Grooming the Muddy & Stinky Dog

Tips for Cleaning Your Mud-Caked, Stinky Dog

Your dog is having the best time out there in the rain! Isn’t it cute the way he’s leaping around like that? But wait—before you let him back inside for his well deserved treat, you might need to do some mud control.

A muddy dog can easily create a housecleaning headache. A shallow pan of water or a small child’s swimming pool just outside the door can double as both a rehydration unit (read: great big water dish) and a paw-cleansing device. Keep a kitchen or bath scrub brush and a towel by the door, and train your dog to stand in the pan or pool for a few seconds before coming inside. Lift each paw, give it a light scrub, blot with the towel, and then let your dog inside. If this seems like too much work (although how much more work is it to clean your carpet every time it rains?), keep a container of baby wipes by the back door.

Dogs with heavier coats will clean up more easily if you keep their paws well trimmed. For mud and dirt on your dog’s coat, the best remedy is to let it dry first. Many dogs, especially those bred to work outdoors, tend to shed dirt from their coats easily as soon as it dries. If you and your dog can wait it out after a mud-puddle bath, a good shake and a few swipes with a brush can leave your dog’s coat looking spotless.

You know that look they get when they smell the smell: the irresistible scent that simply must be ground into their coats by rolling ecstatically all over whatever it is (you probably don’t want to know). That’s when you know you’re going to be faced with some stink management.

Those handy baby wipes you keep by the back door can get rid of the smell. Wipe down your dog, concentrating on the stinky area. Or try a dry spray-on shampoo that brushes out, until you can get your dog into the tub for the real thing. If the stink obviously comes from a skunk, you will need to take more drastic action. Products specifically made for removing skunk odor work best, like NuHemp Omega Zapp Skunk Odor Conditioning Shampoo.