How to comb a German shepherd? What type of brush is best for a German Shepherd?

Each respectful owner of a German Shepherd should take proper care of him. And as is widely known, German Shepherds are famous for their beautiful, long fur. To make your shepherd’s fur your pride and joy, a healthy diet is important but unfortunately not enough.

German Shepherds require to be combed at least twice a week throughout the year, and daily during the period of increased shedding (spring and autumn). A standard grooming kit for a German Shepherd should include a brush to comb or remove tangles, a natural bristle brush, and a slicker brush.

Proper grooming is the first step to making your German Shepherd have exquisite fur. By reading my article, you will learn how to groom your German Shepherd’s fur, and what treatments you should perform. I will also add a few words about useful tools.

What kind of coat does a German Shepherd have?

German Shepherds have a double coat, which consists of a thick undercoat and a dense outer coat, which can be straight or slightly wavy. The length of the German Shepherd’s coat tends to be medium to long. Longer hair is sometimes sparse, though, as it is passed on by a recessive gene.

Nonetheless, German Shepherd coats can vary for a variety of reasons (if only due to genes or parental appearance).

German Shepherds can have one of three types of fur:

  • Short coat

A German Shepherd with a short coat will need brushing 1-2 times a week. A brush with metal pins will be needed, as well as an undercoat comb for a thorough weekly grooming session. During the molting season, you will need to use the undercoat comb even several times a week.

  • Medium coat

A shepherd with a medium coat length will need a brush for daily use and a comb for the undercoat. Depending on how long his coat is, you may also want to get a slicker brush (also known as a slicker) instead of a standard pin brush. Slicker brushes are designed for dogs with long or curly hair to prevent matting.

  • Long coat

The long-haired German Shepherd has an extremely fluffy coat, and no matter what time of year it is, you can expect to see a fair amount of hair scurrying around the house. It will need both a comb for the undercoat and a slicker brush for the coat. Some shepherd owners also like to use a regular pin brush, but a regular slicker brush for grooming also works well.

What kind of brush do you use on a German Shepherd?

For a short-haired German Shepherd, an undercoat rake with a pin brush work best. A medium-haired German Shepherd needs a slicker brush or an undercoat rake. Whereas long-haired GDSs require a combination of using an undercoat rake with a slicker brush.

READ  German Shepherds and Cats: Building a Harmonious Relationship
A great grooming routine for any GSD. I highly recommend watching!

Now, let me specify different uses of various dog brushes that are widely available on the market.

Types of coat brushes:

  • A hairbrush with metal pins – This is a brush for everyday use. It prevents the formation of knots, keeping the coat clean. Nevertheless, this brush will not be effective enough. This means that you will need additional accessories to properly groom your German Shepherd.
  • Undercoat rake – This is an essential tool for all German Shepherds. It removes dead hair, dander and dirt from the undercoat by penetrating through the top layer of the coat. The metal „teeth” consist of one or two rows of tightly spaced pins.
  • Slicker brush – Consists of short, thin wires that are arranged closely together on a brush with a flat surface. This brush is essential for long-haired German Shepherds and many medium-haired dogs. It is used to detangle hair and prevent matting. Many people use slicker brushes instead of pin brushes (with pins).
  • Bristle brush – can be good for shepherds, provided your shepherd has a medium or short coat. It is not recommended for puppies with longer hair, due to the amount of hair that will need to be cleaned up after combing. Bristle brushes are also more difficult to clean. They need to be cleaned more often than brushes with metal pins or undercoat combs.
  • Rubber brush – not recommended for German Shepherds, unless your puppy has a very short coat. Mostly German Shepherds do not have a short coat and usually rank somewhere between medium and long hair.

How often Should I comb My German Shepherd?

Due to its dense coat and undercoat, a German Shepherd should be brushed frequently. It would be ideal for your pooch if you found time to comb every day, but once every couple of days should be enough. Brushes and brushing tools will certainly come in handy, so don’t be afraid to stock up on them.

READ  German Shepherds: The Energetic Ideal Dog

Brushing will not only reduce the intensity of coat shedding, but will also be good for your dog’s health, and well-being, and will bolster your relationship.

How often can a German Shepherd puppy be combed?

A German Shepherd puppy should be combed at least twice a week using a rubber glove only. This will help get your puppy used to being combed and prevent possible hair pulling.

And when the time comes for the period of increased moulting – that is, in spring and autumn – it is advisable to comb him even every day. Especially if your shepherd lives with you in an apartment.

You can read more about German Shepherd shedding in the article „Does a German Shepherd Lose His Hair? (+ How to Reduce German Shepherd Linen)”.

When Can I Start Brushing My German Shepherd?

You can start brushing your German Shepherd puppy when it reaches the age of 6 to 8 weeks. Start by using a gentle mitt that won’t tug the coat. Thanks to the fact that German Shepherd puppies have soft and fluffy coats, it is not necessary to buy different accessories.

At first, use a combing mitt and use short, 1-2 minute sessions. This way you get your puppy used to being touched and brushed, and later combing will be much easier and more enjoyable for both of you.

Over time, lengthen the sessions to 3-5 minutes. And as your puppy’s coat grows, you’ll be able to use other brushes. Use rewards and a positive training style, and your puppy will begin to love daily grooming.

READ  Factors Affecting German Shepherd Ear Development: What to Know

Remember: brush your puppy slowly. His first experience with it will set his later expectations for the routine. If he gets discouraged, you will have a hard time taking care of him.

Is it okay to wet-brush your dog?

It is best to brush your dog before bathing him. This will remove loose hair and dirt and ensure that any tangles and knots have been combed out. These will be much more difficult to comb out when wet. If you still want to brush your dog after bathing, let it dry beforehand.

Tip: To make combing easier, you can spray your dog with a pet-safe hair combing product.

Is it okay to shave a German Shepherd?

ABSOLUTELY NOT. German Shepherds and other dogs that have a double coat reap plenty of benefits from it and depriving them of their coat will only harm them. Shaving German Shepherds should not take place because such a procedure has a lot of disadvantages and not a single advantage.

The double coat of German Shepherds has thermoregulatory and protective functions. In summer it protects against heat and UV radiation, and in winter it protects against freezing. In addition, once shaved the coat not only grows back very slowly but also does not grow back as long as before. In addition, it often loses its charm and is much lighter in colour.

If someone wants to take a dog under his roof and is bothered by its coat shedding should think twice before making a decision. Hair loss is a natural process and should be fully accepted.

As for allergies… Some people persist in believing that dander is the cause of allergies. This is not entirely true because allergies are caused by what is known as pet dander, which are skin particles that the animal sheds throughout the year. Shaving your dog down to the skin makes things much worse because you expose his skin even more. I believe this should not be the case.