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Rottweiler German Shepherd Mix

Nicole Cosgrove

June 18, 2021
Powerful and Sharp Minded

The German Shepherd Rottweiler mix is a hybrid dog crossing the German Shepherd and the Rottweiler. He has a life expectancy of 10 to 13 years and is a dog commonly sought after and used for protection and guard work. Some feel this is an aggressive mix but as with all dogs if properly trained this mixed breed can be a good companion dog too.

Here is the German Shepherd Rottweiler Mix at a Glance
Average height 22 to 27 inches
Average weight 77 to 115 pounds
Coat type Coarse, dense, short, straight, thick
Hypoallergenic? No
Grooming Needs Low to moderate
Shedding Low of more like the Rottweiler, moderate to high if more like the German Shepherd
Brushing Daily if shedding is high
Touchiness Fairly high
Tolerant to Solitude? Moderate to good
Barking Occasional
Tolerance to Heat Moderate to good
Tolerance to Cold Good to very good
Good Family Pet? Good to very good with early training
Good with Children? Better with older children or homes with no children
Good with other Dogs? Good with socialization and training
Good with other Pets? Moderate – can view them as prey
A roamer or Wanderer? Low
A Good Apartment Dweller? No
Good Pet for new Owner? No needs an owner who knows how to firmly and quickly establish as pack leader
Trainability Easy to train if experienced, otherwise quite difficult
Exercise Needs High
Tendency to get Fat Moderate to high
Major Health Concerns Heart problems, cancer, bloat, pano, hypothyroidism, Degenerative myelopathy, EPI
Other Health Concerns Joint dysplasia, allergies
Life Span 10 and 13 years
Average new Puppy Price $250 to $850
Average Annual Medical Expense $485 to $600
Average Annual Non-Medical Expense $510 to $600

Where does the German Shepherd Rottweiler Mix come from?

The German Shepherd Rottweiler Mix is a designer dog or mixed breed that has little known about why it was first bred and by whom. There are a lot of mixed breeds being bred now, it became popular mostly in America though that spread quite quickly for the last two decades or so. Some are bred with thought and responsibility and some are not. Be ware those puppy mills and disreputable breeders who are just trying to make money from this trend. Without specifics on his breeding we have to look to the German Shepherd and the Rottweiler to learn more about their offspring.

The German Shepherd

In the late 19th and early 20th century a German cavalry officer called von Stephanitz wanted to breed a superior herding dog, one with intelligence, ability and athleticism. While he succeeded with the German Shepherd it was at a time when demand for herding dogs was actually on the decline. Determined his breed would still be a successful and in demand working dog, Stephanitz used his connections to get the military and police to try the dog out. He was a complete success and he still is.

Today he is used as a working dog in many different areas. He is intelligent and easy to train, loyal to his owner and protective. He is not just a success as a working dog, he makes a great family dog too as long as you can give him the activity and mental stimulation he needs. He does not like being left alone for long periods and can suffer from separation anxiety. While he is wary around strangers he is affectionate and playful with his family.

The Rottweiler

This breed comes from a mastiff-type dog the Romans brought with them to Germany to drive cattle. The mastiffs bred with local dogs along the way. In the South of Germany 600 years later a red tiled villa’s remains were discovered during an excavation and led to the town being renamed das Rote Wil. For centuries these dogs were used to drove cattle and for protection against thieves when the cattle was sold. They were also used to pull carts of meat. When rail came the breed almost disappeared but in the early 20th century breeders took notice and saved them. Over the years they have been used in police work and as a working dog. They came to America in the late 1920s and became very popular. Unfortunately bad breeders jumped on that wagon and the breed got a bad reputation for temperament and health problems so demand decreased.

Thankfully today breeders are turning this around while fighting the prejudice people still have against this great dog. He is calm and confident, brave but not aggressive unless he perceives a threat to his people. He tends to be aloof with strangers, he is intelligent and he while he is trainable he can have a stubborn streak. Females tend to be more affectionate and easier to control than males.


The German Shepherd Rottweiler Mix is full of energy, intelligent and powerful. He needs to be active and tends to be protective of his family. While he is wary of people he does not know he is not aggressive. He is very loyal and tends to form very close bonds. He is not aggressive if properly socialized and trained unless there is a threat to his home or family.

