Two Daschunds in a bubble bath

How to bathe your dog

7 December 2022

Reviewed by Dr Jill McMaster BVM&S MBA MRCVS, Veterinary Surgeon and in-house expert at BorrowMyDoggy on 6 June 2023

Doggy bath time should be a fun experience but, if not carried out with care, it can sometimes be uncomfortable for both dogs and humans. Our members have given us tips that have worked for them and their pooch.

Be patient

If your pooch has never had a bath before, start with a very short, fun experience in the bathtub without water. The next time, have a little bit of lukewarm water under their feet. The next, try to pour a little water over them. Every time they go in the bath, try a little bit more and be sure to give them plenty of praise and treats. By being patient and getting your pooch happy with the idea of having a soak in the tub, you can enjoy stress-free bathing for years to come.

Brush first

Give your pup a good brushing to work out any knots & matts before getting them wet.


Test the temperature

Opt for lukewarm water that you test on your forearm first.


Use a specialist shampoo

Use dog shampoo instead of human shampoo (their PH is different than ours). If you dog has sensitive skin or any other skin issues your vet can advise on the best shampoo for them. Lather shampoo through their fur.


Rinse well

Rinse, rinse and then rinse again. Any leftover shampoo can irritate your pooch.


Drying technique

To dry, throw a towel over them and use another one to dry the face, then the ears and then the feet.


Finish with fun

End bath time with abundant praise or happy play time.

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Top tip: Buy a non-slip rubber mat to prevent your pooch from slipping

And there you have it, we hope these tips help your bath time.

This article is for information only, and should never replace any advice, diagnosis or treatment from your veterinary surgeon. Always contact your local vet or out of hours vet without delay if you have any concerns about your dog.

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