German Shepherds and Labrador Retrievers are by far the most popular dog breeds of the century. For the past few decades, they have consistently ranked among the top 5 breeds according to the American Kennel Club. It is honestly not so hard to see why considering all that these doggies bring to the table from their strong personalities to high intelligence.
The Sheprador is a mix of German Shepherd and Labrador Retriever dogs. They offer the best of both worlds from the aesthetic to the personalities and overall versatility. Due to their similarity in build and size, this is one of those mixes where either dog breed can carry the pups depending on the size of the actual parents.
With so much awesomeness from either side, you might think about a mix of these two prized breeds as the ultimate designer doggy. Here is more on what makes the doggies special and why you are in for a treat despite the mix not being so common or popular.
Is German Shepherd And Lab A Good Mix?
The Sheprador is not a very common mix in the designer doggie world. This is because, for the most part, mixed-breed doggies tend to either include a small or medium doggy. It is actually not very common to have large breeds like these two with very similar personalities getting combined with Sheprador.
Not very common. Popular parent dog breeds but not very a popular mixed dog breed itself.
However, while it does not happen a lot, the German Shepherd Lab Mixes out there are testament of just how good of an idea mixing the two can be. Here are a few general build and aesthetic traits you can expect.
How big a Sheprador will get depends on several factors including the size of the parents and specific genetics.
Typically, Shepradors can grow up anywhere from 35 to 80 lbs in weight and 20 to 26 inches in height. This lands them within the medium to large size group that the parent dog breeds are in.
For the most part, these mixed doggies take after their German Shepherd lineage in terms of the body in terms of the build and proportions. The head, on the other hand, will likely look more like that of a Labrador with the slightly wider snout and the often droopy ears.
A Sheprador will cost you anywhere from $800 and above.
This all depends on the individual breeders and the lineage of the parents. Mixes bred from prized bloodlines will cost you a lot more than regular old lab and German Shepherd mixes.
How Long Do German Shepherd Mixes Live?
A Sheprador will typically live for 10 to 12 years.
This is slightly lower than what you can expect from the parent dog breeds, especially the German Shepherd that can live up to 14 years.
Despite this difference, Labrador German Shepherd mixes are actually quite healthy. In fact, most of the health issues that they suffer from mainly affect the quality and not the length of their lives.
The Sheprador usually takes after the German Shepherd with their energetic and active temperament. However, they have a very lazy side as well. This combined with their large appetites leaves them prone to developing obesity and its numerous complications.
These doggies are also prone to developing sensitivity to certain allergens. These include pollen, dust, mites, fleas, some fabrics, and some chemical additives in things like food and grooming products. The allergies manifest with signs of skin irritation include intense scratching and even bruising of the skin.
Gastric Dilatation And Volvulus
This is one of the few health issues that Sheprador dogs face with the potential to turn deadly. Gastric dilatation and volvulus, or GDV, happen when a full stomach twists on itself. If you notice signs of obstruction including a distended tummy, vomiting after meals, constipation, and restlessness, you might want to get it checked out.
These mixes are also likely to develop thyroid insufficiency which results in low levels of thyroid hormones. These play crucial roles in metabolism, heat regulation, and so much more. In cases of this disease, you may notice things like weight gain, reduced activity, coat changes, other signs of hypothyroidism in dogs.
Studies have shown that this musculoskeletal issue is very common in large dog breeds. Shepradors are unfortunately not spared. In really bad cases, it could result in seriously debilitating arthritis.
How Much Should A German Shepherd Lab Mix Eat?
Raising a healthy Sheprador doggy is largely about ensuring that you have them on a healthy diet. Most of the health issues they have are either triggered and worsened by an unhealthy diet or can be mitigated by a good one. To help you give your doggy the best, here are a few key feeding tips to live by.
Feed The Pooch High-Quality Food
Quality is crucial when it comes to establishing a healthy diet plan for your dog. You want to ensure that they are having real ingredients and not byproducts, fillers, or substitutes. And even with these, your doggy deserves the best quality for the sake of their health.
We recommend Pet Plate for high-quality as the ingredients they use are actually human-grade.
Get The Right Balance Of Nutrients
In addition to the quality, you also have to have the nutrients well balanced. Labrador Retriever German Shepherd mixes are high-energy dogs that tend to lead very active lives. A diet high in proteins and adequate carbs for strength and energy is the way to go. Also make sure to include fiber, vegetables, and fruits in the mix for an all-rounded diet.
Watch Their Portions
Portion control is very important as these dogs have very big appetites and can easily overindulge if allowed to do so. For an adult Sheprador, 3 to 4 cups should be enough while puppies under the age of one year can survive and thrive on 1 to 2 cups of dry kibble per day.
Supplement The Diet With Multivitamins
This is especially the case for bone supplements including compounds like glucosamine, chondroitin, and MSM. These supplements make up for whatever may be missing in even the healthiest and most balanced of diets.
