6 Most Important Tips for Bathing Your Dog

Many dogs love to take a bath, but there are just as many who don't like it at all. But bathing your buddy is a fact of living with a four-legged partner, and if you use these tips, every bath is going to be a little easier and more fun for the both of you.



Get Everything Ready

Bathing may be hectic enough, especially if your best friend isn't much fond of it. But you can minimize a lot of hassle if you get everything ready ahead of time and keep it all within arms reach.

On the floor, counter or table within reach, have things like the shampoo, towels, a brush and any other supply you need right at your finger tips. This will go a long way to limit any undue excitement or stress, and it will make it much easier to grab these things when you need them most.

3 Towel Method

Consider using 3 towels every time you give your dog a bath. The first towel goes into the tub so that your dog will always have traction. A slipping and sliding dog can cause panic and accidents, so always make sure the bottom of the tub has a sure footed towel surface.

The second towel is your shake towel. Whenever it looks like your dog is going to shake, place the shake towel over their back. This will limit water getting all over the place and will make for a much friendlier time in the tub.

The 3rd towel is for drying, so make sure it is always kept directly on hand as soon as your pooch is finished.


Before they get into the tub, give them a complete and thorough brushing. You may ask why this is necessary, since your dog is going to be in the tub anyway. But by brushing them out first, you'll get rid of a lot of excess hair that may clog the drain, and particularly for dogs that don't shed, you'll remove all of the matting and the knots in the hair, making the coat much easier to clean and shampoo. If you find a matted area that won't brush out, now is the time to cut it off because once in contact with water, the matting will be almost impossible to remove.

Use a Doggie Shampoo

It may be tempting to use a regular people shampoo on your dog, but a genuine doggie shampoo is a better option. They are formulated to work best on pet hair, they won't burn eyes if a few errant suds touch them, and they are generally infused with emollients to make a shiny and glistening coat.

The best doggie shampoos are those that are made out of organic ingredients. And while any shampoo that is formulated for dogs will work, an organic shampoo assures you that you won't be subjecting your pet to any unneeded or unwanted chemicals that may adversely react with their skin or their hair. 

Add Water Gently

Using a pitcher or a small bucket to pour water over your dog is the best way to keep them calm. A blasting shower or a high-pressure hose or spigot may badly frighten your pet and they may never want to take a bath again.

Always be gentle and use only warm, not hot or cold, water when bathing, shampooing and rinsing. Always avoid getting water in the eyes, the nose or the ears. You can wash these areas, but do so by adding water with your hands or fingers, massaging softly and rinsing by using the same technique.

Take Your Time

Giving your dog a bath should never be treated as a speed contest. The more time you take the calmer your dog will be and the better the experience it will be for both of you. After all, you are bathing your companion out of love, no matter what they have rolled in, so make sure to take your time and enjoy the time together.

If you use these 6 tips when it's time to bathe your dog, and experts say once every 3 months is a good schedule to keep on average, you and your pet will have some quality time together, with a little less hassle, and a little bit of fun too!

About the Author

Mary Nielsen is a passionate dog lover, blogger and part-time music teacher. She started MySweetPuppy.net to share her ups and downs of being a pet parent to a bunch of adorable mutts. When she is not playing with them or teaching, you can find her experimenting in the kitchen.