Shiloh Shepherd – Full Breed Profile

Written by: Bojana Radulovic
The Shiloh Shepherd is a big dog with some of the best traits from the German Shepherd and Alaskan Malamute. Read on to discover more about this breed today.
Dog Breed Group:
Working Dogs
26 to 30 inches
80 to 130 pounds
Life Span:
9 to 14 years

Breed Characteristics:

Apartment Friendly


How well will this breed adapt to apartment living? Is the apartment size the most important factor when it comes to proper living conditions? Is the breed suitable for apartment living?

Good For First-Time Owners


Some dogs aren't suitable for first-time dog owners. Is this breed a good match for someone with no dog experience? Can training help them be on their best behavior with owners with no dog experience? Are they suitable to be handled by someone who is just entering the canine world?

Overall Sensitivity


Some dogs are sensitive. Certain breeds are rough on the outside, while having the softest heart on the inside. In other words, some dogs are 'thick-skinned' while some are 'easygoing.' Is this breed prone to sensitivity?

Tolerates Being Alone


Separation anxiety in dogs is a serious condition that can affect a dog's life quality. Is this breed prone to this condition? Can you leave him alone for hours? How destructive this breed can become when bored, neglected, or not loved enough?

Affectionate With Family


How affectionate this breed will be around his humans? Will he welcome new family friends easily or he will choose to be shy? Some breeds can be clingy with owners, while others don't attach a lot. Will this breed act as the family's best friend?



Some dogs will tolerate children, while others will adore well-behaved ones. Dogs and children should always be supervised, no matter how well trained the dog might be. Will this breed act as a nanny dog or he will stay away from children?

Friendly Toward Other Dogs


Some dog breeds cannot wait to run to the dog park and run with others. Others prefer to be with their humans, and not to be a part of a multi-pet household. Is this breed dog lover or not? How friendly this breed will be toward other dogs?

Friendly Toward Strangers


Some dog breeds tend to be reserved toward strangers and highly suspicious. Others are fast to walk away with them easily. How welcoming this breed is toward strangers?

Drooling Level


If you love to clean all the time drooling level in dogs is a trait that you should mind. Is this breed less likely to drool, or you will always need a towel on hand?

Easy To Groom


Heavier shedding during the shedding season is something that every dog needs to go through. However, some dogs shed just a bit all year round. Is this breed one of them? How often should you groom this dog?

Overall Health


What can you expect from this breed in terms of health? Are there any genetic conditions to vary about? Is obesity a major issue in this breed? By knowing more about the dog's health, you are learning how to help him live a longer and healthier life.

Prone To Obesity


Treats are a great addition to training sessions. Dogs love sweet bites of dog treats but they should be served in moderation. Treats can lead to obesity, next to poor nutrition. Can this breed gain extra weight from treats? How prone to obesity this breed actually is?

Trainability Level


Training some dogs is easier than others. How easy this dog will be to train? What can you expect? Some dogs are huge people pleasers and they will master commands easily, while others will try to outsmart you.

Intelligence Level


Dogs are smart beings. We do our best to train them, but they do still end up training us to adapt to their needs. How intelligent is this breed? Will he try to outsmart you? Or he will need multiple training sessions to master basic commands?

Prey Drive


Dogs were bred for a specific purpose. Those who were bred to hunt have natural instincts to hunt, even today. This is why many dogs, like Terriers, will chase other animals. They will also have a hard time concentrating on your commands when there is something small moving. Is this breed prone to following his prey instincts?

Barking Level


How vocal this breed is? Can you expect neighbors to ring you often to calm your dog? Or you can sleep without worries of hearing your Fido bark? Some breeds are highly vocal, others have unusual sounds, and some are silent. Is this breed prone to barking?

Energy Level


Low-energy dogs are happy with regular walks and indoor chill times. High-energy dogs are always ready for action. Is this breed a couch potato, energetic dog, or somewhere in between?

Exercise Needs


Some dogs are more than happy with a slow stroll down the street. Others need hours of active time to stay happy and fit. Is this breed demanding in terms of exercise? How much exercise this breed needs to stay happy and healthy?

Playfulness Level


Some dogs never lose that puppy spirit, not even in their senior years. Others are more serious and prefer having a job to do. Is this breed demanding in terms of playfulness? Can you expect playfulness in their senior years as well?

The Shiloh Shepherd is an intelligent dog who at first glance looks like a German Shepherd, just bigger.

This doesn’t come as a surprise since this breed is a mix of a few breeds in their genetic creation.

Some of the mixes include the German Shepherd dog and Alaskan Malamute.

Although this is a large dog in size, the Shiloh Shepherd is a true softie, often described by his owners as affectionate, calm, and extremely loving.

This dog can perform a variety of different tasks and jobs, including working as a police dog, search and rescue work, and even working as a child companion.

Shiloh Shepherds are highly intelligent dogs who need plenty of exercise and run to keep their joints active and strong. They will get along nicely with other dogs, but proper training and early socialization should be provided.

