- German Shepherd Grooming
- Do German Shepherds Shed?
- What are The Best Dog Brushes for German Shepherds in 2020?
- 1. Hertzko Bristle Brush for Dogs and Cats with Long or Short Hair
- 2. Hertzko Self Cleaning Slicker Brush
- 3. PawsPamper Extra Wide Undercoat Rake for Medium to Large Dogs
- 4. GoPets Professional Double Sided Pin and Bristle Brush for Dogs
- 5. GoPets Dematting Comb with 2 Sided Professional Grooming Rake for Dogs
- 6. Best Deshedder: Furminator Undercoat Deshedding Tool for Dogs
- 7.DakPets Deshedding Brush-Dog Hair & Cat Hair Shedding Tool
- How to Brush My German Shepherd: Step-By-Step
- Related FAQs
Most German Shepherds parents know that German Shepherds are double-coated dogs that need to be brushed regularly. But what many GSDs owners may not know is the proper way to brush their dogs.
For a starting point, you need to know that there is no single best dog brush for German Shepherds that suits every GSD. Why? Because German Shepherds breeds have four different coats and each requires different needs.
Let’s lake at those four different coats before we decipher the best German shepherd brush for each coat, and later on, we will learn the correct way to brush your German Shepherd.
In this article we’re going to review the following brushes:
- Best Bristle Brush: Hertzko Bristle Brush for Dogs and Cats with Long or Short Hair
- Best Slicker Brush: Hertzko Self Cleaning Slicker Brush
- Best Grooming Rake: PawsPamper Extra Wide Undercoat Rake for Medium to Large Dogs
- Best Pin Brush: GoPets Professional Double Sided Pin and Bristle Brush for Dogs
- Best Comb: GoPets Dematting Comb with 2 Sided Professional Grooming Rake for Dogs
- Best Deshedder: Furminator Undercoat Deshedding Tool for Dogs
- DakPets Deshedding Brush-Dog Hair & Cat Hair Shedding Tool
German Shepherd Grooming
German Shepherds breeds have four different coats: short with an undercoat, medium with an undercoat, long with an undercoat, and long without an undercoat.
The short and the medium-coated German Shepherds are the ones that you often see in a dog show. The primary difference between the three variants is obviously the length of the coat.
The short-coated GSD has a short coat, the medium-coated (also called plush coat) has a coat longer than the short ones, the long-coated has the longest hairs that cover all parts of the body—most noticeable in the ears, back of the legs and the tail.
Each type has a slightly different grooming requirement. Since most German Shepherds have double coats, you need to have at least two different brushes: one for the outer coat and one for the undercoat.
Different Types of Dog Brushes for Grooming your German Shepherd
There is a wide range of brushes to choose from: bristle brush, slicker brush, pin brush, undercoat rake, and de-shedding brush.
Each caters to different types of coats, choosing which ones to use can be quiet confusing, especially for the first-time German Shepherds owners.
Most groomers that I talked to said that German Shepherd owners only need three brushes to groom their dogs: the main brush (pin, bristle, or slicker), a grooming rake, and comb.
The main brush is for targeting the outer coat, to focus the undercoat you need to use a dog grooming rake, and de-matting comb is used to get rid stubborn knots, mats, and tangles. If your German shepherd is diagnosed with fleas, you may also want to get a flea comb.
Short-Haired German Shepherd Grooming
If your German shepherd is a short coat, it’s best to use a bristle brush to target the outer coat and a grooming rake for the undercoat. It has clusters of tightly packed bristles that will remove loose fur and distribute the coat’s natural oil, making it healthy and shiny.
Long-Haired German Shepherd Grooming
Since medium to long hair coats tends to develop mats and tangles, it’s best to use a slicker brush and a grooming rake.
Slicker brushes have fine, tightly spaced wires that can effectively untangle mats but can cause discomfort if you apply too much pressure; you need to be gentle when using them.
Grooming German Shepherd’s Undercoat
To target the German Shepherd’s undercoat, you would need a grooming rake. A rake is essentially a brush that is shaped like a shaving razor.
