All You Need to Know About the Shiloh Shepherd Dog Breed

Shiloh Shepherds are a breed of dog that has gained popularity in recent years. They are praised for their loyalty, intelligence, and affectionate nature. This article will provide you with a comprehensive guide on everything there is to know about this breed, including its history, physical characteristics, personality, temperament, health, and lifespan.

History of the Shiloh Shepherd Dog Breed

The Shiloh Shepherd is a relatively new breed of dog that was developed in the 1970s by Tina Barber. She aimed to create a larger and healthier version of the traditional German Shepherd dog. Her goal was to produce a dog that had the intelligence, trainability, and temperament of the German Shepherd, but without the health problems and hip dysplasia commonly seen in this breed.

Origins and Development

The Shiloh Shepherd breed was developed by crossing German Shepherds with Alaskan Malamutes, Great Pyrenees, and a few other breeds. This was done to make the breed larger and give it a more wolf-like appearance. The Alaskan Malamute was chosen for its strength and endurance, while the Great Pyrenees was chosen for its calm and protective nature. These breeds were carefully selected to improve the health and temperament of the Shiloh Shepherd.

Barber’s breeding program was a success, and the Shiloh Shepherd quickly gained popularity among dog enthusiasts. The breed was known for its large size, intelligence, and loyalty. The Shiloh Shepherd was also praised for its calm and gentle nature, making it an excellent family pet.

Recognition as a Distinct Breed

The Shiloh Shepherd was recognized as a distinct breed by the International Shiloh Shepherd Registry in 1990. This recognition was a significant milestone for the breed, as it helped to establish the Shiloh Shepherd as a legitimate and unique breed. Since then, the breed has continued to gain popularity, with breeders working towards improving the breed’s health, temperament, and conformation.

The Shiloh Shepherd is now recognized by several major dog organizations, including the American Rare Breed Association and the United Kennel Club. The breed is known for its intelligence, loyalty, and protective nature, making it a popular choice for families and law enforcement agencies alike.

In conclusion, the Shiloh Shepherd is a fascinating breed of dog that was developed with a specific goal in mind. Through careful breeding and selection, the breed has become known for its large size, intelligence, and gentle nature. The recognition of the Shiloh Shepherd as a distinct breed has helped to establish it as a legitimate and unique breed, and its popularity continues to grow with each passing year.

Physical Characteristics

Shiloh Shepherds are one of the most majestic dog breeds out there. They are a large breed that can weigh between 80 and 130 pounds. They have a muscular build and a broad head with erect ears that make them look like wolves. Their coat is thick and can be either long or short, which makes them look even more majestic.

Shiloh Shepherds are a great choice for anyone looking for a large, loyal, and protective dog. They are also great with children and make excellent family pets.

Size and Weight

As mentioned earlier, Shiloh Shepherds are one of the largest breeds of dog. They are a giant breed that can weigh between 100 and 130 pounds for males and between 80 and 100 pounds for females. They stand between 26 and 30 inches tall at the shoulders, making them truly a giant breed.

Despite their size, Shiloh Shepherds are very agile and can move quickly when needed. They are also very intelligent and can be trained to do many different tasks.

Coat and Colors

The Shiloh Shepherd has a double coat that can be either long or short. The fur is coarse and thick, with a soft undercoat that provides insulation. This coat helps them stay warm in cold weather and keeps them cool in hot weather. It also makes them look even more majestic.

Shiloh Shepherds come in a variety of colors, including black, brown, red, and white. Some have a solid color coat, while others have a mix of colors. No matter what color their coat is, they always look stunning.

Distinct Features

One of the most distinctive physical features of the Shiloh Shepherd is its wolf-like appearance. They have a broad head with erect ears and a powerful, muscular body. This wolf-like appearance makes them look fierce, but in reality, they are very gentle and loyal dogs.

Another distinctive feature of the Shiloh Shepherd is their thick, double coat. This coat not only makes them look more majestic, but it also helps protect them from the elements. It also makes them shed a lot, so be prepared to brush them regularly.

Overall, the Shiloh Shepherd is a truly magnificent breed that is sure to turn heads wherever they go. They are loyal, protective, and make great family pets. If you’re looking for a giant breed that will steal your heart, look no further than the Shiloh Shepherd.

Personality and Temperament

The Shiloh Shepherd is a very loyal and affectionate breed of dog. They are known for their intelligence, obedience, and trainability. They have a calm and confident demeanor, which makes them excellent as family pets, therapy dogs, or service animals.

These dogs are also known for their gentle nature and are often used as therapy dogs for children or adults with special needs. They have a calming effect on people and are very patient and understanding.

Shiloh Shepherds are also very protective of their families and will do whatever it takes to keep them safe. They are not aggressive by nature, but if they sense a threat to their family, they will not hesitate to defend them.

General Disposition

Shiloh Shepherds have a calm and steady disposition that makes them excellent as family pets. They are very adaptable and can live in a variety of different environments, from apartments to large homes with plenty of space to run and play.

These dogs are also very affectionate and love to cuddle with their owners. They thrive on human interaction and need to be around their families as much as possible.

Despite their large size, Shiloh Shepherds are gentle giants and are great with children. They are patient and tolerant and will often let children climb all over them without getting upset.

Intelligence and Trainability

Shiloh Shepherds are highly intelligent dogs that are quick learners. They are very responsive to positive reinforcement training and enjoy learning new things.

These dogs excel in obedience training and are often used as search and rescue dogs, police dogs, or service animals. They also do well in agility training and other dog sports.

Shiloh Shepherds have a strong desire to please their owners and will work hard to earn praise and rewards.

Socialization and Interaction with Other Animals

Shiloh Shepherds are very social dogs that love to interact with other animals. They do well in multi-dog households and get along well with cats and other pets if they are properly socialized from a young age.

These dogs also enjoy going to dog parks and playing with other dogs. They are very friendly and outgoing and will often make new friends wherever they go.

Overall, the Shiloh Shepherd is a wonderful breed of dog that makes an excellent companion for families or individuals. They are loyal, intelligent, and affectionate and will bring joy and happiness to anyone who welcomes them into their home.

Health and Lifespan

Like all purebred dogs, the Shiloh Shepherd is prone to certain health issues. However, thanks to the careful breeding practices of many Shiloh Shepherd breeders, the breed is generally healthy and free from many of the health problems seen in other large breed dogs.

Common Health Issues

The Shiloh Shepherd is prone to hip dysplasia, elbow dysplasia, and bloat. They are also at risk for certain genetic diseases, such as degenerative myelopathy and exocrine pancreatic insufficiency. It is important to purchase a puppy from a reputable breeder who screens their breeding dogs for these conditions.

Preventative Care and Regular Checkups

To keep your Shiloh Shepherd healthy, it is important to provide them with regular preventative care. This includes vaccinations, parasite prevention, and regular checkups with your veterinarian.

Expected Lifespan

The Shiloh Shepherd has an average lifespan of 10-13 years. With proper care and attention, many Shiloh Shepherds live long and healthy lives well into their senior years.


The Shiloh Shepherd is a beautiful and intelligent breed of dog that makes an excellent companion for families or individuals. Their loyal and affectionate nature, combined with their intelligence and trainability, make them highly sought after as family pets and service animals. If you are considering adding a Shiloh Shepherd to your family, be sure to do your research and choose a reputable breeder who prioritizes the health and well-being of their dogs.

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