German shepherds have for the last decade or so held steadily in the top 3 rank of most popular dog breeds according to the American Kennel Club. Dachshunds are also pretty popular especially in the lap dog category.
The dachshund shepherd mix, though not very common, is equally as appreciated. Now I must admit that this is one mixed breed doggy that I did not see coming given how fundamentally different the two breeds are.
However, their unique appearance and strong personalities actually works and if you are interested in one you have a lot to look forward to.
A German dachshund is a mixed breed dog from a German shepherd and a dachshund. Due to the differences in size, breeders prefer to have the German shepherd as the female carrying the pups.
The resulting mix usually takes after the dachshund in terms of build with the sausage dog silhouette. In terms of size, the dogs range from small to medium. Everything else from coat traits to temperament varies from puppy to puppy.
In the sections below, we shall take a look at everything that makes the German shepherd dachshund mix so special from appearance to grooming needs. That way, you will be able to make an informed decision when it comes to getting and raising one of your own.
Can A Dachshund Breed With A German Shepherd? Introducing The Dachshund Shepherd
As earlier mentioned, a dachshund shepherd is a mixed breed doggy produced by breeding a female German shepherd with a male dachshund. More often than not, the contributing dachshund is of regular size but it could be a miniature doxie or a larger one. With this combination, the female German shepherd is in the best position to safely carry and deliver the mixed pooches whether they end up being large, medium or small.
In order for you to understand what to expect from the dachshund shepherd, you have to have a bit of understanding about their parents. Let’s take a closer look at them.
Dachshunds are a small breed of dog that are known for their unique build. They have long torsos and disproportionately short and muscular legs. The breed can be traced back to Germany where it was used as a hunting dog.
The German shepherd on the other hand is a medium to large breed of dog that can also be traced back to Germany. They are known for their strength, bravery and intelligence. In the past and now, they have been used in different capacities from herding aids and guard dogs to law enforcement and military work.
The dachshund shepherd takes after both of these dogs in a lot of ways. When it comes to the build. They are more often than not small to medium dogs with a more proportionate version of the sausage dog silhouette.
They are also known for their coat colors which range from dark brown and intense tans to black, strikingly similar to the sheltered pets of the 46th POTUS. They also usually have the signature dark face mask that is found in German shepherds.
How Big Do German Shepherd Dachshund Mixes Get?
The size that a dachshund shepherd mix will grow to is quite hard to predict. This is because of the existing size differences between the small doxie and the beastly shepherds.
It all depends on genetics and chance. For some perspective, here is what you would expect from both parents.
Dachshunds are considered small dogs. When it comes to the height, they are very short as a result of their stubby, little legs. Dachshunds grow to an average of 15 inches in height at their tallest. With weight on the other hand, the range is pretty wide and the doxie can weigh between 16 to 30 pounds.
This depends on several factors including diet, gender, and health. It is also influenced by the specific type of doxie with miniature and rabbit dachshunds being significantly smaller and lighter.
On the other hand, German shepherds can measure 22 to 26 inches at maturity and can weigh anywhere from 48 to 88 pounds. Indeed they are quite large.
More often than not, dachshund shepherd mixes fall in the middle when it comes to size and are considered medium-sized dogs. They measure10 to 20 inches in height and weigh between 20 to 60 pounds.
These mixed breed pooches can be smaller than the ranges provided. This usually happens if a regular German shepherd is bred with a doxie that is smaller than the regular size. They may also be significantly larger and this is often due to strong genetics from the shepherd parent.
However, they never grow to the height and size of the German shepherd.
A Dachshund Shepherd’s Temperament And Personality
Dachshunds are known for their playful and affectionate nature.
They also have a bad reputation of being occasionally stubborn and aggressive. German shepherds are considered intelligent, obedient, and brave which is why they are so popular. However, they can be a bit aloof and mistrusting and are generally not the most affectionate of pooches.
Despite these differences, dachshunds and German shepherds share several personality traits which are often passed down to the mixed doggy. Here are a few that you may come across.
