The Siberian Husky German Shepherd mix or otherwise known as the Gerberian Shepsky, is one of the more popular husky mixes out there.
Individually, these dogs are large, powerful, and have big personalities, so is it such a good idea to be mixing them? This article explains everything there is to know about the Shepsky, and why they might not suit everyone.
When & Where Did The Gerberian Shepsky Originate?
Like with all mixes, it’s probable that Siberian Huskies and German Shepherds were already mixed naturally/unintentionally a long time before it really caught the world’s attention…
However, in the 1990s there was an extraordinary boom in crossbreeding and many “designer breeds” were catapulted into the spotlight. Husky German Shepherd mixes have gained mass awareness and popularity since this period, and with both breeds being individually popular, this interesting mix will forever be in demand.
The designer dog boom originally started in North America, but was quickly adopted by countries worldwide, especially Europe.
Although Gerberian Shepskies are most popular in the United States, they are certainly bred throughout Europe, the UK, India, and Australia.
Gerberian Shepsky Temperament
The reason this is such an interesting mix, is because huskies and german shepherds are surprisingly different from one another. So when they’re bred together, predicting their temperament isn’t straight forward.
This is something many other articles brush over.
In many cases, Gerberian Shepskies that receive firm training, a lot of socialization, and a good leader, will go onto being obedient, well-behaved, friendly, and gentle dogs. They will grow very close to their human family, will be loyal and affectionate.
Huskies themselves are often misinterpreted due to their wolf-like looks but are in actual fact one of the friendliest breeds we know of (yep, mind-blowing!) In turn, German shepherds are also capable of being very friendly when raised correctly.
Where it gets interesting: Although huskies make terrible guard dogs, German shepherds make some of the best guard dogs in the world. This makes it fairly unpredictable when it comes to future guard dog qualities… This is absolutely something to be aware of beforehand.
Husky German Shepherd Mix Info Chart
|Breed Information||Gerberian Shepsky|
|Height||23-27 Inches (58-68cm)|
|Weight||60-90 Pounds (27-40kg)|
|Size Classification||Medium to large breed|
|Coat||Double-coat, medium to long hair|
|Coat colors||A mixture of dark brown, black, dark grey, light brown, or light grey|
|Markings||Varies greatly! expect unique facial and body markings|
|Eyes||Usually brown but with the potential for blue eyes or bi-colored eyes (heterochromia)|
|Ears||Erect medium triangle-shaped ears. Floppy ears unlikely|
|Tail||Some tails curl up (like a husky) others hang lowish (like GSDs)|
|Breed Recognition||Recognized by American Canine Hybrid Club. Not recognized by AKC|
|Puppy Price||$600-$1800 (depends on colors, markings, bloodline, gender, breeder, location)|
|Shedding||Heavy and consistent shedding year-round. Blowouts are likely (springtime)|
|Athletisism||Very strong, agile, fast, and powerful|
|Trainability||Trainable to a very high level, but with a potential of stubbornness and defiance|
|Intelligence||Extremely intelligent and cunning|
|Aggressiveness||Can potentially be aggressive and have guard dog traits|
|Friendliness||Can be socialized and nurtured into a very friendly dog|
|Aloofness||May, or may not be naturally aloof. Socialization is crucial regardless|
Should You Get a Gerberian Shepsky? Pros & Cons
Before going any further, let’s run through the pros and cons of the Shepsky. For some, this mix will be an amazing and wonderful addition to the family, and for others, it won’t be!
The following pros and cons are some of the most important considerations that any future owner of the Shepsky should have.
4 Reasons To Avoid The Shepsky ⭐
- If you work long hours and your household is left empty all day every day
- Can potentially be very stubborn, defiant, and difficult to train
- Can potentially be aggressive if training and socialization are not taken seriously
- High maintenance breed requiring a lot of exercise, grooming, training, and time in general
If those 4 points sound like a big problem, then the Gerberian Shepsky likely isn’t for you.
The main thing I would point out about this breed is that it’s not for the “casual” dog owner. This is a highly active breed that needs a lot of its owner’s time and attention, every single day.
Due to it’s size and power, it’s imperative that training is taken seriously, as too is socialization, not to mention daily exercise requirements as well.
And when it comes to training, you *could* be in for a serious challenge. German shepherds are notoriously obedient and love to be trained. Huskies, on the other hand, love to be stubborn and defiant…
In essence, all of this comes down to having time… a lot of time… all the time!
Although this breed can make a wonderful family pet, a lot of time must be put in to get out a well-behaved, friendly and happy dog.
For those that are looking for a more “chilled-out” breed that demands less, then this certainly isn’t the breed to go for.
4 Things That Make Shepskies AWESOME ⭐
Apart from those crucial factors above, there are just as many reasons (and many more) why the Shepsky is awesome.
- They are a striking breed that’s truly unique from all other dogs
- They are extremely loving, loyal, and attentive to their human family
- They can be nurtured into very friendly, kind, and gentle dogs
- They can act as excellent watchdogs/guard dogs for your property and family
If you have the time and commit to providing sufficient exercise, training, socialization, and more, then a Gerberian Shepsky will undoubtedly grow up to be a beautiful, friendly, kind-hearted dog.
Both Huskies and German Shepherds make wonderful family pets, so long as they are raised correctly.
Is The Gerberian Shepsky Rare?
Gerberian Shepskies are a relatively rare crossbreed when compared to standard breed numbers. However, when compared to other husky-mixes out there, the Shepsky is likely going to be one of the more common crossbreeds due to the sheer popularity of German Shepherds.
Although husky mixes are gaining popularity, it can still be fairly hard to come across a reliable and trustworthy breeder.
