How to bathe a dog at home
How to bathe a dog at home, your choice of bath depends on whether you are grooming commercially or just trimming your own dog at home. For salon purposes, baths specifically made for the professional groomer are available, some of which recycle the water. Alternatively, a human bath or a catering sink can be used. Whatever bath you choose, ensure that the height is set correctly for you to bath large or small dogs.
For grooming at home, obviously the choice is yours whether you wish to bath the dog in your own bath or sink, or if you wish to buy one specifically for the purpose. However, remember to ensure that the bath has a non-slip bottom for the dog’s protection.
Tips for how to bathe a dog at home
Shampoos and conditioners
The first step for How to bathe a dog at home is choosing the suitable shampoos and conditioners, there are five main types of shampoo:
• Cleansing: These contain a strong substance that acts against grease and dirt.
• Mild: These remove grease and dirt, leaving in some of the natural oils.
• Medicated: These contain mild anti-bacterial products that act on the skin.
• Veterinary: These are prescribed by vets for particular skin conditions.
• Insecticidal: These kill parasites.
Although many different types of shampoo are available for all the different coat types and colours, they will all fit into one of the above mentioned categories. A shampoo should be used according to the manufacturer’s instructions, but it is generally diluted.
Occasionally you may have dogs that are very greasy or particularly dirty and here a tiny amount of washing-up liquid or undiluted shampoo can be helpful. Use washing-up liquid only as a last resort as the coat will be stripped of its natural oils.
Again several makes of conditioner are available. Trial and usage or recommendation is the only way to discover what suits a dog’s coat. Do not over-use conditioner and ensure it is rinsed out thoroughly, otherwise the coat will be left greasy.
The 2nd step for How to bathe a dog at home is following these below items to ensure that the job is done thoroughly:
1- Check the water temperature on the inside of your wrist to make sure it is at the body temperature.
2- Prepare the shampoo.
3- Place the dog in the bath (ensure safety by using a rubber mat in the bottom of the bath and a bath fastener).
4- Wet the dog thoroughly, keeping the shower head close to the body, starting behind the shoulders and working back over the body, down the legs and tail and then finally the head.
This method will help with dogs that are nervous because you are not alarming them by going straight around the eyes and ears. Work the water through the coat to ensure total saturation; this is particularly important for heavy, thick coats. Take care not to let the water go into the ears or nose.
It is possible for a small dog or short-nosed dog to drown by water entering the nasal passages and going into the lungs. Water in the ear canal can cause irritation.
5-Check and empty the anal glands if necessary.
6-Apply shampoo using a sponge as this creates a better lather – the lather shows that the shampoo is working. Begin shampooing at the tail to remove any residue from the glands. Shampoo down each back leg to the foot.
7-Shampoo the body and undercarriage, the front legs, feet, shoulders and chest and then finally apply the shampoo carefully to the head.
Cover the eyes to ensure that no shampoo goes in and wipe any excess suds away with your thumb. Remember to thoroughly wash the beard. By shampooing the head last there is less of a chance of shampoo going in the eyes; it may also stop the dog from shaking itself.
8- Rinse the dog from head to tail using your hand to push the suds and water through the coat. It is usually necessary to shampoo a dog twice to ensure that the coat is thoroughly cleaned so the first rinse can be done quickly.
9-Apply shampoo again in the same way as described above.
10-Rinse thoroughly, ensuring that the coat ‘squeaks’ as you push the water through. The squeaking sound means that all the suds are removed and this is vitally important as a residue can result in a dull, lifeless coat and possibly skin irritation.
11-Apply conditioner to the coat if appropriate.
13-Squeeze the excess water from the coat with your hands or use a moisture absorbent cloth.
14-Towel dry the dog.
How Often Should I Bathe My Dog?
The 3rd step for How to bathe a dog at home is detecting How Often Should you bathe your dog. While dogs do not need daily wash such as we all do, they really do want regular bath, but the answer question how often should you bathe your dog is dependent upon many aspects, like your pet’s surroundings and kind of coat.
There are some general guidelines for how to bathe a dog at home:
- Bathing once time per month is suitable for most breeds of dogs.
- Dogs are having oily coat, such as Basset Hounds, they need to bathe as frequently as once per a week.
- Many dogs breeds with short-haired and smooth coats, such as Beagles and Weimaraners, they do just well with less frequent baths.
- Short-coated breeds which are fastidious in their personal hygiene such as Basenjis, they rarely need a bath.
- Dog breeds have water-repellent coats, like as Great Pyrenees and Golden Retrievers, these breeds should be bathed less often so as to maintain their natural oils.
- Dogs breeds with thick, double coats — like as Malamutes, Samoyeds and other Northern breeds — they do better with fewer frequent baths and a lot of additional brushing which leads to remove loose, dead hair and aids to distribute natural oils that maintain your pet dog’s coat and skin healthy.
