How does she smell? Awful!
December 12, 2022 7:46 AM   Subscribe

My little princess (tax) comes home from day care smelling like she rolled in pee all day, almost certainly because she rolled in pee all day. We shouldn't bathe her every week, so what to do in the meantime? What's Febreze for dogs?

The internet says we should only be bathing her once every few months, but some weeks she comes home from day care smelling too ripe to tolerate! If you have a dog who gets stinky, what are you doing? Wipes? Sprays? Noseplugs? She hates the pet wipes we have and they don't do enough to be worth the hassle, but if there are really effective pet wipes (or if there's a technique trick to it that I don't know) she can deal.
posted by babelfish to Pets & Animals (12 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Talk to the day care, see if they can help at all. Even female dogs mark, though less than males. I would bathe her weekly and use some sort of leave-in conditioner mid-week. She'll produce more skin oils to compensate. Or wash her with ordinary conditioner instead of shampoo every other time.
posted by theora55 at 8:14 AM on December 12, 2022 [1 favorite]

A tax I am happy to pay :)
posted by falsedmitri at 8:15 AM on December 12, 2022 [1 favorite]

A search for 'dog perfume' on your retailer of choice's website should offer up some options; pet scents tend to be primarily aimed at deodorising, rather than making your pet smell different in the way that human scents are intended to do, though there seem to be different scent options on offer so you might have to experiment to find one that smells good to you & doggo.

Olive is absolutely gorgeous btw...
posted by terretu at 8:24 AM on December 12, 2022

Best answer: There's nothing wrong with bathing her weekly or even more often, assuming she doesn't have any major skin conditions/health issues with special instructions from the vet. Just use a gentle shampoo, or if you prefer, rinsing with water is totally harmless (but not sure if it would be enough for pee smells). We give ours a thorough rinse or bath weekly or more this time of year due to excessive muddiness and haven't had any issues.

I don't think any wipes or perfumed sprays etc will be enough to mitigate pee smell and they may cause more skin irritation than a bath would anyway. Just bathe your smelly princess and don't worry about the internet unless your specific dog has problems with frequent baths.
posted by randomnity at 8:25 AM on December 12, 2022 [10 favorites]

I have had decent success with the Nature's Miracle deodorizing bath wipes. In my case the issue was a dog on prednisone with kidney issues - she was leaking urine on her own bed and laying in it, but it was also highly diluted because of the steroids so I don't know if the wipes would be as helpful with more concentrated urine smells.

The wipes are small and I had to use several each time, so it's not the most cost effective, either. Baby wipes might be cheaper and just as effective; I'm not sure if there was really anything particularly "deodorizing" about the Nature's Miracle ones.
posted by misskaz at 8:42 AM on December 12, 2022 [1 favorite]

Caveat that I'm literally one week into puppy ownership, but these wipes took the edge off* both her pee smell and after she stepped in her vomit (puppy is fine, back to her cheery zoomy self, her tummy just got too empty this morning after she had an early dinner last night). She also has a long double fur coat, which I'd think would make them less effective, but not sure.

*In addition to being new to dogs, I'm coming off a wicked sinus infection and have just started to smell again. I don't think it's back to 100%, so even though the wipes improved the smell I'm not positive it's fully resolved and she'll get a full wash of at least her paws later today.
posted by ghost phoneme at 8:49 AM on December 12, 2022

My dog rolls in some really nasty stuff and I've found Wahl Waterless No-Rinse Dog Shampoo to be super effective in deodorizing the doofus quickly.

Lather on, dry off with a towel. It's a coconut-lime scent which is really nice. And it's compatible with his poodle/doodle haircoat without making things all matted up.
posted by JoeZydeco at 9:21 AM on December 12, 2022 [2 favorites]

Best answer: Is the limit on baths because of a skin condition or other medical issue she has? Or is it just general advice about what’s good for most dogs? Because if it’s the latter, bathe her weekly with a clear conscience and just keep an eye on how she seems to feel, any changes in her skin/itchiness, etc. (Honestly, even if she has a medical reason for limiting baths, ask your vet whether you can give her a rinse more frequently, or if there’s a gentler shampoo you could use.)

There’s no good reason to suffer through “I rolled in pee” smell (or “I rolled in pee and then my humans spritzed me with something, so now I smell like pee and perfume”) just because people on the internet say not to bathe your dog frequently. You’re trying to take your responsibilities as a pet owner seriously, and that’s really good—bathing is something you can approach with a balance of what’s best for the dog and best for the humans who love her.
posted by theotherdurassister at 9:58 AM on December 12, 2022 [4 favorites]

The doggie daycare used wipes before I picked my dog up from her weekly visit and she was definitely less stinky without the commitment to a bath. It's certainly worth a try.
posted by paradeofblimps at 10:43 AM on December 12, 2022

I don't wash my dog every week either, but that's mostly because I am a horrible lazy person. I think you can totally get away with more often but I am really here to preach the gospel of the red berries and champagne dog shampoo. This stuff is amazing. It can deodorize a dog who has rolled in dead sea lion intestines and still leave his fur silky smooth. Try that and see if your sweetie doesn't stay sweet smelling longer.
posted by mygothlaundry at 12:59 PM on December 12, 2022 [1 favorite]

I am always wary of highly scented products around animals- I don't like heavy fragrances myself, and their noses are so much more sensitive. If you can't bathe these unscented wipes by Vetnique are pretty good. If they are ineffective there is Dog Odor Off spray or drench, which has a scent but we only use it when things are desperate.
posted by oneirodynia at 2:18 PM on December 12, 2022

Not a dog owner, so I am a little baffled that a daycare sending your dog home covered in pee is just a thing that can't be helped?

Because that's the first thing I would do, ask them, hey, have you notice my dog rolling in pee/getting peed on/is there a way to make that less likely? Maybe there's not, but that would sure take a lot of the good out of getting my dog playtime for me.

I did have a dog that loved to swim in the canals behind my house and came home smelling of dead fish frequently so he got weekly baths. He was fine.
posted by emjaybee at 10:06 PM on December 12, 2022 [2 favorites]

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