The Foxhound German Shepherd Mix: An Affectionate and Active Hybrid Dog

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The Foxhound German Shepherd mix is a cross between two popular working dog breeds – the German Shepherd and the Foxhound. This hybrid dog combines the intelligence and loyalty of the German Shepherd with the speed, energy and hunting instincts of the Foxhound.

Also known as the German Foxhound or Foxy Shepherd, this mixed breed dog makes an excellent family pet. They are known for being affectionate, gentle and good with children. But they also need plenty of exercise and mental stimulation to stay happy and healthy.

Here is a helpful table summarizing key information about the Foxhound German Shepherd mix:

Foxhound German Shepherd Mix
SizeMedium to Large, 50-90 lbs
CoatDense and thick double coat with medium length fur
ColorTan, black, cream, reddish-brown, black and tan, white markings
Lifespan10-14 years
TemperamentIntelligent, energetic, loyal, devoted, protective, playful
Exercise60+ minutes daily
TrainingResponsive, benefits from reward-based training
GroomingModerate – heavy seasonal shedding, weekly brushing recommended
Good with other petsCan do well with socialization, supervision recommended due to high prey drive
Good with childrenYes, with early socialization. Better with older children
Apartment livingLow – requires a yard, prone to barking
Best homeLow – requires a yard, prone to barking

Origins of the Foxhound German Shepherd Mix

As a relatively new mixed breed, the exact origins of the Foxhound German Shepherd hybrid are unclear.

The German Shepherd originated as a herding dog in Germany in the late 1800s. They were later developed into versatile working dogs used by the military and police. Known for their intelligence, trainability and protective nature, German Shepherds remain one of the most popular breeds today.

Foxhounds have a much longer history dating back to the 1500s. They were originally bred in England as hunting dogs to chase foxes by scent. Their stamina, keen sense of smell and speed made them excel at this job. There are several Foxhound breeds but most types are high energy with a strong prey drive.

By mixing the intelligent German Shepherd with the energetic Foxhound, breeders likely aimed to create an active dog with strong scenting abilities. The Foxhound German Shepherd cross first appeared in the United States in the 1980s and has grown in popularity since.

Appearance of Foxhound German Shepherd Mixes

As a crossbreed, Foxhound German Shepherd mixes can vary significantly in appearance as they can inherit physical traits from either parent breed.

They tend to be medium to large-sized dogs, ranging from 50 to 90 pounds and standing 20 to 26 inches tall at the shoulder. Their coat is usually thick and dense, with medium length fur. Coat colors include tan, black, cream, reddish-brown and black & tan. White markings are also common.

These hybrids typically have the triangular ears of a German Shepherd along with a long, narrow snout. They have an athletic, muscular build similar to both parent breeds. Overall their look can closely resemble that of a German Shepherd, Foxhound or a blend of both breeds.

Temperament and Personality

Foxhound German Shepherd mixes tend to have an affectionate, loyal and active temperament.

From the German Shepherd side, they often inherit intelligence, trainability and a strong protective instinct. Their Foxhound lineage contributes greater energy, curiosity and intensity.

Well-socialized Foxy Shepherds are typically friendly and gentle dogs. They form close bonds with their family and crave lots of attention and togetherness. This mix enjoys having a job to do and responding well to obedience training.

With proper training and socialization, these hybrids get along well with children and other pets. Their energetic and playful nature makes them a great family companion. However, their size and energy level may be too much for very young kids.

Foxhound German Shepherd mixes thrive when they have plenty of activity and exercise. Long walks, hiking, running and playing fetch are great outlets for their high energy. They also need substantial mental stimulation to prevent boredom and destructive behavior.

As hunting dogs by nature, it’s important to provide a safe outlet for their strong prey drive through interactive play and toys. A securely fenced yard is a must for this mix. With their protective tendencies, early socialization is key to prevent any wariness of strangers.

Taking Care of a Foxhound German Shepherd Mix

Caring for a Foxhound German Shepherd cross requires providing for their significant needs for exercise, mental engagement and togetherness.

Exercise Needs

This energetic hybrid thrives with at least 60-90 minutes of vigorous exercise daily. Long walks, jogging, hiking and swimming are great activities. Games of fetch and frisbee provide both physical and mental stimulation. Off-leash running in a safe area also helps meet their exercise requirements.