It works best to penetrate a German Shepherd’s thick coat to remove tangles, dead undercoat, and any dirt or debris that might have become trapped in the coat.
Just like a razor, you need to use it with great care; otherwise, it can scratch your dog’s skin.
When buying a rake for your German shepherd, be sure to choose one with the length of pins that match your German shepherd’s hair length. You don’t want a rake that is too short or too long.
Too short, it won’t be able to penetrate the GSD’s thick coat, too long, and it will irritate the dog’s skin.
Long-Haired German Shepherd Grooming without an Undercoat
For long-haired GSDs without an undercoat, do not use rakes since they can scratch the dog’s skin. It’s best to use a pin brush to groom this type of German Shepherd dogs.
Pin brushes can be made of plastic, metal, bamboo, or rubber. And they look similar to the human brushes.
When buying pin brushes, regardless of the material that they are made of, I recommend getting one that has rubber pins at the end of each bristle to prevent your dog’s coat from getting scratched.
Do German Shepherds Shed?
Regardless of the coat types or length, all German Shepherd dogs shed a lot year-round and twice a year—once in the fall, and once in the spring—they will blow their undercoat.
Not only a German Shepherd dog, but all double-coated dog breeds like Huskies, Samoyeds, and Malamutes blow their coat.
When seasons change, they blow their coats to switch from their summer coats to winter coats and vice versa. This way, they can adapt to the environment and stay comfortable all year long.
If you have at least one-year-old German Shepherd, you may have experienced these crazy blowing periods.
Unlike the regular shedding session where only a few hairs come out, during the blowing period you may end up with large clumps of loose hair.
What are The Best Dog Brushes for German Shepherds in 2020?
To be honest, in terms of quality, there is not much difference between one brush to the next. If you buy from Amazon, you’ll be just fine buying brushes rated with four or five stars.
The following are top brushes that are commonly used by professional dog groomers.
Hertzko brush is our choice for the best bristle brush for German shepherd dogs. You can use it to brush the outer coat of short-haired German Shepherd dogs. And it does a great job to remove loose hair and prevents matting.
What makes this brush ideal for short-haired German Shepherd dogs is the bristles that are softer than the other brushes that I had tried. The bristles are so soft and gentle; you will have a piece of mind brushing your German shepherd without getting worried the bristles will scratch their skin.
- Soft bristles.
- Comfort grip design.
- Ergonomic handle.
- Thirty days of a money-back guarantee.
- Not for medium to long-haired double-coated dogs with thicker coats.
Hertzko is the best brush to get rid of all the loose hairs and eliminates tangles, dirt, and debris out of German Shepherd’s coat.
The best part about this brush is the retractable feature. If you had ever used slicker brushes before, you would know it’s a pain in the ass to clean them.
Unlike the regular slicker brush, with Herztko you just need to press the button, and the bristle retracts back into the brush, making it easy to pull the pad of hair off.
When you’re not using it, the wires go back inside the brush so you can keep it in the basket or drawer without accidentally damaging the thin bristles or bending them.
- Retractable feature.
- Great for medium to long-haired GSDs.
- Easy to clean.
- Ergonomic handle.
- Anti-slip handle.
- Because you need to hold down the button continuously while brushing, this brush might not be best for dog owners with weak thumbs or arthritis.
The PawsPamper undercoat rake is the most favorite pet grooming rake among many dog groomers I talked to.
Many German Shepherds parents said that their dogs’ hair problems were diminished by 80% to 85% after using this rake.
What makes this rake so popular among many dog parents is the stainless steel edges that are designed rounded. So you can brush your dog comfortably without worrying the blades will irritate their skin.
- Rounded blade edges prevent skin irritation.
- Beautiful wooden handle.
- Stainless steel materials.
- Cut normal grooming time in half.
- Removing loose hairs from the undercoat without pulling or damaging the top coat.
- Works best for medium-coated dogs like German Shepherds but doesn’t work on very thick-coated dogs like Huskies.
