About Me:

I am a professional Pet Groomer. I have been grooming for 28 years. This Blog is a kind of diary of my work. I wish I had started years ago, writing some of the experiences I have had while grooming. Most days are fun, some can be sad, some can be just down right crazy. If you are a pet owner and come across this blog, I hope it helps you understand how your pet is groomed. If you are a Pet Groomer, I hope you can relate to some of the stories. Maybe even learn a grooming tip or can leave a friendly grooming tip for me. There is always something to learn, no matter how long you have been grooming.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Tuesdays Tip #5

I had a client about 7 years ago start bringing in a little sandwich bag of Baking Soda for each groom.
This owner is very allergic to a lot of things, so her dog only gets a Hypo Allergenic Shampoo and no cologne.
The owners Holistic Vet told the owner to bring us Baking Soda to use on her dog.

I have to say, the first time I used the Baking Soda I was amazed at how soft it left the dog.
I now use Baking Soda on almost every dog I bathe.

 Baking Soda can be used a few different ways.

How to mix it:
 I use a cleaned out shampoo gallon jug to make up the Baking Soda Mix.

I fill the gallon jug up with warm water.

I put two tablespoons of Baking Soda in to the bottle of warm water.

 It does not have to be an exact measurement.

Turn the bottle upside down and shake to mix.

I used a drill bit to drill 5 to 7 holes in the lid of the shampoo bottle.
The number of holes depends on the size of the holes you make.

First Tip:

Baking Soda is great to use on large hairy dogs that take a long time to rinse.

After you finish shampooing and before you start rinsing, mix up a fresh batch of Baking Soda.
Pour the Baking Soda, generously, all over the dog, on top of the shampoo.
The Baking Soda helps break down the shampoo and it rinses out much faster.

 Second Tip:

After you have used creme rinse on the dog, pour Baking Soda all over the dog and do another quick rinse.
I have found that the Baking Soda keeps a creme rinsed from taking forever to dry.

Third Tip:

If you have a dog that you do not like to creme rinse because they always seem to come out greasy, mix up the Baking Soda and pour generously all over the dog after all of the shampoo has been rinsed.


Towel dry as usual.
I think you will be amazed at how fluffy and soft the dog is.

I like using Baking Soda on Poodles that have a very thick curly coat.

It helps with drying time and helps straighten the curl for scissoring.

Do Not get the Baking Soda Mix in the eyes.

I do not use the Backing Soda on any heads.
I don't want to take a chance that they will turn their head at the wrong moment.

This is 'Ashley' after her blow dry.
She has a very thick curly coat.
I creme rinsed her and then soaked her with the Baking Soda Mix.
I rinsed the Baking Soda off.

It took me 30 minutes to completely HV dry her from the tub.

I hope that this Tip helps make some of your grooming easier.

Happy Grooming, MFF



  1. Have you ever tried this on Doodle coats? We have some doodles that make me want to rip my own hair out because they take so long to dry after the cream rinse, but you have to cream rinse or else the brush won't go through so then the snap-on won't go through but it's all a moot point since they never dry anyways!!

    Or Newfies, such as my gargantuan boy today. Hours of drying with the hv then with regular fans and I was still finding wet pockets. :(

  2. Yes, I use baking soda on 90% of the dogs I bathe.
    After you rinse the creme rinse off, try pouring the baking soda over the coat and do not rinse. The baking soda helps the coat dry faster while leaving the coat very soft.
    Another quick tip, while drying, rub the area you are trying to dry with a towel at the same time you are HVing. The towel will catch the spray of water coming off the coat, and help the dog dry more quickly.
    Thanks for reading my blog.
    Lisa, MFF

  3. I didnt understand do you rinse the baking soda??? Some places you put yes others no or does it depend on the dog??? Im confused!!! :/

  4. Hi Anonymous,
    Yes and no. It depends on the coat and how I want the coat to feel. If you would like to leave the coat very soft, leave the baking soda on. If you are using the baking soda mainly to make sure all of the shampoo is rinsed off, or to help dry the coat, rinse the coat after you use the baking soda.
    I hope that helps. :)
    Lisa, MFF

  5. Hi...if i have a very sensitive skin dog i could use the baking soda rinse??? Do i rinse or not??

  6. Hi Jessica,
    It really depends on how sensitive the skin is. If you are using a prescription shampoo from the Vet, I would not use anything else.
    If you are using your own medicated shampoo, it would sill depend on the dog. If I did decide to use the 'Baking Soda Rinse' I would rinse it off.
    Lisa, MFF

  7. Hello, Lisa! Do you think using Baking soda rinse would help to blow away mats from the skin further when drying a very matted dog? Today i had a poor maltese that comes in once a year. I washed him before clipping but i couldnt dry the legs completely. Mats, old dry mud and poop just stuck to his legs (though i tried to wash it out, it still was inside), so i had to go there with #15 blade :(
    What would you do in this case?

