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Rhodesian German Mix: Info, Pictures, Care Guide & Traits

Written by: Visnja Radosavljevic

Last Updated on July 7, 2024 by Dogster Team

close up of a rhodesian ridgeback german shepherd mixed breed dog

Rhodesian German Mix: Info, Pictures, Care Guide & Traits

If you are a dog enthusiast, you know that there are numerous unique dog breeds available throughout the world. One dog that stands out from the crowd is the Rhodesian Ridgeback and German Shepherd Mix, also known as the Rhodesian Shepherd.

These dogs are active, athletic, loyal, and playful, making them a perfect addition to any active family that likes to spend time outside. However, these dogs can also be tricky to care for, so it’s crucial to know more about them before getting one as a pet.

Breed Overview


23–27 inches


65–95 pounds


9–12 years


Sable, fawn, tan, black

Suitable for:

Active families, people with previous experience with dogs, canine sports enthusiasts


Loyal and loving, intelligent, dignified, watchful, protective

The Rhodesian German is a mix of two purebred dogs: the Rhodesian Ridgeback and the German Shepherd. Due to the nature of their parents, these dogs are often active, silly, and playful, and they love running, playing outside, and doing all kinds of fun activities with their families. However, these dogs can often be too much for first-time dog owners.

Read on to discover more about this fascinating dog breed and learn if they would be a suitable pet choice for you and your family.

Rhodesian German Mix Characteristics

High-energy dogs will need a lot of mental and physical stimulation to stay happy and healthy, while low-energy dogs require minimal physical activity. It’s important when choosing a dog to make sure their energy levels match your lifestyle or vice versa.
Easy-to-train dogs are more skilled at learning prompts and actions quickly with minimal training. Dogs that are harder to train will require a bit more patience and practice.
Some breeds, due to their size or their breeds potential genetic health issues, have shorter lifespans than others. Proper exercise, nutrition, and hygiene also play an important role in the lifespan of your pet.
Some dog breeds are prone to certain genetic health problems, and some more than others. This doesn’t mean that every dog will have these issues, but they have an increased risk, so it’s important to understand and prepare for any additional needs they may require.
Some dog breeds are more social than others, both towards humans and other dogs. More social dogs have a tendency to run up to strangers for pets and scratches, while less social dogs shy away and are more cautious, even potentially aggressive. No matter the breed, it’s important to socialize your dog and expose them to lots of different situations.

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Rhodesian German Mix Puppies

These puppies are playful, smart, and loving. During their puppy stage, Rhodesian German Mix dogs can be a bit mischievous, so it’s important to start training and socializing them from a young age. This period is crucial for the proper mental and physical development of any puppy, so be sure to offer them plenty of attention.

These puppies are adorable but can often be a handful, so be ready for the responsibility before getting one!

Parent breeds of the Rhodesian German Mix
Image By: Left – Osetrik, Shutterstock | Right – Osetrik, Shutterstock

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Temperament & Intelligence of the Rhodesian German Mix

Are These Dogs Good for Families?

The Rhodesian German Mix is an excellent dog for families as both parent breeds are social and family-friendly. These dogs are loving, affectionate, and family oriented, meaning they can easily fit into any household, even those with small children.

These canines have a watchful, protective nature, so they’ll be sure to keep your kids engaged and safe.

Does This Breed Get Along With Other Pets?

Most of the time, Rhodesian German Mix dogs are not too fond of other animals, though they can generally be friendly and learn to get along with other dogs and cats if properly socialized from a young age.

Still, these dogs are not overly eager about company, which is why they might not be the most suitable pets for people who already live in multi-pet households.

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Things to Know When Owning a Rhodesian German Mix

Food & Diet Requirements

Rhodesian German Mix dogs are active and athletic, which is why they need a high-quality, well-balanced diet to properly develop and thrive. The main nutrient in their diets should be protein, followed by fats, carbohydrates, vitamins, and minerals.

