Helping Your Dog Conquer the Fear of Bath Time

Everyone knows that cats are supposed to hate water, but what are you supposed to do when your dirt-loving dog is afraid of a little bath? It can be very difficult to bathe a frightened dog, and DryPet knows the frustration associated with a dirty dog who hates bathes. So, we have some tips for owners of bath-phobic dogs.

Bathe When Tired

Try to do bath time after a long walk or an hour of playtime at the dog park. Exercise will make your dog hot, which makes him or her more likely to enjoy a little cool water. A tired dog is often more relaxed and tries to fight bath time less, so a tired dog may be a little easier for you to bathe.

Give it Time

Don’t expect to give your dog a “quick bath.” If your dog exhibits fear or anxiety during a bath, go slowly. Let your dog explore the area and get used to the sound of the water. Start with only wetting your dog’s toes. Slowly wet your dog’s back and underside as gently as possible.

Don’t pour water on your dog’s face, as this is likely to contribute to the fear. For your dog’s face, wet a wash cloth and gently wipe it over the entire face.

As you shampoo and condition your dog, give them a bit of a massage. Everyone loves relaxing massages, right?! When you are done, gently rinse out all of the product while avoiding your pet’s face again.

Prevent Slippage

Remember when you almost fell in the shower last week? Thought so! Dogs usually aren’t too fond of slippery surfaces, and the bath tub is one giant slippery surface. A simple bath mat can prevent your pooch from slipping all over the tub, which may help loosen him up during bath time.

Use Comfortable Water

Comfort is subjective to each person or dog, but using lukewarm water prevents your dog from being too cold or hot during bath time. Remember to check on the water as you go. It may start to get too cold or hot while you are using it, and it may need to be turned up or down to stay comfortable for your dog.

Hand Out Treats

When you are trying to give your dog a bath, use treats to make the experience more enjoyable. Reward your dog for getting in the tub, letting you clean his face, and staying still. Treats will help your dog associate the tub with a happier experience.

Buy Water Toys

Try to make bath time as fun as possible for your dog by buying water toys to play with in the tub. While there isn’t much room, you can let your pup tear into the toys while you work on shampooing and conditioning.

Do A Gentle Dry

Having a wet dog running through your home isn’t ideal, and getting your dog dry may be the hardest part of bath time. Think about how you dry your dog. Are you using a loud, hot blow dryer? Are you rough with a towel? If so, your dog probably dreads being dried off after bath time.

Instead, invest in a DryPet towel. The DryPet towel not only allows you to get your dog dry without being rough, but it also helps you do it quickly. The ultra-absorbent towel can cut your drying time in half, and your dog will be much happier with the results.

If your dog still fears a bath, consider speaking to your veterinarian about finding ways to deal with your dog’s anxiety and fear.