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Posted by: Chow Shepard | 2013/06/27

German Shepard Chow Chow mix temperment

Hi there We just got a German Shepard cross chow chow Mom is an all white German Shepard, Dad is a Cinnamon coloured pure bred Chow Chow. Our puppy came out pure black (Apparently the daddy dogs daddy was a black chow chow) I was wondering is this breed going to be more aggressive than most? Everyone is telling us we made a mistake getting him because we have a 2 year old toddler and they say this dog is agressive and attacks unprovoked and is bad with kids?! He is 8 weeks and we are taking him to puppy school as of next week. I am a firm beleiver in dog pack mentality and I have been training the dog already to respect us by letting us walk through doors, letting us all eat first, not jumping up, taking food with soft mouth etc. and he has been such a wonderful, quick learning and gentle little thing. Is there anything I should know about this breed? Is it agressive? Can I train it not to be?

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberVet
- 2013/07/08

In the past we were very quick to stereotype dogs according to their breed as the genetic lines used in breeding were fairly limited resulting in rather predictable outcomes. These days we have a much wider genetic pool to breed from allowing greater diversity in the traits produced in each breed line. It is therefore not as easy to predict a dog’s behaviour based on its breed – and this applies to both a dogs positive and negative behavioural traits. If you do want to get an idea as to your puppy’s genetic tendency towards aggression it is best to look at the temperaments’ of its immediate parents rather than the breed in general.

It is important to note however that genetics are only partially responsible for a dog’s temperament. The way your puppy is reared during the first few months of his life will have great impact on his adult temperament, and as the puppy’s owner, this responsibility falls on your shoulders.

A well run puppy school is an excellent place to start as it will encourage your puppy to become familiar and comfortable around different people, animals and situations, and so I am glad you have enrolled him in one. I would suggest that in addition to this you ask your vet to refer you to a behaviourist. A behaviourist will give you practical advice on how to manage the interactions between your toddler and puppy, how to avoid negative situations from arising, and how to best ensure the relationship between the two of them has maximum chance of success.

The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.

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Our users say:
Posted by: Anonymous | 2016/02/13

I just adopted a Shepard chow mix unbeknownst to me until I picked him up, he is only five months old. I have a two year old English lab who is not a retailiting dog. The puppy is already trying to dominate as well as protective of his toys and treats. I have owned Rottweilers previously and the last thing I want is an agreesive dog. He listens well and is very playful with my lab, I just would like some advise about him from any experiences. Thank you,

Reply to Anonymous
Posted by: Nancy | 2015/11/22

I had a chow Shepard mix and she passed away this past July. Her name suited her perfectly "Honey". She was the best companion I have ever had. Great with kids and very protective. Yet extremely loving and loyal. This isn't a day go by that I miss my girl and wish she was still will me. I am currently looking for another companion with the same mix. I will never own anything else. So perfect!

Reply to Nancy | 3 comments (hide)
Posted by: Christina | 2016/04/01

We are currently caring for my father-in-law's chow mix at our home. I have three older kids, and a small dog. Despite being a rescue dog to begin with, and living through a home fire and losing an owner in that fire (my mother-in-law), this dog is sweet, submissive, and attached at the hip to me. He is sweet and tolerant of my kids, and is submissive to my tiny dog with the big attitude. He learned how to use the dog door very quickly, and is very receptive to additional training. He is an amazing dog and we are happy to have him. As others have said, individual dog personality extends far beyond breed stereotypes.

Posted by: hewasmybestie | 2016/03/24

I know this is a post with a bit of age on it but I'd have to agree with Nancy, I was lucky enough to adopt a Chow Shepherd at about 5 weeks old. He was indeed my best friend and my baby he passed away after 14 years, his name was Diamond. I always assumed he was FAR to intelligent for his own good. He did so many things that were unlike any other dog that I'd ever seen. He spoiled me and now that he's gone there will NEVER be another to replace him, he left me with a broken heart.

Posted by: Jennie | 2016/01/15

Hi Nancy so sorry to read about Honey, i adopted what i thought was a sheperd x rottie now turns out to be sheperdx chow. I now worried because since i've had Beau he's been agressive with other dogs, i just read it could be the chow bit in him, please can you help? thank-you.

Posted by: Marissa | 2014/07/13

Hi, when I was 2 my mom rescued a german shepherd chow chow mix. She was an amazing escape artist. When she got to big for our house she would wonder our yard and when she would get out she would go say hi to neighbors or walk to a close jack in the box. At night she would come back and sleep. She was very loyal and protective of our family, some might even say territorial of her property. As in if we had company over and she didn't know them she would need to be introduced. And if she saw us hug them she would be fine. Fantastic guard dog. She was about 1 year when we rescued her. She lived till she was 14 years old and was my best friend. She would do anything for us and was an amazing dog. We didn't take her to training school, but she was pretty easy to train on our own.

Reply to Marissa | 1 comment (hide)
Posted by: Marissa | 2014/07/13

Sorry forgot to mention I am now 20 years old

Posted by: Ray | 2014/07/06

I have a Chow/Shepherd mix dog that will be 9 years old coming Jan.2015. She was born Jan 1,2006 I have had her since she was 8 weeks old. She is the sweetest dog I know. She is very smart,she obeys commands,I never have to repeat myself when giving her commands.She loves to play with everybody and anybody. She knows how to do several tricks,such as "High 5",say "I love you",roll over,"creep toward me" on the floor and much more. I am legally blind and she saved me a few years ago when I fell into a pond.She came running and jumped in after me.She helped pulled me out. She is very alert and protective of me and her home and at times appears scary to others,but she is in fact gets more scared herself when being chased by a stranger or other dog. I have had another Chow/Shepherd mix before in the 1980's and never had a better dog than this breed. It took me a long time to find another dog like the one I have now. I believe these are the much better breeds if you ask me.