GoPets double-sided brush is a multi-purpose brush, you get two different brushes in one: pin and bristle brush. The pin side gets your German shepherd’s fur straightened out, and the bristle side removes loose fur and dirt, making the dog’s coat soft and smooth.
What I like from the GoPet double-sided brush are the rounded pins that protect your dog’s coat from getting hurt. The handle is also quite large and easy to grip.
- Two brushes in one.
- Rounded pins design.
- Stainless steel materials.
- Easy to grip.
- Lifetime guarantee.
- Silicone gel handle. Your German shepherd can accidentally puncture it when they get excited during the brushing session.
This double-sided pet comb is another excellent product from GoPets; you get a de-matting comb and de-matting grooming tools in one. The de-matting comb can be used to remove stubborn mats and tangles while the de-matting grooming tool is used to control shedding.
If you have a dog with sensitive skin, you’ll love the design of the rounded ends. Many dog owners found their sensitive dogs tolerate this comb very well where others fail to deliver.
- Multi-purpose comb.
- Easy to use.
- Rounded ends that work great for dogs with sensitive skin.
- Money back or replacement guarantee.
- Many people don’t like the sticky gel in the handle.
I use the Furminator Undercoat Deshedding Tool to reduce my German shepherd’s shedding, in which I can vouch for its effectiveness. I found through my own experiences and others that this deshedding grooming tool does reduce shedding up to 90% when used regularly.
It features stainless steel teeth that can reach through the top coat and into the undercoat without damaging the top coat. After collecting all the dead hair, you can clean the brush easily by pressing the “FURejector” button. Also, it has an ergonomic handle, so you can keep a good, comfortable grip as you deshed your German shepherd.
This deshedder comes in five sizes, from small to giant. For German shepherd dogs, you want to pick the long hair one.
The DakPets shedding brush is my other favorite de-shedding grooming tool for German shepherds. It claims to reduce shedding by up to 95% without damaging the top coat when used daily.
This brush features a non-irritating 100mm 4-inch stainless steel blade with a cover that protects the blade when not in use. The handle is a non-slip rubber handle, which makes it comfortable to grip and easy to use.
The DakPets brush is available in three different colors (blue, pink, and yellow), and comes with an unconditional money-back guarantee.
How to Brush My German Shepherd: Step-By-Step
The following are the easiest and simplest steps to brush your German Shepherds. Each session might last 15 to 40 minutes, depending on your dog’s coat conditions.
- This first step is the longest part of your brushing session. Take an undercoat rake and brush through your German shepherd’s hair. Keeps brushing until your German shepherd’s coat feels nice and smooth.
- Use a brush (slicker, bristle, or pin) to groom your GSD’s outer coat.
- Take a comb and work through the rest of their body to remove any mats or tangles that you might have missed in step one.
- As a finishing, use a boar brush to smooth the coat and help spread the skin’s natural oils.
1. How much does a German shepherd shed?
German shepherd dogs shed heavily year-round, and twice a year they blow their undercoat, which produces large amounts of loose hair.
2. How can I get my German shepherd to stop shedding?
While there is no way to stop your German shepherd from shedding completely, there are ways to reduce the amount they shed. One way is to brush and de-shed your dog’s coat regularly using the grooming tools I’ve reviewed here.
Another thing you can do is feed your German shepherd an appropriate diet with adequate vitamins and nutrients. A complete and balanced diet will help promote healthy hair growth and reduce shedding.
Some German shepherds may also be benefited from consuming Omega-3 fatty acids. They keep your dog’s skin moisturized, and hydrated skin reduces dog shedding.
3. Can German shepherds be shaved?
It can be tempting to shave off their dogs’ coat entirely, but you should not do it unless it is for a health or medical reason, such as treating hot spots. If you shave their coat, they will lose their only natural protection sun against sun damage leaving them more susceptible to rashes or burns.
Not forget to mention, it would take a long time before the coats will grow back, and in some cases, they never grow back the same. So be sure to consider this option carefully.
4. How often should I brush my German shepherd?
It’s recommended that you brush your German shepherd’s entire coat 3-4 times every week to keep the dog’s fur shiny and loose hair-free.