Overall, it’s best to offer these dogs store-bought dog food that’s appropriate for their life stage. You can also speak with your veterinarian to get a personalized meal plan created specifically for your Rhodesian German Mix canine.

Exercise & Training

Rhodesian German Mix dogs are athletic, outgoing, and energetic, which is why they require plenty of mental and physical stimulation. That said, your canine should get at least 1 hour of exercise per day, though they can benefit from even more daily exercise.

Since this canine has a playful personality, your exercise sessions can include playing, walking, running, hiking, and all kinds of fun activities that will strengthen your and your dog’s bond and keep your canine motivated and in good shape. These dogs usually excel at agility, which is why they can be great at canine sports activities that could also cherish their competitive spirit.

When it comes to this breed’s training needs, you should start when they are 8 weeks old. The training should include all kinds of techniques, from obedience and potty training to crate training and socialization.

Regardless of which session starts first, it’s important to have patience and practice positive reinforcement. This will strengthen your bond and help your dog learn the commands more easily.

close up of a male rhodesian ridgeback german shepherd mixed breed dog
Image Credit: Rexjaymes, Shutterstock

Grooming ✂️

Although it depends on the type of coat that a Rhodesian German Mix dog has, they are usually a moderate shedder that requires weekly brushing. Rhodesian German Mix dogs with thick coats may need more frequent brushing.

These dogs require regular bathing and drying, and it’s also necessary to trim their nails every 3–4 weeks to keep them in good shape.

Health and Conditions

The Rhodesian German Mix is generally considered a healthy breed and has a long lifespan of 9–12 years. While there’s no particular data on these canines and their health, due to genetics, these canines are prone to the same health conditions as their parent breeds.

Minor Conditions
  • Bloat
  • Allergies
Serious Conditions
  • Degenerative myelopathy
  • Exocrine pancreatic insufficiency
  • Hyperthyroidism
  • Juvenile myoclonic epilepsy
  • Pannus
  • Elbow and hip dysplasia
  • Heart disease
  • Cancer
  • Hemophilia

Male vs. Female

The only difference between male and female Rhodesian German Mix dogs is their size. Most males are larger and heavier than females.

Otherwise, these sexes are practically the same, so it all comes down to your personal preferences.

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3 Little-Known Facts About the Rhodesian German Mix

1. These Dogs Can Be Challenging for First-Time Dog Owners

If you’ve never had a dog before and you are considering getting a Rhodesian German Mix dog, know that these dogs can be challenging for first-time dog owners.

This extremely intelligent and active breed requires someone with experience to handle them. Without a proper leader, these dogs can become mischievous and often too dominant and stop obeying you, which could cause problems in your household.

Therefore, it’s best to look for other, easier-to-handle breeds if you don’t have prior experience with dogs.

2. These Dogs Are Extremely Outgoing

Rhodesian German Mix dogs are extremely outgoing and active, which is why they require like-minded humans. These dogs may not be suitable for individuals who are introverted and like to spend time at home.

These dogs are the happiest when running around and playing outside, which is why they need active and energetic owners who will be ready to spend energy with them and match their vibrant personalities.

3. These Dogs Are Prone to Separation Anxiety

The Rhodesian German Mix is an independent dog breed, but these canines tend to get attached to their human companions, which is why they are prone to separation anxiety. This problem usually occurs when you leave your dog alone for long periods of time. Therefore, it’s always a good idea to have a pet sitter while you’re not around to prevent possible accidents and reduce your dog’s stress.

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Final Thoughts

A Rhodesian Ridgeback and a German Shepherd can create the stunning breed known as the Rhodesian German Mix. These canines are playful, energetic, friendly, and family-oriented, which is why they can make great pets for anyone ready to provide them with happy, active, and playful lives.

Keep in mind that these dogs require a firm yet gentle owner, which is why they might be unsuitable for people without past experience in handling dogs.

Related Reads:

Featured Image Credit: jen mccormack, Shutterstock

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