Dog feeling fresh and clean after spa bath

Most vets and groomers recommend bathing about once a month, unless your dog has skin problems. Bathing too often may cause dry, flaky skin, as it does in humans. And bathing too infrequently, especially if the dog spends a lot of time outdoors, can lead to a smelly dog. You will know pretty quickly when your dog needs a bath.

The earlier in the dog’s life you begin the practice of bathing the better, so he gets used to it as a puppy and good bath behavior carries over to the adult dog. Remember to go slow and reward your dog for being calm. Dogs that are used to being bathed at home will behave better for a professional groomer.

Bathing is made more complicated because not every dog likes water. For every retriever who turns his face up to the sprayer in pure delight there’s a shivering Shih Tzu trying to wiggle out of your arms. But if you don’t force things by trying to move too quickly, you can introduce almost any dog to the tub or shower and get him used to it. After a few times, it may not be the dog’s favorite activity, but he’ll stand still and let you soap him up and rinse him.

Before you start, gather up the shampoo, conditioner, a brush or comb, and a few treats. Once the dog goes into the water, you can’t turn around to get something you forgot, or you’ll have a sopping wet puppy bounding around your house.

First, comb the mats and visible dirt out of the dog’s hair. Then wet the dog. You can bathe small dogs in the kitchen sink. The bigger dogs can either be taught to get washed in a tub or to accompany you into the shower. Placing a towel on the bottom of the sink or tub will help your pup feel more comfortable since they won’t slip on the slick wet surface. Make sure to thoroughly rinse you dog after shampooing and conditioning. Remaining soap residue can dry a dog’s skin. Make sure to have plenty of towels as well. As soon as a dog comes out of the tub or the shower, he’ll want to dry himself off, and if you don’t put a towel around him immediately he’ll use any soft surface to rub himself dry, including the couch. And one towel won’t do it; dogs seem to soak towels in a way no human has ever done.

Professional groomers blow-dry the dogs with commercial hair dryers. If you want to do this at home, make sure you set the dryer to cool. And don’t be surprised if the dog really dislikes it, as many dogs are afraid of machines and their noises. Discontinue use of the dryer if your dog becomes too upset.

If you need help getting your dog more active or introducing them to some new friends, we here at Dogtopia can help. We offer a safe and fun-filled environment with an action-packed daily schedule to ensure your furry friend gets plenty of exercise and socialization while you are at work or running errands during the day. Learn more about our dog daycare services here or contact us for more information.