The German Shepherd Poodle mix is a super dog thanks to its Poodle and German Shepherd parentage. Bred as working dogs, the Sherdoodle can brighten up any family dynamic.
While Shep-A-Poo, Shepapoo, and Shepadoodle are common nicknames for this pup, they go by at least 7 others, including German Doodle, Shepherpoo, Shepdoodle, Sheadoodle, and Sheppo Shepherd Poodle.
Let’s take a closer look at this self-confident breed!
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The German Shepherd Poodle mix Army Heritage
The Poodle German Shepherd mix is a new breed that has its origins in the 1960s for use in the United States Army. Combining two intelligent dog breeds was successful as they’re still useful in military operations to this day.
The working German Shepherd dog
German Shepherd dogs are also avid workers who help with scent-based roles like search and rescue and narcotics detection.
Their intelligence, strength, speed, and sense of smell came in handy during the breed’s origins in Germany during the 19th century for herding sheep.
The intelligent Poodle
While Poodles now spend most of their lives parading as show dogs, they are just as strong and fast as Shepherds but with more intelligence.
In 16th-18th century Europe, they were useful for hunting and finding truffles when they weren’t pampered and beloved by their owners.
The Shepadoodle dog can be a herding dog, watchdog, police dog, or service dog; whatever you need them to be, they’ll fill that role.
Except if you want them to get recognition from the American Kennel Club. Their designer status disqualifies them from the AKC.
Their lack of purebred dog status still lets them into multiple clubs.
These include the American Canine Hybrid Club (ACHC), the Designer Breed Registry (BDR), the Designer Dogs Kennel Club (DDKC), Dog Registry of America, Inc. (DRA), and the International Designer Canine Registry (IDCR).
Is the Shepapoo cute and cuddly?
The German Shepherd and Poodle mix doesn’t have a standard appearance and can resemble one or the other in varying degrees.
It’s common for the Sherdoodle to have a wedge head shape and a pointed snout. Their head may be smaller if the Poodle parent is a toy or miniature.
Their eyes will be round and brown, while the nose could either be brown or black.
The Sherdoodles’ back may slope if they take after their German Shepard parent. Their back legs could also be shorter than their front unless the Poodle parent prevails. Then, the Shep-A-Poo will have a straight back and legs.
Ears are another mystery. A Sherdoodle could have long pointed ears or floppy, drooping ears that hang down past their face.
Since German Shepherds are born with floppy ears, you may not know if their ears will stand up until months later.
A Shep-A-Poo could have heavy or fine bones depending on the parent but are almost always lean and fit for athletics.
F1 Shepadoodle vs. F1B Shepadoodle
F1 Shepadoodles are a 50-50 mix of both the Poodle and German Shepherd, while the F1B favors the Poodle at 75% to the German Shepherd’s 25%.
An F1 German Shepherd Poodle mix could resemble any of their parents, but an F1B will look more like the Poodle.
If you prefer Shep-A-Poo with more wavy, curly hair while having a higher chance at a hypoallergenic coat, seek a breeder that crosses Shepadoodles with Poodles.
How big do standard Poodle German Shepherd mixes get?
The Poodle and German Shepherd mix can either be small, medium, large or giant. The standard Sheadoodle will stand at 22-28 inches (55.8-71.1 cms) tall and weigh between 50-90 pounds (22.6-40 kg).
To be a standard large dog Shepadoodle a medium to large size Poodle must mate with an average German Shepherd. Sizes will range from medium to large and sometimes giant for standards.
For example, a Poodle the size of a Beagle or Australian Shepherd will produce a smaller Shep-A-Poo.
Whereas a Poodle that’s as large as a Golden Retriever, Pitbull, or a Rottweiler may tip the German Shepherd mix into the large or giant category.
Females will be 10 pounds lighter on average for the German Shepherd and Standard Poodle mix. The Shepadoodle dog will reach maturity at 12 to 24 months and stop growing.
Standard German Doodle’s need wide, open spaces and yards to play in and are too large for apartment living.
If you have an apartment, try looking for a Mini Poodle & German Shepard mix as they require less space and exercise.
