I can never get my dog upstairs to get a bath. How can I stop this unwanted behavior?

Bri BBri B Posts: 1,300Member
I always make sure Buckeye doesn't know that he is getting a bath, but somehow he figures it out. I say "Come on Buckeye, lets go upstairs!" or something else in a fun tone. He just knows when he is getting a bath, though. He refuses to even move towards the stairs. Even if I get him up there, it's nearly impossible to get him in the tub. He weighs over 45 pounds, so it's very hard to pick him up. I don't want to hurt him, either. How should I make bathtime fun? I use treats, make sure the water isn't too hot or cold and try to get him to relax. He just hates the water. What can I do to help Buckeye get a little more relaxed when it comes to bathtime?

Best Answers

  • Linda MatthewsLinda Matthews Plain cityPosts: 6,859Member
    Accepted Answer
    For our little guy he hates being clean he likes to roll in pee, bugs and fish. So for this little one of mine for the last 9 yrs. I run the tub to the right level before even getting him. And for you , you might want to start feeding him in the bathtub before the water comes along. Place a big towel in the bottom so he doesn't slip. The water, the soap and the slipping is things that might make dogs afraid. I also now have a 90 lb dog who is terrified of water. I do the same thing to her to condition her that the tub is the good place to eat. She is the hardest to bathe when I can't do it outside. Imagine a 90 lb quivling baby who is stronger then me in most ways and trying to keep her still and better yet, in the tub at least :) try the food thing. no water and just make a game out of it, don't forget to treat big time right away after the bath have it ready for him when he gets out, let him eat as you dry :)
  • Liz HardersenLiz Hardersen GranbyPosts: 5,862Member
    Accepted Answer
    Well I'll be no help at all.... Pepper loves to swim in the pool and can't wait for her knee surgery to be healed enough to swim. But if I put her in the tub, she cries like I'm killing her! I decided she gets washed well enough by rain and in the summer she does swim so thats enough. We have 2 places near us that offer do-it-yourself dog washing. They let you use all there stuff for $20. But you wash and dry your own dog. Maybe there is a similar service near you?
  • Richard AtchesonRichard Atcheson Northern USAPosts: 3,570Member
    Accepted Answer
    Treats, coaxing, etc. may help. I seldom if ever bathe a dog. I rely on brushing every day with a soft bristled brush to control dirt and odor. More pleasent for both man and beast.
  • Tiffany MitchellTiffany Mitchell IOWAPosts: 6,792Member
    Accepted Answer
    What about taking the bath outside. Try a baby pool. See if you can get him to enjoy it there, then slowly move it back inside. :)
  • LaVonne MenzelLaVonne Menzel Posts: 53Member
    Accepted Answer
    Put a rubber mat in the tub. Towels don't work, they float around scaring everybody. 1. You get in the tub & run the water while standing. Swish it around while it's filling to 3-5 inches. 2. Call Buckeye with a piece of jerky in your hand. Let him see you eat it slowly and say 'yum'. Take your time. 3. Let the water out and sit on the edge of the tub with your feet in. Say 'come on, Buckeye' (gently, patting your knee). DO NOT pull or use force. 4. Run the water again while sitting there with feet in the tub. Say 'come on, Buckeye' and take a bite of the jerky. Say 'yum' 5. Turn off the water. Get out of the tub and walk away until another day. Repeat these steps everyday until he comes. DO NOT give him any jerky until he's in the tub. Coax him with love and let him trust you. This should work. This is what my humom did to me and now I'm not afraid of the tub. What made me afraid was the sound of the water in the pipes. Very high pitches hurt my ears. Good luck!
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