German Shepherds are one of the most lovable dog breeds you can have. They are considered the super dogs of the canine world because of how intelligent and loyal they are to their owners.
However, you need to know that they shed a lot by comparison to other dogs, namely year-round, which has earned them the nickname “German Shedder”. This shedding is also called “the seasonal coat blow”, which means that the amount of hair they shed depends on the weather and season.
There are also some particular reasons why your German Shepherd sheds a lot, and you need to be aware of them. Knowing the causes will definitely help you alleviate the problem, which in turn will benefit your dog’s health.
German Shepherd shed a lot and solution
1. Your German Shepherd doesn’t need all of its fur
As I mentioned earlier, it is natural for German Shepherds to shed a lot, and that’s because they have to get rid of that extra loose fur. In fact, this applies for all dog breeds. So, what you can do to minimize the shedding is to keep your German Shepherd well-groomed by brushing its fur.
One thing you need to know is that the German Shepherd has a double coat (another reason why they shed a lot compared to other dogs), which means that there is an undercoat beneath the fur you see with your naked eye. As such, it is necessary to get an undercoat rake and slicker brush to make sure your German Shepherd is well-groomed. Never skip brushing its fur or you’ll be vacuuming a lot.
2. Your German Shepherd’s diet affects its shedding
Just like us, humans, German Shepherds need a healthy diet too. Aside from weather and season, the dogs’ health plays a vital role in minimizing their shedding, and their food is a huge factor in that matter. As a German Shepherd owner, you have to be picky when it comes to dog food.
Dog food based on meat is much better compared to some cheaper dog food that might have uncertain ingredients. Meat-based food might be expensive, but since your German Shepherd’s health and shedding are at stake, it is important to choose what’s best.
Adding flaxseed oil or any oil that contains omega -3 fatty acids to your German Shepherd’s food can also help minimize its shedding and improve the overall texture of its coat. This kind of oil calms inflamed skin, and it decreases dandruff and scratching, which will help to reduce shedding.
Feeding your German Shepherd with human food, such as apple slices (don’t forget to remove the seeds), lean meat or any moisture-rich meal is also a good strategy. This type of food can keep your German Shepherd hydrated, and the nourishing substances will keep the dog’s coat shiny, reducing shedding.
German Shepherds’ shedding is sometimes caused by lack of water. Dehydration leads to dry skin, which causes more shedding. That’s why you, as the owner of a German Shepherd, must provide clean and fresh water at all times.
Make sure that your German Shepherd has access to fresh and clean water both inside and outside your house. If your dog doesn’t drink a lot of water, you can also get wet dog food, as it contains 78% moisture.
If your German Shepherd is shedding more than usual, then that might be the symptom of an allergy. Allergies can be environmental or food-based, and they can cause inflammation and itchiness. If your German Shepherd scratches a lot, this will lead to even more fur falling.
In order to prevent or identify allergies, it is therefore necessary to visit the vet regularly and check on your German Shepherd’s health.
5. Irregular baths
It is already a fact that no one can stop a German Shepherd from shedding a lot, but you, as its owner, are responsible of giving your dog regular baths.
Bathing your German Shepherd isn’t like giving a bath to a human. In fact, your dog only needs to be bathed once a month. But by ensuring that these baths take place regularly, you will also ensure that the shedding is reduced to a minimum and you are no longer forced to vacuum your couch and living room every single day. Trust me, it is much better to have fur on your tab than to have it on your couch or in your living room.
Yes, over-bathing your German Shepherd can also cause a lot more shedding or at least worsen the situation. It is not advisable to over-bathe your German Shepherd, because it can strip its fur of natural oils and leave the skin dry, which will lead to more shedding.
7. Fleas and other parasites!
Fleas and parasites are extremely irritating! They are irritating for your German Shepherd, and irritating for you, because you have to vacuum more of the dog’s fur. Fleas can cause dandruff and irritated skin, which in turn lead to more shedding. However, such problems can be prevented by visiting the vet and getting the proper anti-flea-vaccine, as well as advice on how to get rid of fleas and parasites in general.
Just like us, humans, your German Shepherd could be shedding more than usual because of stress. Dogs may experience stress due to a variety of reasons, like separation-driven anxiety or boredom. That’s why it is necessary for your German Shepherd to be trained and to go for some quick outdoor exercising every morning.
9. Undiagnosed health problem
If the shedding of your German Shepherd is unusual, and the dog has been scratching excessively lately, then it might suffer from an undiagnosed health problem. The only and the best thing to do about this matter is to visit the vet immediately to identify the exact problem of your German Shepherd and to avoid any serious health problems.
Just because German Shepherds shed a lot in general, that doesn’t mean there aren’t any alarming signals that you should watch out for. Having a German Shepherd comes with great responsibility. You should always remember to take care and treat your pet like you would treat a human being.
It is indeed a great thing to own a German Shepherd, because they are the ideal family dogs that every owner would want to have. Yes, it is true that they shed a lot compared to other dogs, but it is normal for a double-coated dog to shed a lot, and you can’t prevent this. The only alternative you have is to minimize the shedding by accumulating sufficient knowledge on how to take care of a German Shepherd.