It’s likely not the first time you’ve heard yourself say that while trying to get your dog in the bath. But doggone it, that smell isn’t going anywhere and it’s got to be done!
Before you start to barter with treats galore, here are some tips for making bath time a doggone walk in the park:
1. Round up the Right Tools: Be sure to prep the tub area before bath time. Place a rubber bath mat or thick towel in the tub so your pup won’t slip, and lay another towel just outside the tub. A hand sprayer can make rinsing much easier, says the management at Delta Faucet. Their four-setting Palm handshower can gently spritz a schnauzer, or hose down a hound. Consult your veterinarian or groomer and choose a mild shampoo formulated for dogs. Finally, place extra towels within close reach.
2. Start with Persuasion: Bath time can be downright stressful for Fido. Most dogs don’t like being restrained, and many hate water more than the neighbour’s calico cat. Teach your pup to associate baths with things he loves. Precede the dog wash with a romp in the yard or end with a treat, new toy or long walk.
3. Give Him the Brush Off: In the backyard, gently brush your dog’s coat to detangle knots and remove loose hair. (Trust us, your plumber will thank you.) When you’re both ready, lead your dog to the tub, lift him in and reward him with a tasty treat.
4. Get Wet: Thoroughly soak your dog with lukewarm water, being careful to avoid spraying near his sensitive ears. Work in the shampoo, using a massage technique, and be sure to lather up the smelly spots – neck, toes, belly and yes, rump. Use a soft cloth to wipe his face. Rinse your furry friend well as even a little shampoo residue can make them itch.
5. Do the Shake: Towel-dry your dog as much as possible while he’s still in the tub, then pull the curtain closed, and let the shake begin. Rub him down with another towel, and then let him loose. Reward him with praise, snuggles and a treat – he earned it.