5 August 2019

How to wash your dog

Dogs and puppies get into all sorts of mischief and you probably will find you need to wash them more often than you thought!  Ideally, an adult dog shouldn’t be washed too much as it interferes with the oils in their coat but bathing a puppy is an important part of the socialisation process. 

Having a bath could be a frightening experience for a dog, especially if it’s their first time.  If possible, choose a calm time to introduce them to the bath. Some pups are small enough to bathe in a sink or a basin. Fill the bottom of the area with warm water, just enough so they can paddle in it the first time and then, calmly place the dog in the water and let them play for a while. Make encouraging noises and reassure them if they are frightened. Gently splash water over their coat, avoiding their eyes and nose then use the mildest pH balanced pet shampoo you can find (puppy and kitten shampoo is best for all ages) to gently massage their coat and carefully rinse it off. Some dogs tolerate the shower but best not to try that until they are confident being bathed.  When they are all clean give them a good towel dry and brush with lots of encouragement and reinforce this with a treat.

If your dog is very scared then just remove them from the situation, dry them off, give some TLC and try again another day.  In the meantime, you could keep their face and bottom clean with warm water and a soft cloth.

Dogs do have a habit of rolling about in smelly things, for some reason they love fox poo which is the smelliest of all! Sometimes this smell can linger even after bathing. Preparation is key here, if you know your dog has this habit then have some wipes with you to remove most of it while you are still out walking. When you get home use a pH balanced shampoo specifically designed to remove fox poo as this will help neutralise the smell.

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