How Often Should You Bathe Your Dog? Tips and Recommended Products


Ever wonder how often you should bathe your dog? Or how to bathe them or what products to use?

Bathe your dog about once a month or every four weeks. Bathing your dog removes pathogens and germs, maintains healthy hair and skin, as well as helps avoid unpleasant odors. Do not bathe your dog too frequently though as it will remove natural oils that contribute to healthy skin and a shiny coat.

Oliie the bulldog sitting on the couch

Bathing your dog once a month does the following:

1. Removes the pathogens and germs

If you stick to a monthly bathing cycle, you can be sure to eliminate bacteria and pathogens from your dog’s skin. If your dog spends lots of time outdoors, you might need to bathe them more frequently. Be careful about the frequency if your dog has sensitive skin.

2. Maintains the moisture in the skin of the dog

If you bathe your dog frequently, the moisture content of his/her skin will reduce considerably, which can lead to a lot of issues like itching, inflammation, and infections. That is why it’s usually best to bathe your dog no more than once a month

Pro tip: Use a shampoo that moisturizes the skin to ensure proper skin hydration.

3. Helps avoid odors

Dogs develop an odor only after a few weeks, which is why it’s important to bathe your dog at least once a month. This should generally keep the odor away, although some dogs might require more frequent bathing if they start to smell sooner.

4. Prevents skin damage

No matter which shampoo you choose, it is bound to have some impact on your dog’s skin. If you bathe your dog frequently, it can result in skin damage. It is especially true in dogs with sensitive skin, like bulldogs. That is why when you stick to a bathing frequency of just once a month, you can help prevent skin damage.

While once a month might seem like a low frequency to you, it is ideal for most dogs. In some instances, your vet might advise you to increase the bathing frequency of your dog, so it’s always best to consult with your vet on the best bathing schedule for your dog.

What are the steps to properly bathe your dog?

Before we go into the step-by-step guide to bathing, it is essential to gather all the supplies you will need for a dog bath. These include:

• Dog shampoo

• Dog conditioner

• Soft towel

• Brush

• Tub/bathing area

Instructions for bathing your dog

1. You should first start by brushing your dog. This will remove excess dead hair. Ensure that you brush your dog gently to avoid causing them any pain when detangling their hair.

2. Wet the dog with warm water. Make sure that the water does not go into the ears of the dog. A detachable shower head or hose can be helpful.

3. Apply some shampoo on the dog to generate enough lather. The thicker the dog’s fur, the more shampoo you’ll need to apply.

English bulldog stretching
English bulldog stretching

4. Refer to the instructions on the shampoo to determine how long you should leave the shampoo on before rinsing it off.

5. After the shampoo has been on your dog for the instructed amount of time wash, it off with warm water. Again, make sure that the water does not go into the ears of the dog as that could lead to ear infections.

6. Apply conditioner and let it soak into your dog’s fur for the designated amount of time before washing it off.

7. Let your dog shake-off excessive water before drying him/mer off with a towel.

As you can see, the procedure for giving your dog a bath is relatively simple and easy.

4 Tips for bathing a dog that hates bath time

Some dogs absolutely hate and despise bath time. Unfortunately, if your dog really hates bath time then no amount of treats will likely convince your dog otherwise. Below are four tips to help ease the struggle that you might experience when bathing a pooch that hates baths.

1. Make sure you use warm water

Dogs often panic when they touch cold water, so it is always advisable to use warm water to prevent any puppy panic attacks.

2. Make sure your dog can stand stably

When you place the dog in a bathtub or a regular tub, the dog will struggle to stand, as the surface might be slippery. This can lead to additional anxiety for the dog. To help ease your dog’s discomfort, consider using an anti-slip mat or simply lay a towel in the tub or bathing area. It will allow your dog to feel more stable, which might calm him or her down more.

3. Use water sparingly

Many dogs do not like to be doused in water, so use water sparingly to make your dog less upset. You can even consider using a damp cloth to wet the dog.

4. Use a spray attachment

Avoid using a strong spay when wetting your dog. This is where a spraying attachment might come handy. When you use a spraying attachment, the water flow is generally not as strong, and you might have more control with the strength of the spray. So you can adjust the attachment accordingly when you find the right level that your dog finds most comfortable.

What should you do if your dog has sensitive skin?

Many dogs have sensitive skin. Here are some things to keep in mind when bathing dogs with sensitive skin:

1. Choose the right shampoo: Choosing a hypoallergenic shampoo that is gentle on your dog’s skin can help in preventing uncomfortable reactions. The shampoo should not contain any harmful chemicals. Test out the shampoo on a small area of your dog’s skin to make sure he or she doesn’t have any reactions too, before bathing him or her with it.

2. Choose the right conditioner: A conditioner is as important as shampoo, and can help to relax your dog’s skin, while making it shiny and smooth. Make sure you buy a hypoallergenic conditioner. As with the shampoo, it’s best to test out the conditioner on a small section of your dog’s fur, before rubbing it all over their bodies, to avoid any bad reactions to it.

5 recommended dog shampoos

Dog shampoo is one of the essential products you need for bathing your dog, and it can sometimes be overwhelming to decide the right shampoo for your dog. Lucky for you, we have shortlisted a few that you can choose from! Here are our top five dog shampoos:

1. Pro Pet Works Oatmeal Pet Wash: This dual shampoo and conditioner is great for dogs with sensitive skin. It contains soothing oatmeal, aloe, almond oil, which are not only gentle on your dog’s skin and fur, but also leave your dog smelling fresh. These ingredients are especially soothing for dogs that have sensitive, itchy, or dry skin. It is also rich in vitamins A, D, and E. The all-natural ingredients ensure that you will not have to worry about any side effects. It is made of natural ingredients that are biodegradable, and contain no alcohol or toxins, making it one of our favorite “soapless shampoos” out there!

2. Pet Pleasant Lavender Oatmeal Pet Shampoo: Another oatmeal shampoo! This is especially made for pups with sensitive skins. The lavender is a nice bonus, giving your dog a nice, laundry-fresh odor. With ingredients like jojoba and essential oils, it helps to soothe and soften your dog’s skin. The all-natural ingredients will ensure that your dog is cleansed without any contact with harmful substances.

3. Wahl Dry Skin & Itch Relief Pet Shampoo: If you want the salon treatment, then look no further than Wahl’s oatmeal concentrate. With their Oatmeal formula and coconut lime scent, you can be sure that your dog will come out smelling nice and fresh. Since its a concentrate, you only need to use a little at a time, making this shampoo last a lot longer than competitor brands. It is suitable for dogs with dry and itchy skin and helps moisturize your dog’s skin with it’s pH-balanced formula.

4. Nature’s Miracle Skin & Coat Supreme Odor Control: This is a great option for dog’s with sensitive skin: it is soapless, alcohol-free, paraben-free, and free of any dyes. It consists of natural cocoa, which can cleanse as well as condition your dog’s coat. The hint of honey and sage will make sure your dog comes out smelling, well, delicious really!

5 FURminator deShedding Ultra Premium Dog Shampoo: Looking for a shampoo to reduce shedding? Then this shampoo might be right for your dog! It promotes healthy skin and consists of nutrients like omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. It contains calendula and papaya extract, so your dog can smell like a tropical paradise after his or her bath. It is free of chemicals, so is gentle on your dog’s skin.

We hope this post answers all the dog-bathing questions you have!

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