Any dog owner who has watched his or her four-legged friend get extra excited about rolling around in something it found on the ground knows exactly when a bath is needed. Whether it’s an unpleasant odor, matted fur, or just a general look of grunginess, giving your dog a bath sometimes must be done immediately.
That it’s a good idea to wait until your dog stinks before bathing him or her. Many experts recommend giving your dog a bath just a few times a year, perhaps quarterly.
Unless your dog has a skin condition or allergies that require more frequent washings, bathing your dog more than several times a year can be bad for your dog’s hair and skin. You don’t want to strip your dog’s coat of the natural oil that keeps it shiny and healthy, and dogs generally groom themselves in a way that keeps them relatively clean — and without removing those oils.
When it’s time to give your dog a bath — or the dog you are caring for if you are a groomer — having the right products on hand will make the job much easier.
A good brush is essential, as well. Establishing a daily routine of brushing your dog’s coat can help keep him or her clean without frequent bathing. Finally, you’ll want to use a towel that works well for drying without making a mess.
For dogs that can’t stand the idea of being clean, those are the least of your worries. But even though most dog owners will agree that giving a dog a bath is necessary, they might not agree on how often they need to do it. If you’re wondering how often to bathe a dog or how often to bathe a puppy, the simple answer is that there is no simple answer.