How to Properly Bathe a Dog


Well-groomed dog hair is a real decoration and an indicator of the good health of the pet, as well as evidence of the responsible attitude of the owner. He will acquire an elegant, presentable, and even sporty appearance, that is, his coat is regularly looked after. In addition to cutting and combing the coat, care necessarily means washing it. Gentle cleansing is a very important stage because it performs not only an aesthetic function but also a hygienic one. Bathing a pet is a simple activity for experienced owners who know how to properly wash a dog.

Thanks to the dog57 article, those who are going to have to shower for the first time will cope with this task. you will find everything below. Read on.

important points

Dogs are fairly clean, and in most cases, they can do without bathing. They do not sweat, but lick themselves, getting rid of impurities and dead hair. In representatives of several breeds, wool has a self-cleaning property. But a dog that shares housing with people still needs to be washed from time to time according to human rules - in the bathroom, with hygienic cosmetics.

Water procedures help the dog get rid of fat and dust accumulated on his body and coat, exfoliating scales of the skin, and dead hairs of the coat. It is this "garbage" that turns into a food medium for the development of various microorganisms. The animal becomes susceptible to bacterial and fungal infections, it can be flea and other parasites. These possibilities are dangerous for the dogs themselves and their owners.

Rules for bathing dogs

Bath the dog after the walk, not before. The time for the water procedure is chosen in such a way that the pet has time to dry before the next walk, given that in representatives of several breeds the coat can remain wet for several hours. Otherwise, your pet risks catching a serious cold, especially in the cold season.

The dog must be calm. If the dog is too excited, wait until he calms down, otherwise, bathing will turn out to be a dramatic struggle.
The water to wash the dog should be warm. The optimum temperature for bathing large pets with a thick coat is 34-37 °C, for small dogs - 35-38 °C, for “naked” dogs - 37-39 °C.

It is recommended to brush pets with long or curly hair before bathing. The procedure is repeated after washing.

Animals should be washed with a special zoo shampoo. It is recommended to first wash the product in your hands with a little water, and then apply it to the wool.

Shampoo and conditioner should be washed off well, checking if the foam remains in secluded places on the dog's body.

The dog is dried with a towel, delicately touching the wool. It is not necessary to rub the hair and ruffle it.

If the apartment is cold, you can dry the pet with a hairdryer by choosing a model with low cycles and a low speed. Airflow should not be directed to the dog's muzzle. With frequent bathing of the dog, constant use of a hairdryer is not recommended.

Many dogs do not like to take a shower, so you should get used to washing from the puppy. But it should be borne in mind that children are more susceptible to colds than adults. During and after the washing process, special care must be taken to ensure that the dog does not overcool.

The "head washing" should be thorough, and not accompanied by causing pain to the puppy. After each procedure, he must be rewarded with a treat. Over time, puppies get used to washing and, having grown up, do it willingly or, in any case, do not panic and do not rebel.

How often should you bathe dogs?

No one has discussed the need for washing for a long time, but the question of the frequency of this procedure causes disagreements not only among animal owners but also among veterinarians. Here are the main opinions in this regard:

It is enough to wash the dog 2-3 times a year;
the pet needs to be washed no more than once every 6-8 weeks;
washing should be done every 2 weeks;
The dog should be washed as needed.

Supporters of the “moderate streak” often do not recommend washing the animal unnecessarily and advise arranging bathing several times a year, preferably during the molting period of the dog. They argue this approach by the fact that due to the lack of moderation in the use of shampoo or soap, the dog's hair deteriorates, becomes brittle and dull.

A thin layer of fat is lost on the pet's body, it is constantly washed off, and the skin becomes dry. Cracks, dandruff may appear. In addition, frequent bathing leads to a decrease in the water resistance of the coat, and the dog tends to catch colds.

Adherents of ordinary water procedures consider such arguments conservative, having lost their justification with the advent of professional means for caring for animal hair.

They believe the richest combination of special pet shampoos, soaps, and conditioners deflect traditional fears.

As a rule, dog owners who believe that bathing is a healthy measure tend not to fight their dogs with enviable steadfastness. They wash dogs according to the schedule recommended by their vet, depending on the breed, conditions of detention, and as needed.

Some owners like to bathe their pets for the sake of beauty. Their wings are usually miniature decorative subspecies. But these dogs, unless, of course, they participate in exhibitions, do not need frequent washing at all. Many of them do not even have a place to get dirty: they do not spend much time on the street or “walk” in the hands of the owners and handbags.

Sometimes a dog needs a therapeutic bath. In this case, the frequency of water procedures is determined by the veterinarian. He also recommends special laundry detergents.

Frequent washing is not required for dogs with fine hair, and dogs with hard hair and a thick coat, for example, Labradors. Their coat is capable of self-cleaning, and with abuse of water procedures, this property can be lost. But the dog, which does not have an undercoat, can and should be washed more often than representatives of other breeds, and preferably monthly. The dog needs a regular haircut, and before that, it must be bathed.

Any breed that lives in an apartment or cage should be washed thoroughly if it has fallen into the mud. This is done urgently, even if the dog was bathed the day before.

How to wash a dog

For bathing a pet today, products for hygienic bathing of the animal are used, created taking into account the acid-base balance of the animal's skin - from 6.2 to 7.4 pH (depending on age and breed). The "human" means for washing hair (the norm is 4-5.5 pH) should be abandoned. Also, laundry soap and soap with a rich scent will not work.

