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How Often Should You Bathe a Dalmatian? (Top Bathing Guide)

Grooming is a very important part of any dog’s life, and the requirements change drastically depending on the breed. Dalmatians are in fact a very hygienic breed which definitely impacts how often they should be bathed.

Bathing once every 3 or 4 months is best for most Dalmatians. Bathing at this frequency will keep them clean and odor-free while preserving the coat and skin’s natural oils.

Why Dalmatians Don’t Require Frequent Bathing

Many other breeds also require minimal bathing, and there’s a good reason for it.

By only bathing your Dalmatian 3-4 times per year, you avoid the risk of removing too many natural oils from his skin and coat.

This is critical because it’s these natural oils that protect against dirt and keep his skin and coat healthy and clean in the first place.

The number one reason dog owners visit the vets is due to skin issues: with dry skin topping the charts. And you guessed it, one of the main causes of dry skin is over-bathing.

By having too many baths, he’ll lose his natural oils and will make him vulnerable to dry skin, dandruff, itchiness, irritation, and bad odor.


Dalmatians Are a Naturally Hygienic Breed

Much how like cats keep themselves clean, certain dog breeds do the same.

You may not have noticed until now, but your Dalmatian is regularly licking and inspecting his own coat on a daily basis.

If you have two dalmatians, it’s likely that they even help each other in the spots that they can’t get to themselves. Yep, it’s true!

On top of all of this cat-like behavior, the natural oil that lightly covers his single-layered coat will make it very hard for dirt to properly stick to it.

Once the dirt has dried it will fall off with ease, either from your Dobie scratching, moving, or when you brush him.

This is original content produced and published by The Puppy Mag.

Recommended: How Much Exercise Does a Dalmatian Need?

Is Regular Bathing Ever Recommended?

If you live somewhere with hiking trails, forests, or you have muddy land where your Dalmatian exercises, he’s likely getting dirty most days.

If this is the case, it’s perfectly fine to bathe him more regularly, as long as you skip the shampoo (most of the time)

Ideally, it’s best to clean his coat with brushing alone (once mud and dirt are properly dry) and you may find that brushing does the job very well.

If you need to bathe him as often as every two weeks, then it’s important to leave out the shampoo on a few occasions. Shampoo used at this frequency will likely remove too many natural oils.

The Importance Of Using Natural Dog Shampoo

There are so many different options when it comes to bathing dogs. If you look online, you’ll see people recommending super-strong shampoos filled with chemicals, all the way to using Dawn washing up liquid.

The only shampoo you should use on your dog is a natural ingredient dog shampoo (organic if possible). Nothing else.

➡️ Our favorite option for years has always been: ⭐ 4Legger Natural Ingredient Organic Aloe Vera & Coconut

All-natural options do not contain nasty chemicals, parabens, soap or detergent, alcohol, and the list goes on. All of those harsh ingredients may do a great job at cleaning, but it’s not safe or healthy!

The biggest issue with “regular” shampoo is that the harsh ingredients strip far too many of the natural oils out from the coat and skin. This leaves the skin dry, sensitive, itchy, and it encourages skin issues.

What’s worse, is that his body’s response will be to suddenly produce A LOT of oil, to make up for what’s just been stripped.

This leads to an excess of oil which only contributes to further irritation, a dirty-looking coat, and a bad odor. Exactly what shampoo is supposed to stop.

Always use a natural shampoo that contains no chemicals, detergent, soap, or alcohol. Here are a few good options for you to check out. Honeydew, Wahls, and 4Legger.

Helpful Bathing Tips

Let’s run through some helpful bathing tips that will make every bath time effective, efficient, and safe.

1. Always brush before starting

Dalmatians only have single coats, and they’re super short, so it’s important to use the right kind of brush.

Slicker brushes are the most appropriate for short-haired dogs, and they do a great job. The thin wires are short and will only penetrate just enough to thoroughly comb through this single coat.

By brushing before bathing you can remove any excess dead fur. Yep, Dalmatians shed too!

A quick 5-minute brush will make the overall grooming experience more complete and will add to a better-looking coat once he’s dry.

2. Use room-temperature water

It’s very tempting to use warm water, but it’s much safer to use room-temperature water only.

The warmer the water the more likely it is that his skin will dry out after the bath. There’s also an increased risk of your Dalmatian suddenly getting too cold if he goes from warm water to the outside temperature.

Where you live and the outside temperature is something important to be aware of too. Unless it’s a very hot summer day you should ideally keep your Dalmatian inside until he’s properly dry.

During the winter months, it’s recommended that you avoid bathing altogether. The chance of your Dalmatian getting too cold afterward is too high.

3. Talk to your Dalmatian throughout the bath

Some dalmatians like water and some don’t.

If your Dalmatian doesn’t like water or is afraid of bath times, a simple trick to help keep him calm is to constantly talk to him in a happy and reassuring voice.

This is very effective and will make the whole process more enjoyable and stress-free for both of you.

It’s really important to make bath times a positive experience that your Dalmatian enjoys. If you do, it will make the next time so much easier.

4. Use peanut butter as a distraction

If your Dalmatian is REALLY petrified of bath times, try smearing a spoon of peanut butter around a dinner plate and setting it down as you start bathing.

Nothing beats peanut butter, and as long as it doesn’t contain Xylitol and salt. It’s considered safe for dogs. Source (AKC)

Your Dalmatian will be completely distracted for a good 5-10 minutes while you are able to thoroughly bathe him and get a thick lather going.

Before he knows it, the whole process will be finished. And the best part of it is that he’ll look forward to the next one!

5. Don’t let him air dry

It’s always best practice to dry him as much as physically possible with a clean dry towel, over letting him air dry.

Even when it’s not that cold outside, your Dalmatian can still get too cold if he’s wet. Avoid this by patting him dry, and keeping him indoors for another 15-20 minutes.

If it’s a really hot summer day, you should still pat him dry with a towel, before letting him outside in the sun.

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It’s best to only bathe your Dalmatian once every few months, or only when truly necessary. Overbathing will remove too many natural oils leading to further problems like dry skin and a greasy coat.

Any kind of natural ingredient dog shampoo is best for dalmatians. Avoid using regular pet shampoo, human shampoo, or anything else. Most of these shampoos contain harsh chemicals that do more damage than good.

With frequent brushing and the occasional wipe down with a baby wipe or grooming wipe, your Dalmatian will remain clean for a long time. You can’t replace bathing entirely, but you can certainly increase the time in between following these tips.

Dalmatians are a naturally hygienic breed that engages in a lot of self-cleaning activities. Dals will lick their coat and keep themselves relatively clean. Combine this with frequent brushing, and Dalmatians require infrequent bathing.

Last Thoughts

So there you have it! Try your best to only bathe your Dalmatian when he absolutely needs it or stick to the recommended frequency of 3 to 4 times per year.

It’s important to limit bathing because this reduces the chances of drying out his coat and skin. Dalmatians are a very naturally hygienic breed and will do a great job of keeping their coat clean themselves.


Before making any decisions that could affect the health and/or safety of your dog, you should always consult a trained veterinarian in your local area. Even though this content may have been written/reviewed by a trained veterinarian, our advice to you is to always consult your own local veterinarian in person. Please read our full dislcaimer if you have any questions.