There are many protective dog breeds. Two of the most popular protective and large dogs are the German Shepherd and the Great Pyrenees also known as the Germanees. Now, if these two breeds are so amazing separately, just imagine what a mix between these two dogs would be like? What kind of dog would the Great Pyrenees German Shepherd mix really be? Intimidating surely? Or maybe scary, right? Actually, no!
It might come as a surprise to many, but the mix of these two large dogs is not intimidating or scary looking at all. They are also not aggressive or dangerous dogs. The mix is actually a sweet and loyal pup, some would call this mix a gentle giant! But, don’t be fooled, they are also fierce and protective when they need to be. And that’s important to remember.
There is so much about this designer dog that can be said, and through this article, you’ll learn more about the Great Pyrenees German Shepherd mix. Who knows, possibly you’ll realize that this mix is the perfect dog for you!
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Great Pyrenees German Shepherd mix – All about them
As it is usually with mixed breeds, we can’t tell you exactly how they will look or act. When you mix two different breeds, it’s hard to predict which traits from which parent breed they will take on. With mixed breeds, it’s so that you can’t really know how the puppies will look like. The fact is, even puppies within the same litter usually look completely different from each other.
The Shepnees can look like an equal mix of both parents, or they can look more like one or the other parent breed. That is why it is better to look at both parent breeds separately when we are talking about designer dogs. By looking at the parent breeds you will get to know each of them, in this case, the German Shepherd and the Great Pyrenees, and the traits your future puppy might inherit.
With designer dogs, it is very important that you are aware of all the traits each parent breed is bringing to the table, so there are no bad surprises after you get your puppy. Now, let us move on to the useful information on this designer dog breed that might help you make up your mind if this dog is for you or not.
What the Great Pyrenees German Shepherd Mix looks like
The Shepneese, what this mix is also called, is a large dog. Both of its parents are big dogs, so you can’t expect anything else from their puppies.
So, the German Shepherd is between 22 and 26 inches tall and weighs around 50 to 90 pounds. Females are usually much smaller than males. The Great Pyrenees is larger than the German Shepherd. They are between 25 and 32 inches tall and can weigh between 90 and 150 pounds. Based on their parents’ size, we can come to a conclusion that the Shepnees can be anywhere between 24 and 30 inches tall and weigh a minimum of 70 pounds. But be prepared for a large dog, their weight can go up to 150 pounds. It´s also common for the female Germanees to be a bit smaller than the male Germanees. But either way, you’re getting a gentle giant! This is also a long dog.
What we can tell you is that this dog will have a long muzzle and big ears. They also feature dark-brown almond-shaped eyes, as well as dark lips, noses, and eye rims. Their coat usually looks more like the German Shephers parent’s coat. Now, their coat can be long or short. There is no rule to that. Both the parents have a dense coat, also known as a double coat, so their mix will too. Because of this, they shed quite a bit, but turn into shedding monsters when they are blowing their coat once or twice a year. Dogs typically blow their coats when the seasons change. Their coat colors can be black, cream, white, or they could be a mix of all those colors.
Physical traits of a German Shepherd
Max von Stephanitz was the first person to breed the German Shepherd Dog. A large working dog breed that belongs to the herding group, they are used as police dogs, guide dogs, guard dogs, war dogs and so on. This breed was designed in Germany to guard and herd a shepherd’s flocks, and it is as intelligent as it is flexible. The German Shepherd is an excellent friend and guardian who requires an active lifestyle.
A thick coat that needs to be brushed with a pin brush or comb. To be more precise, they have a thick undercoat and a dense, somewhat wavy or straight outer coat that makes up the German Shepherd’s double coat. It has medium-length hair that is usually tan and black or red and black in hue and sheds all year. All-Black, all-White, liver, and blue are some of the more uncommon color varieties.
Male German Shepherd dogs are 24 to 26 inches tall, while females are 22 to 24 inches tall. Their weight, for males and females, varies between 75 and 95 pounds. There isn’t much difference between male and female German Shepherds. But, generally speaking, males are a bit taller and heavier than females. If you want your German Shepherd to be an outdoor dog, they can survive cold weather, but this dog actually prefers to be indoors and to be house pets. Because the German Shepherd sheds all year, it should be brushed once or twice a week to increase transition and prevent buildup.
The German Shepherd is a purebred dog and is therefore accepted by the American Kennel Club or AKC.
