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Making a Splash with Your Dog's Bath

Dog bathing doesn't need to be difficult. With preparation, perseverance and a positive attitude, bathing can easily become a fun and fulfilling part of the regular grooming cycle, while helping your pet avoid many diseases and infections. A general rule of thumb, according to ASPCA recommendations, is to bathe your dog at least every three months, increasing the frequency during the hot, summer months. Many breeds and coat styles, however, require more frequent bathing (as do, naturally, mischief-finding, outdoor-loving dogs), while others necessitate fewer baths. Regular bathing will also help keep shedding to a minimum with most such breeds. Remember to use approved dog shampoo, preferably one that also conditions, detangles and moisturizes.
What You Need

Cotton balls
Dog shampoo
Rubber tub mat
Bathing tether (if necessary for reluctant bathers; available in large pet stores)

How to Bathe Your Dog

Place rubber mat in bottom of the tub or sink so dog won't slip or slide
Fill tub with 3 - 4 inches of lukewarm water (not hot)
Brush dog thoroughly to remove tangles, mats and loose hair
Place cotton balls snugly in dog's ears to keep out water and soap
Place dog in water, holding him gently but firmly
Using a plastic pitcher, unbreakable cup or spray hose, thoroughly wet dog from head down, keeping water out of the ears and eyes
Apply dog shampoo (never use human shampoo) over entire body and lather in from shoulders to tail, finishing with the head
Rinse thoroughly with warm water, beginning with the head
Remove dog from tub or sink
Towel dry until dog is damp
If it is sunny and hot, you can allow the dog to air dry in an enclosed area, exercise pen or ventilated enclosure. It is unwise to allow a damp dog to run free because he may be enticed to roll on dirty areas
Continue to towel dry or use a commercial pet dryer approved for home use. A blow dryer can be substituted for a pet dryer, using a low, warm setting to finish the drying process.

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