German Shepherd Pitbull Mix – breed info, characteristics and pictures

This page contains affiliate links. We may earn money or products from the companies mentioned in this post through our independently chosen links, which earn us a commission. Learn More

German Shepherd Pitbull Mix also known as German Pit or German SheppitGerman Shepherd Pitbull Mix is a cross of German Shepherd and American Pitbull, also known as Shepherd Pit or German Sheppit. It’s a medium to large size dog, at about 17 to 26 inches tall, weighing between 65 to 85 pounds. The lifespan of this crossbreed is around 10 to 12 years.

I always emphasize the importance of checking that a breed is the right match for you and your family, so read on to see if the Pitbull German Shepherd mix is the dog for you.

german shepherd pitbull mix pitbull german shepherd mix pitbull german shepherd mix pitbull german shepherd mix pitbull german shepherd mix pitbull german shepherd mix pitbull german shepherd mix german shepherd pitbull mix german shepherd pitbull mix german shepherd pitbull mix

1. What does a German Shepherd Pitbull Mix look like?

It is impossible to tell with certainty what the dog will look like when it is a mixed breed. What we do know is that this breed is more likely to have the face of the Pitbull, with a broad head and a short muzzle. As for coloring, this breed comes in a variety of colors: black, white, brown, tan, gray and fawn.

Given that both the Pitbull and German Shepherd have strong physiques, it is not surprising that this mixed breed does too. Fully grown, these dogs are large, as mentioned in the first paragraph their average weight between 65-85 lbs (29 – 38 kgs), so it is important that you have her under control. You can do this by properly training and socializing her.

2. What characteristics can I expect?

As with all crossbreeds, it is not easy to say precisely what temperament this dog will have, as it will always be a different combination. In my experience, however, they tend to have the following traits:

High energy

All dogs need regular exercise to stay fit, and this large breed usually needs a whole lot. Both its parents are working dog breeds, so it’s no wonder! I recommend at least a one-hour walk a day, providing you have an outdoor space where she can release excess energy for the rest of the day. If you don’t have a yard, she will need a second walk of at least 30 minutes in the evening.

By giving her the exercise she needs, you will avoid undesired behaviors such as slipper-chewing, hole-digging or nuisance barking. As long as she gets her exercise needs met, she will be happy to settle down and relax with you.

Loyal and loving

Pitbull German Shepherd mixes are very affectionate dogs when raised right. While they are good at entertaining themselves, they still love to be around you and make a good family dog. For this reason, it is not a good idea to leave them alone for extended periods of time – I wouldn’t recommend leaving her for more than 3 hours at a time.

This dog can have a very protective nature. This is due to its German Shepherd relatives, who were bred to herd and guard livestock. So while from her point of view she may be protecting her ‘pack’ from a potential threat, this may manifest as growling at strangers or hostility towards people entering your home. To prevent this from the outset, you should socialize her with people as much as possible from an early age.


Both the Pitbull and the German Shepherd are incredibly intelligent breeds. It is no surprise, then, that this mix is no exception. These dogs learn quickly and respond incredibly well to training and commands.

Just as you exercise her body, it is important to keep her mind stimulated, too. You should start training at the earliest possible stage. From as young as 7 weeks old puppies are able to understand basic commands like “sit” and “stay,” so you can start training as soon as you bring her home!

Just look at this adorable and obedient little 9 week-old:


dog leadership

Due to their German Shepherd relatives (who, being the herders of the ‘pack’, therefore quickly assume the role of pack leader), these dogs tend to exhibit pronounced leadership qualities and a desire to dominate.

It is important to keep a close eye on this type of behavior because, if it gets out of control, it can turn into aggression. You can easily avoid this by properly socializing your dog: take her out to meet other dogs when she’s a puppy, whether it’s at the park or puppy training. This way, she’ll quickly learn the etiquette when it comes to doggy greeting dos and don’ts.

While I can’t say that every dog of this breed is the same; they do have a tendency to be high energy, powerful and in need of lots of training. That’s why I tend to be of the opinion that these dogs are better suited to an experienced dog owner.

