Pitbulls are a breed of dogs known for their boundless energy and playful nature. They love to chase things and have fun while rolling around and getting down in puddles and dirt. So, maybe the frequency of your dog's activities, have got you thinking "How often should I bathe my Pitbull?"
On an average, dogs should be bathed at least once a month, although this rule varies depending on certain factors, like the breed of your dog, the type and length of its fur, how much activity it does, frequency of time it spends outdoors, how much hair it sheds and the amount of its natural oil synthesis.
Pitbulls produce a lot of natural oils that serve to protect and line their outer skin and fur, they possess short fur and shed an average amount of hair per day. So, when dealing with Pitbulls, one might not need to bathe them as frequently as one would for other breeds.
Pitbulls shouldn't be bathed more than a single time in a month and as infrequently as six months before the next bath.
Now that you know how often you should bathe your Pitbull, let’s talk about the things you need to know before bathing your Pitbull.
When it comes to bathing your Pitbull (or any dog breed for that matter), it is always best to be informed and to know what to do and what to expect, this is important if you wish to make the experience pleasurable for both yourself and your dog.
Bathe time doesn't have to be dreaded or be a drag, rather it should be something to look forward to. The following tips would help achieve this:
1. Mentally prepare for the task:
Pitbulls are naturally playful, hence when bathing your dog you would want to be firm and authoritative, let your dog know that it's bath time and not playtime, show your dog that you are in charge.
It is also advisable that you allow your dog to get accustomed to bath sessions from when it's still a puppy so that it wouldn't be strange or turn into a war as it gets older, bigger, and definitely stronger.
2. Getting the right resources:
Having the right resources before bath time is a sure step closer to success. Supplies like extra towels, a good bathtub, brush, and shampoo would be essential.
Pitbulls should not be bathed using regular human shampoo, in fact, no pet should be. This is because some of the ingredients contained in your regular shampoo might react with their fur and skin and some might even be unsafe for their health.
Hence, before getting a shampoo for your pitbull, ensure you look out for any ingredients that you believe might be harmful to your dog.
I've written a review on the best shampoos for Pitbulls in the market (opens in new tab).
You should also follow carefully any instructions written, for example, most shampoos usually have water to shampoo ratio, to which it must be diluted. Also, ensure to contact your vet before changing your dog's shampoo and also before using a new shampoo for your pitbull.
3. Keep water away from your Pitbull's eyes and ears:
When bathing your Pitbull ensures you do not allow water to enter its eyes or ears, as their ears contain delicate tissues and membranes that are susceptible to ear infections when wet.
Therefore, ensure your Pitbull's ears are dry throughout the bath.
You might be wondering;
"How then do I keep my dog's ears clean?"
Well, that's easy, you can mop your dog's ear with a clean, dry ball of cotton wool. Also ensure that when doing this, you use the right proportion of cotton wool, as you do not want cotton balls slipping into your dog's ear canal causing more damage, simply because you used too little.
4. Ensure to have a pre-brushing session before bathing:
Although Pitbulls have very short fur as compared to other dog breeds, still regular brushing and combing should not be excluded.
Brushing your Pitbull's coat is important in keeping their fur healthy and preventing it from getting heavily matted.
Combing your Pitbull's fur before a wash would ensure it isn't excessively tangled, as a tangled coat would lock in moisture and not dry quickly, causing irritation reactions in your dog's skin.
It is recommended that you brush your dog's fur as often as several times within a week, some dog owners choose to do so daily which is perfect, as brushing ensures their dog's coat effectively synthesizes natural oils that serve to protect them from germs and diseases.
5. Remember to be gentle:
When bathing your Pitbull you would want to be gentle and cautious in your approach. Your dog can sense when you're anxious, they can tell when you're confused and unsure. Hence, you would want to remain calm throughout the whole process, even if you're uncertain.
Other tips to consider before bathing your Pitbull
Your job as a dog owner should be to make wash time as fun for your dog as possible, let it be something it looks up to and not something it fears.
You can do this by keeping treats and rewards handy to offer your dog after bathing it, this would help relieve its anxiety and help your dog get over its fear of baths.
You can also consider fixing bath time to after a just-concluded strenuous exercise or a long walk. This would ensure your dog is too exhausted and tired to resist and also sweaty enough that a nice, cool bathe would be cheerfully welcomed by your canine.
Also, ensure to properly set the temperature of the water, as you want the bathe to be relaxing. Ensure the water is not too hot and not too cold, but warm enough. Ensure to rinse off any trace of shampoo on your Pitbull's body as this might cause a nasty reaction with your dog's skin.
Pitbulls are wonderful pets and have nice, lovely looking coats.
As a Pitbull owner, you would want to help your dog maintain its fur to maintain its appearance and also because its fur acts as a boundary to protect your dog against diseases and infections from outside.
You might want to contact a dog behaviorist if you notice that your Pitbull gets overly aggressive and resistive whenever you try to bathe it, to help you understand how to safely approach and handle your dog in such situations.