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Old 04-10-2014, 09:28 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default how to get my dog not scared of taking a bath?

He's 1 years old and he's terrified of taking a bath. I would have to drag him in and get someone to help me hold him down into the tub. He hates it! Its not like the water is extremely cold or anything.. He tries his hardest to get out and its getting very tough to hold him back since hes about 72lbs.. Now he's scared to even go in the bathroom! What should I do?
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Old 04-10-2014, 09:35 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Woolf doesn't hate baths, he will tolerate them. What he does hate is the tight space. The last bath we attempted with him in the bathroom, he said enough, came out of the tub, took me down and I ended up with a bruised ego and pulled back. That was with DH holding him in the tub and he still came out.

We both decided the stress on him just wasn't worth forcing the bath in the tub. Kiddie pools are good for more then just play - works great for baths. In the backyard during warm months, during winter we use the garage.
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Old 04-10-2014, 09:39 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Woolf doesn't hate baths, he will tolerate them. What he does hate is the tight space. The last bath we attempted with him in the bathroom, he said enough, came out of the tub, took me down and I ended up with a bruised ego and pulled back. That was with DH holding him in the tub and he still came out.

We both decided the stress on him just wasn't worth forcing the bath in the tub. Kiddie pools are good for more then just play - works great for baths. In the backyard during warm months, during winter we use the garage.

Thanks i will try that, but he seems to be scared of going near lakes also. We took him on a trail and there was a lake , all the other dogs were playing in the water while Hunter just stayed back and close to me not wanting to go near the water..
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Old 04-10-2014, 09:51 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Does Hunter have ball drive or like to tug? If so, go in the bathroom and tug or tease him up with the ball and have him jump in and out of the tub(no water) get him use to the tub first.
I have a hand held shower attachment which helps.
After he's desensitized to the tub turn on the water when he's in there and let him get use to the sound. Play with the ball in the water, but don't bathe him. Eventually he should see that there is nothing harmful or scary in the tub or the water.

My male was fearful of the tub at first, but got over it instantly when a ball appeared. He loves baths, I think having the shower attachment helps, the dogs love the massage feature.
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Old 04-10-2014, 09:54 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Yikes. I can not keep mine out of water lol, onynx has a great idea if all else fails, dry shampoo??

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Old 04-10-2014, 01:36 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Does Hunter have ball drive or like to tug? If so, go in the bathroom and tug or tease him up with the ball and have him jump in and out of the tub(no water) get him use to the tub first.
I have a hand held shower attachment which helps.
After he's desensitized to the tub turn on the water when he's in there and let him get use to the sound. Play with the ball in the water, but don't bathe him. Eventually he should see that there is nothing harmful or scary in the tub or the water.

My male was fearful of the tub at first, but got over it instantly when a ball appeared. He loves baths, I think having the shower attachment helps, the dogs love the massage feature.

he loves to play tug of war and play with balls but once the rope were playing with or ball passes the line into the door he lets go and backs up! There's no way getting him in there unless he is picked up (which is impossible for me) even with his favorite treats he will not go in there!
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Old 04-10-2014, 01:39 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Try getting a small kiddie pool and fill it with just an in or so of water. Toss in some hot dog pieces and see if he will go in and get them.
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Old 04-10-2014, 01:46 PM   #8 (permalink)
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I had this problem with Yogi also. He's 7 months and 75 pounds and I found that if I get in the bath WITH him, it helps a lot and he'll tolerate the bath. Of course, I look like Chewbacca when he's done but getting the hand attachment has helped tremendously.
This was a selfie I snapped right after his bath a couple days ago (first bath since he was 9 weeks):
*-*Summer*-*
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Old 04-10-2014, 02:30 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Onyx has some great advice above.

I usually wash my dog with a hose in the driveway. It works great in warm weather. The only problem I had was that Maddie LOVED the hose and wanted to chase and bite the stream of water. I had to work with her a bit so she would stand still while I washed her down. She was never thrilled by this but she tolerated it.
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Old 04-10-2014, 02:53 PM   #10 (permalink)
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I assume there is a large mat in the bottom of the tub so your dog hasn't experienced slipping and sliding as he tries to get in and out...sometimes slippery surfaces like a bathtub gets the better of some dogs.

I give my dog a bath/shower with me in the shower/bath....don't know if that is weird but there is no struggle on behalf of my current dog. My previous 2 GSDs were a bit leery of going into the bath/shower but once they were in and the sliding door closed they were fine.

On a side note...why do dogs after they are bathed have this compulsion to do victory laps around the house or yard after they are done? I can't imagine they are trying to dry themselves off as they do not exhibit the same behavior after getting out of the pool or lake.

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