German Shepherd Shedding Cycle: Tips For Dog Owners And Lovers

Have you ever thought about your German Shepherd shedding cycle? These loyal and intelligent dogs are known for their thick double coats, but that beautiful fur comes with its challenges. So, what can you expect when it comes to shedding?

The German Shepherd shedding cycle consists of two major shedding seasons each year. During these times, your furry friend will shed heavily as they prepare for a new coat. Understanding this cycle is key to keeping your home fur-free and your dog comfortable.

In this article, we’ll explore the German Shepherd shedding cycle, discussing when they start shedding, how this cycle works, and what you can do to manage it effectively.

Let’s dive into the details of your German Shepherd shedding cycle!

German Shepherd Hair Growth Phases

To effectively manage your German Shepherd’s shedding, it’s important to understand the different phases of his hair growth cycle.

An infographic showing German Shepherd hair growth phases.

The following are these four phases:

1. Anagen Phase (Growth):

The anagen phase is the growth phase of the hair cycle. This phase starts around the age of 4 to 6 months.

During this time, new hair grows from the hair follicles, making your German Shepherd’s coat thicker and fuller.

2. Catagen Phase (Transition):

The catagen phase is a short, transitional period that follows the anagen phase. This phase also starts around 6 to 7 months of age and lasts for 2-3 weeks.

During this time, hair growth slows down, and the hair follicles begin to shrink.

This phase prepares the hair for the next stage, the resting phase.

Although it’s a short phase, it’s essential for transitioning the hair into the resting phase, setting the stage for future growth and shedding.

3. Telogen Phase (Rest):

The telogen phase is the resting phase of the hair cycle. It begins after the catagen phase and lasts for 3-4 months.

During this phase, hair growth stops completely, and the hair remains in the follicles without falling out.

This phase is crucial for maintaining the health of the hair and follicles.

Even though there is no active hair growth, it’s important to continue regular grooming to keep the coat clean.

The telogen phase allows the hair to rest before it eventually sheds in the exogen phase.

4. Exogen Phase (Exit):

The exogen phase is the shedding phase, where old hairs are released from the follicles to make way for new hair growth.

This phase also starts with your German Shepherd puppy’s shedding usually around the age of 4 to 6 months and continues throughout his life.

The exogen phase reaches its peak during the spring and fall. During this time, you’ll notice an increase in shedding as the old hair falls out for the new one.

German Shepherd Shedding Cycle Timeline

The German Shepherd shedding pattern follows a predictable timeline. They shed throughout the year with some heavy shedding during the shedding seasons.

What months do German Shepherds shed?

1. Seasonal Shedding:

i. Spring Season: (March-May)

During the spring, German Shepherds shed their thick winter coat to prepare for the warmer months.

This process, known as “blowing coat,” involves shedding large amounts of hair over a few weeks.

The shedding can be quite intense, and you’ll likely notice clumps of fur around your home.

matthew young pet polite blog founder with smiling face

“German Shepherds lose their old undercoat twice a year, once in spring and once in fall. This process is called “blowing coat”.”

Source: PurelyPetsInsurance.Co.Uk

ii. Fall Season: (September-November)

Fall brings another heavy shedding period as your German Shepherd prepares for winter.

In the fall, they shed their summer coat, which is thinner and lighter, to make way for a thicker, warmer coat that will protect them from the cold winter months.

This period is similar to spring shedding, with large amounts of hair being shed over several weeks.

2. Year-Round Shedding

German Shepherd shedding cycle

i. Summer Season: (June-August)

In the summer, shedding continues but at a lower intensity. Your German Shepherd’s coat becomes lighter, which helps keep them cool in the heat.

Although the shedding is not as heavy as in the spring and fall, you still need to provide him with regular care and grooming for his coat health and shine.

ii. Winter Season: (December-February)

In the winter, shedding decreases as your GSD maintains their thick winter coat which he gets after the fall shedding season.

However, this doesn’t mean shedding stops entirely. Light shedding continues throughout the season.

Therefore, you need to continue the regular care and grooming routine during these colder months.

Here is a table illustrating German Shepherd shedding levels during different seasons:

SeasonShedding Level
Spring (March-May)High
Summer (June-August)Medium
Fall (September-November)High
Winter (December-February)Medium

How Long Does German Shepherd Shedding Last?

How long does German Shepherd shedding last?

Although German Shepherds shed throughout the year, the heavy shedding periods in spring and fall can last 10-14 days.

However, the length and intensity of shedding can vary based on your dog’s health, diet, and grooming routine.

During these heavy shedding periods, you may find yourself vacuuming more frequently and brushing your dog daily to manage this intensive shedding effectively.

matthew young pet polite blog founder with smiling face

“German Shepherds shed some fur all year, but twice a year they lose their entire undercoat. This process takes 10 days or more.”

Source: K-9Dryers.Com

Is It Normal For German Shepherd Dogs To Shed Huge Amounts Of Hair?

Is it normal for German Shepherds to shed a huge amount of hair?

Yes, it’s normal for German Shepherds to shed large amounts of hair.

German Shepherds are heavy shedders, and you may find them shedding a huge amount of their coats throughout the year, especially during shedding season.

