Would your dog benefit if you conditioned her coat? Answer these 6 questions to find out



Most people dislike bathing their dog because, let’s admit it, it’s a pain in the rear end.  Taking extra time to condition their dog would be a real luxury. However, conditioning can really improve the state of their coat.

The case for conditioners – As we all know, shampoos by design are used for removing unwanted grime from the skin and coat. But shampooing, without sealing the coat afterwards, leaves the hair shaft open where residue can enter and oils and hydration escape. But conditioning after shampooing will close the hair cuticle and restore hydration, moisture and elasticity.

To determine if your dog is a good candidate for conditioner answer the following questions:

1. How long is your dog’s coat?

2. Does he/she have an under coat?

3. How often do you wash your dog?

4. Does your dog have itchy skin?

5. The cuddle factor (CF) you would like to achieve.

6. How adverse is your dog to bath time?

Long Coats

If your dog has a long coat,  then it may be prone to mats and tangles (think Maltese, Yorkies, Afgans). Using a conditioner will not only make your dog’s coat healthier it will make your job a lot easier by helping to remove mats and tangles and the after bath brush out will be a breeze.


Dog’s without undercoats will probably receive the most benefit from a conditioner. Because their hair most resembles human hair, it’s thin, easily tangles and gets dirty quickly. Dogs with undercoats usually have thicker coarser hair (like a lab) and therefore do not matte and the coat tends to repel dirt.

Wash Frequency

If you wash your dog often (more than 1x per month) you should definitely condition your dog to close that hair shaft so the coat retains moisture.

Itchy Skin

If your dog has itchy skin , you may want to bathe your dog more often to get rid of allergens. And if you’re washing your dog frequently, conditioner is a good idea. Be sure to use one that has oatmeal which works wonders for itchy skin and other botanicals to help combat itchy skin. Look for herbs like aloe, burdock, comfrey and boswellia to help with inflammation.

The Cuddle Factor (CF)

Of course this is the most important thing to consider!  I have a maltese and nothing is better than slathering her with Fur Butter (or Fur Worse) Deep Conditioner. Her coat is left so amazingly soft. It immediately makes the CF go from 10 to 1,000,000.

Bath Time adversity

If your dog really really hates the water and can’t hang around in the tub for one minute longer, there are still things you can do to condition your dog. For example, there are some great 2-in-1 Shampoos and Conditioners you can check out like Bubbles ‘n Beads. Not only does it smell amazing but it gets the job done fast.  Or, get a leave-in conditioner that you simply spray into the dog’s coat after a bath. This aids with the brush out process and adds moisture into the coat. Most of these can be used on a wet or dry coat.

So there is some science to this after all, it’s not all just fluff (not pun intended) Although for most of us it will come down to unquantifiable things like the all important Fluff Factor and of course the aforementioned Cuddle Factor (CF).


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  1. I condition my long hair Chihuahua because i feel that i condition my own hair after washing so my doggie deserves the same great loving..i would love to try your fur butter on him.thank you very much. Theresa

  2. I have one dog small but mighty, who’s hair grows thick and long. She’s non shedding, but if not brushed/combed out twice a week, is prone to matting. I’ve had her for 6 years and she occasionally gets a hair cut at the groomer in summertime. Picture is of her when her hair is about 3 inches long, it gets much longer.

  3. would it be beneficial for my Pomeranian, her fur is coarse, & bloomers get very thick & tangled, groomer expressed that her skin txture & fur is diff than most! please let me know!

  4. Our Gwen, a Lhasa, has skin issues. Doc had us change diet. No change. Had her on steroids. Stopped because we didnt want her on them for to long. She coat is thin and she has been known to scratch bare spots. We believe she is enviromental allergies due to she was a puppymill dog and raised in a cage. She scratches year round except when we have a deep freeze. I do condition her fur when i bathe her. Any suggestions would be great. I read that if you use a mild shampoo you can bathe dogs more than once a month. Thoughts?
    Thank you
    Denise M

  5. I don’t condition my dog Zeus. he is a long hair chi. I love him to bits but truly just never thought about conditioning him. hmmmm….. maybe I should start. thanks!

  6. i have a 4 year old lab newly diagnosed with allergies. She has to be on injections the rest of her life and it will take a year to see some improvement. She however is still scratching and has so much dry skin.

  7. I have 2 Goldie’s one we rescued 4 weeks ago with a matted shaggy thin and broken coat I was forced to shave the worse places and been adding fish oil caps to her meals to help with her dry skin but she needs a lot of work to get back into condition and the other is a therapy dog who must be washed and soft before every visit out so her skin occasionally get dry and itchy

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