Best Shampoo For German Shepherds: How and When to Bathe Your GSD


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The German Shepherd is one of the most popular dog breeds. He is second on the AKC’s most popular dog breeds. And he is also one of the smartest dogs. The GSD finds his way in military and police work, but he is also a popular family pet. He is fun, lovable, and sociable. And that means lots of playing in the dirt, grass, and outside. To get him clean, you need the best shampoo for German Shepherds.

Your dog’s healthy fur is quite important. Now, you should not bathe your dog often. You can brush him daily, but as for baths, do it once every few months, or when he gets dirty. Our best pick is Buddy Wash dog shampoo, recommended by many German Shepherd owners. What makes it great is the two-in-one combination. You get a shampoo and conditioner that cleans and moisturizes the coat.

With that in mind, let’s take a look at all our picks for the best shampoo for German Shepherds.

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1. Buddy Wash Lavender and Mint Shampoo

Buddy Wash is the shampoo most owners recommend for their German Shepherd. And we can see why they like it. This two-in-one combination cleans and moisturizes your dog’s coat while also providing a soothing bath experience.

Made with natural herbs and oils, the shampoo is safe for frequent use, and leaves your dog refreshed and smelling good. It’s a gentle formula, and you can use it on puppies as well.

Consider the natural effects of lavender and the therapeutic power of mint. It’s a formula your dog will love. Build a rich lather, rinse well, and then towel dry your GSD.

Why do we like it?

  • Gentle formula
  • Made with natural herbs and oils
  • Safe for frequent use
  • Safe for puppies

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2. iGroom Shampoo Products

There are a couple of options you can choose. We recommend the heavy-duty Squeaky Clean line; it’s designed to break up the heaviest greasy build-ups. With chamomile extracts, this shampoo soothes the skin and promotes a healthy coat.

The best part about the shampoo is you can dilute it with water for economical everyday use. Paraben- and SLS-free, it’s safe for use on all dogs.

If you need something more potent, go for the Charcoal and Keratin formula. It improves the health of your dog’s coat and adds moisture.

Why do we like it?

  • Different formulas for different needs
  • Luxury products
  • You can dilute the shampoo for economical everyday use

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3. Best Shot Ultra Wash Shampoo

One gallon from this professional-grade shampoo costs 30 bucks. If you wash your dog once every few months, it will last for many years. The shampoo is highly concentrated, and a little goes a long way. You can get a shampoo bottle to make it easier to mix the right amount.

Protein-enriched with hydrating conditioners, the shampoo will nourish your baby’s coat. It’s recommended for double-coated breeds, and you can use it to reduce shedding and brushing time. You can say it’s the best dog shampoo for shedding as well. It features a refreshing herbal scent, and the best part is that the shampoo is hypoallergenic and soap-free.

If you want to take things to the next level, use it in combination with Best Shot conditioner and vitalizing mist. It’s a three-step process for bathing your dog.

Why do we like it?

  • Low suds and quick rinsing
  • Protein-enriched
  • Affordable price
  • Recommended for double-coated dogs

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4. TropiClean Papaya and Coconut

TropiClean was the first company to introduce biodegradable packaging. You have to give them props for that. This shampoo contains a blend of papaya, coconut, and other tropical ingredients, and it will pamper your dog with a luxurious and rich lather.

It’s another 2-in-1 shampoo and conditioner, and it helps replenish the natural moisture balance of the coat and skin. It also helps to keep the coat soft, shiny, and great-smelling. The best part about the shampoo is the lasting fragrance.

And you don’t have to worry about washing away spot-on treatment. The gentle formula is soap-free, and you can use it along with topical treatments.

Why do we like it?

  • Mild coconut cleanser
  • Lasting fragrance
  • Biodegradable packaging
  • Quick rinse

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5. Miracle Coat Shampoo

Some dog owners don’t have the time and space to bathe a German Shepherd. But that shouldn’t stop you from taking care of your pet. Enter the Miracle Coat waterless shampoo. You just spray this shampoo on the dog, massage it into a lather, and then towel dry. You can brush it out as well, and it keeps the coat untangled between baths.

This easy bathing solution for your dog contains natural and pharmaceutical-grade ingredients, enriching the natural qualities of your pet’s coat.

Why do we like it?

  • Easy to use
  • Pharmaceutical-grade ingredients
  • Keeps the coat untangled

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6. Buddy Wash Green Tea and Bergamot

We have another product by Buddy Wash. This one contains botanical extracts as well. The difference is in the formula. This time, we have green tea and bergamot for a more refreshing scent. It’s made in the USA with ingredients from the garden.

You can use the 2-in-1 formula to moisturize your dog’s coat. Hydrating oils make it easy. Besides green tea and bergamot, the shampoo also contains rosemary and sage extracts. It works like a dog deodorizer that promotes a beautiful coat, leaving a lustrous, soft coat that smells amazing.

The soothing formula is safe for frequent use.

