German Shepherd Golden Retriever Mix โ€“ Your Complete Breed Guide

German shepherds are known for being strong, loyal, and sometimes intimidating. On the other hand, Golden Retrievers are famous for their super sweet personalities, social nature, and intense loyalty to their human families. Combining these two would give the best of two worlds in terms of the aesthetics and a perfect balance between companion and working dogs.

The Golden Shepherd is a mix between German Shepherd and Golden Retriever breeds. It is a relatively common and popular mix among designer dogs in the medium to large category. Due to the massive differences in aesthetics and personality, the resulting pups vary greatly.

If you are interested in these doggies, you have come to the right place. We have compiled a complete guide for newbie owners of these mixed puppies. This article includes everything you need to know about them, from their health needs and what personality traits you can expect.

LIFE SPAN12 to 15 years
PURCHASE PRICE$300 to $500
TEMPERAMENTOutgoing, friendly, loyal, protective
HEIGHT21 to 26 inches
WEIGHT50 to 90 pounds
Quick overview

How Big Will A German Shepherd Golden Retriever Mix Get?

Face And Skull Features

More often than not, these mixed dogs take after the Golden Retriever parent in terms of the skull and face features. They may have a shorter and broader snout than the long and narrow type found on German Shepherds. Their foreheads are also usually wide but may also be narrow as with Shepy.

The ears on the other hand are difficult to predict. The dog can have them fully floppy like the Goldie, erect like the Shepherd, or erect with floppy tips.

Size And Build

Golden Shepherds are large dogs and can grow up to 50 to 90 lbs in weight and 21 to 26 inches in height. Their sizes are bigger than some German Shepherd size variations including medium versions of the dog breed that can be as small as 20 inches and as light as 45 lbs.

Coat Types

The coat on this mix varies a lot and depends on the type present on the parents. Both German Shepherds and Golden Retrievers can have long or medium-length coats. Only the Golden Retrievers have varieties with very short coats. The resulting dog can have any of these based purely on genetic probability.

Color And Markings

Again, this depends on the specific colors on the parents as well as any unexpressed genes they may have. From the Golden retriever, the resulting pup may pick the golden or brown coat. If they take after the Shepy on the other hand, the possibilities are endless with all the varieties of the German Shepherd coat colors.

How Long Do Golden Shepherds Live?

Image from Instagram:@charlie.goldenshepherd

The average lifespan of a German Shepherd Golden Retriever mix is 10 to 14 years.

This is actually quite impressive for dogs that size. It has a lot to do with the fact that mixed breed dogs in general tend to be very healthy. For this mix, the conditions that actually do affect them are rarely fatal, if ever. Here are a few that you have to know about if you are interested in the doggies.

Gastric Volvulus

This is mainly associated with deep-chested dog breeds like the German Shepherd. If this mix takes the same build, they are highly likely to develop the potentially life threatening condition. It is characterized by stomach or gut twisting when it is dilated by food.

Hip Dysplasia

This condition affects both dog parents and is one of the most common health issues that face large mixed dog breeds like the Golden Shepherd. It results in abnormal joint formation which in turn causes instability, discomfort, and eventually wears down the protective cartilage. As the dog grows older, the condition may worsen ultimately causing debilitating arthritis.


Hypothyroidism is a condition marked by low levels of thyroid hormones. It affects the dogโ€™s metabolism resulting in weight gain, fatigue, and inability to regulate temperature especially in cold weather. It also affects things like the skin and fur and may manifest with fur thinning and excessive shedding.

Skin Allergies

Another very common issue with these dogs is skin disease especially irritation triggered by allergies. The specific allergens vary from dog to dog and include things like pollen, some fabrics, and most external parasites including fleas.

Geriatric Canine Vestibular Disease

This disease affects the structures in the dogโ€™s inner ear that are responsible for maintaining balance. Some of the effects on the dog include disorientation, loss of balance, and abnormal gait evident when walking.

The condition usually occurs in old age but may happen earlier in which case inner ear infections are a common culprit.

How Much Does A German Shepherd And Golden Retriever Mix Cost?

Image from Instagram:@axelthegoldenshepherd

On average, a Golden Retriever and German Shepherd mixed puppy will cost $800.

They may be more expensive especially if bred from prized bloodlines or if specific health issues are intentionally bred out. For a mixed breed dog of that size, this is a bit expensive. Here are a few things that justify the price tag.

Golden Shepherds Are Super Cute

Whatever characteristics they pick, Golden Shepherds are always really cute both as puppies and as adults. The best part is that their personality is just as cute. This might not seem like a solid reason but it is one of the major driving factors for breed pricing when it comes to dogs.

