Have you ever looked at a group of dogs and thought mixing all of them would create a great-looking pet with a lot of family-friendly attributes?
No doubt people who desire aggressive dogs have imagined and perhaps even created the Pitbull Rottweiler German Shepherd mix. Does the result measure up to expectations?
A Pitbull Rottweiler German Shepherd mix looks like a medium-large version of a streamlined American Pit Bull Terrier.
The dog has a noble expression with a squarish but long muzzle and a double coat that is longer and thicker than a Pitbull.
This crossbred dog is usually black or black-and-tan, commonly with white markings. It is notable for its intelligence, high energy, pleasant nature, intensity, and power, and is an effective watchdog.
Reasons Why You Shouldn’t Get a Pitbull Rottweiler German Shepherd mix
A Pit Rottie GSD is a rare individual because of its dominant personality, protectiveness, size, and strength. You must carefully consider the drawbacks to making such a dog part of your home.
- Requires a lot of exercises
- Some dogs want to bond with one person in the family
- Size – some individuals can be over 120 pounds
- Dominant personality often inherited from the Rottweiler and GSD bloodlines
- Can be overprotective, especially without proper socialization
- Too strong for many – excessive size and strength for small children
- Destructive without sufficient mental enrichment or a job to do
- Strong tendency to be dog aggressive even with socialization as puppies
Reasons Why You Should Get a Pitbull Rottweiler German Shepherd mix
You may find that this Shepherd mix is ideal for your needs. Multiple qualities recommend the Pit Rott Shep hybrid for the right owner.
- Great one-person dogs for singles, will still protect an entire family
- Potential to be excellent guard dogs
- Very athletic and excel at many team activities, making it easy to establish an owner-dog bond as well as a fulfilling job for your pet – agility, Shutzhund, herding trials, hauling contests, tracking, police work
- Exceptionally loyal
- Steady temperament
- Tolerant of a wide range of weather conditions
Appearance, Personality, Coat and colors, lifespan, and Traits of a Pitbull Rottweiler German Shepherd mix
Appearance – Overview of Contributing Breeds
American Pitbull Terrier
The APBT is a medium-sized terrier that originated from Bull and Terriers in the 1600s in England. They became prominent in the 1800s when English Bulldogs were made obsolete by bans against bull baiting.
These dogs originally excelled in dogfighting. In America, they developed into generic farm dogs.
Pitbulls are 17 to 21 inches tall at the shoulders and weigh from 35 to 75 pounds. They are short-haired and can be red, brindle, white, black, blue, or chocolate. Any of the solid colors can have striking white markings.
The Pitbull’s head is relatively large, its body slightly longer than tall, its limbs and torso heavily muscled, and its tail is rope-like and reaches the hocks. The muzzle is rather square and the ears semi-prick or rose-shaped.
The Rottweiler is an ancient breed that evolved from Roman legion cattle dogs and local German herding dogs between 75 and 300 AD.
In Rottweil, Rotties drove cattle and hauled butchered meat to market. They also guarded their owner’s purses tied around their necks. In the 1830s, they were brought from the brink of extinction to serve on the police force and in the army.
Rottweilers have a relatively massive but balanced head, high-set hanging ears, square jaws, a slightly shortened muzzle, and powerful shoulder, hindquarters, and limbs. Although often docked, their intact tails are naturally long and carried in an upward curl when working.
A Rottie has a medium-length somewhat wavy coat with a thin undercoat. Her chest is broad and deep, and her body is slightly longer than it is tall. The acceptable color is black and tan.
Rottweilers stand 24 to 28 inches tall and weigh 75 to 130 pounds.
The GSD was developed with careful linebreeding from a foundation sire and several regional generic herding dogs in Germany in the late 1800s.
This breed became representative of one of the most versatile working dogs. Originally used as perimeter or living boundary herding dogs, they later prevailed on the police force and in the army.
German Shepherds are somewhat longer than tall with well-angulated stifles and hocks, a rather long brushtail, a powerful long neck, a chiseled head with a long squarish muzzle, upright ears, and sturdy limbs.
