German Shepherd Coonhound Mix: A Complete Guide (Appearance, Temperament, and Lifespan)

Categorized as German Shepherd Types and Mixes
German shepherd and coonhound mix

If you can’t get enough of the German Shepherd’s intelligence, and won’t look away whenever you spot a Coonhound, the best way to have them both is getting a German Shepherd Coonhound Mix. This dog can easily replace your best friend and some of your family members. It is a super friendly breed, great companion, hunter, and protector.

So, what is all the buzz about this hybrid? In this guide, you will learn everything you need to know about the German Shepherd Coonhound Mix.

The German Shepherd Coonhound Mix

The German Shepherd Coonhound mix is a combination of German Shepherd and Coonhound breeds to create a brand new hybrid with all the original personality. They are a perfect combination of the parents, which means they take a lot from their parents in terms of physical appearance and temperament.

Generally, the hybrid is a medium to a large-sized dog with massive energy, just like its parents. It is also loyal, friendly, healthy, and intelligent. 

Here are some incredible traits about the German Shepherd Coonhound mix:

  • They’re super friendly and social. They like being in new places and meeting other dogs
  • They can be dominant, pushy, and rambunctious when off-leash
  • They are good-natured, easy-going, and friendly to children
  • They can stalk smaller pets at home
  • They are super smart as both parent breeds are also intelligent
  • They can be stubborn and protective of their loved ones
  • They love company
  • They explore their surroundings with their noses and mouth; that’s why they make good police dogs
  • They shed and have a houndy odor

The German Shepherd Coonhound Mix is an exciting hybrid and a distinct mix that you can’t get out of your head. While both parent breeds have some common traits, the breeds have some differences in physical characteristics, behavior, history, and appearance. That’s why it’s a good idea to study both parents to understand what we are getting from each other.

Let’s look at each parent breed separately.

German Shepherd

The German Shepherd is among the most popular dog breeds in the world. For the past 11 years, the German Shepherd has been the second most popular dog in the US and has been leading the past ten decades. Due to its intelligence, the dog learns fast and adapts to any environment quickly. It is also loyal and friendly, making it a favorite among humans. It also has a muscular physique and pointed ears. 

For thousands of years, German Shepherds were used as hunting dogs due to their incredible sense of smell. You will often find them sniffing the carpet, windows, doors, and everything they come across. This explains why they make such excellent detection and police dogs. They are also known to track lost people and drugs.


Coonhounds are known to be working dogs, just like the German Shepherd. They were bred for hunting, trapping, and tracking live game animals, which explains their physique and energy levels. However, they can be a mess when off-leash unless well-trained for hunting.

They will hunt and follow their prey everywhere, including the highway, which can be ultimately dangerous. They have a super sensitive olfactory system coupled with long ears to help waft scents to their powerful hound noses. 

They require adequate exercises to calm them down, or else they will find a way to release that excess energy. Coonhounds can be medium-sized or large and have a short easy-combing coat. They also have strong instincts and can outsmart you because they don’t follow commands blindly.

From their appearance to temperament, you will notice that the German shepherd coonhound comprises specific attributes of the hound and Shepherd. If you observe your pet closely, you will notice that it’s a mixture of both, and there is no dominance to these attributes. That means the hybrid has traits from both breeds, both good and bad, and they are random. According to research, puppies take 50 %of their mothers’ genes and 50% from their fathers.


German Shepherd Coonhound Mix can weigh somewhere between 45 and 90 lbs. German Shepherd generally weighs between 70 and 90 pounds, while Coon hounds weigh a bit lower—45 to 80 pounds. Therefore, don’t expect an excessive weight as both dogs can grow into medium or big-sized dogs.

A German shepherd can live between 10 and 14 years, while a coonhound can live between 10 and 12 years. So the average lifespan for the German Shepherd Coonhound mix will be between 10 and 14 years.

When it comes to size, the male Coonhounds stand 24 to 26 inches at the shoulder while females stand at 23 to 25 inches. On the other hand, male German Shepherd stands between 24 and 26 inches, and females stand 22 to 24 inches. That means the average male German Shepherd Coonhound mix size should stand between 24 and 26 at the shoulder while females stand at 22 to 25 inches.

Coats vary in color. Some German Shepherds are generally long-haired, while some have a double coat of medium length. The outer coat is straight, dense, and closer to the body. They also have different coat colors and patterns like white, black, black & silver, black & cream, black & gray, and black & white. Coonhounds have a tough color coat, medium length with several color combinations just like German Shepherd.

Therefore, a German Shepherd Coonhound mix can have mixed colored coats depending on the parents’ original colors. For instance, if the father, German Shepherd, had black and white and the mother, Coonhound, had a black and brown color, the German Shepherd Coonhound mix could be black colored with brown or white shades.


