How often do you wash your dog?

United States
November 8, 2009 9:52pm CST
I have to admit, I do not wash my dogs as often as I should. When I had a Chihuahua, she was easy to wash in the bathtub, and I did it about once a week. Now I have much larger dogs (one is a Great Dane!) and putting them in the tub is not an option. I wash them outside about once ever two weeks during the summer, and then during the winter, I rub them down with warm soapy cloths about as often. When I had dogs that stayed outside all the time, I didn't worry about washing them very often at all - maybe once a month during the summer, tops! They weren't worried about it, and since they weren't in the house, I wasn't worried about it either. :) So, how often do you wash your dogs, and are they inside or outside?
3 people like this
18 responses
• United States
9 Nov 09
Not enough that is for sure...I would say maybe 3 or 4 times a year unless she gets into something and needs it more often. We have a female black lab/border collie mix and she has a beautiful soft coat so there really isn't a need to bathe her real often unless she decides to roll in something yucky which trust me has happened a few two many times. We don't bathe her quite as often in the winter for the obvious reason of the cold but also because she doesn't get quite as much because there is no grass to roll in and also because she isn't outside as long because she hates the cold where as in the summer she wants to be out all the time and loves to lay on either the porch or out in the grass soaking up the sun so she tends to get a bit dirtier from rolling in the grass.
• United States
9 Nov 09
I think your approach is probably the best way to go, only washing as needed. Sometimes my boys really need it, like when they discovered a skunk in the yard a couple of months ago! They had baths daily for about a week until the smell was completely gone. My smaller dog wears an ear-to-ear smile after he finds something stinky to wallow in, hehe. When the dogs roll in the grass and lie in the sun, in our house we say that they are "putting their stink on," like perfume.:)
• United States
9 Nov 09
Hehehe..that is too funny. My dog is the same way when she rools in yuck, she jumps around and wags her tail like she just did something good but it never smells good that is for sure. We always say she likes to be stinky because when we give her a bath or even wash her doggie bed she doesn't lay on it until she gets it stinky LOL. We always tease her about her breath stining so bad and we will tease her and say "You need to go to the Walmart and get you some a*# breath be gone" LOL We think she knows to because she always crinkles her nose LOL
• United States
16 Nov 09
This is our first dog but I have known others that like to get their stink on as well. We like to tease our dog all the time about her stink as well.....I sometimes think she knows we are making fun of her because she gives us that look it is too funny...Thanks a bunch for the best response.
@gabs8513 (48710)
• United Kingdom
9 Nov 09
My little Gissi and all my previous Dogs have always lived inside Gissi get a bath every 3 months as you are not suppose to bath Dogs that often they will loose the Natural Oils of their Skin which will then cause them a lot of Problems Gissi gets brushed every Day as that helps them to keep their natural oils and coat soft My Dogs are like Children to me all of them have been and Gissi is to I do not believe in Dogs living outside at all as I always class them as part of my Family
• United States
12 Nov 09
I love how you speak of your dogs, gabs! I feel the same way about my pets! They are family. I cannot bear to leave them outside, either, though they go in the backyard nearly any time they want. :)
1 person likes this
@gabs8513 (48710)
• United Kingdom
12 Nov 09
My Dog is like my Baby and all of them have been I love Dogs I was brought up with Dogs and have always had a Dog, mainly Dogs that I have got from bad Homes or Rescue Centre I also used to have Cats and they all got on lol there where 4 Cats and 1 Dog People do not realize that are like Humans they need love and care that is all they ask for
@yaashmin (42)
• India
9 Nov 09
I have two dogs. My mom only will wash them. they bath everyday. She will make them wet and then she applies soap on them and then make them to wask nicely and then she wipes them with a cloth. They look fresh all day and play with us.. Thats it. Thank you Regards yaashmin
• United States
12 Nov 09
Goodness, your dogs are very clean, yaashmin! :) I wish my dogs and I had the patience and tolerance for daily dog washing! Applause to your mom for doing it! Some people say that washing dogs too often gives them skin problems. Do you find that your dogs have skin problems, or are they OK with daily bathing?
• India
12 Nov 09
Hi celestial bloom, Thanks for your beautiful comment.. I will admire my mom how she washes my pets... it was soooo funny.. Ya I didnt see any skin infection on my pets... If you find difficuilt in bathing your pets just pipe out water on them to make them cool and they will be fresh all day.. Its no need to put soap or anything daily to bath them.. And afterwards you just wipe them tomake them warm... thanks for your comments again... Take Care Byeee Regards yaashmin
• India
10 Nov 09
i also wash my dog oncea week...........not daily, tahts enough , coz they live outside my home , not inside........so its easy for me to wash them.......once a week.......not daily , coz we can escape from their odour.............
