Expert Tips For Grooming Your Long-Haired German Shepherd With Ease

Long-haired German Shepherds are loyal, intelligent, and stunning dogs, but their luxurious coats require special attention and regular grooming to keep them in top condition.

Therefore, you may worry about how to groom your long-haired German Shepherd without causing discomfort or stress.

Their thick, flowing fur can easily become matted and tangled, making grooming a difficult part of their care routine.

Fortunately, there are effective ways to groom your long-haired German Shepherd comfortably. By using gentle grooming techniques, selecting the right tools, and dealing with their shedding carefully, you can manage their coat and overall hygiene with ease.

In this article, you’ll discover practical tips and methods for grooming your long-haired German Shepherd safely and effectively.

Read on to learn everything you need to know about grooming your long-haired German Shepherd.

Long-Haired German Shepherd’s Coat Characteristics

An infographic showing Long haired German Shepherd coat characteristics.

1. Shedding Patterns:

Long-haired German Shepherds are known to shed throughout the year, with two major shedding seasons. During these periods, shedding can be quite intense.

2. Grooming Needs:

Long-haired German Shepherds require regular grooming to prevent matting and tangling. They should be brushed 3-4 times a week, with extra attention paid to areas prone to matting.

3. Length and Texture:

The outer coat is long, with hairs typically reaching 2-4 inches (5-10 cm) in length. The coat is coarse to the touch, with a slightly wavy texture.

4. Color Variations:

Long-haired German Shepherds come in a variety of colors, including black, white, black and tan, sable, and grey. Some dogs may also have a small amount of white markings on their chest or paws.

5. Matting Risks:

Long-haired German Shepherds are at high risk of matting, particularly around the ears, neck, and legs. Matting can cause discomfort, and skin irritation, and even lead to infections if left unaddressed.

Why Grooming Is Important For Your Long-Haired German Shepherd

How to groom a long-haired German Shepherd dog?

First, it keeps your dog clean and healthy. Regular grooming removes dirt, dead hair, and parasites like ticks and fleas. It also helps to prevent matting, which can be very painful for your dog.

Second, regular grooming helps detect health issues early, catching signs of skin problems, infections, or lumps. This ensures prompt care and prevents minor issues from becoming severe.

Finally, grooming is a great way to bond with your dog. It can be a relaxing and enjoyable time for both of you.

Your dog will love the attention, and you will love how beautiful and happy your dog looks after grooming.

Tools You Need To Groom Your Long-Haired German Shepherd

To effectively groom your long-haired German Shepherd, you will need a variety of tools. These grooming tools will help you make the process easier and more enjoyable for you and your dog.

How to groom a Long haired German Shepherd?

Here are the most important ones:

  • Brushes: You need a slicker brush, a pin brush, and an undercoat rake. These brushes help to remove loose hair and prevent matting.
  • Comb: A wide-tooth comb is great for detangling the knots.
  • Scissors and Clippers: These are used for trimming the hair around the paws and other areas.
  • Nail Clippers: Keep your dog’s nails trimmed to prevent discomfort and injury.
  • Towels and Blow Dryer: Use towels and a blow dryer in a cool setting to dry your dog after a bath.
  • Shedding Blade: Useful during heavy shedding seasons to remove excess fur.

Step-by-Step Grooming Process For Long-Haired German Shepherds

Grooming your long-haired German Shepherd involves several steps to ensure their coat remains healthy and beautiful. Follow this step-by-step guide to achieve the best results.

A pet groomer gently brushing the German Shepherd coat in his pet salon.

1. Brush Your Long-Haired German Shepherd:

Begin by gently brushing your dog with a slicker brush. This brush helps to remove loose hair and dirt.

Start at the head and work your way down to the tail, brushing in the direction of hair growth.

After the slicker brush, use the pin brush to get deeper into the coat. This brush helps to remove tangles and matting. Be gentle, especially if you find any knots.

Use the undercoat rake to remove loose undercoat hair to prevent matting and keep your dog cool.

Finally, use the wide-tooth comb to go through the entire coat and remove any remaining tangles.

