One of the most common grooming activities dog owners wonder about is the frequency of bathing. While some owners may choose to bathe their dog daily, this can be harmful to your pet. It's important you understand how often to bathe your dog so you protect her skin and coat. Even if your does have an odor, there are other ways to handle the funk and stay on schedule for bathing.
How Often to Bathe
Dogs are not like humans. You do not need to bathe your dog on a daily or even weekly basis. According to Dr. Sherry Weaver, dogs should be bathed once per month. Some breeds may not have a problem with odor at all. In some cases, owners can get away with washing their dog every two months.
Risks of Bathing Too Often
Bathing a dog too frequently can be damaging to both the skin and coat. Your dog may experience dry skin and brittle hair when frequent bathing washes away the essential oils that keep her skin and hair healthy. If you do need to bathe your dog more than once per month, make sure to use a moisturizing shampoo or use a different method to freshen the dog's coat.
How to Prevent Dog Odors
Two things you can do to greatly reduce the chances of your dog stinking is to feed her a high-quality diet and brush her daily. A high-quality diet can help prevent skin problems that may lead to odor and can also help prevent excessive shedding. Daily brushing will remove loose hair before it has a chance to cause an odor. If you don't brush your dog daily, the dead hair will prevent the skin from secreting oils that keep the coat and skin healthy and odor-free. You can also prevent odors by making sure your pet doesn't roll in anything or aggravate wild animals, such as skunks. If you have your dog groomed, asking the groomer to empty the anal glands can also prevent odors.
What to Do Between Baths
If your dog does become stinky in between baths, you can sprinkle her fur with baking soda and brush through to remove the odor. You can also use dog wipes to clean muddy paws or a stinky tush. If your dog isn't dirty, but still smelly, you can use dog deodorant to help mask her odor. In most cases, though, a good brushing will help your dog smell better.