Fill the tub with warm water. You will only need to fill it high enough for your dog’s legs to get wet. Do not fill it high enough for your dog to put his head in the water. Have your shampoo and towels within arm's reach so you do not leave your dog unattended near the bath water.
Place cotton balls into each of your dog's ears to protect the ears from water. If your dog has ear infections, you do not want to get his ears wet. You can clean his ears outside of the tub without water, but while he is in the tub, protect his ears from getting wet.
Wet down your dog with a cup and warm water or use a handheld shower to get your dog wet and ready for washing. Do not wet down his head if your dog has ear infections. Keep the cup or handheld shower close to your dog’s body to avoid getting any water splash back in his ears.
Use a wet and wrung out washcloth to wipe your dog’s face. Be gentle when washing his face and head. His ears will be sensitive and tender to the touch. Be careful when handling his head, especially behind his ears.
Use dog shampoo to wash your dog’s body. Lather shampoo over his entire body except for his head. Be cautious cleaning his neck and shoulders, and be sure to avoid touching his ears or getting water in his ears.
Use warm, clean water to rinse the shampoo off your dog. Use the same cup or handheld shower for rinsing. Again, keep the water close to the skin and avoid splashing your dog’s ears. Also be cautious of touching the ears as they may hurt.
Dry your dog with a towel. He may shake excess water off before you can remove him from the tub. If this is the case, place a towel over him while he shakes this water off. Be careful of his ears as he shakes. Once your pup is towel dried, remove the cotton balls from his ears.
If it is necessary to clean your dog’s infected ears, use a cleaning solution approved by your veterinarian. Your dog might be prescribed a solution, or your veterinarian might request using a small amount of apple cider vinegar and water. Wet a soft cloth or soft paper towel with a solution and wipe the inside of your dog’s ears. If a rinse is required, the solution will have a long tip bottle.
Place the ear solution long tip bottle into the ear canal and squeeze solution in the ear. Lift and gently pull on the ear to open the canal. If your dog will allow, massage the solution into the ear. If this is painful, follow your veterinarian’s recommendations or let it settle on its own. Let your dog shake the solution out as he sees fit. This will loosen any debris and help clear infection.