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  • Writer's picturecaissiecanineinstr

Caissie Canine Instruction: Bathing your K9 at home.

We begin this week’s “RUFF TAILS” featuring 2 beautiful K9’s. We have an Irish Golden Retriever named Molly and an almost 4-year- old Golden Lab named Buddy. Both K9’s, as you are about to see, have enjoyed their long weekend!!!

Buddy is hard to keep out of the water and if you are not paying attention he will just go down to the dock and go for a swim. LOL.

Labs are susceptible to hot spots, so we end up toweling him dry or have him roll on his towel numerous times a day.

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Every day you go out with your canine you should consider the weather conditions. Weather can play an important part in how your dog responds to the environment. This is why I always consider the weather prior to every training session.

In the summer I always make sure to have water available for my own canines and/or my clients canines. It is important to be cognizant of the indicators of heat stroke, such as heavy panting or a dry nose. You may also see your canine searching desperately for a water source. Even if you do not see the signs on a hot day, please minimize your K9’s exercise times. Err on the side of caution.

If your K9 collapses to the ground from heat stroke, start first aid immediately by providing water and getting your K9 into a shaded area. Cool water can be poured on your canine to help reduce their internal temperature.

In the Spring and Fall, when it is cooler, you can extend your K9’s exercise times. You should still be looking for obvious signs of overheating and have water available.

In the winter months K9’s can be exercised well. In fact, some canines thrive in the snow conditions. However, there are still signs you should be aware of. If your canine is lifting their paws, when out walking in the snow or ice, please end your exercise or training session. It is too cold outside, and the bitter cold can damage your canines paw pads. Also remember to stay away from heavily salted sidewalks, as this can cause irritation to your K9’s paws, as well.

I encourage all my clients to spend time training outdoors in all climates. Just be aware of the temperatures and the environment, always use good judgement.

Welcome to Doggie Dialogue

Regular baths for your K9 are a part of an on-going grooming and good hygiene routine. Baths help remove visible dirt from your K9 that they earn through their walks and playtime. Baths help keep your K9’s coat clean and free from parasites.

It is recommended to brush your dog’s coat before-hand, especially if you have a long-haired dog. If your dog’s fur is already tangled, before the bath, it will make for an unpleasant experience for your K9.

To bathe smaller dogs, we recommend using the laundry room sink, (if one is available) for larger breeds we recommend the bathtub, or when “in season” you can bathe your larger breed outside.

Before putting your dog in the sink or bathtub, please double check the water pressure and water temperature. Ideally, you want the water pressure to be low and the water to be lukewarm. Cold water doesn’t clean as well.

We recommend that you dress comfortable, in casual clothing, as you may get soaked and dirty. LOL.

Have your absorbent towels, vet approved shampoo, combs/brushes close by before you start. When you are ready to go, check the water, get your K9 in the bathtub or sink, and fully saturate their coat. Next shampoo your dog, avoiding the eyes and face.

Lather the shampoo into your dog’s coat and let it “sit” for a few minutes, then thoroughly rinse with water.

Remember to thoroughly dry your K9 off to prevent damp spots in the undercoat which can lead to hot spots. This is a common dog skin disorder also known as acute moist dermatitis, this can cause sores and can be painful.

Unless directed by your vet, do not bathe your dog more than once a week, as this can dry out their skin and damage their fur. If your K9 has a healthy coat and normal skin, bathing no more than once a month is usually sufficient.

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