A puppy’s first bath is a traumatic situation that must be well planned to make it a pleasant experience for the rest of his life.
When the puppy is separated from his mother and siblings and arrives at what will be his own house, he meets a new environment, new people, new smells, etc. All these are very stressful changes and it is necessary to give the puppy a calm and friendly environment until it gets used to it and begin to feel at ease.
This time varies according to the “personality” of each puppy to adjust to whichever environment they find themselves. That is why it is important to know how to bathe a puppy at this stage so as not to add another change in the child’s life.
First of all, it is important to take it to the veterinarian so that he receives his first vaccine, a dose of antiparasitic, and to indicate the food that corresponds to him according to his size and age. The vet will tell you when you can bathe your puppy.
It is convenient to wait a few days after the vaccine, even after the second dose, depending on the time of year and the area where you live. If before that date the puppy gets dirty, you can wash it with a damp cloth or wash only the area that has been stained.
Meanwhile, you can start brushing its hair; This will help keep it cleaner and make you get used to this routine that will be so important throughout your life. When the day of your puppy’s first bath finally arrives, you must have everything ready before you begin.
Items you’ll need to bathe a puppy
- A sink with the drain opened: this is needed so that the water does not accumulate, so the puppy is not afraid of being submerged under the water. You must have a tap with hot and cold water.
- A hose with a sprayer to attach to the tap: the hose allows you to wet and lighten the dog’s hair without having to fight with him to place it under running water.
- A shampoo that is suitable for puppies: with neutral pH, without perfumes or with mild flavorings that do not irritate or delicate to the skin. Not only should you know how to bathe a puppy, but you should also choose a special product for him that won’t be changed in the next bath. If you do not have shampoo, you can perfectly use a neutral glycerin soap or white bread soap, which is used to wash clothes. These do not have any type of perfume added, they do not dry the skin or generate allergic reactions. Rinse with plenty of water so that no shampoo remains on the skin.
- Toys that the puppy likes and that can get into the water: with them, you can entertain and associate the bathroom with something that is pleasant. while bathing the dog it sees the toy and concentrates on it.
- A hand towel to wrap and start drying the puppy as soon as it comes out of the water. After bathing and drying it with the towel, you can try to dry it with a hair dryer, but keep it well away from the body so that it does not panic. Not only is it important to know how to bathe a puppy, but also how to dry it. First let him listen to the noise the dryer makes and when it no longer bothers him you point the hot air at him from about 50 cm or so. Do not blow air directly into its face. While you use the dryer you can give it a bone or other candy to stop paying attention to the noise and the “wind”.
- If your puppy has long hair you will also need a soft wire brush or metal comb: to untangle his hair, you certainly need a soft comb. In this case, you can add some of the natural oils that help to disassemble the hair knots, so you will not cause discomfort when combing it. It is important to untangle long hair before wetting it.
Tips for a puppy’s first bath
Now that you know how to bathe a puppy, you can read some recommendations that will make this moment much more enjoyable for him.
Dogs perceive our mood very well, so it is important that you be cheerful, that you speak with kind and reassuring words throughout the bath. Do not lose patience and do not scold him if he does not behave as you expected. If the puppy becomes very nervous, you can suspend the bath calmly, take it out of the sink and wrap it with the towel (no hair dryer for this time!). Give him his treat and try another day again.
Another important answer to the question of how to bathe a puppy is not to wet his face in the first washes. Leave that part of the body till when the water no longer bothers the puppy. Meanwhile, you can wash it with a cloth or your wet hand; if you prefer you can use baby wipes. This will prevent water from entering the ears or soap in the eyes.
When you have finished drying, let your puppy rest and give it a tasty bone or a plastic or leather teether. If it’s a sunny day and the vet has permitted you to take it out on the street, you can take him for a walk and play with him in the park. You will see that if you follow these tips, you will get your dog to get used to the bathroom and even enjoy it.
Remember that it is very important that you follow these instructions on how to bathe a puppy to do it correctly and avoid that the moment of bathing becomes something negative for your little dog.