"Where Paradise is Just a Howl Away"

Wolf-Like Dog Breeds--

There are dozens of breeds of dogs that happen to have a wolf-like appearance. While wolves can produce offspring with any breed of dog, it is these wolfy breeds that are the most common crosses in wolfdogs we see today. These breeds and their like are also most often labeled as wolfdogs, either knowingly or unknowingly. 

These are the most popular breeds to be crossed with wolf.

None of the animals on this page are wolfdogs of any kind.


Northern Breeds

Siberian Huskies, and huskies in general, are the most common breed used to create wolfdogs

Pros-- With their pricked ears, fox-like face and thick plush fur, they posses the wild wolf-like appearance that's highly desired among wolfdog people. They also have a fun, friendly nature and are known to be hard workers.

Cons-- Huskies can also be incredibly stubborn and training them takes a lot of time and patience. They have a strong prey drive and therefore posses a powerful instinct to grab small things with their teeth. Most don't do well with cats, small dogs or small children.

Passable Dog Traits:
~ blue, bi or parti-colored eyes (a recessive trait that is only expressed when both parents carry the gene)

~ sharp, contrasting mask

~ a sickle tail

~ pink or piebald foot-pads

~ white-tipped tail

~ liver or snow nose 

~ small stature  

~ small, rounded paws

More on Siberian Huskies: http://www.dogbreedinfo.com/siberianhusky.htm

From top to bottom: 

Standard Pure Siberian HuskiesRacing Husky and Woolly Siberian Husky (fault)


Husky Colors

Similar Breeds:

~ Woolly Siberian Husky: http://www.huskycolors.com/wooly.html

~ Alaskan Husky: http://www.dogbreedinfo.com/alaskanhusky.htm

See Also:

~ Native American Indian Dog: http://www.dogbreedinfo.com/nativeamericanindiandog.htm

~ Chinook: http://www.dogbreedinfo.com/chinook.htm


From top to bottom:

Alaskan Husky, Native American Indian Dog and Chinook



The Giant Woolly Malamute is becoming a popular breed to cross with wolf due to its massive size, accredited to several different breeds used to add size and fluff to the giant woolly malamute; among them are the Great Pyrenees and Newfoundland *note that some traits from these breeds may be noticeable in a malamute/wolf cross*.  

Pros-- Possessing the same desired wolf-like look of the Husky, with its erect ears and thick coat, the giant malamute also adds size to the hybrid vigor of the wolfdog. Along with being huge, these crosses are generally lazy, calm giants.

Cons-- Much like the husky, the malamute is also known for its acute stubbornness. Resistance to being manipulated may also result in this big canine using his size to his advantage. They also tend to be territorial and somewhat overprotective of the family. They eat a lot.

Passable Dog Traits--

~ Thick curly tail

~ droopy face and lips

drooling problems

~ "Gremlin" ears (long, feathery whisps of hair along the edge and base of the ear; also seen in woolly husky crosses)

~ brown eyes

 ~ wide skull

~ fat legs

~ barrel chest

More on Giant Woolly Alaskan Malamutes: 


From top to bottom: 

Woolly Malamute, Off-Standard Pure Malamute and Standard Pure Malamute

Similar Breeds:

~ Standard Alaskan Malamute: http://www.dogbreedinfo.com/alaskanmalamute.htm

See Also:

~ Northern Inuit Dog: http://www.dogbreedinfo.com/northerninuitdog.htm

~ British Timber Dog: http://www.britishtimberdog.org.uk/index.html


Pictured from top to bottom:

Northern Inuit Dog and British Lupine Dog




Shepherd Breeds

The German Shepherd Dog was once the most popular breed chosen for wolf/dog out-crossings, and this breed is also responsible for the creation of the 2 only recognized wolfdog breeds today; the Saarloos Wolfhound and the Czech Vlcak.

Pros-- The German Shepherd Dog is fiercely intelligent and incredibly loyal to his family. He is also very protective of his home and pack. Appearance-wise, they posses the thicker coats and pricked ears of their northern breed cousins. Shepherds also posses flat skulls and large bones.

Cons-- The Shepherd's intelligence does not present itself in a trainable form until the animal is around 2 years old, as this is when the dog becomes mentally mature; his protection skills can become problematic as many shepherds tend to perceive everything as a potential threat to his family and as a result may end up biting someone. German Shepherds are also known for their genetic health problems, such as hip dysplasia.

Passable Dog Traits--

~ Late-maturing ears

~ tall thin fur-less ears

~ strong Shepherd look 

~ genetic issues

~ aggression issues

More on German Shepherd Dogs: 


From top to bottom: 

Standard Black and Tan, Off-Standard Black and American White

From top to bottom:

Dutch Shepherd, Swiss Shepherd, Shiloh Shepherd, Blue Bay Shepherd, American Alsatian and Tamaskan



The Groenendael, also known as a the Belgian Sheepdog or Belgian Shepherd, and its kin, are a fairly new breed that is currently being used in wolfdog breeding programs.

Pros-- Along with a fabulous family-oriented temperament and sweet demenor, the Groenendael posses some beautiful and sought-after physical qualities. It's long flat skull, long flowing fur, slender legs and overall wolf-like appearance make this handsome black dog a fine choice for a wolf/dog outcrossing.

Cons-- Poor availability make this breed and its like hard to find, and you may likely have to import from a European breeder.