See below for more information on this courageous and large dog.

Quick Facts

Real name: Shiloh Shepherd
Origin: United States
Breed type: Working Dogs
Weight: 80 to 130 pounds
Height: 26 to 30 inches
Lifespan: 9 to 14 years
Litter Size: 6 – 12 puppies
Color: Variety of colors, includign black, brown, gray, red, silver, and pied
Coat: Medium-lenght, straight coats

Shiloh Shepherd History

The Shiloh Shepherd is a breed born in the United States, the area of New York to be precise. This large breed was developed in the 1970s by Tina Barber, a German Shepherd enthusiast.

By 1990, the Shiloh Shepherd was recognized as a breed. This large dog is a combination of German Shepherd and Alaskan Malamute in their genetic origin.

The main goal of the breed’s creator, Tina Barber, was to create a dog similar to the German Shepherd but larger in appearance and with a calmer nature.

Breeders’ idea was to mix German Shepherd with significantly larger Alaskan Malamute. Up to this date, these two breeds are the base for powerful Shiloh Shepherd.

Mixing these two breeds started back in 1989, only to add the Canadian White Shepherd and the Czechoslovakian Wolfdog in the 2000s. This additional was mandatory from the breeder’s view to add genetic diversity to make the dog’s health more powerful.

It took extra years for Tina to develop a perfect breed. In 1991 she separated her breeding stock from the American Kennel Club (AKC), and her ideal dog is recognized by the American Rare Breed Association (ARBA), and some other major kennel clubs.

As result, this is a relatively unknown breed. However, true dog lovers do find their way to come to this breed, which will lead to the popularity of the breed.

Shiloh Shepherd Physical Appearance

The Shiloh Shepherd is large size dog. Be sure that you can handle owning this breed.

Large size dogs will demand more space, more financial sources, higher veterinarian bills, and overall more care.

Make sure that you are well aware of these factors before you welcome Shiloh Shepherd into your home and life.

If your apartment is really tiny, you might rethink your decision of getting Shiloh Shepherd, since he can be up to 30 inches, and have up to 130 pounds. Females are slightly smaller than males are.

In appearance, the Shiloh Shepherd will always look like a German Shepherd. They are very similar if not identical.

Thanks to selective breeding, the Shiloh Shepherd seems like a more powerful dog opposite to a German Shepherd, only with better hips.

Compared to the German shepherd, the Shiloh Shepherd looks more proportionate.

Due to his large size, the Shiloh Shepherd is often mistaken with the Caucasian Shepherd, a breed also known as the Russian bear.

The Shiloh Shepherd comes with a strong wolf-like appearance, with a broad head, and a long muzzle.

He has large triangular ears that are commonly seen in German Shepherd. Their eyes are commonly golden-brown eyes that give a calm and deep look.

This breed will always have a long plumbing tail which is similar to the Alaskan Malamute.

Paws will be large and fluffy. The coat comes in two options and can be smooth ot extremely fluffy. The undercoat is always dense and thick.

Their outer coat is fluffy and the coat is smooth. The coat is never silky. The coat color is similar to German Shepherd. The most common color is the bi-colored black and tan color, he will have a solid single color.

Another color may be blue and liver, again similar to German Shepherd. Other colors may be red, sable, brown, and gold.

Shiloh Shepherd Personality

Shiloh Shepherds are active dogs who love having a job to do. They are great family companions and highly versatile dogs, suitable for many different tasks.

They will excel at duties that are linked with service, guidance, and therapy.

Shiloh Shepherds love spending time with their family members when there isn’t a job to be done.

Whatever you are doing they will love.

Are you passionate about hiking? Shiloh will be next to you to protect you during the long hikes.

Are you a morning runner? Fear not of running alone, because Shiloh Shepherd will run for miles without breaking a sweat.

Do you love spending time in the park tossing a frisbee with your children? You will have a furry companion for sure, loving frisbee sessions as well.

This breed is highly trainable and intelligent and will demand the right mental stimulation.

Since they are highly trainable, they are capable of learning new tricks easily and fast.

Make sure that you use only positive reinforcement training methods to bring the best out of this breed. They like to work and they need a job to do, no matter how small it might be.

Shiloh Shepherds need purpose and this is how you can make this dog happy. They can easily become bored and frustrated, so supervision is welcome.

Otherwise, you can expect to learn how it feels when your dog is bored and starts expressing destructive behavior.

Shilohs are active dogs, especially when they are outdoors. When indoors they are calm and enjoy chilling with their family members.

Shiloh Shepherd Training

A Shiloh Shepherd is the perfect dog for the training process. They are highly trainable and thrive on structured training sessions and proper treats.

Since this breed is recommended for experienced dog owners, it comes as no surprise that the breed will excel in positive reinforcement training.

Never use any harsh training methods with any dog, including this breed.

Make training sessions regular, short, and packed with treats. Training should start as soon as you bring your Shilon home.

Dogs are capable of mastering basic commands at the age of eight weeks.

