Tips for Washing a Large Dog

It’s funny how big dogs often think they’re lapdogs, isn’t it? While it might amuse you when your 90-pound lab/Newfoundland mix plops three-quarters of their weight in your lap, there is one thing that is unlikely to make you or your pet happy: bath time. Even water dogs like labs sometimes recoil at the thought of going out in the rain, and their reaction to the prospect of having a bath can be even more severe. When your large mutt isn’t a fan of baths, it can make you dread the bathing experience even more than your pet does.

Make the Experience Fun and Filled With Rewards

If you only remember one tip for washing a big dog, make sure it’s this: Make the bathing process fun, and reward your dog throughout from beginning to end. When your pet knows they'll get treats during their bath, they may not resist being bathed much if at all. If treats aren’t an option, get a special toy your pet will only have access to during bath time so they'll look forward to having a bath. After the bath is over, consider taking your pet to one of their favorite spots or out for a nice, relaxing walk along their preferred route.

How to Wash a Large Dog

While making baths fun and giving your pet rewards is helpful advice for making your dog less resistant to getting cleaned up, it doesn’t provide instruction about how to give a large dog a bath. Here are some tips for bathing a big pooch:

  • Prepare: Whether you’re going to bathe your dog inside in the tub or shower or outside using a hose, preparation is the key to an enjoyable experience for you and your pet. Gather all the supplies you’ll need to clean your dog and make sure they’ll be within easy reach throughout your dog’s bath.
  • Dress appropriately: Many dogs will shake excess water off their coats while they’re bathed, which means you’ll probably get pretty wet during your pet’s bath. Dress appropriately and wear rubber-soled shoes so you don’t slip on a wet floor or damp grass.
  • Wet your dog: Once your dog is in the bathing area, wet them down with water that’s at a comfortable temperature. Avoid spraying your pet in the face and using water that’s too forcefully dispensed from a nozzle.
  • Lather up: Using a pet-approved product, scrub the shampoo to create a cleansing lather. Do not allow shampoo to get into your dog’s eyes or ears and prevent your pet from lapping up soapy water because it might upset their tummy.
  • Rinse off the shampoo: Once your pet is clean, you should thoroughly rinse off your dog. Shampoo residue can make your dog’s skin itchy and dry, so it’s imperative for you to rinse off every last bit of shampoo.
  • Dry off your dog: Use a towel to dry off your dog after you’re done rinsing them off. Resist the temptation to use your hairdryer to dry your dog’s coat unless it has a no-heat setting that will only circulate room-temperature air.

Bring Your Dog to an All Paws Pet Wash

If you want to make bath time extra special for you and your large dog without making a mess at your home, treat your dog with a visit to an All Paws Pet Wash…It’s a Tail Waggin’ Good Time! An All Paws Pet Wash is where you can bathe your large dog using any one of five shampoos and treatments. Your big pooch will enjoy feeling like a rock star without experiencing the stress of being separated from you like they'd have to be at a typical grooming shop.

Find a local All Paws Pet Wash and bring your big fur baby in for a bath today!