Dog looking at camera and getting a bath

How to Bathe Your Dog

By Heather Russell-Revesz

Bathing your dog may seem like a monumental chore, but with the right supplies you can have a clean fur buddy in no time.

1. The first thing you’ll want to do, even before you attempt to bathe your dog, is to teach him the stand command. This will ensure that he stands still and doesn’t slip and injure himself or you in the tub. Ask your trainer or grab a book with how-to instructions for stand.

2. Now that you are ready to get going, gather all of your supplies together. You’ll need:

3. You may be able to wash a toy dog in the sink; most other dogs will be heading to the bathtub. Place a no-slip mat on the bottom so that your dog has something to stand on. It’s also a good idea to cover the drain with a Magic Coat® Drain Cover to catch excess hair.

4. Put cotton balls in his ears to avoid getting water inside.

5. Before getting your dog wet, brush out any tangles or mats in his coat. If a knot gets wet it just gets tighter and harder to get out.

6. Thoroughly wet him with the spray attachment, using warm (not hot) water.

7. Once he’s wet, use the Magic Coat® Love Glove® Bath Mitt to rub the shampoo into the coat. The glove not only helps spread the shampoo but also loosens any dead hairs lingering in the coat. Make sure to get the belly and legs, and avoid your dog’s eyes.

8. Rinse out the shampoo using the spray attachment. Rinse again. Keep rinsing until the water runs clear. Leftover shampoo in the coat can make your dog dry and itchy.

9. Add conditioner if you’d like; longer-coated breeds can benefit from conditioner, and so can dogs with dry coats.

10. Use the Magic Coat® Super Absorbent Towel to quickly towel-dry your dog and soak up most of the excess water.

11. In warmer months, a short- or medium-coated dog can air-dry. But if it’s very cold or your dog has a more complicated coat, it’s time to blow-dry. Invest in a blow-dryer made just for dogs, as they will not overheat the skin. Blow-dry sections of the coat at a time.

12. If you’d like, finish with a little coat conditioning spray.

There you have it—a fresh, clean dog who is ready to go outside and roll around in the mud (again!)

Four Paws®, Magic Coat®, and Wee-Wee® products are available at major pet stores everywhere in the U.S. Please check with your local retailer for product availability near you.