Appenzell Mountain Dog vs German Shepherd - Breed Comparison

German Shepherd is originated from Germany but Appenzell Mountain Dog is originated from Switzerland. German Shepherd may grow 11 cm / 5 inches higher than Appenzell Mountain Dog. German Shepherd may weigh 12 kg / 27 pounds more than Appenzell Mountain Dog. Both German Shepherd and Appenzell Mountain Dog has almost same life span. German Shepherd may have more litter size than Appenzell Mountain Dog. German Shepherd requires Low Maintenance. But Appenzell Mountain Dog requires Moderate Maintenance

Basic Information

Herding dogs
Herding dogs
Height Male:
61 - 67 cm
24 - 27 inches
52 - 56 cm
20 - 23 inches
Height Female:
55 - 61 cm
21 - 25 inches
50 - 56 cm
19 - 23 inches
Weight Male:
34 - 44 kg
74 - 98 pounds
22 - 32 kg
48 - 71 pounds
Weight Female:
34 - 44 kg
74 - 98 pounds
22 - 32 kg
48 - 71 pounds
Life Span:
9 - 13 Years
12 - 14 Years
Litter Size:
1 - 15
4 - 6
Other Names:
Alsatian, Alsatian wolf dog, Berger Allemand, Deutscher Schaferhund, Schaferhund
Appenzeller Mountain Dog, Appenzeller Sennenhunde
Colors Available:
Black and Tan, Sable, Bicolor, Black and White
Black, white, tan
dense and thick, short, medium thick, thick and fluffy, long, furry around their chest, ears, tail or backs of their legs
Shortish, straight hair, dense
Constant, Seasonal
Moderate, Constant
Aggressive, Alert, Gentle, Intelligent, Loyal, Outgoing, Protective, Quiet
Affectionate, Alert, Cheerful, Courageous, Curious, Energetic, Friendly, Independent, Intelligent, Lively, Loving, Loyal, Outgoing, Playful, Protective, Responsive, Social, Territorial
Low Maintenance
Moderate Maintenance
Kids Friendly:
New Owners Friendly:



german shepherdIn 1882 german shepherd was introduced in a show at Hanover. They were created by the cross breeding of the rural sheep dogs by a man named Max. In 1906 they were first exported to America. After that the breed became very popular in UK.

Hailing from the Appenzell region of Switzerland and known as the Appenzeller Mountain Dog or the Appenzeller Sennenhunde, this athletic breed of dog has a history which is debatable and which has several theories.

It is believed the dog is descended from Molossus.The Appenzeller Mountain Dog is one of the 4 recognized Swiss Sennenhunds, appearing to have descended from cattle dogs. The first breed club was founded in 1906 by Albert Heim. However, an early reference to the breed's predecessors was made in a book of 1853, where it refers to dogs in the Appenzell region.

In 1898 the Appenzeller Mountain Dog was shown at the first international dog show and was recognized internationally as a separate breed in 1989.


german shepherd puppyThe GSD is very good for being a watchdog and hence it do not welcome guests to home. But when trained from a puppy it will suit itself for making new friends. GSD like to be always with somebody and they can be its master or his family members or else its partner. The GSD is very intelligent and active hence they should be always kept busy, exercised and playing. Nowadays many of them are trained well and made as four legged stars.

When we see all around the world many of them are involved in helping the physically challenged people. Also they are very important personnels in working with police and military for finding the criminals. Their excellent sniffing power works very good when given proper training for finding illegal smuggling. But basically the breed was set in to herd the sheep and protect them from predators.

Based on the popularity they are ranked 2nd in US and 4th in UK.

The Appenzell Mountain Dog is a medium-sized dog standing at between 47–58cm at the withers and weighing in at 22–32kg.

He is a heavy-built dog and sports a tri-color coat – black, tan and white. He has a double coat with the topcoat being shortish, thick and straight. He sheds throughout the year and isn’t hypoallergenic. He has small ears which are high set and which are floppy. The tail is long and curls when held high.


The Appenzell is an active breed who has been used to herding, fetching and working. Because of his energy levels, he won’t fit in well in a small home where his energy needs can’t be met. However wherever he is, he bonds closely with his human family and thrives on attention from them.