The GSD is 22 to 26 inches tall and weighs 65 to 100 pounds.
The GSD has a dense short to medium-long coat with a signature thick woolly undercoat. Coat colors are black and tan, sable, and solid black. Tan-pointed dogs range from those with a classic saddle pattern and minimal markings more like a Rottweiler.
A rare KIT gene will create tri-colored black and tan dogs with white markings. White German Shepherds are not uncommon, but they cannot compete in AKC-sanctioned conformation shows. Dilute dogs are blue, liver, or Isabella, whereby the dilution replaces all black areas of the coat.
Pitbull Rottweiler German Shepherd Mix
A Pitbull Rottweiler German Shepherd mix is quite a bit more complex to describe than across that only involves two breeds. First, you will deal with a greater number of possible mixes.
- Rott x Pit GSD
- Pitt x Rott GSD
- GSD x Rott Pit
- GSD Pit (Note brindling)x Pit Rott (typically black and tan Rott Pit mix with white markings)
- Pit GSD Rott x Pit GSD Rott
- GSD Pit Rott x Rott GSD
With that small sampling, you quickly get the picture as to why a Pit Rottie GSD mix can be quite unpredictable in looks. However, you can count on a few consistent characteristics.
- Head – chiseled and in balance with the rest of the body, pronounced stop; you may see wrinkling or furrows in the brow
- Muzzle – same length as backskull; rather rectangular with strong and square jaws; high and prominent cheekbones
- Eyes – dark brown except in diluted coat colors (blue, liver, or Isabella); eyes are also medium-sized and almond-shaped; should be alert and watchful
- Ears – high-set; sometimes large and erect but can be a rose, semi-upright, button, or hanging
- Neck – powerful with a slight arch where it joins the head; gracefully blends into the powerful, well-muscled, laidback shoulders
- Chest – broad and deep
- Topline – most likely sloping slightly downward from the withers to the hips
- Abdomen – a moderate uptick from behind the ribs to the loin
- Forelegs – muscular, straight
- Hind limbs – very muscular hindquarters, moderate angulation at the stifles (knees) and hocks
- Tail – sometimes but not usually docked in this mix; length of the full tail is to the hocks with a slight and gradual curve upward when at rest, and rising to the level of just above the back when alert
- Croup – gradually sloping
- Body slightly longer than the dog is tall
- Gait – best gait is the trot which is long-reaching, smooth, and efficient with a noticeable spring; there is a significant drive from the hind end
- Size – 21 to 26 inches tall, 50 to 95 pounds
Personality and Traits
A dog’s disposition is less predictable than its appearance, especially when you are dealing with a cross. All three breeds in the Pit Rott Shepherd mix have a few personality traits in common that will pass more consistently to their pups.
- Excellent work ethic
- Prefer to stay by the owner’s side at most times and even during work
- Highly trainable with a self-assured person who has leadership characteristics
In addition, dogs that take more after the Rottweiler or German Shepherd will have a strong guarding instinct and a natural affinity for herding. Shepherds are more likely to bond strongly with one handler and to get along with other dogs. Rottweilers are less likely to struggle with dominance aggression although they have forceful personalities.
Puppies that take after the Pit Bull tend to be friendlier to strangers but can have a higher prey drive and dog aggression than either the GSD or Rottie.
Coat and Colors
A Pitbull Rottweiler German Shepherd mix’s coat quality can range between the breeds.
Most dogs have a short or medium-length double coat that most resembles the Rottie. The outer hairs are straight and somewhat hard while the undercoat is soft, moderately thin, and fleece-like.
This mix’s hair lies relatively flat, giving the dog a smooth and sleek appearance. The tail often has a brush from the midpoint to the tip.
Pit Rott GSD mixes can be multiple colors that reflect the percentage of each of the contributing breeds.
For example, dogs with a lot of Pitbull can be a multitude of colors. Dogs that have a substantial percentage of Rottweiler, German Shepherd, or both will be black-based dogs.
