German Shepherd Dachshund Mix: Breed Guide

Many describe the German Shepherd Dachshund mix as an engaging blend of contrasts – robust yet petite, energetic yet calm, playful yet keenly observant. Their appetite for learning and an eagerness to please make them fun-loving companions and diligent protectors.

Whether you’re an experienced dog owner, a beginner, or searching for a family pet, it’s worth considering the Dachshund German Shepherd mix. This unusual combination just might be the perfect choice for those looking for something a little different yet infused with all the finest attributes of two well-loved, iconic breeds.

History of the German Shepherd Dachshund Mix

Due to their recent popularity, the history of mixed breeds, often known as designer dogs, is a much-debated topic. Even so, tracing the established ancestry of these two pure breeds gives us a compelling insight into the origins and evolution of the German Shepherd Dachshund mix.

A Glimpse into the Past of the German Shepherd

German Shepherd

The German Shepherd, as the name suggests, originally hails from Germany. A breed with a rich history dating back to 1899, German Shepherds were initially bred for work, primarily to herd sheep and offer protection against predators. Their outstanding intelligence, strength, and superior sense of smell made them ideal for this purpose, standing apart from other herding dogs of the era.

A man named Max von Stephanitz is credited as the founder of the breed, fascinated by its intelligence, strength, and agility. As modernisation led to a decrease in the need for herding dogs, these multi-skilled canines were rapidly adopted for roles in the police and military, with their ability to be easily trained rightly recognised and utilised.

The Dachshund’s Distinguished Lineage


The Dachshund’s history dates back to at least the 15th century. These charismatic dogs, developed in Germany too, were bred for a different kind of work – hunting. The name ‘Dachshund’ translates to ‘badger dog’, summarising their original role aptly. Their small size, solid build, and fearless nature played a crucial part in their work, allowing them to dig into badger dens and chase the animals out.

The Dachshund’s distinctive long body and short legs were selectively bred to help them navigate through narrow burrows. Moreover, their loud, deep bark (unusual for a small dog) was helpful in signalling their location underground to hunters.

The Advent of the German Shepherd Dachshund Mix

The history of the German Shepherd Dachshund mix is a bit less documented, as is the case for many designer breeds. Mixing these dogs likely started in the late 20th to early 21st century, as the demand for mixed-breed dogs began to spike. The aim was probably to create a unique family pet that would blend the German Shepherd’s resilience, intellect, and protective nature and the spirited, friendly, and akin-to-family nature of the Dachshund.

Like other mixed breed dogs, purebred dog registries don’t recognise the Dachshund German Shepherd mix. However, they are recognised by the International Designer Canine Registry (IDCR), which documents and controls the quality of designer breeds.


Hovering between the dazzling combination of the strong German Shepherd and the smaller yet courageous Dachshund, the Dachshund German Shepherd Mix boasts a unique blend of physical attributes that can vary drastically from one dog to another. This is the intriguing mystery of mixed breeds: each individual can take more or less after either parent, resulting in a diverse and fascinating array of appearances.

Size and Stature

A German Shepherd Dachshund mix is typically a small- to medium-sized dog. This mix often weighs between 16 and 90 pounds and stands about 10 to 26 inches tall at the shoulder. However, it’s worth noting that the size might fluctuate depending on which parent breed your specific German Shepherd Dachshund mix takes after more.

Coat and Colors

The coat of the Dachshund German Shepherd mix can often be a blend of their parents’ coats. They might inherit the German Shepherd’s dense, short double coat or the Dachshund’s more vibrant coat possibilities including long, short, or wiry. The coat colors can range from black, tan, cream, red, brindle, and even sable, depending on the coat color variants of the parent breeds.

Facial Features and Body Build

In terms of facial features, they are likely to have a head that is not as broad as a German Shepherd’s but not as elongated as a Dachshund’s. Their eyes are usually a soulful dark brown, complete with an intelligent and endearing gaze. The German Shepherd Dachshund mix may also exhibit semi-flopped or floppy ears, akin to those of a Dachshund, or may retain the German Shepherd’s well-pricked, alert ears.

