Sep 14 , 2022
Bathing your dogs is all fun until they hysterically run around, splashing water all over your floor. Also, consider yourself lucky if your dogs love bath time because not all pups love the scrubbing and washing.
There are plenty of reasons why dogs hate getting cleaned. They may have trauma due to past experience from getting scalded with hot water, getting stung by shampoo on the eyes, slipping on the floor, falling off the tub, or having water up the nose.
But don’t worry because you can ease out your furry buddy’s water anxiety through gentle bathing.
Bathing a dog 101
Bathing a dog needs to be given closer attention. This is because if you’re careless in bathing, your fur babies may end up having some infections. For example, if you don’t close the ears with a large cotton ball, the water may enter ear canals and may cause some ear infections with signs like constant discharge from the ears and shaking of head.
Frequency of bathing actually depends on the breed of your dogs. If they’re of a hairy type like the cocker spaniel, then the bathing is to be carried out once in six to eight weeks. If these breeds are bathed too frequently, the skin and coat loose the protective characters.
However, when the dog has defecated on the skin due to the frequent digestive upsets leading to diarrhea, You can bathe your dog more frequently to avoid the unpleasant smell.
Additionally, be more careful in using irritant soaps or human soaps. The soap materials used for humans are not suitable for dogs. Similarly, many human shampoo products have some ingredients that are not suitable in the proportions that are to be used with dogs. Hence, always try to use the shampoo products that are made mainly for dogs. Be more cautious in letting your dogs try out a new product.
To make sure your dogs have a good bath time, and you can keep your patience, gather all the bathing stuff in one place or at least closer to the water source. Dogs love water sprinklers, rivers, and oceans. Wherever you plan to bathe your dogs, have their leash, towel, shampoo and conditioner in the bath place.
Conditioner is helpful too to make combing easier later. Bathing should be a convenient activity for both the dog and the owner and not a burden.
A step-by-step guide to gently bathing your dog
1. Set up a stress-free bathing environment
Before you call your dogs, make sure the bathroom is already prepared with the necessary bathing supplies like shampoo, soap, and conditioner. Place these products within your arm’s reach to avoid hassle.
Placing a non-slip rubber mat will also prevent your dogs (and you!) from slipping in case they get too playful. You can also place their favorite toys in the tub or floor to keep them preoccupied.
The goal in this step is to make your dog see the bathroom as a common area in the house where he can sit or play comfortably, not a scare room.
2. Set a paw-fect bathing temperature
To prevent your dog from getting spooked by water, ensure the temperature is neither too hot nor too cold. Test the temperature with the tip of your elbow.
If your elbow feels warm, then the water temperature is good for your dog. If the water feels quite hot, then it’s too hot for your dog.
Remember that dogs have more sensitive touch receptors than humans.
3. Call your dog in a calm, enjoyable manner
Dogs can hear and empathize with human emotions. They have a strong frequency that can relate to your feelings and commands. Your dog doesn’t really memorize your commands in words, but they understand how your gestures dictate the orders, that’s why they follow naturally.
Before bathing your dogs, call them in a calm tone of voice.
You can also use healthy treats to invite them to the bathing area. If they resist, don’t force. Just simply cuddle with your pups first or do a gentle massage to lessen the nervousness. If you feel like your dogs are getting calmed, gently lift them and put them in the bathing area or tub.
Place one of your hand on the chest and the other on the hind legs. This will make them feel more relaxed since you’re holding the body. Then gently secure them with a leash. Do it slow or else your pups might panic.
4. Wet the coat gently
Gently wet the coat first by starting with the base of the skull, then down to the tip of the tail. Since the water temperature is good, this process won’t spook them.
Just make sure to pay close attention to the ears, eyes, and nose to avoid getting too wet, as these are sensitive areas that can get infected easily due to wrong bathing.
Since dog’s fur repels water, you may opt for a sponge to wet the hair as needed. This is less distracting and invasive than directly spraying or pouring the water on the head and body.
5. Apply fur products gently
Always use mild shampoo and conditioner on your dog’s fur. Never use human shampoo, soaps, or conditioner as this can cause irritation to their skin, causing them to fear bathing. Massage the products gently on your dog’s coat for better absorption and a bit of relaxation.
6. Dry them properly
If your dogs have no issue having their coat dried with a blow dryer, then you can use this tool after every bath. Just make sure that it is in the lowest heat setting.
But if your dogs get startled with loud noises, just dry them off using a lightweight, fast-absorbing towel. You can also finish the grooming process by adding dog cologne or powder for a baby-like smell.
A dog’s hygiene plays an important role in keeping them healthy, away from germs and bacteria. Give your dogs a relaxing and less-stressful bath by following the tips mentioned above.