King Shepherd Vs. German Shepherd: An In-Depth Comparison

King Shepherd Vs. German Shepherd: An In-Depth Comparison

King Shepherd vs. German Shepherd – are you looking for comparison because you’re contemplating getting one of these dogs? Or, are you just curious about the differences between them? Either way, this comparison guide will answer many of your questions.

I can’t imagine anyone not knowing and recognizing the German Shepherd; they are probably one of the most popular dog breeds worldwide. Unfortunately, however, not too many people know of the King Shepherd.

The King Shepherd is a result of crossbreeding German Shepherds with the Shiloh Shepherd (itself a mix between the Alaskan Malamute and the German Shepherd) or the Great Pyrenees. The first recorded King Shepherd was in 1995. Suppose you’re interested in comparing the two dogs because you want to own either a German Shepherd or King Shepherd. However, you’re not sure which, then you should find a dog that meshes with your personality, lifestyle, whether you’re the outside living type, and your free time.

There are some similarities, particularly in looks between the King and German Shepherd, not least because the German Shepherd genes are prevalent in crossing the breeds that create the King Shepherd. However, these two dogs are very different. For example, the German Shepherd is well known throughout the world for the dog’s Police and Military protection work; the King Shepherd, on the other hand, is known as a “Gentle Giant.”

There are significant differences between the two breeds, appearance, coats, temperaments, and activity levels. This comparison guide will explain the primary differences between King Shepherd vs. German Shepherd, and you will decide for yourself if the King Shepherd is the dog to choose.

King Shepherd Vs. German Shepherd

1. Quick Overview

King Shepherd

King Shepherd
  • Average height (adults): 25 TO 31 inches
  • Average weight (adults): 75 to 150 pounds
  • Life expectancy: 10 to 11 years
  • Exercise: At least one hour per day
  • Grooming: High, heavy shedding
  • Family-friendly: Yes
  • Dog-friendly: Good
  • Training: Highly intelligent, easy to train

German Shepherd

German Shepherd
  • Average height (adults): 21 to 26 inches
  • Average weight (adults): 75 to 95 pounds
  • Life expectancy: 10 to 14 years
  • Exercise: At least two hours per day
  • Grooming: High two to three times each week, heavy shedding
  • Family-friendly: Yes
  • Dog-friendly: Good
  • Training: Highly intelligent, easy to train

2. King Shepherd Vs. German Shepherd Appearance

A King Shepherd’s coat colors consist of sable, brown, black, red, and fawn. Typically you would expect to see a coat with a mix of two of those colors. German Shepherds are a similar color range with tan, sable, bi-color, and black. Some German Shepherds can be a solid color, but generally, you’d expect to see a mix of two colors.

German Shepherd appearance

A King Shepherd’s coat tends to be longer and thicker than the German Shepherd’s coat, probably due to the Malamutes influence. In addition, Kings have two coat varieties. One is more coarse and straight, similar to the German Shepherd. Their other coat, which is probably more common, is long and wavy but not as heavy.

Because of the King Shepherd’s coat length and texture, you’ll find yourself grooming and brushing a lot more frequently than if you owned a German Shepherd. Daily brushing not only reduces the amount of hair on your clothes, carpets, and furnishings it also cleans out the dead undercoat hairs. You aren’t going to bathe your King Shepherd too often because their outer coats are water-resistant unless they roll in some mud or something even more unpleasant.

King Shepherd size and look

German Shepherds also feature a double-coat, the outer, coarser coat that’s water-resistant and protects them from the weather, and a thick undercoat. Their coats are medium length and require brushing two to three times each week, more often if you want to reduce shedding.

Both the King and German Shepherds are heavy shedding dogs, and the shedding will increase during the change of seasons. Neither of these two dogs is hypoallergenic. Therefore if you or another family member has a problem with allergies, these dogs are probably not suitable.

3. King Shepherd Vs. German Shepherd Temperament

King Shepherd

The King Shepherd takes after his parents, the Shiloh Shepherd, and the German Shepherd because the dog is an excellent protector and highly loyal to his owners. The King still has some of his parents guarding instincts, but he’s not quite so in your face.

