You want a dog that’s intelligent, friendly, and loyal. One that will keep you active and alert, yet gentle and loving with your family. Look no further than the German Shepherd Bloodhound mix! This relatively new hybrid combines the best traits of two popular breeds, resulting in an ideal family companion.
In this comprehensive guide, we’ll cover everything you need to know about the German Shepherd Bloodhound mix. You’ll learn about their history, temperament, care needs, health issues, and more. Let’s explore why this mix might be your perfect canine match!
History and Origin
The German Shepherd Bloodhound mix is a designer dog breed, meaning it was intentionally crossed between two purebreds. In this case, the German Shepherd and the Bloodhound.
German Shepherds originated as herding dogs in Germany in the late 1800s. Valued for their intelligence, trainability and protective nature, German Shepherds rose to popularity after World War I and have been a beloved companion breed ever since.
Bloodhounds have a much longer history, dating back to medieval times in Europe. Their incredible sense of smell and tracking abilities made them ideal hunting companions. Bloodhounds are still used today for search and rescue work.
While the exact origins of the German Shepherd Bloodhound mix are unknown, it’s likely breeders wanted to combine the intelligence and trainability of the German Shepherd with the exceptional scenting skills of the Bloodhound.
This hybrid first started appearing in the 1990s or early 2000s, though they are still relatively uncommon. Like many designer breeds, they don’t have standardized breed characteristics yet.
German Shepherd Bloodhound Mix Appearance
As a newer crossbreed, German Shepherd Bloodhound mixes can vary quite a bit in appearance. Typically they will be a medium to large-sized dog, weighing 50-110 lbs and standing 22-27 inches tall at the shoulder.
Their coat can come in a variety of colors and markings including black, brown, tan, liver, silver, white or red. The fur is usually medium length, dense and shedding. The Bloodhound influence likely adds some wrinkles around the face and neck.
Other distinctive features include:
- Floppy, droopy ears like the Bloodhound
- Darker face mask like the German Shepherd
- Long muzzle and expressive eyes
- Sturdy, athletic body type
Overall, these hybrids tend to be well-proportioned, powerful dogs. Their look can lean more towards one parent breed or the other, but generally they embody traits of both.
Temperament and Personality
One of the biggest perks of the German Shepherd Bloodhound mix is their wonderful temperament. They tend to be extremely friendly, loving and gentle dogs.
From the German Shepherd side, they gain loyalty and eagerness to please their owners. They form very strong bonds with their human families. German Shepherds were bred to herd and protect, so mixes will display some natural guarding instincts around the home.
The Bloodhound influence lends a laidback, patient and gentle disposition. While German Shepherds can often be aloof with strangers, Bloodhound mixes are more politely reserved.
These hybrids are highly intelligent, making them easy to train. Their energetic nature means they need plenty of daily activity and mental stimulation. With proper exercise and training, these dogs make wonderful companions.
Some key personality traits include:
- Affectionate and loving
- Eager to please owners
- Loyal and protective
- Intelligent and trainable
- Active and energetic
- Kid and pet-friendly
These well-rounded temperaments allow German Shepherd Bloodhound mixes to thrive in a variety of households, including those with children or other pets.
Exercise and Activity Needs
German Shepherd Bloodhound mixes are an active breed that needs plenty of daily exercise. Long walks, jogs, hikes and vigorous play sessions are best to keep them fit and stimulated.
Plan to provide at least 60-90 minutes of exercise per day. These high-energy dogs won’t do well confined in an apartment all day. They thrive in homes with large, fenced yards where they can burn off steam.
Mental stimulation is also important for these intelligent dogs. Interactive toys, scent work, obedience training and other engaging activities will help prevent boredom and unwanted behaviors.
Potential owners should be prepared to make an active lifestyle commitment before bringing home one of these energetic hybrids. They are not suited to mostly sedentary owners. But for active individuals and families, they make enthusiastic workout partners!
Training Tips for German Shepherd Bloodhound Mixes
Thanks to their eagerness to please and high intellect, German Shepherd Bloodhound mixes are moderately easy to train.
Positive reinforcement training is highly recommended, using praise and food rewards to motivate your dog. Harsh methods are not needed for these sensitive pups.
Early socialization and obedience training is advised to set clear expectations for behavior. Expose your dog to a wide variety of people, places and stimuli in a controlled, positive manner during puppyhood.
Potential areas to work on include:
- Basic commands – Sit, stay, come, down, heel. Use reward-based methods.
- Leash manners – These dogs can be prone to pulling without proper leash training.
- Guarding behavior – Teach appropriate barking and when to alert you.
- Prey drive – Use distraction techniques to teach them to ignore chasing.
- Scent tracking – Channel their natural tracking abilities into a structured job.
Seeking professional training assistance is often beneficial for first-time dog owners. These hybrids respond very well to instruction when done properly.
Consistency, patience and staying positive are keys to success with this highly trainable mix!
German Shepherd Bloodhound mixes have moderate grooming needs. Their medium-length double coat sheds year-round, more heavily during seasonal changes.
Plan to brush them 2-3 times per week to control loose hair and prevent matting. Using an undercoat rake can help remove shedding fur.
Bathing can be done every 4-8 weeks as needed using a moisturizing dog shampoo. Take care not to overbathe, as this can dry out their skin.
