May 20, 2022

How Often You Should Bathe Your Dog

How Often You Should Bathe Your Dog

The frequency of dog bathing is a question we get often. The answer depends on many different factors including your dog’s breed, skin health, type of coat, length of coat, and your pet’s favorite activities.

Dogs In Treatment with DERMagic

Bathe every 2-4 weeks

When your dog is in treatment with the DERMagic System, we suggest bathing a little more frequently than others (every 2-4 weeks). This is for no other reason than we are trying to remove old, dead skin cells and an overgrowth of yeast.

Our shampoo (both liquid shampoo and our shampoo bars) have a slightly higher pH than other shampoos. That makes our shampoo bars some of the best in the business!

Dogs Who Have Finished DERMagic Treatment

Bathe every 4-6 weeks

Part of the way we keep your pet’s skin healthy is to remove yeast and dirt through our shampoos and conditioners.

As we mentioned, our shampoos are a slightly higher pH than others. They are designed this way for a reason - the yeasty dog needs help keeping yeast in check.

If your dog is prone to yeast, alopecia x, black skin disease, hot spots or other skin conditions, you’ll want to continue with our shampoos and conditioners every 6-8 weeks throughout their life.

But, what if your dog isn’t in treatment and doesn’t have existing skin conditions? Well, we have some answers...

How often to bathe dogs

Double Coated Dogs

Bathe 2-3 months

Double coated dogs have a unique hair structure. Their coat consists of two layers. Double coated dogs have a dense undercoat of short hairs (wooly in texture) under a top coat of longer hairs called “guard hairs”. If your dog tends towards a “fluffier” look, it usually means they are double-coated. It also means you’ll have some fairly major grooming responsibilities throughout their life.

These types of dogs usually “blow” their coat a few times a year. This means lots of fluffy flurries floating through the house on any given day. To contend with this, they may take their dogs into a groomer to let them deal with it (highly recommended). You should never allow your groomer to shave these types of dogs. It can harm their coat, create major skin conditions, and actually stops the dog’s natural cooling or heating defenses.

Our solid Shampoo and Conditioner bars are ideal for these gentle giants! Make sure you pick up some Hot Spot Salve for summer time swimming days. These dogs are prone to hot spots that are hidden by their thick fur. 

Most spitz-type dogs have double coats, as do several small-breed terriers that have a wiry soft top coat. Examples of double-coated breeds include:

  • Akita
  • Bernese Mountain Dog
  • Cavalier King Charles
  • Collies (Border)
  • Chows
  • Corgis
  • Great Pyrenees
  • Havanese
  • Huskies (Siberian and Alaskan)
  • Newfoundland
  • Pomeranians
  • Retrievers (Golden and Labrador)
  • Schnauzer (Miniature)
  • Shepherds (German and Australian)
  • Sheepdogs (Shetland)
  • Shiba Inu

Drop-Coated dogs

Bathe monthly

Drop-coated dogs have long, silky coats that hang flat over their body (often reaching the floor). These coats feature one hair per follicle, meaning they often tend to shed a little less than other breeds. However, these coats take a lot of regular grooming to maintain.

Their coats usually require a very gentle shampoo and soft brushes. Their fur is susceptible to breakage, and other damage. Slack off on the daily grooming, and the fine hairs can get tangled and wrapped up in shorter hair, causing painful mats and tangles.

One of our favorite hacks for removing mats is the use of cornstarch, but our favorite method is using DERMagic's incomparable Skin Rescue Grooming Spray.


Smooth-Coated and Short-Coated Dogs

Bathe every 2-3 months

The easiest dogs to care for when it comes to grooming are sports dogs. It’s a good thing, because they are in the water so frequently! These dogs have fur that tends to repel water, which helps them easily navigate bodies of water during swims.

The frequency of bathing depends on where they like to swim and how often they are jumping in the pool. Frequent bathing is not great, as it strips the natural oils from their fur. So choose a gentle shampoo and plan on bathing every 2-3 months.

If your dog prefers a pool for swimming, you’ll want to make sure there is no chlorine left on their coat as it can cause dryness and even discoloration. A quick rinse with clean water will do wonders after they leave the pool!

