How Often You Should Wash Your Dog & Other Bathing Tips

Although most dogs would much rather skip the bath, bathing plays an important role in the health of your dog’s coat and skin. While dogs do not require daily baths the same way as we do, they still require regular baths. How regular for your pup depends on several factors including the type of coat and their environment.

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The following are some general guidelines when it comes to your bathing your dog, depending on their coat.

  • Dogs that have oily coats may need to bathe as frequently as once a week. Breeds include Basset Hounds, Labrador Retrievers, and Chesapeake Bay Retrievers.

  • Short-haired breeds with smooth coats do well with less frequent baths. Breeds such as Beagles, Boston Terriers, and Boxers only require the occasional bath.

  • Breeds with water-repellent coats should be bathed less often in order to preserve their natural oils. Golden Retrievers and Great Pyrenees are examples.

  • Dogs with a double-coat do best with less bathing but more brushing. Examples of double-coated breeds include Akita, Husky, Bernese Mountain Dog, Shiba Inu, and Pomeranian.

If your dog loves to go swimming, roll around in the mud or you live in an environment where your dog is constantly getting dirty, then you might want to bathe them more frequently. Do try to avoid bathing your dog more often than necessary as it can strip their coat of its natural oils, making it dry and more prone to dandruff, frizzies, and mats.

Tips for Washing Your Dog

  • Positive association. As with anything new you introduce to your pup, you’ll want to tie bath time to something positive. Offer your pup treats, toys, and affection to get your dog into the bath and each time they behave well during the bathing process.

  • Start young. If you have a puppy, start bathing them as soon as possible so they will be less opposed to the experience. Getting your pup used to the tub early on means you will encounter less trouble down the road.

  • Protect the ears. Be sure to avoid your dog’s ears when washing them as it is not only uncomfortable for them, it can cause health problems. If your dog lets you, try placing cotton balls in their ears. If they do not let you, simply try to avoid spraying water into them.

  • Choose the right shampoo. For a positive bath experience, you will want to choose a shampoo that does not irritate or dry out your dog’s skin. A mild shampoo that will clean and remove unwanted odors while not strip away any important oils is ideal.

  • Work from the neck down. In addition to avoiding the ears, you will also want to keep their eyes and mouth safe. To do so, wash your dog from the neck down using a bucket or cup. If you want to wash your dog’s face, use a damp washcloth.

When to Visit a Professional Groomer

If you have tried to bathe your dog and were unsuccessful, or the idea of attempting to bathe your dog without a hitch seems unlikely, you can take your pup to the groomer. A trip to the groomer includes more than a bath, it also includes ear cleaning, nail clipping, trimming hair around the ears, eyes, and feet, and additional services that you might have trouble doing on your own. Professional groomers are a must for certain breeds, including Poodles, Yorkies, Maltese, Springers, and others with hair that grows long.

Contact Us for Doggie Day Care & Grooming Services in Charlotte, NC

At Club Fetch, we offer grooming services for pups in our day care and for pups that are spending the night. We offer everything from shampooing and conditioning to nail clippings, ear cleaning, and more. Please feel free to contact us with any questions or reach out to our groomer Dario directly by calling 704-620-9223. If you are looking for a pet daycare in the Charlotte, NC area for pet sitting or boarding, reach out to us today!

Prepare Yourself with a Pet First Aid Kit

Most homes have first aid kits prepared in case of an emergency with you or a loved one, but it rarely crosses a pet owner’s mind to have a first aid kit prepared for your dog or puppy. You never know when disaster will strike, so it’s always important to be prepared! In this blog, we will talk about essential items to have in your home and/or vehicle as a part of your animal first aid kit.

What Items Should I Have?

Wound Spray

                There are a variety of wound sprays you can find at your local pet store, Amazon, etc. that will come in handy should your pet ever get cut or scratched and need a sterilization and cleaning tool.

Bandages/Gauze & Tape

                Do NOT use adhesive bandages on your pets such as Band-Aids, as these can stick to the animal’s fur. Self-cling bandages also work in instances where you need a wound wrapped fast, as this material can stick to itself without clinging to your pet’s fur. In most cases, gauze and tape can be used to secure wounds on your dogs. In instances of extreme emergency—if no gauze or other bandages can be found—clean rags, socks, and items of clothing can be used.

Scissors

                Gauze, tape, and rags/items of clothing are not always easy to tear. A pair of scissors can come in handy during a tough situation where materials need to be cut. There are also specially made scissors with soft edges to prevent you from accidentally harming your pet during a bandage removal/application.

Eye Wash & Ear Wash

                If your dog ever gets some type of contaminant in its eyes or ears, it’s good to have a sterile saline eye wash or ear wash handy to flush out the pollutants. This can help prevent burning, stinging, itching, or more.

Dog Cone

                Dogs scratch and lick at infected or injured areas which can exacerbate the problem. Cones help prevent this by not allowing them to reach the problem areas.

Hydrogen Peroxide

                We all know dogs tend to eat things they shouldn’t. In the scenarios where you discover your dog has eaten something poisonous or bad for them, hydrogen peroxide can be used to induce vomiting and rid their stomachs of any toxic substances, if you’re worried about getting to the veterinarian in time. Make sure to call your local veterinarian to ensure you’re giving the proper amount for your size of animal. In addition, still take your animal to see the vet following this treatment as it will need to be seen by a professional to ensure no other damage has occurred.

Water

                While it may not seem important, if your animal needs a wound flushed, burn soothed, paw soaked, or drink of water on a hot day, you want to have water handy. It’s smart to keep a gallon of water in your car or near your pet first aid kit should any of these scenarios arise.

Papers and Medications

                For animals with special needs such as diabetic dogs, dogs with allergies, or any other diseases, it’s important to have their medications handy in case one of these problems flares up while you’re home or travelling with your pet. Ask your local veterinarian what medications you should have on hand for your specific animal.

Muzzle/Restraints

                Animals can become hostile or aggressive when injured. To protect yourself as well as your pet, keep blankets, a muzzle, or anything else that can be used as a restraint on hand to secure them in place.

Other Items to Consider

  • Antibiotic ointment

  • Rectal thermometer

  • Gloves

  • Cotton balls

  • Q-tips

  • Pet wipes

  • Dish soap

  • Dog treats

  • Contact card with pet poison hotline number, veterinarian number, emergency pet hospital number, etc.

It’s important to understand that having a first aid kit for your dog does not mean that they do not need to see a veterinarian immediately after its use. You should call your veterinarian or go to an emergency vet clinic if your animal has been injured or requires any type of treatment.