If you’ve ever had a toddler, then you know bath time can either be a relaxing and pleasant experience or an exhibition of pure chaos. Your child might have enjoyed soaking in the water and bubbles to get clean. Or they might have screamed and spit and fought until you were exhausted. Puppy bath time can be very similar.
Some will take to the bath, looking forward to it. Others, not really. They may bound up the stairs and beat you into the bathroom, or you may spend a good portion of your time looking high and low for them.
But whichever it is, your puppy is going to need a bath. It is essential to their health and well-being.
The benefits of a bath
Your vet is going to be an excellent resource to determine how frequently you need to bathe your puppy. Because puppies do not self-regulate their internal body temperatures as well as adult dogs, you might not want to give your puppy his first bath until he’s about eight weeks old. If he gets muddy or gets dirt caked into his coat, you can use a wet, warm cloth to clean him up.
Perhaps the greatest benefit is the removal of dirt and odor. If he plays outside at all, he’s going to get into something that you do not want stuck to him. Try to avoid getting shampoo into his eyes, nose, and ears.
Bathing will give your dog a softer coat. Bathing will reduce shedding, which will help limit any allergies anyone in your household may have. Most people that are allergic to dogs are actually sensitive to their dander and not their fur. Bathing will help keep your puppy’s skin moisturized and limit dander.
You can also use this time to check on the general health of your puppy. While he is enjoying his bath, you can check his paws, skin, eyes, ears, and body for any redness or abnormalities.
Tools of the trade
You will need a table where you can set all your supplies within easy reach. It goes without saying that you will need a towel—not just for him, but maybe for you as well. A good brush will facilitate some deep scrubbing.
Choose a good dog shampoo for the health of his skin. And you’re going to need a place in which to bathe him. It is best to have something he can’t step out of easily. It needs to be deep enough to hold sufficient water.
Here’s the fun part: maybe a treat. Some dogs that do not particularly like baths can be distracted by smearing some peanut butter on the wall. It will free you up for the task at hand.
How often does our dog need a puppy bath?
Your puppy does not need a bath every night. Once a month is a good general principal. However, this is going to depend on your puppy and his breed. Some dogs with water-resistant coats may need less, while some dogs may need a puppy bath as much as once a week.
Talk with your vet, and she will be able to give you a schedule based on your dog’s specific needs. Just remember, it may be relaxing or stressful, but it needs to be done.