The German Shepherd Rottweiler mix is a hybrid or crossbreed between Rottweilers and German Shepherds. The primary purpose of creating these crossbreed dogs is so the resulting dog inherits all the most favorable traits of the parent dogs.
The German Shepherd Rottweiler mix also goes under different names such as Shepweiler, Rottie Shepherd, Shottie, or Rottweiler Shepherd. Both the parents of this mix are hugely popular dogs throughout the world. In fact, the German Shepherd ranks at number two on the AKC (American Kennel Club) most popular dogs in America list, and the Rottweiler isn’t far behind at number eight.
The two dogs don’t just do well on the popularity stakes; they both rank very high on the most intelligent dogs list. The German Shepherd comes in at number three, and surprisingly the Rottweiler is at number nine. I say surprisingly because not many working dogs make it so high on the intelligence list; only one other dog in the working group makes the top ten, and that’s the Doberman Pinscher.
For owners wanting a big dog, this could be the ideal mix; German Shepherds and Rottweilers, while they don’t look much like each other, have a lot in common.
As you would guess from the intelligence of the parent dogs, this mix will be an exceptionally smart dog and is probably a poor choice for novice dog owners. That might be counter-intuitive, but being smart doesn’t equate to a dog being easy to handle; in 90% of cases, dogs this intelligent are challenging to control, especially when they are fully mature.
Should you be considering owning a German Shepherd Rottweiler mix, this article will give you some excellent background information and hopefully help you decide if the “Shepweiler” will be your new family addition.
German Shepherd Rottweiler Mix At A Glance
Personality: Loyal, attentive, calm, confident, playful, aloof, lovable, intelligent, and energetic
Lifespan: 10 to 14 years
Size and Weight: 75 to 115 pounds and up to 27 inches in height
German Shepherd Rottweiler Mix Quick Facts
- Although Rotties are thought of as German dogs, the Rottweiler has his roots firmly in the old Roman Empire. Breeding Asian Mastiff-type dogs, the Romans created the Rottweiler’s ancestors.
- At the end of the Roman era, the remaining dogs worked in the German town of Rottweil as herding dogs, driving and protecting herds of cattle. From here onwards, the dog became the Rottweiler.
- The Rottweiler’s size and intimidating presence saw them working for local butchers as guard dogs and carrying their owner’s money in a pouch around their necks; by far, the safest place for merchants to keep their money.
- The first Rottweiler standard dates back to 1901 in Germany.
- Official recognition by the AKC was in 1931.
- In recent times breeders and owners have trained Rottweilers to be service dogs; in fact, they were one of the first to be trained as guide dogs for the blind.
- The Rottweiler is also a very successful search and rescue dog and can often be found working in disaster sites.
German Shepherd Parent
- The German Shepherd was developed in Germany in the late 1890s as a sheep herding dog. The early German Shepherd owners didn’t consider them pets, but working dogs employed to herd sheep and protect the farmer’s flocks from roaming predators.
- The farmers prized these dogs for their outstanding stamina, speed, sense of smell, and superior intelligence. Individual farmers bred their dogs to these exacting standards. While they succeeded in producing dogs with these traits, all the dogs had vastly different appearances.
- In an attempt to standardize shepherd dogs throughout Germany, dog owners created the Phylax Society. It was impossible to form a consensus between the members regarding the dog’s traits they should promote, and the society disbanded. Max von Stephanitz, a former member of the community, so believed in the standardized working shepherd that he made it his life’s work.
- In 1899 he purchased a dog he named Horan von Grafrath, which became the first stud dog.
- Max von Stephanitz included his German Shepherd as the first to be registered with the society he helped create the German Shepherd Dog Society.
- German Shepherds got their initial US registration in 1908 and the UK in 1919.
- There have been several canine movie stars over the years, but none reached the heights of Rin Tin Tin, a German Shepherd brought back to the States after World War One.
- The dog’s popularity waned after the two World Wars because of his “German” heritage. In the US, they dropped German from his name, and in the UK, the Kennel Club changed the name entirely to Alsatian.
In the UK, the name Alsation stuck until in 1977 the UK Kennel Club agreed to change the name once again to German Shepherd. However, many countries in Europe still refer to the dog as the Alsatian.
