A Quick Guide to Mess-Free Dog Bathing

dog bathing - french bulldog puppy in wooden tub with bubblesAside from cutting down on smell, bathing your dog can be beneficial in a number of ways. For some pups, you may want to bathe them as frequently as once a week. For others, once a week is too often and will cause skin irritation, so you need to figure out what’s right for your dog.

Bathing your pup can cut down on their allergies and yours. It can also help his skin infections heal and reduce their itching and scratching.

Bathing your dog can be a messy proposition. Maybe you dread the task or try to avoid it altogether. It’s good for you both, and if you are deliberate and prepared, you can find a way that doesn’t involve cleaning the entire bathroom afterward.

Here are a few tips for mess-free dog bathing:

Prepare Well & Set Up Supplies

The whole procedure will go more smoothly, for both you and your pup, if you’re prepared and have all your supplies ready.

Brush your dog beforehand and gently cut out matted pieces that can’t be combed out. You don’t want the tangles to get wet–this doesn’t make them easier to get rid of.

Make sure you have everything you need right where you’ll need it. This means getting all the towels and the doggie shampoo set up beforehand. Don’t forget, dog shampoo is specifically designed for their skin, so baby shampoo won’t cut it.

Water in the ears is not fun, so put a piece of cotton in each of your dog’s ears. Don’t push it in too deep, and make a note to remove the cotton after the bath is over.

Preventing Messy Dog Bathing

Make sure to block the drain using a piece of steel wool or a drain cover before beginning. Depending on how much your pup sheds, there will be lots of free-floating hair in that bath. You don’t want it clogging your pipes!

Bribe your dog to behave. Have some treats on hand so that your pup isn’t nervous about their bath.

Before you fill the tub, line the floor with a towel so that your dog has something to stand on. When they’re slip-sliding around, they are more likely to get upset as well as make a mess.

Close the bathroom door to create a calm setting and to ensure there are no disruptions. Closing the door also prevents your pup from bolting, and making a wet mess in your living space when the bath is over.

Scrub your dog gently with the shampoo, and then rinse thoroughly. Afterward, make sure they are dry. In addition to being better for your pup’s health by preventing rashes, it will protect the rest of your house from damage.

You can use a towel to dry your dog, but use gentle motions to avoid irritating their skin. You may also want to try a blow dryer, if the noise doesn’t scare them too much. A pet dryer–which blows air on a just-bathed dog with minimal noise– is another option.

Another great tip is all about pup spin-dry prevention. When your dog has just come out of the bath and you can see them thinking about doing an epic full-body shake, gently hold their muzzle.

Nobody likes being in the dog bath splash zone. A shake starts from the head and moves down the torso, so if you hold their head, they won’t be able to do it.