The frequency of dog washing has many factors, including breed and activities. However rule of thumb is: if your dog smells bad or is scratching frequently, it’s probably time for a bath. Read on for the easiest way to wash your dog.
You will need: bucket or basin, towels, hose, dog shampoo and a willing volunteer if possible.
Lay these out so they are close but not in the way.
Get the dog
Brush the dog’s coat. Inspect for any skin/coat/health issues.
If your dog is scratching, decide if it is from parasites, allergies, or simple skin irritation. Pick out a good flea or problem specific shampoo at a pet store or retail store. Get a shampoo that says “Will not sting eyes”. Some general dog shampoos are formulated with oatmeal to help reduce general irritation. (If scratching is a big problem with your dog, changing her food may help. Look for a food that says something to the effect of “Good for Skin & Coat”. )
Get your dog’s coat very wet and apply the shampoo. Do this from the top down, first for her back, then gently scrubbing down to the tail and below, her rear legs, belly and chest, and then her neck. Make sure to rub shampoo into all creases, or rolls, like under front legs and neck.
Wash head and face. Get the top of the dog’s head wet, then add shampoo a little at a time and wash her head, face, below her eyes, her jowls/whiskers, and under the chin. Use very warm water, and take time to re-rub the entire facial area 2-3 times, since this is an area where eye secretions and food can generate much of a dog’s odor.
Keep the shampoo on your dog for as long as the bottle calls for.
Rinse your dog until the water from her fur runs clear, and then rinse one more time. This is very important, especially for dogs with skin problems.
Towel her off. Make sure you dry the inside of her ears also. In the winter, or for small dogs almost all the time, lay a dry towel on the floor and use a hair dryer and dog brush to dry and brush your dog.
Now give your dog a treat…. She deserves it!
For more information on pet grooming, go to http://grooming.petsmart.com