When Do German Shepherd Ears Stand Up? Here’s What You Should Know
The large erect ears make every German Shepherd remarkably unique. It is a physical trademark that makes them quite noticeable among all the other large breeds. Whether you own a German Shepherd or not, those ears could be one of the distinct traits you’ll first see.
But if you are reading this article right at this very moment, you probably have got a German Shepherd of your own and you’re wondering when those ears really stand up.
How long should you wait before their ears stand up? Should you worry too soon or should you do something about right away? Don’t worry. We’ve got you covered.
Here's What You Should Know
What Age Should a German Shepherd Ears Stand Up?
A German Shepherd’s growth and development goes through several life stages of maturity where each phase uncovers a new behavior and physical trait. If you have lived with GSDs for quite a long time, you must have already discovered which stage of your German Shepherd’s life the ears become beautifully upright.
However, there’s a little bit of a struggle if you’re a first-time GSD owner. Every phase is a surprise. But when it comes to your puppy’s ears, you will notice the changes right after they are finished teething. You can expect their ears to be pointy and straight between 4 to 7 months of age or known as the Juvenile stage.
It still varies from dog to dog, though. Some might develop them earlier while the others might do a little later. The changes and outcome depend on the nutrition your dog received right from the very beginning until its earliest days.
If you’ve had fed him the best dog food for German Shepherd dogs or some healthy home cooked meals suitable for its health and age, your German Shepherd will likely to have large erect ears at the perfect time.
Should I Be Worried About Floppy Ears?
It’s pretty normal to worry when those ears don’t stand up straight at the expected age or time. Some owners even panic and resolve their issues on their own. But should you really worry about those floppy ears? Well, not too soon.
There are factors you have to consider and questions you need to ask yourself first before you assume a potential problem with your German Shepherd. It’s rational to provide a proper evaluation regarding your dog’s health, diet, age, and genes.
1. How old is your German Shepherd?
You’ve got to be reasonable. You shouldn’t be panicking too soon when your puppy is still in its early months. A lot of changes can occur during the first 4 or 5 months and even during its first few weeks. So, you need to be very patient.
There are times when their ears would go up and down during 6 or 7 months old. The other ear might go upright while the other one is down. Do know that every puppy has its own maturity level or growth development.
2. What is your puppy’s diet?
Your puppy’s diet greatly affects your puppy’s growth and development. If you know you’re feeding him properly, your puppy will likely to have a stronger and better health. As you know, the cartilage of a puppy is not as strong as it seems. The ears might be too big and heavy for the cartilage. Hence, the ears might go up and down.
Proper nutrition helps your German Shepherd acquire better health and thus, a stronger cartilage. So, it depends on the diet you’re providing, what kind of food, and how much you feed your German Shepherd puppy. It will not only develop large erect ears, but also an excellent well-being all throughout his life.
3. Have you checked your puppy’s parents?
There’s another factor you have to consider why those ears seem to be floppy – your puppy’s parents. Although your German Shepherd may display the common behavioral and physical traits, it may still develop some differences that may have passed on from its parents.
Therefore, those floppy ears may not really be an issue from an improper diet or deficiency in nutrition, but from a genetic material of the parents’ breed. There might be differences in the development if the German Shepherd lines have crossed or the parents are not purebred.
4. Has your German Shepherd been sick before?
Was there a time when your German Shepherd puppy got sick? Perhaps an ear infection, allergies, or other serious health condition that might have affected its growth.
As you know, when puppies get sick, they often lose their appetite. They won’t be able to comply with the ideal diet and nutrition. If this happens, health issues may arise thus could affect the proper development of the ears and the body as well.
What Can I Do To Make My German Shepherd Ears Stand Up?
What if your German Shepherd puppy reaches 8 months and the ears still don’t stand up? That could be a problem. This is the time or age when German Shepherd ears are fully developed and become permanent. So if the ears are still floppy at this time, there is a huge possibility that they won’t stand up anymore.
Is there anything you can do to prevent this? Yes, there is. Here’s what you can do.
1. Supply the proper nutrition.
The best dog food for German Shepherd puppies includes all the essential nutrients such as vitamins, fatty acids, and minerals. Protein should also be abundant in every food as it is the most important part of a puppy’s diet. This should take place in the earliest months of your puppy. If you’re consistent with the proper diet, your puppy will definitely develop those ears perfectly in the long run.
2. Keep those ears healthy.
Sometimes, you can’t just resist playing with your puppy’s ears. However, don’t. Do not fold, bend, or rub those soft ears. But, of course, they should still be regularly groomed to keep those ears healthy and free from infection. Always remember to use the right ear cleaner when grooming your puppy’s ears.
3. Consider taping.
Taping is one of the most common solutions in fixing those floppy ears. However, this should be done with precaution. Otherwise, it will cause irritation or stress to your puppy’s ears and you might cause more harm than help those beautiful ears stand up.
4. Take your puppy to the vet.
If you’re uncertain of what to do prior or after the ear problems, the best thing to do is consult your vet.
There are a lot of reasons why a German Shepherd’s ears do not stand up at the time you expect them to. However, there are some ways that you can try and factors you have to consider first before you let yourself worry about your puppy’s ears. But despite your efforts or you’re still worried sick, never ever resolve things on your own. Always seek help from your vet.
We encourage you to be genuinely interested in your puppy’s ears as they grow. This will help you settle the issues and make things right as early as possible.