Golden Shepherds Are Very Smart

German Shepherds and Golden Retrievers are 2 of the smartest dog breeds out there. It comes as no surprise that their combined offspring are some of the sharpest dogs out there. This comes in very handy allowing you to train them for anything from fun skills to specific working dog tasks.

Golden Shepherds Are Adaptable And Can Survive And Thrive Anywhere

Golden Shepherds can survive in the city and in the country. They do well both as indoor and outdoor dogs. They are adaptable and very resilient which makes taking care of them incredibly easy. This doesnโ€™t mean that you slack on the job but it is always nice to have a dog that doesnโ€™t need to be coddled.

They Make Great Family Dogs

Finally, the fact that these mixed pooches make such amazing family pets is another reason why that price tag is not all that bad. They are great additions to any home and will offer you and your loved ones just as much love and affection as you offer them, if not more.

Are Golden Shepherds Good With Kids? Temperaments Of German Shepherd Golden Retriever Mix

Golden Retrievers and German Shepherds are quite different when it comes to their fundamental temperament traits. While they do share some traits like their intense loyalty and high levels of intelligence, they generally have very different vibes.

The mix between these two breeds takes different features from both parents. However, they often lean more towards the Golden Retriever side with their sweeter and more laid-back vibes. Here are a few more personality traits you may get to see.


German Shepherd and Golden Retriever mixes are very bold. They are not the type to shy away from adventure or even confrontation if the need arises.


German Shepherds have a reputation as being dangerous dogs and most people expect that their mixes are just as volatile. This is not the case with the Golden Shepherd. They are not the type to lash out at their owners or even attack strangers without intense provocation.

Image from Best Bully Sticks

Golden Shepherds are always the life of the party. They are curious dogs that are always excited to meet new people and see new places especially when exposed and socialized early in life.


These mixed dogs are also very active and athletic. Much as they can live happy lives indoors in apartment settings, regular outdoor time is crucial for their physical health and mental well-being. To satisfy their needs, set aside 1 to 2 hours every day for some exercise whether it is a walk around the neighborhood or a game of frisbee at the park.

Do German Shepherd Golden Retrievers Shed? Grooming Tips For German Shepherd Golden Retriever Mix

German Shepherd and Golden Retriever mixes are relatively high maintenance when it comes to grooming. This is because they tend to shed a lot especially if they have the short or medium coat types. They are also prone to stinking for a number of reasons including dental issues and complicated skin allergies.

When it comes to taking care of these doggies, you need to have the right tools in your grooming kit. These make life infinitely easier and also make it easier for you to settle into a workable routine that benefits both you and the pooch. Here are 3 of the most important of the tools you should definitely get and how best to use them.

A Good Deshedding And Detangling Tool

With these doggies, a good brushing 3 to 4 days every week should help you get rid of loose fur to prevent excessive shedding all over surfaces in your home. They also come in handy especially with the long coat mixed pooches allowing for proper detangling.

For this, we recommend you go with the Furminator Undercoat Tool. It has strong bristles that can work on any coat length or type that your German Shepherd and Golden Retriever mix will inherit.

High Quality And Dog-Friendly Shampoo

These dogs have sensitive skin and require good shampoo not only for restoration and soothing but also to prevent further irritation. With a good shampoo, you just need to wash the dog once every month or two and they should be just fine.

Seamus Cherry Blossom Whitening Dog Shampoo is awesome especially for the versions of these dogs that have their Golden Retriever parentโ€™s very bright, golden coats. The floral scent also does wonder for odor control when the dog starts to get a bit stinky.

A Pet Vacuum

Pet dander usually attracts parasites like mites and fleas which infest and terrorize your pooch. Part of grooming is also prevention in which case keeping their environment clean is a huge part of the job. The iRobot Roomba i3+ makes this easier for you by automating the process so all you have to do is program it to start the cleaning when needed.

Should I Get A German Shepherd Or A Golden Retriever? It depends on what you want the dog for. Golden Retrievers are awesome family and companion pets. German shepherds on the other hand are ideal if you want a working dog especially for protection. However, German Shepherds will also make great companion pets with early socialization. It really depends on which of the two you prefer but they are both pretty awesome.

Can Golden Retriever Live With German Shepherd? It is actually possible to have Golden Retrievers and German Shepherds coexist peacefully. However, given the territorial and dominant nature of German Shepherds, it is best to introduce them to each other as puppies and let them grow up together. It is also best to avoid pairing two males together.

Is A German Shepherd Smarter Than A Golden Retriever? The German Shepherd is considered smarter than the Golden Retriever but only by a little. In fact, according to Stanley Corenโ€™s The Intelligence of DogsGerman Shepherds rank 3rd and the Golden Retriever ranks 4th on the list of brightest dog breeds. The difference comes from the fact that Sheps are more focused and more eager to please thus easier to train.

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Pete Decker