3. What are the common health problems?

Providing that she has a healthy lifestyle, as we mentioned above this breed can live for up to 12 years. Every dog breed is susceptible to certain health difficulties, however, and it is good to be aware of these so that you can treat your dog accordingly. If you buy from a reputable breeder, you should be able to request the medical history of the dogs’ parents. In the meantime, it is worth knowing that this breed can suffer from the following diseases:

Skin irritation

The Pitbull German Shepherd mix can be prone to skin irritation, which they inherit from the Pitbull side of its family. They tend to have more sensitive skin, which can react strongly to insect bites as well as to fleas and ticks.

To prevent this reaction, make sure you use a high-quality tick and flea treatment. Diet also plays an important part in maintaining the health of the skin. According to the Nutro Company, Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids can help improve the health of your dog’s skin and coat while reducing inflammation.

Hip Dysplasia

Hip dysplasia is a condition that can begin in dogs as they grow and results in an unstable or loose hip joint. The Orthopedic Foundation for Animals shows that both German Shepherds and Pitbulls are prone to this condition. While weight management is essential for any dog breed, it is highly important that this breed maintains a healthy weight to avoid stressing the hip joint.

4. How much will I need to groom her?

grooming german shepherd pitbull mix

This mix has a coat that can range from short to medium in length. While it won’t require much maintenance, to avoid any shedding and keep her looking trim, I would advise brushing at least once a week with a hard bristle brush. I recommend starting your grooming regime when she is a puppy so that she can get used to the routine.

I do not advise over-bathing these dogs (no more than once a month) due to their tendency to skin irritation. It may also be worth buying a shampoo specifically designed for dogs with sensitive skin.

German Pits are usually floppy-eared, which means they get less air circulation and are therefore more prone to earwax build-up and ear infections. I advise that you get her ears checked at least monthly, either at the vet or with a reputable groomer.

5. So is the German Pit the right fit for me?

german shepherd pitbull mix german shepherd pitbull mix german shepherd pitbull mix german shepherd pitbull mix german shepherd pitbull mix

After all the information you have read, it is now important to put this question to yourself. As you can see, these dogs have the potential to be lovely, loyal dogs that are ideal for a family.

Yet they require a lot of attention, walking and training, so they need a dedicated, and preferably experienced, dog owner. You should ask yourself if you think you are able to meet this dog’s needs before making a decision.


Here are the main points to consider before committing to owning one of these dogs:

  • Are you an experienced dog owner?
  • Are you dedicated to walking your dog at least an hour a day?
  • Do you have a spacious house with a yard, or can you walk her twice daily?
  • Are you able to provide a rigorous and dedicated training routine?

If the answers are all yes, then you’re probably more than ready! If not, it might be time to reconsider getting a different breed of dog.

Do you own a German Shepherd Pitbull Mix? Think you’ve got what it takes to raise one? Leave a comment below and tell me all about it!

9 replies on “German Shepherd Pitbull Mix – breed info, characteristics and pictures”

  • Artie Patterson says:

    Your comments are spot on. I have worked with various large breeds all my life. The German Shepherd is my favorite. I recently brought home a mixed breed..Puppy (German Shepard/Pitt Bull) The mom is full German Shepard, the dad is half German Shepherd half Pitt Bull. Our Puppy is high energy at 8 weeks old. Highly intelligent and very affectionate. I have a large family with lots of boys and 1 girl. So our family is definitely the right fit! In my opinion every family member should have an caring active role in raising the family dog.

  • Amber Hill says:

    We rescued a 5 week old German Pitt. In bad condition. We have taken him to the vet and we will begin his shots in about 2 weeks. My daughter fell in love and wanted him. I.told her it would be a huge responsibility and she is willing to do whatever he needs. But, it seems that it is my life being put on hold not going anywhere because he cant be left alone for too long. I feel like im over my head but my daughter wont think of getting rid of him. Now, I love him too dont get me wrong but I like my freedom and I dont have it with him. We’ve never had a dog before so im praying for the best.

  • cathy says:

    No, just NO! These damn Pits need to be gone!