Before your puppy starts spending time with other dogs make sure that he knows the ‘sit’ and ‘come’ commands.

Once your veterinarian gives you the green light, you can start exposing your puppy to the outside world completely.

This means that you can introduce him to other dogs, have exposure to new areas, and let him spend tiem in the dog park.

In the meantime, you can introduce him indoors to your family and friends safely.

Make sure that all guests respect house rules for dogs.

If you have children educate them on how to behave around dogs and what are major no-no moments are.

Children shouldn’t:

  • Disturb dog while eating
  • Disturb dog while drinking
  • Disturb dog while resting

This way you can prevent major accidents. Children and dogs would never be left alone, no matter how well-behaved your dog is.

If you’re adopting a dog, you still have to check his trainability knowledge.

Try basic commands, and see where you need to reinforce his training skills.

If you feel that you need extra help, think about hiring a professional dog trainer.

You can always attend training classes together. This can be a great bonding activity for both you and your dog.

Shiloh Shepherd Exercise

To keep this breed happy and engaged you should provide enough exercise.

This refers both to the body and mind. Mental stimulation and body exercise are what make a difference between a bored and happy dog.

They need regular space to vent their energy and keep their mind running.

Otherwise, they will become bored which will lead to some form of destructive behavior, such as chewing.

This breed needs a fair amount of exercise because they are very active by nature.

Next to regular walks, provide additional exercise of at least 60 minutes.

It can be a more intense walk, hiking with obstacles, running in the dog park, and so on. If you need more ideas on how to help your Shiloh burn extra energy talk with a professional dog trainer.

Just make sure that you don’t over workout your Shilon puppy because puppies of the larger breed have slower development.

If you cannot provide enough exercise for this breed you will have a dog with too much energy to burn. Don’t forget that a tired dog is a happy dog.

Shiloh Shepherd Grooming

If you are not a fan of regular brushing sessions, the Shiloh Shepherd isn’t the breed for you. This breed will need regular brushing and beyond.

After all, this is a breed with strong German Shepherd genes and everyone knows just how heavy shedders famous German Shepherds are.

Shiloh Shepherd coats come in many colors and as a general rule, their coats are a mix of two or more colors.

Their coats are usually of medium length and straight. The coat is normal density, making it easy to maintain.

This breed isn’t suitable for those who suffer from allergies. Daily brushing with the proper grooming tools is mandatory to coat clean and healthy.

This practice is a great way to check your dog for fleas and any sign of skin infection.

You should have a vacuum cleaner on hand every day and expect heavier shedding during the shedding season.

The shedding season is the strongest in spring and autumn. During this period you will have to provide more frequent brushing.

The rest is basic care:

  • Check gums weekly
  • Learn how to clean ears
  • Check eyes weekly for any sign of infection
  • Provide regular vaccination
  • Plan parasite control

Shiloh Shepherds have a double coat that protects them from extreme temperature. This means that your Shiloh Shepherd will adore running in the snow.

He will also enjoy a good splash of water during the summertime. Just make sure he knows where to go to dry himself.

Your Shiloh Shepherd should know that extremely cold tiles after a bath isn’t good for him – he should know to search for sunny areas.

No matter what you have heard, do not clip Shiloh Shepherd’s coat. Their coat is a gift by nature and keeps them cool during the summer days and nights.

Bear in mind that he is an indoor dog and should live indoors. Due to their all-weather coats and love for snow, this breed is often seen in Canada.

Living With Shiloh Shepherd

Shiloh Shepherds are great family dogs. They will be highly protective of their territory and their humans. They are also great watchdogs. They may be large in size, but they are far from being aggressive.

As long as you are using positive reinforcement training methods, you should have a well-behaved Shiloh Shepherd. These large dogs will get along great with children of all ages, especially if they are raised together.

Due to their soft nature, they are often called gentle giants because they are sweet and gentle with children. As with any breed, your children should know how to behave around dogs.

No dog, no matter how well trained and well behaved he might be, should be left along with children. Supervision is what keeps accidents away.

Shiloh Shepherds will always greet strangers and other dogs. They will get along with other home dogs, pets, and even cats.

If you want a truly socialized Shiloh Shepherd you should focus on early socialization.

Shiloh Shepherd Health

As with any dog, certain health issues may occur along the way.

If you are getting a dog from a reputable breeder you should have no issues with health issues with your dog.

A responsible breeder will always present you with medical documentation on the dog. If you are not given one, know that you are standing in the middle of a puppy mill – this is your red flag to walk away.

As long as you provide high-quality food, regular veterinarian check-ups, and do everything in terms of prevention, your Shiloh Shepherd should have a long and healthy life.

The Bottom Line

Does Shiloh Shepherd sound like a breed for you? If so, make sure that you have enough experience as a dog owner to own this breed.

Large dogs are powerful in size, while the shepherd trait will make them highly energetic.

Be 100% sure that you can handle owning this breed. If you do end up with this breed as your next dog, make sure that you provide the proper care, nurturing environment, and a lot of exercises.

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