How to Wash a Japanese Chin

Keeping your Japanese chin warm after his bath is as simple as blowing his coat dry.

Keeping your Japanese chin warm after his bath is as simple as blowing his coat dry.

These tiny dogs are known for their beautiful hair, which is surprisingly easy to maintain. Long and silky -- with lots of shedding -- it is a single coat that rarely mats. A simple bath every seven to ten days reduces shedding and keeps their beautiful coat fresh and clean.

Brush your Japanese chin prior to bathing. This breed is a heavy shedder, and removing loose hair prior to getting him wet will make the entire process easier and less messy.

Trim his nails prior to bathing to avoid scratches on the tub or your skin if your Japanese chin is excitable during a bath. Remove his collar and set it aside.

Place the chin in your bathtub and gently wet him down with warm water from a sprayer, or place several inches of warm water in the tub prior to placing him in it and use a cup to pour it over his small body. Saturate the coat so that it will lather easily.

Rub a small amount of a mild dog shampoo into his fur, starting at the neck. Gently rub the shampoo in circles on both sides of his body with your hands, working it into a lather. Move your hands down his back and sides to his stomach, and eventually reaching down his legs and tail. Do the top of his head and around his ears last to avoid getting shampoo into his eyes.

Place a small amount of baby shampoo on a wet washcloth; gently rub the soapy cloth in circles on your pup's face to clean this area and avoid getting soap in his eyes. Rinse out the cloth with clean, warm water and repeat the process to remove the soap.

Rinse all the shampoo off your chin with clean, warm water. Continue to rinse until the water runs clear; avoid leaving soap residue in his coat. Remove him from the tub and towel dry his fur to absorb dripping water.

Blow dry the dog's fur, using a dog brush to smooth out the hair as it dries. For younger chins, a boar bristle brush is recommended; older dogs with more hair require a pin brush.

Items you will need

  • Dog brush
  • Nail trimmer
  • Dog shampoo
  • Baby shampoo
  • Washcloth
  • Towel
  • Blow dryer


  • If your dog has dry skin or remains fresh-smelling, bathing can be adjusted to every few weeks or even once a month.
  • A small amount of dog conditioner can be rubbed into the coat after towel-drying to help keep it silky after it is dry.


  • Japanese chins are bred to be fragile dogs; hold your dog carefully when bathing to reduce the chance of injury.
  • Do not get any water in your dog's eyes or nose during the bath.

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About the Author

Lori Lapierre holds a Bachelor of Arts and Science in public relations/communications. For 17 years, she worked for a Fortune 500 company before purchasing a business and starting a family. She is a regular freelancer for "Living Light News," an award-winning national publication. Her past writing experience includes school news reporting, church drama, in-house business articles and a self-published mystery, "Duty Free Murder."

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