- Black-white markings common
- Tan-pointed – black base with rust, tan, or mahogany points on chest, above eyes, on cheeks, underside, and legs, and under the tail
- Sable – rare in this mix but is an agouti base meaning hairs are banded; colors usually range include a mixture of grays, blacks, and browns; some sables are redder than others
- Solid blue – can have white markings
- Tan-white markings common
- Brindle – fawn base with black stripe-like markings
- Fawn – white on the face and chest common; this mix may or may not have a black facial mask
- Liver – brown
A Pit Bull can live 10 to 15 years, a German Shepherd 9 to 13 years and a Rottweiler 8 to 10 years. You can expect your mix to live about 12 to 16 years depending on her size. Dogs over 100 pounds will have a shorter lifespan than their smaller counterparts.
Pitbull Rottweiler German Shepherd Mix Puppies for Sale
Pitbull Rottie Shepherd pups are not a common mix, although there is probably medium-level demand in some circles. Many crosses might very well be the accidental breeding between Rottweiler Shepherd mixes and Pit Bulls.
Puppies can be free or cost from $250 to $1000. You must be cautious of some breeders. In many cases, the background of a litter of puppies is a guess.
Still, another possibility is that a Pitbull Rottweiler German Shepherd breeder adds in another dog such as a Siberian Husky or Labrador Retriever.
Shelters almost always must play the guessing game when it comes to identifying mixed breeds. Caretakers assign their best guesses based on a dog’s appearance. According to Smithsonian, most breed identifications in animal shelters are incorrect. People with less exposure to so many dogs will be even less accurate.
Grooming Your Pitbull Rottweiler German Shepherd mix
You should brush your dog twice a week. If your dog has a coat like a Pitbull, brushing once weekly with a soft-bristled brush by Hertzko will suffice.
On the other hand, if your cross has the thick coat of a GSD, you will probably want to brush her three times a week.
Most dogs will shed more profusely during a week or two before the season changes for winter and again preceding the summer. You will have to increase your brushing to at least every other day.
Although the Pitbull Rottweiler German Shepherd mix is a year-round shedder regardless of coat type, it is easy to keep clean and not prone to mats.
You will need to trim your dog’s claws and bathe her every month or two. Wipe her face with a damp cloth daily, remove eye boogers, and check her ears. You can lightly swab your pet’s ears with tissue paper or a Q tip when you notice excess wax.
Pitbull Rottweiler German Shepherd Mix Health Problems
A mix can suffer all genetic health issues of any of the parent breeds. However, with a larger gene pool, you can witness a decreased occurrence of some problems like an enlarged heart, urinary bladder stones, and hip dysplasia. These are some of the most common problems of the Pit Rottie GSD mix.
- Hip dysplasia – growth difficulties of the hip joint that disrupt cartilage in the area
- Elbow dysplasia – is similar to hip dysplasia, but the elbow is a more complex joint with three focal areas of the disease
- Allergies – secondary infections, skin problems, and ear infections
- Degenerative myelopathy – progressive loss of nerve function; eventual paralysis
- Torn ACL – ligament in the knee
- Hypothyroidism – thyroid gland does not produce enough thyroid hormones responsible for metabolism, skin health, and other functions
- Bone cancer
- Epilepsy – seizure disorder
- Diabetes – poor control of blood glucose levels; blood sugar is elevated and the dog requires supplementary insulin
- Heart disease – aortic stenosis is not uncommon in Rotties and Shepherds whereby the passage through the left side of the heart is too narrow, leading to overworking of the heart
- Bloat – refers to distension and torsion of the stomach and can be life-threatening; most common in large-breed deep-chested dogs
Pitbull Rottweiler German Shepherd Mix Food Requirements
All mixed and purebred dogs require macronutrients in their diets.
