German Shepherd Wolf Mix: A Noble Yet Unpredictable Wolfdog

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to own a wolf? Because adopting a German Shepherd Wolf Mix is as close as you could ever get to that without actually adopting a wild wolf. Needless to say, owning a wild wolf is far from a good idea for obvious reasons.

Still, a Wolfdog represents a very peculiar choice for a pet, not just because of its unusual heritage but also for what owning such a canine requires in terms of grooming and maintenance. As we are about to find out, Wolfdogs have different needs than regular dogs.

Having said that, it would be wise to point out that German Shepherds are some of the most popular dog breeds in the world. As such, any hybrid with Shepherd blood is sure to incorporate its impressive intelligence, beauty, and protective nature.

What Is A German Shepherd Wolf Mix?

You would imagine with a name like that this dog would be closely related to a wolf – and it is. Just as the name suggests, the German Shepherd Wolf Mix combines two of the most exquisite canines in existence: the Wolf and the German Shepherd dog.

Although not a dog in the domestic sense, a wolf shares many genetic markers with the domesticated dog. This is precisely why you can crossbreed most dog breeds with wild wolves if you have any inclination to do so, with almost no physiologic risks whatsoever.

Genetics aside, you should still be wary of crossbreeding a wild wolf with a domesticated canine for obvious reasons. For instance, the wolf genes are almost guaranteed to make the hybrid unruly and difficult to control, not to mention the many issues with socializing the pooch.



As you would have imagined, a mix between two good-looking canines is sure to produce a stunning hybrid. In many ways, the German Shepherd Wolf Mix is one of the most spectacular canines out there, a dog that looks unlike any other breed.

Given the genetic diversity of the two parent breeds, the outcome may sometimes be a little unpredictable in regards to not only aesthetics but behavior as well. In a way, you are only sure of how a Wolfdog will look like until it is fully grown.

It also goes without saying that the dog definitely resembles a wolf. More so, in fact, than any other dog breed regardless of size or origin. The pointy ears and almond-shaped eyes alone are characteristics that you are unlikely to find in any other breed.

Height & Weight

Despite the fact that a German Shepherd Wolf Mix doesn’t have a universal standard of height and weight, you can expect most of these dogs to reach heights of about 24 to 26 inches. In some cases, the dogs may even be taller than that, provided that they are fed a nutrient-rich diet.

In regards to weight, many of these dogs grow to about 70 to 100 lbs, with males being a bit heavier than females. Bear in mind that diet and lifestyle definitely play a role in the dog’s development, so expect these dogs to grow quite large if they receive the appropriate care and attention.

Coat & Colors

Seeing how both the German Shepherds and the Wolves have thick double coats, it is understandable for a German Shepherd Wolf Mix to have a similar coat. In fact, their dense outer coat ensures that they handle cold weather rather well, a plus for anyone living in a cold environment.

In many ways, you can expect the German Shepherd Wolf Mix to have a double coat that may sometimes be of medium length depending on small genetic markers. Either way, you will have to wait for the pup to grow before you figure out the coat length.

In regards to color, these hybrid dogs are usually sable, black, white, or gray. It is very rare that these dogs display any different patterns, although wolves have been known to be pure white, red, brown, or even black in rare cases.


German Shepherd Wolf Mix Personality & Temperament

As you are well aware, wolves are not only wild but pack animals as well. Guided by their need for socializing, these dogs establish relationship boundaries with whoever they interact with and are sure to abide by those boundaries at all times.

When you get a German Shepherd Wolf Mix, even as a pup, you have to make efforts to ensure that you have a good relationship with the canine. Failure to do so will result in the dog becoming erratic and unwilling to obey commands later on.

It should also be said that wolves, as well as dogs, are animals that like to stick close to home. So you can expect the dog to be very protective of the household and anyone in it. Not to say that the dog is particularly aggressive in that regard, but still well-prepared to stand its ground when faced with a threat.


Not many people know this but wolves love to dig. This is something we see in dogs as well, a remnant of their den-digging days before they were domesticated by early humans. All I’m saying is that you shouldn’t be too surprised if your dog starts digging holes in your backyard at some point.

You can expect the dog to be socially shy, not just with people but with other dogs as well. Although strong and physically imposing, the dog prefers to avoid conflict of any kind, even though it fares rather well in a fight if it push comes to shove.

Reserved by nature, a German Shepherd Wolf Mix will prefer the company of the people it trusts over that of strangers or other animals. In that regard, they will often display a very protective behavior, one they will pair with a surprisingly affectionate demeanor.



Where do we even begin to describe the temperament of such an unpredictable hybrid? First of all, the crossbreeding of a protective dog and a shy wild animal is bound to create a very peculiar hybrid. This way, the dog is likely to be very affectionate with the family but very suspicious of strangers.

Although not exactly an aggressive dog, a German Shepherd Wolf Mix is very strong and guaranteed to cause a lot of damage if it ever gets in a scuffle. You should try your best to prevent the canine from engaging aggressive dogs or other unpredictable animals.

You should also know that this dog has a strong prey drive and will surely give chase to whatever small animal is foolish enough to approach your household. Furthermore, the dog is prone to howling from time to time, so make sure to make arrangements for when that happens.

