How to bathe a dog? Well, good news for first-time pet owners.
When you first got your dog there were probably 1000 questions. What do I feed them and when? How can I make them stop barking at night? How to bathe a dog is probably one of them too.
So, buckle in and lets go through this together.
Most dogs I have met in my life liked baths….when they wanted to bath that is.
Growing up around the sea my family and I would very often take our dogs to the beach. Feeling the warm sunlight on my skin, the cool water encircling my legs, and the salty sea breeze lifting my spirits…
Usually taking my dogs to the beach made it a bit easier for me to wash them later as they had already gotten used to the water.
However, since most of us sadly do not live near bodies of water that we can go to all around the year, here is a simpler way to make sure your dog can enjoy their baths:
Table of Contents
How to Bathe a Dog
Before we get to discuss how you can give your dog the perfect baths, we should first understand why dogs need baths in the first place!
Does my dog need a bath?
Yes, but dog do not need baths as regularly as we do.
While we should get into the shower daily, your furry friend should only go regularly. Too much showering can cause skin problems as well as remove some of the natural oils, which keeps them and their fur healthy and protected.
Too often bathing makes their skin dry and more prone to dandruff, frizzies, and mats.
Bathing your dog is a regular grooming practice that will keep your dog’s coat clean and healthy. It also removes dirt, parasites, or other elements that can get stuck in their fur and can cause problems later on. You can also give your dog a bath to get rid of fleas and ticks.
How regular you need to bathe your dog depends on several factors:
Your dog’s environment, breed, and type of coat for example.
It is always best to consult with your veterinarian. They can advise you on how to bathe your dog best.
The easiest place to bathe your dog is usually a bathtub or shower stall.
Small dogs can be bathed in a sink. To avoid injuring your back and knees, get some “disposable” towels and a non-slip bathmat for your home. The disposable towels sole purpose from then on would be dog rub towels. They can also be used to clean up any mess your dogs may make while bathing.
Furthermore, this method is less expensive than paying for a groomer and you can avoid a mess at home.
Last but not least, make sure you have some spare clothes or an apron at home. Because your dog will make sure you are going to get wet as well.
Where to bathe your dog
That depends on several factors, too.
Depending on where you live, it boils down to 2 major options: indoors or outdoors.
Let’s start with indoors
If you are living in a cold country, don’t have an “outdoor” area, or it is winter in your area, you definitely have to bathe your dog indoors.
Depending on the size of your dog you should either bathe them inside the sink or the bathtub/shower stall. Small dog owners have a little bit of an advantage here.
Now let’s venture outdoors:
If it’s a sunny day outside and you feel like giving your pup a little outdoor bath, you might want to make sure of a couple of things.
You can get a plastic tub or an inflatable kiddie pool to bathe them in.
Don’t use your hose on a high setting, just sprinkle them gently.
Additionally, make sure your dog doesn’t run right back into the mud once you washed them.
Getting them into the water the second time will be much, much harder than the first time.
Here is a list of steps you should follow to make the bath experience as enjoyable for your dog as possible:
How to bathe your dog
- Brush your dog carefully before a bath. Like this, you can make sure you got out all mats and tangles.
- Use lukewarm water. Try not to use too hot or cold water as it may be unpleasant for your doggo.
- Use DOG shampoo. I know that we save at nothing to make sure our pets are loved and safe. Using dog shampoo is a great way to do that. It doesn’t dry their skin as a human shampoo would. Put a walnut-sized amount in your hand, and gently massage into your dog’s fur. Make sure not to get any soap into their eyes.
- Rinse all soap/shampoo out. Any leftover liquid in your dog’s fur will irritate their skin later one.
- Use a soothing tone. Make sure your dog feels safe. For quite some time your dog may act like your dragging them off for torture, but eventually, they will learn that bathing can actually be fun.
- Air-dry. If you really, really need to use a blow dryer, use it ONLY on the lowest wind and heat setting and far away from your dogs’ sensitive ears. The best thing to do is wrap them in a warm, fluffy towel and cuddle, cuddle, and cuddle some more.
- Reward them. Give them treats and maybe play a little bit with them. After a shower, they will either feel more relaxed or energized.
If your dog suffers from any allergies, please consult your vet first before bathing your dog. They will know best what you and your doggo can do about it and still enjoy nice baths.
I personally love washing my dogs.
Their fur will be super soft for cuddling and they will smell will be super fresh!
However, please bear in mind that not all dogs enjoy bathing. This is why it is super important to be patient with them and to constantly love them, no matter what, If you have any funny pictures of your dog bathing or in the water, leave it in the comments. Read you next time!