Shiloh Shepherd

Table of Contents

shiloh shepherd in the snow

Origin and History of the Shiloh Shepherd

With their gentle temperament, loyalty, and excellent service, Shiloh Shepherds are an amazing breed of the Shepherd group. But the genetic makeup of the breed includes a combination of several different breeds, including the German Shepherd and the Alaskan Malamute. 

The Shiloh Shepherd was first developed between the 1960s and the 1970s in the United States by a breeder called Tina Barber. Her purpose was creating a breed that resembled German Shepherds in terms of appearance, but that was more sizable and calmer.

The Alaskan Malamute genetic material added these characteristics to what would become the Shiloh Shepherd as this breed is widely known for being intelligent, adaptable, as well as sociable. These dogs are closely related to King Shepherds as well.

male german shepherd

German Shepherds

The German Shepherd is a smart and brave dog that was developed sometime in the 19th century. Initially, the breed was used for herding, but later it became popular with army officers as they noticed that the dogs were agile, intelligent, and operative.

Nowadays, the German Shepherd is by far the most popular dog breed for military and police units across the world. It is also used as a service dog since it responds to commands very well and can learn new ones in a timely fashion and with as little effort as possible.

German Shepherds have a reputation for being loyal, and they often become attached to a person that they recognize as being their sole owner. 

These dogs are well-balanced, well-muscled, and medium-sized. They measure 24 to 26 inches and weigh between 50 and 90 pounds.

Alaskan Malamutes

No one knows the exact time when Alaskan Malamutes appeared, and that’s because they are among the oldest dog breeds in the world. They are believed to have accompanied Paleolithic hunters that migrated to North America from Asia approximately 4,000 years ago.

In the Arctic, Alaskan Malamutes are used as sled dogs as they can work well in packs to carry packages over long distances. 

This dog breed is characterized by a well-muscled body, a deep chest, and a powerful appearance. Alaskan Malamutes are usually curious and attentive, and since they are also loyal, affectionate, as well as playful, they make the perfect companions for families with children. 

According to the breed standard, the Alaskan Malamute should be around 23 inches tall and have a weight of 75 to 100 pounds. 

two malamutes in the snow

Appearance of the Shiloh Shepherd

Shiloh Shepherds come in a wide range of colors that range from black and brown to gray, pied, and red. Their coat typically includes a combination of at least two colors. Shiloh Shepherds get their coat colors mainly from their German Shepherd parent.

This dog has a broad head, black lips, as well as a tapered muzzle. Their coat is very soft, but it’s also thick since it grows in different layers – an undercoat and a top coat. 

Compared to other breeds, the Shiloh Shepherd grows to be a quite large dog, some of them weighing between 100 and 130 pounds and standing at 28 to 30 inches. 

Females are slightly lighter and shorter than males, weighing in at 80 to 100 pounds and measuring 65-70 inches.

Temperament of the Shiloh Shepherd

Despite their size, Shiloh Shepherds can be considered ‘gentle giants’ as they have a very calm nature. This makes them perfect for kids. They typically get attached to their owners, which is why they can be used for service assistance or therapy work. 

While it might be true that some Shiloh Shepherds can dominate other dogs, especially if they are males, this issue is largely prevented with early socialization. 

Like their German Shepherd ancestors, these dogs can be quite protective of their families. However, they are not going to show any aggression or hostility if they are unprovoked. 

As it was to be expected, they make very good watchdogs.

brown shepherd dog
shepherd puppy running

Health And Care

Unfortunately, the Shiloh Shepherd inherits some of the health problems that its German Shepherd ancestor can develop. This is why this breed is predisposed to hip and elbow dysplasia. 

Another health issue that this type of dog can suffer from is gastric torsion, but this is to be expected with most large dog breeds. Degenerative myelopathy is another condition that affects the Shiloh Shepherd, and it can result in paraplegia since it involves the degeneration of the spinal cord. 

Other health problems that show up in this breed are:

  • Perianal fistula
  • Megaesophagus
  • Panosteitis

On the other hand, the vast majority of dogs are healthy. The breed has a lifespan of 9 to 14 years, but some dogs can live for longer if they are properly taken care of. 