Physical traits of a Great Pyrenees
The Great Pyrenees is a huge, powerful dog with a double coat. The undercoat is fine, velvety, and thick, and the outside coat is long, coarse, and straight or slightly wavy. Solid white, white with faint yellow patches, tan, or gray coats are available. The eyes are dark brown, and the nose is black. The ears are trapezoidal in shape and flop to the side.
The tail is long and plumed, reaching to the dog’s hocks at the very least. He is either all white or all white with badger, tan, gray, or reddish-brown patterns. Markings can be found on the head, as a mask, on the ears, on the tail, and (rarely) on the body, but they should never cover more than one-third of the body. These dogs have either a shaded or white undercoat.
Male Great Pyrenees stand between 27 and 32 inches tall and weigh between 100 and 200 pounds. Females’ heights range from 25 to 29 inches, and their weights begin at 85 pounds. As it is with other dog breeds, males are usually larger than females, so you might want to keep that in mind when getting a Great Pyrenees puppy.
He has two dewclaws, and not just one like most dogs do. What is also unique is that the double dewclaws are actually close to each other. We want to warn you right away. Don´t even think to cut off your Great Pyrenees´s double dewclaws. They are very important because your dog utilizes them to climb. Keep the double dewclaws clipped so that they don’t get caught on fences and tear, but never cut them off completely.
Great Pyrenees German Shepherd cross – What they are like
Both the German Shepherd and the Great Pyrenees are amazing dogs. They are working dogs and highly intelligent dogs. So you can expect the same from their puppies. The Shepness is a brave dog, a dog that will protect his home and family. They will do anything to keep you safe. If you’re looking for a dog that is brave and will protect you, then they are for you!
But, keep in mind, this is a giant breed and dogs like this need a lot of training and early socialization. This means you will have to put in a lot of work to get a dog that will be protective, but not dangerous.
The German Shepherd Great Pyrenees mix dogs are alert and confident dogs, which makes them a good watchdog and a good guard dog. With them, you do not have to be scared of anything or anyone. They will let you know when someone is around and act if needed. And they don’t trust strangers. So, even if you invite someone into your home, your dog will keep an eye on them.
This designer dog has a very playful temperament and loves being active, especially outdoors, so long daily walks are a must.
But if it’s only you and them, they will be loving pups. They are excellent family dogs and are very affectionate with their family, so be prepared for a lot of cuddling! The Shepnees even think they are a lapdog, so they’ll want to sit with you on the sofa.
You should also know that these dogs can have stubborn tendencies, so don’t get surprised if your dog doesn’t want to do what you’re saying.
German Shepherd personality
The temperament of a German Shepherd is reserved, yet not hostile. They’re reticent canines who take a while to develop friends, but once they do, they’re fiercely devoted. They’re laid-back and accessible with their family, but when attacked, they can be fierce and protective, making them superb watchdogs. This is an intelligent breed and easily trained dog that flourishes on being given a task to complete—any task.
It doesn’t matter what it is, they just want a job. From signaling a deaf individual to a doorbell ring to tracking out an avalanche survivor, or finding the family cat. The German Shepherd can be trained to perform practically anything. This is why they are used as rescue dogs, police dogs, therapy dogs, police dogs, military dogs, and so on.
But, there is a bad side to these dogs. And that is being alone for lengthy periods of time. That is just something they struggle with. They get bored and dissatisfied without the human or canine interaction they desire. They also hate being alone because they can’t get the exercise and the opportunity to put their brains to use. A German Shepherd who is under-exercised and disregarded by their family is more prone to release pent-up energy in undesirable ways, like as barking and chewing. So don’t get surprised if your German Shepherd chews up your favorite shoes or furniture when you neglect him.
When they’re young, German Shepherds, like all dogs, require early socialization, this includes exposure to a variety of people, sights, sounds, and experiences. Socialization is important for your German Shepherd puppy’s development as a well-rounded dog.
Great Pyrenees personality
The Great Pyrenees has a calm, kind, and submissive nature. Shyness, aggression, and anxiousness are not normal behaviors in this breed. But obviously, you also want to offer your dog plenty of socializing opportunities while he’s a puppy. As a result of good training, you will get a well-behaved and well-rounded dog. When they’re young, the Great Pyrenees needs early socialization, which includes exposure to a variety of people, sites, noises, and activities.
Enrolling him in pup kindergarten is an excellent place to start training and socialization. Besides that, regularly inviting visitors over and taking him to crowded parks, dog parks, dog-friendly stores, and relaxing strolls to meet neighbors can all help him improve his social skills.
