I must say, presenting the magnificent Lab German Shepherd mix in just one article is more than just an usual challenge! These German-Canadian boys have so much to offer, especially when it comes to their family traits!
But, let’s not get ahead of ourselves.
First and foremost, let’s see what exactly is the popular Sheprador. Where does it come from? Is it even worth considering? And, how does it stand in comparison to its impeccable parent breeds?
Intrigued to find out all these things?
Okay, then… let’s get going!
What Are They And What Makes Them Tick?
Let’s put it this way so there’s no mix up – the Labrador German Shepherd mix, or popularly known as Sheprador or the Labrashepherd, is nothing but the pure offspring of a German Shepherd Dog and A Labrador Retriever.
But, how pure and good of a pet can a hybrid be?
Well, let me tell you a secret – the purest breed can be a bad pet if you don’t put time, effort, and training into it. And, the biggest mutant can be a life-changing friend given adequate socialization and devotion from the owner.
So, let’s not get carried away. The Lab German Shepherds’ impeccability truly depends on the way it is treated. But, I’ll give them this – considering their parent breeds, they have a really good starting place!
Both of these breeds belong to the group of the best family dogs in the world. And, that’s one heck of a position, right!?
The Offspring Of The 90s
Although you couldn’t find them in the IDCR registry until a decade or two ago – the history of this designer canine goes way back into history.
It is believed that the first Lab German Shepherd was born way before they were intentionally designed. The reason lies in a simple fact – GSDs and Labs are two of the most popular dogs in the world, and their accidental breeding was simply a matter of time.
However, the breed’s official history record goes back to the 1990s, when hybrids were first accepted as designer dogs.
Today, you can find them all over the U.S. and Europe. They’re proud members of many clubs, such as the IDCR (International Designer Canine Registry).
A Designer Dog With A Reputation
The fact that the Sheprador comes from two extremely popular and widely represented breeds makes it highly reputable.
On one side, we have the multi-purposeful GSD – the dog so represented in so many aspects of human life that he’s practically a living legend. In fact, according to Tenner1, the GSD “has become a ubiquitous living monument and export object.”
They’re police officers, military dogs, family dogs, workers in the field, search and rescue dogs, and what not…
On the other hand, Labs are one of the most popular breeds in the United States. According to CNBC, they’re currently on the very top of the list of the most desirable dogs in this country, right next to French Bulldogs.
They’re Large And Love To Be In Charge
Although Labs aren’t exactly the best guard dogs in the world according to Walton And Adamson2, their GSD DNA adds to their guarding skills.
Given their physical dominance and size, they can make pretty good watchdogs and guardians of the family. The average Lab German Shepherd stands between 22 and 27 inches. On the other hand, you won’t see a Sheprador below 60 pounds or above 95.
Their sturdy, dominant physique is usually beautified with amazing coat color patterns, such as black, white, gray, blue, cream, and red.
A Big Yard, Please
If you have ever heard that Labs are the worst dogs ever – it is probably because they’re not in a proper home. These Canadian boys require a spacious home where they can exercise their full potential.
Well, this fully applies to their offspring – the Sheprador! Unless you’re planning to commute every morning to a dog park and then take them out on a regular walk in the afternoon – don’t get one.
These designer boys require a big yard, which is why their best fit would probably be a family living in the country.
Kids And Family First
Despite their watchdog traits, Shepradors get along with kids and other pets amazingly! In fact, their GSD parent is known to even get along with cats if they get the proper amount of socialization.
That’s why you don’t need to worry about your smallest family members getting along with these big boys and girls. Lab Shepherds just love kids! And, kids love Lab Shepherds!
There’s just something in their relationship that an adult cannot comprehend. Maybe it’s because they’re both young at heart despite the age your dog might be.
Show Me Your ID, Stranger
The main characteristic of every full-blooded German Shepherd is their constant “on alert” attitude! That’s just who they are and you can’t do anything about it!
The same applies to the vast majority of Shepradors – they love having your back at all times!
If you like having your friends over for dinner or taking your dog to some social events – you may want to work on its social skills first. Sure, they know how to behave and how to obey, but you need to teach them that not every stranger is a potential intruder!
Some Health Issues Might Get Problematic
Just like many large dog breeds, these hybrid canines are prone to gastric dilatation and volvulus, popularly known as bloat.
Their dieting needs to be put in order as well as the amount of food that you give them. Inadequate feeding can lead to excessive bloating, which can even have deadly repercussions.
On the other hand, Shepradors, just like their parents, are prone to hip dysplasia. That’s why it’s highly required to only pick them up from reputable breeders who provide their full medical record.
Lab Shepherds, although a designer breed, are unique dogs that have plenty to offer! They’re not just accidental descendants of two amazing breeds, but a unique, brand new breed themselves.
Aside from being quite intelligent and trainable, they’re amazing family dogs and workers. Getting them as life companions is never a mistake… ever!
- Tenner, E. (2017). Constructing the German Shepherd Dog. Rutgers University, Vol. 36, Issue 3.
- Walton, J. and Adamson, E. (2007). Labrador Retrievers For Dummies. John Wiley & Sons, Inc. Hoboken, NJ.