Obviously, if your pet wants to frolic in the water is enthusiastic about mud puddles, or resides at the nation and does lots of rolling in who-knows-what, you might need to bathe more often than if the exact identical dog lived at a flat in the’burbs.
That said, avoid bathing more often than truly necessary, or you’ll strip your dog’s coat of its natural oils, making it dry and more prone to dandruff, frizzies, and mats. Some shampoos may dry or irritate the dog’s skin more than others, in which case you should bathe less often or try a different shampoo.
Nevertheless, stop bathing more frequently than truly necessary, or you will not strip your dog pet’s coat of its natural oils, which makes it more prone to dandruff, dry, mats, and frizzes.
Some types of shampoos can irritate or dry your pet’s skin longer than many others, then you definitely should wash less frequently or attempt a different type of shampoo.
Ostensibly, the ideal way to judge when your pet wants to take a bathe is to provide her a good and great smell. How do your dog smell to you? Not too Great? Start running water.
Where To Wash Your Dog?
The 4th step for How to bathe a dog at home is selecting the bath location. Owners of small dogs possess a plus: they are able to simply plop canine at a sink or shower tub. However, in the event that you fail to fit your own dog at a sink, then make use of the tub, or be into the bathtub with her and employ a detachable nozzle.
A mobile Jacuzzi bathtub can be an alternative. When some bathtubs are made from thick vinyl, the others are collapsible and may readily be used outside or at the laundry room or mud room. Some dressing table or pet supply stores let outside dog bathtubs and also towels.
The 5th step for How to bathe a dog at home is choosing the drying procedure. There are various pieces of equipment for drying dogs depending on whether you are grooming your own pet or grooming commercially. Drying is done to:
- Dry the coat thoroughly
- Remove any knots or tangles
- Remove the dead undercoat
During drying, always keep your eyes open for lumps or bumps on the skin, any rashes or differences in coat texture. These basic signs could indicate an underlying problem – so here you can be an early warning system for the vet.
Other methods of drying
1- High velocity dryers
This piece of equipment is a must in a busy commercial salon as the drying time can be reduced dramatically. The power from the machine ‘blasts’ the excess water and dead undercoat from the dog and separates the coat.
However, some dogs may not like the sound or force of the blaster and if they object they should not be forced as this could genuinely frighten them. There are specific uses for different coat types.
Ideally, the groomer should wear goggles or face mask while using this equipment as loose hair and dead skin scales can cause eye irritation and inhalation of hair can lead to chest problems.
However, this will only occur after very many uses! The blaster should be used cautiously with a dog that has not met this equipment before. Introduce the machine at the lowest setting and always from the back end of the dog. Keep the nozzle close to the skin.
If the dog is comfortable with this, gradually move up the body leaving the head until last. If the dog again is comfortable, increase the power setting but if it is not happy then go back to the low setting. Always use the blaster in an up-and-down or side-to-side motion and never in circles.
If the blaster is used in the correct way it will divide and separate the coat and not tangle it. Continue working the coat until it is separated and water does not blow from it.
If the dog is accepting the blaster all over the body, you can try to blast very carefully around the head; cover the dog’s eyes with your hands and gently hold each ear as you blast it, keeping the ear canal covered.
These dryers are best known as ‘human’ dryers. They can be a useful extra dryer in a professional salon for drying small damp areas or difficult-to-reach areas on large dogs, e.g. armpits.
If grooming at home, the hand-held dryer has the advantage for the pet owner of being economical to buy, but they are difficult to use as the dog cannot be brushed at the same time.
Special holding arms can be purchased for this purpose, but this is definitely not the easiest or quickest way to dry your dog
These are most commonly used in the commercial salon and, as the name suggests, they comprise a dryer on a stand. Usually they have powerful motors with variable heat and speed settings, and their height is adjustable.
The major advantage of these dryers is that your hands are free to use the brush at the same time as drying, which is vital for certain breeds such as Poodles (Ut-Wo) or Bichon Frise (To-Wo).
4-Cage and cabinet dryers
With these two drying methods the principle is the same – the dog is enclosed in a secure area with warm air circulating around it. A cage dryer is usually attached to a normal metal dog crate. A cabinet dryer is a specifically designed unit with a fan circulating air and a temperature gauge to ensure the safety and comfort of the dog.
Both methods should be monitored closely as a dog could get over-heated if left for too long at a time in the dryer. However, most elderly dogs and many cats enjoy the comfort of a sleep in the warm surroundings and quite often it is difficult to get them out! In a salon situation, the cabinet dryer is best used in conjunction with a high velocity dryer to minimize drying time.
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