Passable Dog Traits--

~ Long, feathery fur

~ feathery tail and legs 

~ K Mutation gene that causes a non-phasing black coat

~ dark eyes

~ pointed large ears

More on Groenendaels: http://www.dogbreedinfo.com/belgiangroenendael.htm

Similar Breeds:

~ Belgian Tervueren: http://www.dogbreedinfo.com/belgiantervueren.htm

~ Belgian Malinois: http://www.dogbreedinfo.com/belgianmalinois.htm


From top to bottom:

Belgian Tervueren and Belgian Malinois




Spitz Breeds

The Japanese Akita, though not as commonly used, is another breed seen in wolfdogs today.

Pros--- The Akita resembles its sled-pulling cousins, the husky and the malamute, in many respects, including the erect, furry bear-like ears and the thick coat. The Akita also expresses extreme loyalty, usually to just one person.

Cons--- The Akita is known for his aggression and does not hesitate to bite those who are not part of his pack. He also exhibits many physical and behavioral characteristics of the bully-type breeds used to create the Akita.

Passable Dog Traits--

~ Aggression/bite tendency

~ floppy face/head skin

~ tight curly tail

~ color patches on a white coat

More on Japanese Akitas: http://www.dogbreedinfo.com/akita.htm

From top to bottom:

Akita Inu, Shiba Inu and Chow Chow


Norwegian Elkhounds are not a common breed to cross, but they are slowly gaining popularity.

Pros-- Like all the breeds on this page, the Elkhound posses the wolf-look in the form of his pricked ears, thick plush coat and blended coat of agouti coloring. The Elkhound's wolf-like fur color and relatively taunt face give it a wild look.

Cons-- N/A

Passable Dog Traits-- 

~ Curly tail

~ brown eyes

~ pointy ears

~ small stature

More on Norwegian Elkhounds: http://www.dogbreedinfo.com/norwegianelkhound.htm

See Also:

~ West Siberian Laika: http://www.dogbreedinfo.com/westsiberianlaika.htm

~ Finnish Spitz: http://www.dogbreedinfo.com/finnishspitz.htm

~ Karelian Bear Dog: http://www.dogbreedinfo.com/karelianbeardog.htm


From top to bottom:

West Siberian Laikas, Finnish Spitz and Karelian Bear Dog

Note the wolfy likeness of the Siberian Laikas; a perfect example of how a wolfy-looking dog can sometimes appear more lupine than an actual verified  low or mid content wolfdog!



Samoyeds are a popular choice when it comes to breeding for that Arctic-type look.

Pros-- Erect ears, long fluffy white fur and a friendly face have a lot to offer when it comes to cross-breeding this dog. This breed also has a friendly disposition.

Cons-- N/A

Passable Dog Traits:

~ Tightly curled tail

~ feathery fur on tail/body/legs

~ brown eyes

~ short legs

~ very small compared to the other crossings

More on Samoyeds: http://www.dogbreedinfo.com/samoyed.htm

Similar Breeds:

~ American Eskimo Dog: http://www.dogbreedinfo.com/americaneskimo.htm

~ Keeshond: http://www.dogbreedinfo.com/keeshond.htm

~ Finnish Lapphund: http://www.akc.org/breeds/finnish_lapphund/index.cfm


From top to bottom:

American Eskimo Dog, Keeshond and Finnish Lapphund




Other Breeds

Any breed of dog can be used to create wolfdogs (recent attempts at crossing wolves with Labradors and Poodles are present in Europe), but most of the time, prick-ear dogs are preferred. Rough Collies and other stock dog breeds and Carolina Dogs are not uncommon crosses. It is incredibly rare to find a breeder who admits to having such unorthodox breeds in their lines; such breed crosses are more often than not misrepresented as "Red" wolf crosses. 

*****See my Pure Wolves page for more information on Red wolves.

~ Rough Collies: http://www.dogbreedinfo.com/collie.htm

~ Australian Cattle Dog: http://www.dogbreedinfo.com/australiancattledog.htm

~ Australian Kelpie: http://www.dogbreedinfo.com/australiankelpie.htm

~ Carolina Dog: http://www.dogbreedinfo.com/carolinadog.htm

Tri-Colored Rough Collie

Ears are unbroken

Red Australian Cattle Dog

Australian Kelpie

Carolina Dog




Wolfdog Breeds

There are now two recognized "Wolfdog" Breeds. These two breeds are true dogs and are not considered 'hybrids' of any kind.

~ Czechoslovakian Wolfdog : http://inetdesign.com/wolfdunn/breeds/czechwd.html

~ Saarloos Wolfdog: http://inetdesign.com/wolfdunn/breeds/saarloos.html

Czechoslovakian Wolfdog, also known as the Czech Vlcak

Saarloos Wolfdog, also known as the Saarloos Wolfhund


The dogs pictured above are purebreds of the breed standard. 

Those purebred dogs all resemble wolves in many respects, and the off-standard versions of those breeds can resemble wolves even closer. 

What's more, if any of those breeds cross with one another, their resulting pups CAN AND OFTEN ARE mistaken for/misrepresented as wolfdogs. 

Malamute crossed with Husky

Shepherd crossed with Husky

Shepherd and Husky crossed with Malamute

Truth is, even verified low-content wolfdogs and some mid-content wolfdogs can be mistaken for carbon-copies of the aforementioned breeds, the off-standards of said breeds, or crosses of said breeds. 

In many respects, raising, feeding, containing  and training a low or lower-mid content wolfdog is essentially the same as raising a puppy of one of the breeds on this page.