Dog News

Do German Shepherds Smell? Why & How to Make Them Smell Better

by Life With Dogs

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Your furry friend jumps up on the couch to cuddle with you, and suddenly you get a whiff of something that smells like death. What could that be?

Your friend looks at you innocently, and you can’t help but wonder what has suddenly changed that is making your German Shepherd smell so nasty? It can be disruptive and an embarrassment when you have guests visiting. It can also be uncomfortable for your dog, as there are underlying reasons for the odor that needs to be addressed.

Well, many reasons could be causing this odor, and you must address it sooner rather than later. You could go online and search for the reason or, better yet, read this article.

Let us look at the different causes for the smell and what you can do to make sure your furry friend smells fabulous!

What is Dog Body Odour?

Let’s break it down. Dog body odor is caused by the bacteria and yeast that begin to break down surface oils on your dog’s skin. This odor can be transferred to your bed, furniture, carpet, and even car. This causes that smell and can become more severe if your dog is wet.

German Shepherds are not notoriously known to be smellier than other breeds of dogs but breeds that have more sebaceous glands may smell more. German Shepherds are big and therefore could smell more than smaller dogs.

Why Does My German shepherd Smell Bad?

There are several reasons a German shepherd can smell badly. For example, it could be due to bad breath caused by diseased teeth and gums, ear infections, and excessive flatulence are just a few causes.

To nip the problem in the bud, you need to investigate and determine the cause of the smell. As always, consulting your veterinarian is a good idea to determine if any medical treatments are required.

As per, the following are some common reasons for your German Shepherd not smelling so nice:

  • It has dental issues
  • Your dog has been in the water
  • It has been rolling in something that smells bad
  • It has a yeast infection
  • It has a skin infection
  • It is a diet issue if they have excessive flatulence
  • There is a kidney failure that needs medical treatment

How to Identify the Problem?

Since so many problems can cause your dog to smell bad, how can you identify the underlying cause?

It may be useful to use the process of elimination to pinpoint the exact cause of the smell. For example, if you are not sure if your dog has bad breath, you can first inspect its oral cavity. Look for any signs of tooth decay and gum disease. If all seems clear, investigate your dog’s coat and skin to see if you see signs of any skin infection. Look out for rashes, swelling, redness, and other common symptoms. (More on that below.)

However, if there are no obvious signs and your dog continues to smell even after a bath, we suggest that you take him to the vet.

Why Does My German shepherd Smell So Bad Suddenly?

Dog smells can be intense sometimes and come and go. But if you suddenly notice your dog’s smell is very different than normal, then this is something you should pay attention to.

In case the smell comes up suddenly and is very intense, you should answer the following questions:

  • Has your dog rolled around in manure or feces?
  • Has your dog brought in a dead animal or rodent?
  • Has your dog eaten something that could be causing a bad smell from its mouth?
  • Is your dog suffering from severe flatulence caused by a substandard diet?

All of the above reasons can be dealt with at home without a visit to the veterinarian. So, it’s best always to check these things before panicking and running for help.

German Shepherds are curious and always like to explore the outdoors. Often, they may come across other dead animals or dead birds that they may bring inside the house. Dogs are naturally inclined to hunt prey, so they may also be hunting in your backyard.

It’s always a good idea to make sure your backyard and surroundings are free from small animals that could fall prey to your dog.

How Often Should I Bathe my German shepherd?

Bathing is an important part of keeping a pet. Your German shepherd should be bathed regularly to make sure it is clean and not smelling.

The number of times you bathe your German shepherd will depend upon how often it gets dirty. Usually, German Shepherds need to be bathed once every 3-4 months. But if they are playing around outside and get dirty, then they would need to be bathed more often. It is left up to your best judgment.

Grooming your German Shepherd regularly is essential as they have two coats of hair and a lot of sebaceous glands which means they can get smelly more quickly than other dogs. However, if you bathe your German shepherd too much, it will rob their coats of oils the glands produce oils naturally that keep these coats nice and shiny.

Therefore, find the right balance. We recommend 3 – 4 months per month depending on your dog’s lifestyle.

In the flea season and summer months, it is a good idea to bathe your German shepherd once every two months. The flea season is a good time to ramp up hygiene as you do not want your pet to fall prey to those annoying blood-sucking critters.

