Most dogs would rather skip bath time, but bathing plays an important role in the health of your dog's coat and skin. Keeping your dog clean and free of dirt and parasites is important. There's the added benefit of making your pooch more pleasant to be around.
How often should I bathe my dog?
While dogs don't require daily scrub downs like we do, they do need regular baths. Just how regular depends on several factors, such as the dog's environment and type of coat.
Here are some general guidelines:
Bathing once a month works for most dogs.
Dogs with an oily coat, like Basset Hounds, may need bathing as frequently as once a week.
Many short-haired breeds with smooth coats, such as Beagles and Weimaraners, do just fine with less frequent baths.
Breeds with water-repellent coats, such as Golden Retrievers and Great Pyrenees, should be bathed less often so as to preserve their natural oils.
Dogs with thick, double coats — such as Samoyeds, Malamutes, and other Northern breeds, do best with fewer baths and a lot of extra brushing (which gets rid of loose, dead hair and helps distribute natural oils that keep your dog's skin and coat healthy).
Of course, if your dog likes to go swimming, is obsessed with mud puddles, or lives in the country and does a lot of rolling in who-knows-what, then you may want to bathe more frequently.
Avoid bathing more often than truly necessary, or you'll strip your dog's coat of its natural oils, making it dry and more prone to dandruff, frizzies, and mats.
Basically, the best way to gauge when your dog needs a bath is to give her a good sniff. How does she smell to you? . Bow Wow Billie’s Grooming Shop uses a gentle moisturizing shampoo so you won’t have to worry if your pet needs/wants to bathe more frequently than these guidelines suggest. Bathing also gives us a chance to check your dog’s skin and coat for any issues. The life of one of our regulars was actually saved when Billie discovered a new lump.
Cause for Concern
Some dogs don’t have naturally oily coats, yet seem to become smelly oil slicks overnight. Allergies and skin infection can turn normally silky breeds such as Yorkies and Pugs into stinky, stringy messes. Consult your veterinarian if your buddy’s coat suddenly becomes greasy or changes in texture or feel.