To Bathe, or to Groom?
I have been asked by some readers and clients whether grooming or bathing at home is best for your pet. The tried and true answer here is that it depends on the dog in question. Some dogs require more grooming in order to maintain the proper cut style for a particular breed. Find a list of those particular breeds here. However, you may still need to do a wash between grooming, so here are some helpful tidbits.
Personally I prefer to bathe short haired dogs at home, they do not require much in the way of cuts, therefore bathing at home is perfectly fine. If you can make it fun, it can be an enjoyable time for you and your dog. It also creates a perfect time for bonding with your pet. Dogs do not care if they are clean, and actually prefer to be dirty and stinky, and if they think that they can get out of bath time by acting a fool, then they most certainly will act a fool to avoid that particular case. Cesar Milan has great pointers on how to make bath time more enjoyable for both you and your pet.
Choosing the right shampoo
Choosing the right shampoo also depends on the type of dog you have, the type of fur on that dog, the color of the fur on the dog, and the skin type of the dogs your are bathing. So many things go into selecting the proper shampoo for a dog. One of my dogs has super short hair, dry skin, and has allergies to certain products. Therefore I have to be very careful as to what products I use or feed to him. He is prone to bacterial infections of the skin which then require antibiotics 2 times a day for 3 weeks to get cleared up (we have yet to determine what causes this on him). I found a list of the top 10 dog shampoos which I am happy to share with you, however, I have never heard of any of them in my 7 plus years of #dogboarding or #petsitting.
Should you condition your dog?
Again we can start with my opinion on the matter, I would say that any dog with long hair you should use a conditioner on. The ones that come to mind the most are Golden Retrievers. Having the long beautiful coat is a signature of the Golden Retriever and you always want them looking their best. However, they are also on the list of dogs who require the most grooming, so if you have a GR you may be better off taking them to the groomer. However, between grooming, if you need to give a bath, conditioner is recommended by this blogger!