The German shepherd Coonhound mix will likely be friendly, motivated, and a loyal dog ready to do any task. Both parent breeds are friendly and get along well with children and other family members. The mixed-breed loves humans and quickly adapts and creates strong bonds with them in a short time.

However, they can get extremely excited and trip you over when jumping up on you, but this is usually not something to worry about because it can be eliminated during training. These dogs are also expected to be massive, energetic, and active. 

That means plenty of exercises are needed to calm them as they can quickly become unmanageable and destructive once they are hyper. You should also expect them to become territorial and protective if not well-trained or bay bark until they wake the entire neighborhood. 

Therefore, you need to train them like you would train a German Shepherd or Coonhound. Here are a few behavioral traits you would expect from a German shepherd coonhound hybrid.;

  • A curious mindset and barking at anything unfamiliar to them
  • Distractions by specific smells
  • High energy levels and territorial behaviors
  • Baying and barking at unknown people and animals
  • Food motivation and increased loyalty
  • Digging and chasing prey
  • Showing dominance around other dogs
  • Highly friendly and desire for company

Remember, a dog’s breed doesn’t always dictate how it will behave, but bonding and training do. Have reasonable expectations and be more patient with your dog. For instance, don’t compare a German Shepherd with a German Shepherd Coonhound mix. These are two different dogs and may not behave the same.

Health and Lifespan

The hybrid is a healthy and active dog. However, that doesn’t mean they don’t have health conditions to deal with. Any dog can have digestion problems, allergies, and other skin problems. 

The environment also plays a significant role in your dog’s health. For instance, the German Shepherd Coonhound mix may not have a very thick coat. That means they may not appreciate frigid environments. They also have relatively longer ears that could sweat and attract bacteria if living in very hot areas.

Additionally, this hybrid requires an extra dose of exercise to stay calm. The hybrid parents were designed to herd and hunt, both of which are high-energy draining activities. The German Shepherd is likely to develop food allergies and may show similar signs as humans. 

The canine may scratch, rub its face, and lick its paws. Other minor conditions like digestion and issues with the gut can be treated in different ways depending on the cause. 

Check whether your dog is feeding correctly, assess if original parents had genetic issues such as elbow or hip dysplasia. Take your dog to see a vet regularly to remove any doubts if you suspect you bought a sick dog. 

It is also critical to understand that just because the German Shepherd and coonhounds are at risk of hip dysplasia doesn’t mean your dog will develop these diseases. It just means they are at higher risk.

Grooming and care

The German Shepherd Coonhound mix requires proper nutrition to grow properly, exercise and play. Good nutrition makes their coat shine and improves texture. Their hard protective short coat requires minimal care. 

Both parent breeds shed, so it’s simply apparent that your hybrid will also shed. Using a grooming mitt or shedding tool with rubber nubs every two weeks can help minimize shedding. Nails should be trimmed once per month, and bathing should be done once per month to reduce the hound odor and keep the dog’s skin healthy and clean. 

If you take your dog for adventures in the forests and other places, you can bathe them once every three weeks, but keep a close eye on their ears and gently clean any wax build-up, debris or sweat.

Give high-quality dog food with appropriate servings based on age. Avoid overfeeding your hybrid as they are likely to get destructive when too full. Overfeeding also leads to overweight in the German Shepherd coonhound, especially when older.


Training should be done when your hybrid is still a puppy. They are highly intelligent as the shepherds are trained to obey commands and help make your life easier. Since they are friendly, you don’t need to struggle to get them to trust you; they can tell your intentions based on the interactions between the two of you. 

However, be careful because this hybrid doesn’t follow instructions blindly and is likely to outsmart you if you’re not careful. The Coonhound is a master when it comes to outwitting its prey. And yes, they can be stubborn too.

Exercise needs for German Shepherd Coonhound Mix

The German Shepherd Coonhound mix is created from two active and energetic breeds. This means part of their care is exercising to burn off the extra energy. If left for a long time without exercising, they can turn you and the entire home upside down. They need plenty of exercise to stay healthy, happy, and mentally active.

They may develop a stronger prey drive, especially when younger, and should never be allowed off-leash in an uncontrolled area unless adequately trained. Train them to control their desires of following any scents they detect. Instead, divert their attention by playing fetch or hide-and-seek. Two hours of active running or jumping every day are enough to keep your hybrid in tip-top condition.

Thank you for reading this article. I hope you found it helpful and useful as you raise and train your German Shepherd.

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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 - to help dog owners learn how to properly train, care for, and bond with their German Shepherd dogs.