• United States
14 Nov 09
Once a week is as much as I've ever bathed any of my dogs, too, but she was a tiny inside dog. With the outside dogs I had growing up, we almost never bathed them, unless they got sprayed by a skunk, rolled in cow poo, etc. Outside dogs can find the nastiest stuff to wallow in! Funny how we want to escape their odor or eliminate it, while they tend to love it!
• Italy
9 Nov 09
I wash my huge dog twice a year, she stays inside most of the time and gets an extra wash if she gets dirty somewhere. She's white so she's also very easy at getting dirty.
@BlueGoblin (1831)
• United States
9 Nov 09
You should take your Great Dane to a professional groomer because you need to make sure you don't damage the coat, it's also a lot easier. You don't need to bath a dog in the winter months as much. You don't want to strip its coat of its protective oils. Washing them too much will dry out the skin and that is bad. Bath your dog when necessary, ie, when your dog rolled in poop or when the odor becomes unbearable.
@udnisak (610)
• Australia
9 Nov 09
i wash my dog like two to three times week.. i think it is essential to wash the dog more oftenly.. however when i wash the dog i had use this medicine fot its fut and all.. the process of washing my dog is sometimes fun but sometimes a disaster as he doesnt like it at all.. but now he is kind of used to it.. by the way mydogs name is blix..
• United States
12 Nov 09
I hope Blix's paw is better now, udnisak! I understand what you mean about bathtime sometimes being a disaster. Cleaning my Chihuahua's ears was always a big ordeal, and now brushing my Great Dane's teeth is the main struggle - he doesn't like it a bit! And yes, when they are bathed regularly, they get used to the process and quit fussing so much.
• India
9 Nov 09
Most advice you on the internet recommends washing your dog just several times per year! Either these people have outdoor dogs or the articles were a long time ago whaen the quality of pet shampoos was very poor! Times have changed! Today, dog's enjoy shampoos and conditioners that are on par with the best human shampoos-that don't have harsh chemicals and that son;t strip the hair of all on it's oils. The arguments against washing your dog too often are generally about stripping the coat of natural oils. The more often you wash something, the more often the sebum(oil)is going to be removed. Think about your own hair. If you don't wash it, what happens? it gets oily. Is the oil good for your hair? probably, but we wash our hair everyday anyway so that it's clean!
• United States
12 Nov 09
You raise some good points, vasudevan! You are right that shampoos and conditioners for both pets and people have greatly improved over the years. However, it is still difficult to find products without some of the more popular chemicals, like SLS and parabens, for folks who are sensitive to them (like myself). Just as with dogs, some folks advocate less shampooing for people, saying it throws off the body's natural oils. There are "no-poo" people (no shampoo, ever) and "low-poo" people (shampoo as needed, once or twice a week). The idea is that hair gets oily as a result of it being stripped of its oils - it goes into hypermode after washing, trying to replace all of the protective, natural oil that was removed. By minimalizing their shampoo use, the cycle should be broken. It's a little different with dogs, though, because they get into all sorts of stinky stuff! :P Sometimes they just need a good scrub lathering!
@rg0205 (2638)
• Hong Kong
9 Nov 09
I try to get them cleaned 2 times a week. They're indoor dogs but of course, we walk them so they go outside. I live in an apartment and they get to move around my home freely, and that's why I'm particular about their hygiene. They get on my couch and bed so I want them clean as much as possible.
• United States
12 Nov 09
When you say "get them cleaned," do you mean that you take them to a groomer? I used to take my Chihuahua in to have her nails clipped at the groomer's, but I always wash my own dogs. I think it would be better for my allergies if I bathed them more often, since they spend a lot of time outside. It would definitely be easier to keep them clean if I could take them to a groomer! I don't think they, or my pocketbook, would be cool with that, though... :(
@jayzelle (76)
9 Nov 09
since my dog is a shihtzu i usually wash it everyday. She is usually inside the house.
• United States
12 Nov 09
A shihtzu should be fairly easy to wash every day... but I still don't know that I would ever have that type of motivation! :) Even when I had a little Chihuahua, I only washed her every Saturday. Kudos to you for your dedication! Some folks are saying that too much bathing (more than a couple of times a year) can destroy the dog's natural oils, leading to skin and fur problems. Would you disagree? Does your dog ever have skin problems from daily washing?
@laglen (19779)
• United States
9 Nov 09
We have large dogs too. i only bathe them after camping and if they really need it (oily coat). They do not like baths and I am not real keen on giving them! :)
• United States
12 Nov 09
Heheh, I hear ya! My guys only like bath time during the really hot part of the summer. But even then, and with treats, I always lose my status as #1 Mom for a few hours afterward. And all of the dogs I've ever had have thrown little parties after being released from their baths, like they just survived some horrible ordeal and are now wild with jubilation. I wish I felt like that after every bath! :)
• India
9 Nov 09
I have an beautiful German Shephard.I give him an bath 15days once. In Between,if i feel he is so dirty i will wash him that time.