  8. Hi Insomnia,
    Maltese hair is the worst when it is matted. The mats rarely loosen up no matter what you do or use.
    When i am bathing a really dirty, matted dog, I like to use either Best Shot shampoo, or a mixture that I mix up with 'The Stuff' added. I scrub the mats with my fingers and try to gently pull them apart a little while I am working the shampoo into the mats. I will also squirt fully concentrated creme rinse on the mats and work it in with my fingers to see if I can work the mats loose.
    After I feel like I have worked the shampoo and creme rinse all of the way through the mat, down to the skin, I will rinse the dog by putting the sprayer right up against the mats and work the sprayer under the mat, and back and forth until I am sure that I have all of the dirt and shampoo out.
    Most importantly, I depend on my HV dryer to move that mat away from the skin...at least a little bit.
    I also don't worry about getting the mat itself completely dry. My goal is to get the hair between the mat and the leg dry. That is where I will be clipping. It does not matter if the mats are still a little damp. You will be cutting them off.
    I hope that this helps.
    Lisa, MFF

  9. Now i have to search on the Internet what is The stuff :)
    I did the same like you would do. Shampoo twice, concentrated conditioner. The problem was that there were no space in between skin and mats :( they were like glued together! Washing and hv drying helped on the back, but not on the legs, it was too tight. There is probably no solution in loosening mats on a dog that is groomed once a year...
    Have you used Matt-out or Fluff-out from Davis? Im tempted to try it, because i groom a lot of matted dogs. But my boss wouldnt invest in something that is not a nessesity :( its not an ad!

    1. Hi Insomnia,
      As I said before, Maltese hair is the worst when it mats.

      Here is a link to 'The Stuff':


      I have not tried the 'matt-out' but I have tried the 'Fluff-out', it was okay, but I did not order anymore.
      The concentrate of 'The Stuff' lasts a long time. You only need a capful to a gallon of diluted shampoo.
      You can also order it 'ready to use' (already diluted).
      You are right...a once a year Maltese...nothing will move those mats. :(
      Lisa, MFF

  10. Hi..
    I have a 14 months old Dalmatian. His coat starts to smell after 2 or 3 days from a bath. So I can't help but give him a bath once a week. Would this baking soda mix help to improve his skin condition?
    Thank you. Regards

  11. Hi,
    Talk to your Vet about the food that you fed your dog. The food could be causing skin issues.

    Make sure that you are using a Medicated shampoo, Oatmeal shampoo, or Hypoallergenic shampoo. Any one of these shampoos can help the skin and coat.

    The baking soda is a good idea and can help with odors.

    I would defiantly talk to your Vet about the food, or research dog foods on the internet to find a good food for your dog.

    Lisa, MFF

    1. Thank you Lisa. Really appreciate your reply.

  12. Thank you for this wonderful tip, can't wait to try it on my Chow/Shepherd, she's the first dog I've had w/skin allergies. She doesn't like the air quality in FL, when I open the door for her to go out, she smells and doesn't even want to go out...I think it must be the mold in the air. It's hard to even take her for a walk as she'll have flare ups. Feeding her more meat is helping and I've tried apple cider vinegar rinses, those sting the hot spots but do help. Her coat is better but looking forward to a manageable routine for her.

    1. Hi Julie,
      I hope the Baking Sode rinse helps. As for the Hot Spots, another groomer told me about using 'Witch Hazel' on them. I tried it on my cat and it worked great.
      Lisa, MFF

  13. Hello! I was wondering if its OK to use dry baking soda method on a rough collie since my dog has such thick coat it takes a lot of time to thoroughly bath her fur out. Thank you!

    1. Hi M,
      Sprinkling dry baking soda over mats can help if you are trying to brush the mats out.
      If you are not a groomer, I recommend that you brush all of the dead undercoat out of your dog before you put her in the tub. Once all of the undercoat is out, and her coat has naturally been thinned out, it will be much easier to get the shampoo through her coat.
      When I was in High School I had my first Collie. I would let him lay on the floor and brush out one side, then turn him over and brush the other side. Thankfully he was very good about brushing. :)
      Lisa, MFF

  14. Thanks for sharing :) Some great information in there I will definitely need to pass on.

  15. Thanks for all of your blogs. I love them. They remind me of old tricks and give me new ideas. Keep them coming.

  16. Thanks for your info and sharing, it's great you do heaps of diff dog. I don't use shampoo just the bicarb to wash with and I'm still trying to decide to rinse or to not rinse. I wash my little kind coat chi weekly because he needs that kind of care because of health probs. And iv been looking for other that yours bicarb too, and how. Thanks for the ideas