2. Bathe Your Long-Haired German Shepherd:

Fill a bathtub or a large basin with lukewarm water. Gently wet your dog’s coat using a cup or a handheld showerhead. Avoid getting water in the ears and eyes.

matthew young pet polite blog founder with smiling face

“When bathing your German Shepherd, use lukewarm water, as water that is too hot can dry out their skin, while water that is too cold can cause discomfort and chilling.”


Apply dog-friendly shampoo to your dog’s coat. Gently massage it in, making sure to get all areas, including the belly and legs.

Rinse all the shampoo out of your dog’s coat. Make sure no shampoo is left, as it can cause skin irritation.

If you are using a conditioner, apply it now and leave it on for 1-2 minutes. Then rinse it out thoroughly.

Use towels to dry your dog as much as possible. Then use a blow dryer on a cool setting to finish drying the coat.

3. Trimming Their Coat:

Shaving or heavily trimming your long-haired German Shepherd’s coat is not recommended. This can harm their natural temperature control.

However, you can trim some fur to keep it clean and healthy.

An illustration showing how to trim long-haired German Shepherd dog.

Use scissors to trim the hair around your dog’s paws. This helps to prevent matting and keeps the paws clean.

Gently trim the hair around the ears to prevent tangles and matting. Be very careful not to cut too close to the skin.

Use scissors to trim the hair on the tail if it is too long or bushy. Make sure to keep it even and natural-looking.

If needed, you can use clippers to trim the hair on your dog’s body. Use a long guard to keep the coat looking natural and not too short.

4. Cleaning Ears:

Look inside your dog’s ears for any signs of dirt, redness, or infection.

Apply a few drops of dog-friendly ear cleaner to a cotton ball.

Gently wipe the inside of your dog’s ears with the cotton ball. Be careful not to go too deep into the ear canal.

Use a dry cotton ball to remove any excess cleaner and moisture.

5. Trimming Nails:

Look at your dog’s nails to see if they need trimming. If they are clicking on the floor, they are too long.

Use dog nail clippers to trim the tips of the nails. Be careful not to cut too close to the quick, which is the pink part inside the nail.

Trim a little bit at a time to avoid cutting the quick. If you are unsure, ask your vet or a groomer for help.

6. Teeth Cleaning:

Use toothpaste made for dogs. Human toothpaste can be harmful to dogs.

Use a toothbrush made for dogs or a fingerbrush.

Gently brush your dog’s teeth in circular motions. Focus on the outer surfaces of the teeth.

Brush your dog’s teeth at least 2-3 times weekly to keep them clean and healthy.

Here’s a video guide to help you groom your long-haired German Shepherd:

Source: Girl With The Dogs YT Channel

Dealing With Shedding Of Your Long-Haired German Shepherd

How to groom a Long haired German Shepherd dog?

1. Brush Regularly:

Brushing your long-haired German Shepherd dog regularly is the best way to handle the shedding. Brushing will help you get rid of loose hair and shedding.

Further, it prevents the hair from getting tangled and matted.

Daily brushing is ideal, but if that’s not possible, aim for at least 3-4 times a week.

2. Bathe Gently:

Bathing helps loosen and remove dead hair, reduces shedding, and prevents skin irritations.

Bathing every 6-8 weeks is recommended, but if your dog gets dirty or develops a strong odor, bathe them as needed.

3. Use a Deshedding Tool:

These tools remove dead hair and undercoat, reducing shedding by up to 90%, and help prevent matting and tangling.

Use a de-shedding tool, such as a Furminator or shedding rake, 1-2 times a week, in the direction of hair growth.

Be gentle, as de-shedding tools can be harsh on sensitive skin, and avoid using them on sensitive areas, such as the face, ears, and paws.

4. Keep Their Coat Healthy:

Grooming the long-haired German Shepherd dog.

To keep your long-haired German Shepherd’s coat healthy, ensure a high-quality diet rich in omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids.

Consider adding fish oil supplements and maintaining proper hydration with fresh water.

Provide regular vet check-ups to identify and treat any allergies or skin conditions promptly.

