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Dog washing tips from head-to-tail


Whether your dog has been rolling around in the backyard or slapping through puddles on their rainy morning walk, sooner or later its going to need a bath. Some dogs enjoy a bath as much as a walk, while others simply prefer to stay dry and continue with playtime. Bridewell Hilltop Boarding Kennels & Cattery offers dog grooming in San Rafael and we know that however your dog reacts come bath time, this step-by-step guide will help you prepare and give you the tools needed to ensure they’re comfortable.

  1. Find the right spot

For smaller-sized dogs, the perfect bath spot can be as simple as the kitchen sink or a basin outside. For regular and larger-sized dogs, the bathtub or a kiddie pool in the backyard are ideal choices. If you do decide to use the bathtub, remember to put a mat on the bottom to prevent your dog from slipping and potentially injuring itself.

  1. Setup the bath before getting your dog

Before you wash your dog you’ll need a few supplies:

  • Brush
  • Dog shampoo
  • Cotton swabs
  • Nail trimmers
  • Absorbent towel
  • Treats

Make sure everything is in place and you’re ready to go before getting your dog. This will make the process easier for both you and your pet.

  1. Make sure the water is lukewarm when running the bath

We might like a hot shower on a cold rainy day, but your dog likely doesn’t. Avoid any burning or scalding risks by keeping the water lukewarm. You also only need to fill the tub a few inches, as you don’t want your dog to be submerged in the water.

  1. Start off by brushing your dog

By starting off with a brushing, you are removing any matting in the fur that will be difficult, and possibly painful, to remove once wet. You’ll also loosen up any dirt and residue in the fur making the actual washing and rinsing a little bit easier.

  1. Thoroughly rinse your dog

After the brushing, place your you dog in the water and begin with a thorough rinse, but avoid the head. Your dog won’t want its face wet and may resist. Start at the back and make sure to keep the spray away from its eyes and nose.

 6. Lather shampoo into the fur

Now you can lather shampoo into your dog’s fur. When choosing a pet shampoo it’s important to look for one that won’t dry or damage the skin. Pour out a dime-sized portion into your hands, work it into a lather and gently rub it into the fur, covering their entire body.

  1. Thoroughly rinse your dog again

Keep rinsing your dog (again, be careful to avoid the eyes and nose) to make sure all the shampoo is removed. The leftover residue may leave a film in the fur and will cause skin irritation. After rinsing, dry your dog thoroughly with a towel.

Call us today for dog grooming in San Rafael!

If you need to make an appointment for dog grooming in San Rafael, call the professional staff at Bridewell Hilltop Boarding Kennels & Cattery. Each pet they see gets a complete grooming and thorough examination to identify if there are any potential problems you need to be aware of. Contact us to schedule your pet’s grooming appointment today!