Bathing dogs can be tough. To keep you and your bathroom clean during your next doggie bath, here are seven bathroom ideas to make bathing your dog easier.
Having a dog can bring so much joy into your life.
They’re cute. They’re cuddly. They’re fun to be around. They give you unconditional love. We could go on and on …
But there’s one thing that’s not so fun about having a pup in the home:
Giving them a bath!
Washing a dog in a bathtub, especially a big dog, isn’t easy to do. And if you feel like you get a bath along with them, you’re not alone.
To keep you and your bathroom clean during your next doggie bath, here are seven bathroom ideas to make bathing your dog easier.
1. Have Your Supplies Close at Hand
Before you even think about putting your dog in the tub, gather your supplies. Have the shampoo, towels, grooming brush, and other essentials close at hand so you don’t have to scramble for things once the bath is underway.
Put everything you need within easy reach. That way, your wet dog won’t have a chance to escape while you reach or look for the shampoo bottle or drying towel.
It’s also a good idea to have a few treats on hand, so when they do sit still and let you wash them, you can reward them for good behavior!
2. Plug Your Drain
Unless you enjoy pulling fur and hair from deep within your pipes, plug your drain before you start. It’s always better to prevent a clog than to have to unclog a pipe later.
Just be sure you don’t plug it all the way — you don’t want the tub to fill with water while you’re giving your dog a bath.
Either use a mesh screen to catch the hair or use a plug that’s a bit smaller than your drain. That way, the water will still run down the drain while you’re shampooing and rinsing your pup.
3. Cover Your Entire Floor With Towels
Just because your dog enjoyed and behaved for his last bath doesn’t mean he’s in the mood for the one you’re about to give him. Don’t assume that it will go well because it went well last time. It may not.
For many pet owners, the worst part about bathing a dog at home is the half-hour of cleanup that’s required afterward. To prevent yourself from having to mop up a soaking wet floor, cover your entire bathroom floor in old towels.
Even if your dog jumps out, your tile floor won’t be dangerous, slippery, or covered in puddles.
4. Give Your Dog Some Traction
Between their nails and those soft pads on their paws, dogs often have a hard time getting traction on slick surfaces. To prevent your pup from slipping and sliding in the tub, put something under his feet so that he’s got something to grip on.
A non-slip rubber mat is ideal because they’re super easy to clean. When the bath is over, you can just wash it down with some hot water or take it outside and rinse it off with a hose.
Don’t have a bath mat? A towel works just as well.
Having something soft underfoot can make your dog feel more comfortable, prevent sliding, and ease their anxiety if they’re not big fans of the bath.
5. Secure Them With a Leash
Does your dog always try to escape the tub when they’re soaking wet and sudsy? You can prevent an unwanted jailbreak simply by putting your dog on a leash.
Put your dog on a leash and tie the leash to a soap dish, towel rack, or a hook in the wall. Don’t pull them tight — attach it just enough that they won’t be able to run out of the room if they try to make a break for it.
Don’t have anything fixed to the wall that you can attach them to? Have a spouse, a friend, or a roommate hold the leash. A second set of human hands can be a huge help.
Keep in mind, if you have a big, powerful dog, tying their leash in the bath may not be a great idea. With enough force, there’s a chance they could pull your soap dish or towel rack right off the wall.
6. Invest in a Detachable Showerhead
It’s fairly easy to rinse a small dog with a cup of water, but if you have a big dog, that tactic can take quite a while.
Most dogs aren’t likely to stand still long enough to rinse off with an overhead showerhead. But if you have a detachable showerhead that you can hold by hand, dog bathing will be infinitely easier.
A hand-held showerhead will give you more control over where and how you rinse your dog. You don’t want them to be sudsy and soapy with unrinsed shampoo.
Whatever method you use, make sure you rinse their fur thoroughly before drying them off.
7. Dry Them Comfortably
Unless you like having a wet dog run through the house, you’ll need to dry them thoroughly in the bathroom before the job is done.
One way to do it is to use a lot of towels and a grooming brush to untangle that wet fur. Another method is to use a blow dryer. It all depends on what your dog can tolerate.
Drying your dog with a towel is the safest bet. But depending on their coat, that may require some extra brushing and grooming.
If you do use a blow dryer, be sure to use it on a cool or low setting. The last thing you want to do is burn your pup with too much heat!
Dogs need regular baths; there’s no way around it. If your dog puts up a fight every time they go near the tub, here are some things you can do to make it easier:
- Have all supplies within easy reach.
- Plug your drain so it doesn’t clog with fur.
- Cover your bathroom floor with towels.
- Give your dog tub traction with a bath mat or a towel.
- Put them on a leash loosely attached to a towel rack or wall hook.
- Rinse them with a detachable showerhead.
- Dry them thoroughly, safely, and comfortably before leaving the bathroom.
Can’t bear the thought of giving your dog another bath? If you can’t handle the job yourself, take them to the groomer for a professional job.
After all, it’s not just about making your dog look and feel clean … it’s also about keeping them happy and safe.
Caitlin Sinclair is the Property Manager at The Charlie, a luxury apartment community in Santa Ana, CA.