Examples of short-coated breeds include:

  • Doberman Pinscher
  • Greyhound
  • Labrador Retriever

Medium-Coated Breeds

Bathe every 3-4 months

Dogs with medium-coats have very similar fur as the easier to groom short-coated breeds. Their fur is usually an inch or two long and stands a bit off from their body. They tend to look a little fuller, but still sleek.

These dogs will rarely need baths unless you need to give them one for hygiene or a skin condition. However, they will require frequent brushing to help distribute the oils over their fur.

Examples of medium-coated breeds include:

  • Border Collie
  • German Shepherd
  • Golden Retriever

Long-Coated Breeds

Bathe every 1-2 months

These beautiful dogs have fur that can reach the ground and love showing off their flowing locks in a breeze. But, don’t let their effortless beauty fool you - these coats require a LOT of work!

Baths become more frequent as their fur collects all manner of debris in the course of a day. They must be brushed daily and bathed every 1-2 months.

Unkempt coats result in massive tangling, painful mats and more.

To keep your pet's fur silky smooth for weeks, we love DERMagic Conditioner bars

Long-coated breeds include:

  • Afghan Hound
  • Shih Tzu
  • Yorkshire Terrier

Wire-Coated Breeds

Bathe every 2-3 months

Wire coated dogs (also called “broken coated”) feature rough, coarse fur that helps keep their skin protected from activity. These dogs not only don’t shed much, their coats naturally repel dirt. On top of all that, they are naturally hypoallergenic, rarely shed and their handsome coats offer a special layer of protection while out hunting or walking through rough terrain.

However, their coats may occasionally require hand stripping. Hand stripping is a process that helps remove older hairs that are in the “exogen” stage and leave the healthier hairs that are “anagen” phase. This should only be done by a professional groomer who has experience with wire-coated breeds.

Wire-coated dogs are historically bred for chasing small animals (rats, rabbits, gophers, etc.) through underground burrows.

These beautiful dogs require very little in the way of bathing. At most, a bath every 2-3 months is plenty (and less frequent is better). Their rough fur will be stripped should you engage in frequent washing, as it can strip the natural oils and dry out their fur.

Examples of wire-haired breeds include:

  • Chihuahua (wire haired)
  • Cocker Spaniels
  • Dachshunds (Wire Haired)
  • Pointers (wire-haired)
  • Schnauzers
  • Terriers (Border, Kerry Blue, Jack Russell, West Highland, Wire Fox)
  • Wolfhounds (Irish, Scottish Deerhound)


Bathe every 2-3 months

We all love these (mostly) hypo-allergenic dogs! If you’re not a fan of hair all over your home, a curly coated breed may be perfect.

Curly-coated breeds have hair ranging from soft waves to tight curls. Because the type of curls varies, there is no single way to groom them. Professional grooming for this type of coat is usually necessary as some are kept in tight clips, others in a loose wave, and even others prefer cords!

As professional groomers are generally required for these dogs, it’s a good idea to let them select the perfect gentle shampoo.

Examples of curly-coated breeds include:

  • Bichon Frise
  • Bolognese
  • Bouvier des Flandres
  • Havanese
  • Komondor
  • Poodles
  • Puli
  • Spaniels (Irish Water, American Water)
  • Retrievers (Curly-coated)
  • Terriers (Airedale, Bedlington, Kerry Blue)
  • Poodle
  • Water Dogs (Portuguese, Spanish, Romagna)


Bathe every 1-3 weeks

They aren’t 100% hairless, but do have a soft, downy, very fine fur that covers their body. If you hate to vacuum and dust, and despise brushing dogs, the hairless dog may be for you! While their overall grooming is a lot less labor-intensive, it’s important to find a gentle, all-natural shampoo for them.

They will require baths more frequently than other breeds. They will also require lots of extra clothes during winter and protection from the sun during summer.

You may also want to include our Solid conditioner bar in your grooming plans. This bar helps keep your pet’s coat and skin in top condition! They may also benefit from our all-natural Cell Restoration Creme during dry winter days. 

Hairless breeds include:

  • American Hairless Terrier
  • African Hairless
  • Chinese Crested
  • Hairless Chihuahua
  • Jojangi
  • Mexican Hairless
  • Peruvian Inca
  • Xoloitzcuintle