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Dog Bathing Hacks

August 3, 2023

Baths have never been Fido’s favorite thing. Even pups that love swimming tend to dislike being bathed. However, regardless of your canine buddy’s opinion on the matter, grooming is very important for his health and comfort … as well as his appearance. Read on as a Rockbridge, VA vet offers some advice on bathing your four-legged friend.

Pick The Right Shampoo

If Fido’s skin and coat are healthy, you may be able to use any doggy shampoo, though we’d advise avoiding anything that is heavily perfumed. If your pooch has sensitive skin and/or allergies, go for something very gentle, such as an oatmeal shampoo. Dogs with skin issues may benefit from medicated shampoos. Just check with your vet first. Don’t use human products. Dogs’ skin doesn’t have the same PH level as ours does, so our products are too strong for them.

Time It Right

How often Fido needs to be bathed will depend on the type of coat he has. Some pups need monthly beauty sessions. Others may only need a few baths a year. Ask your vet for advice.

Set Up Properly

Keep all of Fido’s grooming tools in a dedicated tote, bag, or caddy. That way, you’ll have everything you need in one place. You may want to include an apron for yourself as well.

Keep It Pawsitive

Fido’s dislike of baths often stems from negative associations. Desensitization training can go a long way towards helping your furry best friend build a positive opinion about his beauty treatments. Call him into the bathroom, and have him get into the tub. Then, give him a special treat—something super yummy, like a piece of steak or burger—and let him go. After a few rounds of this, he may have a miraculous change of heart.

Prep Work

Give your canine pal a good brushing before you bring him into the bathroom. The less dead fur you have to deal with, the better! We’d also advise cutting Fido’s nails a day or so beforehand.

Put A Mat Down

A thick mat will protect your tub from scratches. This will also help keep Fido from slipping. 

Tail Wags

Don’t forget to give Fido a special treat after his beauty session. Then, relax and enjoy cuddles from a clean, fresh-smelling pup!

Do you have questions about your dog’s health or care? Call us, your Rockbridge, VA pet hospital, anytime!

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