Where To Adopt Of Buy A German Shepherd
If you think you’d like to adopt a German shepherd, start by contacting one of the following organizations:
These groups will be able to provide guidance and next steps for adoption. If you aren’t certain the breed is right for you, you may be able to try foster care to test if a GSD is a good fit for your home.
History And Original Purpose
What is a German Shepherd Lab mix all about?
A Labrador German Shepherd is a mixed or designer breed that results from the mating of a purebred German Shepherd Dog with a purebred Labrador Retriever.
Its no wonder that the Labrador cross German Shepherd was developed, what with its parents being the American Kennel Clubs top two most popular dog breeds!
Lets dive a little deeper into the lineage of the Lab Shepherd mix.
How To Care For A German Shepherd
A German Shepherd puppy can become one of the best companions a pet parent could ask for, but they dont come work-free. German Shepherds need regular grooming, plenty of exercise and a lot of training. However, these pups are quick studies, and all your efforts will be rewarded.
A German Shepherds grooming needs are rigorous compared to other dog breeds. Their dense double coat protects them from sun exposure and keeps them warm in the winter and cool in the summer. Brush your pup every day with a pin brush to keep the coat shiny, clean and healthy, especially in the spring and fall when they shed the most . Bathing too frequently can strip their coat of its natural oils, so plan on bathing your German Shepherd every three to four months, or when they get really dirty.
During their daily grooming sessions, brush your German Shepherds teeth with a canine toothbrush and toothpaste to prevent tartar buildup, and have your vet professionally clean their teeth once a year. German Shepherds ears do not need to be cleaned regularly, but while youre brushing out their coat, be on the lookout for signs of infection such as redness and ear odor.
About once a month, your pups nails will need a trim if they are not ground down naturally through all that exercise. Youll know its time when you hear them clacking on hard surfaces. Get the how-to here.
Don’t Miss: How Often Bathe German Shepherd
Are Golden Retrievers Easy To Train
The short answer is yes. Golden retrievers are easy to train because theyre smart, loyal dogs that love to please people. They were bred to be hunting dogs and work with humans, so its in their nature to be obedient. In fact, in the 2018 AKC National Obedience Championship, Streak, a golden retriever, was the winner!
German Shepherd Lab Mix Grooming
Labrador German Shepherd mix dogs require little grooming besides a good going over with a sturdy brush once or twice a week. So, if you bring home a German Shepherd Labrador cross, gathering up their lost hair will be a never-ending task! A good vacuum cleaner is essential. This might be reason enough to choose a different crossbreed if you have a busy family or someone with allergies in the home.
What Causes The Liver Color
A liver German shepherds brown color is caused by a recessive gene called the B locus. Essentially, the gene occupies some loci on the chromosomes, ultimately dictating the pattern of the dogs body. Canines possess different loci with some being more dominant than others. What the recessive B locus gene does is suppress the black color of the dogs coat. As a result, the black becomes liver with the exception of the eyes.
The liver gene is passed down from the parent dog to the puppy. Apparently, the gene is a naturally occurring material within the German shepherd gene pool. For the puppy to have the brown color, both parents should have the gene and transfer it via the DNA material to the offspring. This is not to say that the parents of liver GSD must be liver-colored as well. As long as they have the B locus gene, they can cause coloring in their puppy.
The liver color is sometimes referred to as a dilute. Essentially, what this means is that the black color on the GSD has been diluted to appear more brown in the case of liver GSDor to look more blue or grey in the case of a blue GSD.
It is worth mentioning that the liver gene doesnt affect coat patterns. So, you can have:
- Sable liver
- Liver and tan saddle back
- Solid liver
- Bi-color liver
Gsds Provide Constant Companionship
In truth, German Shepherd owners are never lonely because their loyal canines are always by their side. Although GSDs are sometimes slow to warm to strangers, they are gentle and loving with their families. Their affectionate and dedicated personalities are a bonus of the breed, and they can be particularly fond of children. This means your GSD wants to spend time with you rather than being left alone all day, every day. Allowing your German Shepherd to be with you as much as possible will bring out the best in your dog.
Recommended Reading: Is My German Shepherd Too Skinny
Offer Them The Appropriate Chew Toys
As your Shepherds strength increases so do their desires to chew on increases.
Look for more indestructible toys to keep your GSD busy and continue to offer chew treats to work their jaws.
Dont buy just any chew toys, as German Shepherds have one of the most powerful bites.
Get a chew toy to reduce their boredom and bad behaviors from this list of approved, German Shepherd puppy chew toys.
Find larger chews so you minimize the potential for choking and their jaws get a good workout. Your puppys adult teeth are still pushing through and this can cause pain, but chewing helps to soothe their gums.
