- Activity Level: high
- Grooming Level: moderate
- Trainability: high
- Adaptability: moderate
- Kid/Pet Friendly: often
- Average Size: Medium
- Average Lifespan: 12-15 years
- Prey Drive: high
- Watchdog: aware
English Shepherd Mix Breed Profile
The English Shepherd Mix is a cross between an English Shepherd and another dog breed. Because a mixed-breed dog can take on any combination of characteristics from the parents, it’s important to ask the breeder about the other parent breed in the cross. Should an English Shepherd Mix take after their English Shepherd parent, they will be a playful, energetic working dog that makes a fantastic family companion.
English Shepherds are known for their playful personality, high-energy, intelligence, and sweet disposition. They are focused and serious when working on a job. But, when they are hanging out with their favorite humans, they are loving and affectionate dogs ready to cuddle and ready to play.
The English Shepherd tends to get along well with children and other dogs. However, they do have a high prey drive, so they will need extra socialization with any smaller pets in the household. They also tend to be wary of strangers initially, but their friendly personality means they also tend to warm up quickly.
The other parent breed is likely to introduce other potential traits that could affect temperament in an English Shepherd Mix, so you do want to ask the breeder about them. You can also meet the mother dog in-person to see what sort of temperament she has and to see the behavior she is modeling for her puppies. Once you get your English Shepherd Mix puppy home it is up to you to continue socializing and training them so they grow into a well-balanced, well-mannered dog.
An English Shepherd is a moderately adaptable dog breed. Because they are high-energy working dogs, they are better suited to homes with securely fenced yards where they can run. If plenty of time is dedicated to giving them enough exercise, attention, and mental stimulation, they can adapt to apartments.
Although they do well in most climates, they are sensitive to heat and extreme cold. They may be independent when working a job, but they bond closely with their families so they do not like being left alone for long periods of time.
The other parent breed could introduce traits or quirks that could affect adaptability, so it’s important to ask about them. This will give you a better idea of what potential range of adaptability to prepare for in an English Shepherd Mix.
Are mixed-breed dogs healthier than their purebred counterparts? They can be sometimes, but there’s no guarantee that they will be. A mixed-breed can inherit potential health conditions common to one, neither, or both of their parent breeds.
From the English Shepherd side, potential health conditions to be aware of in an English Shepherd Mix include hip and elbow dysplasia. They can also pass on a sensitivity to certain drugs via the MDR1 gene.
Reputable breeders will test and screen their dogs to avoid passing issues on to puppies. So, you should be asking about both of the parent breeds anyway. Just make sure to also ask about their health and genetic history and about any tests that have been done.
An English Shepherd is a highly intelligent dog that is also highly trainable. They pick up on things quickly and are eager to please, which makes them a good fit for owners of all experience levels.
They can become bored easily and are high-energy, which can be challenging for first-time dog owners to handle alone. The other parent breed may introduce traits that make an English Shepherd Mix easier or more difficult to train.
So, it wouldn’t hurt to be prepared to enroll in puppy training classes. These classes can be a good idea anyway because they strengthen the bond you have with your puppy and also provide opportunities to socialize a puppy.
An English Shepherd Mix can inherit a coat that is a similar to one of their parents or a coat that is truly a combination of both. Should they have an English Shepherd coat, they will have a fluffy coat that sheds year-round. Brushing a few times a week and the occasional bath is the minimum for this coat. Daily brushing is even better.
Regardless of coat type and grooming level, you will also need to care for your English Shepherd Mix’s nails, ears, and teeth. Cutting your dog’s nails once or twice a month as needed can keep nails from growing too long and causing issues.
Weekly ear checks and carefully cleaning your dog’s ears as needed can help prevent ear infections. Also, practicing good dental care for dogs is essential to preventing painful dental diseases and further complications later in life. Brushing teeth or using an enzyme toothpaste every day is ideal.
English Shepherds are high-energy working dogs. They need a job to do and also need daily walks plus playtime and extra activity to be happy and healthy. You are likely to run out of energy before they do and you can bet they will be up for more activity if you are.
These dogs enjoy trips to the dog park and tend to like things like fetch and playing frisbee. They also tend to be good candidates for dog sports like flyball and agility. You can also try other things like hiking, swimming, running, etc. to see what activities suit your dog best.
The other parent breed in the cross could affect the exercise requirements in an English Shepherd Mix. Even if the other parent breed is a lower energy breed, you will still need to be prepared for the potential of a high-energy dog.
A fully-grown English Shepherd usually stands 18-23 inches tall and weighs 40-60 pounds. The other parent breed can have a big effect on this, especially if they are the mother.
So, you want to make sure you ask the breeder about them. Although it’s not a guarantee, you can also meet the mother dog in-person to get a better idea of what size to expect in an English Shepherd Mix.
An English Shepherd generally lives for 12-15 years. The other parent breed may affect this slightly, but you should be able to expect a similar life span in an English Shepherd Mix.