Tips for A Hassle-Free Dog Bath
Franklin P. Jones once said, “Anybody who doesn’t know what soap tastes like never washed a dog.” And for most of us with a precious pooch, this is probably true. But over the years, and with extensive trial and error, we’ve discovered some tips to a hassle-free dog bath!
Before the Bath
Go Out and Exercise
Dogs instinctively enjoy cooling off in a bath when they feel hot and exhausted after exercise. It’s the same feeling humans have when we’ve been outside sweating and nothing sounds better than a cold shower! Use these instincts to your advantage by going for a brisk walk or jog before heading into the bath tub. Not only will your pup be ready for a dip in the water, but they will have less energy to fight the process.
Take Time to Brush
After your walk, take a few minutes to brush your dog. Make sure to gently remove any mats or loose dirt from their fur before they become locked in with water. Not only does this make the actual washing go faster, but it also allows the shampoo to get into their coat.
Get the Right Tools
Making sure you have all the right equipment before bath time makes everything run a little smoother. You’ll need:
- A Non-Slip Surface. This can be a specially designed, non-skid mat or just a towel laid on the bottom of the tub. This gives your dog traction in during their bath and will help ease their anxiety.
- The Right Shampoo. Human shampoo isn’t toxic to pets but it doesn’t have the correct pH level and the fragrances can cause your dogs skin to become dry and irritated. To make sure you’re using the correct shampoo, talk to your vet. They will be able to tell you the best options to addresses specific coat and skin issues like the OxGord Organic Oatmeal Dog Shampoo for itchy skin.
- Several Towels. Having towels on hand is common sense, but make sure you grab them before you desperately need them.
During the Bath
Use Lukewarm Water
Dogs are very sensitive to temperatures so what feels okay to you, may not feel okay to them. Fill the tub with lukewarm water before they get in so the sound of running water doesn’t add additional stress to the experience.
Use a Washcloth
It is very important to keep your dogs ears, eyes, and nose clear of soap and water during their bath. Use a sprayer or cup to wash your dogs body and then wash their face with a washcloth to gently remove dirt.
After the Bath
Dry Your Dog
Dogs don’t typically enjoy the scent of shampoo and, for whatever reason, would much rather smell like mud. To avoid ruining all your hard work, don’t let your dog outside until they are completely dry. Throw a towel over your dog and dry them off as best as you can. If you want to use a hair dryer to speed up the drying process, make sure your dog isn’t afraid of the noise and be careful not to burn their skin. Another option is to use an extra absorbent towel made for pets like the Bone Dry Ultra Absorbent Microfiber Towel.
Reward your dog with a few treats or a healthy snack afterwards to help them associate baths with something positive.