Things to keep in mind when bathing your German shepherd:

  • Keep the water lukewarm and not very hot
  • Start lathering your pet from the neck and work towards the tail
  • Put shampoo on a washcloth and lather your German Shepherds head, making sure not to get it into their eyes.
  • Use curricular motions that will make sure that the shampoo will reach the undercoat
  • You can also use long massage strokes that your pet will enjoy
  • Lastly, wash out all of the soap, making sure that no shampoo is left in their coat
  • Use a high-velocity dryer that is not too hot to dry them

If you find yourself bathing your dog very often, this may be a sign that there is something wrong with your German shepherd.

How to Make My German Shepherd Smell Better?

What can you do to make sure your dog smells great? So besides bathing your dog, here are some tips to make sure your dog and home smell great!

  • Once you have bathed your dog, also wash all of your other dog items like bedding, and disinfect carpets, furniture, blankets, and car seats.
  • You can use no-rinse dog shampoo to make sure your dog smells great without stripping them of essential oils.
  • Make sure to brush and clean your German shepherd’s mouth thoroughly and often. You can even buy dental pads between brushing that will help to ensure your dog has fresh breath.
  • Dry your dog if it gets wet. Make sure that your dog does not get wet, but if it does, dry it immediately to prevent a smelly dog.
  • Brush your dog weekly. Brushing your dog will make sure their coat is nice and shiny and remove and debris from their coat.
  • To clean your dog’s paws, face, and other sensitive areas, use dog wipes that are deodorizing. These are helpful to keep on hand whenever your dog goes out to play and gets into things that can cause bad smells.

Why does my German Shepherd Smell like Yeast?

You should not ignore this one smell! If your dog smells like yeast and keeps pawing at its ear, this could be a sign of an ear infection. If you catch your furry friend shaking their head and they seem to be in pain, it can be a definite sign that there is a medical issue that needs to be dealt with.

German Shepherds get ear infections due to the build-up of yeast and bacteria. This can cause a foul smell coming from the ear of the dog that will smell like yeast. The ear is an ideal place for yeast and bacteria to grow, as it is damp and dark.

Some dogs are more prone to yeast infections than others.

Here is why:

  • Allergies
  • Excessive hair in the ears
  • Excessive ear cleaning
  • Water entering the ear
  • Long-term antibiotic use
  • Long floppy ears
  • Weakened immune system

Do Dogs Smell When They are Dying?

Yes, dogs do emit a specific kind of smell when they are dying. The smell is something unique and not similar to the kinds of smells we have described above.

Pet owners have related that their pets, before dying, sometimes emit a smell. Some pet owners notice it, and others do not. The smell is not unpleasant, just different from other smells.

Dogs who are suffering from cancer may start to emit a smell when their organs start to rot and disintegrate.

The following are some reasons for this specific smell before death:

  • Your dog’s metabolism may change during its last days, and this could cause the smell
  • If your dog starts eating and drinking less, the smell could be caused by that
  • Some dogs suffer from vomiting and diarrhea before dying, and this could also cause the smell

Products You Can Use to Make Your German shepherd Smell Better

Are there products you can buy to make sure your dog smells better? There sure are!

Here are a few household products you can use to make sure your dog’s smell is fresher than flowers:

  • Portable Paw Washer washes paws fast and easy
  • Chewable treats for better dog breath provides vitamins for better breath
  • Lavender Oil deodorizing spray will help keep the bad smells away
  • Natural dog shampoos help to keep coats smelling fresh naturally
  • Anal gland supplements will help to prevent any infections and bad anal smell
  • Natural dog cologne is a good idea to use, especially when you have guests visiting

There Are Ways to Make Sure your German shepherd Smells Great

Identifying what is causing the foul odor and dealing with it is the first step to making sure your German shepherd smells great. Underlying health problems can cause bad smells and so dealing with them should be your priority.

Good hygiene, bathing, and keeping your home clean and deodorized are all great ways to keep bad smells at bay. You should take care to make sure your furry friend does not get into areas of your home where they could roll around in trash or garbage that can cause bad smells.  

With so many great products out there, that can help you keep your German shepherd smelling like roses, you should have no problem keeping a bad scent-free pet!