Click here to learn more.
A. Your dog isn’t alone in despising baths. Bath time often sparks an unwanted game of chase, with the human sprinting and diving after the pooch just to bring him to the tub. Once he's caught, the chase isn't over; it’s a constant struggle to prevent the pup from fleeing. Although making bath time one of your dog's favorite things to do may not be realistic, you can help make baths more tolerable — for you and for him.
Let your dog know it’s bath time by using a certain cue, such as “bath.” By associating a certain word with his bath, you help take away any surprise that a bath is coming. Simply by alleviating his fear of the unknown, you can help your dog begin to relax. You can also use treats to coax your dog to you when you need to catch him for the bath. Avoid chasing after your dog, though; this game of chase can be fun for your dog and may reinforce the behavior of running away from you.
Bath time should always be paired with something your dog enjoys. I use a snack jar in my bathroom when bathing my pugs, so I can reward calm behavior of all four feet in the tub. I also give them a long-lasting toy or chew after their bath, such as a Greenie, or a food puzzle that makes the bath more tolerable because they grow to expect a fruitful reward when it’s over.
Use warm water, which is less likely than cold water to make a dog panic. Place an anti-skid mat or a towel on the bottom of your tub. Many dogs struggle in the bath because their feet slip when they can’t gain traction. You can also use a grooming tether or a nylon collar and leash to keep better control of your pet while he's in the bath — just keep a watchful eye to reduce the rick of choking or other injury.
Don't douse your dog with running water; this will make him nervous. Use a washcloth to wash your dog's face — it's less frightening than running water splashing over his snout. Hold your dog's nose and chin up at an angle when running water over his neck and the top of his head; his nose should be the highest point. This prevents the water from running down into his nose or eyes.
Use a pet shower sprayer attachment, such as the Bamboo Pet Deluxe Pet Shower Sprayer, to bathe your pooch. This nifty gadget allows you to bring the water to your dog with the long hose and spray attachment; water flow on the sprayers can also be adjusted to the pressure that fits your dog’s comfort level. It’s less terrifying for a dog to have water flowing from a source that can be brought to the direct area where he is already standing in the bath than to be forced into running water under the faucet or the shower sprayer.
With these tips, bath time should be a more relaxed experience for both you and your dog.
Like this article? Have a point of view to share? Let us know!
Thank you for subscribing to Petwire. Look for the latest newsletter each Wednesday.
Nindiri, a 7-year-old jaguar, proudly
carried her little bundle into her den to
meet the public at the San Diego…
Rescuers are using drones to locate and
help some of the Texas city’s estimated one million homeless dogs.
Before you buy chicks or ducklings for
your kids' Easter baskets, make sure you
know what you're getting yourself…
Dr. Marty Becker knows from experience
that it's hard to adjust to children leaving
home and taking family pets…
It’s more than just cute when your kitty
naps in a box — it’s an instinctive
behavior that’s hardwired in her…
The talented Sporting Group dogs will
impress you with their hunting skills and
win you over with their…
Our expert explains why the old formula
that one year of a dog's life equals seven
years of human life isn’t…
Want to find out how well your cat or dog is digesting his food? Well, our vet says the proof is in your pet's poop.
The active and playful Devon Rex’s high cheekbones and slender build make her look like a top feline model.
If the video doesn't start playing momentarily,
please install the latest version of Flash.
Thank you for subscribing.