There are some dog breeds that hate water and usually dread getting bathed, but if you start off washing your puppy early in life, they’ll learn to tolerate, or even love bath time. However, when they’re very small, it’s important that you know exactly what to wash a puppy with, how to bathe a puppy, and even when can you wash a puppy, to ensure you don’t use products that are harmful and damaging to the skin.
Puppies are delicate little creatures, so it’s important that you find and use products that are approved for their age. Often, most dog shampoos are safe as long as the puppy is at least three to four months of age.
If you need to bathe a puppy that’s under three months old, you’ll need to carefully read product labels and purchase shampoo that’s specifically designed for this age. These puppy shampoos are designed for sensitive skin. It’s also a good idea to use a puppy shampoo that’s tear-free so you don’t have to worry about getting soap in their eyes, which would cause eye irritation.
Can You Use Human Shampoo on Puppies?
Most vets will tell you that you should never use a shampoo that’s designed for humans on your furry friend. But why? The pH levels in dogs are nothing like the pH levels in humans, which is why shampoos that are designed for human use will be too strong for adult dogs and puppies. In fact, using a human shampoo on your pup can lead to dry, flaky skin, itching, and general irritation.
However, there are some vets out there that will argue that using a tear-free baby shampoo is perfectly safe for use in dogs under the age of three months. Considering these special shampoos are formulated for sensitive skin, most vets feel that you can safely use a small drop of baby shampoo in puppies of all ages.
Bathing Your Puppy
Whether your puppy is two months or six months, the odds are they probably won’t enjoy their first bath. They may try to frantically get out of the tub, clawing and sliding around, so it’s best that you have everything prepared before you bring your puppy into the bathroom. This means getting the bathwater and towels ready, the shampoo, and any other supplies you need.
Additionally, slipping in the tub can cause a serious injury. To prevent your puppy from slipping and sliding you can purchase a rubber bath mat or lay down a thick, folded towel.
Make sure the water you use is warm and not too cold or too hot. Remember, just like babies, puppies have very sensitive skin. The tub should only be filled up about four inches for large puppies and only a couple of inches for smaller breeds, such as chihuahuas.
After you’ve towel dried your puppy, getting their coat as dry as possible, you can use a comb or brush to remove any loose or matted fur.
Some breeds are very prone to mats so it’s important to keep up on daily brushing. Dogs that get mats easily are more susceptible to skin infections since the mats lock dirt and debris against the sensitive skin.
Aside from brushing, nail care and ear care can also be important. Certain breeds, especially those with floppy ears, such as Springer Spaniels, are more susceptible to ear infections and fungal infections. The first step to preventing an ear infection or yeast infection is to ensure your dog’s ears have been dried thoroughly. Additionally, during a bath you’ll want to be careful when washing and rinsing your puppy’s head, ensuring that no water enters the ear canal.
As you’re grooming your puppy after their bath, you may also want to carefully trim the hair around the ears. When kept short, this can help to significantly reduce your puppy’s chances of getting an ear infection since it will improve air circulation in this area.
Nail care in newborn puppies is not quite an issue, but as your puppy gets bigger, you’ll find that keeping their sharp nails filed is important, especially if they’re prone to jumping up on you and guests.
Immediately after their bath, make nail grinding and/or nail clipping part of the routine. This is another thing dogs tend to have an issue with, but if you start doing this when they’re just puppies you’ll find that your dogs will quickly become used to routine nail care.
Most puppies, especially those under three months of age, don’t need to be bathed often. However, as your puppy grows older, they may need frequent bathing, depending on breed. During the puppy months, they should only be bathed as needed, however, if you want to get them accustomed to baths you can bath them a few times a month.
If your puppy has their adult coat in, then you may have noticed more pet hair on the furniture, in corners, and on your clothing. The Shark Rotator TruePet Upright Corded Bagless Vacuum is designed to pick up pet hair using specially designed attachments that can suction hair off furniture, stairs, and a variety of surface types. This will help to keep your pet hair problem under control and can really make a world of difference if you or even your pup suffers from environmental or seasonal allergies.
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