Like all dogs, German Shepherds too need an optimum amount of water daily to stay nourished, cleansed, hydrated, not to fall sick, and grow healthily.
They are, however, quite messy drinkers, so it can be really hard sometimes to know how much water they actually drink in a day!
Do you know- Dogs’ bodies are made up of 80% of water!
That adds 1 more basic responsibility to your schedule: To ensure that your German Shepherd drinks adequate water. It is extremely important as it contributes to your German Shepherd’s overall well-being and health.
Many German Shepherd owners leave water out for them in a water bowl all the time with the thought that they will drink as much, or as little, as they need. But, have you ever wondered about how much water does your German Shepherd really needs to drink?
So, let’s take a dip into a variety of questions to answer all your concerns and doubts about ‘German Shepherds and them drinking water’!
How much water do German Shepherds need?
Generally, the water requirements of a healthy and normal dog vary from 0.5 oz. – 1 oz. of water on a daily basis, per pound of bodyweight.
Conversion Tip- That’s 0.3 litres for those of you on the metric system!
Going by that logic, an 80-90 pounds of German Shepherd needs 40 to 90 ounces of water daily.
Another Tip- To maintain their good health as adult dogs, that’s equal to 1.5 litres – 2.5 litres of water daily!
Also, an 8-week German Shepherd puppy might require 20 ounces of water daily.
Why does your German Shepherd drink a lot of water?
This is because they are active and large dogs, so, their water consumption is also more due to the panting and saliva loss that happens due to their size.
However, if you notice that even without significant activities your German Shepherd is drinking more than 4 litres, he/she might have illnesses such as dehydration. Consult the vet ASAP if such a situation occurs.
What are the benefits of giving adequate water to your German Shepherd?
- The main benefit of giving enough water to your German Shepherd is to provide him/her proper hydration, which is one of the prime reasons aspects of maintaining his/her good health
- It helps to cool down your German Shepherd’s body while regulating his/her temperature
- Helps him/her digest dog food/canned food and absorb nutrients properly
Other benefits of giving adequate water to your German Shepherd are-
- Carrying nutrients into and out of your German Shepherd’s body
- Makes your German Shepherd move smoothly by ensuring proper joint lubrication
- Helps to flush away the body waste of your German Shepherd through urination
- Protects vital organs of your German Shepherd from suffering a water deficiency
What are the factors to consider when adjusting the amount of water for your German Shepherd’s intake?
- Weather and Climate
- Health Issues
- Age and Weight
Now, let’s discuss each one in detail.
- Weather and Climate- If the weather and climate are really hot, it can affect your German Shepherd adversely and your four-legged friend may be prone to diseases like sunburn or heat stroke. Also, their paws will get burnt if they stay outside in hot weather for a long period of time. Therefore, your German Shepherd will drink lots of water to make up for their increased thirst due to heat.
- Diet- The dog food given to your German Shepherd will determine the appropriate water intake for him.
- Dry Dog Food and Salty Food will result in excessive thirst
- Wet Food and Foods rich in water content will help your German Shepherd stay hydrated
- Activity- Simple and Straightforward Rule of Thumb- More activities, more water requirements. Fewer activities, less water consumption.
- Health Issues- Health conditions such as polydipsia, kidney failure, and diabetes mellitus may cause an increase in water intake by your German Shepherd.
- Age and Weight- Old age German Shepherds just like the other large dogs, tend to consume more amount of water as compared to younger or lighter German Shepherds.
How to know if your German Shepherd is suffering from Dehydration?
If your German Shepherd is suffering from Dehydration, he/she will show the following signs:
- Tired behavior
- Dry mouth and gums
- Loss of appetite
Ways to determine your German Shepherd’s dehydration are:
- Pinch their skin: Pinch their skin in the neck and wait to see how it moves.
- HYDRATED- If the skin snaps back to its original form right away
- DEHYDRATED- If the skin is wrinkled or it fails to snap back
- Check their gums: Open your German Shepherd’s mouth and run your fingers over their gums.
- HYDRATED- If your German Shepherd’s gums are wet
- DEHYDRATED- If your German Shepherd’s are sticky and dry
Additional Tip: Senior or Pregnant German Shepherds, or those German Shepherds who are not provided with an adequate supply of water, will also drink additional amounts water.
How to make German Shepherds drink more water?
- Mix flavours in your German Shepherd’s water
- Mix broth (bone broth, low sodium broth) along with your German Shepherd’s food and water
- Reward or give a treat to your German Shepherd for drinking water
- Switch to wet food or raw food
What are the things to look out for in a Water Fountain for your German Shepherd?
- Big enough capacity for your German Shepherd or multiple pets (if you have any)
- Easy access and Replaceable Water Filters
- For the better overall health of your dog – BPA Plastic free
- If you plan to store the water fountain in warmer conditions, make sure it is UV Resistant
- Indoor-outdoor use specified (look for an outdoor water fountain if you are concerned about the noise of the motor)
What to do when your German Shepherd drinks too much water?
- If your German Shepherd drinks too much water for a long period of time, monitor their water intake
- Consult your vet ASAP as your German Shepherd may be suffering from any underlying cause
Do you know?
When your German Shepherd drinks too much water, it is a medical condition referred to as Polydipsia, which is caused by diseases that cause increased thirst levels in your dog’s body such as Dehydration, Bladder Infection, etc.
Apart from the above listings, some more points to hover over are:
- Do not forget to observe how much water your German Shepherd is drinking, to avoid any serious problems that might arise
- Ensure that the drinking water for your German Shepherd is plentiful and they are provided with clean water or filtered water, as it is very important for his/her overall health
- Be knowledgeable about the requirements of your German Shepherd
- Ensure that your home, trail or field has a constant supply of fresh water so that your active German Shepherd drinks enough water
- Train your German Shepherd to drink water out of a water bottle and make drinking water a fun activity for them
Follow the above-mentioned simple steps to keep your four-legged companion hydrated this summer as their overall health and happiness depends on it!