Chewing also helps your puppy to calm themselves.
Giving your puppy a chew toy when they are biting an unapproved item redirects their attention to the right item.
Where To Get A German Shepherd Puppy
Never buy a German Shepherd puppy from a pet store or from an Internet site that will ship a pup to you without asking you any questions beyond “Check or charge?” These puppies come from puppy mills. They will not only be sickly, but they will have missed a major learning period for basic training and will be harder to train and more uncontrollable.
The best German Shepherd puppies come from breeders, animal shelters, or rescuers. German Shepherds are most often abandoned when they are six months old and past the cute stage.
Don’t Miss: How To Keep A German Shepherd Smelling Good
Lab Shepherd Mix Exercise Requirements
You will need to commit to exercising and training your mix every day, come rain or shine. This doesnt just need to involve physically going for a long walk, but can also incorporate training sessions as well.
When considering welcoming this mixed breed into your home, you should plan for lots of walking, running, and playing.
There should also be plenty of room in your house and/or yard for your Sheprador to play and stretch his legs.
And for some extra help and guidance on training GSDs and your German Shepherd Lab mix, take a look at our in-depth guide.
Who Is The Best Human For A German Shepherd
German shepherds love being a part of a high-energy family or with someone who leads an active life. A sedentary lifestyle doesnt work for this herding breed, as they love to learn, play, and be a part of their human pack! German shepherd puppies can get distracted easily. Even though they love children and family life, while training, its best to have them focus only on the task theyre learning so as to avoid sensory overload.
German shepherds are a tried and true family dog. They love swimming , running, and romping in a big backyard. Theyre highly social and friendly dogs, so a busy household works well for them. They also need plenty of affection and snuggles. Due to their hunting heritage, they love to play fetch!
Don’t Miss: Why Do German Shepherds Whine So Much
Advantages Of Wet Food:
Wet food largely fulfills the water requirements of GS dogs. Wet food is delicious in taste as well as contains a high level of proteins.
Following are the advantages of wet food:
- Wet food has 80% water content. This much water content prevents dehydration in GS puppies.
- Canned foods contain a high level of protein and fat.
- Canned foods have a low amount of carbohydrates. The high carbohydrate content is bad for GS puppies. So canned foods are ideal for them.
- Wet foods are easily digested.
- Wet canned foods fulfill all the nutritional needs of a 4 week old German Shepherd puppy.
- Canned foods proved to be a complete diet for GS puppies.
- Canned foods are considered beneficial in maintaining urinary functions and the urinary tract.
German Shepherd Rottweiler Mix Health
There are some fairly severe health problems that can come with owning a German Shepherd Rottweiler mix. These include:
- Heart Problems
- Joint Dysplasia
Feeding your dog quality food, allowing for enough activity during the day, and having him routinely checked by a veterinarian will help to stave off these conditions.
Also Check: How To Train A German Shepherd To Protect
Does This Breed Get Along With Other Pets
Yes. They can. Again, proper socialization is essential. If your dog is never introduced to other dogs at a young age, then they may never get along with other pets. They wont know how to interact with dogs or other pets and may become fearful or aggressive when you bring another one home later.
However, if your dog is taken around other dogs often, they will learn to interact appropriately and will be fine around them. Of course, due to their protective nature, your dog may not like it when other dogs come into their home. This often means that they will need extra time to warm up to new dogs.
Because of their prey drive, these dogs will not get along well with cats. They will chase them, and there is little socialization can do to fix this. However, some of these dogs are so well-disciplined that they can be taught to sit and stay instead of chasing cats. This involves constant supervision, though. The dog and cat wont be able to exist peacefully when left to their own devices.
Would They Make A Good Pet
Due to the calm, loyal, and patient nature of German Shepherd dogs, easy adaptability, they are considered good as house dogs. They have a caring temperament, high intelligence level, loyalty for their owners, the perfect qualities one needs in a pet dog. These dogs respect their owners and would protect them with their lives as seen in many life instances. They make wonderful, energetic companions and can be taught to do almost anything. Female German Shepherds may have less tolerance than male German Shepherds towards other family dogs.
Recommended Reading: Why Are German Shepherds So Smart
German Shepherd Lab Mix Health
The good news is that dogs joints and eyes can be screened before they breed, so that individuals who suffer from joint dysplasia or poor eyesight can be removed from breeding lines. Furthermore, conditions like obesity are within our control as pet owners and can be prevented.
And its possible that by breeding a Labrador cross German Shepherd, the relatively robust health of the Lab will balance out the misfortunes of the German Shepherd and improve the health of their puppies. However there hasnt been any clinical research to prove or quantify that yet.
