The German Shorthaired Pointer German Shepherd Mix is a relatively new hybrid dog breed that combines the intelligence and loyalty of the German Shepherd with the energetic and friendly nature of the German Shorthaired Pointer.
This mixed breed dog makes an excellent companion for active families looking for a people-oriented canine who will thrive when given plenty of exercise and activities.
|Medium to large; 45-80 lbs and 21-25 inches tall
|Short dense coat with possible shedding; Common colors tan, black, cream, white
|Energetic, loyal, intelligent, friendly, alert, eager to please
|60-90 minutes daily; needs vigorous running, hiking, swimming
|Responds very well to positive reinforcement training
|Weekly brushing; occasional bathing
|Prone to hip/elbow dysplasia, bloat, allergies, eye conditions
|Active families able to give them plenty of exercise and training
Origins of the Breed
The German Shorthaired Pointer German Shepherd Mix first started gaining popularity in the 1990s when designer dog breeds became trendy. Breeders began intentionally crossing German Shepherds with German Shorthaired Pointers to produce puppies with the best traits of both parent breeds.
The German Shepherd has a long history as a herding dog and police/military working dog known for being highly intelligent, loyal, and protective. German Shorthaired Pointers were originally bred in Germany as versatile hunting dogs prized for their athleticism, endurance, and ability to point game birds.
By combining these two purebreds, breeders aimed to develop an energetic, smart dog with an affectionate nature and strong hunting instincts – making them ideal as companions for active households.
Appearance of the GSP Shepherd Mix
Since the German Shorthaired Pointer German Shepherd Mix is a cross between two pure breeds, their appearance can vary significantly depending on which parent breed they take after.
Generally, these hybrid dogs are medium to large in size, weighing 45 to 80 pounds and standing 21 to 25 inches tall at the shoulder. They have a strong, athletic build that is suited for agility, hiking, hunting and other vigorous activities.
Their coat is short to medium length, dense, and weatherproof. Common coat colors include black, brown, tan, cream, white, and combinations of these colors. Some individuals might exhibit the classic black and tan saddle-patterned coat of a German Shepherd while others lean more towards the liver-colored ticking of the Pointer.
Facial features are often a blend of both parent breeds, with the German Shepherd’s long muzzle and erect ears mixed with the Pointer’s friendly, intelligent expression. Their eyes can be brown, hazel, or amber in color. Overall, the German Shorthaired Pointer and German Shepherd Mix has a distinctive appearance that hints at their hybrid heritage.
Temperament and Behavior
The German Shorthaired Pointer Shepherd inherits a combination of traits from its parent breeds, making for an intelligent and energetic dog that needs plenty of activity and attention from their family.
Since German Shepherds are working dogs bred to herd sheep and assist police/military, they pass on traits like intelligence, trainability, and loyalty. German Shorthaired Pointers contribute athleticism, an even temperament, and their deep affection for their people.
Properly socialized Pointer/Shepherd mixes are excellent family companions – playful, gentle, and protective towards children. Their energetic and curious nature makes them great hiking or jogging partners for active owners. They can make alert watchdogs, sounding the alarm at anything unusual while refraining from aggressive behavior unless provoked.
Without enough physical and mental exercise, these hybrids may become bored and destructive. Their intelligence means they thrive when given interesting tasks and activities that challenge their minds and bodies. Obedience training from puppyhood is highly recommended for these energetic, working dogs.
Overall, this mixed breed combines some of the best traits from both the German Shepherd and Pointer breeds. When provided with proper care, training, and outlets for activity, the German Shepherd Pointer Mix makes a loyal and fun-loving addition to active families.
Training Tips for GSP Shepherd Puppies & Dogs
The intelligence and high energy of the German Shorthaired Pointer Shepherd Mix presents both challenges and opportunities when it comes to training. Setting these hybrids up for success means starting obedience lessons early and making training a part of their daily routine.
Socialization is especially important for Pointer/Shepherd puppies to prevent shyness and help them behave appropriately in any situation. Introduce puppies gently to a wide variety of people, animals, places, noises, and experiences in their first few months.
Basic obedience commands like sit, stay, come, down, heel and no should be practiced daily in short, positive sessions. Motivate your dog with praise and treats for good behavior rather than scolding them for mistakes.
Crate training assists in housebreaking young puppies and gives them a comfortable place to settle when left alone. German Shepherd Pointer Mixes generally want to please their owners and respond well to rewards-based training methods.
Mental stimulation is just as important as physical activity for these intelligent hybrids. Food puzzle toys, scent training, agility exercises, or advanced obedience skills will help exercise their minds. Training sessions also strengthen the bond between dog and owner.
Finding activities your German Shorthaired Pointer Shepherd Mix enjoys, then training them in those skills, will provide much needed mental and physical challenges. Whether doing therapy work, hunting retrievals, or canine sports competitions, a well-trained GSP Shepherd is ready for anything.
Exercise & Activity Needs
With two high-energy sporting breeds in their heritage, the German Shorthaired Pointer Shepherd Mix requires plenty of vigorous daily activity to stay fit and satisfied. Expect to spend at least 60 to 90 minutes exercising this hybrid.
Long walks, jogs, hikes, swimming, or fetch are great ways to meet their needs for vigorous activity. They also enjoy open space to run freely, preferably in a safely fenced area, so they can really stretch their legs and burn pent-up energy.
Agility training classes provide both mental and physical challenges as dogs navigate obstacles, tunnels, ramps, and more. These hybrids often excel at dog sports like flyball, dock diving, and obedience competitions which give them a job to do while burning energy.
In addition to planned exercise sessions, be sure to provide interactive toys to keep your German Shepherd Pointer Mix entertained during downtime. Food puzzle toys, “fetch” machines, chew toys, and more will prevent boredom.
