Why Do Dogs Hate Getting Baths?

After a long walk and play in the mud, it's bath time for your pooch! However, many dogs hate baths. It feels weird, it’s uncomfortable, and it’s stressful. But it doesn’t have to be this way. Check out our top 5 reasons why dogs hate getting baths and what you can do to make it a little easier on them.

Negative Association
Your doggy’s fear of bath time may come from a bad experience they had in the past as they could have been sprayed with water in the face or had their hair cut to close to the skin. So how do you make it better? Try not to force your pup into the bath but encourage them so they slowly get used to it. Once the bath has finished give them their favourite food or let them play with their favourite toy so they know they have done well.

Courtesy: @baby.len 

It Sounds and Feels Weird
Dogs’ hearing is better than ours meaning that they are more sensitive to the sound of running water and hair dryers. The constant sound of water and feeling of soap can get your dog stressed out especially because they are trapped in a confined area while this is being done. We suggest trying to keep your dog as comfortable as possible by using a soothing voice and giving them rubs and pets throughout the whole ordeal.

Courtesy: @delightful_delilahcocker

It’s Uncomfortable
There is nothing comfortable about a bath for your pup. The water could be either too cold or too hot, soap can get into their eyes, and the bathtub is slippery. The worst part about it is they can’t even tell you what is wrong. This makes It extremely important to not only listen but watch all your dog’s behaviours. Try to make the bath environment as welcoming as possible by adding a matt in the tub so your doggy doesn’t slip and making sure there is no draft so they don’t get cold.

Courtesy: @piedpuppy

It’s Stressful
Bath time is stressful for your adorable pup. There is a lot of things happening at once that they don’t understand. Baths can also make dogs feel very restricted as they are stuck in a tub for what may feel like an eternity. Instead, try to create a positive experience for your doggy by taking them on an active and fun walk. Once they have relaxed slowly work your way to the bathtub and reward your doggy for good behaviour on the way.

Courtesy: @macey.poochon

They Like Being Smelly
Lastly, not only do dogs like being smelly they also process smells differently than humans. It helps them get information about other pets and their environment. Unfortunately for them, it is crucial that they get baths on a regular basis. This is why it is important to try and use a shampoo that is not too fragrant but that will clean them thoroughly.

Courtesy: @merve_man

Instead of your dog fearing bath time, try to make it an enjoyable experience or at least a tolerable one. Remember to slowly introduce them to the bath, always encourage them, give positive reinforcement, and listen to their needs. Also, try and take your pooch out for a walk before the bath to help them blow off some steam. Want to track their activity during their walk? Download our PoochPlay app and purchase our dog activity tracker today!