Super smart, totally handsome, and ready to take on any task or trick you toss their way, these German shepherd hybrid breeds are great dogs for active people.

Noble, confident, loyal, and gentle are just a few ways to describe wonderful German shepherds. Whether they're courageous K-9s or making unlikely friendships with other creatures, German shepherds continue to be one of the most popular dogs in the U.S. 

In fact, they consistently rank in the top five favorite breeds, and there are many reasons why. Individuals and families alike appreciate qualities such as: 

These characteristics also make them top choices for crossbreeding. But before you set your pet-loving sights on a particular German shepherd mix, keep a few key things in mind.  

Shollie with German Shepherd markings
Credit: Courtesy of Bedandbreakfastacademy / Instagram

Choose a German Shepherd Mixed Breed Carefully

Patrick Singletary, DVM, owns Good Dog Veterinary Care in Marietta, Ga. He says it should take months to research and vet a breeder. "This is especially true for hybrid breeds because they're in such high demand," he says. "High consumer demand leads to more breeders getting into the game or higher prices."

Singletary adds that responsible dog owners doing quality research into their new furry family members also help reduce the prevalence of puppy mills, which are unfortunately where many hybrid breeds originate. 

Make sure to keep the health of both pup's parents in mind, too. For example, the American Kennel Club indicates German shepherds usually live 12–14 years and while relatively healthy, still might have issues with elbow and hip dysplasia and bloat.

Although there's no guarantee a mixed breed puppy will have all the most desirable traits from both dog parents (we only need to look into our own family trees for that confirmation!) choosing one of the pooches below still gives you an opportunity to love a special creature. Who you callin' mutt, mister?

Shepadoodle (German Shepherd Poodle Mix)

Shepadoodle, furry with German markings
Two Shepadoodles on a dock showing a German Shepherd body
Left: Shepadoodle puppies need lots of socialization and training to grow into polite dogs. | Credit: Courtesy of Our Traveling Tails / Instagram
Right: Poodles were bred to retrieve birds for hunters, often from water. Your shepadoodle might inherit this love for swimming. | Credit: Courtesy of Rollothevikingnotthecandy / Instagram

Standard poodles are terrific hybrid buddies with German shepherds because they're relatively hypoallergenic (as much as any dog can be, anyway!), often have equally calm personalities, and can match an active pet parent step for step! What type of fur your shepadoodle might have is a total toss-up, though—curly, shaggy, wiry, who knows?

Golden Shepherd (German Shepherd Golden Retriever Mix)

black golden
fuzzy golden shepherd
Left: Golden shepherds love their humans and always want to be by their side (or at their feet!). | Credit: Courtesy of Anastasia_Gryffin / Instagram
Right: Clever and curious golden shepherds need an active family that can devote lots of time to exercise and mental stimulation. | Credit: Courtesy of Bonnie Upright / Instagram

Since there are three types of golden retrievers, a German shepherd and golden retriever mix might have a wide range of attractive color and fur textures. However, the golden retriever's consistently sweet nature and ability to get along with just about everyone means your golden shepherd will likely be a smart, devoted, and energetic family dog.

Gerberian Shepsky (German Shepherd Husky Mix)

Gerberian Shepsky with husky eyes
Gerberian Shepsky with German Shepherd ears
Left: Wanting to create a blue-eyed German shepherd could have been a reason the two breeds were first crossed. | Credit: Courtesy of Maverick_the_shepsky / Instagram
Right: Credit: Courtesy of Foxtheshepsky / Instagram

With an unusual name and funky ears, a Geberian shepsky pup often shares the outgoing and talkative traits of his Siberian husky parent, with a little 'velcro dog' thrown in for extra furry, persistent snuggles! Keep in mind both breeds also have double coats, so the chance for 'blowing coat' is 100 percent! Stock up on grooming supplies!

Sheprador (German Shepherd Labrador Retriever Mix)

Black Sheprador
Sheprador with golden lab color
Left: Credit: Courtesy of Kyzersayswoof / Instagram
Right: Credit: Courtesy of Themokapup / Instagram

A German shepherd and Lab mix puppy is guaranteed to be one smart cookie! Labrador retrievers are eager to have jobs to do, just like German shepherds, and love being outdoors, so you'll be able to train your sheprador to do just about anything! Good-natured, easy-going, and lovable, this pup is bound to be a special companion.

Australian German Shepherd (German Shepherd Australian Shepherd Mix)

Australian German Shepherd, more Aussie brindle
Australian German Shepherd, more German Shepherd
Left: Credit: Courtesy of Cc dogz / Instagram
Right: Credit: Courtesy of Odinthegermanaussie / Instagram

Without a doubt, a German shepherd and Australian shepherd mix will probably be one of the most intelligent dogs you've ever met! Affectionate, quick-footed, able to learn cues in an instant, plus a double-dose of inherited herding skills? This means you'll have a trusted and dedicated mixed breed guardian for family and livestock alike.

Shollie (German Shepherd Collie Mix)

Shollie with German Shepherd markings
Shollie with Collie markings
Left: Credit: Courtesy of Bedandbreakfastacademy / Instagram
Right: Credit: Courtesy of Kalithesholliedog / Instagram

Looks aren't everything, but wow, shollies are sure Instagram-worthy! Collies also have gorgeous coats that need regular brushing, so your shollie might, too. More often than not, the attentive and faithful characteristics of the collie and the German shepherd shine in their offspring, so if you're hoping for a beloved children's pet pal, she might be it.

Corman Shepherd (German Shepherd Corgi Mix)

Corman Shepherd with Corgi body and face
Credit: Courtesy of islathecorman / Instagram

For a doggo who responds well to enrichment activities, looooves to play, and is an instant charmer, you can't go wrong with a corman shepherd! But which corgi will you choose: the Cardigan Welsh (with a long tail!) or the Pembroke Welsh (with a bobbed tail!)? When paired with a shepherd, both breeds are lively and bright.

Border Collie German Shepherd Mix

Border Collie German Shepherd mix with Border Collie body and German Shepherd markings
Credit: Courtesy of Beau.n.atlas / Instagram

With this particular mix, you'll have a beautiful, high-energy, and instinctive pup to enjoy! Working group border collies frequently earn top marks in agility and trick-performing competitions, so with a few shepherd genes sprinkled in, you'll be astounded at how much your new dog wants to do and learn! He's a great running and hiking buddy, too.

German Shepherd Beagle Mix

German Shepherd Beagle mix with Beagle markings and German Shepherd size
Credit: Courtesy of Codyypawss / Instagram

Awwww! Here's a bundle of cuddliness for sure! Beagles are prized for being terrific with kids, so this loving addition to your family might share a few German shepherd traits, too, such as steadfastness, an eagerness to run and play, and the ability to respond well to consistent training. Try scent work with them—they're a natural at it!

Shepkita (German Shepherd Akita Mix)

Shepkita with curly Akita tail
Credit: Courtesy of Pumpkin the prodigious / Instagram

Fiercely loyal, Akitas share this characteristic with German shepherds, so while they might not take to strangers well at first, they'll always stand right by their pet parents. If you want just one beloved pet (with deep brown eyes!) to focus your attention on, the quiet, independent, and often fluffy-coated shepkita will appreciate all the training and love you have.