German Shepherd vs Pitbull: Breed Comparison

Intrigued in the German Shepherd vs Pitbull dispute? There are some vital differences between these 2 outstanding types!

German Shepherd vs Pitbull

GSDs have a long working history, and because of this, they are typically simpler to educate. Yet, because of an insalubrious previous career as battling pets, many regions still restrict Pitbulls.

And also, the GSD’s long layer requires even more maintenance than anyone of the Pitbull kinds.

But what various other aspects should you take into consideration when selecting in between these 2 types?

Choosing Between a German Shepherd vs Pitbull

These two popular pet dog breeds have huge track records, yet just how do they contrast versus each other?

The German Shepherd is a preferred breed, however, both of these breeds have had debate bordering them in the past.

In this short article, we will be covering everything from personality to health concerns in these 2 types to discover at last which is the much better breed as a family member’s dog.

So allow’s see what we can figure out!

German Shepherd vs Pitbull History

A great starting factor in comparing these types is to look at their respective histories.

It can give us a fantastic suggestion of what we can potentially expect to see in the modern canines.

How do the German Shepherd vs Pitbull origins contrast?

History of the German Shepherd

The German Shepherd traces its origins back to late 19th century Germany. Back then, there were several forms of a herding pet dog that differed throughout Germany’s districts.

A German Cavalry Officer referred to as Captain Max von Stephanitz made a decision to cross a few of these breeds in an attempt to develop the perfect herding pet dog.

After some years, Stephanitz prospered in creating an extremely intelligent pet dog that not only mastered rounding up yet many various other self-controls.

They were called the German Shepherd, and they were the very first of the modern breed we understand well today.

Nowadays, the German Shepherd is typically utilized by both police and also military forces. Nonetheless, the type likewise finds itself as an incredibly popular companion dog.

History of the Pitbull

When it comes to the Pitbull, it’s essential to recognize that the term describes a couple of different breeds.

What types fall under the Pitbull name goes through some discussion, but the majority agree that the American Pit Bull Terrier, American Staffordshire Terrier, and Staffordshire Bull Terrier all fit into this classification.

While each Pitbull type has their own background, they each share an unfortunate background of being forced to participate in blood sports.

They were bred to fight various other pet dogs, or sometimes, larger pets such as bears. Viewers would bank on the result.

This harsh practice was forbidden throughout Britain in the mid-18th century, nevertheless, it wasn’t till 1976 that pet dogfighting was disallowed across all states in America.

In spite of their brutal past, Pitbulls find themselves leading satisfying lives as companion pets with the appropriate loving proprietors.

German Shepherd vs Pitbull Appearance

German Shepherds as well as Pitbulls are substantially different breeds when it involves their physical appearance.

However, there are some similarities, such as the truth that they are both really well-built and also solid pet dogs.

Let’s look additionally and also see exactly how German Shepherd vs Pitbull contrast on appearance.

Height and Weight

The German Shepherd frequently reaches heights of 22– 26 inches.

A healthy sampling of the type ought to evaluate around 50– 95 extra pounds.

When it comes to Pitbulls, it can differ depending upon which specific type you are checking out.

On one end of the range, the Staffordshire Bull Terrier has an ordinary elevation of 14– 16 inches and an ordinary weight of 24– 38 pounds.

At the various other ends, American Pit Bull Terriers reach sizes closer to the German Shepherd: 17– 21 inches.

However, they evaluate considerably much less, with a typical weight of 30– 60 pounds.

Physical Traits

As for the physical attributes of each breed, the German Shepherd needs to have a black facemask, set up triangular ears, as well as a bushy tail that is established rather reduced with a slight contour.

Pitbulls will certainly vary by breed, but they all share some characteristics, particularly, a square head and also a stocky body.

They need to have a deep, wide upper body and a muscled neck.


There is a substantial distinction in the coats of these two types.

German Shepherds need to have a dual-layer. Their external layer should be really thick and also coarse with straight or a little bumpy hair.

Most of the time, their coat will certainly be the average length and also lie close to the body.

Nonetheless, shorter and also much longer haired German Shepherds are also feasible, albeit more unusual.

Pitbulls typically have really short coats that are really near to the skin. Their hair may be stiff or smooth to the touch.

German Shepherd Color

As for what shades you may anticipate in either type, both have a large number of possibilities!

One of the most common shades seen in the German Shepherd consist of:

  • Black
  • Black as well as tan
  • Gray
  • Sable
  • Blue
  • Red as well as black
  • Liver
  • Black and silver

Pitbull Color

In the different Pitbull breeds, you can expect to commonly see the adhering to layer colors:

  • Red
  • Fawn
  • Black
  • White
  • Blue
  • Liver

Pitbulls commonly have white spots on their upper body, legs, as well as face along with these base colors.