• United States
12 Nov 09
Washing every two weeks seems very reasonable to me, especially if he's in the house. Is your German Shepard in the house, swap? I tend to bathe my Great Dane a lot less in the colder months, even though he is in the house. For my dogs' winter baths I soak a cloth in a sink or large bowl filled will diluted castile soap and rub them down, followed by the same process with clean water to rinse them off. I do this with their ears, also. Then they get toweled and brushed. This is the tidiest way I can figure for cleaning my large indoor dogs in cooler months. :) If your German Shepard is indoors, how do you bathe him?
@shilley (157)
• India
9 Nov 09
Hi..we have two pet dogs at home and we never let them roam outside.Once in a day my brother takes them out for walking.And when it comes to grooming our dogs and keeping them tidy ,it is my brother's responsibility.My brother finds time once in a week and gives them hot water bath and also he makes sure to keep them free from lice,so he applies powder for lice treatment.Our pets are a part of our family,and are given prominence just like any other family member.We also do some shopping for dog stuff like their bathing soap,powder,polishing brush.
• United States
9 Nov 09
Your dogs must stay very clean if they only go out once a day! Mine would rebel on me if I didn't let them out at least 5-6 times a day, hehe. In the winter, they go out a little less, so they stay cleaner, but in the warmer months, sometimes they spend hours outside every day. I have to wash them more often then.
• United States
9 Nov 09
My dog is very small but I still only wash her when she truly needs it which depending on the time of year can be as often as once a week! I have a no rinse shampoo that I use in between to keep her smelling fresh and clean all the time. I find that it is much easier than having to fight to give her a bath and trying to get her dry afterward.
• United States
9 Nov 09
Oh, I like the idea of a no-rinse shampoo, alyssakenzie! Can you recommend a good brand? When I cannot wash my big dogs outside, I dilute a little Dr. Bronner's castile soap in a big bowl of warm water, and then I dip a rag in the solution and wipe down my freshly brushed dogs. I then wipe them down with a rinsed rag to get the soap off and towel dry. It would be nice to be able to skip the rinsing step!
@shhheila (1846)
• Philippines
9 Nov 09
i bathe my dogs twice a week but if its rainy and cold, i dont bathe them... i want them to be clean especially when they go inside the house...
• United States
9 Nov 09
Wow, shhheila, I wish my dogs were as clean as yours! It is far too big of a hassle for me to try to wash my guys too often. They let me, but they don't make it easy and they make a decent sized mess, water and fur everywhere. :P
@ladym33 (10990)
• United States
9 Nov 09
I hardly ever bathed my dog. I bathed her inside a couple of times and it was just not worth it. She did not like the water or the bath time and she would fight me the whole time trying to get away. Then she would shake like mad and water and hair would fly every where. It would take me a long time to clean the bathroom after giving her a bath. So I would try to keep her clean by brushing her often, and I would always wipe with a towel if she got wet or muddy. In the summer time I would usually give her a bath with the hose outside, she really liked that, she liked it much more than she ever did getting bathed inside, and I didn't have spend 2 hours cleaning the bathroom after that.
• United States
9 Nov 09
Haha, yes, some dogs are nearly impossible to bathe! I remember as a child once watching our family dog, a Shepard/Collie, drag my dad across the yard as he tried to wet her with the hose! My Chihuaha would put up a good struggle and make a huge mess when I tried to wash her in the bathroom sink, so I eventually got a detachable showerhead and started washing her in the tub. She almost liked that, but she would still burst out of the bathroom afterwards like I had been trying to murder her! :)
@feodda (579)
• Philippines
9 Nov 09
I wash my Labrador daily because my dog plays a lot. He needed to be washed daily.
• United States
9 Nov 09
Whew! I've never owned a dog that needed to be washed that often! I try to own low maintenance pets. Your Lab must be very well behaved to take so many baths! My dogs don't mind too much, but they aren't crazy about it, act sulky and pitiful for a few hours afterward. Lots of brushing and some treats sweeten the deal for them, though. Do you have to bribe your Lab too?
@BART78 (2931)
• Canada
9 Nov 09
how often your dog will need a bath depends on the breed and what type of activities the dog is involved. it's bet to bathe your dog only when your dog is really dirty. just your nose - it will tell you if your best friend needs a bath. if a dog is bathed too often the skin may be stripped of its natural, protective oils. this will result in dry itchy skin, which will cause your dog to scratch, further irritatin the already sensative skin..
• United States
9 Nov 09
I agree with you. I bathed my Chihuahua frequently, because she was just a naturally stinky little dog. My Dane and Border Collie/Blue Heeler mix don't get very smelly unless they spend a lot of time playing or lying in the sun, so they don't need as many baths. I focus more on brushing, which they love! :)