Bath Tips For Washing Your Dog

Is Fido looking filthy or smelling less-than-wonderful? If so, it’s probably time for a bath! Bathing your dog can be a difficult task, especially if your pooch is not fond of the grooming process. However, it’s up to you to maintain the health of his coat and skin by keeping him clean.

I’ve come up with this list of tips that should make this necessary chore easier on both of you! This list isn’t just meant for dogs that don’t like baths; it will come in handy for the new puppy owner or those of you who want to make bath time more pleasant and efficient!

Bath time Setup: Get the bathroom set up for the upcoming bath. Purchasing a rubber mat for the inside of the tub will not only prevent scratches to the enamel, but will keep your dog from slipping. Slipping can cause your dog to panic and make the bathing experience seem very scary. If your dog can keep his footing, he is more likely to remain calm. Lay out old towels or even a sheet on the floor of the tub. Dogs will shake off and the bathroom is bound to get a bit wet. This step should make for quicker cleanup. A removable showerhead with a sprayer makes the entire bating process much simpler!

Rapid Bath: This device is really handy and lets you shampoo and rinse your dog very quickly! It hooks up to your showerhead and contains a shampoo cartridge that automatically mixes into the spray of water. With just a press of the button you can then rinse your dog. A perk of this device is their selection of shampoo types – they range from whitening to hypoallergenic. You can buy Rapid Bath at

Sink Baths: If you have a small dog that you can bathe in the sink, consider cutting a rubber mat to fit the area in order to keep your dog feeling secure.

Booster Baths: If you’re the owner of a breed that will require frequent bathing, consider purchasing a booster bathtub. These allow you to bathe your dog while standing up and are much easier on your back! You can buy Booster Baths at

Gentle Cleansing: Choose a dog shampoo that is gentle to your pet’s skin. There are many “natural” shampoos out there that will make your pet smell fresh and clean. Do not use shampoo for humans as it can harm your dog’s skin.

Keep Calm: Keep your tone calm and praise your dog for good behavior. If you become angry at your dog during a bath, he’s going to associate that with the bath itself. This will only make the next bath more trying on both of you. You can even have some treats on hand to reward him. I suggest putting them in a zip lock to keep them dry!

Hot or Cold: Before putting your dog in the tub, check the temperature of the water. Dogs do NOT like cold baths (do you?!). The water should not be hot, but warm.

Avoid The Ears: You can place cotton balls inside your dog’s ear to prevent water from entering the ear canal. Avoiding the face entirely is another way to keep this from happening. I recommend using a damp washcloth to cleanse around your dog’s mouth, eyes and ears.

Help Him Adjust: Once your pup is in the tub, pour or gently spray water on his feet to get him used to the sensation. Once he adjusts, you can move on to the rest of the coat.

Shampooing: Avoid pouring shampoo directly onto the coat because the sudden sensation can be startling to some dogs. Rub some between your hands and then apply the lather.

Rinsing: It is very important to make sure that your dog is well rinsed of the shampoo as remnants can cause tangling and attract dust and dirt. It may take a while, but the water should run clear once this process is finished.

Blow Dryers: If a towel isn’t going to do the trick and you feel like you have to use a dryer, keep it on the lowest setting. A good distance should be kept from your dog’s skin to avoid burns.

Towel Drying: Your dog is going to shake off – it’s a natural response that occurs when they get wet. Make sure you don’t get mad at your dog for this behavior. If you have a longhaired breed, avoid rubbing the coat (use a blotting motion once you wrap your dog up) as it can cause tangles.


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