You may love a bath, but your dog probably won’t! So let’s take a look at how to bathe a dog at home, especially if your dog hates baths!

Are you, like me, the owner of a dog who loves water but hates baths? Part of owning a dog is to be responsible and take care of their bathing needs on a regular basis.

Not only is this a step that ensures your pet looks great, but it also helps you ensure that your dog stays in tip top shape as well. Plus, it helps keep your furniture clean(er)!

Regular bathing for your pet serves as the perfect time for you to make certain that their ears, teeth, eyes, and nose are all in good health.  Keep reading to find out more about how to bathe a dog at home.

How to Bathe a Dog at Home

What Is The Puppy First Bath Age?

Your first dog may be a young puppy. So you may wonder if you can bath them young. For best results when bathing your pets, you will want to start this process at an early age. When you first bring a puppy into your home you can even pretend to go through the motions of bathing your pet until you feel comfortable with giving him his first bath.

You will want to make sure you give him plenty of time to get used to his new home and you, his new owner, before attempting a bath or grooming. When puppies learn about bathing at a young age, they tend to feel comfortable with the entire process all through their adult life.

When you are considering the age for puppies first bath, don’t be tempted to rush it. You do not want your new puppy to develop a fear of baths. That will make your life with your dog all the more difficult. Decide on the age of puppies first bath and then introduce them to the bath gently.

Start without water, but just put your puppy where you think you will bathe them. Then move up to washing just their feet. When they are used to that you can slowly progress. What age for puppies first bath? When you feel comfortable doing it without making your puppy scared of water.

How Do You Bathe a Dog That Hates Baths?

There are, however, some dogs that hate to be bathed no matter how you approach this necessary task. I’m lucky enough to have a dog just like this! Plus, she loves to play in the mud. A great combination! So you need to learn how to bathe a dog afraid of water.

If your pet happens to be an especially troublesome bather, you may want to consider leaving this job to a professional groomer. This is often the best option to ensure no accidental harm comes to you or your pet.

However, it is still worth learning how to bathe a dog at home, just in case you really need to bath your dog. In case of a real bad smell emergency.

I found with my dog that it isn’t that she hates baths so much as she hates her head being washed. So I bath just her body about 90% of the time and just do her head when I really need to.

She is now really good at standing still for her bath. As long as you stay away from her head!

If you are worrying about how to bathe an anxious dog try and work out why your dog is anxious. Does she hate a bath or just having something specific washed? Like her face, feet or tail for example. Then you can bathe your dog at home working within your constraints.

How to bathe a dog at home - What Is The Puppy First Bath Age

Supplies for Bathing Your Dog

The skin of most dogs is fairly sensitive, which means it is best not to use any type of harsh shampoos. Depending on your pet, you may even want to use baby shampoo when you are bathing the head, neck, ears, and around the eyes. There are several different varieties of dog shampoo that you can choose from for bathing your pets. If fleas are a problem, try adding a few drops of pine oil to the shampoo, as they work great for killing adult fleas.

I use either a bar of soap or a liquid wash. For a sort of light clean I use the soap but for a heavy duty bath we use the liquid.

This is the dog soap bar that I use and I absolutely love it. It lathers really well and smells lovely. As a bonus, it doesn’t come in a plastic wrapper.

I do use the liquid wash often, especially for just a quick wash. Most days, I tend to wash Poppy’s dirty feet and just put water and shampoo into the sink and this works well. As a bonus, I love the smell of this and it makes her coat really soft.

We use so much of it that I quickly bought a second bottle.

Although Poppy loves the water, in every weather, she hates having a bath.

As it was so warm here in the UK for parts of last summer, I thought she would like a paddling pool that could double as a bath. Silly me.  She didn’t like it and was not fool enough to jump in though she will race through when her ball is thrown into the water.

So I did start using it as a bath (outside) which works quite well and keeps the kitchen dry!  This is the one we bought which is easy enough to setup and empty.

Prepare Your Dog Before a Bath

Don’t just pick up your dog and throw them in the bath, because that won’t end well for anybody! Try giving your dog a treat or a toy before you show them the bath. Don’t be stressed as you will stress your dog too. Brush or comb their hair first to remove any excess hair. I use this great grooming tool.

How to Bathe a Dog Step by Step

You should always begin with your dog’s head when it’s time for a bath. Rather than pouring shampoo directly onto their coat, it is best to first pour the shampoo into your hands, and then carefully rub it into his coat. This helps to ensure that none of the shampoo accidentally gets into his eyes, which can cause inflammation and be very painful.

How to Bathe a Dog at Home - Head to Tail

After you have finished bathing your dog’s head, then you will want to work from the neck towards the tail of your dog. It is important to pay special attention that you reach the underside of your pet, as this is an area that is harder to get to.

If you bath your dog once every few weeks or so as they grow up, it won’t take them long to start looking forward to getting their coat and skin massaged. Just as a massage feels great to most humans, this is also true of your pets.

When the bathing process is complete, it is important to dry your pet off thoroughly. Professional dog groomers normally use doggy dryers. Most of us don’t have that luxury. If you don’t have a dryer that is specifically designed to dry dog’s hair, just use a few thick towels. Microfibre ones are a good choice though. Be careful as water tends to accumulate on and in the ears, so pay close attention that they are dried thoroughly.

Yes your dog will shake. I read that covering the dogs head, so they can’t see, prevents them shaking. This is what I do with Poppy, and it does seem to work. I also dry her with one of these amazing microfibre towels.

And now you know how to bathe a dog at home. Give it a try a few times. You will get better and your dog will put up with it more, if they don’t love it. Sticking with the hygiene of your dog, don’t forget to regularly clean your dog’s teeth.

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