How to Wash a Long Haired Dog

15 - 30 Minutes
3 Months


No one truly looks forward to giving their long-haired pooch a bath. The good news about this is that most long-haired dogs like Fabio rarely need to be bathed more than a couple of times a year. Be sure to check with your vet to see how often you should be bathing Fabio. Keep in mind, bathing him too frequently will strip his skin and coat of the natural oils they need to remain healthy. Of course, no one ever said bathing a long-haired dog was going to be easy. There will be tangles and mats to deal with, along with a heavy accumulation of dirt. That all has to be removed, making the job that much more challenging. 

Dog's Perspective

Being brushed is the last thing your dog Fabio wants to deal with. That is with the exception of being bathed. But, when you put the two of them together, he is really not going to be very happy with you. No matter what Fabio thinks, you must get the mats out of his coat. Leaving them in can lead to serious skin sores and infection as they continue to rub his skin raw. 

Caution & Considerations

  • Brushing Fabio's coat daily will help keep it from becoming tangled or matted. You may want to make this a regular routine in order to cut down on the maintenance you will have to do on mats later. 
  • Check with your vet to see how often you should be bathing Fabio. Over-bathing him can lead to dry skin problems. 
  • Never use any product intended for use by humans as they contain ingredients that may be harmful to your dog.
  • Use cotton balls to block your dog's ear canals and keep out the water but do not shove them too far into the ear as they can get stuck or leave cotton debris behind.
  • If necessary, you can use petroleum jelly to protect Fabio's eyes. A small amount will provide adequate protection. 
  • Have everything you need at hand before you start, this way you don't have to leave Fabio alone in the tub.
  • If Fabio likes to struggle at bath time, try taking him for a long walk first to get rid of any excess energy. 


Bathing a dog with long hair can be quite challenging. The best thing you can do to make it easier for both of you is to keep his coat brushed on a daily basis. Not only will this help keep tangles and mats from happening, it helps to remove debris rather than letting it build up. Take your time! There's no reason to rush and Fabio will learn to appreciate bath time with enough care and patience. 

Success Stories and Grooming Questions

Book me a walkiee?
Sketch of smiling australian shepherd