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German Shepherd Dachshund Mix: Breed Information

Emma Braby

Last Updated: March 31, 2020 | 10 min read

German Shepherd Dachshund Mix

The German Shepherd Dachshund mixed pooch, also known as the Dachshund Shepherd, is a somewhat surprising designer dog, but one that works seemingly well. His German parents are very different in terms of both temperament and appearance, trainability and energy, but it is their differences that blend together to create a well-balanced dog that is suited to many families.

His size is a unique mix of two breeds, with the Dachshund being the smaller version and the GSD being a medium to large sized breed.  Typically this mix will fall somewhere in the middle when it comes to size, temperament and activity level.  As always, any mixed breed can have tendencies that lean more towards one parent breed than the other.

Whilst he is suited to many, before you invite one of these curious crosses into your life you need to make sure that he is the one for you, which is why we have created our comprehensive to give you the low down on this beautiful mix.

Parent Breeds

The Dachshund Shepherd is a new canine concoction, and as such they can be wildly different in terms of looks and personality, even within the same litter, so it is very important to learn about both of his parents because you may find your pup is an equal split or more like one than the other.

German Shepherd

This guy is most recognizable for working alongside the military and police forces across the world, and it is his employment that has given him his formidable reputation. However, for those who know this pooch, know that he is a sweet boy at heart and loves to retire back to the warmth of his family home after a long day at work.

The German Shepherd is a popular dog in America, and in 2019 the American Kennel Club (AKC) have ranked him as the 2nd most popular dog breed out of 191 breeds, and he is well-loved for a whole bunch of reasons. He is described as confident, courageous and smart, and he is one of the most loyal and trainable dogs on the planet.  The GSD is a popular mix with other smaller breeds, like the beagle shepherd mix, or the Shollie.

Dachshund

Despite his reputation for being a well-deserved spoilt lapdog, this little long guy is a well accomplished hunting dog. His name translates to badger dog, and with his tenacious personality, high prey drive, long body and big paddle paws he is very good at what he does. Although he is now more commonly found on the lap of his master, he has retained his hunting instinct and will chase animals through the park if he catches a scent.

The Dachshund is also a popular family pet, and he currently ranks as the 12th most popular breed in America. He is described as friendly, curious and spunky, and despite his low stature he has a bold and vivacious personality that has won hearts across the world. He is cheeky and knows what he wants, and his master certainly knows it too! Often described as the king of the canine world, he has held the record for the oldest dog twice, with one reaching the grand old age of 21 and another 20.  While the Dachshund Shepherd is a newere and unique mix, there are other popular Dachshund mixes already out there, which include the Chiweenie or the Dachsador.

The Dachshund Shepherd

Dachshund Shepherd
The Dachshund Shepherd can be a wide variety of colors and sizes depending on the parents.

Whilst his parents are two of the most recognizable German breeds, it is believed that the origins of the Dachshund Shepherd mix lie in America, similar to most newer designer dogs. Given that he is so new, it is important to expect a combination of any characteristics from either parent.

Temperament

This mixed pooch is likely to be very loyal, with an adoration for this master. Whilst this sociability will extend to his entire family, he will have a soft spot for the one who he considers to be his main caregiver. With this comes with the propensity to become overprotective, and he may snap and nip to stop people coming to close to his master, so for this reason he needs to be socialized from an early age to avoid this.

It is likely that he will be very sociable, but he might be aloof with strangers at first, but thanks to his Dachshund personality he will warm up to them after a while.

The Dachshund Shepherd will be full of spunky energy and will keep you entertained for hours on end. He will have a lot of pent up energy that he will need to expel, otherwise he will become quite destructive and damage everything in his path, so be sure to provide him with his recommended exercise and spend as much time as you can with him, because he doesn’t like to be left alone for too long.

He makes a wonderful family pet for most, but being quite intense he is not suited to all as he requires a lot of physical and mental stimulation to keep him healthy.

