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How to Take Care of a German Shepherd

Do you have a German Shepherd dog and need to know how to take care of him/her? This article sets out a practical and detailed guide for exactly how to look after a German Shepherd dog successfully.


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    Choose your German Shepherd. Make sure the breeder isn't abusive, and make sure your dog doesn't have any diseases so you can give it a long, happy life at your house
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    Give your German Shepherd a way to keep cool. German Shepherds, especially long-haired shepherds, are susceptible to hot weather. If you have a long-haired shepherd and you live in a hot/tropical area, provide your dog with plenty of water and shade while outside, and don't demand too much of him on extremely hot days.
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    Teach your German Shepherd tricks. Not only will a well behaved German Shepherd be more impressive and easier to care for, but you and your dog will develop a bond if you take the time to train it. As the bond gets stronger, your German Shepherd will be more likely to listen to your commands, and will be happier to have you as a master.
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    Remember that a German Shepherd is large. Give this breed space. German Shepherds are very active, fun-loving dogs. They need a lot of space to run around. Make sure that your yard is clear, uncluttered and hazard-free. If you don't have a big yard then take your dog daily to the local park, or make use of any other appropriate open spaces accessible from your home. German Shepherd dogs get along with other dogs well.
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    Feed your GSD properly. Make sure you feed your shepherd twice per day, and feed it the right amount. Don't give him/her too little or too much. Make sure you are feeding a quality food which doesn't use corn for protein. Dogs drink a lot. Fill up a bowl and leave it where your dog has access to it. Check up on the bowl several times a day to make sure there is plenty of water and that it is clean.
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    Bathe your shepherd every month or so. You can bathe him/her at home or take him/her to a groomer.
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    Take your shepherd to the vet. Here are some reasons to do so:
      • Check-up - The vet can check the general condition of your dog and give regular injections.
      • Bath - the vet will give your dog a proper bath to get rid of stench and check for things like ear infections.
      • Nails - When your dogs nails get long it is very painful for them to move about. Take him/her to the vet to have them clipped.
      • De-worming/heart worm test - All dogs must be wormed every month or so to prevent them getting worms. First your dog will need to be tested for worms, and then your vet can prescribe a medication to be taken monthly. If your dog already has worms, your vet can provide a medication for treatment.
      • Old age - This specific breed of dog gets many problems when they get old-mainly joint problems. If your dog has trouble walking, take him/her to the vet, who will give you medicine or help your German Shepherd with therapy or, in extreme cases, surgery.
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    Exercise your dog. Without exercise, the German Shepherd's amazing muscles and energy will be locked up inside with no outlet. You need to exercise your German Shepherd daily by playing fetch, taking it for a long walk or run, or even chasing your dog around the yard. German Shepherds who don't get enough exercise are more likely to get joint diseases like hip and elbow dysplasia, as well as become destructive. Beware of too much exercise at young age, as this can cause the dog to develop improperly.
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    Love your dog. This breed is loving and needs TLC back! Cuddle with your dog daily. Don't beat your dog or yell unnecessarily at it. Never scold your dog unless you catch it IN THE ACT. Otherwise the dog will associate scolding with you, not the action.
    • You can't fake affection, even with a dog. So you have to have expressions and gestures to prove how much you adore him/her, to make him/her feel lovable and loved. There has to be sincere and genuine love shared between the two of you and your German Shepherd.


  • Regular touching and handling of the face and feet as a puppy means that when the puppy grows up they won't mind having their nails clipped or teeth/mouth checked.
  • As soon as you see your dog has walking problems take it to the vet.
  • Consider getting your German Shepherd spayed/neutered unless you are sure you have good homes for any and all puppies it might have.
    • Neutering or spaying your dog will also generally help eliminate aggressive behavior.
  • Never leave your dog outside at night and feed him two times a day.
  • Feed your puppy 3-4 times a day. Puppies have a different diet than adult German Shepherds. Adults only need to be fed once a day. Make sure it's at the same time everyday.
  • It's recommended to take the dog to a vet once in a while for a check up.
  • It is best to divide the meal into two smaller ones so you can arrange your walks along with the food consumption.
  • Be friendly to your dog, love them, and they will love you back!
  • While training be consistent with commends and in short time frames just as you would your child. Train in a positive manner you don't have to use treats all the time. Lavish positive results with lots of praise, petting and love.
  • German Shepherds are great guide dogs, guard dogs, rescue dogs, police dogs, etc. They are very smart and need lots of mental and physical exercise.


  • Do not suddenly change dog food. Mix the foods together, gradually increasing the new food and decreasing the old food.
  • If not socialized properly in puppy hood, German Shepherds can have aggression issues.
  • Do not mix detergents/cleaners/disinfectants to clean their "territory"
  • Be careful with plants. Some (broad long leafy) can be very poisonous.
  • German Shepherds are large dogs and are prone to bloat. Do not engage them in strenuous activity two hours before or after eating to prevent it.
  • Wooden chips attract them and may harm their stomach. For example, German Shepherd Dogs are attracted to the resin glue in plywood.
  • To keep it outside, you need to have the complete yard bounded by a wall/fence.
  • Do not take your German Shepherd jogging or running with you before one and a half years of age, because his or her joints and bones are still developing.
  • Don't take too long to gradually change your puppy from cooked food to dog food. If you take more than a year, he/she will grow up with a weak stomach.

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Categories: Dogs