In fact, they’re often affectionately called “German Shedders” due to their tendency to shed so much.

This breed’s double coat is designed to shed, and it’s a natural process for them to release old hair to make way for new growth.

matthew young pet polite blog founder with smiling face

“German Shepherds are known for their heavy shedding, which can be a challenge for some owners.”

Source: PetMD

Do German Shepherds Shed A Lot? Is There Anything You Can Do to Lessen the Shedding?

Yes, German Shepherds shed a lot, they are one of the top shedding dog breeds, losing an average of 1-2 cups of hair per day.

Their shedding is heavy and constant with 8 out of 10 shedding intensity.

German Shepherd dogs shedding cycle.

you can expect to find their hair everywhere – on your bed and pillows, furniture, clothes, and more!

To reduce this huge amount of shedding in your canine friend, you need a good care routine. This includes regular grooming, a balanced diet, and proper nutrition.

Here’s how you can provide him with the care they require to reduce shedding:

1. Daily Brushing:

Brush your German Shepherd daily during shedding seasons and 3-4 times a week the rest of the year to remove loose fur and reduce shedding around the house.

It helps manage the amount of hair your dog sheds and keeps their coat looking healthy.

It also reduces the amount of fur that ends up on your furniture and floors.

Use a slicker brush or an undercoat rake for the best results, as these tools are designed to penetrate thick coats and remove loose hair effectively.

2. High-Quality Diet:

An illustration showing high-quality diet for German Shepherds.

Feed a high-quality diet to keep your dog’s coat healthy and minimize excessive shedding.

Proper nutrition supports skin and coat health, which can significantly reduce the amount of hair your German Shepherd sheds.

Look for dog food that contains essential fatty acids like Omega-3 and Omega-6 to enhance your dog’s coat health.

Consider supplements like fish oil or flaxseed oil if your dog’s diet needs an extra boost in these nutrients.

3. Use De-Shedding Tools:

Use a de-shedding tool during grooming sessions to effectively remove excess fur from the undercoat.

These tools are specifically designed to reduce shedding by targeting the undercoat, where most of the loose hair comes from.

Tools like the Furminator or shedding rakes can make a big difference in managing shedding.

These tools are designed to reach deep into the coat and remove loose hair without damaging the topcoat.

4. Regular Bathing:

Can bathing reduce shedding in German Shepherds?

Bathe your dog regularly with a gentle, dog-specific shampoo to keep the skin and coat clean.

Clean fur is less likely to fall out excessively, and regular baths help manage shedding.

Aim to bathe your furry friend every 6-8 weeks or as needed.

Use a de-shedding shampoo and conditioner to help loosen and remove the undercoat during baths.

Be sure to rinse thoroughly to avoid skin irritation.

5. Keep Your Dog Hydrated:

Provide plenty of fresh water to keep your dog’s skin hydrated. It supports their skin health, which can help decrease the amount of hair your dog sheds.

Make sure your German Shepherd always has access to fresh, clean water.

You can also add moisture to your dog’s diet with wet food or broth to ensure they stay well-hydrated.

Here’s a video guide to help you deal with your German Shepherd shedding issues.

Source: DennisDogTraining YT Channel


Understanding the shedding cycle of your German Shepherd can help you manage their shedding more effectively.

By recognizing the different phases and knowing when to expect heavier shedding, you can be better prepared.

Regular grooming, a healthy diet, and proper care will make a significant difference in controlling the amount of hair around your home.

Remember, shedding is a normal part of your German Shepherd’s life, and with the right approach, you can keep it under control.

Frequently Asked Questions:

How do I stop my German Shepherd from shedding so much?

While it’s not possible to stop shedding completely, you can reduce it significantly by regular grooming, a balanced diet, using a de-shedding tool, and maintaining good health.

Why is my German Shepherd shedding so much in the winter?

German Shepherds shed heavily in winter due to seasonal coat changes, cold weather, dry air, and indoor heating. Regular grooming, a balanced diet, and a humidifier can help reduce shedding during colder weather conditions.

How to de-shed a German Shepherd?

To de-shed a German Shepherd, brush them regularly, bathe every 6-8 weeks, and use a de-shedding tool to remove loose hair and tangles. Using a de-shedding supplement can also help reduce shedding.

Why does my German Shepherd have bald spots?

German Shepherds can develop bald spots due to skin allergies, fleas, ticks, hot spots, hormonal imbalances, nutritional deficiencies, autoimmune disorders, and skin infections.

How often should I use FURminator on a German Shepherd?

It’s recommended to use it 2-3 times a week during shedding season. During non-shedding seasons, you can reduce the frequency to once a week.

Why is my German Shepherd shedding more than usual?

Excessive shedding in German Shepherds can be caused by stress, hormonal changes, skin allergies, poor diet, or underlying health issues, consult a veterinarian if your GSD is shedding more than usual.

What Months Do German Shepherds Shed?

German Shepherds typically shed heavily during the spring (March to May) and fall (September to November), with the most intense shedding occurring in April and October. However, they can shed to some extent throughout the year due to their double coat.

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