German Shepherd Pitbull Mix: German Pitbull

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A Pitbull Shepherd mix temperament is a major point of contention for most prospective dog owners. Most people assume that a German Shepherd Pitbull mix full grown dog will be aggressive and difficult to manage. However, when properly cared for and trained, the German Pitbull can easily be an affectionate guardian companion for your family. Read on to understand facts and techniques on how to take care of a German Shepherd cross Pitbull.

What is a German Pitbull?

A “German Pitbull” or “Pitbull Shepherd” is the resulting offspring of a GSD and Pitbull Terrier. In terms of appearance, this breed tends to display most of the signature Pitbull Terrier head characteristics; broad, with a short muzzle. Ears tend to vary from floppy and soft to straight and pointed.

In terms of how big do German Shepherd Pitbull mixes get; this dog can stand as tall as 2.2 ft (0.7 m) and weigh as much as 90 lbs (about 41 kg).

Additional physical traits include a black, white, tan, gray, fawn or brown-colored coat, and light or dark brown eyes. Brindle German Shepherd Pitbull mixes are also a common occurrence.

What are some basic facts about German Pitbulls?

The following section details some practical and applicable information pertaining to German Pitbulls mix dogs.

Life span

A German Shepherd Pitbull mix full grown dog can live for about 10 – 12 years of age.


A German Shepherd Pitbull mix puppy can cost between US$450 – $900.

Commonly-occurring known health problems

Take note of the following known ailments and diseases known primarily to affect German Shepherd Pitbull mixes.

Skin problems

Originating mainly from the Pitbull Terrier side, a German Pitbull is known to suffer from atopic dermatitis, zinc-responsive dermatitis, dry skin and generally very sensitive skin. It is normal to have extreme allergic reactions happen to your German Pitbull’s skin from contact with fleas, pollen, mold spores, ticks or other allergens. 

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Symptoms include dry or flaky skin, excessive scratching and foul-smelling discharge from the affected areas, loss of fur in the affected areas, rashes and blisters. Black German Shepherd Pitbull mixes usually are easier to check than brindle German Shepherd Pitbull mixes for skin problems as their coat color is more uniform and has no streaking that can potentially hide irritated areas. 

Joint problems

Hip dysplasia is the most common joint problem you can expect from your German Pitbull. Joint problems usually transfer over genetically from the GSD parent. Insufficient exercise and a poor diet may worsen the joint issues. Additional known joint problems include patellar luxation and elbow dysplasia. Depending on the GSD parent’s genetics, symptoms of joint problems can show in a German Shepherd Pitbull mix puppy as young as 3 – 4 months old.

Symptoms of joint problems include stiffness in the leg areas, pain when exercising, and displays of aggressive behavior from your German Pitbull when touching or having your hand near the vicinity of the affected joints.

How can I take care of my German Pitbull?

Read this section to educate yourself on what to expect and how to prepare for your German Pitbull’s specific care and grooming needs.


Depending on your German Pitbull’s genes, its coat can greatly vary in terms of length and maintenance. Dominant Pitbull genes mean that its coat will be short and need very little in terms of maintenance. Short coated German Pitbulls only require you to groom and brush its coat once every two weeks. Use a slicker brush to do this; excessive brushing or harder brush types may induce fur loss.

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If your German Pitbull has a long coat, it is highly recommended to have a slicker brush, pin brush and undercoat rake ready to properly maintain it. Use long, even brush strokes when grooming your dog with the pin brush and undercoat rake, while using the metal comb to wick away any dead or loose fur. Long coated German Pitbulls need to be groomed 2 – 3 times a week.


This is an active dog with a naturally muscular build, so be prepared to prioritize your German Pitbull’s exercise regimen regardless of its size and how big do German Pitbull mixes get.

It is highly recommended to supplement walking with running, jogging or hiking to maximize the time spent exercising and playing with your German Pitbull. On average, your German Pitbull will need to spend at least 1 ½ hour everyday exercising and playing to fulfill their daily exercise requirements.


Caring for your German Pitbull’s teeth means cleaning its teeth everyday. Use a soft-bristled toothbrush to massage the gumline and remove plaque or food particles from its teeth. This prevents the development of plaque and cavities, tooth loss and helps promote good oral hygiene. 

Giving your German Pitbull chew toys and dental snacks at a young age can be very beneficial for their oral health; you can give these to your dog when it reaches 3 – 4 months of age.

What is a German Pitbull’s personality like?

A Pitbull Shepherd mix temperament is reminiscent of the warmth and affection of a friendly family companion mixed with the vigilance and alertness of a guard dog. The following personality traits are commonly found in German Pitbulls.

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Loyalty is a personality trait originating mainly from the GSD parent. A German Pitbull will instinctively protect and follow their owner without hesitation willingly if trained and socialized properly. This is a personality trait that helps in expediting and streamlining training sessions with your dog. 

Early socialization is highly recommended as German Pitbulls may become distressed, or even hostile, towards strangers. This dog breed is known to become overprotective with insufficient training.


A German Pitbull is an energetic dog that adopts its muscular build and large energy reserves from both parents. This means that this hybrid requires a lot of effort from its handlers to prioritize exercise and should engage in outdoor activities or play everyday.

Not doing so may result in destructive behavior stemming from your German Pitbull’s boredom.


German Pitbulls are also known to be affectionate towards their owners and family. This dog breed likes to please its handlers and react very positively when praised or shown approval by their owners.

In addition, German Pitbulls are known to watch over infants and toddlers during play time when adults are not around. It is this reason that German Pitbulls are a good choice for young families looking for a protective companion that is also a decent choice to be around small children. This can be developed by exposing your German Pitbull to small children when they are young.

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