Home Dog Grooming How to Wash a Dog’s Face

How to Wash a Dog’s Face

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Grooming your dog at home can save a lot of money, and your dog will definitely feel more comfortable. You probably know how to bathe and brush your Fido, but do you know how to wash a dog's face properly? Keeping your pup's face clean is an important part of his care and will aid in his overall health and well-being.

No one wants to pet a dog with a dirty, smelly coat. While washing your pet's body is quite simple, things get more delicate when you need to wash your dog's face. Getting soap in the dog's eyes, nose or mouth could cause pain or make him sick. You need to be especially careful when cleaning the dog's face.

How to Wash a Dog's Face

Trimming Facial Hair

1. Trimming Facial Hair

Before you begin to learn how to wash a dog's face, you may need to consider trimming the hair around his eyes and muzzle. If your dog has long face hair, trimming it is a matter of hygiene and safety.

The hair on your dog's face could irritate his eyes if left untrimmed. If allowed to grow long enough, hair could poke your dog's eyeball, causing scratches or eye irritation, which can then lead to eye infections.

Dog's facial hair also makes it much easier for dust, dirt or debris to get into your dog's eyes. Finally, if you don't trim face hair on your pet, it could result in the development of tear stains.

To trim hair on the dog's face, I recommend using scissors. Clippers move too fast, which could ultimately injure your pet.

How to Wash a Dog's Face

2. How to Wash Your Dog's Face

Grooming wipes are my go-to tool for dog facial cleaning. The right wipes will cleanse and freshen the fur on your dog's face without causing any irritation. If you don't have grooming wipes on hand, you can also use a clean cloth and a little bit of dog shampoo.

To make a cleansing solution, add a couple of drops of dog shampoo to a small bowl of warm water. Mix the solution and use a clean cloth to wipe down your dog's muzzle.

Wipe over and around the dog's eyes with a dry cloth. Using a grooming wipe or a cloth saturated in the dog shampoo solution, wipe down the muzzle and the top of your dog's head without getting too close to his eyes or nose. If you are using a dog shampoo solution, rinse it off by wiping the face/head down again with a cloth saturated in clean water.

You could also use waterless shampoo to wash your dog's face. Apply the waterless shampoo to the face with a clean cloth. You won't need to rinse, but you can wipe down the pet's face and head with clean, dry cloth to remove any excess waterless shampoo if you need to.

How to wipe dog tear stains

3. Tear Stains

Epiphora is the veterinary term for excessive tear production. It's the most common cause of tear stains in dogs. One misconception about epiphora is that tear stains only occur in light colored breeds. That is not true, because many other breeds can also get tear stains around their eyes.

If you dog suffers from tear stains, they can be quite difficult to remove. You can purchase commercial tear stain remover at your local pet store or make your own homemade tear stain remover. For recipes and information on how to clean these blemishes from your dog's face, you can read my guide on removing dog tear stains.

Learning how to wash a dog's face isn't difficult, but you do have to be cautious. If you have questions or would like to watch a professional tackle the task, ask a professional dog groomer for some tips and tricks.

Best Grooming Wipes to Wash Dog's Face and Tear Stains

The easiest way to wash a dog's face is with pet grooming wipes. They contain ingredients that will effectively clean the dog's face, remove dirt, debris and bacteria, yet not harm the dog in any way. Like baby wipes, they're usually pre-soaked and very convenient to use. Below are some of my favorite grooming wipes for washing dog face and tear stains.

READ NEXT: How To Train A Dog To Enjoy Grooming and Stay Calm

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