German Shepherd Rottweiler Mix (Shepweiler) Temperament
Predicting the temperament of a hybrid dog is challenging, to say the least; the only option we have is to look at the parent breeds. Certain traits of the German Shepherd and Rottweiler you would expect to be passed down to the Shepweiler, especially with attributes that both parents excel at, such as protection, service, and as a guard dog.
In theory, a German Shepherd Rottweiler mix should inherit a combination of the parent’s traits. A Shepweiler should be intelligent, powerful, lovable, family-oriented, and with the right owner, easy to train. If both the actual parents possess all those attributes, then their offspring should also have them.
If you have chosen a professional and reputable breeder, your German Shepherd Rottweiler mix puppy will have a great start in life. Reputable breeders will also start puppy socialization very early, around six weeks. This training is crucial; puppies with the intelligence of a Shepweiler learn extraordinarily quickly; that goes for picking up bad behavior just as fast as good.
As soon as you bring home your Shepweiler puppy, you must increase socialization and begin obedience training. Even though your puppy’s second round of vaccinations will not be due for three to four weeks after you bring him home, you can still begin obedience training inside your home, and you can ask as many people as you know to come around and meet your puppy. Suppose your breeder has already started socialization as he should have. In that case, your puppy will already be comfortable meeting new people and hearing strange sounds, such as the vacuum cleaner.
All of this is invaluable if you want an adult Shepweiler that’s calm, mild-mannered, and obedient because he sees you as the alpha of the family pack. Dogs as powerful, territorial, and protective as the German Shepherd Rottweiler mix cannot see themselves as the alpha.
Raised in this manner, even with children and other family pets, the Shepweiler will be tolerant, lovable, and protective. The German Shepherd Rottweiler mix will be high-energy and athletic. He will require plenty of exercise each day; it also means they need their brains exercising. If you can combine your daily exercise routine to incorporate dog and agility sports that keep him on his toes mentally, you’ll be giving him exactly what’s needed.
German Shepherd Rottweiler Mix Coat And Colors
Because the Shepweiler is a hybrid, there are no breed standards as you’d expect with purebred dogs; they will inherit a combination of their parent’s appearance.
A German Shepherd crossed with the Rottweiler can inherit coat color combinations from any of the following colors: white, liver, sable, black, red, silver, blue, gray, or cream. Shepweiler puppies might not inherit the Rottweiler’s brown face and leg markings or the GSDs face and leg markings.
Because of the thick, dense moderate length German Shepherd coat, your Shepweiler is likely also to have a medium length dense coat rather than the short, sleek Rottie coat.
German Shepherd Rottweiler Mix Grooming And Shedding
Should your Shepweiler inherit the Rottie’s shorter sleek coat, then you’re in luck, at least as far as grooming is concerned. A brush down twice each week is about all he’s going to need. He will shed a lot more twice each year during the shedding season in spring and autumn. However, if he inherits the German Shepherd’s thick, double coat then, I hope you don’t mind an abundance of dog hairs because he’ll shed as much as a German Shepherd, and that’s a lot. You’ll need to brush him four to five times a week, even more during the shedding seasons.
Is The German Shepherd Rottweiler Mix The Dog For Your Family?
If you and your family are out of the house most of the day, a Shepweiler isn’t a good choice because they enjoy being around their family; if left for long periods, they can suffer separation anxiety leading to destructive tendencies.
Also, you need to be there to exercise them at least twice a day and for upwards of an hour each time. They will also require you to spend a reasonable amount of time grooming and caring for them. Owning a Shepweiler is a big time commitment.
A German Shepherd Rottweiler mix is quite a large dog and needs room for him to stretch his legs. If the dog had a choice, he would prefer a home with a decent-sized backyard; living in an apartment would cramp the dog’s style. The Shepweiler’s aggressive reputation means they must have an experienced dog owner prepared to give these dogs the time they need; if not, there is a real cause for concern.
Final Thoughts – German Shepherd Rottweiler Mix
When raised by an experienced large dog owner, the German Shepherd Rottweiler mix is a calm, lovable, and protective family dog. They are an intelligent breed, easy to train for the right owner.
Their heritage makes the Shepweiler a high-energy and athletic working dog. Be sure to give him the attention, socialization, and training he deserves, and he’ll reward you by becoming an invaluable family member.