Why do we like it?

  • Amazing smell
  • Works as dog deodorizer
  • Two -in in-one shampoo and conditioner formula

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7. Jax N Daisy Anti-Itch Shampoo

This great shampoo comes in a bigger bottle, and it’s designed for those with many dogs or a grooming business. Of course, you can get a smaller bottle as well. An antibacterial and antiseptic shampoo, it helps treat dogs with dermatitis. You can use it against allergies, flea bites, and environmental conditions.

It contains natural ingredients like lemon oil and witch hazel, but it’s also infused with lavender, rosemary, ad chamomile oils. These soothing oils provide relief to irritated skin.

You can use it for any skin issue. And if you’re not satisfied, the company provides a 100% money-back guarantee.

Why do we like it?

  • Helps with skin issues
  • Contains natural ingredients
  • Company provides a money-back guarantee

What Is So Special about the German Shepherd Coat?

German Shepherds have a thick, double layer coat. That’s why the German Shepherd maintenance plan needs planning. They are also high shedders, with longer hair than other dogs. For the most part, grooming and bathing needs are similar to most dogs.

They might display symptoms that affect their skin after exposure to allergens. For example, Itchiness happens due to a flea allergy or bacterial skin infection. There are also other forms of contact dermatitis. If your dog has skin issues, look for the best shampoo for itchy German Shepherds.

The good news is that the German Shepherd has a profuse coat and naturally oily skin. They don’t need frequent baths.

How often should you bathe a GSD?

There are different opinions on this matter. You have to remember that a German Shepherd hates baths. You don’t want to force your dog into an uncomfortable situation.

With that in mind, most dog owners bathe their dogs once every 4 to 6 weeks. That is the general recommendation for most dogs. With German Shepherds, you need to wait a bit more. Owners and experts recommend waiting several months between baths. Only bathe your dog if he gets very dirty.

The GSD has a double coat that protects his skin. Bathing him too often could strip the skin of natural oils.

How to make a GSD smell better

Some owners recommend using the best dog shampoo for odor for a German Shepherd. Yes, that will make your dog smell better. But you can’t bathe your dog every week or two.

You have to take action between baths. You can try using a dry shampoo for dogs; apply it before or after brushing to give your dog a fresh scent. Don’t forget regular brushing as well. Clean your dog’s ears and teeth too.

And most importantly, don’t ignore his diet. A healthy diet means your dog will smell nice and his coat will be healthy. We recommend finding the best food for German Shepherds.

How to Find the Best Shampoo for German Shepherds?

Grooming your GSD is the best way to control shedding and keep his skin healthy. Regular brushing removes loose and dead hair. The German Shepherd isn’t prone to many skin issues; the only major concern is food allergies.

When it comes to choosing the best shampoo for a German Shepherd, we have to point to several factors. We said before that long-haired German Shepherd grooming is a challenge.

Here are the factors to consider:

Natural ingredients

Some German shepherds might have sensitive skin. Look for a shampoo made with natural ingredients, and avoid any chemicals and harsh ingredients like parabens, sulfates, and phosphates.


One of the reasons why we bathe our dogs is to make them smell fresh. Dogs can develop a doggy smell between baths. Choose a shampoo that has deodorizing and long-lasting agents.


German Shepherds need a lot of moisture for their skin. It’s the most important part of the grooming and bathing process. Natural moisturizing agents like oatmeal are great.

pH balance

Dogs have different pH values than humans. Their skin pH value is between 6.5 and 7.5, which is why you have to pick a shampoo balanced for dogs.


Last, but not least, choosing a two-in-one shampoo works best for German shepherds, which why we picked Buddy Wash as our best option. It conditions your dog’s coat between baths. Otherwise, you need to get a standalone or leave-in conditioner.

German Shepherd Bathing Tips

The GSD is an active breed. He excels in many sports, and he often gets dirty in the process. So, if your dog spends a lot of time outdoors, you might want to change your bathing schedule. Most experts recommend bathing a German Shepherd once every 8 to 12 weeks. Here are some other bathing tips for German Shepherds:

  • Brush your dog thoroughly before a bath to remove loose, dead hairs.
  • Spend extra time brushing during blowout season.
  • Avoid bathing your dog too often.
  • Be careful with the ears—don’t get them wet during a bath.
  • Take your time lathering the shampoo and working through the coat.
  • Spray your dog with a handheld sprayer to rinse him and remove soap quickly.


As you know, the German Shepherd is a large breed with a medium-length coat. He has a thick and double coat. And he sheds throughout the year and two times during blowing season. To keep his coat shiny and healthy, you need a proper shampoo.

But what is the best shampoo for German Shepherds? Well, we hope we gave you plenty of options. For our best options, choose between Buddy Wash 2-in-1 shampoo and a luxury option like iGroom. The Best Shot Ultra Wash is a great budget pick. You get a gallon of shampoo for a low price, and it’s effective.


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