Picking a dog breed for your family can be overwhelming as there are so many choices to choose from. Big dogs to small dogs, active dogs to chill dogs, which one is right for your family? A Gerberian Shepsky may be right for you if you are looking for an attractive and active dog who loves to be trained. These dogs are highly intelligent, loyal, easy to train, and have a thick luxurious coat.
20 – 24 inches
50 – 90 pounds
10 – 12 years
Brown, black, blue, red, white, cream, gray, golden
Active families, those looking for a highly trainable dog
Loyal, Intelligent, Social, Easy to train, Calm
Gerberian Shepskies result from breeding a German Shepherd with a Siberian Husky. These unique animals often exhibit traits known to both species. Depending on which parent dog has a more dominant effect on the genes of the puppy will determine which dog species your Gerberian Sheperd takes after more.
The Siberian Husky is a happy-go-lucky dog with lots of energy. These dogs are highly affectionate and almost never meet a stranger. The German Shepherd is an extremely loyal dog with a drive to please its people. They would put their life on the line for you. The mix of these two dogs results in a highly intelligent, friendly, and loyal dog. Read on below to see the different traits and temperaments your Gerberian Shepsky could exhibit!
Gerberian Shepsky Characteristics
Gerberian Shepsky Puppies
When looking to welcome a Gerberian Shepsky into your home, be sure to research the breeder and make sure they are practicing ethical breeding routines. A reputable breeder will be happy to answer questions about the health of the parent dogs and will have done health testing and temperament testing on the parent dogs before breeding.
Gerberian Shepskies are highly intelligent, and great family dogs. They do require grooming and a lot of exercise, so be sure you have enough time to commit to them.
Temperament & Intelligence of the Gerberian Shepsky
The Gerberian Shepsky is a highly intelligent dog. They are suited for being pets as well as being working dogs due to their high trainability and intelligence. Their personality can vary widely depending upon which parent they take after more.
If they take after their Husky parent, they will be friendly to everyone they meet. They will be very talkative, especially when left alone. They will bark, howl, or whine if they cannot find you. The Gerberian Shepsky who leans towards the Husky side will be incredibly loyal and a gentle playmate. These dogs will also be a little tougher to train as Huskies exhibit more independent personalities. This can be helped by being firm, but fair, with them from the very beginning.
Gerberian Shepskies that are more like their German Shepherd parent will be alert and very spirited. They will also be very focused and ready to learn from you. They can be aloof and suspicious of new people, so socializing your dog from an early age is important to deter unwanted behavior. They are extremely loyal and protective. Gerberian Shepskys with a strong German Shepherd attitude will even protect their families from danger if it arises by defending them.
Both Huskies and German Shepherds are incredibly intelligent animals, so your Gerberian Shepsky will most likely be a very resourceful and bright dog. They are known for being able to learn commands very quickly and sometimes even on the first try! They are also both very energetic dogs and require a lot of exercise to tucker them out. Due to their high energy and intelligence, they are well suited to be working dogs such as acting dogs, search and rescue dogs, herding dogs, and military dogs.
Are These Dogs Good for Families? 👪
Gerberian Shepskies are a great dog for families. Their loyal nature makes them not only a great pet but a great protector too. They will become extremely loyal to their owners as well as their owner’s children. They have lots of energy, so they enjoy playing with their families too. Training your Gerberian Shepsky can become a fun family pastime. Because of the large size of your Gerberian Shepsky, small children should not be left alone with them as they may accidentally knock the small children over when playing. Be sure to also teach your children not to pull on their eyes or tail and to leave their food alone. While Gerberian Shepskies are good around children, it is still important to teach your children to treat all animals with respect.
Does This Breed Get Along with Other Pets?
These dogs have a high prey drive and typically do not get along with cats or other pets. If you intend to have your Gerberian Shepsky around other pets you must socialize and train them from a very early age. This introduction at an early age will help desensitize them to the other pets and will help them be calmer around them.
