How to Care for Your German Shepherd


German Shepherds are one of the most devoted and loved pets all over the world. These intelligent and active dogs love to spend time outdoors and are quick to learn tricks. However, these pets are known to suffer from separation anxiety which means you should not adopt them if you spend several hours from home. If you’re a new owner, knowing how to care for your German Shepherd is a must.

Pet owners should pay attention to their schedule before bringing this dog home. If left alone, these dogs feel restless and anxious. Such behavioral problems can only be fixed if you spend quality time with your dog. Here are a few things you need to know for taking proper care of your German shepherd:

Separation Anxiety

Separation anxiety is common among German shepherds because of their loyal and affectionate demeanor. These furry pals love to spend hours with their owners and are known to become aggressive and anxious if left alone. Consider your schedule before adopting a German shepherd or better yet, crate train them. Crate training is not only a fantastic way to housetrain your dog but it also teaches them to remain content and composed while they are left alone. Stock up their crates with their favorite toys, include chew toys that are filled with kibble. This will help them settle down.

Early Socialization

German Shepherds are known to become suspicious and aloof when introduced to strangers. Like other dogs, expose your German shepherd to new experiences while they are still young. This will help them adapt to new surroundings easily. Additionally, pay attention to obedience training to prevent your dog from reacting aggressively to other pets and animals on the street. You can enroll your pet into a puppy class at   a local pet store if you are unable to train them yourself. Because of their large size, German Shepherds may bump toddlers or other house pets, so monitor your dog’s playtime with your children.

Shedding

German Shepherds are heavy shedders. In fact, they are commonly known as German Shedders. Shedding is fairly common as it is their way of losing damaged or dead hair, but the frequency or amount depends on the dog’s breed.  While you cannot completely stop your German shepherd from shedding hair, there are several ways you can make the experience much better for you and your dog. Here are a few pointers to keep in mind:

  • Visit your vet and ask them to recommend a brush for your German shepherd according to their hair type. Invest in high quality grooming tools as they will not only last longer but will also keep your dog’s coat healthy.
  • Feed your dog high quality dog food. This will help them maintain a healthy and thick coat. On the plus side, it will also prevent digestive problems.
  • Brush your furry pal’s coat every day or at least several times a week to keep their coat healthy and shiny. However, be gentle while brushing their hair as you may damage their skin if you are not careful. Brushing your dog’s fur will minimize shedding by getting rid of excess dead skin cells.
  • Bathe your dog occasionally or as per required. If you are unable to give your dog a proper bath at home, consider taking them to the groomer or to the pet store. It is will definitely be worthwhile as German Shepherds do not need baths that often. If you are bathing them at home, ensure that you use high quality shampoo, preferably a mild formula so you do not damage their fur.
  • Wipe your dog’s fur immediately if it gets smelly or dirty instead of saving it for later. The dirt and debris might accumulate further down into their skin, making cleaning more difficult. Purchase special wipes or clean specific areas of your dog’s fur by simply using soap and water.
  • There is no magical solution for shedding hence vacuum your house regularly to minimize the chances of allergies.
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Bone Related Disorders

German Shepherds are prone to suffer from bone related disorders. As they are known to grow rapidly between the ages of 4 to 7 months, pay proper attention to their diet and exercise needs. Feed them a high quality, low caloric diet to prevent them from becoming obese. Additionally, do not let them play or jump around in hard surfaces when they are still young as it may cause damage to their joints.

German Shepherds are a lot of fun. Follow the above mentioned guidelines so your new pet remains healthy and happy for years to come.

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