The body build of the Dachshund German Shepherd Mix is indeed an interesting spectacle. They can have the more elongated body of a Dachshund accompanied by a robust torso or a more proportional body shape like the German Shepherd. The Dachshund parent’s short, stout legs might also appear, paired with an instinctively high tail.


Just as striking as their awe-inspiring shapes and sizes is the unique temperament of the German Shepherd Dachshund Mix. This crossbreed inherits traits from both parents, resulting in a smart, playful, and protective puppy with a streak of independence.

Intelligence and Trainability

The Dachshund German Shepherd Mix is an intelligent breed, embodying the keen intellect of the German Shepherd. This makes them quick learners and highly trainable dogs. However, they also inherit the slightly stubborn streak of the Dachshund, which can initially make training a bit of a challenge. Consistent, positive reinforcement methods work best with these dogs, turning the learning process into a rewarding and enjoyable experience for them.

Playfulness and Energy Level

Allied to this intelligence is a playful nature. The Dachshund German Shepherd Mix loves exploring its environment and engaging in activities that stimulate its mind. They are energetic dogs who enjoy walks, runs and playing fetch. However, due to their Dachshund lineage, one should be vigilant about excessive jumping or rough play that could potentially harm their backs.

Protective and Loyal

Deriving traits from the protective German Shepherd, the breed develops a close and loyal bond with its human family. They are vigilant and will alert their family members of any perceived threats. This protective persona makes them good watchdogs, a trait reflective of their German Shepherd ancestry.

Socialization and Friendliness

With their Dachshund side in the mix, these dogs get along well with family members and may prefer one member to whom they may become particularly attached. Socializing them early is advisable to nurture a balanced temperament, particularly if you have young children or other pets. They are generally tolerant of other dogs and may exhibit friendliness once familiarised.


The Dachshund’s long history as an independent hunter that could make decisions while on the trail reflects in the German Shepherd Dachshund Mix’s temperament. They may display periods of independence, always coupled with an inherent friendly intent—another testament to their rich, diversified lineage.

Energy Level and Exercise Needs

When considering a German Shepherd Dachshund Mix as a pet, understanding their energy levels and exercise needs is crucial in providing them with a healthy and happy lifestyle. Both parent breeds possess their share of energy, with the German Shepherd being known for requiring regular physical activity. At the same time, the Dachshund brings its tenacity and hunting instincts to the mix.

Energy Levels

The Dachshund German Shepherd Mix is typically a moderately energetic breed. They combine the endurance of the German Shepherd with the enthusiasm and spirit of the Dachshund, resulting in a dog that loves to play and engage in physical activities. However, it’s important to remember that their energy levels may vary, with some dogs being more dynamic than others, depending on their inherited traits.

Exercise Needs

The Dachshund German Shepherd Mix requires regular exercise to maintain physical and mental well-being. Daily walks or runs, ideally for 45 to 60 minutes per day, are recommended. Keep in mind that their exercise needs should be gradually increased, especially in the early stages, to prevent any potential strain on their back due to their elongated bodies.

In addition to walks and runs, the German Shepherd Dachshund Mix may also enjoy interactive play sessions. Playing fetch, hide-and-seek, or engaging with puzzle toys will leave them mentally stimulated and content.

Mental Stimulation

To complement their physical exercise, it’s essential to provide the German Shepherd Dachshund Mix with activities that challenge their intellect and cognitive abilities. Obedience training, agility courses, and interactive toys provide an excellent way to keep their minds sharp and occupied, preventing boredom and developing undesirable behaviors.

Considerations for Exercise

While meeting the exercise needs of the Dachshund German Shepherd Mix, it’s important to be cautious of their physical limitations, particularly due to their Dachshund heritage. Avoid activities involving excessive jumping or rough play that may put undue stress on their back. Understanding and being attentive to their specific physical structure will help ensure a healthy and happy life.

