Although you might read several guides online about how to wash a dog with a makeshift shampoo, a lot of the time these are only useful as a last resort when you are desperate to wash a muddy dog and don’t have a quality product to hand. The truth is, shampoo needs to have a certain pH balance to treat their skin and fur without damaging its natural nutrients. Get this wrong and you can end up causing a lot of damage and discomfort. Let’s take a look at some of the reasons why a dog shampoo is a necessity.
So, How Often?
Before you consider how often you should know that every breed needs to be washed at various amounts. For example, the hair type is going to be one of the main considerations. If you have a long-haired dog, it is more likely to trap dirt than a short-haired so you will need bathing more often.
Also, if they play outside a lot or if you have a large yard for them to roll around in then this is going to mean they need more frequent bathing than a dog kept on the lead. Most experts recommend bathing a dog every couple of months as a minimum although there is nothing wrong with bathing them every other week if you have a gentle dog shampoo.
Some dogs have more sensitive skin than others which is where you might consider washing them monthly instead of twice a month.
Is Dog Shampoo Necessary?
The following are some of the best reasons to use a quality dog shampoo.
Your Dog Will Look Their Best
There is no reason why a dog’s coat should look dull and lifeless, a show dog doesn’t have to be the only kind that has a great coat. When you are done, your dog will have a natural shine that is not possible to replicate with other products.
An Unwashed Pooch Is A Smelly One
That doggy smell never truly goes and when it is subtle, it can be pleasant when you play and cuddle your dog. Over time this will become stronger until it gets to the point where the whole house smells like a wet dog. Wash your dog with a quality shampoo so the pong doesn’t hit you when you walk through the door.
Pet Shampoos Have Never Been Better
Another reason to use a dog shampoo is that the products themselves have never been so high in quality. The ingredients can be sourced from quality places and combine to give their coat everything it needs for more than a healthy shine.
Get Rid Of Fleas and Ticks
Although some dog shampoos are better at this than others, it is a good chance to check for these pests. Some brands of dog shampoo contain ingredients that repel fleas such as lavender or lemongrass so this is another good reason to use a quality product.
They Are Kind On Eyes
These specific types of shampoo have been designed to be kind in some of the most sensitive areas of a dog, including the eyes. This will ensure their comfort should any find its way in and won’t sting in the same way as a regular shampoo might.
Something For All Hair Types
One of the main benefits of using a quality dog shampoo is that there are plenty to choose from. This means if your dog suffers from itchy skin, oily skin, has fleas and ticks, flaky skin, a long coat, tangles, or whatever else, there is a dog shampoo to help.
Two In One Product
Some dog shampoos double up as a conditioner which can reduce the time it takes to bath your dog. These are also ideal for unknotting tangles and keep their coat smooth. Otherwise, you can pick up a dog conditioner and some can be left on as well as the regular ones that need to be rinsed.
Tips For Bathing A Dog
Make sure you have everything to hand before you gather your pooch to the bath. You will need your dog shampoo and towels at the ready. It might be a good idea to cover more of the floor than usual as your bath mat might not be sufficient enough to collect all the water from a splashing and shaking dog.
This is a step that a lot of people neglect but by removing the tangles before, it makes for a much smoother clean. The best dog brushes are easy on a dog’s skin and can even dispose of the collected hair with the press of a button for hands-free removal.
Make Him Comfortable
Bath time can be a scary time for some dogs where you can see your beloved pooch shaking. This can be upsetting for all so it is always a good idea to make an effort to ensure their comfort. A lot of people use a lick pad that can attach to the wall as you cover it with peanut butter to keep the dog occupied.
Get The Right Temp
Always check the temperature of the water before you start to rinse your dog. Some might like a slightly warmer temperature but remember that when it is too hot, water can easily scold a dog’s skin.
A good approach is to start at the bottom and work your way up from the feet, then the tail to the head for applying shampoo. After this, start rinsing at the head and work backward.
It will reduce the likelihood of anything getting in your dog’s eyes and is the best way to ensure their comfort.
Be Ready For The Aftermath
When you are done, quickly throw the towel on your dog’s back. When they shake, this will stop the cast-offs from flying around the bathroom. Use it to gently rub some of the excesses away and then either leave them to dry off or use a blow dryer if they will sit.
Try And Make It A Positive Experience
Some dogs will happily wag their tail at the first sign of a bath but this is not always the case. To make it more enjoyable, try giving them plenty of encouragement and rubs, use a lick pad or end it with a treat. With regular bathing, many dogs get used to the experience so it is less traumatic than when it is left for months between baths.