Male Vs Female German Shepherds (Which One You Choose)?

Male Vs. Female german shepherds, which sex is going to be right for you and your family? In this article, we’ll take a look at all the variations between the sexes, so you can make an implicated decision when buying your pup. However, both boys and girls are great companions. And at the end of the day, it’s all going to depend on your own needs.

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Male vs Female German Shepherd

Male vs Female German Shepherd

When looking at male vs female german shepherds there are a few things you’re going to need to weigh up. The different sizes, temperaments, aggression levels, and much more need to be taken into account when deciding which sex to go for.

Size Difference

The size difference between the two is probably the first thing you’re going to notice. However, it is important to remember these are just averages. Sometimes there are going to be females that are bigger than males, and males that are smaller than females.

Male Size

  • Males grow between 24-26″ in size by the time they reach adulthood.
  • They’ll weigh between 65-90lbs.

Female Size

  • Females grow between 22-24″ in size by the time they reach adulthood.
  • They’ll generally end up weighing between 50-70lbs

As you can see, male german shepherds are a lot larger and physically more imposing. They are generally more strong and have a more massive head. This makes them ideal for protection as they’re much more really intimidating.

But females aren’t without their strengths either. While they may not look as physically imposing, they’re still going to do a great job of protecting your family.

Though, this isn’t where females truly shine. If you’re interested in dog shows, then a female smaller, lighter size makes them much better suited than males. So if you’re interested in training, females win. But if you’re interested in protection, males take the lead slightly.

Male vs Female German Shepherds: What are the Differences?

Some dog lovers will claim that there are no temperament and behavioral differences between male and female dogs of the same breed. This is true to an extent, as each dog is an individual and will have his or her unique personality. However, some general differences may make a difference when it comes to choosing your dog.

There are a few key differences when it comes to behavior. In general, male dogs are more prone to aggression and becoming sectional. Female dogs tend to be more sensitive and more natural to train.

And while male dogs are often most protective of their territory itself, females tend to be more protective of their family members, including their human pack.

That said, asking any German Shepherd owner might get you slightly different answers. Some owners claim that it’s the male dogs who are more comfortable to train, while females tend to be more aggressive and protective.

The critical thing to consider when selecting dogs for their temperament is that a dog’s upbringing matters much more than sex when it comes to determining attitude.

If you purchase a puppy only to find that your new dog is shy and reserved, don’t be alarmed with care and understanding, you can help even shy puppies become comfortable socializing.

However, if you do end up with a dog who becomes aggressive or overly territorial and can’t solve the issue of aggression on your own, it may be time to enlist the help of a professional.

While German Shepherds are trainable, if they sense you aren’t a calm and confident leader, they may not listen to you. Working with a trainer doesn’t have to be long term or highly expensive.

Many trainers can help you become more confident when working with your dog, and many pet stores and dog clubs offer affordable group handling classes, too.

Male vs Female German GSD What are some of the Physical Differences?

When deciding whether to purchase a male or female German Shepherd, you may also want to take size into account. Just like with many dog breeds, there’s a slight size variance between the adult male and female German Shepherds.

According to the American Kennel Club, makes are usually between 24 and 26 inches tall, while females are between 22 and 24 inches. Males are also between 65 and 90 pounds, while females are normally between 50 and 70 pounds.

The size difference between males and females usually isn’t an issue, although male dogs will often need more food to sustain their larger body size.

However, females tend to be more slender and more agile due to their small size. If you’re looking for a dog who is particularly graceful as if you’re hoping to compete in agility or a similar discipline, a female dog may be the better choice.

Male Vs Female German Shepherds Training

For most people, trainability is one of the most important aspects of their dog. After all, the last thing you need is an unruly pup running your life. Fortunately, german shepherds are one of the most intelligent breeds, so they’re definitely capable of learning. However, which sex is easier to train?

Female German shepherd

  • Female german shepherds mature much earlier than males. This indicates they’re going to be easier to train, and have a competitive edge over males.
  • When a female german shepherd is in heat, however, they can be challenging to train, mainly if other dogs are around.
  • Once again, their small size linked with their early maturity levels means they’re great to train as agility dogs or show dogs.

Male German Shepherd

  • Male german shepherds can often try to be dominant. If you’re not assertive enough, then you may end up having a hard time training them.
  • However, when trained favorably, they’re going to make fantastic guard dogs, protectors, and police dogs.
  • They can also become confused easier than females can, especially when they can smell a female in heat.

Male Vs Female German Shepherd Temperament

This is one of the most critical factors to look at, and obviously, it’s the one with the most information. When you’re selecting your german shepherd, the temperament they have will be an important factor in whether they’re the right fit for your family.

Here are the general temperaments of males and females. Still, remember, this isn’t always the case, and seldom the temperaments can be the other way round.


  • Females are more friendly and have a much more gentle nature. While they can still try to seek dominance, it doesn’t occur as often as it does with males.
  • They also tend to be friendlier towards strangers.
  • While they’re not as protective and regional over places and items, they are protective over people, especially they’re family. So if you want your german shepherd to look after your whole family, then females are generally better.
  • They’ll also love your whole family. While they still tend to bond strongly with one person, it’s not nearly as strong as with males.
  • Females tend to be more loving towards children as well.
  • However, unless spayed, you can expect a female to come into heat twice a year.