The Shepsky is without a doubt most common within the USA and becomes rarer to find in Europe, Asia, and other countries.
Interesting article: Husky Pitbull Mix: The Pitsky Guide
How Smart Is a Shepsky?
Gerberian Shepskies are without a doubt one of the most intelligent mixes out of there.
Huskies are smarter than what they’re given credit for, and German Shepherds are just plain smart. Mix these two breeds together and you’ve got a Shepsky that could rival most humans. Yup, I said it…
It’s worth pointing out, however, that while German shepherds are smart AND obedient, huskies are smart BUT very stubborn and defiant. This, unfortunately, generally means training is difficult and long-winded, even though they fully understand what’s expected of them.
So what you are left with is a Shepsky that’s undoubtedly highly intelligent, but potentially stubborn and difficult to train.
Related article: Husky Corgi Mix? The Best Husky Mix Ever?
How Much Is a Gerberian Shepsky Worth? Puppy Price
Gerberian Shepsky puppies range in price and go from anywhere between $600 to $1800. Many factors affect the price including gender, breeder, location, availability, and even things like eye color and markings.
The price of crossbreeds are usually heavily dependant on current availability. The rarer the mix, the higher the price. For those in the USA, there’s a higher chance of getting a Shepsky on the low-end of price range, due to their wider availability. For those in the UK, Europe or Australia, availability will be lower and therefore push up the price.
Usually (not always) breeders charge more for female puppies due to their ability to breed. And if you are lucky enough to find a Shepsky with blue eyes, look to pay even more!
Are Shepskies Prone To Health Problems?
Fortunately, many crossbreeds avoid many common health problems that purebreds are prone to.
This, however, does NOT mean that crossbreds are immune from such health issues, so it’s still important to be aware of the potential health issues that Gerberian Shepskies could face.
Health issues to watch out for in Shepskies: ⭐
- Hip dysplasia
- Elbow dysplasia
- Corneal dystrophy
- Progressive retinal atrophy
- Digestive issues
- Zinc deficiency
These are the most common health issues found among Siberian Huskies and German Shepherds, and are the likely problems that could occur in the Shepsky.
Are Gerberian Shepskies Aggressive?
A very common question about the Shepsky is whether or not they are aggressive. And this is a very understandable question to be asking…
After all, German shepherds are renowned as one of the world’s best guard dogs, and a necessary trait of a guard dog is to have aggression (controlled aggression, that is). Nevertheless, German shepherds are definitely capable of aggressive behavior.
So what about huskies? Well, although they are capable of aggression too, huskies are actually notoriously bad guard dogs and very rarely demonstrate aggressive behavior. In fact, huskies are more likely to lick an intruder, than snarl or bite one! I’m not joking!
Of course, this mostly comes down to how the Shepsky will be raised. While a Gerberian Shepsky will be more than capable of aggression (mostly coming from the German Shepherd in them) they will also be extremely friendly, gentle, and approachable if raised correctly.
And to be completely honest, this is the answer for every breed out there… From the fiercest guard dogs to lap dogs, all dogs can be aggressive when raised incorrectly or when feeling scared or threatened.
As long as your Shepsky is consistently trained and socialized with new dogs and strangers from a young age, they will grow up to be an approachable and friendly dog, rather than an aggressive one.
Are Gerberian Shepskies Easy To Train?
The overall consensus from current owners is that Shepskies are generally easy to train, with challenging spells along the way. It’s reported that most Shepskies are eager to appease, carry out commands and follow their leader. But training must be firm, fair, and consistent.
If a Shepsky starts to lose sight of who their leader is or starts to push boundaries and get away with it, they will likely become unruly and harder to train. It’s crucial that you or your partner establishes themself as the clear leader who consistently trains and corrects bad behavior.
Gerberian Shepskies that have stronger German shepherd traits will likely be the ones easier to train, and those that demonstrate stronger husky traits will be harder to train.
This is because German shepherds LOVE to follow commands, be trained, and appease their owners, whereas huskies are typically rather stubborn and defiant most of the time.
Regardless of how easy or hard it proves to be, Gerberian Shepskies are always highly intelligent. So as the saying goes, if you don’t train them, they will train you!
Are Shepskies Good Dogs? Our Honest Opinion
As both a lover of Siberian Huskies and German Shepherds, I personally think Gerberian Shepskies are wonderful dogs.
The Shepsky, when raised correctly, is a loving, friendly, gentle, loyal, and devoted dog. With this breed, it’s all about how much is put in, to determine what you get out.
This breed is certainly to be considered a high maintenance breed, and the owner must prioritize training, exercise, mental stimulation, socialization, and general daily needs.
If a Shepsky lacks in any fundamental area, the potential for disobedience, unruliness, and unpredictable behavior increases.
Although I believe anyone can raise any breed, with enough time, dedication and consistency, it is true that the Shepsky will be better suited to someone with previous dog ownership experience. Gerberian Shepskies will push even the most experienced owners, and it’s important to know how to react in tough situations.
What do you think about the Shepsky? Please let us know!
⭐ Thank you for reading!
⭐ For now, check out more Husky Mixes >>>
Additional resources used:
DisclaimerThe advice given in this article is for educational purposes only and does not constitute professional advice in any context. Before making any decisions that may affect the health and/or safety of your dog, you should always consult a trained veterinarian in your local area. For the FULL disclaimer Visit Here
Copyright Notice: The content produced and published on My Happy Husky is unique and original. My Happy Husky makes an active effort to search for plagiarized content using plagiarism detection software. If plagiarized content is found, action will be taken.