Regardless of the coat length, all dogs require grooming to ensure a healthy, pleasant-to-live-with pet. Some breeds naturally require more than others. So, let’s see what is involved in taking care of the German Shepherd’s coat.
Grooming a German Shepherd Basics
The German Shepherd was originally a breed used in herding sheep. And of course, today, it is a breed often used in a variety of working dog capacities. But the German Shepherd is also a very popular choice as a household pet known for its intelligence, loyalty and ease of training.
You will want your German Shepherd to look as striking as possible which usually goes hand-in-hand with optimal health.
German Shepherd Coat Types
The amount of grooming required will be largely determined by which type of German Shepherd coat you are dealing with.
German Shepherd Double Coat
The German Shepherd is generally referred to as having a double coat – an outer protective coat and an inner coat with softer hair generally regarded as providing some degree of insulation against different temperatures.
However, there are definitely other coat types among this breed which means that some German Shepherds just have the more wiry outer coat.
Short Coat German Shepherd or Medium Haired German Shepherd?
The length of coat can vary among German Shepherds.
If your German Shepherd dog (GSD) has a short coat you can usually expect a double coat and a length of approximately 1 inch, or about 2.5 cm.
If your Shepherd has a medium length coat then it will have an undercoat and you will be looking at a length of about 1 to 2 inches or approximately 2.5 to 5 cm. This is the more common coat length among this breed and certainly what you will tend to find in show dogs.
Anything longer would be classified as a long haired German Shepherd and these can be either double or single coated dogs.
German Shepherd Shedding Solution
Because German Shepherds are more likely to be double coated, you can expect a fair amount of shedding.. The undercoat, for example, needs to be shed when that extra insulating warmth is no longer needed with the onset of a new season.
That doesn’t mean that you will have a non shedding German Shepherd if he has only a single coat. Ceratinly the shedding should be less but you can still expect a certain amount.
So if you are the proud owner of a German Shepherd, then it will pay to have a decent vacuum cleaner that can tackle dog hair. But of course you can minimise this household task with regular brushing. Correct brushing is something you will need to do anyway as part of your grooming routine so make the task easier with a brush or a deshedding tool suitable for German Shepherds.
So, as you can see, German Shepherd hair loss, depending on the season, means that maintaining an optimal German Shepherd coat involves a regular grooming routine. More specifically, this requires:
- Regular Brushing with the right kind of tool.
- Use of a good dog shampoo, one that prevents allergic reactions.
- Use of a conditioning spray.
Some owners showing their German Shepherd use a volumizer hair conditioner spray just prior to entering the display area. This can add a nice sheen to the coat. Just remember to cover the eyes with your hand while spraying.
- Deshedding, again with the right tool.
Popular here is the Long Hair deShedding Tool for Dogs, Large.
A real plus with this deShedding tool is the fact that it comes with a button back of its head that allows you to remove hair from the tool itself so that it can be properly cleaned.
German Shepherd Teeth
For some reason dental care is often neglected when it comes to dogs. But this is an essential part of dog care and has a huge impact on his/her health. Neglect can also prove quite costly in terms of veterinary bills further down the track.
If you have your dog from the age of a puppy, then you can get him used to being touched around and inside the mouth area so that you can take care of cleaning. And of course it also means that you are ensuring appropriate dental care from an early age.
An appropriate dental regime can be as simple as:
- cleaning teeth with a finger tooth brush for dogs
- providing a good diet
- dental chews
- regular veterinary checks.
Other German Shepherd Grooming Tools
Having a sturdy table, preferably with a harness, can make your German Shepherd grooming much more manageable.
German Shepherd Allergies
Is your German Shepherd scratching incessantly?
Does your German Shepherd seem to have various itchy spots?
If so, then it is important to let a veterinarian take a look first in case there is an underlying health problem.
The cause could also be fleas which not only lead to scratching but can also lead to an allergic type reaction.
Or it could be an allergic reaction to something the dog has been eating. So you might want to look at food allergies, a problem quite common in dogs, no less in German Shepherds.
German Shepherd Food
Selecting the right food, or preparing it yourself, will go a long way towards trying to avoid some allergy problems in dogs. But who has the time to do all of that preparation right? If you are in that boat, no time to spare that is, then here is one nutritious solution:
German Shepherd Care Books
If you are about to treat yourself to a cute German Shepherd puppy then you can find some very handy caring tips in these books. Topics include raising your puppy, diet, health issues, grooming at home and obedience training to name a few.