How to Give Your Dog a Better Bath
When you take a new pet into your home and life, you commit to feeding and caring for them. One of those responsibilities we all dread, none so much as your dog, is bath time. It is a necessary, but often trying part of your relationship. Some dogs love bath time. For those pet parents, consider yourself lucky and skip to the next paragraph. For the rest, coaxing your dog is maybe a little trickier. Follow these tips to find out how to give your dog a better bath.
Training Through Voice Tone
Try soft or excited tones. Make them feel like it’s fun. If you start this bath time training as a puppy, they can get trained to think of baths this way. You can also try having a particular, waterproof toy that they get to play with or hold during their bath. You can also coax them with treats.
Most dogs just take baths as a trial of life and eventually hop in where they are supposed to go. Warm water is vital to making bath time a comfortable experience. Usually just a fraction warmer than you might like it is the best temperature. Dogs do run at just a few degrees higher temperature than humans so, don’t go scalding hot.
Another important thing is to get the right shampoo. Use dog-specific shampoos and be especially mindful of any skin reactions, especially in light-colored breeds. The pH balance on a dog’s skin is paramount to staying healthy. Human shampoo or shampoo not specially made for dogs can disrupt that balance. The size of the dog is even important in this, as their size can affect the alkalinity of their skin. Ask your vet for recommendations if you’re not sure.
Be sure to scrub those hard to reach places. Be gentle and examine your pooch for any rashes, skin irritations, or missing patches of fur. Always be careful of their eyes and their ears. Ear washing should be done separately and with a particular ear wash solution. The importance of this is to fight off ear infections. Using essential oils from plants like lavender and eucalyptus after a bath can be perfect for a natural, added scent.
Join the Fun
One thing to consider is joining them. Wearing your old shorts and hopping in the tub with them helps them feel more comfortable and helps you get them nice and clean. Some dogs will even join you in the shower. Use a removable shower head with a hose to help get them thoroughly rinsed. Always remember how important it is to rinse the soap away, and a good towel rub can make up for any bath.
Bath time can seem like a trial, but when you know what to expect, and how to make the experience productive and pleasant for your pet, the next few rinses might not feel so trying.
“How to Give Your Dog a Better Bath”
Guest Writer: Eileen O’Shanassy is a freelance writer and blogger based out of Flagstaff, AZ. She writes on a variety of topics and loves to research and write. She enjoys baking, biking, and kayaking. Check out her Twitter @eileenoshanassy.
Another article by Eileen O’Shanassy:
- How to Check Your Dog for Ticks and Other Illnesses
- Bad Dog: How to Weed Out Bad Dog Behaviors
- Tricks to Train a More Obedient Dog
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