Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Bathing your dog: It doesn't have to be such an ordeal

Sensi and I prepare for his bath
Long time readers of this blog are well aware of my dog's allergy issues.
This is pertinent because an allergic dog needs lots of medicated baths.
At one point in Sensi's life, we were bathing him twice a week per veterinarian instructions.
We don't have to do it so often anymore, but it is important this time of the year to make sure he stays clean.
In addition to food allergies, Sensi also has some seasonal allergies.
Mold, pollen and all those outdoor allergens build up on Sensi's skin. You could literally see how much better my dog felt after his bath Sunday, even if he hated the bath all the same.
Anyhow, all this bathing we've done over his lifetime has made us old pros at the bathing routine.

Bathing tips: Part I — Make getting into the bath more comfortable!
At one point, Sensi started refusing to get into the bathtub. This is when I draped a towel over the ledge and voila! He was back in.
Nowadays, there's no picking him up and lifting him in, no pulling or prodding of any kind. Just a simple "Get in the tub, Sensi" and he does.
Don't believe me? Well, that's why I taped it.

Bathing tips: Part II — Areas to clean well, areas to avoid all together
Do you squirt water in your ears to get them clean? Didn't think so, so don't do it to your dog.
The face is another big no-no for us. I learned long ago that if you leave the dog's face alone, he's much less inclined to shake the water off before the appropriate time.
Toes, armpits and the butt, on the other hand? Just watch the video ...

Bathing tips: Part III — Shake on command and roll dry
You can hear my friend Allison, the one behind the camera, start cracking up after I shut off the water, pull the curtain closed and tell Sensi to shake.
Sounds unbelievable, I know. But it's not. It's all just part of the bathing routine we've worked on for more than 8 years now.
Then, watch as my big black dog dries himself off. He uses more towels than I do, but I suppose he has more hair than I do too ...


  1. Aww. Sensi is a good boy! This video nicely shows that it is absolutely possible to get your dog to cooperate for a bath. All it takes to get there is consistancy, repetition, and a willingness to get wet!

  2. Thanks Lynn! I take a lot of pride in his bath time manners, even if it's not our favorite way to spend time together :-)

  3. Thanks for the tips. It's not an easy thing to create that video:-) Good job!

  4. Amazing tips.. thank you for sharing.It's really helpful for new owner dog like me.