Are German Shepherd Lab Mix Aggressive? Temperaments Of Shepradors
It is not considered standard behavior for either German Shepherds or Labradors to be aggressive especially when unprovoked. However, both dog breeds have been known to have very intense outbursts mainly directed at other dogs and at suspicious individuals.
The same traits are passed on to the German Shepherd Lab mix to an extent. Let’s take a closer look at their actual personality traits and whether aggression is something you need to be worried about or not.
These dogs are always aware of everything going on around them from unusual smells and sounds to unfamiliar faces. This definitely comes in handy if you are considering keeping it as a guard dog.
Protective And Loyal
Shepradors form impressive bonds with their human companions. The dogs will accept you as family and will do whatever it takes to protect you. They are particularly protective over children that they grew up with.
Mistrusting Of Strangers At First
Generally, German Shepherd Lab mixes are super friendly. However, this is not always the case at first. They take a while to assess any new individuals they interact with before letting them in and unleashing the goofiness.
In addition to this, they tend to be very responsive and eager to please. All these come in handy when it comes to training. The best way to train a German Shepherd Lab is to start with simple commands to establish your authority while using rewards for positive reinforcement.
Despite the sometimes intimidating nature of the two-parent dog breeds and the Sheprador itself, this is one of the sweetest and most loving dog mixes you will ever meet. They are the type to follow you around everywhere and demand snuggles.
Do Lab Shepherd Mixes Shed? Grooming Tips For Shepradors
German Shepherd Lab mixes are not hypoallergenic and in fact shed quite a lot.
Keeping them well-groomed and your house clean in the process is probably the most tasking part of taking care of the otherwise low-maintenance breed. However, with a good plan of action, you should be able to get into the rhythm and make the grooming easier for yourself. Here are some tips that will come in handy for this.
Brush Their Fur 4 Times A Week At Least
Whether it is a long-haired or short-haired Sheprador, regular brushing is crucial not only to de-shed but to de-matt the coat. We recommend a quick brushing with the Furminator Undercoat Tool 4 times every week or every other day.
- For Large dogs with long hair: designed especially for dogs that weigh more than 50 pounds.
- Removes loose hair: reaches through the topcoat to remove loose undercoat hair without cutting skin or damaging the...
- FURejector button: just push the button to release hair with ease.
For those rogue strands of fur that still manage to settle on your surface, iRobot Roomba i3+ would be the perfect way to take care of the mess. The automated system gives you virtually hands-off convenience to get rid of the hairy mess your pooch leaves behind.
- POWERFUL CLEANING—SCHEDULED AROUND YOUR LIFE - Whether you’re relaxing at home or out enjoying life, Roomba i3+ EVO...
- CLEAN BY ROOM, YOU’RE IN CONTROL - Roomba i3+ EVO learns your home and creates an Imprint Smart Map so you can direct...
- DON’T LIFT A FINGER FOR MONTHS- The Clean Base Automatic Dirt Disposal allows the i3+ EVO to empty itself into an...
Wash The Pooch Every 2 Months
Shepradors do not usually stink especially if they do not have any skin issues. If they do, consider increasing the interval to something like a fortnightly or monthly bath session. The choice of products also matters a lot in which case we recommend Paws & Pals 5-In-1 Oatmeal Dog Shampoo.
This shampoo does it all from conditioning, detangling, moisturizing, controlling odors, and easing irritation.
- Proudly Made in USA - Vet formulated and manufactured in Los Angeles, CA USA without sacrificing vegan and organic...
- 6-in-1 Oatmeal Pet Shampoo & Conditioner - reduced shedding – anti itch, smelly odor control, moisturizes dry skin,...
- Naturally Medicated Formula - Made with all natural ingredients plus pH balanced, alcohol free, paraben free Best for...
General Maintenance Every Week Or Two
This includes cleaning their ears which is particularly important for the droopy-eared varieties of the mix. It also includes clipping their nails at the same interval even if you don’t think that they have grown too far. Just don’t cut too close to the pulp to avoid bleeding and infections.
Which Dog Is Better German Shepherd Or Labrador? Both Labradors and German Shepherds are heavy shedders. However, the long coat GSD is known for shedding less. This makes them easier to maintain especially when it comes to the grooming aspect of their care. So if you are trying to figure out which dog is better between the German Shepherd and Labrador based on care needs, the Shepherd may be the safer choice.
Can A Labrador And A German Shepherd Live Together? When introduced early and properly socialized, German Shepherds and Labrador Retrievers can actually coexist. The problem comes when the interactions are later on in either one or both of the dog’s lives. This is the case mainly if both dogs are male as they display more dominance and being territorial on both ends.
Will My German Shepherd Lab Mix Ears Stand Up? Ears of German Shepherd Lab Mixes do not always stand up especially if they take after the droopy-eared Labrador parent. However, if they take after the German Shepherd, you may start to notice their ears perking up from 8 to 9 months. If this hasn’t happened after a year or a little over that, it may never happen.