In the meantime, the best thing you can do for your future German Shepherd Lab mix puppy is ask as many questions as possible about the health and medical history of their parents, and request certificates of health screening. So what impact do these health concerns have on the life expectancy of this breed?
German Shepherd Lab Mix Socialization
Socialization is the process of making a dog comfortable with other animals, people, places and activities. Even for breeds that are known to be friendly and easy-going, like Labradors, socialization is very important. German Shepherd Labs are likely to inherit a love of people and company from both sides of their family tree. But socializing them properly as puppies will be vital to give them the confidence they need in meeting new people.
German Shepherds, despite their great loyalty to their family, can be wary of strangers. So thorough socialization from puppyhood is essential, even for a GSD mix. For instance, Socialization can involve having new people call over to the house regularly so your pup gets used to new faces and voices. It can also involve introducing your puppy to new dogs, cats, children and other animals so that they do not become fearful or territorial.
In general, training from an early age is always a good idea. And the German Shepherd Lab cross has some specific training and exercise requirements.
Recommended Reading: What Size Harness For German Shepherd
Ask For Your Breeders Help
Nobody knows your puppy better than the breeder where you are getting it from. They will have spent the first weeks of your puppys life with it, and they also will have a very deep knowledge of everything about the mother and the father. So by default, this knowledge enables the breeder to be very good at placing the proper puppies with the proper personalities.
Does The Akc Recognize Liver Gsds
The American Kennel Club has set rules and regulations regarding acceptable dog breeds. They use these to determine whether a dog should be certified by them or not. Often, they do this to ensure moral standards of breeding dogs are adhered to. Being recognized by the AKC means your dog can participate in sporting events among other benefits.
Typically, there are six colors and five color patterns of the German shepherd breed recognized by the AKC. These colors include black, grey, blue, sable, liver, and white while the patterns are black and cream, black and tan, black and red, bi-color, and black and silver. AKC insists that they favor strong rich colors over pale or washed-out colors. White is sadly disqualified as a breed standard claiming it is a danger for breeding. This is because of the absence of pigmentation which can mean weakness genetically.
The liver, cream, and blue varieties are termed as faults by the breed standards in the show ring. Thankfully, a liver-colored GSD is recognized by the AKC. It is worth noting that although the AKC recognizes liver GSDs, it is specific on the pattern. The color has to be solid liver. Any other patterns such as black and liver or liver and tan arent acceptable as breed standards.
You May Like: How To Trim A German Shepherds Nails
White Swiss Shepherd Dog
This gorgeous breed is quite closely related to the German Shepherd. In fact, you could argue they are one in the same.
The White Swiss Shepherd dog descended from White Shepherds in the 1960s.
Because of their striking difference in appearance their variety was given a different breed name. However, they soon gained popularity in the US, Canada, and Switzerland.
While they share many of the characteristics of a German Shepherd, it is generally said the White Swiss Shepherd is a little bit better behaved. They tend to be more eager to please. However, they may also be more sensitive, and do not respond well to scolding.
Phaomelanin Intensity And The I Locus
So given the chart above, how could a German Shepherd ever be white? The answer is in the E Locus and another gene Ive hinted at but havent explained, the Intensity or I Locus. This gene hasnt actually been mapped yet, so we dont know how many variations or alleles it has, or if its even a single gene! What we do know is that, in German Shepherds, there exists a recessive allele that significantly reduces the dogs ability to produce Phaeomelanin , to the point where it appears white.
What makes the Intensity Locus interesting is that it ONLY impacts the production of Phaeomelanin . This means that if a dog is able to produce Eumelanin, it is regular black. This is why some German Shepherds are black and tan while others are black and red. On their A Locus, both are at/a or at/at, but their Intensity Locus impacts the amount of Phaeomelonin they can produce.
A white German Shepherds Intensity Locus has dialed their Phaeomelonin all the way down to nothing, but what if they werent e/e and could still produce Eumelanin? In breed terms, we typically call these GSDs Silver in color, such as a Silver Sable GSD or a Black and Silver GSD.
What does this mean for the charts above?
Which Gsd Color Is Right For You
It really depends. If youre looking for a German Shepherd as a pet and companion, then personal preference should be the top criteria.
If you like how it looks, whether white, dark, or blue, then you should choose accordingly. There really is no wrong choice with color.
However, if you are considering breeding a German Shepherd or if youre interested in exhibitions, then your color selection should lean toward richer colorations that favor blacks and tans.
Unfortunately, white German Shepherds will be out of the picture, despite its aesthetic appeal. It sucks because Im a huge fan of white dogs.
Either way, coloration in a German Shepherd covers a wide range of options, and each of them are simply just colors.
No single color indicates better health, temperament, skills or anything like that. Instead, itll be up to you and how you train, treat, and raise the dog.
Posts you may like: