How often should I bathe my Cavapoo?

how to bathe and wash your cavapoo
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    Peppa pig has nothing on our Cavapoo, because when it comes to finding muddy puddles, digging up flower beds or rolling around on the grass, Rosie is one “mucky pup”.

    Factors such as coat condition, skin disorders and levels of dirt will determine how often your Cavapoo needs to be bathed. As Cavapoos have coats like Velcro, it’s important to bathe them regularly in order to maintain hygiene and grooming standards. 

    A Cavapoos coat can be straight, wavy or incredibly curly depending on the genes they have inherited.

    If your Cavapoo has a curly coat that grows relatively long, then they will require quite a bit of upkeep. But just like humans, too much bathing can be just as harmful as not bathing enough, as dogs need to build up a level of natural oils in their fur and skin in order to keep them healthy.

    cavapoo puppy having shower

    Which Cavapoo coats require the most bath time

    Do Cavapoos smell? To be fair, there is no getting away from the fact that most dogs pong! But for the majority of people, this smell is inoffensive and unless their fur is visibly dirty then a wash is not required.

    What will determine how often your Cavapoo needs a bath are factors such as:

    • Fur thickness – depending on how much Poodle your Cavapoo has inherited, will depend on their fur type. Some Cavapoos have coats which are double layered and prone to matting. If you are finding that you are constantly having to cut or brush out matts from your Cavapoos coat, then read our ultimate guide to dealing with matted dog hair for some useful tip and tricks.
    • Coat length.
    • Lifestyle – outdoor or indoor living.
    • Activity levels – some dogs are quite sedentary by nature, whereas others love nothing more than going on a long run, bounding through woods and swimming in lakes and rivers.

    Depending on the above, some owners will choose to bathe their Cavapoos 1-2 times a month, whereas others may only require a clean a few times per year.

    towel drying cavapoo

    At what age can I bathe my Cavapoo puppy?

    Exposing your puppy to the world teaches them what to expect in certain situations. And, just like all initial experiences, your puppy’s first bath should be a positive one.

    Although it is always best to start desensitizing your puppy when they are still young, you should hold off bathing them for at least the first 8 weeks after they have been born. Up until this point they will have been regularly washed by their mum and her scent will be smothered on their coats.

    If you do need to bathe your puppy before 8 weeks of age, then we would recommend just giving them a light sponge wash to spot clean any dirty areas. But remember that puppies have trouble regulating their body temperature, so if they need a bathe, be careful to ensure that they do not catch a cold and that you use a puppy shampoo only.

    Best Place to bathe a Cavapoo

    For puppies and small Cavapoos you can simply plop your dog into the sink or laundry basket – which is exactly how we gave Rosie her first bath. Just be careful to adjust the temperature beforehand so that they are not scolded or likely to get a chill.

    Nowadays, however, we bathe our 4 month Cavapoo in the shower or bathtub, as they both have detachable nozzles which allow us to get to all the difficult undercoat areas.

    If your dog is filthy and you do not want to bring them through the house, then a garden hose will work just as well, providing it is sunny outside.

    Equipment you need for bathing a Cavapoo

    Most dogs are not big lovers of being bathed, so it important that you are well-prepared beforehand. This will allow you to wash them quickly, safely, and most of all calmly providing you have the following items close to hand:

    Self-cleaning pin brush on Amazon that we use for our Cavapoo.

    How to bathe a Cavapoo

    So just how do you bathe your Cavapoo correctly? It can be tricky trying to wash a wriggly, wet dog so here are our top tips for bath time success.

    1. Brush their fur beforehand. Although some baths may come as a total surprise, we recommend trying to brush your dog’s fur beforehand. This will help prevent mats and tangles from occurring.
    2. Create a comfortable setting. Simple things such as adjusting the temperature to suit and ensuring that there is a non-slip mat for them to stand on, will make your dog feel less anxious during their bath.
    3. Use a dog-friendly shampoo. Some shampoos can cause skin reactions which is why you should only apply dog specific products to your Cavapoos coat. These gentle shampoos are rich in vitamins, soft on the skin and help to keep coats beautifully clean and healthy. And as an added bonus, most of them smell divine too. If you are in any doubt about which shampoo to use on your Cavapoo, then we have lots of review guides to buying the best product. From Anti-Itch to Hypoallergenic and Antibacterial dog shampoos, you can be sure that you are using the best shampoo for your dog.
    4. A gentle knead is all it needs. Try and resist the urge to rub the shampoo vigorously into your dog’s fur as this can cause tangles. Instead, lightly knead and massage the coat, keeping your Cavapoo calm at all times.
    5. Remember to rinse thoroughly. As your Cavapoos coat is curly, you need to make sure that the shampoo has been thoroughly rinsed away. Leaving even the slightest smear of soap can cause itchiness.
    6. Avoid the eyes and ears. To avoid getting shampoo in your Cavapoos eyes and ears, we recommend that you start from the head and work your way systematically down their body.
    7. Dry your dog as quickly as possible. It is essential that you dry your dog thoroughly and as quickly as possible as damp, warm fur come be a breeding ground for many fungal infections. And remember that dogs love to shake, so if you don’t want to be splashed you should stand well back!
    8. Brush and brush again! It is just as important to remember to brush your Cavapoos fur after their bath as it is beforehand. Brushing when wet not only helps to prevent tangles and mats but will assist with getting rid of the dander that comes from shed skin cells and any excess dog’s fur beforehand. This will help prevent mats and tangles from occurring.
    9. Create a comfortable setting. Simple things such as adjusting the temperature to suit and ensuring that there is a non-slip mat for them to stand on, will make your dog feel less anxious during their bath.

    And remember, bathing your Cavapoo isn’t just good for their hygiene, it’s also an excellent chance for you to look out for any unusual scratches, lumps, bumps, fleas, ticks or abnormalities. All of which are much easier to spot when their fur is wet and flat against their bodies.

    clean cavapoo puppy
    The end result – nice clean and fluffy Cavapoo puppy!

    When only a professional groom will do

    Professional dog groomers are a must for certain breeds of dog – including Cavapoos.

    Although a good at-home grooming and bathing regime can keep mats and dirt at bay, a professional groom will ensure that your dog’s coat looks healthy and remains at a sensible length.

    A professional grooming session typically consists of your dog being brushed, bathed and dried, as well as trimmed or clipped. They will tackle the areas that most dogs hate such as over the eyes, at the tips of the ears, and on the bottoms of the feet. They will also cut your Cavapoos nails and often brush their teeth and have lots of tried-and-tested techniques for making even the most bath-averse Cavapoo behave.

    Just like people, Cavapoos coats continue to grow so a professional groom every 8-12 weeks will really benefit their overall health and wellbeing.

    products used for bathing cavapoo
    Some of the products we use for our Cavapoo, including Puppy Love puppy shampoo and a lick mat for during the bathing.

    Conclusion

    Although most puppies and dogs enjoy the bathing process, even if they don’t, it is important that they learn to tolerate them as quickly as possible to ensure that their coat remains in a tip-top condition.

    The amount of bathing required for your Cavapoo will be determined mainly by its coat and skin type. If you are unsure how often to wash your dog, then you should seek advice from your veterinarian or a grooming professional, who will determine the most appropriate routine for you.

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