While the family felines spend a good part of the day grooming, dogs depend on us to keep them smelling fresh and clean. Dog odor can send even the most passionate canine fan running for fresh air.
If your favorite pooch rolls in the garden mud, animal poop, or dirty water, gets caught in the rain, or just hasn’t had a bath in a while, the doggy smell is the result. But it’s something that can be eliminated and prevented with a little help.
Typical reasons that cause a dog to smell include:
- A lack of grooming
- Environments such as a backyard, garden, or other
- Bad breath or dental disease
- Dirty ears and ear infections
- Skin allergies
- Being wet
Masking the doggy smell is never a good idea. Generally, the reason your pet smells is because it isn’t clean, so spraying canine perfume on top of a dirty dog will not eliminate the smell. It may make it worse, and the smell will emerge despite the fragrance.
Doggy perfumes may not be appreciated by your dog either. Dogs have incredibly sensitive noses and much stronger olfactory talents than humans, so what may smell pleasant to you may be terrible for your pup.
If you do want to use a fragrance on your dog after bathing, be sure that it is formulated specifically for use on canines. Some canine freshening sprays will not only help with odor but will condition your pup’s fur coat as well.
Bathing Is Best
Regular bathing is the best way to keep dog odors at bay. If your pooch tends to be smelly, opt for a dog shampoo that has deodorizing capabilities such as those containing baking soda which is known to absorb smells. When bathing, leave the shampoo on for the amount of time recommended by the manufacturer. You do not want to over bathe a dog as this can lead to dry skin and other problems.
If you are unable for whatever reason to give your pet a wet bath, opt for a dry bath. You can acquire a doggy dry shampoo or use a home remedy. Apply baking soda for a rapid dry solution. Corn starch can be used as an alternative. You can also rinse your dog’s fur with vinegar to remove smells without washing. Once the vinegar has dried, your pooch should be odor-free. Add two cups of white vinegar to four gallons of water and rinse thoroughly right down to the skin. Dry your pup without rinsing off the vinegar.
Another option is wiping your pet down with pet wipes that can remove superficial gunk and debris from your pet’s fur coat, neutralizing smells.
Be sure to clip nails regularly and coats as needed including hair growing between toes or paw pads. Clean your pet’s eyes gently with a soft moistened cloth when crusting appears.
In Between Baths, Brush Fur, Teeth, and Clean Those Ears!
Bathing is not your only option when it comes to keeping your pet smelling fresh. Regular, if not daily brushing will remove dead hair, dirt, and grime that can cause odors. Cleaning your pup’s ears will also help. Breeds with long ears may develop a yeast-like odor if ears are not cleaned weekly.
Dental care including brushing those pearly whites will help with bad breath and general health. Teeth with plaque buildup will smell. Also supplement teeth cleaning with dental sticks, chews, and bones.
If your pet suffers from flatulence, you’ll smell it. If this is more than an occasional occurrence, reconsider what you’re feeding your pup. Dogs and cats, just like humans, can develop food intolerances and have lots of gas as a result. Sometimes pets have difficulty digesting a specific protein like beef or perhaps chicken. Even if your pup likes the taste, the digestive tract is reacting if there is a lot of gas.
Flatulence causes include:
- Low-quality dog food
- Food containing lactose
- Pet treats
- Eating food too quickly
You may want to consult your veterinarian to determine what the cause of gas is and the best diet for your pup.
Invest in a high-quality diet, occasionally including raw meat and appropriate vegetables and fruits. Fresh parsley added to food can help with odors.
Change the Bedding
Regardless of where your pet sleeps, bedding should be changed regularly as you would your own. This will aid in preventing odors, as dust, dirt, dead hair and skin cells, parasites, fungi, and debris can accumulate in a pet bed.
Visit the Veterinarian
Occasionally an unpleasant odor emanating from a pet may indicate an underlying health problem. If your pet smells, visit your veterinarian for a complete exam and relate the odor problems. Your pet’s doctor may want to run further tests to identify physiological causes for your pet’s smell.
A Final Wag
Remember that dogs do not sweat as we do. They perspire at the hair follicles and paws. Their perspiration has a unique scent that only other animals will perceive. Pet skin also carries microorganisms like yeast and bacteria that when combined with environmental factors can create odors. With a little bit of care, quality food, and regular visits to the vet, your pooch will be smelling fresh and sweet in no time.