5. Consider a Humidifier:

Dry air increases shedding, but a humidifier can help by keeping the air moist and reducing dry, itchy skin.

Use a humidifier, especially in dry seasons to prevent mold growth and keep your dog comfortable.

Keep the humidity level between 30-50%, and adjust the humidifier as needed to maintain a comfortable level.

6. Keep Your Home Clean:

Regular vacuuming and dusting remove loose hair and prevent it from circulating in the air, making it easier to breathe for you and your dog.

Use a vacuum cleaner with a HEPA filter, which captures 99.97% of particles as small as 0.3 microns, and dust with a damp cloth to trap dog hair.

Remove dog hair from furniture and clothing with a lint roller or sticky roller, and use a robot vacuum to help keep your home clean between vacuuming sessions.

Which Dog’s Grooming Is Easy: Long-Haired German Shepherd Vs Short Haired

A long-haired German Shepherd dog sitting in a pet salon during a grooming session.

Short-haired German Shepherds are easier to groom. Their short coat needs brushing 3-4 times a week.

This makes them great for busy people who want a pet that’s easy to care for. They shed a little, but the short fur is not very noticeable, so you spend less time cleaning up.

On the other hand, long-haired German Shepherds need more grooming. Their long, beautiful fur needs daily brushing to avoid tangles and mats.

matthew young pet polite blog founder with smiling face

“Grooming is crucial for long-haired German Shepherds as their thick coats are more prone to matting and tangling than shorter-haired breeds.”


They also pick up more dirt and debris, so they need baths more often, especially when they are shedding.

Both types shed about the same amount, but the long fur of a long-haired German Shepherd is more noticeable.

This means more cleanup around your home.

Here’s a comparison of the grooming needs of long-haired and short-haired German Shepherds:

Grooming AspectShort-Haired German ShepherdLong-Haired German Shepherd
Brushing Frequency3-4 times a weekDaily
SheddingModerate, less noticeableModerate, more noticeable
Tangle RiskLowHigh
Bath FrequencyOccasionally, as neededMore frequent, especially during shedding seasons
Debris CollectionMinimalHigh
Grooming TimeLow maintenance, quickHigh maintenance, time-consuming

If you prefer a pet that requires minimal grooming time, a short-haired German Shepherd is the better choice. They are easier to groom and take less time.

However, if you enjoy grooming and can dedicate time to it, a long-haired German Shepherd can be very rewarding.

Choose the one that fits your lifestyle and grooming preferences best!


Grooming a long-haired German Shepherd may seem difficult, but it becomes a manageable and rewarding task with the right techniques and tools.

Regular grooming not only keeps your dog’s coat beautiful and healthy but also strengthens the bond between you and your pet.

Remember to be patient and gentle, creating a positive experience for your German Shepherd.

By following the tips outlined in this guide, you can ensure your long-haired German Shepherd remains comfortable and well-groomed.

Prioritize their grooming routine, and you’ll enjoy the many benefits of having a happy, healthy, and beautifully groomed companion.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Should you trim a long-haired German Shepherd?

Yes, trimming is necessary to prevent matting and tangling, especially around the eyes, ears, and paws. Trimming also helps maintain a neat appearance and prevents overgrowth.

How often should you bathe a long-haired German Shepherd?

Bathe every 6-8 weeks, or as needed, to prevent skin irritations and keep the coat clean. Over-bathing can strip the coat of its natural oils, leading to dryness and dandruff.

What kind of grooming does a long-haired German Shepherd need?

Long-haired German Shepherds require regular brushing (daily or every other day), nail trimming, ear cleaning, and dental care. They also need regular trimming and clipping to prevent matting and tangling.

How To Keep Your Long-Haired German Shepherd Groomed?

Keep your long-haired German Shepherd groomed by brushing daily or every other day, bathing every 6-8 weeks, trimming regularly, and using a de-shedding tool to reduce shedding.

What are common grooming mistakes to avoid for long-haired German Shepherds?

Avoid using human hair products, brushing too hard, bathing too frequently, neglecting regular trimming, and not drying your dog thoroughly after bathing, as these can lead to coat damage and skin irritation.

Resources Used For Research:

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