Dachshund shepherd mixes are very confident dogs and they will walk all over your house like they own it. This makes them open to exploring unfamiliar places and even human beings which makes socialization easier.
They take after both parents who are celebrated for their intelligence. German shepherds, in particular, are super smart and their contribution to this mix makes the resulting dog smarter and much easier to live with.
Dachshund shepherds are more affectionate than their German shepherd parents. However, they do not show this love to everyone. Like doxies, they have also been shown to cling emotionally to one member of the family.
These doggies are not exactly the most independent all the time. They particularly hate being left alone whether you are leaving for work or for a different room in your house. This is often a sign of separation anxiety which is something you will have to deal with sooner rather than later.
Common Health Issues Of The Dachshund Shepherd
For the most part, dachshund shepherd mixes are pretty healthy and strong. They have a lifespan of 7 to 14 years. For some perspective, dachshunds live for 12 to 16 years while German shepherds have a lifespan of 9 to 13 years.
Despite being strong, they occasionally suffer from some diseases that are inherited from both parents. They include:
Bone and joint problems
This is more likely to happen if the dachshund shepherd ends up being short like the doxie parent. Some of the common problems they face in this case include hip and shoulder dysplasia, patellar luxation, and intervertebral disc disease.
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These commonly manifest in old age for the dachshund shepherd. They include conditions like progressive retinal atrophy which slowly results in blindness in both eyes. Another common problem here is cataracts. They affect the eyes separately and may cause blindness if not removed.
Heart diseases in dachshund German shepherd mixes may either be congenital, age-related, or due to obesity. Mitral valve disease is the most common in this case and requires urgent intervention for the pooch to survive.
This includes conditions like autoimmune thyroiditis and hypothyroidism. They affect the production of thyroid hormones leading to either excess or deficiency with consequences in several different systems in the body.
This is commonly seen with dachshund shepherds that have droopy ears. The warmth and darkness provided encourages growth of fungi and bacteria that could cause ear infections
Dachshund Shepherd Shedding Challenge
Dachshund shepherds are notorious for their shedding. It is something you definitely have to factor in when it comes to grooming and cleaning up after the dog if you are considering getting one. It would also take a bit more effort to live comfortably with the dog if someone in the house is allergic.
These dogs tend to have long coats with either straight or wiry fur. They may take after the single-layer coat of the doxie or the double layer option from shepherds. The latter is especially common with wire-haired dachshund shepherds.
All these shed at different rates and in different volumes. However, regular grooming is necessary to keep things in check to avoid turning your home into one giant furball.
Brushing will always be the easiest and most effective way to deal with moderate to heavy shedding as is the case with dachshund shepherds. It helps to detangle fur and get rid of loose strands that would otherwise have been strewn all over your home. With these doggies in particular, you should aim to do it 2 to 3 times every week.
Vacuuming regularly will also help you deal with the dachshund shepherd shedding challenges.
The VACPOWER Handheld Vacuum Cleaner will go a long way towards ensuring that your cleaning responsibilities are easier to execute perfectly. It is designed to help you get rid of fur not only on the floor and carpets but also on furniture including dog beds.
That way whatever does manage to escape your pooch’s coat does not last long enough on your surfaces to irritate you physically or psychologically.
Are Dachshund Shepherds Aggressive? Yes, dachshund shepherds have a history of getting aggressive. They get this from both sides of the family. Fortunately, they do not have random outbursts for no good reason so you do not have to worry about attacks when you go out together. However, they may overreact when they feel threatened in which case all they need is time and a familiar face and they will calm down
Do Dachshund Shepherds Make Good Family Dogs? Dachshund shepherds are fantastic family pets. They are very affectionate and fill your home with love. They are also significantly easier to train due to the intelligence inherited from both parents which makes it easier to live with them. You will also have a great time together playing with the active furry little buddies.
Do Dachshund Shepherds Make Good Guard Dogs? Dachshund shepherds can actually be used as guard dogs. They take after their German shepherd parents in their bravery and intelligence which are two traits that make for excellent guard dogs. They also do not often bark unless there is a good reason to do so and you therefore do not have to worry about false alarms.