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Work them Pet Bulls!
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all,

I have a new pup who is just about 5 months old. I am having trouble with her growling in the bath tub so obviously she doesn't like it. She is otherwise a sweet girl. How do I curb this behaviour? This was only her second bath ever. Thanks!!
 

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How are you reacting to it?

My boy hates baths with every fiber of his being but he's never, ever growled at me or even curled a lip for making him take one. He just tries to guilt me by looking as sad and pathetic as possible.

Have you tried to get her to like baths in steps? Have her stand by the bath, yay, treats and praise. Have her stand up on the side of the bath, yay, treats and praise. Etcetc baby steps.
 

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I am with k8kane, treats treats treats. Do you have a tub? I would give her treats once she gets in the tub (no water) so she isnt nervous about going into the tub or the bathroom. After a few days of treats in the tub I would maybe put the water on when she is in it or around so she isnt scared of that. My puppy hates warm baths, he only likes cold bath (weirdo, lol) maybe the water isnt right.

Growling is kinda a weird reastion. My dog sometimes makes a noise people think is growling that didnt start til he was 7 months or so. He is really kinda snorting/snoring but he is fully awake! aybe its something like that?

Where did you get him, could he have been forced into water or baths before you?
 

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My dog has never growled but also puts that I want to die face on.but I just put my face close to her and assure her I would never hurt her.and she is getting a lot better as I bath her.
 

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Mine have never growled either. They will stand and try to catch the water when I am in the shower, but when you try to get them in the tub they do the dead dog drop and go limp. Trying to lift a 75lb and a 120lb dog is hard. I found giving them a shower outside with a house to be the easiest or I take them to a pet store that has a doggy tub where they walk in and you deposit quarters to wash your dog, then dry it the same way during the winter months.
 

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Work them Pet Bulls!
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks all. I keep a thin nylon collar on her in the tub so when she would do it I would give her a little tug and a firm "no". She was the last one left in a litter of 8 and I just got her about 10 days ago. So she will be 5 months old Jan. 23rd. She hasn't been the most socialized pup because of her long stay with the breeders. They gave her lots of love, house broke her, and taught her some basic commands but could only socialize her to a certain extent (they live in the country). I have been socializing her like crazy and we are starting obedience classes next thursday night. I was a professional groomer for over 10 years and have been growled at many of times by other peoples dogs but never my own. When she was growling it made me question her temperament. She is otherwise very friendly,sweet, and mellow. She never had a bath before when she was with the breeders so hopefully we can overcome this eventually. I will talk to the trainer thursday night and mention it. I will also try the treat thing :)
 

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Don't correct the growling. The growling is a valuable warning that she's uncomfortable with what you're doing. If you correct her for it, she will stop growling, yes, but then what other ways does she have of letting you know she doesn't like what you're doing? Biting?

Honestly, I think your pup was just very unsure of what was going on.
 

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Mine try and jump out the tub so I keep them on a lead but they don't ever growl at me. How is the water temp? Is the pup growling the whole time or just when you wash her/him in a certain place? Maybe you should try giving your dog a dry bath for awhile. Some dogs just don't like water or have to get used to it. If the dog is not trying to bite or nip at you I wouldn't worry about it. Just takes them some time to get adjusted to getting baths.

Give Your Dog a Dry Bath (Tips.Net)
 

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Work them Pet Bulls!
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Honestly, the growling kind of freaked me out. I was a little in shock that she was acting like that. She doesn't fight to get out of the tub and is pretty good for the first few minutes. Once I start rinsing her off and usuing a cup to do so is when she gets grouchy. I was thinking along the lines of the waterless shampoo's. I never used those before though and I am wondering if it creates build up on there coat or makes them itchy. As an ex-groomer I am used to a traditional soap and water bath.
 

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I understand but if the dog is not used to the water the pup is probably just scared. The worse thing you can do is feed off their fear that will only make it worse. You can always muzzle the pup in the tub if you fear the pup is going to bite you. I just think the pup is scared and doesn't like the water and needs to get used to it. You can give a dry bath using baking soda and a good brush to brush it all out. But you will still want to give the pup baths in between ... Like i said if your afraid the pup is going to bite you put a muzzle on the pup until the pup get's used to the water.

As always use praise and treats to make bath time rewarding for your pup when he/she is behaving.
 

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Is it just growling? Is she stiffening up or curling lips or anything like that to go along with it? If it's just growling I'd completely ignore it and carry on with what you're doing. Handle her gently but firmly, if you know what I mean.

I've never had growling during baths but my female growls when she runs to greet people. It sometimes puts people off but its an involuntary thing that she doesn't seem aware of and is just because she's excited.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
It is just growling with the occassional try to grab the big cup I use to rinse her off with. Her body isn't stiff, or no curling of the lips. Funny thing is, is that we were just at the vet yesterday and they stuck a thermometer up her butt and gave her a rabies and distemper shot and she didn't even flinch. She was very sweet with everyone there.......put her in water though and she turns into a gremlin!
 

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dont know how you've had the dog, but thats a young age; just be firm like you will accept no :poop: and tell her to hush, she's alright.. in also a somewhat ignoring fashion, Hell I washed growling dogs alot, yeah, they are uncomfortable but growling should be replaced with that at the door whinning type behavior, cur it quick,, lol I mean curve it quick..
 

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It is just growling with the occassional try to grab the big cup I use to rinse her off with. Her body isn't stiff, or no curling of the lips. Funny thing is, is that we were just at the vet yesterday and they stuck a thermometer up her butt and gave her a rabies and distemper shot and she didn't even flinch. She was very sweet with everyone there.......put her in water though and she turns into a gremlin!
You'll probably find that's because vets (generally) handle dogs confidently and that's transferred onto your dog. Firehazard is on the money.
 
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