall and weigh from 35 to 60 pounds. They are classified as medium-sized dog.
German Shepherds average between 22-26 inches tall and typically fall in between 49 to 88 pounds. They are classified as large-sized dog.
Your Gerberian Shepsky will probably end up being in between these size and weight categories.
Both the German Shepherd and Siberian Husky breeds enjoy a thick double coat that can be either short or long. The texture of their coats also has the potential to be rough and dense or silky and soft.
Since darker coat colors are dominant traits relative to lighter colors, plenty of Gerberian Shepksy dogs will have dark fur. Lighter Shepsky mix dogs are usually the result of two lighter coat parents.
Here are some color variations that have been documented in the German Shepherd Husky mix. Keep in mind that these colors can appear pure or mixed.
3. German Shepherd Husky Mix Temperament and Personality
One of the most commonly asked questions is whether German Shepherd Husky mixes make good family dogs. The answer to that question depends on a few factors like your children’s ages, the age of your German Shepherd Husky mix, and the amount of work you are willing to put in.
With any dog meant to be integrated into a family, you will want to ensure proper training and socialization. Obedience training and socialization are crucial for German Shepherd dogs. German Shepherds can be quite protective of their owners and will need to be socialized to avoid aggression.
Since both dogs are rather large, they must be trained to obey commands, so they do not accidentally knock over small children or small animals. Getting your Gerberian Shepksy at a young age will make this process much easier as dogs are most impressionable as puppies.
Overall, these two breeds pair to make fantastic family dogs provided the effort to train and socialize is made. The result is an affectionate, athletic, and protective family dog.
Here are ways the Gerberian Shepsky is commonly described:
4. How to Train a German Shepherd Husky Mix
German Shepherd dogs have been perceived as the quintessential police and military dog for some time. This is due to their incredible intelligence and motivation to please their owners.
Owning a dog that prioritizes its owner’s commands makes the training process much easier. However, when you pair a German Shepherd and Siberian Husky, the result can be unpredictable.
Siberian Huskies are also known to be one of the smartest dogs breed, but they are also one of the most fiercely independent. Some may even say that the Husky breed can be deeply stubborn and difficult to train.
So while you are very likely to end up with a brilliant canine, training difficulty can range anywhere from being a breeze to an uphill battle. Make sure to spend plenty of time with your Gerberian Shepsky prior to adoption to ensure their temperament is what you are looking for.
5. What Kind of Owner Should I be?
Owning an extremely intelligent dog is no joke. The effort put forth to train and socialize a breed as smart as the German Shepherd Husky mix is significant, but the rewards are tenfold the investment.
To properly raise a Shepsky, one must possess great leadership skills like assertiveness, consistency, and fairness. If you can regularly train and socialize your dog using positive reinforcement methods, this may be the dog breed for you.
While it isn’t practical to expect a dog owner to be available at all times, time must be taken out of each day to exercise your Shepsky both physically and mentally. These dogs do best with owners who are regularly involved and active.
Take your Gerberian Shepsky out for long walks, agility training in the backyard, and weekend hiking adventures. Shepskies are fun and loyal companions, always ready to try something new.
6. Food and Diet Requirements
Dog food options for your Gerberian Shepsky include kibble, wet, and raw food. Each of these food types will vary greatly in quality, so it is important to look at the ingredients used. The best dog food for German Shepherd Husky mixes (and any other dog breed) will be free of fillers and unnecessary preservatives.
We personally recommend the raw food diet for maximum health benefits. This tends to be the most expensive dog feeding option, but costs can be mitigated by putting your own food together. If you choose this option, be sure to educate yourself thoroughly on dog nutrition and check in with your veterinarian.
As far as food volume goes, check the recommended feeding guidelines provided on the back of your dog food packaging. Feeding instructions will be based on the age and size of your dog. Most of the time, guidelines will include feeding amounts for weight loss and weight gain in addition to regular maintenance amounts.
7. Cost of Owning a German Shepherd Husky Mix
The cost of dog ownership will vary greatly based on the initial puppy/dog cost, food quality, and extras you may decide to purchase. Check out our guide on the cost of purchasing a German Shepherd to get an idea of what to expect.
8. Grooming a German Shepherd Husky Mix and Controlling Shedding
Gerberian Shepskies tend to be heavy shedders throughout the year and will require daily brushing to maintain their beautiful coats. Taking care of your dog’s coat is necessary for maintaining your dog’s overall health.
Different grooming tools have specific purposes, but once you have learned the basics, it becomes an easy routine to groom your dog. Here are our favorite brushes for German Shepherds, along with some brushing tips for beginners.
9. How to Properly Exercise Your German Shepherd Husky Mix
Sufficiently exercising your Gerberian Shepsky will ensure not only the health of your dog but the safety of your furniture. These dogs are very high energy and can become destructive if not given plenty of exercise.
Incorporate daily exercise for your German Shepherd Husky mix in the form of walks around the neighborhood, hiking trips, indoor training exercises, and backyard play with toys. If you are up to the task, agility training can be a fantastic bonding activity for you and your dog.
Curious about what toys will withstand the rough play of a Gerberian Shepsky? Check out our favorite toys for German Shepherds that will last.
10. Known Health Problems of German Shepherd Husky Mix
German Shepherd Husky mixes typically live from 10 to 13 years. A healthy Shepsky can even live to be 18-years-old with proper diet and exercise. However, even with our best efforts, certain health complications can get in the way. Here are some common health issues with these two breeds.
Elbow and Hip Dysplasia
There are other health considerations that need to be thought through before dog ownership. Be sure to check with your veterinarian to get more information.
Quick German Shepherd Husky Mix Summary
German Shepherd Husky mixes are getting popular for a good reason. Not only are these dogs incredibly beautiful, but they are also high in intelligence and athleticism. A properly trained a socialized Gerberian Shepsky has an immense amount of love to offer every family for many years.
Life Expectancy: 10-13 years
Weight: 45 to 88 lbs
Height: 20 to 25 inches at the shoulder
Temperament: Playful, protective, and intelligent
Activity Level: Very High Energy; needs a lot of exercise
Health Concerns: Elbow and Hip Dysplasia, eye problems
Trainability: Unpredictable but quick learners
Family Dog: Yes, if trained and socialized from a young age