Reply to Ray
Posted by: Anonymous | 2014/05/01

Recently got a female shepherd/chow mix from a pound. She'd been living in a cage for almost a year. She is a sweetheart. Very intelligent, playful, loving and mischievous. We've been taking her to doggie school and she quickly rose to the top of the class--learns her commands very quickly and LOVES to practice her lesson. She makes up her own games and, when we are done playing, tries to crawl in my lap to cuddle. So . . . based on what I have read on the internet, and my experience with our rescue dog, given an affectionate but firm household, lots of exercise and play, and consistent training and expectations, a shepherd/chow mix can be a delightful family dog.

Reply to Anonymous | 1 comment (hide)
Posted by: Anonymous | 2015/04/08

My Daisy was the best dog I have ever had just lost her. She was 9 yrs old when she past on. She was the smartest dog I have ever seen not just cause she was mine but that she only had to be shown something one time. She never tore up anything best temperament, give her a stuff toy and she would keep it until the threads would rot and never tare it up. Tell her to not touch something she would leave it alone. She is missed dearly by everyone that was around her. She had a pup that was with her for almost 8 yrs missing just one day together and she is lost without her momma. But to get back to the subject when I get another dog it will be a Solid Black Shepherd/Chow mix they are the best....

Posted by: Anonymous | 2014/02/09

I have a 10-year old German Shepherd Chow mix and he is the sweetest dog in the whole world and he absolutely loves kids and all people. The only problem I have had is he is very aggressive toward other dogs but only when he is on the leash. He is very protective and I think that is part of it. When he was a puppy we took him to dog parks and he played well with others but as he got older he got aggressive toward other dogs. Very much the Alpha dog though so I don't think I would consider having two dogs at the same time with him. BTW we had two cats and he got along great with cats too.

Reply to Anonymous | 1 comment (hide)
Posted by: Anonymous | 2016/04/09

I know your comment is like 2 years old but thank goodness I read it as we just adopted onegoing to fetch him tomorrow and I have 3 cats and A almost 3 year old daughter so was A bit worried abt my cats but now relieved. The pup is now 9 weeks old and I cant think of a suitable name for him yet hahaha

Posted by: Anonymous | 2014/02/09

I have a 10-year old German Shepherd Chow mix and he is the sweetest dog in the whole world and he absolutely loves kids and all people. The only problem I have had is he is very aggressive toward other dogs but only when he is on the leash. He is very protective and I think that is part of it. When he was a puppy we took him to dog parks and he played well with others but as he got older he got aggressive toward other dogs. Very much the Alpha dog though so I don't think I would consider having two dogs at the same time with him. BTW we had two cats and he got along great with cats too.

Reply to Anonymous
Posted by: Michelle | 2014/01/30

I have a 10 year old Chow Shepherd mix who is the sweetest thing ever. Has never been aggressive to any of my kids. I can take food out of his mouth and he will let me. He is protective in that he barks if someone new is in our house, but quickly warms up as soon as we tell him no or if we stand next to the person. He's very intelligent.

Reply to Michelle
Posted by: Anonymous | 2013/10/05

Hi Ive 2 chowxGerman Shepard kids. They are just amazing. People orientated and will guard you and your loved ones. Both 10 years and Im looking to bring another one into our pack.

Reply to Anonymous
Posted by: Lily | 2013/08/06

I have had both chows and german shepherds and neither one have been aggressive. I do believe the way they are raised has a lot to do with this. We are all strong willed in our family and the dogs know we are the pack leaders. My dogs have never shown aggression to anyone - the chow once nipped me when I took a piece of meat he wasn't eating away from him without thinking, which I believe was my fault. He was VERY apologetic afterwards and I only did it because he and the german shepherd sometimes had leadership issues and I didn't want then to fight. The german shepherd died aged 12 and the chow is now the leader. They are wonderful animals and just need a firm and loving hand. You need to be firm but kind. I believe if you treat the mixed breed well and raise it with boundaries, you will be fine. As PetHealthCare said, never leave a small child unattended with dogs - accidents can happen and it's better to be safe than sorry. Have a look at the website www.chowchow.org - they have a lot of interesting information on chows and chow crosses. Best wishes with your dog.

Reply to Lily
Posted by: PetHealthCare | 2013/07/02

Hi there The temperament of a puppy is influenced by many factors. Genetics (type of breed) and the upbringing of the pup are two important components. The GSD and the Chow Chow breed are highly intelligent, can be strong willed and dominant.( more information on the breed see www.dogbreedinfo.com/chowchow.htm). They need an owner with a gentle hand but with firm authority. Structured mental and physical daily exercise are also recommended to channel the energy in to the correct direction. Therefore puppy socialization (especially the first 16 weeks of life) and training (ongoing throughout the life of dog) from a very young age is highly recommended. It is also recommended to neuter him at a young age (6 months) to prevent hormone driven aggression. Interaction of any dog breed and a young child needs to be done under supervision due to the risk of accidents. Most dogs will not bite without being provoked what give Chows a bad reputation is that they sometimes will not give a warning before biting and therefore have the potential to be unpredictable. Puppy school is an excellent place to start, but getting input from a dog behaviorist is also something to consider. Your vet will be able to recommend a reputable behaviorist.

Reply to PetHealthCare

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