Many dogs are good as family and companion dogs. However, some dogs stand out as being the hard workers of the dog world.
German Shepherds have been used as police, war, and guide dogs, and the Alaskan Malamutes are great as a pack, hunting, pulling, and weight dogs. These two breeds are two clear examples of working dogs. When you mix them, you get a dog that needs a lot of training and discipline but can work hard when given a task.
If you are looking for a hard-working dog that is loving but also independent, then the Alaskan Shepherd might be for you.
They are dogs that require a lot of work and training. Families might not benefit from a dog like this, but for people that want a dog that does great in a pack and occasionally wants love, The Alaskan Shepherd is a good choice.
Read on to learn the similarities and differences between Alaskan Malamutes, German Shepherds, and how it mixes within their offspring. By the end of the article, you should have a better understanding of the breeds.
Alaskan Malamute, German Shepherd, and the Alaskan Shepherd
|Alaskan Malamute||Alaskan Shepherd||German Shepherd|
|Height||23-25 inches||22-25 inches||22-26 inches|
|Weight||75-85 pounds||60-85 pounds||50-90 pounds|
|Life Expectancy||10-14 years||10-13 years||7-10 years|
|Colors||Agouti and white Black and white Blue and white Gray and white Red and white Sable and white Seal and white Silver and white White||Gray and white Red and white Black and cream Brown and white Black and white Sable and white Silver and white Blue and white||Black Black and cream Black and red Black and silver Black and tan Blue Gray Liver Sable White Bi-color|
|Coat Type||Thick double coat with medium length||Thick double coat with medium length||Double coat with medium length|
|Affection levels||Loving||Loving||Very loving|
|Shedding Level||Sheds a fair amount||Sheds a lot||Sheds a lot|
|Temperament||Playful Pretty protective||Playful Pretty protective||Pretty playful Very protective|
|Health Issues||Thrombopathia Elbow dysplasia Hip dysplasia Dwarfism Hypothyroidism Inherited polyneuropathy von Willebrand’s disease||Hip dysplasia Chondrodysplasia Degenerative myelopathy Congenital Heart Defects||Bloat Elbow dysplasia Hip dysplasia|
|Trainability||Very easy to train||Easy to train||Easy to train|
|Exercise||Lots of exercise||Lots of exercise||Lots of Exercise|
|Friendliness to People||Somewhat open to strangers||Somewhat open to strangers||Somewhat open to strangers|
|Friendliness to Dogs||Somewhat okay with other dogs||Somewhat okay with dogs||Somewhat okay with other dogs|
|Drooling Levels||Little to no drool||May drool a little||May drool a little|
|Mental Stimulation||Moderate mental stimulation||Lots of mental stimulation||Lots of mental stimulation|
|Barking Level||Average barking||Average barking||Average barking|
About Alaskan Malamute
Alaskan Malamutes are characterized by their ears that stand straight up, their big-boned appearance, and fluffy fur, especially on their curved tails. They are hardworking spitz-type dogs that stand at up to 25 inches and weigh anywhere between 75 and 85 pounds.
With a long history as one of the oldest sled dog breeds in the Arctic, Alaskan Malamutes are believed to be directly descended from domesticated wolf-dogs that accompanied hunters around 4,00 years ago.
Their build lends to their work as sled dogs, pulling heavy loads at low speeds across long distances. A singule Malamute can pull anywhere between 1,100 and 3,300 pounds (500-1,500 kg). This contrasts with their close relative, the Siberian Husky, which pulls light loads at higher speeds.
While they can be affectionate dogs, they are very much pack animals with stubborn and independent personalities. Firm and consistent training must be given when they are a puppy to ensure that you remain as the leader of the pack; otherwise, the owner can become the owned.
About German Shepherds
German Shepherds are great dogs if you are looking for a loyal, protective, and loving dog. They are very smart and can be used as guide dogs and police dogs in modern times. In history, they even shaped the outcomes of the wars. It was actually during these wars that their skills for being a guide dog came to light.
German Shepherds came around in the late 1800s. They were bred as sheep herding dogs but quickly expanded to many other services.
They are also known as Alsatians in Germany, which roughly translates to herding dogs, thanks to their original purpose. They were renamed temporarily after the Second World War, as many thought their name would harm their popularity.
German Shepherds come in various colors, usually in some shade of brown and black, although solid colors are possible as well. They are somewhere between 22 to 26 inches tall and are often between 50 to 90 pounds, which puts them between a medium to large dog.
About The Alaskan Shepherd Dog Mix
Despite being a crossbreed of some of the most popular dogs in the United States, Alaskan Shepherds are few and far between and not officially recognized by the American Kennel Club. They are thought to have been bred since the early 1900s due to the long history of both parent breeds.
Are Alaskan Shepherds Good Dogs For First-Time Dog Owners?
These fluffy dogs tend to inherit more characteristics from their Alaskan Malamute parents. However, thanks to their German Shepherd DNA, they are also highly intelligent, and combined with the aloof, independent nature of Alaskan Malamutes, you can get stubborn dogs.
They must be trained and receive mental exercise consistently from a young age so that the owner remains in control. For these reasons, they are not recommended for first-time dog owners.
These dogs also do best in a pack and aren’t good without their family or other dogs present. They are loud barkers and very noisy. Alaskan Shepherds can also be eager to allow their teeth to talk for them, and require early training to prevent frequent nipping.
What Tasks are Alaskan Shepherds Suited For?
Alaskan Shepherds are suited for quite a few tasks. Thanks to their intelligence and the patience of their German Shepherd parent, they are patient and make excellent guides and service dogs.
If they lean more towards an Alaskan Malamute, they can be great for pulling heavy loads over a long distance. Due to their vocal nature and protectiveness, they are excellent guard dogs. Some owners suggest that they can be great boat dogs as they have a lot of endurance for long swims.
Search-and-rescue is also a great job to give an Alaskan Shepherd. They are quick, have long endurance, are focused, and eager to please. All of these qualities mean they will work fast and for long times while searching for people, even in cold places.
Alaskan Shepherds are not dogs designed to be loving family dogs. They are loving and can be great with families, but first, they need proper discipline, training, and a pack leader that will guide them.
They are easily bored and tend to prefer being in a pack to being a sole dog. This breed will be very affectionate to their owner, but will also work hard at any task given to them. They can be eerily smart and can be a pain if they get too bored.
It is recommended that these dogs be primarily used for work, such as sled pulling, protecting, policing, or arctic hunting.