Do German Shepherds love water? GSD Colony

Do German Shepherds loves water?

Many of us who own German Shepherd dog knows that they really don’t like bathing or showering, so then we wonder, do they like water or not? Do we harm their health when we shower them? How long German Shepherds can be in the water?

All owners want to know the answer to these questions, and in this article, we will cover all of them. There are many interesting things behind their “crazy” behavior once they jump into the water.

Let’s now discover all secrets behind their crazy behavior.

Do German Shepherd drink a lot of water?

German Shepherd is a large breed dog, and on average, they need around 2.5 liters (0.66 gallons or 85 oz) of drinking water every day.

If your German Shepherd loves to play with the water and spills water all around, he will probably need more than 2.5 liters in one day. :)

This amount of water (2.5 liters) is for an adult German Shepherd, and below, you can find in our table how much water should your German Shepherd dog drink in one single day, based on his weight.

Do German Shepherds drink a lot of water - GSD Colony

Recommend water amount per day for German Shepherd dog (oz)

Dog weight (lb)  Recommended water amount (oz)
16 16
33 33
50 50
67 67
85 85
128 128

Recommend water amount per day for German Shepherd dog (liters)

Dog weight (kg)  Recommended water amount (liters)
7 0.5
14 1
22 1.5
30 2
38 2.5
58 3.7

Your German Shepherd should always have available clean drinking water, and sometimes he will drink less, and in some cases more, like after running, training, or any other activity.

There is not one ultimate rule on how much water should your German Shepherd drink in one day, but try to follow this rule: 1 ounce per 1 pound ( 30 ml per 450 grams).

If you notice that your German Shepherd drinks too much water for a couple of days, without any previous activity, this is a symptom that you shouldn't ignore.

Increased water intake can be a sign of some health issues in your German Shepherd like:

  • Fever
  • Liver disease
  • Kidney failure
  • Diabetes mellitus
  • Cushing’s syndrome

We recommend you not wait for any second more and contact your veterinarian if you notice that your German Shepherd drinks too much water for a long period of time.

Do German Shepherds love water?

Yes, German Shepherd loves natural water, where they can play, run, and explore, but they are not really big fans of showering and bathing.

If your German Shepherd doesn’t like the water, believe it or not, this is maybe because of you.

The first steps are most important, and if you didn’t introduce the water to your German Shepherd puppy on the right way, they may be afraid of water later.

Start small and think big.

If you just got a German Shepherd dog, you should always take small steps. For example, from our personal experience, the best way to introduce water to your German Shepherd dog is to start with small steps.

Bathing would be ideal for the first time and make sure that always reward your German Shepherd puppy. By introducing your puppy to the water this way, they will realize that water isn’t scary at all. Also, a pool is a great idea, if you have the conditions for something like that.

German Shepherd enjoy river water - GSD Colony

Later you can take your German Shepherd into “deeper waters”. The perfect time for something like this is of course summer so that you can be near your German Shepherd in the water when he makes the first step.

If his first experience with water was great, trust us, he will love water more than anything! Be careful, and never rush, take small steps always.

Does German Shepherd love cold water?

If the temperature is above 7 °C (45 °F), then this is absolutely fine for your German Shepherd dog. 

If the temperature is below 7 °C (45 °F), your German Shepherd can surfer later from the hypothermia, and also can lead to frostbite.

The average body temperature of German Shepherds is 38-39 °C, and they have a bigger tolerance for cold than humans, but this doesn’t mean that your German Shepherd should be all day into the water.

According to the World Health Organization, the recommended water temperature for dogs is around 70 °F (21 °C).

Everything above that is fine (not counting extremely hot water), and if the water temperature is below that, your German Shepherd shouldn't spend too much in the river, sea, or lake.

If outside it’s freezing cold, and the water temperature is too low, don’t let your German Shepherd enter the water.

How much time German Shepherd can spend in the water?

This depends on many factors. For example, if your German Shepherd jumps into the water, and the whole time he swims, make sure that he makes a pause after 5-10 minutes. 

If your German Shepherd just exploring the river, lake, or sea, without too much swimming, then is absolutely fine to let your German Shepherd as much as you want to explore.

But, before you let your German Shepherd explore, make sure that he is well-trained and has safety equipment

When we say well-trained, we mean that your German Shepherd will back to you after you call him (recall). This is the basic command, and you should teach your dog that if you plan to visit a place like this.

Most of the dogs can’t predict how far they can get. Unfortunately, it happened that the German Shepherd that went swimming did not manage to return to the shore, but got tired and drowned.