An offshoot of this hybrid dog, the Mini/Miniature Sheppo Shepherd Poodle isn’t mini at all. This medium-sized mix breed will average 35-45 pounds (15.8-20 kg) and won’t exceed 22 inches (55 cms).
This mixed breed dog can get even smaller! Breeders will mate a toy poodle with a medium-sized German Shepherd to create a small Shepadoodle.
They often don’t weigh any more than 30 pounds (13 kg) or are taller than 17 inches(43.1 cms).
As with the Miniature Shepadoodle, the name is deceiving because they aren’t as small as toy breeds. Still, their small size is perfect for tiny apartments, homes, and condos.
Straight, wavy, or curly?
These companion dogs often resemble their German Shepherd parent breed and have medium length coat hair that’s denser and coarser. Thanks to their Poodle lineage, they don’t shed as much as the GSD.
Even though a German Shepherd coat is typical, any combination of straight, wavy, and curly is possible, as are smooth and thick coat types.
Even longer coats are likely if the Shepadoodle resembles the Poodle like the F1B variants.
The Shepadoodle breed can come in multiple coat colors such as black, white, fawn, brown, gray, cream, tan, and sable. Facial markings from the German Shepard parent are often visible in most Shepadoodles.
The German Shepadoodle: The Very Good Boy
Shepadoodle dogs are relaxed, well-mannered, loving dogs that are warm and fuzzy from their head to their toes.
It’s hard to believe this breed was a military dog because of how sweet they are, but their hard-working background will appear in other ways the closer you look.
While this popular dog breed does make for a friendly family dog, loves children, strangers, and cats, their high energy could cause them to play too rough with smaller beings.
Their loyalty makes them clingy and willing to please, so don’t be too hard on them if they knock you over.
The German Shepherd Poodle mix manages to be protective without being loud or aggressive, but they will alert you to anything suspicious if necessary.
Shepadoodles adapt well to any situation and are easy to train because they aren’t stubborn.
German Doodles are intelligent and are capable of picking up commands quickly, even with mild socialization. Their adaptability makes it unlikely they’ll get lonely after a few hours alone.
If the Shepadoodle reacts to anything, it’s playtime. They’re energetic while playing and will run their heart out at the dog park – probably making friends while they’re at it!
Breed information: How to properly care for your German Doodle
Your family pet will be low to moderate maintenance dog for grooming, but the Poodle & German shepherd mix requires a lot of mental stimulation to stay healthy.
This dog breed should only be adopted by people who love to exercise.
Shepadoodles have a high tolerance to both heat and cold and can live in most climates if you adjust their grooming needs by the seasons.
Getting physical with your Shepadoodle
The Poodle & German Shepherd mix loves to exercise and needs a great deal of it.
The standard Shepadoodle will need 60-90 minutes per day, while the smaller mini and micro variants need 30-60 minutes.
Combine both running and playing to keep your Shep-A-Poo entertained.
Shepadoodles aren’t usually aggressive chewers or players unless they’re with smaller children or cats because they aren’t aware of their strength.
To keep your pet healthy, pick out a tug of war rope, a squeaky toy, and Frisby so they can workout using different methods. Then, take your Shep-A-Poo out for a quick jog.
Grooming: Are Shepadoodle hypoallergenic?
If you have allergies, a Shepadoodles hypoallergenic coat could be a good match.
Unfortunately, you can’t bet that the Sheadoodle will take after their Poodle mom unless they’re an F1B variant. Even then, there’s still the possibility your pet will take after the German Shepherd.
Both medium length and long coats require daily brushing because the smooth, wavy, and curly hair of the Shepadoodle will tangle without proper maintenance.
Clean your pet’s ears and trim their nails once a week to keep them comfortable.
While it’s unlikely your pup will shed because of the Poodle parent, there’s a possibility the German Shepherd lineage will shine through.
Periodically groom all coat variants and bathe your Shepadoole every few months or if they rolled around in the mud.
If you’re having trouble brushing curly hair, this video below shows proper technique.
