German Shepherd and Golden Retriever Mix A Complete Guide

German Shepherd and Golden Retriever Mix

German Shepherds and Golden Retrievers are some of the most popular breeds across the globe. They are loving and gentle while remaining playful, making these dogs ideal fits for those with more active lifestyles.

When a German Shepherd and Golden Retriever are crossed together, the result is sometimes known as a Golden Shepherd.

Although their appearance can vary, Golden Shepherds often combine the signature traits of both parents with a thick golden coat and the perky straight ears.

Read on to figure out more about these beautiful dog breeds and their unique characteristics. After reading this article you should have a greater understanding of what to expect if you’re looking for a new furry addition to your family.

German Shepherd, Golden Shepherd, and Golden Retriever Comparison Table

  German Shepherd Golden Shepherd Golden Retriever
Height 22-26 inches 22-26 inches 21-24 inches
Weight 50-90 pounds 60-90 pounds 55-75 pounds
Life Expectancy 7-10 years 10-15 years 10-12 years
Colors Black Black and cream Black and red Black and silver Black and tan Blue Gray Liver Sable White Bi-color Cream Golden Tan Yellow Dark golden Golden Light golden
Coat Type Double coat with medium length Double coat with medium length Double coat with medium length
Affection levels Very loving Very loving Very loving
Shedding Level Sheds a lot Sheds a lot Sheds quite a bit
Temperament Pretty playful Very protective Pretty playful Pretty protective Pretty playful Average protectiveness
Health Issues Bloat Elbow dysplasia Hip dysplasia Hip dysplasia Elbow dysplasia Degenerative myelopathy Allergies Retinal atrophy Pigmentary uveitis Hip dysplasia Elbow dysplasia Juvenile cataracts Heart diseases Retinal atrophy  Pigmentary uveitis
Trainability Easy to train Easy to train Eager to please, easy to train
Exercise Lots of exercise Lots of exercise Lots of exercise
Friendliness to People Somewhat open to strangers Pretty open to strangers Very open to strangers
Friendliness to Dogs Somewhat okay with other dogs Pretty friendly with other dogs Very friendly with other dogs
Drooling Levels May drool a little Little to no drooling Little to no drooling
Mental Stimulation Lots of mental stimulation Lots of mental stimulation Fair amount of mental stimulation
Barking Level Average barking Average barking Little to no barking
German Shepherd, Golden Shepherd, and Golden Retriever Comparison Table

About German Shepherds

About German Shepherds
German Shepherd Dog

The American Kennel Club (AKC) recognized the German Shepherd as a distinct breed in 1908. To prevent the negative feelings surrounding anything associated with Germany back in World War I from escalating, the AKC changed the breed name to simply “Shepherd Dog” during the global turmoil.

Later changed again back to “German Shepherd” in 1931, the breed has since been one of the most beloved and famous dog breeds around the world.

German Shepherds are incredibly intelligent, loyal, and loving which makes sense since they have been a working dog since their inception.

Originally being used to herd livestock for farmers, the breed has found great purpose in their occupations as police, military, and service dogs even being used to detect drugs, bombs, and COVID-19 most recently.

Perhaps one of the most famous German Shepherds, Rin Tin Tin was a silver screen performer that starred in many movies and TV shows. Rin Tin Tin’s work did much to popularize the breed and undo the negativity about Germany.

About Golden Retrievers

About Golden Retrievers
Golden Retriever Dog

Golden Retrievers are famous for their sweet and gentle temperament to the point of being fluffy goofballs. First recognized by the AKC in 1925, the breed is only surpassed in popularity by the Labrador Retriever and German Shepherd.

The breed was cleverly bred over several generations by Dudley Majoribanks at his Guisachan estate in the Scottish highlands to be a working gundog.

Majoribanks, the first Lord Tweedmouth, kept detailed records of how he crossed existing dog breeds to generate his ideal hunting companion.

A large mix including “Yellow Retriever”, the now extinct Tweed Water Spaniel, Irish Setter, and Bloodhound resulted in what we now know as the Golden Retriever.

Even though the dog was bred for the express purpose of the hunt, the breed also found great favor in the eyes of dog show enthusiasts for their beautiful coats. Today, the Golden Retriever takes great pride in its work as a guide and service dog.

About The Golden Shepherd Dog Mix

Golden Shepherds are considered to be designer dogs but are not criticized for that vanity as they greatly expand the gene pool and are usually healthier dogs as a result.

These dogs take after their parents and are incredibly intelligent, loyal, and friendly. With the right training and socialization, these dogs are excellent working dogs that love their families.

What do Golden Shepherds look like?

This is a difficult question for many crossbreeds and designer dogs because they are not typically established breeds.

This means that information about what the dog will look like is usually limited to what is known about their parents and their lineages. It also depends a lot on which of the two parents they take after more.

A Golden Shepherd may have the coloration of a Golden Retriever but have the straight ears of a German Shepherd.

Likewise, they could have the colors and markings typical of a German Shepherd but have the floppy ears of a Golden Retriever along with their more curly and fluffy fur. 

Do Golden Shepherds shed a lot?

The short answer is, yes.

Both of their parent breeds have thick double coats that get passed down to their offspring. Brushing daily is a requirement to keep the Golden Shepherd’s skin and fur healthy. It is important to note that any brush you use should comb through both layers of their coat.

While this may seem like a daunting task to do each day, it will be easier and take less time if maintained and will also result in less cleaning up of dog hair around the house.

As for bathing, this is only necessary when your Golden Shepherd is filthy. Having excess mud or dirt matting the hair for long periods is not healthy but neither is taking too many baths since it can damage their healthy skin barrier. If you do wish to bathe your dog regularly, try to limit it to just once a month to prevent any issues.

Are Golden Shepherds healthy dogs?

Typically, a mixed breed will be healthier than dogs from a pure lineage. This is because pure breeds suffer from a lot of inbreeding which can easily express the genetic disorders a breed is known for.

It is still important to work with reputable breeders to make sure that any dogs you may want are properly screened and raised to prevent the appearance of any of these diseases like retinal atrophy or pigmentary uveitis.

Conditions such as hip and elbow dysplasia are often occurrences in medium to large dogs and are almost unavoidable since they often come with age. They can be mitigated or delayed with a proper, nutritious diet and some supplements as your dog gets older.


When the German Shepherd and Golden Retriever are bred together, whether through natural means or helped along by IVF, the resulting dog is a furry bundle of energy and endless affection.

Early training and socialization will go a long way to make sure the sensible and gentle demeanor of the Golden Retriever shines through and will be a relatively easy task.