The miniature German Shepherd is many times, marketed as being just a smaller version of its relative, the German Shepherd, but it in fact, it is only part German Shepherd. Miniature German Shepherds are a cross between two different, full-breeds, the German Shepherd and either a Poodle or a Border Collie. The miniature German Shepherd is just bigger than a lap dog but can have all the looks of, and features of a full-sized German Shepherd, but how much alike are they really? Keep reading to find out seven things you didn’t know about the miniature German Shepherd.
1. Dwarfism not the same as miniature
Like with humans, dogs can be born with birth defects. If a puppy is born with dwarfism, this is not the same as a miniature version of the breed, no matter what the breeder may tell you. While they are smaller than their siblings, they have a medical condition that will require more medical care and checks and the buyer should be told this so they can be prepared. A dog born with dwarfism should not be bred in an effort to continue this genetic defect, purposefully trying to produce small dogs.
2. Looks and features
Because the miniature German Shepherd is a cross between two different breeds, there is no guarantee that the final product will be a dog that looks strictly like a German Shepherd dog, only smaller. There is always the chance that the puppies could inherit more traits of the secondary breed and look like its parent with only few features of the GSD.
3. Not AKC registered
Because the miniature German Shepherd dog is a hybrid breed, it is not a recognized AKC breed and should not expect that they will get any AKC registered papers with their miniature German Shepherd. If a breeder tries to tell you that they are an AKC registered breed, you should find another breeder because they are not being honest and should not be considered reputable.
Breeding two different breeds can produce a variety of characteristics and features in the offspring. It is hard to determine what to expect with a hybrid and this goes for a puppy’s temperament as well as physical features. While a regular GSD will have certain characteristics and features that are typical from one family lineage to another, a hybrid, miniature German Shepherd puppy can inherit the worst behavioral traits from both sides, the best behavioral traits from both, or a combination of the two. You will want to start training and socializing your puppy right away to help instill good behavior in your dog and get the best outcome possible.
5. Training may be more difficult
German Shepherd dogs are known for their intelligence, loyalty and obedience. While miniature German Shepherd dogs can follow in the same footprints of their cousins, it is also true that your puppy may inherit the traits of its secondary breed, whether it be a stubborn streak or slow learning trait. People expecting that their miniature German Shepherd dog will be the same type of learners as the full breed GSD, should be aware and prepared.
6. Health issues
Miniature German Shepherds do have the risk of health issues, like any breed, however, because it is a mix, it is harder to tell exactly what all of them would be. When two different breeds are involved, it is difficult to know what they will inherit from either side. It is possible they can be healthier than a full breed, but it is also possible they could inherit the worst health issues from both sides. You should be aware that you may not know what your miniature GSD will be at risk for, until a problem arises.
How much you pay for a miniature German Shepherd will depend on the breeder, but some breeders will charge a high price for a MGSD because of the novelty of them. If you are thinking about this breed as a pet, you should shop around to find a reputable breeder and one who isn’t just trying to cash-in on the “miniature” aspect of the breed and charge outrageous prices for their puppies.