Growing up my Mom always said that "you shouldn't bathe a dog too much as it will dry out the natural oils in their skin". I don't ever recall seeing "Dog" shampoo in the house. I think my parents probably used Palmolive or Sunlight dish soap or something along those lines.
I always used Johnson's Baby Shampoo as it is tearless. It was also OK'd by my Vet. I now have Perfect Coat, Natural Oatmeal shampoo for Bailey. I have used it a few times already and it seems to work great. I do have a few questions?
1. How often can I bathe Bailey without being worried about drying out her skin?
2. Are all dog shampoos safe (tearless) if they do get in their eyes?
3. If the answer to #2 is no, are there any dog shampoos that are safe?
Having a dog doesn't mean that they own a piece of your heart, it means that they own all of your heart. ~ Robin Hall.
I'm sorry, I don't have any answers to your questions, but just want to say I'm glad you brought this up! I've noticed that as a breed it seems that poodles seem to get bathed an awful lot more than a lot of other breeds. I'm not to sure on necessity or just that poodle people like/or are willing to do a little more on the grooming end than some other breed owners.
I too like to err on the side of less is more. I have been brushing at least once, sometimes twice a day, using a conditioning spray, but really I can USUALLY get a good three weeks or so between actual baths.
My golden retriever is an indoor dog who does spend time on our beds or furniture, usually a little bit each day. People always comment on how he doesn't seem to have an odor compared to other dogs. I brush him decently frequently, but honestly this lucky boy has litterally gone sometimes more than a year without an actual bath! (He's 12 and we've had him since about 10 wks old).
I do have to say I shower him with LOTS of extra cuddles after a bath when he's silky soft!
My aunt breeds and shows cairn terriers, many are champions and she even had the top cairn in Canada in 2001 (I think that was the year). Anyway, some of her dogs had their championships with only 1 or 2 baths in their LIFE (they're young of coarse). She grooms them daily though and they all have properly stripped coats so they are dirt repellant. I remember her saying how she finds way too many people bathe so much that it can almost make them more prone to picking up dirt! But yeah, these are cairns you can't get much farther from a poodle coat
Anyway, thanks again for asking these interesting questions!
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I think every 4-6 weeks is good, which is about as often as you should go to the groomer (or do your own grooming job)
I have a white spoo and it drives me CRAZY when he's not clean... but because we go hiking and he gets muddy almost everyday, I bath him at Least every two weeks... It's probably not that good, but I figure it's no worse than how bad his coat will be if I don't do it. And running through bushers and mud can get a lot of bugs and crap on him... Again, it's totally not necessary though.
I also have an eskie whose losing all his hair (vets don't know why) and basically all the hair left on him is dead so it's not at all soft. I bathe him every week or two and load on conditioner, just so it feels smooth again
Piko & Sawyer <3
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I was reading about this earlier today. "Complete Guide to Dog Grooming" says to bathe a poodle every two to four weeks. The author says that its smooth-coated dogs that you shouldnt bathe too often. A "Q&A" side bar says:
"Why cant I bathe my smooth-coated dog frequently?
Smooth-coated breeds tend to have sensitive skin (although there are exceptions). Too-frequent bathing can deplete the natural oils that give smooth coats their characteristic sheen, so dont worry about bathing your smooth-coated dog more than a couple of times a year unless he gets really dirty.."
I have seen it said many times as Im reading whatever I can about grooming that you should only use dog shampoo because the ph is different.
Last edited by Jacamar; 07-08-2012 at 04:49 PM.
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1. How often can I bathe Bailey without being worried about drying out her skin? I bathe Leroy weekly and he has not had any dry skin. The only reason I bathe so often is to keep up with his hair growth during coat change. His hair is really bad and if I don't bathe/brush/dry often, it gets really matted and dirty. People have suggested to me to bathe him every 3 days to maintain the hair better - so it really depends on your poodle's hair type and lifestyle. Make sure to use shampoo made for dogs.
I find that dogs who need regular grooming are okay with frequent bathing. But some breeds like the double coated ones should only be bathed "when needed" (which is typically like twice a year) because the natural oils help to repel water and dirt. BUT, I've seen way too many heavily double coated breeds looking terrible because the undercoat is so packed that the dog can't regulate their temperature properly. I would take a dog who is "bathed frequently, but properly" over a dog who isn't bathed as often but looks terrible (mainly because people don't brush their dogs).
Also, terriers who are handstripped shouldn't be bathed. They should be bathed only when absolutely necessary. Too much bathing makes their hair soft and not good for stripping the coat. Typically their furnishings are lightly bathed.
2. Are all dog shampoos safe (tearless) if they do get in their eyes? Not all dog shampoos are tearless. If they are labeled "tearless," I would say they are tear LESS, not tear FREE, meaning if the shampoo got into the eyes, it would sting less, or take longer to have an effect. I am still careful when using "tearless" shampoo around the eyes.
3. If the answer to #2 is no, are there any dog shampoos that are safe?
I use Southbark's Blueberry Facial around my dog's face. I've also used baby shampoo without any bad side effects.
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I give my mini a bath every 2 - 2.5 weeks. I use Plum Silky for his body and Les Poochs Tearless Puppy shampoo for his head. Then I use Coat Handler leave-in conditioner twice - rinse it off the first time and leave it in the second time.
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My girls get bathed a minimum of once every two weeks. More often than not, it's at least weekly (and occasionally more than once/week if they get really dirty).
Nova has white legs, and Sookie's are light silver so they show dirt pretty badly. They are my demo dogs (I run a dog training business) and are in the spotlight and out in public a lot. We do a lot of events, presentations, etc. which are indoors in public places and they need to appear clean.
In the summer, we do a lot of outdoor stuff, hiking, swimming (in rivers and lakes) and just in general getting dirty. I think it's better for their coats to be clean than dirty or left to dry with river water and sand in them. Winters here are very wet, so they get rained on and muddy often, so again lots of baths. They also tend to sleep in the bed with me, and I just can't handle a dirty dog in my bed. I feel like poodles that go too long between baths tend to get an oily, nasty feeling to their coat similar to how my own hair feels if it goes to long without a good washing.
I've never had a problem with their skin. I just use a mild shampoo and conditioner and don't have any issues at all. I also supplement with fish oil, which I'm not sure really makes a difference but I do it for the peace of mind, and because it's good for them regardless.
I bathe my two every week; I groom every week so I bathe beforehand. I use an all natural, organic dog conditioning shampoo. I've never had a problem with dry skin and their coats are coming in really nicely, as we are at the tail end of coat change. They're blues, so have lots of dense, coarse hair. I like bathing weekly as they are always in the river, hiking and running through brush...today they rolled on a fish. Yuck!
Most show dogs (the ones with the long, silky coats) are bathed at least once a week and more when they are showing. Poodle hair is more like our hair than it is like other dog fur. It will grow better and be stronger if it is clean.
The key is to use a good quality shampoo that will not dry the hair or the skin. I will let others comment on your choice of shampoo.