What Age Do German Shepherds Stop Growing ? Key Facts

Curiosity about “what age do German Shepherds stop growing?” is common among dog enthusiasts and prospective owners alike. Understanding this pivotal stage in a German Shepherd’s development not only ensures their optimal growth but also provides valuable insights into their overall health and well-being.

Exploring this topic unveils intriguing details about the growth patterns of these majestic canines, offering a glimpse into when they reach their physical maturity.

What Age do German Shepherds Stop Growing?

average size of german shepherd

German Shepherds, renowned for their intelligence and versatility, undergo significant growth during their early years. They usually attain their maximum height between the ages of 18 months and 2 years, while some may keep gaining muscular mass until they are about 3 years old. Genetics, nutrition, and overall health all have an impact on this growth trajectory.

To promote the best possible growth and development during this crucial time, owners should closely monitor their German Shepherd’s food and make sure they receive the necessary medical treatment. Owners may assist their German Shepherds in growing into healthy, proportionate adults by giving them the tools and direction they need.

Average Size of German Shepherd

Variations in gender and heredity contribute to the typical size of German Shepherds. German Shepherd females usually weighed between 50 and 70 pounds during the same era, while males typically weighed between 65 and 90 pounds and measured 24 to 26 inches at the shoulder. However, these are just averages, and individual dogs may fall outside these ranges.

How Big Do German Shepherds Get?

German Shepherds can grow quite large, especially males. At two or three years old, they usually achieve their maximum size. While their height at the shoulder ranges from 22 to 26 inches, and their weight can vary from 50 to 90 pounds, some exceptionally large individuals may exceed these averages. For them to grow into healthy, proportionate adults, exercise and proper diet are crucial.

German Shepherd vs American German Shepherd: What is the Difference?

how big do german shepherds get

German Shepherds and American German Shepherds, though sharing a common ancestry, have evolved to embody distinct characteristics shaped by their origins and breeding purposes. You will be able to recognize the distinctive qualities of these two popular dog breeds more fully thanks to this comparison.

Comparison Table:

AspectGerman ShepherdAmerican German Shepherd
OriginGermanyUnited States
PurposeHerding, police, and militaryCompanion and show dog
AppearanceStraighter back, fuller coatSloping back, less coat
TemperamentIntelligent, loyal, protectiveFriendly, adaptable
SizeGenerally largerSlightly smaller
Working AbilityStrong herding instinctsVersatile, adaptable
Health ConcernsHip dysplasia, bloatingSimilar health concerns

While German Shepherds and American German Shepherds share a lineage, they diverge in appearance, temperament, and purpose. Selecting the right breed to enhance one’s life and fulfill individual requirements requires an awareness of these distinctions, regardless of whether one is looking for a devoted workmate or an amiable friend.

How Much Exercise does a German Shepherd Need?

German Shepherd common health issues

German Shepherds are intelligent, energetic canines that require frequent exercise to maintain good physical and mental health. As a highly active breed, they typically require a minimum of 1-2 hours of exercise each day. Combinations of exercises including jogging, trekking, fast walks, and interactive playtime should be a part of this workout regimen.

In order to avoid boredom and undesired behaviors, mental stimulation via training exercises, puzzle toys, and agility courses is also crucial. For dogs to continue being happy, healthy, and balanced companions, the exercise program must be customized to the dog’s age, health, and degree of fitness.

Exercise on a regular basis helps maintain the German Shepherd and its owner’s bond stronger in addition to keeping them physically healthy.

German Shepherd Common Health Issues

The following is a detailed inventory of German Shepherd health problems that we should consider.

  • Hip dysplasia: A hereditary condition where the hip joint doesn’t develop properly, leading to discomfort, lameness, and arthritis.
  • Elbow dysplasia: Similar to hip dysplasia but affecting the elbow joint, causing pain and lameness.
  • Degenerative myelopathy: A progressive spinal cord illness that causes hind limb weakening and paralysis.
  • Gastric dilatation-Volvulus (Bloat): A life-threatening condition where the stomach fills with gas and twists, leading to bloating, abdominal pain, and shock.
  • Exocrine pancreatic insufficiency (EPI): A disorder where the pancreas fails to produce enough digestive enzymes, resulting in malnutrition and weight loss.
  • Panosteitis: Commonly known as “growing pains,” this condition causes lameness and pain in the long bones of young, growing dogs.
  • Allergies: Allergies to food, environment, or fleas can affect German Shepherds and cause itching, skin irritation, and discomfort.
  • Degenerative joint disease (Osteoarthritis): A progressive condition where the cartilage within the joints deteriorates, resulting in pain, stiffness, and reduced mobility.
  • Hemophilia: A genetic bleeding disorder where blood doesn’t clot properly, leading to prolonged bleeding even from minor injuries.
  • Pancreatitis: Inflammation of the pancreas, often caused by dietary indiscretion or high-fat diets, resulting in abdominal pain, vomiting, and diarrhea.
  • Epilepsy: German Shepherds can be prone to seizures, which may be genetic or idiopathic (of unknown cause).
  • Hypothyroidism: An underactive thyroid gland can lead to weight gain, lethargy, and skin problems in German Shepherds.

Maintaining the health and well-being of German Shepherds and reducing the danger of these prevalent health conditions requires regular veterinary check-ups, appropriate nutrition, exercise, and acceptable breeding methods.

Life Expectancy of German Shepherd

German Shepherd lifespans normally vary from 9 to 13 years, depending on a number of factors including genetics, nutrition, activity, health treatment, and general quality of life. Providing proper nutrition, regular veterinary care, mental and physical stimulation, and a loving environment can help maximize their lifespan and ensure a happy, healthy life for your German Shepherd companion.


Understanding “what age do German Shepherds stop growing” is vital for their well-being. Knowing they generally cease growing around 18 months to 2 years aids in providing optimal care during this phase. This awareness enables owners to support their German Shepherds as they mature, ensuring a healthy transition into adulthood and a lifetime of cherished companionship.

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