In terms of care, Shiloh Shepherds have to get at least sixty minutes of exercise per day. Choose a good-quality dog food if you want your pooch to get the right kind of nutrition, and make sure you take them to the vet at least once or twice a year for regular checkups.

Shiloh Shepherd Grooming Tips

Shiloh Shepherds can be heavy shedders, which can be a drawback for people considering this breed. To keep your dog’s coat in good health and avoid giving yourself a hard time because of the shedding, you should brush Fido’s coat at least once a day. 

Bathing is recommended only once in a while and if it’s absolutely necessary. These dogs have sensitive skin, and bathing too often or using harsh cleaning agents can lead to them suffering from dermatitis.

Training Your Shiloh Shepherd

As intelligent as they might be, Shiloh Shepherds can also be a bit stubborn at times. You have to ensure that your canine companion benefits from a firm and consistent training, especially as a puppy. 

Positive reinforcement is highly recommended with this breed. For this, you can use anything from your dog’s favorite toys to their favorite treats. Using punishment is not a good idea, especially since this breed is very sensitive and can become defensive. 

Puppies have to be socialized as early as possible in order to learn how to interact with humans and other animals. This is especially necessary for households where other dogs reside. 

Fortunately, this breed is smart, which means that once properly trained when young, it can pick up new commands in a timely fashion. 

Behavioral training offers excellent results as most dogs are able to understand when they’ve done something good, and they get a reward and when unwanted behavior results in being ignored.

Deciding on a Shiloh Shepherd

Since this dog’s life span is rather long, you are making a real commitment when you get one. You will have to care for your canine friend for at least a decade and even more, in some cases. 

Shiloh Shepherds aren’t the perfect pets for people who do not have enough time to take them out for walks at least twice a day. They need exercise to thrive, and spending time in the yard isn’t enough if the dogs don’t also get some stimulation in the form of playtime, for example. 

If you want to decide whether a Shiloh Shepherd is the right pet for you, you can always look for a breeder in your area and ask them whether you can come to visit their kennel.

shepherd puppy in studio

A Shiloh Shepherd is not the right dog for you if:

A Shiloh Shepherd is the right dog for you if:

brown puppy yawning

Finding your Puppy Breeder

If you’ve made up your mind and you know for sure that a Shiloh Shepherd is the right type of dog for you, you can now start to look for a breeder. Regardless of the one you end up choosing, you should know that no breeder can guarantee you that your dog is not going to suffer from hip dysplasia. 

Unfortunately, both German Shepherds and Shiloh Shepherds have this defect, and the least that a breeder can do to help is to show you some papers according to which the pup’s parents haven’t suffered from the condition. 

Doing a little extra research can lead to you selecting the perfect breeder. There are Shiloh Shepherd forums and social media groups where pet parents communicate with each other and can make breeder recommendations. Look for them to make an informed decision. 

Questions For Your Breeder

How much is a Shiloh Shepherd Puppy?

The average price of a Shiloh Shepherd puppy is $1,000. Some puppies can be as expensive as $3,000, especially if their parents were champions and are disease-free. 

Avoid resorting to the services of a backyard breeder because you can’t know what your canine friend’s health will look like. 

Besides the cost of buying the puppy, you will also have to pay for vet bills, which can cost around $500 a year. Expect to pay the same amount of money for food, treats, and toys. 

Grooming, socialization, and training services can cost you at least $700 per year.

shiloh shepherd pup on grass

What Shiloh Shepherd owners say:

Winnie is so much more than I had expected. I wanted a dog that was big enough to protect me, but I also wanted one that showed me affection. My girl is perfect in every way.
She’s a little possessive, especially if she feels that I might be in danger. She loves to spend time outdoors, so I make sure to take her for a long hike every weekend. At the end of the day, she loves her cuddles and makes my life so much better!
Rachel R.
Winnie's mom
We got Marty from the local humane society when he was just a couple of months old. He’s one of the best dogs we’ve had so far - easy to train, very smart, friendly, and quite loving.
We love that he’s a rescue, but the next time we’re going to choose a breeder for health reasons. We love Marty to bits, and so do our other two dogs, Sheila and Kino.
shepherd owners
Dylan & Sandra M.
Marty's parents
shiloh shepherd in bown