Socialization is important for your Great Pyrenees puppy’s development as a well-rounded dog. He is kind but serious at the same time. He’s the best companion anyone could wish for because he is brave and devoted to his people. Also doubles as a warm blanket and cuddle buddy in the night. But don’t think you’re annoying him with cuddles.
This breed actually enjoys its role as a therapy dog. He’s smart and used to work alone and figuring things out for himself, so he’s a self-starter who can be stubborn. He manages to be both a good security dog and a kind, calm, and loving companion.
Health problems and exercise requirements
The Shepnees is a very active dog, so they need an hour of exercise a day. It doesn’t have to be intense exercise, it’s just important that they get out of the house and are active. That way they will get rid of all the excess energy and stay healthy.
So, long walks, runs, hikes or just games of fetch in the park are great options. This is a large dog, so they also require a lot of space. It would be best if they could live in a big house with a large fenced yard. They get along great with kids, too, so if you have children it won’t be a problem. It’s just significant that you never let them play unattended.
Accidents can always happen. If you socialize them properly, then they shouldn’t have an issue with other pets either. The Great Pyrenees German Shepherd mix has a lifespan of between 7 and 12 years. Usually, they are healthy dogs, but they can inherit health issues their parents are susceptible to. Some of those health problems are:
- Hip Dysplasia – A hereditary disorder in which the femur of the hip joint does not fit nicely into the pelvic socket. Hip dysplasia can either manifest itself clinically or not, o n one or both back legs, some dogs experience pain and lameness, others don’t. So, there is no rule to this condition. You should keep in mind that another health problem can arise from it. Arthritis can occur as your dog ages.
- Elbow Dysplasia – Just like Hip Dysplasia, Elbow Dysplasia is a hereditary condition as well. Generally speaking, only large-breed dogs are prone to this heritable disorder. According to many experts, different growth rates of the three bones that make up the dog’s elbow are the source of joint laxity. Obviously, this is a very serious condition that can result in excruciating pain and lameness. Your veterinarian may suggest surgery to repair the condition or pain medication to alleviate the discomfort.
- Luxating Patella – When the dog patella or kneecap, which normally lies in the groove of the femur or thighbone, slips out of alignment, it is known as luxating patella. It can affect either one or both rear legs. This movement happens medially, or toward the interior of the limb, in most small breed dogs. Lateral luxation of the patella in dogs is possible, but it is uncommon and usually only occurs in larger breeds.
- Gastric Dilatation-Volvulus or Bloat – this sounds harmless but is a life-threatening condition where your dog’s stomach can twist. As mentioned, this is a life-threatening illness affecting huge, deep-chested dogs, especially if they are fed one large meal per day, eat quickly, drink loads of water afterward, and exercise frequently. When the belly is inflated with gas or air, it twists around itself. This causes bloat. The dog is unable to burp or puke to expel the extra air in its belly, which obstructs the regular flow of blood through the heart. The dog’s blood pressure falls and he goes into shock. The dog may die if medical help is not provided right away. If your dog has a swollen tummy, excessive salivation, and retching without vomiting up, it could be bloat.
Health issues of the parent breeds
The above-mentioned conditions are only a few this mix can suffer from. To get a better picture of the health issues your Great Pyrenees German Shepherd Mix can suffer from, let’s take a look at the most common health problems of each parent breed.
Most common health problems of the German Shepherd:
German Shepherds are typically healthy, but just like all breeds, they are susceptible to some health issues. Although not all German Shepherds may contract one or more of these diseases, it’s vital to be aware of them if you’re thinking about getting one.
- Thyroid issues
- Bladder Stones
- Urinary Tract Infections
- Nose Infections
- Dental Health Problems
- Hip Dysplasia
- Elbow Dysplasia
- Degenerative Disc Disease
Health problems of the Great Pyrenees:
The Great Pyrenees has an average lifespan of 10 to 12 years and is a generally healthy dog. But, just like any other breed, they can suffer from minor health problems. The most common problems this dog faces are:
- Hip Dysplasia
- Elbow Dysplasia
- Osteochondrosis Dissecans also known as OCD
- Skin problems
But, either way, it’s important to schedule regular check-ups at the vet’s office. That’s the best option for your dog to live a long and healthy life. That way, your vet can determine early on if your dog is suffering from any health condition. It’s also significant to get your puppy from good, reputable breeders. If you don’t know where to find reputable breeders, you can ask your vet if he has any recommendations for breeders that have available puppies.
