How Often Should You Bathe Your Dog?
When to get clean isn’t a decision that should be left to my mutt. After his first bath he was sure to let us know he was done with the tub for good. But over the years he’s shown some sort of tacit enjoyment for when the jets spray his underbelly. We think he’s secretly always enjoyed it.
But how much George will attempt to ruse us, kicking and screaming his way into the tub, doesn’t reflect how often we bathe him, unfortunately for him. We do it once every two weeks or when he stinks, basically. The recommended period is usually somewhere between every other week and once every three months. Some say twice a year but good luck with that smell.
When and how often to bathe your dog can depend on numerous things – even down to what breed of dog you have.
What to Consider When Bathing Your Dog
Some dogs can’t sit in the suds for too long and not all off-the-shelf products are suitable, and for various reasons. When asking yourself ‘how often should you bathe your dog?’, these factors should be considered:
- Activity level
- Hair Length
- Skin Conditions and Allergies
Not all dogs are the same but we know they’re all special. Some of the special ones though require extra care with washing. If treatment is too tasking at home, check your dog insurance policy to see if it can be upgraded for affordable grooming with a nearby service.
Washing puppies, as wonderful as it is to experience, should also be treated with care.
How Often Should You Bathe a Puppy?
Weeks are substantial in their development, and how often you can bathe a puppy comes down to how old the puppy is. It’s good to get them familiar with the process, and the more they experience being bathed the more cooperative they become as they get older. But over-washing a puppy is much like with an older dog, in that it removes the natural oils that fortify its coat. Over-washing a puppy damages the coat quicker than with an older dog though and can be crucial to development. Consult with your vet about how often to wash your little guy or gal.
Cleaning Time: Five Tips for a Successful Dog Bath
Here’s some basic rules we can all follow for clean coats and a swifter moment of hell for our dogs.
- Choose the Right Products: Some quick-grab products aren’t good enough for our pooches. Take your time and try out different shampoos to see what works best. Consulting your vet is never a bad idea.
- Bath Time Every Time: Just like when the lead is grabbed or the word ‘walk’ is uttered, a dog knows where this one is going. While there might be some paw-dragging, association is good for a dog if done properly. Always use the same bathing spot if possible to make it as much a familiar, non-event as possible.
- Prepare Your Pooch: Wet, matted fur will irritate your dog’s skin, so give them a good brush before going in the shower to remove any matted stuff. I’m sure they’ll thank you later. Getting everything ready like towels and treats and face masks is probably a good idea too.
- Clean ‘Em Right: Getting that coat nice and shiny comes with a good cleaning routine, sure. But part of the process is what makes your canine comfortable. Cleaning from the feet up is recommended but it isn’t essential. Find a good routine that works for your dog too.
- Have Fun: Bathing shouldn’t be a bad experience for humans or dogs. Do what you can to make it less stressful and perhaps even fun. Shower them with treats and toys and maybe even get in if you’re feeling crazy. I can’t say I’ve ever tried this with George. Perhaps I’m too harsh on him.