My 2 dogs -- and I -- got a bath

toomuchglassOctober 12, 2006

This is the first time I gave these 2 dogs a bath. I bought some flea shampoo and thought it was time - whether I wanted to or not. My 11 mo. old Poppy did pretty good - we did it in the shower and she lathered up nice and she rinsed off nicely . I only got "slightly" soaked. Then it was time for Ellie - my 85 pound Rottie. OMG ...She can't go down the basement steps so we did her in the bathtub. Thank Goodness DH is strong - her picked her up and carried her to the tub . I got her soaked and then tried to lather her up - I couldn't get this flea soap to lather ! It just sorta got sucked into her coat. I've never seen fur like this . It's so thick - so stiff -

I'm wondering if the shampoo even made it to her skin ! I got totally soaked doing her because she's so big - I had to lean on her to reach her backside. Whew -- flea baths done for now. How do you wash your Big Dawgs ?

(If anyone has a rottie - do they have the same kind of hair ? )

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Do the baths the same as you. Sometimes do them outside in the summer. I basically get the boys (separately of course) and myself into the tub. I wear shorts and a T-shirt and my hubby is outside the tub doing the soaping up and rinsing off since my 3 need to be kept in place or they will take off through the house shaking off suds and water. With my old girl my husband has to lift her in and then she gets bathed. Problem is, then she doesn't want to get out. She likes to lay in the tub for awahile. If we try and insist she will then have a seizure, so most times I just make sure she is as dry as possible and let her come out in her own time. I put a dry towel down outside the tub so she doesn't slip. When the baths are over I am soaked from head to toe, my DH is soaked, the bathroom walls are soaked, the floor is soaked, hallway a little soaked if they escape going thru the laundry room instead of out onto the deck to finish drying. Then there is the towel washing. That's another couple of hours to wash and dry all the towels it takes to bathe 3 dogs. Its always an ordeal and I don't bathe my guys often. Usually on if they have rolled in something of if my old girl has gone for a swim in the creek. All 3 are labs and labs shouldn't be bathed with soap on a scheduled regular basis. It messes up their coat. They have two coats because they are water dogs. All three dry differently. The boys dry quickly and the old gal has a much different furry type coat. It takes her 12 hours to dry. My friends all use a service called At Your Bark & Call. Van comes to your house, parks in the driveway, no mess, they bathe the dogs in the van, use their own water, etc., trim the nails, express anal sacks if necessary and dry them all without any horrible mess in your house. Haven't tried it. Too expensive to bathe 3 since it costs about $75.00 per dog. DH believes in doing things himself if he is able. Everyone I know who uses the service loves it. There may be one like it in your area if you are not opposed to spending that much.

    Bookmark   October 12, 2006 at 4:43PM
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We also have some businesses around here with elevated bathtubs with ramps for the dogs to get into them. For about $15 you get shampoo, chamois cloth to dry with, and a heavy-duty air blaster (not heated air) that just makes the water explode off the dog. The advantage is that the blow-dry also blasts off the dead, shedding hair once the dog starts to get dry. So you do the work (they provide plastic aprons) and they clean up after. No doghair from ceiling to floor in the bathroom, no wet mess, no wet dog dashing around the house, and no shedding for a while!! Great deal.

    Bookmark   October 12, 2006 at 10:10PM
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One of the first lessons our dog learned was the "bath time" routine... she's a shepherd/lab mix, almost 2 years old now, and we got her at about 4 months. She gets bathed in the bathtub (unless it's really hot outside in the summer), about every 2 weeks or so, with gentle oatmeal shampoo.

It probably helps that our dog LOVES water, although she's not particularly fond of baths... For the simple fact that it's a regular part of our routine, she's gotten used to it and doesn't give me any problems whatsoever. She even has learned the command "turn around" when I get done scrubbing one side and have to wash the other; I just tell her to turn around and she does it without a peep.

Do you have a removable shower head? We do, and it makes the process 1000 times easier than with pitchers of water.

After our girl gets her bath, she gets her "bath time" treat-- a shot of "squeezy cheese," right into the mouth. (She hasd her very own can of it... not a healthy snack, I know, but she only gets it after bathtimes, and one can lasts forever!)

    Bookmark   October 13, 2006 at 12:09PM
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K'Ehleyr has a really thick coat like that. I don't bathe her often, and just do it outside with a garden hose. Otherwise I don't think I could ever get her rinsed. Plus she has back problems and I dont' think that lifting her in and out of the tub would be good for her back, or mine for that matter (she's also about 85#).

I hope you're going to be using TopSpot or some other flea control now. The flea bath is only good for as long as the dog has shampoo on her skin. As soon as you rinse (and you have to because the soap is extremely irritating), the flea-killing ability of the shampoo is rinsed away too. Does a great job of de-fleaing, but doens't do anything to prevent fleas in the environment from jumping right back on. Plus you're going to want something with an insect growth regulator too, so whatever adults are still around are sterile. Otherwise you're going to have a MAJOR problem in a couple of weeks.

Good luck.

    Bookmark   October 13, 2006 at 12:20PM
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We've had some pretty large dogs in the past...Dobie, Mastiff, Irish Wolfhound. I used to do the shorts and t-shirt thing also and would get in the tub with them as they were too big to turn around in the tub. Of course, a hand-held shower attachment was a must! And, everything would get soaked, especially me, cuz they always would lean into me(big scaredy dogs). You really have to have a sense of humor to have big dogs! The last large dog we had was a Pyrenese mix and she had big hairy feet. My DH plumbed hot and cold water outside of the laundry room and put up an adjustable shower faucet and a hand-held attachment(and an eye bolt for her leash). We were in a warmer area then, so we could wash her(or just her feet)off before we let her indoors, even in the winter. She got so used to it, she would come right over when she saw one of us getting the water ready.

    Bookmark   October 13, 2006 at 12:48PM
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Totally agree about the hand held shower attachment. We love our big guys so much that have put an addition on to the house that will serve as a mudroom and have a dog wash. Can't wait till it is finished. Getting to old to getting them in and out of the bathtub and tired of my house getting soaked with wet dog in the process.

    Bookmark   October 13, 2006 at 1:09PM
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By the way, many flea treatments are not shampoos and wont lather up, so you are okay on that front. Hand held shower attachments and loads of big beach towels....Then another half an hour cleaning up yourself and the bathroom - completely normal...

    Bookmark   October 14, 2006 at 1:25PM
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