I am happy to spend hours and hours training my dogs, but grooming is just not my thing! And I am sure there are many people who would say just the opposite. One of the reasons I choose to live with short-haired dogs is because I prefer to spend as little time as possible on grooming. That is one of MANY reasons I chose the Vizsla breed when we brought home Romeo. Because his hair is so short, we really do not need to brush him. Stickers never get caught in his coat. And, up until last week (May 2013), we really have never had any need to give him a full-fledged bath. We “spot clean” him as needed, but regular bathing really has not been necessary for him.
Then last week, we were out on our usual walk and he wandered off into the scrub oak just off our property onto the 1100 acre ranch next door. We thought he was just following a scent as usual until he returned caked in green slime. Eeewww!!! Clearly, a full-fledged bath was in order upon our return to the house.
My husband was going to hold him in place with a leash and just force the bath to happen regardless of how much Romeo wanted to avoid it. While we could have done that, I did not want to make his first official bath one that he would have very bad memories of for a long time to come. Instead of holding him down with a collar/leash, I found some new treats I had just bought that he’d never had before. While my husband bathed Romeo, I fed a steady stream of tasty organic chicken treats.
I did not need to hold him in place on leash. The treats held him in place. He was not particularly thrilled at the bathing – after all, this is a dog who does not want to go out to potty when it’s raining! Water coming down from above is something he will avoid whenever possible. But the treats made it worth sticking around.
So the next time he finds something really nasty to roll in, bath time will not have any traumatic memories associated with it. How does your dog view bath time?