Make Dog Bath Time an Enjoyable Experience for Everyone

November 22, 2013

Some of us have lucked out with easy-going dogs when it comes to bath time.

When it’s time for me to give Patrona a good washing, which is not too often (I bathe my dog every 3 to 4 months), I run the water at a lukewarm temperature and I also use a hand held shower head, to make things easy for me to rinse out my dog thoroughly in the hard to reach places such as under her arms, and back legs. I tell Patrona “inside” and she climbs into the bathtub on her own with no fuss. I soak her thoroughly and I give her a wash with the shampoo. The shampoo that I like to use is made by Sadie & Mitts, it gives my girl a nice clean smell and her fur is so silky smooth. I use the tip of my fingers to work in a proper lather with the shampoo. I start off at the back of her neck just behind her ears and I work my way down the neck to her chest, shoulders, front legs and paws, then I gradually work my way over to her back and under belly and back paws. I rinse her out and give her another wash with the conditioner, always making sure, that I properly rinse out so there’s no leftover residue. The times that I’ve rushed through her baths, her skin and fur got all flaky. So I’ve learnt to take my time with it! A good indicator that there’s no leftover shampoo or conditioner in her fur, is when the water runs clear from my dog, and her coat is no longer foamy. To safely wash her face without getting water in the ears or shampoo in the eyes, I soak a wash cloth and gently wipe around her eyes and in her ears without prodding too deep. After that, I take the wash cloth and lightly scrub around and under her muzzle. To dry my dog, I use a Drypet towel it’s made out of microfiber material, very soft to the touch, and super absorbent, it dries my dog in seconds.

For some dog owners bath time is a negative experience altogether, and not a task that is looked forward to. It’s always good to find ways to make bath time a pleasant experience for you and your dog, and before you know it, it will be another way to bond with your k9 companion. The following is my recommendation on how to make bath time something to look forward to and enjoyable.

Bath time: Making it into a pleasant experience.

Dogs know how to read your body language and have a great sense of picking up on your energy. They know when you’re relaxed, happy, sad, frustrated, agitated and tense. If bathing your dog is a negative experience for you, feeling frustrated or tensed up, it will in turn make your dog feel frustrated as well, and before you have even started to wash your dog, it has already started off as a negative experience. Stay calm and you’re dog will be calm, do not encourage any nervous energy or behavior.

How to wash your dog:

To wash your dog you will need:

  • A Drypet towel
  • A pet friendly shampoo such as Sadie & Mitts
  • A hand held shower head

Some people bathe their dogs in the bathtub, whilst others will bathe their dogs outdoors. If you are washing your dog in your bath tub make sure the temperature of the water is lukewarm. If you bathe your dog outside, make sure it’s not too cold for your dog’s comfort. Remember if you want this to be an enjoyable experience for yourself, it has to be enjoyable for your dog as well.

While bathing your dog, you want to prevent water from entering its ears, because this will cause irritation and once water gets into the ear and is not properly cleaned, it will become a breeding ground for bacteria. We recommend that you clean your dog’s ear occasionally, so to not disturb the healthy wax levels in its ear and avoid altogether future ear infections. To bathe your dog, start off by soaking your dog from the chest, shoulders, and work your way over its back and under belly. Use dog shampoo such as Sadie & Mitts, human shampoo is too harsh for your dog’s skin. We recommend that you use a hand held shower head, for a thorough wash and insure that there is no left over shampoo residue in your dog’s skin and coat. If you do not thoroughly wash out the shampoo, it will cause your dog’s skin to have irritations and flakiness. If your dog is not accustomed to getting wet with the hand held shower head, put your hand over the shower head to regulate the flow of water. Rub your dog holding the shower head in your hand until it is fully soaked. In time, you will be able to hold the hand held shower head over your dog without your dog stressing. A great way to dry your dog is using Drypet. Its microfiber material is soft and gentle to the touch, as well as super absorbent and your dog will be dry in no time.

How often to wash your dog.

For a dog with normal skin it is recommended to bathe once a month maximum or when necessary. Some dogs are naturally clean and do not produce too much body odour. Some dogs have sensitive skin. This requires less bathing, and you should only bathe when your dog’s coat is too greasy, or if your dog has gotten dirty from rolling in mud or something stinky such as poop. It is recommended to use shampoos with gentle ingredients for sensitive skin such as oatmeal and aloe vera. Some dogs can go months without needing a bath. The less you bathe your dog, the healthier its skin and fur will be. The more you bathe your dog, the more dry and irritated your dog’s skin will get. Bathe your dog only when its necessary. Weekly and bi-weekly baths are counterproductive towards the healthy maintenance of your dog’s skin and coat. (unless your dog is allergic to air born allergens and requires more often bathing)

Posted by: Kevin Uhindu

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