A common question from pet owner is, how often or after how many days shall I bathe the dog? Well, that’s depends, whether its a pup, adult or senior dog and whether he/she has fleas/ticks. It’s well said that dogs are man’s best friend. They readily become part of the family and mingles and bonds with great affection and love. More and more people are now adopting these fury friends and keeping them as pets in their home for a great time ahead. But along with all the fun and fondness comes a great duty to take care of the dogs and keep them healthy, active and clean.
Grooming is an essential part in petting a dog. Along with training and keeping them fit, bathing becomes a humongous task for these fur balls. Each breed comes with varied hair length and to keeping these busy bodies clean and sparkling is quite a task for their keepers. While there are salons and help at hand in almost every city now, dog owners simply love to bathe their dogs on their own.
Well, a dog surely does not need bathing everyday or very frequently like humans but these hairy pets get real stinky if not bathed properly and on time which can become quite a nuisance if left that way. Tendency of getting fleas is very high amongst these canines and improper bathing can lead to hygiene issues and health hazards for the entire family. Many are worried the harsh chemicals which dog shampoos contain that can strip off the natural silky sheen from their friend’s fur and make it brittle and lifeless while others worry about bacterial and fungal infections which can cause health hazards. Thus it becomes extremely important for bathing dogs on time and that too in a proper way. But the biggest question that comes to mind is how often?
Things to consider before washing your dog
There are several factors which are taken into consideration when scheduling a bath for your canine friend. While a bath not more than once a week is the thumb rule, it is always wiser to take other factors into consideration before bathing and cleaning them. Let’s take a look at the general factors which are easy to fix on:
Coat texture & hair length: Breed of the dog is an important deciding factor for bathing. While coarse hair repels dirt, finer silkier hair attracts dirt easily. Also longer hair length attracts more grime and dirt than shorter trimmed hair.
Activity level: Whether your dog is an outdoor or indoor dog will decide its bathing time regardless of its breed. Outdoor and more active dogs require more frequent cleaning than indoor ones as they are exposed to mud, pollution and other infections from the open air and require thorough cleaning if play get really messy.
Allergies and skin conditions: Many dogs have sensitive skin and are often prone to allergies and rashes. Their skin absorbs allergens from the environment which causes itching and can lead to major skin problems. These dogs need more cleaning to keep allergies at bay!
How frequently shall I Bathe my Dog?
Now that we have discussed about the general deciding factors its time to take a quick look on the age of the dog. No matter which breed, level of activity or allergy prone a dog is, bathing schedule heavily depends on the age of the dog or whether the dog has fleas or not. Depending on these two factors let’s get down to the basic facts for our fury love:
- Puppies: This energy ball is always seen rolling on the floor, playing in the mud and getting everything messed up. The little adorable pups have fine hair and are more prone to dirt, grime and stepping on poop. Bathing them are more like bathing a baby and can be quite a challenge. Generally frequent bathing is not required as the oil balance and micro bacteria world is disrupted through frequent washes. A three month old pup can be bathed twice a month and a six month old once a month. If the fur gets spots due to food or other stains, it can be wiped off using a wet clean cloth.
- Adult dogs: The pup transforms its baby hair between 6-12 months and hair becomes coarse and longer. As per pet doctor, generally once a month is recommended by most vets for bathing these young adults, but bathing schedule might vary depending on a number of environmental factors discussed earlier. Frequency is best not exceeded once a week.
- Senior dogs: Senior dogs are less active and more indoors with brittle hair cuticles. Their skin become itchy, irritated develop pain spots which need thorough yet careful relaxed cleaning in order to avoid breakage, drying and bald spots. A senior dog can be bathed once in every month (if very senior dog, above 13 years, then once in every 50 days) for overall cleanliness. The fur needs thorough drying as the moisture trapped can be quite chilling for an aging dog. Dry shampoos are high recommended for these wise canines.
- For Dog with Flea: Dogs with flea can be extremely itchy and can be havoc in the house. While a merge amount of fleas stay on the dog, majority is found in the environment. Borax or specially medicated shampoos are a good option on the dog as well as its bedding and furniture to kill the fleas. Once a month is recommended but bathing is required more often if itching is observed even after the wash.
While for normal bathing schedule, a good dog shampoo with moisturizer or a human baby shampoo is recommended, cleaning more than often demands dry shampoos or shampoos without soap and more moisturizer. Flea treatment includes specialized shampoos recommended by vets. Also read common reasons of diarrhea in dogs here.
While these are quick tips to provide a rough guideline on the bathing schedule of your beloved dog, it is best advisable to consult your vet for further suggestions and recommendations of shampoos and cleaning products after careful examination of your dog. Keep worries at bay and have a good time bathing your beloved dog!