What does a German Shepherd Rottweiler Mix look like

This is a large to giant mixed breed weighing 77 to 115 pounds and being between 22 and 27 inches tall. He looks strong and powerful and can range quite a bit in which sire or dame he takes after in terms of face and other physical traits. For example German Shepherds have a saddle back look but the German Shepherd Rottweiler Mix may or may not. His coat can be short, coarse, dense, harsh, straight and thick. Common colors include black, brown and fawn.

Training and Exercise Needs

How active does the German Shepherd Rottweiler Mix need to be?

He needs a fair amount of exercise a day, at least an hour which should cover a long walk or two plus some play time. He should have both physical and mental stimulation to keep him happy and healthy and better behaved. Running, jogging, hiking, playing at a dog park, cycling, playing in the yard are all good things to do. He is not really suitable for an apartment due to his size and need for the outdoors.

Does he train quickly?

If you have experience with training using firmness, consistency and positive techniques he should train fairly easily as he is intelligent and he enjoys a challenge and the interaction. If you do not have experience then training him may be hard as he can be stubborn and his size means if he decides he is not going to listen to you, and you do not know how to properly deal with that, he is going to get his own way and learn quickly that you are not a strong pack leader. With this breed though it is important to socialize and train early to bring out the best in him.

Living with a German Shepherd Rottweiler Mix

How much grooming is needed?

He does shed but how bad it is depends on which parent he leans more towards. Rottweilers do not shed as much where as German Shepherds shed regularly and even worse during shedding season. Be prepared you may have to clear up the loose hair and brush him once a day to get out the loose hairs. Bathing during high shedding periods could be done once a week with a doggy shampoo to help with the hair, otherwise bathing should just be done when he needs it. You also need to brush his teeth at least three times a week, trim his nails if they get too long or have a groomer do it for you, and check and wipe his ears once a week.

What is he like with children and other animals?

With early socialization and training and when raised with children he is very good with them. He will also get along better with other pets and dogs. His size may mean smaller children should be supervised. Also teach the children not to try and take his food from him, not to tease or hurt him.

General information

He is a great watchdog and will bark to let you know if someone has broken into the home. He will also act to protect the family if they are threatened. He is otherwise an occasional barker unless the German Shepherd side is stronger then it will be more often. He does better in colder climates than warm ones and will need to be fed 3 to 4 1/2 cups of good quality dry dog food each day split into two meals or more. He is prone to obesity of his food is not watched.

Health Concerns

To avoid getting a puppy or dog that has a lot of health problems buy from a reputable breeder who will show you health clearances. Health issues that are a potential for him as the two parent breeds are more at risk to them include Heart problems, cancer, bloat, pano, hypothyroidism, Degenerative myelopathy, EPI, Joint dysplasia and allergies.

Costs involved in owning a German Shepherd Rottweiler Mix

Price of puppies can alter at any time depending on whether they are the trendy pet to have, where you are and whom you buy from. $250 to $850 are the range of prices you are most likely to find at the moment. Initial costs for collar, leash and crate as well as medical procedures like blood tests, deworming, chipping, neutering and shots will be about $450 to $500. Each year costs that are non medical like treats, training, food, a license and toys will be between $510 to $600. Costs that medical for check ups, vaccinations, flea prevention and emergency medical care savings will be between $485 to $600.


Looking for a German Shepherd Rottweiler Mix Puppy Name? Let select one from our list!

This is not a dog for new owners, he needs you to be a firm pack leader. It is also not a dog for people who do not enjoy being active. But if you have the time and spaces for him and know how to bring out the best in him he will be a great companion to stand at your side.

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Featured Image Credit: Barry Blackburn, Shutterstock

Nicole Cosgrove

Nicole is the proud mom of Baby, a Burmese cat and Rosa, a New Zealand Huntaway. A Canadian expat, Nicole now lives on a lush forest property with her Kiwi husband in New Zealand. She has a strong love for all animals of all shapes and sizes (and particularly loves a good interspecies friendship) and wants to share her animal knowledge and other experts' knowledge with pet lovers across the globe.

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