If you are thinking of getting a German Shepherd you may have wondered do German Shepherds drink a lot of water?
This article will answer that question, explain how much water your GSD should be drinking on a daily basis, and things that could cause your German Shepherd to drink more water than normal.
So, Do German Shepherds Drink a lot of Water?
Yes, German Shepherds are large dogs and as such will drink more water than a smaller dog. In addition, German Shepherds are very active so they will need more water to keep hydrated than more sedentary dogs.
How Much Water Should A German Shepherd Drink Daily?
Normally, dogs should drink an ounce of water for every pound they weigh on a daily basis, but I found that many German Shepherds drink a little more than one ounce per pound.
My German Shepherd is 72 pounds, so that means she should be consuming around 72 ounces of water daily.
However, there are various conditions that could cause your German Shepherd to need to drink more than this on a regular basis.
Things that Could Cause your German Shepherd to Drink More Water
There are a lot of things that could cause your German Shepherd to drink more water than you would expect. If it seems like your dog is drinking excessively, look to see if any of the below conditions are present that would increase their need for water.
Weather and climate are definitely a factor in increasing your dog’s thirst. When it is hot outside, your GSD will drink more as a way of cooling themselves down.
Conversely, colder air tends to be drier, and the dry air can make your dog dehydrated, thus you may find your pup drinking more in the wintertime as well.
Another reason your German Shepherd will drink a lot of water is because they have been physically active. Just like humans get thirsty when exercising, so do dogs. So, if your GSD just finished running around, expect them to be thirstier than normal.
There are a lot of medications that have the side effect of causing thirst in dogs. When my girl was put on antibiotics and an anti-inflammatory, the vet told me to expect her to need more water than normal.
If your dog was just put on a new medication, that could be the cause of the extra drinking, but check with your vet to be certain.
Another reason a German Shepherd will drink more water is because they have some sort of illness. Conditions such as cancer, liver disease and diabetes require your dog to drink more water and their body tries to fight off the illness.
Also, as stated above, sometimes the medications they are on to help with the illness also increases their thirst.
What your dog eats directly affects how much they drink. Dogs that consume a dry kibble will usually need more to drink than a dog that is on a wet food diet.
Also, if you give your dog the occasional human food treat like peanut butter, bread, bacon, or fries you may find that they drink more after consuming these foods. Food that are dry, sticky, or salty will cause your dog to take some extra trips to the water bowl.
Age is another factor is to consider when looking at water consumption. Puppies are known for drinking quite a bit. This is normal though because as your GSD pup is growing their bodies need more water to support their developing system.
Older dogs can also drink more because elderly dogs are more prone to developing conditions that would cause thirst such as diabetes, various infections, liver or kidney disease among other illnesses.
If you have an older dog that has been drinking more than normal, make an appointment with the vet just to be sure nothing more serious than dehydration is going on.
German Shepherds can definitely drink more water than some other dog breeds. Heavier water consumption is normal for a large active breed like German Shepherds but there are also other factors that can cause your dog to drink more such as age, illness, medication and the weather.
Unless you have a young puppy, it is best to give your dog access to fresh water throughout the day so they don’t get dehydrated. An automatic water bowl is a great tool for providing fresh water all day long.
Of course, if you can’t seem to drill down as to why your dog is drinking so much, it never hurts to make an appointment with the vet just to be sure nothing concerning is going on with your pooch.