How to Care for a Full Breed German Shepherd? (5 Important Facts)

How to Care for a Full Breed German Shepherd? - Healthier Pets Today

Full breed German shepherd dogs are herding dogs recognized for their bravery, loyalty, and guarding instincts. This breed is an outstanding security dog, police dog, military dog, guide dog for the blind, and search and rescue dog. The German Shepherd is a beloved family pet in many homes.

German Shepherd Training 

How to Care for a Full Breed German Shepherd? - Healthier Pets Today

A Full Breed German Shepherd is easy to teach due to their incredible intelligence and obedience when given the correct information and a risk-free environment. Some believe they are easier to train than other breeds since they can rapidly absorb and retain information.

1. Socialization

Puppies of all breeds, including your GSD puppy, have a crucial socialization window that shuts between 12 and 16 weeks of age. Indeed, socialization is especially vital for GSDs, who are naturally protective guardians, so your puppy understands which strangers are kind and which are not.

GSDs are perceptive; your puppy will start picking up on your hints and reactions to new people and circumstances. Exposure to many individuals in non-threatening settings during this crucial period can help your puppy be comfortable among kind strangers rather than scared or aggressive.

2. Grooming

During the socialization period, be sure to introduce your GSD to the various aspects of everyday life and routines that you want them to be able to handle as adults. GSDs, for example, require regular brushing to minimize shedding and preserve coat and skin health, especially during irregular periods (often twice a year) whenever these dogs “blow their coats.” As a result, you should introduce basic grooming instruments, such as combs, brushes, and nail clippers, to your puppy early on, going slowly initially and making it a pleasurable experience.

3. Obedience Training 

The work ethic of a Full breed German shepherd is renowned, and you can foster your dog’s best working traits early and often through training. GSDs are known for their obedience, so start teaching your pup basic commands like sit, down, and stay, as well as loose-leash walking, at a young age. Enrolling your puppy in a training class can be highly beneficial for teaching these commands and socialization.

4. Training As They Age 

How to Care for a Full Breed German Shepherd? - Healthier Pets Today

Full breed German shepherd may only reach adult maturity once they are two or three years old (male dogs tend to reach maturity later than females). So working on impulse control, improving obedience skills, and progressing to training in more structured activities like monitoring, smell work, security work, quickness, and herding—all among which (and much more) are skills of this breed—must continue during this period and then be reaffirmed as your GSD reaches maturity.

5. Grooming, Again!

We touched on this slightly during one of the previous paragraphs, but since German Shepherds have double coats, we decided to go more in-depth. 

German Shepherds have such magnificent thick coats that they must be groomed regularly. The undercoat, the soft layer of their fur, is dense, while the outer layer is coarser to protect them from the environment. Furthermore, the German Shepherd is a double-coated breed, meaning there are twice as many layers to maintain.

Allow your German Shepherd to lie down free of their collar to ensure comfort. Take a smooth brush and brush it down the length of their spine, all the way to the tail, in the way his coat grows. Rep until there is little to no hair escaping through the bristles. Then go to the pup’s hips, followed by the tail.

Roll your Full breed German shepherd on their side and carefully brush its belly, always going with the grain. Finish by combing the brush through the pup’s leg fur slowly. Intertwine these ordinary brushes with a more in-depth, rigorous de-shedding meeting to ensure that no loose hairs are left on their undercoat, which could harden and cause them trouble.

Your German Shepherd needs to be bathed frequently. For a dog with healthy skin and a good coat, this is usually only required every few months. Overbathing can deplete your dog’s natural oils, making it dry and unpleasant.

Best Diet

How to Care for a Full Breed German Shepherd? - Healthier Pets Today

A healthy, fully grown adult German Shepherd’s diet should contain 20% – 25% protein, 10% – 15% fat, and 3% – 7% fiber for optimal nutrition. Calorie intake for a low-activity German Shepherd can range from 1,272 to 2,100 or even more for a high-activity German Shepherd. Look for animal proteins as the first ingredient. Look for a “meal” or “by-product meal” within the top 5 components if the primary ingredient is chicken, lamb, beef, or turkey. These are the most concentrated protein sources that your German Shepherd will benefit from.

Most companionship German Shepherds are active or somewhat active and thrive on 20% – 25% protein. To maintain exceptionally busy German Shepherds, feed foods with a guaranteed protein level of 26% or higher. German Shepherds who obtain these dietary protein levels are more likely to function at their top for their busy lifestyle (source).

Adult German Shepherds eat two meals daily, separated by ten or twelve hours. Their activity levels and metabolism influence this. Adhere to feeding times by feeding your dog after breakfast and again after dinner. The food packet also includes feeding instructions for your German Shepherd. These are only guidelines; you may need to adjust based on your dog’s specific needs.

What Not To Feed A German Shepherd

How to Care for a Full Breed German Shepherd? - Healthier Pets Today

The second you realize your dog has consumed a dangerous chemical, you should seek help from a veterinarian. The veterinarians can inform you if your dog has ingested a poisonous substance, what symptoms to look for, and what steps to take next. You might have to take your German Shepherd to the vet’s office to make them sick, or you may be able to keep an eye on them at home for symptoms of adverse effects.

1. Fruits to Avoid

Grapes, currants, rhubarb, unripe tomatoes, and stone fruit, including cherries, peaches, and plums, are all toxic to German Shepherds.

No one understands how grapes, raisins, and sultanas produce poisoning. Still, we realize that they can cause permanent, irreversible kidney problems, which are not often apparent until it’s too late.

Any grape, raisins, or sultana intake should be considered an emergency. In extreme circumstances, this can even result in death. We also don’t know the hazardous dose of grapes; one fruit could be enough to trigger poisoning symptoms in some dogs.

2. General Foods To Avoid

Dough containing any yeast might induce disease in dogs. If the dough is consumed, it continues to expand or swell, causing vomiting, diarrhea, and, in rare circumstances, blockages. After eating, your dog may become ill for a few days. Garlic, onions, and chives (all members of the Allium group of plants) are harmful to dogs, whether raw, cooked, or powdered.

These are frequent ingredients in sauces used in home cooking and always check the label before feeding your dog leftovers. They produce toxicity by causing red blood cell damage, significantly reducing oxygen, and leading to hemolytic anemia. When dogs consume it, irritation of the intestines and stomach occurs, resulting in vomiting, nausea, and acid.