German Shepherds information

Why Do German Shepherds Rub Themselves? Find Out

Sponsored Links

Why do German Shepherds Rub themselves? If you’re looking for the answer to the above question, then this article has the answers to it all. Just read it.

German Shepherds are the cutest dogs in the world. This is one reason why the German Shepherd is the fifth most popular dog in the United States to have as a pet right now.

But it’s not easy to take care of a German Shepherd.

Because of how they are built, it is harder for them to take care of themselves, and they often need help from you to stay clean and healthy.

When they get older and reach puberty, German Shepherds sometimes rub themselves.

Even though this is a common reason for this behavior, it’s not the only reason a German Shepherd might rub themselves.

In this article, we explain the main reasons why your German Shepherd might act this way and what you can do to stop it.

Why Do German Shepherds Rub Themselves?

Why do German Shepherds Rub themselves

Why do German Shepherds rub themselves?

German Shepherds rub themselves for a number of reasons.

One of the most obvious reasons is that the dog is becoming mature and ready to mate.

If a male German Shepherd rubs against different surfaces in your house or yard, they may be marking their territory with their scent.

Another common reason is that German Shepherds can have trouble keeping themselves clean in some places, like around their tails.

See also  12 Easy Ways to Stop German Shepherd Puppy From Biting

A German Shepherd may also start rubbing themselves if they have an insect bite, cut, or infection in that area.

Learn About German Shepherd Care Needs

German Shepherds are built in a way that makes this especially true.

These dogs have been bred to have normal, pointed faces and long legs, and their bodies are thick and some slim as well.

Because of this, they might need help cleaning some parts of themselves from their owners.

This is one reason why your German Shepherd might be rubbing against itself.

If you see this, it could mean that your German Shepherd needs help with some basic hygiene tasks.

Top Reasons Why German Shepherds Rub Themselves: An Overview


Why do German Shepherds rub themselves?

Talk to your dog’s vet if you notice that he or she is rubbing too much in one spot.

You don’t want that area to get irritated and infected, and your vet might be able to give your dog something to make him feel better and stop him from rubbing.

See also  How To Clean German Shepherd Ears

Begining of puberty

One reason a German Shepherd might be rubbing himself is because he or she is growing up.

The breeder at Carolina dog German Shepherd mix says that neutering or spaying your German Shepherd is a good idea for his or her health and to make him or her live longer.

It can also help stop “humping” or other kinds of territorial behavior.

Turf marking

In the same way that hormones can cause territorial aggression and rubbing, the start of puberty in a dog can also cause problems like territorial aggression and rubbing.

Again, spaying or neutering your German Shepherd may help to stop these bad habits and keep your dog calm.

The breeder at Redbone Coonhound German Shepherd mix says that German Shepherds have glands in their anuses that make a smelly substance that can be used to mark their territory.

See also  German Shepherd Toys To Keep Them Happy And Busy

Taking the time to learn how to empty your dog’s anal gland sacs (called “expressing” them) or having a groomer do it for you can sometimes stop this type of behavior.

Getting the anal sacs out is also a very important part of being clean.

Food allergies

Food allergies are a surprising reason why your German Shepherd might rub himself or herself.

German Shepherds are known to have sensitive stomachs, as a research at the University of Oxford says.

The cause could be anything from inflammation to an infection to problems with their anatomy.

When a dog has food allergies, it can have all of the usual stomach problems, such as diarrhea, constipation, or vomiting. And German Shepherds are already known to have a lot of gas.

But dog owners are often surprised to learn that itchy skin in dogs is often caused by food allergies.

So, if your German Shepherd is rubbing itself and nothing else you’ve tried has worked, you might want to try changing its food and see if that helps.

A professional dog vet says that atopy is a skin irritation caused by a food allergy. This is something that many German Shepherds have trouble with.

The itching is most likely to happen on your dog’s face, ears, belly, and paw pads, which are all places where the skin folds or has more moisture.

See also  Facts About Black German Shepherds

If your dog keeps rubbing or licking these spots, it could be because he or she has a skin allergy.

Not every skin allergy is caused by a food allergy, but that’s at least a good place to start when trying to figure out what’s wrong and how to treat it.


The coats of German Shepherds are thin, short, and only have one layer, so they don’t offer much protection from the weather or from bugs.

It’s important to keep your German Shepherd’s flea and tick treatments up to date.

Mosquitoes, ants, flies, and other biting insects that fly or crawl can also bother German Shepherds.

When your German Shepherd rubs himself over and over in the same spot, it may be because he or she has been bitten or stung there and is trying to get rid of an itch or pain.

Demodex mites are another type of pest that is harder to find.

These tiny mites will give you dry, hairless sores that may or may not itch. Most of the time, the lesions begin on the face or feet.

See also  Do Professional Dog Trainers Use Training/Shock Collars?

To stop the mange from spreading, your dog needs to see a vet right away.

Skin infection

Central Texas Veterinary Hospital says that German Shepherds can have a number of problems with skin infections.

Lip fold pyoderma is an infection of the skin that often starts in the folds of the face, where there is enough moisture for yeast and bacteria to grow.

The same thing can cause both foot and ear infections, which may make your dog scratch at its ears or paw pads.

If the anal sacs are pushed together and get infected, your German Shepherd may scoot along the floor and rub their rear end.

German Shepherds that can’t clean themselves well may also get a urinary tract infection (UTI), which can be very painful, itchy, and uncomfortable.

Dogs often move around on the floor to try to make themselves feel better.

Efforts to clean themselves

Some German Shepherds can’t reach their private parts and clean them with their tongues like most other dogs do.

So this is one reason why your German Shepherd might keep pawing at or rubbing their private parts with their paws.

See also  German Shepherd Behavior Problems and Ways To stop It

If your German Shepherd has something stuck on them or their poop gets stuck and they can’t get it all out, they may rub themselves or drag their rear end along the ground.

Why Can’t German Shepherds Clean Themselves?

Some German Shepherds are among the dog breeds with long faces, according to AKC

A dog with a long muzzle will always have a harder time staying clean than a dog with a shorter muzzle. 

But the long muzzle type of German Shepherd isn’t the only one that has trouble cleaning itself.

Some German Shepherds that have short, thick necks, short legs, and barrel-shaped bodies also make it hard for them to clean or scratch different parts of their bodies.

A short German Shepherd won’t be able to reach around easily to do things like clean its back paws or hindquarters on its own.

They are not very flexible dogs to begin with, and the way they are built only makes things worse.

In fact, German Shepherds are so stiff and awkward in their bodies that they usually need artificial insemination to get pregnant, and then they have to have C-sections to give birth to their puppies.

Help Your German Shepherd Clean Themselves

Why do German Shepherds Rub themselves

German Shepherds look like neat and clean little dogs for sure.

But this is usually because their owner is working hard behind the scenes to help these dogs who can’t clean themselves because of how they are built.

See also  Miniature German Shepherd Dog Breed Info

The average German Shepherd will need your help on a regular basis with all of the following hygiene tasks:

  • Taking care of the ears.
  • Cleaning the wrinkles on the face.
  • Cleaning your teeth.
  • Cleaning the back end of the animal.
  • Getting the anal gland sacs out (emptying them).
  • Taking care of the paw pads.
  • Cleaning out the stomach.
  • The coat is brushed and cared for.

If you learn how to take care of your dog’s hygiene once a week or once a month, he or she will probably stop rubbing as much.

But if the rubbing keeps going on or gets worse, you should always take your German Shepherd to the vet.

The problem may need to be treated to be fixed.


Thanks for reading. So many people do ask, why do German Shepherds rub themselves? How do I stop German Shepherds from rubbing themselves.

Well, here is why Why do German Shepherds rub themselves? A German Shepherd may also start rubbing themselves if they have an insect bite, cut, or infection in that area.

Also, they can rub themselves due to beginning of puberty, self cleaning, etc.

Does your German Shepherd rub itself? Share your experience in the comment section below.

Sponsored Links

Leave a Reply

Back to top button