  • Liz says:

    we rescued our 10 week old this last week…. She’s amazing. Extremely intelligent and eager to please ! We have noticed all of your character traits you’ve mentioned above. She has been sit trained and almost potty trained and crate trained and it’s only been a week

  • Evelyn says:

    We have two beautiful red nose pit/ King shepherd hybrid dogs. Parents are papered. The mother is a red nose pit and the father is the king shepherd. They are incredibly loving and protective. For the lady who stated earlier in remarks that they are pits and they should be gone, we didn’t get large dogs to not be protected and no they shouldn’t be gone. They are highly intelligent, active, absolutely beautiful, very large and yet very sweet. They are sisters and both of them have twin brothers. One set of twins resemble a Black mouth cur and the other set of twins resemble their father the king shepherd. He is a beautiful large black king shepherd. So far one of them tries talking – says I love you pretty darn clear, can open doors, can close doors can hear me coming at the driveway which is quite a distance from where we live and highly populated with cars and my car is very quiet but they can easily distinguish my car coming home. One thing in particular that I noticed that about our girls is that they have extra teeth. Four large very pronounced canines on the top and four large canine at the bottom and are slightly more curved than most dogs. And since their father being a king shepherd they are much larger than a Shepherd pit is described here. One is 85 lb and the other is 100 lb and they are pure muscle. Penny and Tori are almost 2 years old and are still growing. They’re fantastic and I wouldn’t trade them for the world.

  • Evelyn Davis says:

    My two dogs are slightly different as they are King Shepherd/red nose pit hybrids. They are beautiful, loyal, protective yet very,very sweet. They love cuddle time and sleep on my bed with me every night. They are both sisters and have been together with me since birth. It hurts my heart when I hear people say to just get rid of pits. A hundred years ago those dogs were known as “nannies” and would watch the children when both parents were working the fields. Those poor babies have heart. They love hard and do just to please their masters. That’s why they did so well fighting. They were fighting to please their masters and those that fought them are the very lowest scum. How sad for these dogs to get such a label because of how they were raised to be. They know no better. It’s the masters fault and so now, they are paying for it with their lives. You’ll never feel more protected with any other breed. (My opinion) and now I have the mix of both brave, intelligent,loving,protective breeds together. I couldn’t be happier with my two girls. If anyone fears owning the mix, don’t. Work with them,give them lots of love, socialize them and feed them right. They are your guardian angels who are more than willing to die for your protection. You can’t buy that kind of loyalty. God bless

  • Adam says:

    Iv had pumba since he was 8 weeks and he is down to the T of what you described, smart, loving, full of energy, and string is a understatement. He is now 2 years and was my first dog for awhile it was kind of like the movie Marley and me. Was a few times I wanted to throw in the towel. But I wouldn’t trade him for anything

  • Dominique says:

    I adopted a puppy that is now a little bit more than 4 months old that came from a rescue ( was selected and got him when he was 2 months old). The mother was a cross between german shepherd and something else ( was around 45 pounds) and father unknown but I think he was a Pit bull ( because of the pictures in this article). I had a lot of german shepherd and I adore the breed buy will never have a pure bread anymore because of the devastating health issue, and prone to have cancer very young. My puppy is extremely intelligent and at 4 months is closed to be fully trained. But important to be consistent, and firm. Needs to play, understand the rules, and is very affectionate. Mine is timid ( scare of noises. But the mother and babies were found in a ditch so maybe) .When over tired you need to insist that he naps because they becomes hyper … looking forward to have him fully grown-up. Having a new german shepherd mix puppy in a few weeks… and, I am going to introduce my puppy to 2 new play mates in a few days…

  • Crystal Anderson says:

    Hi ! We have a shepherd/ bully Pitt mix she was found in the middle of the desert at 6 months old . We adopted her from a friend that had found her – she has the ears of the shepherd dog white chest and speckles on her paws – medium in size slightly shorter snout then the shepherd she’s black with the speckled white ( I believe she may have some Australian kelpie or cattle dog as well ) she’s highly protective and affectionate to those she knows – she’s definitely alpha – but is apprehensive around German shepherds or other shepherd dog breeds ahe also does not do well with most small dogs – which is difficult because we have to take her places which there are no little dogs ( ( (aka a dog park with big dogs only ) She has a high prey drive and she’s really smart !

  • Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *