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German Shepherd vs Golden Retriever – Which one is a better dog breed for you?

"Find similarities and differences between German Shepherd vs Golden Retriever" Compare German Shepherd and Golden Retriever. Which is better: German Shepherd or Golden Retriever?
Name German Shepherd Golden Retriever
OriginsGermany Scotland
Group Pastoral Dogs (Herding Dogs) Gun Dog
Popularity Rank23
Reviews01
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Other Names Alsatian, Berger Allemand, Alsatian wolf dog (UK), Deutscher Schäferhund, Schäferhund Yellow Retriever, Golden Flat Coat
Breed Type Purebred Purebred
AKC Group Recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1908 as a Herding breed. Recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1925 as a Sporting breed.
FCI Group Recognized by FCI in the Sheepdogs and Cattledogs (except Swiss Cattledogs) group, in the Sheepdogs section. Recognized by FCI in the Retrievers - Flushing Dogs - Water Dogs group, in the Retrievers section.
Breed Recognition American Canine Registry American Kennel Club America's Pet Registry Canadian Kennel Club Dog Registry of America Inc. Federation Cynologique Internationale Kennel Club of Great Britain North American Purebred Registry, Inc. American Canine Association, Inc. Australian National Kennel Council Continental Kennel Club National Kennel Club New Zealand Kennel Club United Kennel Club German Shepherd Dog Club Of America American Canine Registry American Kennel Club America's Pet Registry Canadian Kennel Club Dog Registry of America Inc. Federation Cynologique Internationale Kennel Club of Great Britain North American Purebred Registry, Inc. American Canine Association, Inc. Australian National Kennel Council Continental Kennel Club National Kennel Club New Zealand Kennel Club United Kennel Club
Price $800-$2000 $1000-$2000

General Appearance - German Shepherd vs Golden Retriever

Size Large Large
Weight Male: 66-88 pounds (30-40 kg), Female: 49-71 pounds (22-32 kg) Male: 60-80 pounds (27-36 kg), Female: 55-70 pounds (25-32 kg)
Avg. Weight Male: 77 pounds (35 kg), Female: 60 pounds (27 kg) Male: 70 pounds (31.5 kg), Female: 62.5 pounds (28.5 kg)
Height Male: 24-26 inches (60-65 cm), Female: 22-24 inches (55-60 cm) Male: 22-24 inches (56-61cm), Female: 20-22 inches (51-56 cm)
Avg. Height Male: 25 inches (62.5 cm), Female: 23 inches (57.5 cm) Male: 23 inches (58.5 cm), Female: 21 inches (53.5 cm)

Hair & Care - German Shepherd vs Golden Retriever

Coat Fuzzy Silky Wavy Shiny Straight
Colors Silver Tan Red Black Golden Light
Grooming
Average: The German Shepherd requires average grooming effort.
Average: The Golden Retriever requires average grooming effort.
Shedding Level
German Shepherds are heavy shedders.
Golden Retrievers shed moderately.

Characteristics - German Shepherd vs Golden Retriever

Temperament Alert Courageous Intelligent Obedient Confident Curious Loyal Watchful Confident Intelligent Reliable Friendly Kind Trustworthy
Intelligent Rank
Outstanding: German Shepherd is one of the brightest dog breeds.
Outstanding: Golden Retriever is one of the brightest dog breeds.
Trainability
German Shepherds are easy to train.
Golden Retrievers are easy to train.
Playfulness
German Shepherds, like any other dog breed, like playing.
The Golden Retriever is a highly playful breed.
Sensitivity Level
German Shepherds don't like an irregular daily routine, noisy household and frequent guest visits.
Golden Retrievers don't like an irregular daily routine, noisy household and frequent guest visits.
Affection Level
German Shepherds are genuinely loyal, soft and gentle, loving and affectionate dogs toward their handlers.
Golden Retrievers are genuinely loyal, soft and gentle, loving and affectionate dogs toward their handlers.
Social Needs
German Shepherds need for social interaction is average.
Golden Retrievers need a lot of social interaction.
Barking
Low to Average: The German Shepherd rarely barks.
Low to Average: The Golden Retriever rarely barks.
Watchdog Ability
German Shepherds are one of the best watchdogs.
Golden Retrievers are average watchdogs.
Territorial
German Shepherds are extremely protective guard dogs.
Golden Retrievers are average defenders.
Biting Potential High
The German Shepherd has a high chance of biting somebody.
Moderate
The Golden Retriever has an average chance of biting somebody.
Mouthiness
German Shepherds have a strong tendency to nip, chew, play-bite, or herd people.
Golden Retrievers have a strong tendency to nip, chew, play-bite, or herd people.
Impulse to Wander or Roam
German Shepherds are not the biggest explorers.
Golden Retrievers tend to escape less than other breeds.
Prey Drive
German Shepherds have a higher impulse to chase and catch something than other dog breeds.
Golden Retrievers have an average prey drive, which means that they don't have a high impulse to chase and catch something like a cat or any other small aminals, but it might happen.
Apartment Friendly
German Shepherds are not the best choice for an apartment lifestyle, but they don't mind being inside if you walk them several times every day.
Golden Retrievers are not recommended for an apartment lifestyle.
Adaptability
German Shepherds adapt very well to lifestyle changes and basically all living environments.
Golden Retrievers adapt very well to lifestyle changes and basically all living environments.
Tolerates Being Left Alone
Just like every puppy, they are prone to panic, cry, bark, whine when they left alone by their owner.
Golden Retrievers tend to have separation anxiety when their owners left them alone at home because they bond very closely with them.
Fighting Dog Yes
In history, this breed was unfortunately used for combat dog.
Not really
In history, this breed was not really used for combat dog.

