The puppy in this video may grow to like baths. His name is Ollie, and he is a Golden Retriever. At this filming, Ollie is just 8-weeks-old, getting his very first bath. It is a good idea to start bathing a puppy when they are still young enough to have zero negative association with bathtime, writes Josh Weiss-Roessler in Cesar’s Way.
It is actually possible to help dogs create positive associations with bathtime. Like with anything you want to teach your puppy, link the new behavior to something she likes, such as treats, praise, affection. Josh offers some really good tips in this article on the specific steps.
How to make bath time easier for puppies
First, even before the very first bath, train the puppy to voluntarily go inside an empty bathtub, or doggie bathtub. Use treats and praise for every desired action. Practice this until your puppy would go inside the bathtub, even without a reward. After she’s completely comfortable with this step, introduce warm water. Again, lots of praise, affection, treats.
Now, after she’s comfortable with the idea of being in a bathtub with warm water, there are certain things you can do to maintain this positive experience. Bathe from the neck down. Wipe the face with a damp towel. Dogs do not like water in their ears and eyes. Actually for the ears, if your dog let you put some cottonballs there, do so to prevent water from getting inside. Use a shampoo that cleans and removes odor but does not take away the natural oil that’s important for their skin. If you are not sure which shampoo to use, ask your vet. And towel them off with an absorbent towel. You can read the details in this article.
Enjoy watching the gentle parent providing a positive bathtime experience for Ollie.
Article source: Josh Weiss-Roessler in Cesar’s Way
Image source: John M on Flickr