  • Males are much prouder and have a more aggressive personality. If you don’t show strong leadership, they’re more likely to try and become the leader.
  • They also tend to be more aloof and wary of strangers. Unlike other dogs who will jump at the chance to meet new visitors, male german shepherds often hold back a little bit.
  • Male german shepherds tend to be more protective over areas and items. They urinate to mark their area, and can often bark and growl if they think someone or something is in their territory.
  • Often times, they’ll bond with one person have an extremely strong connection with them. This is usually the person that feeds, trains and walks them

Are There Differences in Health Issues Between Male and Female German Shepherds?

Are There Differences in Health Issues Between Male and Female German Shepherds?

For the development of the German Shepherd, this breed has become predisposed to several genetic conditions. And according to the Mid-Atlantic German Shepherd Rescue, the fact that most of these issues are genetic means they may also be present in German Shepherd mixes.

These health issues do not appear to be more common in female vs. male German Shepherds. However, if you are hoping to find a German Shepherd for your next dog, it’s useful to know about some of these common issues:


Many dig breeds with broad chests, including the German Shepherd, are very prone to bloating. This is similar to colic in horses bloat happens when there’s a buildup of excess gas in the digestive tract, and the dog isn’t able to expel it.

If bloat is severe, most dogs will need surgery to survive. However, there are some steps you can take to reduce the risk of bloat. Try to stop your dog from eating too quickly, and avoid allowing your dog to drink large amounts of water right before eating.

Additionally, one crucial way to prevent bloat is not to let your dog engage in rigorous exercise one hour before or two hours after eating. Walking is ok, but avoid playing fetch or allowing your dog to run through these times.

Hip and Elbow Dysplasia

These issues, especially hip dysplasia, are common in medium and large dogs, although the German Shepherd is especially prone. These issues result from a joint malformation that can cause training and running to be painful.

Since hip and elbow dysplasia are mostly genetic, there are ways to reduce the risk of buying a dog who will develop one of these diseases. The Orthopedic Foundation for Animals offers a way for breeders to certify their dogs.

To be certified, a dog is X-rayed and given a rating by the OFA. If you are buying from a breeder, you may want to ask about whether any of their breeding stock animals have been OFA certified

Degenerative Myelopathy

This disease is effectively the canine version of multiple sclerosis. However, German Shepherds are the only dog breed to be affected by degenerative myelopathy (DM) frequently.

This disease affects the spinal cord, and it gradually limits movement. Currently, the only treatments are supportive, and there, sadly, is no cure.


This seizure disorder occurs in different dog breeds, and German Shepherds seem to be especially prone. The good news is that it’s usually very treatable with anti-convulsant medications, which are not often costly.

Pancreatic Enzyme Insufficiency

This is a rare condition that seems only to impact German Shepherds. Dogs with this condition don’t produce the pancreatic enzymes needed to digest dog food properly.

This condition will often cause diarrhea and severe weight loss. And while the diagnosis might sound like a grim one, this deficiency can be treated with an enzyme supplement.

This supplement needs to be mixed in each time you feed your dog, but it will help your dog lead a long, happy life. While some of these issues can be tested for, others cannot.

To be a responsible German Shepherd owner, be sure to stay vigilant for signs of significant problems like the ones listed above. If your dog does have one of these diagnoses, your veterinarian can help you develop a treatment or management plan.

Where Can You Find Your German Shepherd?

If you feel ready to start looking at German Shepherd puppies or adult dogs, it can be helpful to know where to look.

The good news is that, given this breed’s popularity, it’s relatively easy to find dogs of all ages. Here are some places to start:

Breed-specific rescues

If you’re someone who wants a purebred dog but doesn’t necessarily want to go to a breeder, a breed-specific rescue offers another option. These rescues take in both puppies and adult dogs, and many also take in German Shepherd mixes. In some cases, these dogs may have papers, but it’s unlikely that all of them will.

Animal Shelters

Since German Shepherds are a very popular breed, your chances of finding one at a regular animal shelter are fairly high. That said, not every purebred in a shelter will still have papers.


If you would prefer a purebred with papers, going through a breeder maybe your best option. If you’re interested in showing your dog, make sure that the parents are AKC registered and that your dog will come with papers.

Male Or Female For First Time Pet Owners?

Honestly, if you’re just a casual owner who loves german shepherds, then I’d personally recommend getting females. For the most part, they tend to be easier to train and more helpful.

They’ll love you and your whole family equally, and less vigorous over toys, etc. However, if you live alone or you’re willing to put the time in, then males can be a great choice. Most importantly, both males and females are going to be hugely rewarding

Male Vs Female German Shepherd Which One Live Longer?

On average, female German Shepherds are going to live longer than males. If you’re going to get a female you can expect her to live for just over 11 years (on average), whereas males live for just under 10 years on average. Once again though, it’s important for you to take into account the breeder that you purchase them from. If they have a bad start in life, they will most likely have a lower lifespan.

How Fast Can a German Shepherd Run

30 mph German Shepherd Running Speed. German Shepherds were initially used as herding dogs. Today, they’re commonly used as service and police dogs in the United States due to their size and quick running speeds.

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