Dear Dr. Zeus,
Have you lived through the scenario of your people pulling out the towels and shampoo to give you a bath and you disappear and are nowhere to be found? Upon discovery I go limp and so my people have to drag my dead weight to the tub and then I mournfully look up at them as they bathe my coveted stench away. Correct me if I’m wrong but once bathed most dogs will zoom around, running, and if given the chance will roll in whatever they can find undoing your handy work. Why do I do this?
Sincerely, Kona the Golden Retriever
Even dogs that do not mind baths will race around after emerging from their bath, or even water in general. My own family will zoom out of the bath and head for the first dry surface they can find and dive, roll, and rub themselves all over it. Given the chance though, most dogs will head for dirt and be just as dirty if not dirtier before they have even had a chance to dry off. Bernadine Cruz D.V.M. explains that, “when you bathe dogs, you have them totally controlled… when they finally get out of the water, they’re like kids who have been turned loose on the playground”. Something else to consider is that most dogs are not bathed frequently, which makes the event in itself a big deal and surface from the event super stimulated.
Dogs also have this oft reaction to bathes because the concept of being clean and bathing is completely lost on them, there is no instinctual need or purpose. They have no problem with smelling a little stinky and are perfectly happy being covered in their own natural oils and scents along with whatever else they’ve found appealing. Dr. Cruz explains that dogs who tear around and roll after bathes are probably just trying to make themselves smell like dogs again.
An easy remedy for the dog who refuses to be clean or to get bathed is to take them to the groomer or you can give your dog a dry bath! Pet stores sell a “mousselike product” that can be worked into the coat and then brushed out, somewhat similar to human dry shampoo. Products like this will clean the fur without leaving an oily or powdery residue and requires no water. The bathing process becomes a massage as opposed to a plunging into the tub or a very once sided water fight. Another option you can utilize is dusting your dog’s coat in a mixture of cornstarch and baby powder, which will soak up the oil in their coat and neutralize any smell. Your dog may still likely get “the zoomies” afterwards but they won’t be leaving a trail of water behind them!
If you are curious some good products to try are:
Do you have any bathing suggestions?! Please feel free to share them in the comments below!
Category : Ask Dr. Zeus