Your Goldendoodle's coat seems to trap "stink," and you're not quite sure what to do about it. It seems that you no sooner get Fido home from the groomer's when the familiar unpleasant smell begins to waft up to your nostrils. What is it about your Goldendoodle that makes him stink, and what can you do to prevent it? There is no doubt that certain breeds' coats are more prone to attracting and trapping odors than others. Yet trying to imagine living the next 12-15 years with that smell is far less than appealing. Do all Goldendoodles stink, or is it just your dog?
The Root of the Behavior
The Goldendoodle was originally bred to satisfy the desire for a family friendly dog with a hypoallergenic coat. The Golden Retriever contributed his happy, affectionate nature to the cross while the Poodle is responsible for the Goldendoodle's coat type. However, as with all breeds, genetics come into play. There is no guarantee that a Goldendoodle will inherit the Poodle's coat type in any given breeding. Because of this, the dog cannot truly be labeled as "hypoallergenic." A Poodle's coat is generally better tolerated by people who suffer from allergies; however, allergic reactions have more to do with dander common to all dog breeds than coat type. So, what is it about the Goldendoodle's coat that makes it stink? Getting to the source of the stink can be challenging indeed. There are a number of reasons why your Goldendoodle's aroma is far less than satisfying to your senses. If you are bathing your dog yourself, it may be your technique that is to blame. The Goldendoodle's inherited Poodle-like coat makes it more prone to attracting and holding debris and odors. The coat type desirable for its reduced shedding and dander emitting qualities is the same coat that traps and holds unpleasant smells. A downside, for sure.
Encouraging the Behavior
The Goldendoodle's glands emit an oily substance which helps to protect the skin to keep it from drying out. However, these oils can begin to stink if allowed to linger on the skin. To help eliminate this problem, it is important to choose a shampoo that is appropriate to the task. When the product has been properly massaged into the dog's skin, care must then be taken to thoroughly rinse any remaining shampoo from your dog's body. The oils become trapped in the shampoo residue. Any lingering remnants will emit an unpleasant odor. The frequency of bathing also comes into play. Your Goldendoodle has much higher grooming requirements than your average dog. The typical Goldendoodle requires bathing approximately every three weeks to minimize any odor issues. Bathing more frequently can lead to skin irritations while less frequently leads to increased unpleasant smells. Skin infections can also play a role in an odor-infested Goldendoodle's coat. Yeast infections are particularly pungent and difficult to stomach. If your Goldendoodle still smells "ripe" even after a bath, a trip to the veterinarian may be in order to rule out potential skin issues.
Of course, the smell might not be coming from the coat at all. It could be that your Goldendoodle has a problem with gas. Since most dog flatulence appears undetected, your dog might be having difficulty properly digesting his diet, resulting in excess gas. If the problem is persistent, a change of diet may be in order. The Goldendoodle's shaggy appearance is part of his charm, but sometimes there are "will nots" that become attached underneath all of that scruff. To help eliminate odors from poop remnants, it is important to examine your dog's anus for any particles that need to be removed. It is easiest for you and for Fido if you simply use shears to snip the offensive materials out. Some dogs also have difficulty expressing their anal glands. This odor is unmistakable and particularly noxious, but more than that, it is uncomfortable for your dog. If you sense a particularly fishy smell, anal glands may be to blame. If not properly expressed, overly full anal glands can become impacted and infected. A trip to your local veterinary clinic is required to help your dog find relief from this unpleasant situation.
Other Solutions and Considerations
Because of the nature of the Goldendoodle's floppy ears and his love of water, ear infections can be a problem. If you see your dog shaking his head or engaging in frequent itching, an ear infection may be to blame. Ear infections are generally evidenced by a thick, black waxy substance in the outer ear area. They also emit a powerful smell. Because of the depth and sensitivity of the ear canal, it is crucial that you never insert an instrument into it. Ear infections require proper cleaning and antibiotics which must be prescribed by your veterinarian. Bad breath can also contribute to unpleasant smells emanating from your Goldendoodle. A simple visual check can assist you in determining if it is time to break out the toothbrush and toothpaste for a little "oral attention." In cases of extreme tartar buildup, a dental might be necessary.
Your dog's diet can also play a role in his smell. Digestive issues often result in dull, dry coats which can be more prone to attracting and holding odors as well as foul breath and flatulence. Goldendoodle breeders also share that certain dogs within a pedigree may bear stinkier coats than others. If a stinky Goldendoodle is bred to a non-stinky Goldendoodle, chances are quite high that at least a few of the puppies in the litter are going to be stinky as well. There can be a strong genetic component to this olfactory problem. If your Goldendoodle is a lover of water and has regular access to it, this will also contribute to the presence of foul smells. Allow your dog to enjoy water play but follow it up with a bath and blow dry to keep him smelling fresh and clean.