We’re sure you are already aware of the importance of grooming your Poodle. This includes combing their coat, brushing their teeth, and of course, bathing them. Speaking of bath, many new pet owners ask this question. How often should you bathe a Poodle? If you want to know this and more, keep reading this article.
If you must know, there are steps when giving your Poodle a bath. And it could be different whether you have a pet or a show dog. However, as a rule of thumb, you should never bathe them too often as it could dry their skin.
Generally, you should give your Poodle a bath every three weeks. You see, your pet’s skin will release small amounts of natural body oils. What’s great about this is it is used to protect and also to moisturize their skin. But over the weeks, these oils will add up.
In its third week, the oil will be too much, and the skin’s pores will start to clog. This will also cause an odd smell from your dog.
What Happens When You Give Your Dog a Bath?
Some of the answers below might seem too obvious. However, some of you might not know what a proper bath can do for your Poodle.
- Gets rid of debris and other dirt
- Moisturizes without leaving too much residue
- Removes the oil
- Protects the hair from too much heat and intense cold
Phases of Poodle Bathing
There are different stages when you give your Poodle a Bath.
- Preparing the bathing area/ tools
- Preparing your pet
- Applying shampoo
- Rinsing properly
- Applying conditioner
Note: When you have a show dog, you need to be extra careful because their coat is often longer. Because of that, it is more susceptible to damages. In some cases, they might need to be bathed more often, depending on their appearance.
Stage 1. Preparing the bathing area/ tools
You have to prepare the bathing facilities and the tools. So if you are to use a grooming table, you need to remove the excess hair and spread a towel over it. You would also need to place the bath supplies near you so you can easily reach it when you’re about to use it. Here are a few things you need to invest in when giving your Poodle a bath.
- rubber mat
- soft bath towels
- hand-held water hose
- shampoo brush
- color-enhacing shampoo
- washcloth or sponge
When you have small and young Poodles, you can do the bathing in the kitchen sink.
Remember to use cotton to plug your pet’s ears so the water won’t enter the ear canal. For Poodles with chronic ear infections, adding a bit of Vaseline on the cotton can also help. For the case of show dogs, you should remove the topknot, bands, and ear wrappers. It would also be beneficial to part the hair at the center and let it fall on either side.
Also, you might forget to check the water temperature. Test if it is too cold or too hot. Ideally, you would want it to be warm so that your Poodle will be comfortable.
Stage 2. Preparing your pet
You must ensure that your Poodle is prepared or ready for the bath. Not doing so might leave a negative experience, and they will get slightly traumatized. What you should do is remove any tangles and dead hair from your Poodle. You can do this by brushing before bathing them. Take note that matts are harder to remove when it’s already wet. Also, when shampoo gets trap in the mat, it will be almost impossible to get it out completely.
While Poodles are considered non-shedding, it isn’t 100% accurate because they still shed. What happens, though, is that these hairs fall back to their coat.
Stage 3. Applying shampoo
Remember not to use human shampoo unless its pH is the same as that of your pet’s. But to be on the safe side, use a specially formulated shampoo for Poodles. You can also ask your vet about their recommended brands. Generally, your Poodle would need an alkaline-based shampoo. This means it needs to have a pH level between 7 to 14.
The Poodle’s coat might get uneven and stained. Thus, using the right type of shampoo is highly encouraged.
When you are about to shampoo your pet, here’s a quick trick. Have them stand up in the tub or sink and spray the water to wet the coat. Ensure that all parts of the body are wet thoroughly, except for the ears and head. For show dogs, you must apply shampoo and rinse them twice. However, if they are in oil treatments, you can also do three cycles.
Stage 4. Rinsing properly
When you rinse your Poodle, ensure that you won’t miss a spot. It should begin at the head, and you can do this properly by covering the eyes and the ear flaps with your hand. As we’ve said, warm water should do them good, and you can work your way from the back toward the tail. Then go over the sides and under the stomach. When you are done, you can finish the legs and feet.
If you don’t thoroughly wash your dog, its coat may look dull. What’s worse is that it may cause irritation.
Stage 5. Applying conditioner
Shampoos for dogs are good. However, it could still leave tangles. A good solution is to use the correct type of conditioner. If you can get a creme rinse, that should work too. This will moisturize the skin and hair and even restore its elasticity.
Lastly, dry your Poodle using a soft towel. Make the experience more pleasant by being a bit playful or by massaging your dog while drying. There are professional dog dryers to choose from, and you might want to consider getting those. Dryers are not just there to dry your Poodle down to their skin, but this will also make their coat fluffy and soft.
Can You Wash Your Poodle More Often?
You can wash your Poodle weekly, especially for those who have long hair. But remember that overdoing it and bathing your Poodle incorrectly might cause skin problems. Thus, it’s best to look for the right products to moisturize and protect their skin and hair. And as always, you need to rinse your Poodle well.
Take note that there are conditioners which you can leave on your Poodle. You can use that too but observe its effects on your dog. Better use a small amount first because you can never tell if it will cause irritations.
When to Take Your Poodle to Professional Groomers?
While you now know how to groom your Poodle, it wouldn’t hurt if you take them to professionals every six to eight weeks. Taking them to the experts has benefits, and it’s more than just aesthetics. If you must know, professional groomers are trained to handle your Poodle with caution. They are also aware if something is odd about your pet. Having said that, you can immediately seek professional help just in case your Poodle is having health issues that are not visible right away.
Can You Clip Your Poodle’s Hair Before Bathing?
It’s important to remember this.
You should only clip your pet’s hair only when it is already clean. We understand that it can be tempting to clip when you see that your Poodle is covered in mats, but that’s not a good practice. It is possible that a dirty dog can clog your clippers. And as we all know, that can lead to early deterioration. Imagine the added cost if you will buy a new one.
Take note that when you properly groom your Poodle, meaning you brush them regularly and give them baths, shaving their hair will not be necessary.
Why Don’t We Recommend Shaving Your Poodle’s Hair?
For some people, shaving their dog is the best solution, and it’s way easier to maintain. However, it’s not good for your Poodle. Doing so can remove your dog’s natural protection for their skin. It could lead to sunburn and other skin problems. Shearing is the more appropriate way to do it, wherein you don’t remove the coat entirely. The main objective is to keep them clean and light, most especially if usually love to play in the water.
If you want to take care of a Poodle, you need to prepare. They are a high-maintenance breed, and shaving shouldn’t be an option unless mats are forming already.
Can You Give a Poodle Puppy a Bath Right Away?
Poodle puppies are very delicate, and you need to be extra careful if you are to give them a bath. Remember to wait until your puppy has weaned. Also, it’s best not to bathe them when they just started their vaccination. Ideally, you should give them their first real bath when they reach three months.
Conclusion, How Often Should You Bathe a Poodle
You should bathe your Poodle every three weeks. But in some cases, if they do get extremely dirty, you can wash them more often or weekly. Just make sure you are using the right products.