Is A German Shepherd Wolf Mix A Good Family Dog?

Not exactly. A Wolfdog should never be left alone with children and should only be allowed to interact with kids under close supervision. This goes for any hybrid that involves a wild animal because it can be very difficult for them to pick up on a child’s body language.

This is the type of dog you get if you have previous experience owning dogs. To be more precise, this is a dog that needs a firm hand to guide it, the type of owner who knows how to establish boundaries and make sure the dog follows suit.

Caring For A German Shepherd Wolf Mix

You should know before adopting a German Shepherd Wolf Mix that these dogs have very peculiar needs when compared to other dogs. It isn’t so much about their physical necessities but their general behavior, temperament, and personality.

Along with a great deal of patience, you should also consider how the dog fits into your family structure and whether they have a place inside your household to begin with. Not to scare you or anything but depending on where you live, you might not even be allowed to own a Wolfdog.

With that out of the way, you will have to worry about grooming, feeding, exercise, and of course, general care. Along with all this, you will have to ensure that the dog is contained and placated at all times, lest it starts digging, scratching, chewing its way out of any environment you have set up for it.



Based on two very athletic parent breeds, the German Shepherd Wolf Mix needs to run a lot on a daily basis. It is advised that you allow the dog to run up to 30 miles a day if you have the possibility or at least 1-2 hours of normal exercise.

Bear in mind that this is a very energetic canine and that it needs constant stimulation. You could, for instance, figure out a way for the dog to roam around a fenced backyard if taking it to the dog park is out of the question.

Now, this next part is very important – always keep your Wolfdog on a leash/harness when you take it out for a walk. Because of how unpredictable the dog’s behavior can be, you should refrain from letting it interact with other pets, especially smaller ones.

Grooming & Shedding

Seeing how the dog is a crossbreed between two furry canines, the German Shepherd Wolf Mix has a thick fur as well. Be prepared to brush the dog’s coat a lot, even when the dog doesn’t appear to be shedding in any obvious way.

Know that these dogs shed heavily two times a year – once during springtime and once in the fall. Regular brushing will prevent the dog from shedding too much hair around the house but you can expect some of it to make its way onto your rugs and/or bed from time to time.

It isn’t just the coat you have to worry about, mind you, because these dogs also have sensitive teeth. In that regard, try your best to brush their teeth at least once a week and make sure to trim their nails while you’re at it.

Feeding & Diet

It may prove rather tricky to feed a Wolfdog what it naturally desires because you don’t want to focus on a raw diet too much. If you can, however, then you should definitely lean toward a meat-based diet, preferably on the raw side.

Whatever diet you choose to feed your dog, make sure it has a 50% protein content at the very least. As I said, these are energetic dogs that need quality food to sustain their active lifestyle, so refrain from feeding it dog food based on carbs and artificial additives.

Known Health Problems

Even though a German Shepherd Wolf Mix isn’t known to be a sickly hybrid, it is still prone to certain ailments that commonly plague mixed breeds. Among them, hip and elbow dysplasia, which can cause the dog a lot of pain and suffering if not dealt with at the appropriate time.

These dogs may also suffer from gastric torsion from time to time, a condition caused by stomach twisting. You can minimize your dog’s risk of developing this condition by supervising its eating habits and making sure it doesn’t eat too fast.


How To Train A German Shepherd Wolf Mix

Being the intelligent dogs that they are, these dogs may be a bit stubborn to some extent. That said, their German Shepherd heritage usually ensures that the dog will respond well to commands if conditioned to do so from an early age, in spite of its wolf blood.

It is very important that you maintain a strict and firm behavior when training your dog while refraining from giving in to the dog’s whims and wishes. Like I said, these are stubborn and intelligent dogs who may try to lean on your sensitive side to get you to ease your training intensity.

Quick Breed Summary Table

Breed Information
Size 20 to 26 inches
Weight 50 to 100 lbs or more
Lifespan 12 to 14 years
Color Sable, white, black, tan, gray, or brown
Coat Double coat, medium length
Shedding & Grooming They shed a lot, require constant grooming
Temperament Loyal, reserved, smart, and playful
With Other Pets They are unpredictable around other pets
People Skills Reserved around people, they prefer their owners
With Children No great with children
Exercise Needs About 1-2 hours on a daily basis
Food Lots of protein-rich food, preferably raw meat
Known Health Problems Hip dysplasia, gastric torsion, obesity

All Things Considered

This is a unique and peculiar hybrid that requires a fair amount of care and socialization, so unlike most dogs out there by some margin. Because it is based on a wild animal, this isn’t the type of dog you want for your children, but rather a trusty companion for anyone who has experience raising dogs.

Needless to say, the dog requires a hefty amount of early socialization and a clear set of rules for it to follow at all times. As you may have guessed, they make poor playmates for children and other dogs on account of their reclusive, shy personality.

Caroline Jones

Caroline has been a dog lover since she was only 6 years old, when her parents got her a rescue Boxer. Since then her love for dogs has lead her to study Dog Behavior & Welfare. She now educates people on how to properly raise and care for dogs, through her online site, Bark Friend. Now, she's a proud owner of a beautiful German Shepherd.

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