These products are very aggressive on a dog's skin. Its use can cause an allergic reaction in the animal, dermatitis, leading to eczema. In extreme cases, it is allowed to use baby soap or shampoo. In this case, it will be necessary to wash the foam with special care so that an unflattering coating does not form on the wool.

Specialized stores offer shampoos for different types of skin and coats of dogs. For fine-haired pets, it is recommended to use detergents that prevent the cap from falling into the thorns, for wire-haired animals - woven shampoos. Dogs with long, tangled hair are convenient to scrub with a tool that makes brushing easier later.

The shampoo is sold separately for dogs and elderly pets.
Animals with wool or skin problems buy specialty products that include proteins, wheat extracts, aloe vera, eucalyptus, and hydrocortisone. Dogs infected with flies are washed with shampoo that contains the insecticide, but it cannot be used regularly.

In the summer, the dog can be shampooed with a UV filter - this will protect his hair from fading. There are even funds with a bleaching component, with their help, the owners get rid of yellow spots on the pet's coat. For the dog participating in the shows, you can buy a tinted shampoo.

When choosing products for the hygienic bathing of an animal, give preference to colorless formulations. Shade is evidence of the presence of dye in shampoo and can act as an allergen. When buying detergent, you should not save: one container is usually enough for a long time. It is better to trust reputable manufacturers.

Where do you wash your dog?

In a city apartment, adult dogs are usually bathed in the bathroom. Puppies and miniature dogs are convenient to wash in a sink or even in a sink if their size allows. For this purpose, you can purchase a special pallet or a plastic bath bed at a pet store.

For a large dog, a shower cabin is preferred. Here it will be more comfortable than in the bathroom, and it becomes easier for the owner to keep the situation under control. There are collapsible dog pools and convenient washing stations, but installing them in a standard bath can be problematic.

How to properly wash your dog

For bathing, the pet must be prepared in advance. An hour and a half before the procedure, you need to close the windows, turn off the home air conditioner. Remove bathrobes from the bathroom, things that are dried on the battery - this property can get wet when the dog is shaken.

Prepare cotton swabs for the ears, a washcloth, terry cloth or sponge, a washcloth, shampoo, balm for rinsing. If the dog is large, a collar may be needed. It will allow you to keep the pet if it resists the "head washer".

Lay a rubber mat at the bottom of the shower or tub, or on the floor of a shower cabin so your dog's paws don't slide across the surface. The shell can be covered with a cloth. Near the place of bathing, put a rag so that the dog does not get injured by slipping after the procedure.

If you have long hair, dilute and lather the shampoo, this will allow you to soap the dog evenly. Keep jars with detergent and rinses open so you don't get distracted later. Fill the bathing container with warm water up to the animal's knees. Take your pet to the bathroom and close the door.

Insert cotton swabs into the dog's ears, they can be lubricated with Vaseline. It is not necessary to stick to the tampons deeply. It is enough that they do not fall.

Put the dog in the "pond", and pour it out of the bath - first the back and neck, then the tail and paws. All wool should be well soaked in water.

Apply shampoo or foaming lotion to the dog's "fur coat" and soapy evenly. If your dog has a long coat, rub the cleaner in the direction of the hair growth, otherwise, they may become confused.

Rub the entire body of the dog well, except for the head. Wipe the mask separately with a damp cloth or towel (without soap). If there are folds, wipe each one. Wipe your ears only from the outside.

Rinse the foam well with water from the shower. Especially thoroughly wash the armpits and nape, as shampoo usually accumulates. The detergent is washed off until the water from the wool is clear.

It is recommended for dogs with long hair to apply conditioning to a damp "coat". It is washed off after 3-5 minutes.

Squeeze the coat and cover the dog's back with a bath or microfiber towel so that the fabric absorbs the water.

Pick up the dog and put it on a dry cloth, given that he will immediately begin to shake it off.

Take cotton swabs from your pet's ears, hand him a treat and praise him, even if he rebelled.

Representatives of breeds prone to colds, it is desirable to wrap and, without hesitation, deliver them to a warm place. In the summer, the dog can dry on its own, and in the winter it is better to dry the coat with a hairdryer.

shower "dry"

In some cases, the traditional shower should be replaced with "dry". The causes may be local or medical, for example, the postoperative period, vaccinations, eczema. In this case, sprays and dry shampoos containing talc and components with cleansing and degreasing properties are used.

Before the procedure, the dog must be carefully combed, eliminating barbs and dead hair. The composition is applied to a small area of ​​the wool and combed - in this way you need to process the entire coat.

No additional manipulations are required after "dry" washing. Special products can be replaced with ordinary talcum powder or wheat flour. After rubbing it into the wool, you need to wait about 20 minutes, and then start combing.

There is another way. In a container (250 ml), boiled water at room temperature, medical alcohol (1 teaspoon), and boric acid (0.5 teaspoons) are dissolved.

The dog's hair is combed against the growth and the prepared substance is applied with a spray gun. The teeth of the comb are wrapped with cotton wool, and then the coat is treated with it.

Cotton wool in the process of combing will become contaminated, and it must be changed. The procedure continues until the cotton wool remains clean. In a city apartment, it is better to conduct such sessions on the balcony, weather permitting.

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