Size & Appearance

This guy will vary quite wildly in appearance, and he will weigh anywhere between 20 to 60 pounds in weight, and he will measure anywhere between 10 to 20 inches. His size will also depend on whether his Dachshund parent is the miniature or standard size, so be sure to ask your breeder which size his parents are.

He may or may not inherit the shorter legs and turned out feet of the Dachshund, but he will certainly not be as tall as the German Shepherd. He will inherit large triangle ears of both parents, however it is not known if they will be floppy or erect, or maybe one of each! He will have big dark round eyes and a square fleshy nose, and overall he is a very handsome looking chap, albeit a curious one who have passersby asking you what he is.

Coat & Colors

Dachshund Shepherd Long Coat
Some German Shepherd Dachshund Mixes can have longer hair versus a shorter coat, depending on the parent genes.

This is entirely dependent on his parents, as the Dachshund has three types of coat, smooth, wirehaired and longhaired, and the German Shepherd has two types of coat, a medium and long haired coat, so this offers a wide and unique set of colors and textures to choose from.  Whichever coat he inherits, he will have a double coat that will shed moderately throughout the year, and heavily during shedding seasons, so if you aren’t a fan of canine hair on your clothes or furniture then this mix might not be for you.

Both of his parents have a long list of colors to choose from, but their most common colors are dark browns, blue coats and black coats, with the typical German Shepherd dark facial mask. There is also the chance of inheriting other colors such as solid white, blue, red, or even merle, and his patterns are sporadic with brindle or piebald, but the more unique his colorings are the more you can expect to pay for him as this quirky appearance is currently all the rage.

Exercise & Living Conditions

It is likely that the Dachshund Shepherd will need to be exercised between 30 and 60 minutes every day, dependent on his size and energy levels, but you will soon be able to tell if he has had enough walkies because he will stop dead in his tracks and expect you to carry him thanks to his Dachshunds spoilt genes. However much you exercise him, he will still need to be mentally stimulated throughout the day because of his intelligence and curiosity, so expect to play a lot of interactive games with him.

Again, his living conditions are entirely dependent on his parents’ size, because if he is a tiny pooch he could easily adapt to an apartment, just as long as his exercise needs were met. If, however, he finds himself on the larger side, then he would be better suited to a home with access to a backyard.

If he is socialized well then he may be able to live with other household pets, however, be sure to introduce him to them slowly and in a controlled environment, as his ancestors hunting genes might come into play. He should do well with children, but again, be sure to supervise him just as you would with any dog.

Training

It is likely that the Dachshund Shepherd will be very trainable thanks to his German Shepherd parent’s trainability, although you might find he has an ‘off-day’ where he would rather be sprawled across the sofa doing absolutely nothing no matter how much you entice him to partake in a training session. With plenty of positive reward-based training in the form of verbal praise and treats, he should do well.

Whichever parent he takes after more you should begin his training sessions as soon as you welcome him home and discourage any over-protective traits that he might display. It is also important to socialize him early from a young age with as many humans and other animals as possible so that he doesn’t feel the need to protect his family. He will also inherit a high prey drive, so you shouldn’t let this little guy off-leash in a public place, because you might not get him back!

Health

The Dachshund Shepherd is a relatively healthy dog who will live between 7 and 14 years, or maybe a bit longer if he is related to the oldest Dachshunds on record. The following health issues are the main concerns that your mixed pup might face, but remember that this is not exhaustive so be sure to keep up with his regular Veterinary checks:

Hip and Elbow Dysplasia – the German Shepherd parent is at high risk of this, and it is caused by an abnormal formation of the hip and elbow joints, which lead to grinding of the bones and cartilage, which will eventually cause painful arthritis and mobility issues. In addition to this, Luxating Patella, which is essentially a dislocated kneecap, also affects the Dachshund parent, so this is another mobility issue to be aware of.

Intervertebral Disc Disease – this affects short and long dogs like the Dachshund, and it is caused by the eruption of the cushioning discs in the spine, which can lead to severe pain and paralysis. If he takes on the longer body shape of the Dachshund, then he is more likely to experience this.

