How Often Should I Bathe My Dog?

  • by Andrea Nunez
How Often Should I Bathe My Dog?

Is there such a thing as too much dog-washing? Actually, yes! Read on to find out how often you should bathe your dog, and why.

How Often Should I Bathe My Dog?

Most dogs benefit from a good bath once every two or three months. Of course, the frequency of your dog’s washes will depend on the type of coat they have, and the lifestyle that they lead. Hairless dogs require bathing much more frequently, up to once a week, because they don’t benefit from the protective layer that a fur coat provides. Long-haired dogs may also require more frequent washing, as they may pick up more dirt when they’re out and about. If your dog is very active or has particularly oily fur, then they’ll benefit from more frequent bathing, perhaps every four to six weeks. 

The Advantages of Bathing a Dog

Bathing your dog regularly not only keeps bad odours at bay, but also gives owners an excellent opportunity to check for any lumps and bumps. While you’re giving your dog a wash, run your hands across their skin and fur to check for any abnormalities that you might want to consult your vet about. You can also take the chance to check them for common parasites such as fleas and worms.

If either you or your dog suffer from allergies, then regular washing is a great way to combat this. Many dogs can be allergic to various grasses and weeds that they come across on their walks. Regularly washing off these allergens can prevent them from experiencing nasty reactions.

If you suffer from pollen or fur allergies yourself, then giving your dog a bath often will limit your exposure to these allergens and help to keep your symptoms at bay.

How Do I Know When My Dog Needs a Bath?

The easiest way to tell if your pet is in need of a bath is to smell them! If they’re particularly muddy, smelly or you have a suspicion that they’ve rolled in something horrible, then it’s probably time to give them a bath. Be careful to avoid over-washing your pet, as this can lead to dry, irritated skin. 

Should I Bathe My Dog in Hot or Cold Water?

Dogs should be washed in water that isn’t too hot or too cold; a lukewarm temperature is best. This is because water that is too hot can irritate their skin, making it dry and itchy. Water that is too cold can cause a quick drop in body temperature, which will also be uncomfortable for your dog. When you bathe your dog, you should also make sure the room is a good temperature too, in order to make the experience as comfortable as possible for your beloved pet.

What Soap Can I Use to Wash My Dog?

Pet shampoo is the best soap to use to wash your dog. There are many brands available that will be tailored to your dog’s specific needs, and they can usually be bought over the counter in supermarkets and online, as well as directly from your vet.

If you don’t have dog shampoo to hand and need to give your pet a good scrub, you can use diluted dish soap, as long as it’s fragrance-free and doesn’t contain any harsh chemicals. You can also use baby shampoo if you have some, or baby wipes.

So, what’s the answer to the question: ‘Can I use normal shampoo on my dog?’ It’s a no. Human shampoo can be harmful to your pup, as it contains many more chemicals and additives than is required to keep them clean.

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