Does widdle-biddle Mr. Wiggles want a bathy-wathy? Probably not, but doggone it, he’s going to get one—that dog smell isn’t going anywhere. Before you toss around steak-dinner promises, read our tips for making pooch-pampering a (dog) walk in the park.
Bath time can be downright stressful for Fido. Most dogs don’t like being restrained, and many hate water more than the neighbor’s Calico. Teach your pup to associate baths with things he loves: Precede a dog wash with a romp in the yard, and end with a treat, a new toy or a long walk.
First, prep the tub: Place a rubber bath mat or a thick towel in the tub so your pup won’t slip, and lay another towel just outside the tub. A hand sprayer will make rinsing easier. Delta Faucet’s four-setting Palm Handshower can gently spritz a schnauzer or hose down a hound. Consult your veterinarian or groomer and choose a mild shampoo formulated for dogs. (Human shampoos can leave a dog’s delicate skin dry and itchy.) Finally, place extra towels within close reach.
In the backyard, gently brush your dog’s coat to detangle knots and remove loose hair—your plumber will thank you. When you’re ready, lead your dog to the tub, lift him in and reward him with a tasty treat.
Thoroughly wet your dog with lukewarm water, being careful to avoid spraying near his sensitive ears. Work in the shampoo, using your best massage technique to lather up all the smelly spots—neck, toes, belly, and yes, rump. Use a soft cloth to wipe his face. Rinse your furry friend well; even a little shampoo residue can make him itch.
Towel-dry your dog as much as possible while he’s still in the tub, then pull the curtain closed, and let the great shake begin. Rub him down with another towel, then let him loose. Reward him with praise, snuggles and a treat—he earned it!