Eye conditions – both of his parents are at risk of suffering from a variety of eye conditions such as Progressive Retinal Atrophy and Cataracts, and all reputable breeders should screen his parents for these.

Mitral Valve Disease – this is where his heart valves weaken and blood flows back into the atrium, and this can eventually lead to cardiac failure. This is more common in Dachshunds, but it can be identified early by Veterinarians, so it is important to keep up with his regular checks.

Nutrition

Dachshund Shepherd Eating a Bone
Nutrition and food consumption should be monitored, as this breed can tend to gain weight as they age.

The Dachshund Shepherd will eat anywhere between 1 ½ and 2 ½ cups of food every day, but of course, this will be entirely dependent on his weight and energy levels, so it is advised to follow the food instructions or speak to your Veterinarian for tailored advice. He would do well on a high-quality kibble, with plenty of protein, fiber, vitamins, and minerals to meet his needs.

It is important, given his potential mobility and spinal health concerns, that you maintain a healthy weight for your Dachshund Shepherd, other wise his health could go downhill a lot faster than it would at a normal weight. Whilst he might thank you for those extra treats, his body won’t so be sure not to overdo it.

Grooming

Again, this will depend on his coat type, and if he has a short and shiny coat then little grooming will be required, but if he has a long and wiry coat then he will need grooming every day to ensure that his coat does not become matted. Because he has a double coat, he will need to be brushed almost daily during the shedding season whatever his coat type.

Dental cleaning will be required, particularly if he has a smaller mouth similar to the Dachshund, as he will be more prone to periodontal diseases, and if he has drop-down ears then weekly ear cleaning will also be required to keep bacteria and infections at bay.

Puppies

It is not clear as to how much these guys cost exactly as he is a relatively new and rare mixed pooch, but it is estimated that he will cost between $400 and $900. Of course, the mother will be the German Shepherd and the Dachshund will be the father, as it would be dangerous for the Dachshund to carry a puppy of a much bigger size.

As Family Pets

  • The Dachshund Shepherd adores their family, and may be reserved with strangers.
  • He will still like to lay on your lap in the afternoon, but he is not a typical lapdo.
  • This breed is typically full of energy and requires at least 30 to 60 minutes of exercise every day.
  • The Dachshund Shepherd needs to be around people, and shouldn’t be left alone for long periods.
  • This breed can become protective, so early socialization is key.
  • Dependent on his coat he will require either minimal grooming or daily brushing.
  • The Dachshund Shepherd’s food consumption needs to be monitored (they are prone to overeating).
  • He is suited to families with younger children with supervision, and potentially other household pets.
  • He needs to be stimulated with interactive games, training sessions, and brain games.

Finding a Breeder

Start your search online and speak to breeders who breed solely German Shepherds and Dachshunds, but being a rarer pup you should be prepared to travel much further for him compared to a standard German Shepherd or Dachshund. Once you find a breeder, or several, meet them in person and ask to see their pups and the parents, and get a feel for them.

Steer clear of puppy mills and unreputable breeders because they do not have the pups best interests in mind, and this is particularly important for an unusual mixed breed with completely different parents.  Backyard breeders are becoming more and more prevalent, so it’s important to make sure you minimize the risks when adopting a pup.

Rescues & Shelters

Finding a Dachshund Shepherd in a rescue shelter is going to be tricky, simply because he is very rare, but because many people buy one of these guys hoping that they are going to a traditional lapdog who doesn’t require much exercise or training they become overwhelmed, and for this reason there are still a few of these curious canines dotted around the place.

Visit your local rescue centers and speak to the staff, and be sure to check out dedicated breed shelters that can be found on the German Shepherd Rescue Association website, and the Dachshund Rescue website. Whilst it may take longer, it will be worth it when you find him!

Final Thoughts

Whilst he might be one of the least expected mixes, he would be perfect for a family who can spend most of their day with him and exercise him adequately. In return they would get a loyal, affectionate, protective and well-balanced pup, and one who is not as stubborn and small as the Dachshund, and one who is not as large or intense as the German Shepherd. As long as you train him and socialize him well, he is a delightful pooch that is very unique!

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