Whether your dog is an Afghan with a flowing coat of silky fur, a pug with a no-nonsense short do, or a even a Chinese Crested with just a dab of hair, they all have one thing in common when they meet water –WET DOG SMELL!
With all the rain we’ve been having here in St. Pete, it’s a question we’ve been dealing with over and over, “Why do you smell so bad?!” Poor Chloe gets her feelings hurt and sulks in her bed until she dries out and is allowed to mingle in society again, but just why “wet dog smell” happens is enough to make anyone go hide in a corner!
According to the American Chemical Society, the odor emanating from your wet dog comes from tiny microorganisms like yeast and bacteria that live on the fur. It’s the waste that these excrete that release their scent in the air when they become wet. That’s right, it’s moist micro-poo that’s making your dog reek! And another bonus of living in Florida: heat and humidity can have a compounding effect on the odor, making the scent more concentrated. Imagine if we think our dogs smell bad, how much more their 220,000,000 olfactory receptors are assaulted by their pungent odor. It’s a good thing dogs actually like things that humans think smell bad! But for the rest of us, here are a couple of things we can do to lessen the stink:
- Bathe your dog at least once every couple of weeks (or bring them to Northeast Animal Hospital or Pets in the City and we’ll do it for you!)
- After towel drying well, use a blow dryer set to “warm” and thoroughly dry your dog’s coat
- Use one of the many organic coat freshening sprays made especially for dogs
- Remove odors from dog bedding by adding 1/4-1/2 cup of white vinegar to your wash load
- Sprinkle baking soda on your carpets at night and vacuum in the morning