German Shepherds VS Golden Retrievers: Who Sheds More?

If you’re thinking about welcoming a new furry companion into your home, you’re probably curious about how much hair you’ll need to manage. Specifically if you are considering one of German Shepherd or Golden Retriever, you might be wondering, “Do German Shepherds shed more than Golden Retrievers?”

In this comprehensive guide, we’ll explore the shedding behaviors of German Shepherds and Golden Retrievers in detail, providing you with the information you need to make an informed decision.

By the end of this article, you’ll have a clear understanding of how these two popular breeds compare in terms of shedding.

German Shepherd vs. Golden Retriever Coat Comparison

An infographic showing German Shepherd vs Golden Retriever coat comparison.

1. Coat Length:

When you touch their fur, you’ll notice that German Shepherds have medium-length coats, usually 1 to 2 inches (2.5 to 5 cm) long.

Golden Retrievers, on the other hand, have longer coats, measuring 2 to 3 inches (5 to 7.5 cm). This difference affects how they look and their grooming needs.

2. Coat Thickness:

German Shepherds have a double coat with medium thickness, which protects them from weather.

Goldens have a thicker double coat that sheds a lot. This difference in thickness impacts how much they shed and how often you need to groom them.

3. Coat Texture:

German Shepherds have a rough outer coat and a soft undercoat, giving them a distinct feel.

Golden Retrievers have a dense outer coat and a soft undercoat, making their fur feel lush.

These texture differences affect their grooming needs and how their fur feels to the touch.

4. Coat Layers:

Both breeds have two layers: an undercoat and a topcoat. However, Golden Retrievers have a special ruff around their neck, which adds an extra layer to their coat.

This unique feature makes them different from German Shepherds.

5. Shedding Density:

Shedding is natural for both breeds, but they do it differently. German Shepherds shed a lot twice a year, while Golden

Retrievers shed heavily all year round. This means you will deal with more loose hair from Golden Retrievers throughout the year.

German Shepherd vs. Golden Retriever Shedding Patterns

Shedding is a natural process for both German Shepherds and Golden Retrievers, but their shedding patterns show some distinct differences.

German Shepherd vs Golden Retriever shedding pattern.

1. German Shepherd Shedding Patterns:

The shedding pattern of German Shepherds is consistent throughout the year but can be more intense during certain seasons.

They have a double coat, consisting of a dense undercoat and a harsh outer coat. This undercoat is primarily responsible for their shedding.

Throughout the year, you’ll find that German Shepherds shed a moderate amount of hair.

However, during the spring and fall, they go through a period known as “blowing their coat.” This is when they shed their undercoat to prepare for the upcoming season.

In the spring, they shed their thick winter coat to get ready for the warmer weather. In the fall, they shed their lighter summer coat to make way for a thicker winter coat.

Therefore, you may find a heavy amount of fur around your home during these seasonal changes.

2. Golden Retriever Shedding Patterns:

Golden Retriever shedding pattern.

Golden Retrievers also have a double coat, which includes a dense undercoat and a water-repellent outer coat.

Like German Shepherds, they shed throughout the year, but their shedding pattern is somewhat different.

Golden Retrievers shed moderately all year, with more shedding in the spring and fall.

Their shedding is usually more manageable than German Shepherds, who shed a lot during these seasons.

Golden Retrievers’ undercoat sheds to adjust to temperature changes, just like German Shepherds.

However, their fur is longer and softer, which can make it seem less dense when it sheds.

This doesn’t mean they shed less; the fur just might be less noticeable. During peak shedding seasons, you’ll see more fur around your home.

This video will guide you on how much Golden Retrievers shed.

Source: Emily Marie YT Channel

Shedding Differences Between German Shepherds & Golden Retrievers

Understanding how German Shepherds and Golden Retrievers shed can help you manage their grooming needs. Here are the key differences:

Do German Shepherds shed more than Golden Retrievers.

1. German Shepherds Have a Heavier Shedding Season:

German Shepherds experience a more intense shedding season compared to Golden Retrievers.

This means there are specific times of the year, typically during spring and fall, when they lose their coats heavily.

During these seasons, you’ll notice a significant increase in the amount of hair they shed, making it seem like your home is constantly covered in fur.

2. Golden Retrievers Shed Consistently:

Unlike German Shepherds, Golden Retrievers shed steadily throughout the year. Their shedding doesn’t fluctuate much with the seasons, so you can expect a consistent amount of hair loss all year round.

While this means you’ll always have some hair to deal with, it’s usually more manageable and less overwhelming than the heavy shedding periods of German Shepherds.

3. German Shepherds Shed in Clumps:

One of the more noticeable aspects of German Shepherd shedding is that they lose their hair in clumps. This is particularly evident during their heavy shedding seasons.

You might find large chunks of fur around your house, which can be quite a handful to clean up.

These clumps can get stuck in carpets, on furniture, and just about everywhere else.

4. Golden Retrievers Shed in Smaller Amounts:

Do Golden Retrievers shed more than German Shepherd dogs?

Golden Retrievers, on the other hand, shed their hair in smaller, more manageable amounts. Their shedding might be constant, but it’s not as overwhelming as finding clumps of hair.

This makes it easier to keep your home clean, as you’ll be dealing with less hair overall at any given time.

5. German Shepherds Require More Grooming:

Due to their heavier shedding seasons and the way they shed in clumps, German Shepherds require more grooming than Golden Retrievers.