Without sufficient activity, these dogs are prone to nuisance behaviors like barking, digging and chewing. Make sure to meet their needs even on bad weather days with indoor play, training sessions and puzzle toys.

Grooming and Shedding

The Foxhound German Shepherd mix has a moderate to high-maintenance coat. Expect heavy seasonal shedding that requires weekly brushing year-round. Bathing only when needed reduces the coat’s natural oils.

Trim nails monthly, clean ears regularly and brush teeth often for good health. Some owners opt to shave the coat for lower maintenance but this can damage it. Most will benefit from professional grooming every 6-8 weeks.

Training Tips

This hybrid is highly intelligent and eager to please, making them very trainable dogs. Use positive reinforcement training and be patient but firm during obedience work.

Early socialization and puppy classes lay the groundwork for a well-adjusted adult dog. Continuing training classes and canine sports provide helpful mental and physical stimulation. Potential areas to train in include agility, tracking, obedience and more.

Crate training assists in housebreaking and prevents destructive chewing issues. A Foxhound German Shepherd mix may inherit some tendency to bark and howl, which can be controlled with training.

Diet and Nutrition

A high-quality dry dog food formulated for large active breeds is best. Feed about 3-4 cups divided into two meals per day. Monitor weight and adjust portions as needed.

These dogs have deep chests so they are prone to bloat. Use a slow feed bowl and avoid exercise immediately after eating. Also provide plenty of fresh water.

Health Issues

Foxhound German Shepherd mixes generally have good health and life expectancy of 10-14 years. As a crossbreed, they tend to be hardier than purebreds.

Potential issues to watch for include hip and elbow dysplasia, allergies, bloat and ear infections. Eye problems like cataracts and progressive retinal atrophy also occur sometimes.

Finding a Foxhound German Shepherd Mix Puppy

There are few breeders specializing in Foxy Shepherd puppies. Adopting from a rescue group is often the best option. Be sure to see health clearances for the parents when possible.

Expect to pay $500 to over $1000 for a Foxhound German Shepherd mix puppy from a breeder. Adopted adults and puppies are less, typically between $50 to $400.

Be patient and work with shelters, rescues and breeders to find the right match. When bringing home your new puppy or dog, schedule a vet visit within a few days.

Frequently Asked Questions about Foxhound German Shepherd Mixes

Here are answers to some common questions about this unique hybrid dog breed.

Are Foxhound German Shepherd mixes good family dogs?

Yes, when properly trained and socialized, this mix makes a wonderful family pet. They are playful, energetic and affectionate. Their loyalty and intelligence allows them to form close bonds. Early socialization can minimize any wariness around small children.

Do Foxhound Shepherd mixes bark a lot?

They can be prone to barking and howling, particularly when bored or lonely. Sufficient exercise, training, entertainment and companionship can greatly minimize excessive vocalization. Their hunting dog instincts also contribute more tendency to bark.

Is a Foxhound cross good for apartment living?

These high-energy dogs are better suited for homes with fenced yards where they can burn off steam. Apartment living is possible but will require extensive daily walks and playtime to meet exercise needs. Their tendency to bark may also pose challenges.

What is the best home for this breed?

An active family or individual that can provide 60+ minutes of vigorous daily exercise and substantial interaction is ideal. A fenced yard provides safety for off-leash play. The dog should be securely confined when alone. Homes with older children are generally recommended.

Do Foxy Shepherds do well with other pets?

Early socialization allows them to befriend other dogs and household pets. Supervision is still advised due to their high prey drive. Their herding background may cause them to nip at heels of other animals if not redirected. But they can do well in multi-pet homes with proper training.

Are Foxhound German Shepherd mixes easy to train?

Yes, this hybrid tends to be highly intelligent and eager to please. They are responsive to reward-based training with consistency and patience. Attending obedience classes is recommended. Their high energy makes mental stimulation and activity important too.

Conclusion

The Foxhound German Shepherd mix brings together the best traits of two popular working breeds. They make a devoted and lively canine companion for active owners.

With proper care, training and outlets for their energy, the Foxy Shepherd can be an ideal family dog. Their spirit and loyalty creates an unbreakable bond with their human pack.

By Andrew Garf

Andrew Garf has loved dogs, especially German Shepherds, since he was 10 years old. Though he also loves burgers, training dogs is his real passion. That's why he created the website TrainYourGSD.com - to help dog owners learn how to properly train, care for, and bond with their German Shepherd dogs.