Water currents are the main problem for them because their body has a large surface and that disrupts their swimming direction.

German Shepherd safety life swimming jacket - GSD Colony

That is why we recommend to every dog owner to provide his dog with a safety life jacket when he is near the deeper waters.

Do Black German Shepherds love water?

Of course, Black German Shepherd loves water, swimming, and any other water game, the same as Sable, Bicolor, or any other German Shepherd. 

There is no difference between these German Shepherds, and no matter which type you have, you should carefully introduce your German Shepherd puppy to the water.

Why do German Shepherds love water?

German Shepherds love water for the same reasons as we do, it relaxes us, is healthy for our body, it’s fun, and they can explore the whole new world near the water.

If you bathe your German Shepherd inside the house, he will probably enjoy less than, for example, running near the river during a summer day.

This is maybe one of the most important reasons why German Shepherd loves so much water. Outside, near the water, they can explore the whole new world, the world which they can’t find anywhere else. 

That’s why they are so excited when they are outside near the lake, river, or sea. They love to explore new stuff.

Why do German Shepherds hate water?

The main reason why your German Shepherd hates water is because of the lack of exposure or some trauma.

Unlike their wolf ancestors, domestic dogs don’t need to swim to survive or to escape from some dangerous predator. During the years, they moved away from the water, and one of the reasons why German Shepherds hate or are afraid of water is because they think water poses a danger.

And this is true, if you are not careful when you are in the water, water can be deadly for you. That’s why is important to introduce water to your German Shepherd puppy as soon as possible, easily, without rushing.

What about bathing? Why do my German Shepherds hate bathing? Like cats, some GSDs don’t love to wet their fur against their will, and one of the main reasons why they don’t like bathing is because they lose their body smell.

We highlight the 5 main reasons why German Shepherd doesn’t like too much bathing:

  • They hate the noise
  • It’s unfamiliar to them
  • They don't like being wet
  • They don’t like not being in control
  • You find bath time stressful

Did you know that only one negative experience during the bathing can traumatize your German Shepherd dog, and make him start hating bathing?

Be careful while you bathe your German Shepherd dog, and be patient. Use only trusted shampoos, and be careful in which areas you apply shampoo.

How to get my German Shepherd to like water?

If your German Shepherd doesn’t like water, making him like water isn’t a simple process and requires a lot of time and patience.

Before you start training your German Shepherd to like water, have one thing in mind, be gentle

Here is how you can make your German Shepherd like water more:

  1. Try to make every time bath time fun and memorable
  2. Start with a kiddie pool
  3. Be in the water with your German Shepherd
  4. Invite a water-loving friend

Try to make every time bath time fun and memorable.

If your German Shepherd doesn’t like too much water, try to make every bathing memorable and fun. Bring his favorite toys, some delicious treats, and don’t be so serious. Be fun and interesting to your dog!

Do German Shepherd loves  water? GSD Colony

Start with a kiddie pool.

When your German Shepherd doesn’t like water too much, taking him on the beach near the lake or sea maybe isn’t the best idea. As we mention before, start small, and once your German Shepherd dog becomes comfortable with the kiddie pool, you can move to the next thing. 

Be in the water with your German Shepherd.

When things look too scary, every one of us wants someone to stand near us. This step can be crucial. If your German Shepherd doesn't like water, or even worse, he is too scared, be near him. Show him that water isn’t scary at all!

Invite a water-loving friend.

In some cases, your German Shepherd can realize that water isn’t scary when he sees other dogs in the water. You can try to take your GSD with your friends, which are also dog owners, near some river and together enjoy water games. But remember, safety comes first. Always bring with you muzzles, leash, collar, and life safety jacket.

Do German Shepherds like to play in the water?

The simple answer is yes! German Shepherds love to play in the water, and for some German Shepherds, this can be a favorite place to play!

It’s hard to choose which place is their favorite when it comes time for water games. We believe that they enjoy a little bit more when they are playing in the river, sea, or lake because they are in nature and can explore more.

Can German Shepherd dog dive?

Yes, a German Shepherd dog can dive underwater. Some well-trained German Shepherd can dive to a depth of 15 feet (4.5 meters).

We don’t recommend you to try this with your German Shepherd, because he can be seriously injured.

Final words.

If you have treated your German Shepherd dog nicely, we are almost 100% sure that he will love water and water games.

Remember, when you have a dog, trust is everything. If your German Shepherd doesn’t love water for some reason, be gentle, start nice and slowly. 

Once you build a strong relationship with your German Shepherd and prove to him that water isn’t something scary, it will almost impossible to bring him out of the water!

Back to blog