Sprinklers, puddles, rivers, and oceans – so what’s the big deal about the bathtub? As soon as you even hint at putting your dog in the tub for a good wash, man’s best friend turns into man’s best foe.
Whether you’re preparing for your first show, or simply scrubbing the grime off your favorite canine, this site is your source for grooming tips and product selection when it comes to bathing your dog. Here you can learn what you’ll need to bathe your mutt, how and where to bathe him, and most of all, how to keep him happy before during and after his bath.
Before you begin . . .
make sure that you plan ahead. Have you picked a good location, one where your dog will feel comfortable and be restrained with relative ease? Will you have plenty of time?
Will you be using warm or cold water? Warm is good; hot is not. If you make this a pleasant experience, your dog will learn to appreciate his bath. Are you going to be indoors or out?
If you are indoors, have you planned for your escape route? Wet dogs will shake! For bathing a hard-to-handle dog indoors, consider a shower hose kit.
If you are outside, be prepared to keep your furry pal occupied for a while. Experienced dog washers will tell you that dogs will rub their freshly washed, damp coats on anything – the lawn, dirt, even compost. So keep watch!
The Finishing Touches
Just because your dog is clean doesn’t mean that the grooming is over!
Her hair, nails and ears should be looked after regularly to keep your dog healthy.
White dogs are susceptible to staining. Some pet products and shampoos were developed specifically to address this need. Select a pet shampoo without bleach or peroxide. New products are available that contain “optical enhancers” to safely whiten whites and enhance colors.
Some grooming products are available to help you manage your dog’s coat. Detanglers and finishing sprays help make after bath comb-outs easier and help to keep mats from forming between baths.
Toenails, Ears and the Delicate Bits
Bath time is a good time to check the length of your dog’s toenails. If you feel comfortable trimming them yourself, ask your veterinarian to show you how. If you don’t want to do it yourself, veterinarians and local groomers will trim your dog’s nails for a small fee.
It’s also a good idea to get in the habit of checking your dog’s ears at this time. The outer canal should appear clean. Smelly, itchy infections can result from excess moisture built up in dogs’ ear canals, and an ear cleaner may be needed. If a waxy buildup is present, see your veterinarian for a diagnosis and advice for cleaning.