Training and physical needs of the German Shepherd Great Pyrenees mix
As already mentioned, you have to train and socialize the Shepnees! So if you want a dog that is little work, then this breed isn’t for you. These dogs can even become overprotective, which leads to many behavioral issues. It’s important to let them meet as many people and unfamiliar animals as possible. They are excellent guard dogs, but only if you socialize and train them well. Otherwise, you’ll end up with a reactive dog that barks at everything and everyone.
The great thing is that the Shepnees is smart dog, so they learn quickly. No matter what you try to teach them, they’ll manage! But, it’s important that you utilize positive reinforcement as your training method. There are many other methods, but this one is foolproof because this breed thrives on praise!
But, this dog can also be a bit stubborn, so you will have to have a lot of patience, and if all else fails then think about enrolling him in an obedience training class. One tip we can give you is that, while your dog is in training, you get all family members to work with you. Training won’t be successful if one family member succumbs and lets the dog do whatever they want.
Besides training and socialization, you have to make sure your dog gets the needed nutrition. Get them a high-quality food that is rich in protein, and contains a decent amount of carbs and healthy fats. Good, high-quality food is especially important while your dog is still a puppy. A growing Germanees requires a lot of nutrients to grow healthy and strong.
Let us talk a bit about the food and nutrition of the German Shepherd Great Pyrenees mix. Now, if you were to ask us how much food your dog needs, we would have to disappoint you.
There is no right answer to how much food your German Shepherd Great Pyrenees mix should eat. The amount of calorie intake can go higher or lower depending on your dog’s activity level. But generally speaking, large dogs like the German Shepherd Great Pyrenees mix require around 1,200 to 1,500 calories a day.
You should also know that a puppy should have 3 to 5 meals a day. Two servings a day are sufficient for the adult German Shepherd Great Pyrenees mix. It is important that you don’t let your dog eat only one large meal. That is very dangerous because it can cause bloat.
Of course, you can give them treats and chewing bones occasionally, especially as a small reward for in-between meals.
Now, just like we can’t tell you how much food your dog needs, we also can’t tell you what brand of dog food your dog should eat. But we can tell you what ingredients should be in your dog’s food.
Proteins are necessary for a dog’s health, regardless of breed. Protein is essential because it is broken down into amino acids, which are subsequently used in the production and maintenance of blood cells, hormones, immunological responses, muscle repair, and other bodily functions. Basically, the two most abundant molecules in our dog’s body are protein and water.
For muscular canines like the Pitbull, a high-protein diet is essential. The amount of protein your Pitbull needs is usually determined by their level of exercise. Adult dogs may function well on a diet that contains about 30% high-quality protein. To keep muscles strong and growing in a particularly active dog, a protein intake of 50% is required.
We recommend the following sources of protein for dogs:
- Poultry – fairly lean meat
- Muscle meat – high-quality proteins but more expensive
- Intestines – packed with micronutrients and inexpensive
- Eggs – complete amino acid profile and inexpensive
- Fish – complete proteins together with high-quality fats
You can also give your dog dietary supplement protein powder, tabs, and capsules.
Carbohydrates like wheat, corn, grains, are frequently the first ingredient in low-cost dog food. This is due to the fact that carbs are substantially less expensive than protein or lipids. However, as a responsible owner, you should avoid feeding your dog high-carbohydrate dog diets.
Carbohydrate-rich foods are higher in calories but have minimal health advantages. Don’t get us wrong: all dogs require some carbohydrates in their diet; but, for the majority of canines, a net target of 20% is recommended. However, more than 40% of carbs can be found in low-cost dog food. That is simply excessive. If your dog is active, he will obviously require more carbohydrates.
- Complex carbs – quinoa, sweet potatoes, whole grains, green and leafy vegetables
- Simple carbohydrates – fruits
- Dietary fiber – vegetables.
Please don’t exclude healthy fats from your German Shepherd Great Pyrenees mix’s diet! Fats aren’t harmful to dogs, in fact, dogs require fat as a source of energy, good quality dog food contains healthy fats.
Furthermore, fatty acids benefit all dogs’ skin and coat health, as well as their brain and cognitive skills.
Recommended sources of healthy fats for dogs include:
- Omega-3 fatty acids – fish and fish oils (herring, salmon), flaxseed oil, rapeseed oil
- Omega-6 fatty acids – poultry fat, vegetable oils.