Grooming for German Shepherds

When it comes to owning a German shepherd dog, one factor that we all know is that they have thick beautiful coats. With this thick coat comes some upkeep that needs to be done on our end as owners. A common question that we at Canine Extreme get is; what combs and brushes do I use? While this can be based on preference, there are a few standard brushes that will benefit your furry friend. In this article, you will find a brief breakdown of some of the grooming needs that your German Shepherd dog has.

Your German shepherd dog is a double-coated breed who will benefit from brushing. Brushing is an essential part of the health of your dog’s coat. When it comes to how often you brush them, it altogether depends on the brush used (more information below). While you can’t stop the shedding altogether, if they are not brushed regularly, you’ll find more in your house. Over time you may also find that his undercoat, particularly on his stomach and around his neck becomes matted.

You want to find a brush that is beneficial to the hair and coat, as wells as one that your dog enjoys being brushed with. During the shedding season, you’ll want to use a shedding rake to keep the excess hair at bay. This can be used to gently brush the dog 2-3 times per week during this season. You want to make sure that you are not digging out the undercoat, merely removing the loose hair. The rake should be placed on the German Shepherd Dog and lightly pulled back in the direction of the hair growth, with only the slightest pressure.

The second brush that you can use is a soft brush such as a horsehair or boar hair brush to massage the coat. This will help bring out and spread the healthy natural oils for your dog’s coat. The use of the soft brush can be used multiple times a week and is a wonderful bonding experience between you and your dog. The brush should be lightly pulled across the German shepherd in the direction of the hair. I’ve included a link below to our preferred rake and brush below:

Bamboo Curry Brush

Safari Dog Undercoat Rake

German Shepherd Dogs should be bathed rarely; maybe two to three times a year. Bathing too frequently can cause the natural oil in their fur to become depleted. The natural oils help your dogs coat stay healthy. A healthy coat reduces shedding, smells, water absorption, and more. When you do bathe them, using a slicker brush after their bath is particularly effective. You will collect a lot of the excess hair off right after bathing. Once the dog is dry, they look tremendous if their coat is finished by shining it with a cloth for shine.

Taking your time to make grooming enjoyable is one of the most important factors when grooming your German shepherd dog. When beginning don’t try to perform everything at one time. Once you decide to start brushing you dog, you can begin by asking the dog to stay and then doing one brush stroke. Then the next time two, then three and so on. Grooming should become a time where you and your dog can bond and enjoy the moment.

Common Questions

Q: How often should I brush my dog?
A: The amount that you brush your dog is all dependent on the brush used and the health of your dog’s coat. If you’re using a rake during shedding season than 2-3 times per week. If using a softer brush such as a boar hair or horsehair brush, then 3-4 times a week. Once you start brushing, keep an eye on your dog’s coat, and find an amount that works best for them.

Q: My German Shepherd has short hair, should I still brush it?
A: Absolutely! Even if your dog has short hair, you can use a softer brush to bring out the coat’s oils. The oils in the coat will help keep the coat healthy and even less smelly!

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