A hybrid dog, the Shepadoodle is a cross between a German shepherd and a standard Poodle dog. A larger variety of designer dogs, they are agile, robust and alert, with beautiful muscular bodies, and boundless stamina. Active dogs, the German Shepherd Poodle mix has an average life span of about 12 to 14 years. They stand about 28 inches tall, and weigh a maximum of 80 pounds when fully mature.
A lot of the characteristics, including appearance, temperament and health, depend on the dominant parent in the cross, and the history of the parents in the cross. They German Shepherd Poodle mix may not be a 50-50 mix, as the parents in the cross may not be purebred dogs. If either of the parents is already a mix, the resultant offspring will be a much diluted mix of the German Shepherd Poodle mix. Most Shepadoodles have smooth, wavy or curly haired coats, with round heads and almond eyes. The appearance of the dog can be ascertained better with an understanding of the dominant parent in the cross. They come in a variety of colors, which include black, gray, tan, and cream.
Both the German Shepherd and the Poodle are intelligent breeds, and hence, the German Shepherd Poodle mix is also very intelligent which makes them fast learners and extremely trainable. Friendly, devoted, and affectionate, they are great with children, and even other animals. Loyal to their families, the Shepadoodle is very protective and makes wonderful companion dogs. Coupled with their protective nature, their alert and focused disposition makes them superb watchdogs. Barking and alerting their owners of threat and intrusion, the Shepadoodle needs to be familiarized with friends and regular visitors. Easy going and calm, they are suitable for homes with young children and toddlers. Very energetic and active, they may feel restrained in apartments and closed homes. They are charming, well mannered and obedient dogs. Tender and patient, they are extremely family oriented and eager to please their “pack”. They inherit a few funny instincts from their Poodle parent, and are most of the time, a happy dog.
Taking Care of a Shepadoodle:
A low maintenance dog, Shepadoodles do not need too much looking after. Regular brushing is important to keep their wavy/ curly/ straight coat tangled free and smooth; and also to remove any dead or loose hair. Brushing is also important to keep the coat clean and avoid and tick or mite infections. The German Shepherd Poodle mix dog does not carry any particular “dog” smell, and can do with an occasional bath with subtle puppy shampoo. Baths will keep their coat healthy, clean, and lustrous. Ears also need to be clean routinely to avoid ear infections. Regular health checks and routine shots must also be administered to monitor for proper growth and catch early signs of disease.
Active dogs, the Shepadoodle need regular exercise to keep them calm and fit. A long walk, jog, or games can help keep them occupied and satiated. German Shepherd Poodle mixes are prone to obesity, and exercise can help keep extra weight off.
Training is important to set the control and dominance in the dog-owner relationship. Training in the early stages is important to mould behavior to suit the family.
Shepadoodle Health Issues:
Hybrids, or mix dogs, such as the Shepadoodle, can either be immune or highly prone to the diseases their parents are prone to. This will depends on the quality of the cross, the dominant parent, and the genetic makeup of the parent and the offspring. Most common diseases that the German Shepherd Poodle mix is susceptible to are hip dysplasia, Von Willebrand’s disorder, skin problems, epilepsy, and bloating. Due to their long coats, these mix dogs are also prone to flea bites, and tick infections.
Ideal Living Conditions for a Shepadoodle:
Gentle and loving, Shepadoodles make great house pets for homes with kids too. More suitable for houses with open spaces, the German Shepherd Poodle mix may feel caged in an apartment. Regular exercise is a must to keep them from getting bored and restless. Training is important to set dominance and mould the dog’s behavior. Eager to please, a trained Shepadoodle is very obedient.