Something that many German Shepherd owners will question at some point is how to get their German shepherd to calm down. German Shepherds can be a bit more energetic than other dogs and calming them down can be challenging at times. This post will give you ways to keep your German Shepherd’s hyperactivity to a minimum.

So, how to calm your German Shepherd down? The most effective way to get a German Shepherd to be generally calmer is to give it lots of exercise. Other methods include giving it lots of training, ignoring it when it gets hyper, calming chews and aromatherapy. 

There are actually a lot of things that you can do to calm your dog down and they work for different reasons. The most effective way to calm your German Shepherd down will be to apply a combination of them.

How To Calm Your German Shepherd Down

There are a number of ways that you can get your German Shepherd to calm down that I will mention below. You’ll likely find that the best approach is to combine multiple of them together and to do them concurrently.

Exercise

German Shepherds were bred to do energy-intensive tasks for hours daily. With that being the case, it’s not surprising that they need a lot of exercise and that when they’re not getting much they get hyper.

If your German Shepherd is not currently getting much exercise then giving it lots more is going to be your best option. Also, don’t underestimate just how much exercise they can need. If you can give your German Shepherd around an hour of exercise a day then that would be ideal.

A good way to give your German Shepherd a lot of exercise is to play fetch with it.

I’ve written about how to teach your German Shepherd to play fetch in the past here.

The benefit of playing fetch with your German Shepherd is that it’s a very efficient way to wear it out without wearing yourself out. If you were to try to exercise your German Shepherd by running with it then you’ll often find that you’ll get tired long before your German Shepherd but fetch can mitigate that problem which is why it’s a very good way to exercise your German Shepherd.

Another option you have is to walk your German Shepherd with other dogs. This is also an efficient way to get your German Shepherd worn out since dogs will often play with each other and they will expend a lot of energy in doing so. This means that you’ll be able to give your German Shepherd lots of exercise this way as well without wearing yourself out.

If you don’t have enough time to give your German Shepherd exercise then one option for you would be to use a dog walker. By doing that you’ll be able to give your German Shepherd the exercise that it needs while being able to free up some time for yourself.

Give it training

Another way to get your dog to calm down is to give it lots of training. This will help in a number of ways. By training it you’ll be able to tell it to stop, when it’s acting hyper, and it will listen to you. You will be able to expend some of its mental energy in the training process itself which will help to wear your German Shepherd out. You’ll also be able to teach it to naturally wait for your command before it does things such as running out the door.

There are a number of things that you can teach your German Shepherd to do but I’ll mention some of the key ones below.

The first thing that you’ll want to teach your German Shepherd is to “stay”. This is beneficial since you’ll be able to get it to stop misbehaving more easily. You’ll also have an easier time socializing and when you’re at the vet’s since you’ll be able to get it to stay still more easily. I have written about how to teach your German Shepherd to stay before here

Once you’ve taught your German Shepherd to “stay” a good way to reinforce the training regularly and to keep it used to listening to your command is to make it wait for its food when you feed it until you say that it can have it.

The next thing that you’ll want to teach it is to “come”. You’ll find it much easier to teach this after you’ve already taught your German Shepherd “stay”. Teaching it “come” is beneficial since you’ll be able to get it to come to you when it’s misbehaving. I have written about how to teach this to your German Shepherd here.

Another thing that you’ll want to teach it is not to run away in certain situations such as when it’s off the leash or when the front door opens. Doing this will help to keep your German Shepherd safer since a common way for German Shepher to get injured is when they bolt out the front door. I’ve written about how to do this in the past here.

Ignore it when it gets hyper

Often, when your German Shepherd gets hyper, it will do it because it wants to get attention from you. It’s important not to teach it that acting hyper will result in attention from you even if it’s bad attention.

To make sure this doesn’t happen you can try ignoring your German Shepherd when it’s looking for attention from you such as when it starts jumping around when you walk through the door. It’s best to ignore it completely and to give it attention when it calms down instead.

Try a calming chew

There are chews that you can buy that are designed to calm your German Shepherd down when it chews on them. If you’re really having trouble getting your German Shepherd to calm down then you might want to consider getting some.

If you do then it’s important not to teach it that misbehaving gets it treats so you should try to give it the chews before it starts to misbehave or after so that you don’t cause it to misbehave more.

Related post: How to tell if your German Shepherd loves you

Things To Consider

When you’re trying to get your German Shepherd to calm down there are some things that you should consider that I’ll mention below.

Age

Even though exercise is often the main factor affecting its behavior, age is something that you should also bear in mind. If your German Shepherd is still a puppy then it will likely start to calm down a little bit as it gets older. This is a good time to begin training your German Shepherd so that it’s easier to manage as an adult.

German Shepherds are designed to be active

It’s also important to remember that German Shepherds are designed to be very active. So, don’t get frustrated when your German Shepherd is energetic since it’s in its nature to be that way.

Crate training

If your German Shepherd’s behavior is causing a lot of problems for you then you might want to consider crate training. It can be a bit controversial but many people agree that if you train your German Shepherd to make use of its crate in the right way it will not see it as a punishment and will see it as its own little safe area instead. The benefit of crate training is that you’ll be able to get it to stay in its crate when you think it might start causing you problems.

Behaviorist

If you still can’t get your German Shepherd to calm down then you’ll likely be well served by seeking the help of a certified animal behaviorist. By doing that they will be able to give you personally tailored advice on how to deal with your specific German Shepherd.

You can look at the book Training Your German Shepherd on Amazon to get more tips on how you can train your GSD.

Related Questions

Why does my German Shepherd destroy everything? There are a number of reasons that this could be the case. Your German Shepherd might be teething, be bored, have separation anxiety, have fear or it might be in its nature to be on the more destructive side. I have written how to stop it in the past here.

Why is my German Shepherd out of control? The main reason that your German Shepherd is out of control will likely be due to a lack of exercise and a lack of training. The first step that you’ll want to do is to give it lots and lots of exercise, then you’ll want to give it lots of training. If that’s not enough then you should seek the help of a dog behaviorist.

Most Recommended For German Shepherds

Best German Shepherd Training Program

Our favorite: The Dunbar Academy Training Program. If you want a happy and obedient dog, this is one of the best online dog training programs available right now.

Best German Shepherd Guide

Our favorite: The German Shepherd Handbook - Shows you all you need to know to keep your GSD happy, healthy and well-behaved.

Best German Shepherd Treats

Our favorites: N-Bone Puppy Teething Ring - Great for German Shepherd puppies. American Journey Dog Treats - Great for adult German Shepherds.

Author

Pin It