Your Guide To German Shepherd Shedding
Intelligent and easily trained, a German Shepherd is one of the most popular breeds among dog lovers. German Shepherds are active, courageous, and excel in almost all activities. If you already own one, you will already know how protective they are. You may also know how much they tend to shed.
If you plan on becoming a German Shepherd owner, you should be prepared for your dog’s shedding. In this article, we will discuss how to deal with your German Shepherd shedding and how it should not be a big problem.
Why do German Shepherds shed?
The coats of German Shepherds can vary in length and color. There are German Shepherds with a short coat and an undercoat, medium coat with an undercoat, long coat with an undercoat, and a long coat without an undercoat. This dog breed has two layers of coat: a topcoat or guard coat and an undercoat. Its topcoat is usually thick, straight, flat, and coarse and lies close to the body. It can also be wavy and wiry in texture. On the other hand, the undercoat is soft and thicker than the topcoat.
Just like many other dog breeds, German Shepherds also experience shedding. There are a number of reasons why their hair falls off but the most common reason is to protect them from the changing seasons. Their coat serves as protection from the harsh weather, be it the cold or the heat of the sun. It acts as a regulator for their body temperature.
Another reason for their shedding is their overall health. There might be times when your German Shepherd can experience excessive shedding and this might be because of an underlying health reason such as stress, allergies, pain, hormonal changes, or fleas, parasites, or ticks. If your dog’s excessive shedding is caused by one of these reasons, you should already consult your vet for a proper consultation and medication.
When do German Shepherds shed?
German Shepherds tend to shed their coats all-year-round. This is the reason why they are sometimes called “German Shedders.” Their coat responds naturally to daylight so when days start to get shorter and winter is fast approaching, German Shepherds will shed their summer coat and grow a new winter coat. You should get ready for a massive shedding during the fall.
Similarly, you need to be also prepared when your German Shepherd blows its coat during spring since, during this time, days will become longer and it will have to get rid of its winter coat.
How long do German Shepherds shed?
German Shepherds shed their coats all year long but they blow their coats twice a year. During these times, it will take 10 days or more to shed their undercoat.
How much do German Shepherds shed?
If you do not look forward to dealing with shedding, getting a German Shepherd might not be a good choice. This breed sheds a lot of its fur so when shedding season comes, expect your home to be filled with dog hair. It can be overwhelming and it will take a lot of patience and determination to manage a German Shepherd’s coat shedding.
However, if you really want to have a German Shepherd, you can anticipate their shedding and take steps to prepare for it. While you cannot completely stop your dog from shedding, there are several ways you can reduce it.
Keeping your German Shepherd’s coat healthy
Grooming is a great way to strengthen your relationship with your dog. Some people might think that German Shepherds are high-maintenance when it comes to grooming but they actually are not. Shedding is inevitable and you cannot stop it from completely happening. But with proper and strategic planning, you can manage it when shedding season comes. In order to deal with the shedding of a German Shepherd especially during the shedding seasons, below are some tips that you can follow:
Brush your dog regularly. Double-coated dogs such as the German Shepherd need to be brushed regularly. This is an important routine of your dog’s grooming especially since it sheds its coat all year round. It is recommended to brush your German Shepherd at least twice a week during normal days. When shedding season comes, use an undercoat rake to remove all loose hair.
Brushing is important to prevent the development of skin problems and remove any tangling of the coat which is also called matting. Always brush in the direction of the hair growth and not against it as this will damage your dog’s skin. Do it gently so you will also not damage the topcoat.
Never cut your dog’s coat. You might get tempted to cut or shave your dog’s coat especially if you see it getting longer. Unless a vet recommends getting it clipped, a German Shepherd’s coat should not be cut or shaved. The coat serves as protection from harmful factors and, most importantly, it is the regulator of its body temperature. If you cut its topcoat, it will leave the undercoat exposed to the coldness of winter and the harsh rays of the sun during summer.
Bathe your dog. Due to their dense coat, German Shepherds do not need to be bathed regularly. In fact, they only need to bathe once every 6 to 10 weeks. This is to remove all dead and loose hair from their undercoat and keep it smelling fresh and clean.
When bathing your dog, use only natural, mild shampoos or deshedding shampoo and conditioner. The latter is a specialized formula that helps slick the dog’s coat for easy removal of loose hair. After bathing and while the coat is damp, brushing it with an undercoat rake will further help in removing all dead and loose hair.
Keep your dog in a hygienic environment. Maintaining a clean and hygienic environment for your German Shepherd is very important. This to make sure that your dog is free from parasites, ticks, and fleas. If your dog is infected, it might lead to health problems and excessive shedding. Make sure that your dog’s beddings are properly cleaned.
Give your dog a healthy diet. Nutrition is also an important factor in controlling your German Shepherd’s shedding. Having a well-balanced diet will keep your dog’s coat healthy. You can ask your vet for the right dog food for your German Shepherd and other supplements you can give. Remember, if a dog is healthy, it will be easier to groom it and prevent excessive shedding.
Use only the best grooming tools. When it comes to grooming, you should only use the best quality tools for your dog. It is important that you do not damage your dog’s coat.
An undercoat rake is an essential tool to remove loose hair from the undercoat. If not removed, it can be uncomfortable for your dog and will be harder to remove the next time you brush your German Shepherd. Since undercoat rakes have wide gaps between the teeth, it will not create a harsh pulling sensation that can hurt your dog.
When it comes to bathing, deshedding shampoo and conditioner is the perfect companion.
There are also high-velocity dryers that professional groomers use to remove unwanted hair. This grooming tool is very effective in reducing shedding for 2 to 3 weeks. If you want to save money, you can just purchase your own high-velocity dryer instead of going to a groomer. K9 Dryers offer a wide selection of good quality high-velocity dryers that efficiently address your dog’s shedding concerns. These dryers lessen the amount of hair in your home and also cut the drying time of your wet dog in half.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do German Shepherds shed?
Just like any other dogs, German Shepherds do shed their coats. However, they might shed more than others so controlling it is important if you do not want to see fur all over your home.
When do German Shepherds shed?
German Shepherds shed their topcoat all year long but they blow their undercoats twice a year. They shed massively during the summertime and the least during winter.
How do you reduce shedding?
There are several ways to control your German Shepherd’s shedding. You can reduce shedding by observing proper grooming, feeding your dog a healthy diet, and keeping your dog in a healthy environment.
What are the best grooming tools for German Shepherds?
Double-coated dogs like the German Shepherd will need an undercoat rake to remove unwanted and loose hair from its undercoat especially during shedding season. Deshedding shampoo and conditioner is also a good thing to have on hand. If you are looking for easier loose hair removal, high-velocity dryers such as those from K9 Dryers have become an essential grooming tool.
What are K9 Dog Dryers?
K9 Dog Dryers are the largest-selling dog dryer brand in the USA. They offer a wide range of high-performance, high-velocity dryers that are essential in dog grooming. Their models range from small single-motor dryer to twin-motor dryer which is perfect for drying your dog and controlling its shedding.
Thinking of getting a German Shepherd?
German Shepherds are very loyal, brave, and easily trained dogs, however, they are also known to be prolific shedders. For some, shedding can be a daunting experience, but if you are a dog lover, you should already accept that it is a part of your dog’s life. With proper grooming practice and using only the best grooming tools, dealing with your German Shepherd’s shedding will not be a big problem for you.