German Shepherd vs Pitbull Temperament

The character and also individuality of the German Shepherd and the Pitbull is something lots of are concerned regarding.

This is due to the anxieties that these two breeds might be aggressive and also, therefore, unsafe dogs.

But exactly how real is this?

Is either breed really hazardous?

Allow’s take a comprehensive look.

Aggression: The Stats

In 2 types of research from the 1970s, German Shepherds were second just to mixed-breed pets as the type usually reported as being involved in bite assaults on people.

Nonetheless, a 1991 review of those researches clarifies why ranking dog attack statistics by type is not simple.

Initially, German Shepherds might be in charge of a large percentage of bites simply due to the fact that a huge percentage of dogs are German Shepherds.

German Shepherds have continually rated amongst one of the most prominent dog types for years, and also so 0.1% of GSDs are associated with bite assaults in one year, that’s still a lot of canines.

If in the same year, 0.1% of the little-known Otterhound breed bites a person, the variety of attacks would certainly be much smaller.

Yet it’s difficult to totally expand pet dog bite statistics with this type of information, so we never ever get the full image.


Second, because they are so popular, witnesses and also victims could misidentify other black as well as tan dogs as German Shepherds.

However, both the Pitbull as well as the German Shepherd have been involved in bite assaults that have caused severe injuries.

It was likewise located that 42% of dog-bite-related casualties in the years 1979– 1988 were reported to be Pitbulls, while German Shepherds made up 15% of the total number.

Once again, we’re missing out on lots of information below, however, what we can see is that Pitbulls are dramatically extra unsafe when they do assault and also are linked with greater morbidity rates.

This is most likely since Pitbulls have extremely strong jaw muscle mass as well as a bite with extraordinary pressure.

Because of this, the Pitbull is really outlawed or under stringent problems in many countries as a result of worries over its hostility.

Is Either Breed Inherently Aggressive?

Since we have actually seen the statistics, it’s very easy to come to the final thought that these types have the possibility to be hostile as well as harmful.

Yet does this mean that every participant of each type is an aggressive canine?

Vice versa.

The breed of any given dog is yet one sign of prospective aggressiveness.

Factors Affecting Aggression

There are many more aspects at play, a few of which can probably play a far more important function in the development of aggressiveness.

The environment a pet grows up in, just how they are taken care of, their training, or lack thereof, all can have a significant result on a pet’s personality as it grows.

There are lots of Pitbulls that are beautiful, friendly dogs in spite of their notorious online reputation.

Furthermore, numerous German Shepherds are loving, caring canines.


Obviously, you should not mark down the reality that these dogs have the prospective to be unsafe.

You need to take as much care as feasible to get the breed from a good breeder and train them as completely as possible while they are still young.

Both breeds might not make for a great choice for households with specifically young members, due to the potential dangers.

Yet at the end of the day, both types have wonderful pet dogs who have never ever shown an ounce of hostility.

They should have an opportunity, as long as any other dog.

Other Potential Temperament Issues

Both breeds can be unconcerned with complete strangers, so they require cautious socializing from a young age to ensure they grow up to be respectful and also pleasant canines.

The German Shepherd as well as the Pitbull might additionally take part in destructive behaviors when they are burnt out.

They can also tend to be extremely abundant when young.

It’s vital to maintain them effectively worked out as well as mentally triggered daily. Take a look at this post on excellent toys for canines with strong jaws that like to eat.

The Pitbull has a strong mind of its very own and also will certainly need an experienced owner to keep them in control.

Given that Pitbulls were made use of for dog battles, they are most likely than German Shepherds to display aggressiveness toward other pet dogs.

Which Breed Is Better?

So which type is the much better fit for families, based on their character?

We would say the German Shepherd is best for most households.

They are easier to control and visibly much less unsafe than some Pitbulls.

In addition, they are free from much of the unsafe pet legislation that impacts the Pitbull.

However, this does not mean the Pitbull is a lost cause, however, they may be a better fit for an experienced owner who wants to place in the additional time to elevate them.

German Shepherd vs Pitbull Training

Detailed training from a young age is essential to make sure that both the German Shepherd and the Pitbull grow into mannerly adults.

Socialization is essential to ensure that the natural wariness toward strangers that both types possess does not turn into adverse attributes such as aggressiveness.

Obedience training is key to maintaining these effective breeds well behaved.

As for which of both breeds is simpler to train, that accolade goes to the German Shepherd!

They are eager to please their owners and also pick up new commands promptly.

Training Guides

If you need aid in training your German Shepherd or Pitbull, take a look at our guides on the subject listed below!

  • Understanding Your Dog
  • Training Your Dog
  • Potty Training Schedule
  • Crate Training

German Shepherd vs Pitbull Exercise

Both the German Shepherd as well as the Pitbull are energetic pets that need a great amount of workout daily to stay healthy and also satisfied.