- Protein – should make up the largest portion of a dog’s diet with the possible exception of moisture; should come from the clean flesh of animals such as beef, chicken, turkey, duck, or lamb, or a named animal protein meal
- Fat – includes fish and plant oils; examples are salmon, cod, olive, or flaxseed
- Carbohydrates – dogs do not require carbohydrates to live, but possible benefits include antioxidants in berries and veggies; starches and grains can encourage weight gain in animals that fail to maintain their condition
- Vitamins and minerals – sometimes chelated for increased bioavailability
- Supplements – dog food often offers additives like glucosamine for arthritis, ginseng for cognitive functions, and probiotics for digestion
Dog food has more options than ever, especially with the shift to feeding holistic, raw, or whole food diets. Homemade diets are an option if you have enough time for preparation and the desire to learn about canine nutritional balance. Blue Buffalo Wilderness Large Breed is our recommendation.
Your dog will require about 23 to 28 calories per pound of body weight each day. If you are feeding fresh or raw meats and produce, you should feed your pet approximately 2.5% of her body weight per day.
Growing puppies, nursing mothers, and active dogs need a higher caloric intake per pound. Working dogs may require more calories even than puppies during their fastest growth spurts.
Pitbull Rottweiler German Shepherd mix Exercise Requirements
Your crossbred will require two hours or more of daily exercise as an adult. Part of your routine should include a review of basic obedience mixed with advanced training. Activities like agility are shortcuts for incorporating mental enrichment and physical exertion in one session.
Growing puppies should get five minutes of daily physical exercise for each month of age. Your focus with a pup should be on training and socialization.
Pitbull Rottweiler German Shepherd mix Training
Training of any dog should begin within days of when you bring it home. Puppies can take in education even as early as eight weeks old.
Your Pitbull Rottweiler German Shepherd mix will be a large and self-assured dog, so, ideally, you should establish your authority when he is still young and tiny.
Pitbulls are willing to please and often have the attitude that they will do anything for you. While the Rottweiler and GSD are both considered trainable breeds, it is only after you garner their respect. It is not uncommon for a Rottie or GSD to challenge you on multiple occasions.
You will not ultimately win a physical altercation with this mix. Your best approach to training is to use persistence, consistency, firm corrections, and positive reinforcement. Toys and play breaks can be as effective as food for this mix.
You will be working with a highly intelligent and sensitive breed. All three of the contributory breeds are within the top 50 in working intelligence with the GSD and Rottie No. 10 or higher. Harsh or punitive training methods will impede your dog’s ability or willingness to learn.
Pitbull Rottweiler German Shepherd mix and Families
The Pitbull Rottweiler German Shepherd mix is a working dog that can be a spectacular companion for many types of families.
Pitbulls have excellent adjustability and can do well with couples or large families. They also adapt to different living spaces if they get enough exercise. A Pitbull is happy to form bonds with all family members.
German Shepherds tend to bond most strongly with one person although you can socialize them to be more family-oriented. Rottweilers are gregarious with the entire family, but they may pick one or two favorite people.
Both Rotties and Shepherds will be protective of everyone in the household, seeing all members as belonging to their leader.
Your mixed-breed dog will be social with the entire family although she may pick one to three favorite members. She will likely be at least mildly protective of your property but also social with your guests.
Socialization is a consistent theme in this mix and is vital to its harmonious interactions with children.
Your dog is likely to be a great playmate for your young ones but might not be so tolerant of unfamiliar children. The breed is generally friendly enough to warm up to youths with a proper introduction.
Again, breed composition can play a part in how your dog reacts to strangers. Finally, be extra vigilant around toddlers because the Pittie Rottie GSD mix is strong, potentially rough, and rambunctious.
Pitbull Rottweiler German Shepherd mix and other pets
Your Pit Rottie GSD mix will get along with other dogs in the household and probably the cat if exposed to it early in life.
Despite inherent dog aggressive tendencies, establishing your authority and being relentless about socializing your puppy should make your household peaceful. Neutering all dogs can help tremendously against aggression.
It is not unreasonable to expect that many individuals of this mix will do well at dog parks. Use extreme caution with allowing your dog to play with other dogs under 25 pounds.