In the summer, give your Shepadoodle a buzz cut so their skin can breathe, but keep their hair long in the winter for protection. In case of dry skin, rub cod liver oil on paws and skin.
Hungry is the Shepadoodles middle name
Despite their large size, Shepherpoos have an above-average likelihood of becoming obese.
Some owners may find it challenging to achieve their exercise requirements, which leads to overfeeding. Always give your Sherdoodle a diet that mirrors their active lifestyle.
A massive, 80lbs (36 kgs) dog may need 1779 calories per day.
Your dog’s calorie needs will depend on the height and weight of your Shepadoodle, and because the range is so wide for this breed, it’s better to ask your veterinarian.
German Shepherd & Poodle mix puppies and miniature breeds will have fewer caloric needs.
Wet food is more cost-effective for small Shepadoodles but, don’t skimp on the dry food for bigger pups. Always buy high-quality dry dog food at the vet or on Amazon for all of your pets.
Don’t ever feed your pup onions, chocolate, raw meat, or most human food without permission from your veterinarian.
Shepdoodles are typically healthy
While the Shepadoodle is a healthy breed on average, its designer status can lead to long-lasting health complications mostly from their German Shepherd lineage.
Most of the GSD health problems came from centuries of inbreeding.
Hip dysplasia, elbow dysplasia, and Von Willebrand’s disorder are typical health issues associated with this breed, and due to their long coat, they are prone to ticks and fleas.
Other possible health concerns are:
- Degenerative Myelopathy
- Skin problems (Sebaceous Adenitis)
- Exocrine Pancreatic Insufficiency (EPI)
- Eye Problems
- Patellar Luxations
Shepadoodles live long for a large breed at 12 to 14 years. Miniature and toy dogs have a longer lifespan than the standard German Shepherd Poodle mix on an average of 2 extra years.
The overall cost of the Shepadoodle
Shepadoodle puppies are available mostly from breeders, but you can find them at a rescue website or local shelter in the United States.
German Shepherd Poodle mix puppies will range in price mostly because of size.
Smaller specialized pups will cost a pretty penny, but the shipping fees, location, kettle popularity, litter size, and parent’s bloodline will play a part in the cost.
A Shepdoodle litter is on the high side at 5-9 puppies thanks to the German Shepherd parent.
The average price of a new puppy can be between $250 to $1800.
Shepadoodle breeders are common because of the popularity of both the Poodle and German Shepherd.
Research the breeder ahead of time to ensure they’re reputable, follow their state guidelines for cleanliness, and don’t run a puppy mill.
Ask for information about the German Shepherd specifically because most health issues come from that breed. Be suspicious of anyone that withholds this information.
You may be able to find Shepadoodle puppies for sale at the following locations. There aren’t many dedicated Shepadoodle breeders in the USA.
Find a Shepadoodle adoption/rescue center near you
Rehoming from a Shepadoodle rescue is an excellent option if you’re happy with an older dog or don’t care about health records or the breed’s purity.
Mixed breeds may not have many dedicated rescues, but German Shepherd and Poodle rescues will take mixed breeds if they resemble the parents.
Shepadoodles are usually great around kids and other animals, but always ask if they have special needs before adopting.
Here are a few places that may have Shepadoodle for sale, you may also find other poodle crosses like the Labradoodle and Goldendoodle as well.
- Puppy Finder (USA)
- NorCal Poodle Rescue (Walnut, CA)
- German Shepherd Rescue (N and S Carolina, Virginia, USA)
Who should befriend the Poodle German Shepherd mix?
The Poodle German Shepherd mix is the ultimate sweetheart: kind, loving, and well-mannered.
The Shepadoodle has few disadvantages, especially if you want a loyal dog that loves to exercise and play for hours on end.
But, that can be an issue for first-time dog owners. Don’t adopt the Sherdoodle if you can’t commit to their active lifestyle.
If you can run 12 miles a week, take this pup to your forever home. What do you think of the German Shepherd Poodle mix? Tell us about it below, and share some pictures of your pet!
Further Reading: Similarly sized breeds to the Shepadoodle
- Border Collie German Shepherd mix (AKA Shollie)