Here are some other grooming tips:
- Nails should be trimmed every 2-3 weeks to avoid cracking or overgrowth.
- Teeth require regular brushing 2-3 times per week.
- Ears need weekly checking and cleaning to prevent infections.
- Wrinkles may need occasional cleaning to prevent skin fold dermatitis.
Most owners find it easiest to maintain a regular weekly grooming routine. Book professional grooming appointments every 6-8 weeks for deeper cleansing and haircut trim.
Nutrition and Feeding
All dogs have unique nutritional needs based on their size, age and activity level. As a medium-large breed, German Shepherd Bloodhound mixes need a high-quality diet formulated for their size.
- Puppies – 3-4 small meals per day. About 1.5 cups total per day.
- Adult – 2 meals per day. Around 4-5 cups total daily.
Choose a premium large breed dry dog food and follow label portions. Feed your adult dog the higher amount if very active. Provide unlimited fresh water.
Monitor your dog’s weight, adjusting food as needed. Don’t allow them to become overweight, which can exacerbate joint problems. Discuss an optimal diet with your vet.
Like all breeds, German Shepherd Bloodhound mixes may be prone to certain health conditions. Being aware of them allows you to provide preventative care and catch problems early on.
Potential health issues include:
- Hip and elbow dysplasia
- Ear infections
- Skin problems
Lifespan for this hybrid is 10-14 years with proper care. Schedule annual vet checkups, vaccinations, and preventatives. Keep their weight in check and nutrition optimal.
With diligent owner attention, many dogs enjoy excellent health their entire lives. Genetic screening of parent dogs can also reduce risk of inherited conditions.
Finding a German Shepherd Bloodhound Mix Puppy
Now that you know all about this exceptional hybrid, you may be wondering where to find German Shepherd Bloodhound mix puppies available for adoption or purchase.
Since they are a relatively uncommon designer breed, you may need patience locating litters. Here are some options:
- Rescue adoption – Check local and breed-specific rescues for adoptable mixes. Adoption fees are usually under $500.
- Shelters – Animal shelters sometimes take in Shepherd/Bloodhound mix strays.
- Breeder – Research reputable breeders specializing in this hybrid. Expect prices starting around $800+.
- Classified ads – Sites like Craigslist sometimes have accidental litters for lower prices. Use caution to avoid puppy mills.
When going through a breeder or adoption, be sure to ask about health testing on the parents, vaccinations, deworming and other veterinary care for the puppies.
Raising your German Shepherd Bloodhound mix from a pup will allow important socialization and training during their impressionable early weeks. This sets them up for success as a friendly, well-adjusted family companion.
Is a German Shepherd Bloodhound Mix Right for You?
Before deciding if a German Shepherd Bloodhound is the best dog for you, be sure you can meet their needs. This hybrid is:
- Affectionate and loyal
- Highly energetic and active
- Eager to please and highly trainable
- Intelligent and needs mental stimulation
- Moderate grooming requirements
- Prone to some health problems
These dogs thrive with active owners and families who have time to exercise, train and play with them daily. First-time owners should be committed to professional training assistance.
With their wonderful temperaments and family-friendly natures, German Shepherd Bloodhound mixes can be exceptional companions! They will be your loyal adventure buddy and loving family guardian.
Frequently Asked Questions
Still have some questions about the German Shepherd Bloodhound mix? Here are answers to some common queries:
How big do German Shepherd Bloodhound mixes get?
They typically reach 22-27 inches tall and 50-110 pounds. Males tend to be on the larger end of the range.
Do German Shepherd Bloodhound mixes bark a lot?
They can be vocal dogs, barking to alert their owners. Proper training is important to control excessive barking. Their guarding instincts mean they may bark at strangers or strange noises.
Is a German Shepherd Bloodhound mix a good family dog?
Yes, their affectionate, gentle temperament makes them wonderful family companions. They get along great with children and thrive when included in family activities.
Are German Shepherd Bloodhound mixes easy to train?
Yes, this hybrid tends to be very intelligent and eager to please. They respond very well to positive reinforcement training methods. Some stubbornness is possible, requiring patience.
How much exercise does a German Shepherd Bloodhound mix need?
They are very energetic and need 60-90+ minutes of exercise daily including walks, playtime, training and interactive toys. A securely fenced yard is ideal.
What health problems do German Shepherd Bloodhound mixes have?
Potential issues to be aware of include hip/elbow dysplasia, arthritis, allergies, bloat, ear infections and some skin problems. Lifespan averages 10-14 years.
Do German Shepherd Bloodhound mixes shed a lot?
Yes, their medium-long double coat sheds regularly year-round. Daily brushing and frequent vacuuming are advised for households with these dogs.
The Perfect Companion
After learning all about the friendly, intelligent German Shepherd Bloodhound mix, you can see why they make such exceptional family dogs. Their hybrid vigor gives them an outstanding temperament perfect for active households.
This relatively rare crossbreed combines the best qualities of two popular breeds into one loveable package. They’ll be your loyal companion at home or on outdoor adventures.
If you can provide the proper exercise, training and care this breed needs to thrive, a German Shepherd Bloodhound mix may be your perfect canine match. Their playful spirit and affectionate nature will quickly win over your heart!