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How to Bathe Your Dog
May 1, 2014

If your dog recently rolled in something stinky or slimy—or his coat is starting to get a bit grimy and oily—you may want to give him a bath. Learn how from a Ceres veterinary professional below.

Get Dog Used to Tub

The first step is to get your dog used to being in the tub. Use treats or toys to coax him in, offering lots of verbal praise as you go. Try introducing the water—put an inch or so of lukewarm water in the tub and see if your dog is okay with it. Try spreading a bit on his fur. Once your dog seems comfortable in the bathtub and with water, you’re ready for the bath.


Before you begin, purchase a dog shampoo. Find this at a pet supply store or your vet’s office. Don’t use human shampoo, as it is too strong for your dog’s skin. Also have a brush on hand and a large towel for drying.


Brush your dog down before the bath. This will remove any loose fur and smooth any tangles.

Put Dog in Tub

Fill the tub with about four or five inches of lukewarm water and get your dog in. You can try tossing a treat into the water to get your dog to jump in.

Scrubbing Time

Thoroughly wet your dog, either with the spray hose or a bucket of water. Once your dog is completely wet, apply the shampoo and massage it into his coat from neck to tail. Be careful to avoid getting shampoo in your dog’s eyes, ears, nose, or mouth.

Once your dog is washed, rinse him down thoroughly with the hose or bucket. Make sure all shampoo residue is removed. Once he’s clean, dry him off with your towel. Some dog owners use a blow dryer—only do this if your dog is comfortable with the sound and feel of the dryer, and never get the nozzle too close to your dog’s skin.

Toss your dog a few treats for a job well done, and you’re finished! Ask your Ceres veterinarian for more tips on doggie bathing time.


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