What Do Groomers Put on Dogs to Make Them Smell Good?

Your groomer works hard to get that smell off.
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You most likely think of your groomer as someone who makes miracles happen. Every time you drop off your four-legged pal -- covered in dirt, grime and stinking of filth -- you get a bright shiny new dog in return. Your groomer uses a series of formulas to get that stinky stench off of your furry pal. If you want to make the magic happen at home, simply ask your grooming facility which products they use and where to purchase them.


The first step in making your pup smell good is removing any visible particles that make him smelly. Your groomer hoses down Boomer, getting every nook and cranny wet. This is a major step in getting rid of the dog smell, since water is the primary way to clean sensitive areas of his body, like around his eyes or near his mouth where food gets stuck.


Once Boomer is soaked completely, he’ll get a long rubdown with a specialized doggie shampoo. The type of shampoo your groomer uses depends on the age of your dog and any special coat conditions he has. If Boomer is a puppy, for example, your groomer will use a puppy shampoo on your pooch that doesn’t burn his eyes. Plus, it makes your pup smell like a newborn baby. However, if your canine is prone to having dry or itchy skin, your groomer might lather him up with a mild scented oatmeal shampoo. Depending on how dirty your barking buddy is, he may need a second round of suds before the next step.


Your dog’s mane needs a little nourishing treatment, just like your hair. Conditioner replaces some of the lost moisture that gets stripped away during the shampooing process. Most shampoos have some type of corresponding conditioner; an oatmeal conditioner after an oatmeal shampoo, for example. Plus, by leaving conditioner on your fur ball for a few moments, that fresh-smelling scent will linger on his coat for days.

Cologne or Perfume

After the whole bathing process is over, your groomer either will towel dry or blow dry your pup with a cool-air dryer. Thorough drying is essential for long-lasting freshness, since it eliminates all of those hidden wet spots, like in Boomer’s armpits where smells start. Once his coat is dry and pristine, your groomer probably will spray him with a few squirts of cologne or perfume. Often you can request a specific scent, such as baby powder, lavender or even a mock designer fragrance. These perfumes are specifically designed to be used on canines; they’re not human fragrances.

Rubbing Alcohol

Rubbing alcohol isn’t something you think of that smells good and it doesn’t. However, rubbing alcohol kills stench-causing bacteria that lurk around in your dog’s ears. Before sending Boomer home, your groomer might clean out around the inside of his ears with a cotton ball and rubbing alcohol. This way, ear odors should stay away for an extended period of time.