Our neighbor’s German Shepherd (GSD) has regular grooming appointments, which made me wonder how different their coats must be to need such special care. After talking with my neighbor, I decided to post about the things you should do (and not do) to make sure your GSD stays healthy and looks good. In this blog post, we’ll go over the 10 dos and don’ts of caring for a German Shepherd’s coat.
Are German Shepherds high maintenance?
German Shepherds are often considered to be high-maintenance dogs, but this reputation is not entirely deserved.
While GSDs do require more care and attention than some other breeds, they are also incredibly loyal and intelligent dogs that make great companions. One of the most important things to remember when owning a GSD is that they need plenty of exercise.
A bored GSD is likely to become destructive, so it is important to provide them with plenty of opportunities to run and play. GSDs require regular grooming and brushing, especially if they have longer hair. However, with a little bit of care and attention, a German Shepherd can make a wonderful addition to any family.
If you’re lucky enough to have a German Shepherd as part of your family, there are a few things you should know about caring for their coat:
DO brush your GSD regularly
One important way to take care of your German Shepherd is to brush its coat regularly. This will help to remove any dirt, debris, or mats that may have become tangled in the fur.
Brushing also helps to distribute the natural oils produced by the skin, which can keep the coat healthy and shiny. Regular brushing provides an opportunity to check for any signs of injury or illness, such as lumps, bumps, or rashes. While it is important to brush your German Shepherd regularly, it is also important to be gentle and avoid causing pain. If you are unsure of how to properly brush your dog’s coat, ask a vet or groomer for guidance. I’ve included relevant product recommendations at the bottom of this post.
DO consider your GSD double coat
German Shepherds have a double coat which is one of their most distinguishing features. The outer coat is made up of long, thick hairs, while the undercoat is shorter and softer.
This combination provides German Shepherds with excellent insulation against the cold, but it also requires special care to keep the coat healthy and free of tangles.
German Shepherds should be brushed regularly to remove dead hair and prevent matting. The frequency of brushing will depend on the individual dog’s coat type, but it is generally recommended that German Shepherds be brushed at least once a week.
DO trim off mats and other areas as needed
Mats can be painful for your dog and can lead to skin irritation and infection. Tangles, meanwhile, can make it difficult for your dog to move freely and can cause discomfort. Regular grooming will help to keep your German Shepherd’s coat healthy and free of mats and tangles. In addition, trimming off any excess hair will help to keep your dog cool in the summer months. So don’t forget to give your German Shepherd a regular trim – it’s good for their health!
DO groom more often during peak shedding times
Shedding is a normal part of the hair growth cycle, and German Shepherds shed year-round. However, they shed more heavily twice a year, in the spring and fall.
During these times, it’s important to groom your dog more often to help remove the loose hair. Brushing will also help to redistribute the natural oils in your dog’s skin, keeping the coat healthy and preventing excessive shedding.
DO bathe them when necessary
While German Shepherds are certainly known for being among the cleanest of dog breeds, there are still times when they will need a bath. If your dog has been rolling in mud or playing in the rain, for instance, then it’s probably time for a bath.
You should also bathe your dog if he starts to develop an unpleasant odor. In general, German Shepherds only need to be bathed once every few months.
However, you may need to bathe them more often if they have a particularly oily coat or if they tend to get dirty easily. When bathing your German Shepherd, be sure to use a shampoo that is designed specifically for dogs. Human shampoos can be harsh on a dog’s skin and coat.
German Shepherds require special care when it comes to grooming. Here are three things that you should avoid doing when caring for a German Shepherd’s coat:
DON’T shave your GSD
Many people believe that it is necessary to shave their German Shepherd to keep them cool during the summer months.
This is a harmful practice that can cause several problems for your dog. Shaving removes the critical top layer of your dog’s coat, which is designed to protect against UV rays, insects, and other environmental hazards.
Without this protective layer, your dog will be more susceptible to sunburn, skin irritation, and parasites. Shaving also disrupts the coat’s natural Insulation, making it more difficult for your dog to stay cool in the summer and warm in the winter.
DON’T trim their fur too short
Their coat helps to keep them warm in the winter and cool in the summer. It also provides some protection against scrapes and bruises. For these reasons, it’s important not to trim your German Shepherd’s fur too short. Doing so could leave them feeling uncomfortable in different weather conditions and vulnerable to injury.
DON’T allow their fur to mat
If left unchecked, the long hair of these dogs can quickly become matted and tangled. This not only looks unsightly, but it can also be painful for the dog. mats can pull on the skin and cause irritation, and they can also make it difficult for the dog to move freely.
Mats can also trap dirt, bacteria, and other harmful substances, which can lead to skin infections. For these reasons, it is important to regularly brush your German Shepherd’s fur and to have it clipped or trimmed regularly.
DON’T bathe them too often
One of the most important things to remember is not to bathe your German Shepherd too often. Doing so can strip away the natural oils that help to keep the coat healthy and shiny. Instead, aim to bathe your German Shepherd every few months, or as needed.
DON’T be afraid to use a groomer as needed
While many German Shepherd owners are able to groom their dogs themselves, there are times when it’s best to leave it to the professionals.
Dog groomers have the experience and expertise to properly groom your German Shepherd, and they can also provide helpful tips on how to maintain the health of your dog’s coat.
If you’re unsure about whether or not to use a dog groomer, ask your veterinarian for advice. They can help you assess your German Shepherd’s individual needs and make recommendations based on their experience.
German Shepherds are big dogs that require regular grooming to maintain their sleek coats. Although they don’t need to be bathed as often as some other breeds, they do need to be brushed regularly to prevent mats and tangles. The following is a list of the top five best German Shepherd grooming tools:
An essential tool for any dog owner, and it’s especially important for German Shepherd owners. A slicker brush, like this one from Hertzko, will help to remove loose hair, dirt, and debris from your dog’s coat.
A de-shedding brush can also be helpful for German Shepherds. This type of brush helps to remove the thick undercoat, which can reduce shedding. There are many brands of de-shedding tools, but this one is seriously highly rated at a good price.
A mat splitter can be used to carefully remove mats and tangles from your dog’s coat. Mat splitters like this one from Mikki are ergonomically designed and easily cut through tough mats safely.
A pair of grooming scissors can be helpful for trimming your dog’s fur as needed. Most grooming scissors come as part of a set with combs and specialized sheers. This Gimars set is highly rated and a best seller.
Shampoo and conditioner
Good quality shampoo and conditioner are important for keeping your German Shepherd’s coat healthy and looking its best. Your local pet store and veterinarian can offer the best quality for your specific climate conditions and your German Shepherd’s needs.
All in all, taking care of a GSD’s coat is not as daunting as it may seem. With regular brushing, occasional trimming, and bathing when necessary, your GSD can maintain a healthy and beautiful coat. And don’t forget the importance of using the right grooming tools – they’ll make the job a lot easier!