He isn’t known as an aggressive dog, but if as a working breed, he felt that the livestock he was guarding was under threat, he could exhibit some aggressiveness.

He gets on well with children in the home and other pets but is inclined to be wary of strangers. Just as with any other dog, training and socialization does wonders for him, making him relaxed and obedient around people and dogs.

Health Problems

german shepherd dogThe GSD has the chances for getting orthopaedic diseases such as hip dysplasia and elbow dysplasia. Other common orthopaedic problems which affects GSD are Panosteitis, Osteochondritis and cruciate ligament rupture.They also get some skin problems such as allergies and pyoderma. Digestive problems such as chronic diarrhea and colitis are also seen in GSD.

Hair fall

GSD is a continuous shedder. They are having a two layer coat. They should be brushed daily as it will remove the dead fur and thus prevents shedding.

There are some health problems with dogs which are inherited. It is why some people insist on getting certificates from breeders to show that the parents were cleared of certain diseases such as hip and elbow dysplasia.

Certainly, it’s a known fact that many health problems can be prevented by the way you feed your dog and the way you raise him.

If you suspect your pet is suffering with an ailment that is making him lethargic and run-down, get him to the vet immediately.

Caring The Pet

german shepherd puppiesThe GSD should be given an cool environment which they will enjoy a lot.

Feeding the puppy

The GSD puppy should be fed small quantities of food but several times per day as it needs to gain 2 gms weight per day. The preferred food for them is dry food along with raw liver pieces which would provide them excellent energy. The protein food given to puppy should contain 25 to 30% calories. Puppies consume more food when compared with adults.

Feeding the adult

The GSD needs a food which has a considerable amount of protein. They are carnivores in the nature. The protein can be given from cooked meat. The artificial food products will not be suitable for them. When are provided with protein food they will gain fat from itself. The recommended fat content for GSD is 5% to 8%.

Points for Good Health

The GSD should be provided with a nutritional food for their good health.

Games and Exercises

Physical exercises are very much needed for GSD since they are very energetic and power packed. It is highly recommended to make them play and run daily as they don't need to get bored. They can be made to climb in hilly areas as they want to explore their surroundings. They can be made to swim or play hide and seek and find the missing objects. Regular morning walk will be very good for them.


You want your Appenzell Mountain Dog to maintain his thick shiny coat, and because he sheds throughout the year, a good brushing twice a week will benefit him.

Dogs with hanging ears, such as this dog, are always more prone to ear infections, requiring more attention to the inside of the ears. Clean, dry ears resist ear infections.

The nails of the dog should also be trimmed when they become too long.


The Appenzeller is a working dog, used to being active all day, so he will require a lot of exercise. He just loves being outdoors, and while he adapts to city- and country life, he will prefer living in the country. Take him for walks, play ball with him and allow him to run with you when you go jogging or cycling.


A young adult Appenzeller Sennenhunde will require a different calorie intake compared to a dog that has been spayed or neutered or a puppy that is still growing. You need to watch your dog’s age, his size and the particular season of his life he is in and adjust his food intake.

Kibble is good and well, and there are excellent brands packed with nutrients, but your furry friend will require brown rice, vegetables and cooked chicken mixed into his kibble from time to time as well as raw meat added in when possible.

An excellent diet is important for the wellbeing of your pet, and always ensure that fresh, cool water is available.


Children friendliness

german shepherd dogsThe GSD is a very good child friendly dog, they love to play with kids.


They adopts both hot and cold climates, but they like cold weather very much and also their body is suitable for cold than hot.

Learning ability

The GSD has high ability to learn tricks and also they are interested in learning. As they have very high intelligence they learn very easily and quickly.

Herding dogs tend to be independent and somewhat reserved but the Appenzell Mountain Dog is social, outgoing and loving with his human family. When trained and socialized he gets on well with other pets as well as children in the home.

He is a working dog, and thrives on being active, so a good amount of exercise will be necessary. He is a courageous, affectionate dog and when you give him the right upbringing and treat him as he deserves to be treated, he becomes a splendid pet.

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