Living with a Dachshund German Shepherd Mix

Sharing your life with a German Shepherd Dachshund Mix can be a joyful, heart-warming experience that brings many cherished moments. The unique blend of traits from both parents’ breeds results in a versatile, engaging, and affectionate companion. Living with a Dachshund German Shepherd Mix involves understanding their temperament, activity level, and social needs to make your time together enjoyable and rewarding.

Adjusting to Home Life

The German Shepherd Dachshund Mix adapts well to various living environments, including apartments, suburban homes, or countryside dwellings. They can thrive in most living situations if they have sufficient exercise, mental stimulation, and a cozy space to call their own.

Social Interactions

As a loyal and protective breed, your Dachshund German Shepherd Mix will form strong bonds with you and your family members. They may be initially cautious around new people or animals, but with proper socialization from a young age, they can become more open, friendly, and accepting of unfamiliar faces.

Always introduce them gently and positively to new experiences, environments, and social interactions—this will help build their confidence and develop a well-rounded temperament. The breed’s social nature makes it an ideal family pet that can coexist harmoniously with children and other pets in the household.

Training and Obedience

Consistent and positive reinforcement training is essential for living harmoniously with a German Shepherd Dachshund Mix. Their intelligence and eagerness to learn make them suitable for various types of training, including obedience, agility, and even tricks. Besides, keeping a balanced and disciplined routine in training sessions will help channel their energy positively and strengthen your bond with your furry companion.

Grooming and Healthcare

Regular grooming will keep your Dachshund German Shepherd Mix looking and feeling its best. Depending on the type of coat they inherit, you may need to brush them daily or weekly to minimize shedding and to keep their coat healthy. Additionally, ensure regular dental care, nail trimming, and ear cleaning to maintain their health and well-being.

Familiarize yourself with the breed’s specific health concerns, such as back issues related to their elongated Dachshund body, and schedule routine veterinarian check-ups to ensure they remain in exceptional health.

Enjoying Shared Activities

One of the greatest joys of living with a German Shepherd Dachshund Mix is engaging in shared activities that nourish your bond and stimulate them physically and mentally. From exploring the great outdoors together to cuddling on the couch after an active day, the possibilities for making memories and enriching their lives are endless.

Is the German Shepherd Dachshund a Good Family Dog?

When contemplating the right breed for your family, the German Shepherd Dachshund Mix is a compelling choice effortlessly.

Loyal and Protective

Inherited from its German Shepherd ancestry, the German Shepherd Dachshund Mix is a loyal and protective dog that tends to form deep bonds with its family. Their keen instincts and alert temperament make them excellent watchdogs, providing your family with a comforting sense of security.

Playful and Energetic

Brimming with an energetic and playful personality, the German Shepherd Dachshund Mix is always up for fun and games. This combined with their moderate activity level can match the energy and enthusiasm of children, making them excellent companions. Just supervise playtime with younger children to avoid accidental rough handling, keeping the experiences enjoyable and safe for everyone.

Affable and Social

The breed displays a friendly disposition and enjoys the company of their family members. With proper training and socialization from a young age, they can also get along well with other pets in the household. Their friendly nature is sure to enrich your family’s lives with warm and joyous interactions.

Intelligent and Trainable

Their intellectual capacity should not be underestimated. The German Shepherd Dachshund Mix is a quick learner, responding well to various forms of training. This applies not only to obedience training, but also house rules, and young children can learn valuable lessons about responsibility and care.

Suitable for Varied Living Situations

Whether your family lives in an apartment, a suburban house, or has the luxury of wide-open countryside, the German Shepherd Dachshund Mix can adapt well, as long as they’re given their required exercise and mental stimulation.

Health and Lifespan

Generally healthier than their purebred counterparts, mixed breeds like the German Shepherd Dachshund Mix are known to have a longer lifespan. With a proper diet, regular exercise, and vet check-ups, they are likely to enjoy a fulfilling life with your family.

Final Thoughts

Choosing a new family member is a personal decision that requires careful consideration of your family’s lifestyle, environment, and commitment. While the German Shepherd Dachshund Mix undeniably has traits that make it a wonderful family dog, what ultimately matters is the love, care, and companionship that your family can provide for this remarkable breed making them a cherished family member.

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