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How Big Is A Wolf Compared To A German Shepherd?

It’s true that a wolf and a German shepherd have many similarities including looks and other features.

As german shepherds are direct descendants of the wolfdog, you can see where they get their looks from. 

Although they have several comparable features, they also have many differences. 

One of those differences is related to size. 

This article will not only show you the size comparisons between a wolf and a german shepherd, but you will learn about other comparisons as well.

How Big Is A Wolf Compared To A German Shepherd? white and grey wolf image

How big is a wolf compared to a german shepherd?

A wolf is larger than a german shepherd in overall length and height. Although a German shepherd is considered to be a medium to large dog, the wolf is still larger. One of the biggest differences between them is in weight. The wolf can weigh up to double the weight of a full-grown German shepherd. This is for both males and females. 

Wolf vs German shepherd statistics:

  • German shepherd height – males 24-26 inches – females 22-24 inches
  • German shepherd length – 36-42 inches 
  • German shepherd weight – males 66-90 pounds – females 49 – 71 pounds
  • German shepherd paw size – medium to large 3-4 inches
  • German shepherd teeth – 42 total with 238 psi bite force
  • German shepherd tail length – 9-14 inches
  • Wolf height – 31-33 inches
  • Wolf length – 41-63 inches
  • Wolf weight – males 65-180 pounds – females 50-120 pounds
  • Wolf paw size – large size 4-5 inches
  • Wolf teeth – 42 total with 400 psi bite force

Although the wolf and german shepherd have the same number of teeth, the wolf’s teeth are larger in size. 

  • Wolf tail length – 11-20 inches

German ShepherdWolf
Height24-26 inches(m) 22-24 inches(f)31-33 inches
Length36-42 inches41-63 inches
Weight66-90 lbs(m) 49-71 lbs(f)65-180 lbs(m) 50-120 lbs(f)
Paw size3-4 inches4-5 inches
# of teeth42 – 238 psi bite force42 – 400 psi bite force
Tail length9-14 inches11-20 inches

wolf standing on a mountain top

Wolf vs german shepherd – other comparisons

Other than size, you can compare the wolf and German shepherd in other ways.  

Diet

The wolf lives in the wild and is a carnivore. 

Wolves are scavengers and hunters with their diet consisting mainly of other animals in the wild that they can catch. 

This includes small rodents and large mammals. 

Rabbits, beavers, elk, bison, sheep, and deer are popular favorites. 

They are also known to eat wild berries in certain areas of the world.

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As german shepherds are considered to be household pets, they are normally fed commercial foods made for dogs. 

These foods are made with high-quality proteins in both dry and wet form. 

Unlike the wolf, the German shepherd is an omnivore meaning they can eat a variety of both meat and plant products. 

Although most people feed them commercial products, german shepherds can also eat human foods like chicken, beef, fish, pork, along with fruits and vegetables. 

A wolf can stand 33 inches tall and 63 inches long.

Color

The most common color for a German shepherd is black and tan with others having red, silver, gray, white, and black mix. 

A common color for a wolf is gray and white with others having black, brown, and tan colors mixed in.

German shepherd laying in grass

Temperament and behavior

This is one area where a German shepherd and a wolf are complete opposites. 

The wolf is a wild animal and can be very aggressive unless they are in a pack with other wolves. 

They should never be trusted around humans or other animals as they are not social in any way.

The German shepherd is a popular dog kept as pets and is generally peaceful and gets along well with humans and other animals. 

They are not known to be aggressive and will mix with other household pets and children. 

Of course, not all dogs are the same with respect to behavior patterns and should be properly trained to teach social skills and human interaction. 

Speed

Wolves are not known as fast-running animals but they can reach speeds of 30-40 mph for short periods of time. 

This speed is normally achieved when chasing prey.

German shepherds are considered to be fast-running dogs. 

Although they can sustain a running speed of around 15-20 mph, they can run as fast as 30 mph for a short time. 

Overall, a wolf is faster than a german shepherd. 

A German shepherd’s tail can be up to 14 inches long.

Life span

The lifespan of a German shepherd can vary based on a number of things. 

But on average, they will live between 9-12 years. It’s possible for some to reach 13-14 years old but it’s not common.

In most cases, a wolf will live longer than the German shepherd averaging 14-16 years. 

They can live closer to 16 years in captivity and 14 years in the wild.

Population

The number of German shepherds in the world is estimated to be over 10 million with 3.5 million of them being in the USA. 

This is just under 5% of the total dog population in the USA.

The wolf population is much less than the German shepherd.

It’s not known exactly how many wolves are in the world but it is estimated to be between 250,000-300,000. 

The wolf population in the USA alone is dropping by 27-33% as more states continue to allow them to be hunted. 

pack of wolves in forest

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