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What’s the best way to clean a dog when you aren’t able to give it a bath? I just picked up a foster pup from the shelter and she is VERY scared of everything. She cowers in the corner shaking and won’t move. She is quite dirty and smelly but I don’t want to traumatize her by trying to give a bath right away. Is there a way I can clean her until she gets more comfortable in my home?
 

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A damp washcloth would help if she's got short hair. If she's got longer hair, it's less effective.
 

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Begin with brushing and combing. This will help to remove dirt and debris. It will also teach the dog about being handled.

Don't bathe a dog with mats. If you do, the mats will become impossible to remove without scissoring.

Then begin training about the bath. Step by step.
place the dog in a dry tub with an anti-slip mat. Let the dog sniff around. Praise and many treats.
Keep at this step until the dog is comfortable. No sessions longer than 5-10 minutes.

next turn on the water......same process....sniff, treats, repeat,
get the paws wet.....same process

Gradually, the dog will become comfortable and you can accelerate the process.
 

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Wet wipes for dogs or waterless shampoo could be an option.
When applying these, it's more like petting/massaging her so perhaps she'll like it and it will help her get used to your touch.
 
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