You and your dog get along great, you really understand why they call them “man’s best friend,” that is, until bath time. Bath time stresses a lot of dogs out and this is natural. However, there are some things you can do to make getting your pup clean a more pleasurable experience for all parties involved. Here are some ways to get your dog to love rather than loathe bath time.
Like all other things when it comes to training your dog, the earlier you introduce things the better they will adapt to them. If you regularly bathe your dog as a puppy they won’t be as apprehensive about the exercise when he is older.
Half of the panic most dog’s experience during bath time is the fear of slipping. This needs to be prevented to keep the dog calm and safe from injury because this fear is founded in the fact that they could seriously injure themselves.
Placing a mat or towel down in front of the tub will establish a “safe zone” where the dog can feel more comfortable. Make sure you have this and everything else you will need before starting the process: dog shampoo, a brush, toys etc. If you have this then the dog is more likely to remain calm.
Get Some Help
A second pair of hands can make all the difference, especially if you are bathing a large dog. This way one person can distract the dog and focus on keeping the dog calm while the other person is free to wash the dog (who is hopefully now standing still). This means that the dog will spend less time in the bath and so hopefully have less time to build up stress and become impatient with the situation.
Acclimatise Your Dog to the Bathing Area
If your dog is stressed and afraid of bath time there is something you can do outside of bath time to help with this. If you feed the dog near or in the bathing area he will form a positive association with the space rather than a negative one.
The same is true of the dog bed your pup sleeps in. Put the dog bed a touch closer to the bathing area if at all possible. If your dog has a positive association with walks and their dog lead this can also be a useful tool.
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