If you're the new and proud owner of a wee puppy, bathing him for the first time can seem like a major task. From knowing when exactly to start bathing the cutie to determining which product to use, the job requires a lot of care and consideration.
Before you start running the water and preparing your puppy to get into the tub, make sure that the little one is over 5 weeks in age, advises the Partnership for Animal Welfare. This young age is beneficial as it helps puppies adjust to bathing early on -- making the process easy and uncomplicated for the rest of their lives, and perhaps even fun and relaxing. At this age, puppies are also old enough to handle the new and unfamiliar experience.
Avoid Human Soap and Shampoo
When looking for an appropriate cleansing product for your puppy's skin and fur, move away from anything that is intended for humans. Canine and human pH levels are not even close to being the same, and products that are specified for humans are, simply put, far too aggressive for the delicate coats and skins of dogs -- especially those of young puppies. From irritation of the skin to flakiness, human shampoo is a serious "no-no" for all members of the canine universe, whether puppies or seasoned seniors.
Before bathing your puppy, browse through your local pet supplies store for dog shampoos. If you're unsure of where to start, speak to your veterinarian for suggestions. Look for a gentle dog shampoo that is labeled for puppy use. Make sure it's a mild and tearless formula -- you don't want your furball experiencing any eye irritation, after all. To be especially cautious, get your vet's OK before you start using the selected shampoo on your pup.
Extra Bathing Tips
Take great pains to ensure you don't get any puppy shampoo in your pet's ears or eyes. This also applies to H20. When you're through massaging the puppy shampoo over your pet's body, carefully rinse it all out using lukewarm water. If you don't remove all remnants of shampoo from your puppy's coat and skin, he may experience extreme itchiness afterward -- not a fun time at all.
- Three Lions/Valueline/Getty Images