Some of us love bathing and showering; it can be relaxing, soothing, and comforting. If we enjoy showering and bathing, it’s likely due to positive experiences bathing growing up. Some of us look forward to showers and baths as a way to unwind, relax, and feel clean. On the flipside, some of us can’t stand showering – we avoid it because too often we’ve had soap in our eyes, been burned by hot water, or shocked by cold water, or feel like bathing is a complete chore to get out of.
Oddly enough, our pets can feel the same way about bathing, such that they either love it or they hate it. How your pet associates the experience of bath time with their emotional state can be controlled from the beginning when they’re pups and even later in their life – it’s never too late to make bath time a positive experience! We all know that it can be a chore to bathe our pets, but the rewards often outweigh the hard work; everyone loves a freshly-bathed pet! In this article we’ll discuss some helpful tips for making bath-time a pleasant experience for your pet.
There are a number of reasons why making bath-time a pleasant experience for your pet is warranted:
Washing pets can be hard work, especially if they want nothing to do with water, soap, or anything else associated. Making it a positive experience can make your life a whole lot easier when that time rolls around!
Wrangling your pet into the bath tub can be a total hassle if they’re unwilling and defiant; keeping the mess contained can be greatly helped by a pet who wants to be bathed!
Bathing your pet can be a bonding experience; they need to learn to develop trust, and what better opportunity? Your pet needs to know that you can contain the situation, you’re calm, and you’ll make it relaxing and fun for them every time.
Bath time can be a great experience for your pets, as long as you take the time to make it pleasant for them. Here are a few tips and suggestions for how to do so:
Avoiding getting soap in your pet’s eyes or ears is critical to making the experience pleasant. They make certain pet shampoos that are “tearless” so to speak, such that they won’t hurt your pet if you accidentally get it in a sensitive mucus membrane. For the right products for your individual pet’s needs, it’s best to consult your veterinarian.
Most pets usually have higher internal temperatures than humans do, which means the water temperature should be kept warmer, but not too hot. Make sure you test the water before your pet gets into it – you want to make the water temperature as soothing as possible.
This is the most important tip we can give you to help make bath time more fun. Here are a few suggestions on how to best reward your pet during and after a bath:
Treats – just as you would while training your pet, give your pet treats during and after a bath to reinforce the positive association with bath time.
Affection – another form of reinforcement, before, throughout, and after your pet’s bath it’s important to reward them with plenty of praise and affection.
After-bath treatments – after a bath, try gently brushing your pet with a soft brush – this can be soothing for the animal, and it can also remove all the excess hair and fur.
Here at Dr. Ron’s Animal Hospital & Emergency, we serve clients from all over Simi Valley, Moorpark, Thousand Oaks, Chatsworth, and other areas nearby Ventura County. We know how valuable the bond is between you and your pet. Bath time is a good way to bond with your pet, to keep them clean, and to check for any changes in their skin or other warning signs of health concerns. To learn more about bath products and other bathing tips you can use, please call one of our helpful animal professionals today.