Ah, winter. Crisp winter walks, roaring fires and cosy nights in, or for many dog owners its damp walks, muddy paws and the dreaded post-walk ‘shake’ which makes the walls of your home look like a long-lost Jackson Pollock painting. With rain, fog and frost all forming the basis of the long-term weather forecast it’s safe to say that muddy dog season is very much upon us once again. But fear not dog parents, help is at hand with the new Be:Loved pet care range.
Top tips for bathing your dog
Once you’ve managed to wrangle your dog into the bath, shower or sink (or paddling pool for those who don’t want to run the gauntlet of getting their dirty dog through the house!) follow these simple steps to ensure bath time is a breeze.
Step 1) Brush your dog before a bath – matted hair holds water, leaving your dog with irritated skin. Before the bath take the time to gently groom your dog, cutting out matted patches of fur. You may want to consider putting a cotton wool ball in each ear to keep water out, as this helps to prevent ear infections and irritation.
Step 2) Use lukewarm water – Whilst it’s tempting to crank up the heat for a relaxing bath you actually only need to run a lukewarm bath. Dog skin is different from human skin, which means hot water can burn dogs more easily. For large breeds which are prone to overheating, you will want to reduce the temperature even more.
Step 3) Offer words of reassurance & distraction techniques – dogs may like jumping in puddles and ponds but when it comes to a nice clean bath, they suddenly think water is the enemy. Offering quiet word of reassurance can help to soothe nervous bathers. Distractions are also a great way of making bath time more enjoyable. From toys to play with, to the peanut butter head wrap (Google it – it’s ‘unique’ to say the least!) pooches will thank you for your efforts to reduce the stress.
Step 4) Use gentle shampoos & always rinse well – don’t be tempted to reach for your human shampoo as it will be full of chemicals which can be harmful to your dog. Instead use shampoos which have been specially created for dogs. It’s also incredibly important to rinse thoroughly as any soap left in their fur can irritate your dog’s skin once they’re dry.
Step 5) Air-dry – hot air from a human blow-dryer can be too hot for your dog’s skin. Instead towel dry thoroughly and allow your dog to air-dry, ideally in front of the fire where they can snooze post-bath.
Step 6) Reward your dog – once bath time is over, remember to heap praise upon your pooch. A game of tug of war with the towel will make everything seem fun again, or just shower them in hugs and kisses until all is forgiven.
How often should I bathe my dog?
Whilst it’s tempting to bath your dog every single time they get dirty, this is not recommended. Not only would a daily wash be hugely time consuming but too much washing could strip the natural oils out of your dog’s coat, causing avoidable skin irritation. Save bath time for really dirty days, and when the ‘sniff test’ delivers less than desirable results. It’s also important to consider the type of coat your dog has. A general rule of thumb is:
The inspiration for Be:Loved came in the form of an old family heirloom: a farmhouse recipe book. Be:Loved’s founder’s father-in-law and his wife, both farmers and stock people, used the recipe book to create farmhouse fare when they had no money – using nothing but what they could find in the hedgerows or from nature’s harvest. Together they compiled a treasure chest of recipes – from soaps and shampoos to help farmers clean grubby hands and paws, to moisturising balms for callouses – and absolutely everything was natural. It is these recipes that have been reimagined for our four-legged friends to create an effective and luxurious range of British, hand-made products to help care for and delight pets and pet-parents alike.
Be:Loved makes bath time a pleasure for all
Be:loved prides itself on only using natural ingredients, so much so that it tested every single one its handmade products on the Be:Loved team – after all, if it’s good enough for us then it’s definitely good enough for our beloved pets!
Be:Loved handmade, 100% natural shampoo bars (RRP £5.00) make it super easy to bath dogs post-walk. The shampoo bars are designed to be applied directly to wet fur to help gently create a lather which will assist in removing dirt while gently nourishing your dog’s coat and skin. Be:Loved offers four shampoo bars to choose from, helping pet parents to make the right choice for their dog’s individual needs:
Be:Clean – perfect for dogs that can manage to find the stinkiest thing possible to roll in! Featuring essential oils and natural growth-boosting green tea, this antibacterial shampoo bar provides a glossy clean coat, a fresh fragrance and helps to keep lice and bacteria at bay.
Be:Bugfree – packed full of a 100% natural blend of neem oil and insect-repelling citronella, Be:Bugfree is perfect for those dogs that enjoy long walks in the countryside and are more susceptible to bug bites and stings.
Be:Vegan – this soothing and calming shampoo bar is perfect for those pet parents that practice what they preach when it comes to living a true vegan lifestyle. Be:Vegan is packed full of naturally calming ingredients including vegan hemp and chamomile, making it the perfect choice for a range of skin issues including dandruff, eczema or rosacea.
Be:Calm – with the calming scent of lavender and extra moisturising goat’s milk, Be:Calm is the perfect way to help your pet unwind after a long day exploring.
Bath time is also a great time to check your pet over for any cuts or grazes. Whilst washing, gently feel their skin and joints for any issues you may not have noticed before. If a little TLC is needed post-bath then reach for Be:Safe, First Aid & Ache Nose & Paw Balm (RRP £8.00). Formulated with a natural blend of essential oils and moisturising beeswax, shea butter and Vitamin E, this balm is designed to soothe minor injuries, like scratches and grazes, and alleviate the discomfort from stings and bites. Simply apply to paws, noses and anywhere else that’s been in the wars.
If you don’t have time for a wash, then Be:Loved’s skin and coat oil rub (RRP £20.00) is the perfect alternative whilst on the go. The enriching and conditioning blend of natural botanical oils and essences, including Grape Seed, Lavender, Vitamin E, Sweet Almond and Rose, help to create a fresh, healthy and silky coat. Massaging the oil can help to improve circulation, as well as helping to calm over excited holiday companions and helping to soothe those dogs that love holidays but hate the travelling to get there!
All Be:Loved products can be purchased directly www.wearebeloved.co or join the Be:Loved community on Instagram by following @belovedpetz
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