A good-sized daily walk as well as some outside play in a securely fenced area is usually adequate for both types.

Nevertheless, it’s important to be cautious when they are still pups, especially when it comes to the German Shepherd.

While they are still creating, it is an excellent suggestion to prevent difficult workout, as it can damage their growing joints.

Maintain this in mind, and keep their strolls as well as play sessions much shorter while they are still growing.

German Shepherd vs Pitbull Health

Unfortunately, both the German Shepherd and the Pitbull are at threat for severe wellness conditions.

Prior to you select either breed over the various other, you must consider the health threats each type encounters.

The Health Problems of Both Breeds

In the case of the German Shepherd, wellness problems common within the breed include:

  • Hip and also elbow joint dysplasia
  • Degenerative myelopathy
  • Bloat
  • Cataracts
  • Epilepsy

As for the Pitbull, it relies on what type you are considering.

The American Pitbull Terrier is at a raised danger for hip dysplasia, retinal dysplasia, and congenital heart disease.

The Staffordshire Bull Terrier is in danger for hereditary cataracts, arm joint dysplasia, as well as a hereditary condition referred to as L2HGA which can trigger dementia, seizures, and unsteady strolling.

Lastly, the American Staffordshire Terrier can run into troubles with hypothyroidism, cranial cruciate ligament illness, and cerebellar degeneration.

Which Breed Is Healthier?

So German Shepherd vs Pitbull, which is healthiest? As you can see, both go to danger for severe wellness conditions.

It’s crucial to keep in mind that the German Shepherd is at a much greater threat of joint troubles than the Pitbull.

They also have a much shorter life-span with an average life span of 7– 10 years, much less than the Pitbull’s ordinary lifespan of 12– 14 years.

Mortality Studies

A research study that checked out the death of different breeds in a dataset containing over 350,000 dogs.

It was found that the German Shepherd had a considerably higher percentage of mortality when compared to various other pure-blooded types.

This could be because of poor reproducing methods, causing a much greater price of significant health problems.

Therefore, we would state that the Pitbull is the much healthier breed.

However, they are not without their very own problems.

No matter, most of the problems laid out above have a genetic basis.

For that reason, it is very crucial that you purchase any kind of pups of either breed from reliable dog breeders.


When it concerns brushing, the Pitbull is normally really simple to manage because of their brief coats. A basic brush weekly usually serves them well enough!

However, German Shepherds often tend to have longer coats. Not just that, they are notorious shedders!

A lot of the moment, they will certainly need a brush two to three times a week, but this may end up being a day-to-day affair throughout losing seasons.

Remember that appropriate pet grooming encompasses their nails and teeth also!

Both breeds require normal cutting of the nails and cleaning of the teeth.

The Pitbull is most definitely the much easier breed of the two to groom.


As for feeding, both breeds do well on top-notch pet dog food.

Be sure to work with your vet to guarantee your German Shepherd or Pitbull is receiving all the nutrients it requires.

Which Breed Makes a Better Pet?

So at the end of all of it, which breed is the far better family pet? German Shepherd vs Pitbull?

However, there is no straight solution when it concerns these two breeds.

It comes down to what you are searching for in a family pet.

Let’s Recap

The German Shepherd is much easier to regulate of the two. On top of this, they are extra easily educated and also loyal.

However, the Pitbull is the healthier of both types and also has a coat that is much easier to maintain than the German Shepherd.

We would certainly claim that the Pitbull makes a much better option for family members who are trying to find a smaller, easier-maintained canine.

Owners will certainly need to be in a location that allows them to be maintained and have some experience taking care of stubborn breeds.

German Shepherds make a far better fit for family members that are much less seasoned and also are searching for a much more conveniently trained type.

They should have room for a huge pet dog in their home and also be prepared to take a great deal of time and care looking for a healthy and balanced line of this breed.

Tell Us About Your Experiences!

Which breed do you choose?

Do you have anything to add?

Let us recognize listed below!

Other Great Guides

If you’ve loved our German Shepherd vs Pitbull argument, we’ve got a few other excellent guides you’ll take pleasure in.

Final Thought

Generally, the Pitbull Terrier and also the German Shepherd are comparable in their love for their human beings, and also they are both one of the most devoted canines around. Not only does this make them actually loyal, yet in these people, you know that you have actually got a friend permanently. They can come to be even more intriguing when they get blended together.

The Pitbull Terrier is extra sociable and also friendly with unidentified humans, so, therefore, he is happy for anybody and everybody to be in his house, whereas the German Shepherd is far more aloof as well as mindful of unfamiliar people.

Both of these traits are matched to the right household residence, so all you need to do currently is make a decision which pooch would suit you and your way of life much better, however, know that either pet is equally as adorable and also loving as the various other, so every person’s a winner!

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