If your dog detests getting baths, the good news is that he is not alone in this and most other dogs have the same feeling about bath time. This is primarily because bath times mean way too much work and the onset of water often tends to put your dog in an alert mode.
Running water is bound to make your dog nervous and all of this combines to form an unexplained phobia before bath time. You may not realize but the phobia could gradually creep into you and before you know it, you start hating the idea of giving him a bath and however hard you try not to show it, your body language gives it away.
That, in turn, makes it even scarier for your dog because he is not sure how to react. However, you cannot avoid bath times because that is what will ensure proper hygiene for your dog. Using these highly recommended dog shampoos can help reinstate appropriate hygiene and cleanliness.
Avoid bath time hassles by following these simple steps.
Make It Fun
The thumb rule is to make bath times feel like fun and games. There is not much of a difference between dogs and human babies.
They need the same kind of attachment and are as emotional. When they start associating bath times with games and rewards, it will be much easier for you. Keep a snack jar handy in the room or in the area where you generally give him a bath. Once bath time is over, give them a chew toy that they will associate with good behavior.
Use Lukewarm Water
Cold water could make your dog start panicking. Instead of cold water, use warm water to bathe your dog to make him feel more comfortable.
Instead of dousing your dog with running water, you could try using a washcloth. Dousing with running water often scares dogs because they find it difficult to breathe under it and end up panicking. Observe your dog carefully. If he happens to like being under running water then you can continue with the same but if he feels frightened, you can switch to washcloths to bathe him.
Using cues before bath time can help settle your dog before the activity. Your cues could be anything depending on what your dog likes and what it does not. Using treats or going out for walks before bath times can help ease your dog out of the nervousness that he might feel.
Use Pet Friendly Gadgets
There are pet-friendly shower attachments that are not as scary as being placed under a faucet or under the shower. These attachments carry water from the water tank to the area where the bath is being given and sprays the water instead of forcing it on. The pressure of the water can also be adjusted as per the comfort level of your dog. This will ease a considerable amount of nervousness that your dog might be feeling otherwise.
Make It Comfortable
A lot of dogs find bathtubs uncomfortable because they keep slipping and skidding in it. To ease this discomfort, you can place an anti-skid mat at the bottom of the tub. If you want better control over your pet while giving him a bath to ensure that he does not escape, you could use a training tether, a leash or a collar.
Do Not Rush
The first rule of giving your dog a bath is to not rush through the process. Do not expect your dog to be comfortable from Day 1. Begin by making your dog feel alright about running water. Let him place his feet in the water on the first day. Help him adjust to the process of bathing gradually in a stepwise manner. This will create a permanent liking for water and bath times will be fun forever.