King Shepherds would need specific training if you were looking for a guard dog, unlike his parent, the GSD. If you want a family pet, then the King Shepherd will still make an intimidating watchdog, but after they have alerted you to a stranger calling, it’s back to chilling with his family. King Shepherds are undoubtedly calmer and more laid back than the German Shepherd.

King Shepherd temperament

Apart from creating a healthier version of the German Shepherd, the breeders wanted a less protective and territorial dog than the GSD. However, the breeders have accomplished what they set out to do because the King Shepherd is certainly a friendlier and more approachable dog.

King Shepherds have parents that were working dogs, and they have inherited the trait. So if you own a King Shepherd, you must find them work. The type of work can be obedience trials, agility, disc dog competitions, flyball, herding trials, and rally obedience; these are a few examples that will occupy your King Shepherd’s body and mind.

King Shepherds are not difficult dogs to train and love to please their owners. So the best way to teach is by positive methods only. Masses of praise, a few treats, firm, kind, and consistent training is the ideal way with a King Shepherd. The dog is not happy being separated from his family for long periods; they will soon become bored, and once frustration sets in, they might exhibit some undesirable behavior.

German Shepherd

German Shepherds make excellent family pets and get on very well with children on one proviso, and that’s if the owner raised the dog with them from a puppy and has also taken them for early socialization classes. The German Shepherd is a guard dog and very protective; for these reasons, they are exceptionally wary around strangers and are untrusting of people they don’t know. However, they are highly intelligent and easy dogs to train.

Poorly bred German Shepherds can be highly-strung and anxious dogs; if these types of dogs have not been adequately socialized and trained enough, they can undoubtedly show negative behavioral tendencies leading to aggression.

German Shepherd temperament

Prospective owners of a German Shepherd should spend a great deal of time and effort searching for a genuinely reputable breeder; if not, new owners run the risk of buying a puppy that’s hyperactive or nervous, or both. Anxious behavior can turn into aggression, and the German Shepherd is a large and powerful dog.

Even if you have bought from a genuine breeder, the puppy should go for socialization and obedience classes from as early an age as possible. German Shepherds respond best when living with a family and in regular contact with other humans and animals. If you want a family pet, a German Shepherd should never be left alone to live outside in the backyard.

German Shepherds are true working dogs and must have work to keep them mentally fit. However, a well socialized and trained German Shepherd is amazingly loyal, extremely intelligent, and versatile; they thrive on being given activities and brain games.

4. Who Created The King Shepherd And Why?

Designer breeds come in all shapes and sizes, and if you don’t see the King Shepherd as a designer breed, you would be wrong. Most people see designer breeds as small dogs like a Pug and a French Bulldog, but large breeds can be “designer” just the same.

The purpose behind creating the King Shepherd was to improve the German Shepherd’s health issues. Two Americans, David Turkheimer and Shelley Watts-Cross, bred a German Shepherd with a Shiloh Shepherd. The Shiloh is also a cross between the Alaskan Malamute and Germans Shepherd.

Included in the mix were long-haired European German Shepherds; the thought behind using European lines was to bring in a wider genetic variation as well as giving the King Shepherd its distinctive longer coat.

5. How Energetic Are King Shepherds And German Shepherds?

Both these dogs are high-energy, especially the German Shepherd. Therefore they need to exercise every day. Some of these exercises can be brisk walks, but some need to be more vigorous. The King shepherd will require a minimum of one hour every day; a little more would be better. The German Shepherd needs at least two hours every day. If you enjoy cycling or jogging, both dogs will make an ideal partner.

German Shepherd exercising

Equally as important as exercise is giving them brain work. German and King Shepherds are by nature working dogs and free-thinking. So they both need their brains engaging, teaching them new commands in obedience training or dog sports that make them think is beneficial to help the dogs relax.

Final Thoughts – Which Dog Is The Best Choice For You?

King Shepherd vs. German Shepherd – are you any closer to choosing between these two dogs?

If you’re looking out for a more protective dog, more aloof with strangers, and you don’t mind the extra exercise requirements, then a German Shepherd might be the best choice. Choosing the King Shepherd will give you a less wary dog who doesn’t need quite as much exercise.

If health concerns are top of your list, then choose a King Shepherd because they tend to be the healthier of the two. That doesn’t mean a King Shepherd won’t get ill because that can happen to any dog. If the amount of room you have is an issue, then the German Shepherd is the smaller of the two dogs.