Good With - German Shepherd vs Golden Retriever

Stranger Friendly
German Shepherds are stranger friendly dogs.
Golden Retrievers are very stranger friendly dogs.
Child Friendly
German Shepherds are very kid-friendly dogs.
Golden Retrievers are very kid-friendly dogs.
Cat Friendly
German Shepherds are average friendly towards cats.
Golden Retrievers are cat-friendly dogs.
Dog Friendly
German Shepherds are not the most dog-friendly dogs.
Golden Retrievers are very dog-friendly dogs.
Office Friendly No
German Shepherd is not the best dog breed for office environment.
No
Golden Retriever is not the best dog breed for office environment.
Senior Citizens Friendly
German Shepherds are one of the best breeds for elderly people.
Golden Retrievers are one of the best breeds for elderly people.
Pet Friendly
German Shepherds are generally with other pets.
Golden Retrievers are usually friendly towards other pets.
Good For First Time Owners No
German Shepherds are not good for novice owners, due to their stubborn personality.
No
Golden Retrievers are not good for novice owners, due to their stubborn personality.
Service Dog Yes
This breed makes good as a service dog.
Yes
This breed makes good as a service dog.
Therapy Dog Yes
This breed makes a perfect therapy dog.
Yes
This breed makes a perfect therapy dog.
Detection Dog or Sniffer Dog Yes
A detection dog or sniffer dog is a dog that is trained to use its senses (mostly its smell) to detect substances such as explosives, illegal drugs, wildlife scat, currency, blood, and contraband electronics such as illicit mobile phones.
Yes
A detection dog or sniffer dog is a dog that is trained to use its senses (mostly its smell) to detect substances such as explosives, illegal drugs, wildlife scat, currency, blood, and contraband electronics such as illicit mobile phones.
Search and Rescue Dog (SAR) Yes
The use of dogs in search and rescue (SAR) is a valuable component in wilderness tracking, natural disasters, mass casualty events, and in locating missing people.
Yes
The use of dogs in search and rescue (SAR) is a valuable component in wilderness tracking, natural disasters, mass casualty events, and in locating missing people.
Boat Dog Not really
German Shepherd breed usually doesn't like being on a boat.
Yes
Golden Retriever breed usually likes being on a boat.
Cart Pulling or Drafting Dog Not really
A drafting dog or draft dog is a dog bred and used for cart pulling.
Not really
A drafting dog or draft dog is a dog bred and used for cart pulling.

Health Factors - German Shepherd vs Golden Retriever

Health Issues
German Shepherds are commonly healthy dogs.
Golden Retrievers are commonly healthy dogs.
Health Problems Allergies Blindness Bloat Cancer Cataracts Cherry Eye Chronic Diarrhea Cruciate Ligament Rupture Cushing's Syndrome Degenerative Myelopathy Demodectic Mange Diabetes Digestive Problems Elbow Dysplasia Epilepsy Exocrine Pancreatic Insufficiency Heart Disease Hemophilia A Hemophilia B Hip Dysplasia Hypertrophic Osteodystrophy Lens Luxation Lupus Megaesophagus Myasthenia Gravis Nail Bed Disease Osteochondrosis Pannus Panosteitis Paralysis Perianal Fistula Progressive retinal atrophy (PRA) Retinal Dysplasia Seborrhea Vitiligo Von Willebrand's Disease Wobbler's Syndrome Allergies Bloat Cataracts Elbow Dysplasia Epilepsy Hemangiosarcoma Hip Dysplasia Hypothyroidism Osteochondrosis Dissecans Osteosarcoma Progressive retinal atrophy (PRA) Subvalvular Aortic Stenosis Von Willebrand's Disease
Life Expectancy 10-13 years 10-12 years
Hypoallergenic No No
Energy Level
German Shepherds are high energy dogs.
Golden Retrievers are high energy dogs.
Exercise Need
German Shepherds need quite a lot of exercise.
Golden Retrievers need a lot of exercises.
Sleeping Need
German Shepherds don't need too much sleep.
Golden Retrievers don't need too much sleep.
Avg. daily food consumption 3 to 4 cups of high-quality dry food a day, divided into two meals. 3 to 4 cups of high-quality dry food a day, divided into two meals.
Weight Gain Potential
Low to Average.
High: The Golden Retriever breed has a strong tendency to overweight.
Weather & Climate Tolerates warm and cold weather. Tolerates warm and cold weather.
Stinkiness Medium
The German Shepherd has an average chance of bad smell.
Medium
The Golden Retriever has an average chance of bad smell.
Drooling tendency
The German Shepherd is a perfect example for very low drooling tendency.
The Golden Retriever drools quite a lot, so if you dislike being covered by slobber spots on your clothes, you may want to choose another dog breed.

Reproducibility - German Shepherd vs Golden Retriever

Gestation Length 60-64 days 60-64 days
How often can the have a litter? Once a year.
More frequent breeding is not healthy.
Once a year.
More frequent breeding is not healthy.
Litter Size 6-10 puppies 5-10 puppies

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