Dogs often develop dry skin as well as intense itching due to factors such as flea infestation, allergies, exposure to poison ivy etc. you will know your dog is itchy if it keeps scratching, licking, and chewing at its fur. Oatmeal has an outstanding reputation among humans for its soothing ingredients. This begs the question, “is an oatmeal bath good of bad for dogs?” This article takes a look at the benefits of, as well as how to make a homemade oatmeal bath for dogs.
Oatmeal Bath Benefits For Dogs
Video: How to Make an Oatmeal Bath for a Dog : Dog & Pet Care
Many pet owners bathe their dogs in oatmeal to soothe their skin. This is because oatmeal has natural ingredients that benefit a dog’s skin in several ways:
- Oatmeal relieves itchy and irritated skin in dogs: Perhaps the most popular use of oatmeal baths in dogs is to stop itching. According to TheNest.com, oatmeal has naturally occurring avenanthramides and phenols which adds a protective film on a dog’s skin. This film helps to balance your dog’s skin pH and soothe itchy skin.
- Oatmeal combats dry skin: Factors such as harsh shampoos, weather changes, undegrooming, mange, deficiency in omega 3 fatty acids, excessive bathing, and underlying conditions such as lupus and diabetes can cause dry skin in dogs. An oatmeal bath can benefit a dog with dry skin by adding a layer of protective polysaccharides.
Where to Buy Oatmeal Bath for Dogs
An oatmeal bath is the cheapest way to get rid of itchy skin in dogs while rehydrating their skin naturally.
One option is to buy commercial colloidal oatmeal product such as aveeno. Although intended for use by humans, Aveeno is also beneficial and safe for use in dogs. It is made of oatmeal that has been premade for easy dissolving in water.
There are a well numerous sprays and shampoos that include oatmeal as one of the ingredient. Some good examples of oatmeal shampoos for dogs are AvoDerm Natural Oatmeal Formula Shampoo for Dogs and Cats and Only Natural Pet Herbal Defense Shampoo.
You can buy these products on a pet supply store near you. You can also check the availability of these products on Petco, PetSmart, Walmart, and Amazon.
Still you can use whole, uncooked oatmeal to make an oatmeal bath for your dog at home as explained in the next section.
How to Make a Homemade Oatmeal Bath for Dogs 1,900 with Dry or Itchy Skin
Making an oatmeal bath for dogs at home is really easy and is a fantastic option to buying commercial oatmeal baths, sprays and shampoos. There are various ways in which you can make and use a natural oatmeal bath for your dog at home. These are discussed below:
Video: Get Silky Soft Skin! With Young Living's Oatmeal Bath Soak with Lavender Essential Oil
Oatmeal Soak for Dogs
- Pour 1 cup of whole, uncooked oatmeal into a blender or food processor. Ideal oatmeal should be sugarless, unflavored, and devoid of fruits or other ingredients often added into oatmeal.
- Grind the oatmeal until you achieve a powder with a flour-like consistency.
- Fill your bathtub or a wide bucket with tepid – not hot – water to the level of your dog’s chest. Make it around 70 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit, but you can make the temperature a bit lower if it is a hot summer day.
- Pour the fine oatmeal power into the bathtub, then stir the water thoroughly to mix it well. Extend your hand all the way to the bottom to ensure thorough mixing, or get a large stick or spoon to your aid.
- You may want to place a non-slip bathtub mat at the bottom of your bathtub to combat the slippery tendency of oatmeal.
- Get your dog in the tub and soak her for 5-10 minutes while talking to or petting the dog to make her comfortable. Ensure the oatmeal solution reaches her back and hand- use your hands or a jar to scoop the water and pour it on these areas. Don’t let the water enter the eyes, nose and mouth.
- Don’t rinse the oatmeal solution out after the 15 minutes of treatment. Instead, just dry your canine’s skin with a towel. The oatmeal will leave behind a protective layer that soothes the itching.
- Finish off by brushing your dog’s fur with an appropriate brush immediately before the skin and coat dries out completely. This will help to remove excess fur, dead skin, flea eggs, and any other solid debris.
Oatmeal Rub for Dogs
An alternative to the above oatmeal bath for dogs is an oatmeal rub. This is ideal for dogs that get very nervous or uncomfortable if soaked in oatmeal solution. As the name suggests, this method involves rubbing the oatmeal into your dog’s skin as opposed to soaking your dog in an oatmeal solution.
- Mix ½ cup each of plain, uncooked oatmeal and water. Both instant and regular oatmeal will do.
- Stir the mixture until it gets well blended, with a gooey consistency.
- Transfer the mixture into a clean old sock, cheesecloth, or stocking, then tie either end tightly with a rubber band or thread.
- Apply warm water over your dog’s skin and fur with the help of a cup or bowl.
- Rub the oatmeal-stuffed cloth on your dog’s skin in gentle circular motions. Pay attention to the area of your dog’s skin that seem to be particularly itchy.
- After 5-10 minutes of rubbing the oatmeal in, rinse your dog’s skin lightly with warm water. Pat her dry with a towel.
Epsom Salt and Oatmeal Bath for Dogs
Epsom salt is also beneficial in soothing itchy skin in dogs as well as reducing the swelling that often accompany itchy paws e.g. due to fungal infection. Epsom salt also helps to fasten the healing process of any open sores e.g. from excess scratching caused by allergies. To make an Epsom salt and oatmeal bath for dog itching and other problems, follow the steps below:
- Fill a tub with warm water.
- Add 1 cup each of Epsom salt and ground (blended) oatmeal, then stir thoroughly to mix the ingredients thoroughly.
- Place your dog in the bathtub and apply the solution all over her skin.
- Avoid pouring the solution into your dog’s mouth as Epsom salt can cause diarrhea in dogs when swallowed.
- Rinse your dog’s skin lightly with warm water, then pat the skin dry with a towel.
Baking Soda and Oatmeal Bath for Dogs
Baking soda is also an effective remedy for itching in dogs. It works by balancing the pH of the skin. You can simply make a paste by mixing baking soda with water, then apply it all over your dog’s skin. For an extra itch-fighting and rehydration action, however, you can mix baking soda and oatmeal into a bath as follows:
- To a cup of ground oatmeal, add 2 tablespoons of baking soda.
- Apply enough water to make a gooey paste.
- Massage the paste onto your dog’s coat, then leave it to dry naturally.
- Finish by combing your dog’s coat gently with an appropriate brush.
These oatmeal baths for dogs are not only effective but also very cost effective, not to mention easy to use.