During their shedding seasons, regular brushing is crucial to manage the amount of loose hair and prevent it from taking over your home.

Golden Retrievers also need regular grooming, but it’s generally less intensive since their shedding is more consistent and in smaller amounts.

6. Both have different Fur Texture:

The texture of the fur that sheds is also different. German Shepherds have coarser fur, which can be harder to clean up and might stick to furniture and clothing more stubbornly.

Golden Retrievers have softer, silkier fur that might be easier to brush off surfaces but can spread out more because of its longer strands.

Here’s a simple table showing the differences between shedding patterns of German Shepherds and Golden Retrievers:

FeatureGerman ShepherdsGolden Retrievers
Shedding VolumeHighModerate
Shedding FrequencyYear-round, with heavy seasonal sheddingYear-round, with increased shedding in spring and fall
Undercoat DensityVery denseDense
Shedding Pattern“Blowing” coat during seasonal changesIncreased shedding during seasonal changes
Fur TextureCoarseLonger and softer
Noticeability of SheddingHighModerate

Who Sheds More Golden Retriever Or German Shepherd?

Why German Shepherds shed more than Golden Retrievers?

After this comparison, you may find that German Shepherds shed more than Golden Retrievers.

Their thick undercoat and the process of “blowing” their coat lead to more shedding, especially during the spring and fall seasons.

This shedding season can last around 10-14 days, during which they lose their entire undercoat, resulting in a significant amount of loose hair.

The shedding can be intense, with large amounts of hair falling out daily.

On average GSDs shed 10-12% of their coat per month.

How Bad Is Golden Retriever Shedding?

Although Golden Retrievers also have a thick double coat that sheds consistently throughout the year, they do not shed as heavily as German Shepherds.

Golden Retrievers shed at a steady rate, with a smaller amount of hair falling out daily, and an average shedding rate of 6-8% of their coat per month.

While they still require regular grooming to manage their shedding, it’s not as intense as German Shepherds.

How Can You Help Your Golden Retriever Reduce Shedding?

Reducing your Golden Retriever’s shedding requires regular care and attention. Although you cannot completely stop your furry friend from shedding, but you can reduce it to a certain extent.

How to reduce Golden Retriever shedding?

Here are detailed steps to help manage their shedding:

1. Brush Regularly:

Start by brushing your Golden Retriever regularly. Make a routine for brushing 3-4 times a week to remove loose fur and prevent it from spreading around your home.

A slicker brush or de-shedding tool, such as the Furminator, works well for this.

Brushing not only reduces shedding but also keeps your dog’s coat healthy and shiny by distributing natural oils throughout their fur.

matthew young pet polite blog founder with smiling face

“Brushing your Golden Retriever regularly will prevent matting, and tangling, and remove loose hair, keeping their coat healthy and looking great!”

Source: Canine Journal

2. Provide High-Quality Diet:

Ensure your Golden Retriever is on a high-quality diet. Good nutrition supports a healthy coat and skin, which can minimize excessive shedding.

Look for dog food rich in Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids, as these nutrients are essential for maintaining a healthy coat.

You can also consider supplements like fish oil if your vet recommends it.

3. Keep Your Dog Hydrated:

Keep your Golden Retriever hydrated. Fresh water is essential for maintaining healthy skin and fur.

Proper hydration can significantly reduce the amount of loose hair. Make sure your dog always has access to clean, fresh water.

You can also add moisture to their diet by incorporating wet food or broth.

3. Bathe Him When Needed:

An illustration explaining how to bathe a Golden Retriever.

Regular baths are also helpful. Use a gentle, dog-specific shampoo to keep their coat clean and reduce shedding.

Bathing helps remove loose fur and dirt, but be careful not to over-bathe, as this can dry out their skin and lead to more shedding.

Bathing your Golden Retriever every 6 weeks is enough for them.

5. Maintain A Clean Environment:

Vacuum and clean your home regularly to manage the loose fur. A good vacuum cleaner with a pet hair attachment can make this task easier.

Washing your dog’s bedding and grooming tools regularly will also help keep shedding under control.


In conclusion, if shedding worries you, it’s important to know that German Shepherds usually shed more than Golden Retrievers.

German Shepherds have a thick undercoat and shed a lot, especially during seasonal changes.

By keeping up with grooming and feeding a healthy diet, you can reduce shedding and enjoy your time with these great dogs.

Whether you pick a German Shepherd or a Golden Retriever, understanding their shedding habits will help you maintain a happy home for you and your pet.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Do Golden Retrievers shed a lot?

Yes, Golden Retrievers shed a lot. They have a thick double coat that sheds year-round, with increased shedding in spring and fall.

How often do long-haired dogs like Huskies and German Shepherds shed?

Long-haired dogs like Huskies and German Shepherds shed year-round, with heavy shedding periods during spring and fall when they blow their coats.

Do Golden Retrievers shed more than Labs?

Golden Retrievers and Labs both shed heavily, but Goldens often shed more due to their longer, thicker double coats compared to the shorter coats of Labs.

Do field lines shed less than show lines?

Field lines and show lines of dogs generally shed similarly, though field lines may have a slightly lighter coat, potentially resulting in slightly less shedding.

Are German Shepherds different from Golden Retrievers in terms of shedding?

Yes, German Shepherds shed more consistently year-round due to their dense double coat, while Golden Retrievers have seasonal shedding spikes in addition to regular shedding.

Resources Used For Research:

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