Things to Know When Owning a Gerberian Shepsky:
Food & Diet Requirements 🦴
The high energy of Gerberian Shepskies makes them very good eaters, but they are known to be picky with their food. Just like humans, each Gerberian will have unique likes and dislikes. You may have to try out different dog foods before finding one that your Gerberian Shepsky accepts. You should also try to find treats that they enjoy, as this will come in handy when training your Gerberian Shepsky.
Whatever brand of dog food you pick, you should be sure it is high quality. You can easily spot high-quality food by looking at the list of ingredients and seeing what is listed first. If meat or another protein is listed first, then that is a good sign. It should also meet the standards set out by the Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO).
The Gerberian Shepsky is a large breed dog and requires a good deal of exercise, both physical and mental. They have high energy levels and can become destructive if this need is not met. Due to their high intelligence, they also need mental stimulation to keep them content. You should walk your Gerberian at least once, if not twice a day. You should also engage in play with them every day. This will keep your Gerberian Shepsky happy and healthy. It will also help keep them out of trouble.
Because of its high intelligence, the Gerberian Shepsky can be very fun to train. Though, if they take after their Husky parent they may be a little stubborn at training. Employing a firm, but fair, technique will yield the best results. While they enjoy simply pleasing their people by reacting in the way they are meant to react, it can also be helpful to reward them with treats when training and when having them perform any tricks later on.
Gerberian Shepskies shed quite a bit, so it is important to brush them regularly. One to two times a week should be sufficient. This will keep their coat looking healthy and prevent matts from forming. Their coat is a medium length and very thick so matts can become common if he is not groomed regularly.
Their ears also need to be cleaned regularly to help get rid of waxy buildup. Use a cotton ball to gently clean their ears; never use a q-tip as this could cause damage. His nails will also need to be trimmed regularly to keep them from growing into his paw pad which can cause significant damage. It is also a good idea to clean around his eyes regularly and to keep a lookout that his teeth are staying healthy.
Puppies should be trained from a young age to have their paws and mouth handled so that grooming will be easier later on in life. This will make it easier on both you and your pet as they will be less stressed during grooming if they have become accustomed to it. If you are uncomfortable doing any of the above grooming tasks, a professional groomer is a great tool to use. Some groomers will even come out to your house to groom your dog!
Health and Conditions 🏥
Due to the Gerberian Shepsky being a mixed dog breed, they can inherit health conditions from either one of their parents. Though, because they are mixed, there is a wider variety of genes which typically results in fewer health conditions being seen than in a full-bred dog.
Male vs Female
Female Gerberian Shepskies tend to be sweeter and friendlier than their male counterparts. Male Gerberians tend to be more territorial and therefore, more protective of their people. Female Gerberians can also be easier to train, as a male will be more likely to challenge your authority.
Each Gerberian Shepsky will have its own personality and can vary from the typical male or female characteristics. Your best bet to having a well-mannered and well-behaved dog is to socialize them and train them from an early age regardless of gender.
3 Little-Known Facts About the Gerberian Shepsky
1. They are a relatively new breed of dog
This breed was first bred in the 1980s when designer dogs became popular.
2. They can have heterochromia
In layman’s terms, they can have two different colored eyes, one blue and one brown.
3. They tend to be healthy
Due to being a hybrid dog and having a wider mix of genes, they tend to be healthier than purebred dogs.
The Gerberian Shepsky can be a great addition to an active family who is looking for the fun of training a dog. Their fun personalities and loyal disposition lend them to being great family pets. This dog does require grooming and high exercise, so be sure you have ample time to devote to them before bringing them on as a family member. They can also have inherited health conditions, so always research your dog breeder to ensure they have adequately tested for health conditions before breeding their dogs. All in all, the Gerberian Shepsky is a wonderful and intelligent dog that would be great fun to own and train.
Featured image credit: Ovidiu Constantin Moraru, Shutterstock