Without adequate activity, these energetic hybrids are prone to developing problem behaviors like excess barking, digging, chewing, hyperactivity, and aggression. Make exercise a priority to maintain the health, happiness, and obedience of your Pointer/Shepherd canine companion.
Thanks to their short dense coats, the grooming needs of German Shorthaired Pointer Shepherd Mixes are relatively minimal compared to some other hybrids. However, they do shed moderately year-round.
Weekly brushing with a slicker brush or hound glove will help remove dead hair and distribute skin oils. Bathing only every month or two is sufficient, using a mild shampoo formulated for dogs with shedding coats.
Trim their nails as needed, usually every few weeks for active dogs. Clean inside their floppy ears once a week with a veterinarian-approved cleanser to avoid infection and ear mites. Brush their teeth frequently for good dental health.
During seasonal shedding spikes in the spring and fall, step up brushing to daily to keep all that loose fur under control. A de-shedding tool can make quick work of removing a dog’s undercoat when they “blow” their coat.
Make grooming a positive experience with praise and treats. Handling their paws, ears, and body often from a young age will help your dog better tolerate being groomed. With just weekly brushing and minimal bathing, the low-maintenance coat of Pointer/Shepherd mixes stays looking healthy with minimal effort.
Nutrition & Feeding
The German Shorthaired Pointer Shepherd Mix is an energetic breed with high nutritional needs to fuel their active lifestyle and keep their bodies in peak condition. As a medium to large dog, they should be fed a high-quality commercial dog food formulated for active or working breeds.
These dogs reach their full adult size at around 18 months old. While growing, feed puppy food formulated for large breed dogs, which contains optimal calcium and phosphorus levels for proper bone development.
Consult your veterinarian for the ideal food and amount to feed based on your dog’s age, size, and activity level. An average adult GSP Shepherd Mix will eat 2 to 4 cups of dry kibble daily, divided into two meals.
Avoid overfeeding, which can lead to obesity and joint problems. Keep your dog fit and trim by measuring out their food and avoiding unhealthy table scraps and treats. Provide challenging exercise and mental stimulation rather than excess food to satisfy their needs.
With their deep chests, Pointer/Shepherd mixes can be prone to bloat, a life-threatening stomach condition. To reduce risks, don’t allow them to exercise vigorously before or after eating. Slow feeder bowls also help prevent them wolfing down food too quickly.
These athletic hybrids do well on high-protein commercial diets with meat as the first ingredient. Look for food containing glucosamine, fish oil, and other supplements to support their joints. Keep water freely available to stay hydrated.
Hybrid vigor means most German Shorthaired Pointer Shepherd Mixes enjoy good health, especially when purchased from reputable breeders who health screen their breeding dogs. However, like all breeds, they can be prone to certain health conditions.
Hip and Elbow Dysplasia – Malformation of these joints is unfortunately common in larger dogs. Have your vet check for signs of arthritis as your dog ages. Maintain a lean body weight and avoid over-exercising young dogs while their joints are still developing.
Bloat – Their deep, narrow chests put them at risk for this potentially fatal twisting of the stomach. Preventative measures include slow feeding, resting after eating, and avoiding vigorous exercise around mealtimes.
Allergies – Both parent breeds can pass on allergy tendencies. Symptoms like itchy skin, ear infections, and foot licking indicate food or environmental allergies that can be managed with medication and dietary changes.
Eye Conditions – Inherited eye diseases like cataracts, progressive retinal atrophy, and corneal dystrophy sometimes occur. Have a veterinary ophthalmologist evaluate your dog’s eyes annually.
Degenerative Myelopathy – Seen in older German Shepherds, this debilitating spinal cord disorder causes progressive hind limb paralysis. DNA screening can identify carriers.
With early health screening, a balanced diet, plenty of exercise, and routine veterinary care, the German Shorthaired Pointer Shepherd Mix typically enjoys a lifespan of 10 to 14 years. They’re resilient dogs capable of keeping up with active owners for years.
Finding a German Shorthaired Pointer Shepherd Puppy
The German Shorthaired Pointer German Shepherd Mix has grown in popularity in recent decades as more people discover their winning combination of loyalty, intelligence, and energetic spirit. However, they can still be challenging to find.
Pet stores and disreputable online sellers should be avoided, as they often source dogs from irresponsible breeders. The ideal way to get one of these hybrid puppies is directly from a responsible breeder who carefully screens breeding dogs for health issues and good temperaments.
Expect to be put on a waitlist, as reputable breeders only produce a few litters per year. Patience is rewarded by getting a happy, healthy puppy who was raised in a nurturing environment.
Costs range around $800 to $1,200 for a German Shorthaired Pointer German Shepherd Mix puppy from health-tested parents. Be wary of prices that seem too low or too high compared to this range.
Ask to meet the pup’s parents to evaluate their personalities and see proof of health clearances. Responsible breeders will welcome questions as they want their puppies going to informed, prepared homes.
Adopting an adult German Shorthaired Pointer Shepherd Mix is also an option. Check local shelters and breed-specific rescues for dogs needing new forever homes.
Is the GSP Shepherd Right for You?
The intelligent, energetic German Shorthaired Pointer Shepherd Mix needs an active owner able to provide plenty of exercise, training, companionship, and outlets for their high drive. First-time or sedentary dog owners may find this hybrid to be too much dog.
Homes with fenced yards are ideal, as this breed needs daily vigorous running and play. Their strong prey drive makes them better suited for homes without small pets. Positive training and proper socialization makes them great family dogs despite their size.
If provided everything they need to thrive, the loyal German Shorthaired Pointer Shepherd Mix will become both a fun companion and devoted protector. Their winning personality and handsome good looks explain the rising popularity of this ideal hybrid breed.