German Shepherd vs Dalmatian

Breed Snapshot

Life Expectancy:
12 to 14 years
Size:

Large

Maintenance Level:

High

Shed Level:

Very High

Best For

German Shepherds are best for active households and experienced pet parents who are ready to train this highly-active pup.

German Shepherd Temperament

Born guardians, the German Shepherd’s best trait is their intense, unwavering loyalty to their families. (There’s a reason they make some of the best police dogs.) The fearless breed has also been known to put themselves in harm’s way before they let a family member get hur...

Born guardians, the German Shepherd’s best trait is their intense, unwavering loyalty to their families. (There’s a reason they make some of the best police dogs.) The fearless breed has also been known to put themselves in harm’s way before they let a family member get hurt.

Not surprisingly, friendliness is not the German Shepherd dog breed’s strong suit. They can be aloof, and you definitely have to earn their trust. Naturally wary of strangers, a German Shepherd will default to “guard dog mode” if they believe their family is in danger.

Early social interactions with kids, babies and other animals is also important if you want your German Shepherd to be well-behaved around guests. With the proper education, this easy-to-train pup can be a great family dog.

German Shepherds are born talkers. They will bark when they’re bored, and they’ll bark to alert you if something isn’t quite right. But training and exercise can help curb a lippy pup and keep their barking to when you need it the most.

These dogs are incredibly smart, and they are at their best when they have a job to do, whether working as a police or military dog, doing tracking or search and rescue, serving as a guide dog or at home practicing scent work or solving puzzles for a treat. And when they’re with their family, German Shepherds will let their silly side show as they flip their toys in the air and roll around on their backs.

German Shepherd Traits

Friendliness
Exercise Needs
Health Issues
Barking Tendencies
Grooming Needs
Shedding Level
Training Needs
Good With Kids
Good With Cats
Good As A Service Dog
Good For Apartments & Small Homes
Biting Tendencies
Energy Level
Good With Other Dogs
Playfulness
Sensitive to Cold Weather
Sensitive to Warm Weather
Good For First Time Pet Parents

Breed Snapshot

Life Expectancy:
11 to 13 years
Size:

Medium

Maintenance Level:

Medium

Shed Level:

Medium

Best For

Dalmatians are best for active pet parents who love to run or hike, are willing to provide consistent training and live in a home with a large backyard.

Dalmatian Temperament

An outgoing personality and a curious mind are a big part of a Dalmatian’s temperament. With a smart and friendly demeanor, the Dalmatian breed rates highly as a pup who’s a good pick for kids. Fortunately, biting isn’t a common problem with this pet, though early and...

An outgoing personality and a curious mind are a big part of a Dalmatian’s temperament. With a smart and friendly demeanor, the Dalmatian breed rates highly as a pup who’s a good pick for kids. Fortunately, biting isn’t a common problem with this pet, though early and consistent training is still recommended. A Dal may show wariness and even aggression toward strangers; they were bred to guard and protect animals (namely horses), so teaching this canine from puppyhood to become used to new people, places and things is ideal.

The Dalmatian breed is quite competent and will pick up on the various commands and cues in obedience class as they love to learn and play. And if lots of exercise is added to the mix, you’ll allow your Dal to work to their full potential and use their deep energy reserves. Remember—a happy dog is a tired dog!

Dalmatians need human companionship and won’t be happy if you leave them to play by themselves in the backyard. These active pups want to be active with you. Be sure you include them in all your fun.

Other important Dalmatian qualities include a playful nature and the ability to get along with cats and other dogs in the home. But because they’re so high energy, space to run and roam is important. A Dalmatian dog is happiest and best served in a home with access to outdoor space, a yard or large dog run where they can frolic.

Dalmatian intelligence is apparent as this dog’s backstory is one of extensive service. Bred to trot alongside horse-drawn carriages, they’ve worked closely with firefighters, marched in parades and even taken a turn in the spotlight as a circus dog. The Dalmatian is truly one of a kind.

Dalmatian Traits

Friendliness
Exercise Needs
Health Issues
Barking Tendencies
Grooming Needs
Shedding Level
Training Needs
Good With Kids
Good With Cats
Good As A Service Dog
Good For Apartments & Small Homes
Biting Tendencies
Energy Level
Good With Other Dogs
Playfulness
Sensitive to Cold Weather
Sensitive to Warm Weather
Good For First Time Pet Parents
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