Remedies for Stinky Dogs

April 1, 2013

Dog laying on a couch.Every time I bring my long-haired female Dachshund in from her potty, I use baby wipes for sensitive skin (fragrance and alcohol free) on her bottom and the bottoms of her feet. If she smells a little "doggy", I will wipe her down with one. I rarely bathe my dog, as it dries out their skin, but regularly brush her. She has no odor.

By Luann D.

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October 16, 2009

I wrote asking for tips and have now cured the 'smelly' dog. I got a second vet's opinion regarding the awful smell my chocolate brown Lab had. The vet diagnosed a yeast infection and prescribed an anti fungal and anti bacterial shampoo.


July 23, 2005

For Labrador Retrievers, mix one part Listerine with one part water and spray on after bathing to cut down on the Lab smell.


February 20, 2019

I have had two dogs now that start to smell, if not hours after a bath, the next day. I have tried the vinegar w/mother treatment, coal tar soap, weekly baths and many other home remedies - nothing worked. I went through the medicine cabinet looking for something else to try and ran across a small bottle labeled Tineacide Antifungal Cream. It is used for athlete's foot and such.

A large fluffy dog holding a toy in his mouth.


Here are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community.

March 16, 2013

I have two dogs that have been outside dogs for a year. Next week we are moving to our new home and they will be inside dogs once again : ) My two dogs stink, oh so bad! I need help, please!

By Tina A.


March 16, 20133 found this helpful

We always wash our 2 outside dogs in Dawn liquid dishwashing soap! It's safe & effective & they smell great afterwards... at least until they find a mud pile! My bestfriend washes her 5 dogs in Dawn as well & they are all inside dogs! It also helps kill fleas & anything else that your dogs may "pick up" outside!


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March 17, 20134 found this helpful

If this is the stink that comes back day after bath? The kind your hand smells putrid by a few pats of their had and back? Very specific instructions and cannot use on any collie type or sheepdog let me know and I will send you my phone or you can send me yours. A cure is possible. I did my own under supervision from my old fashioned vet.

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January 9, 2017

I have a 7 year old Pit Bull. He has a terrible odor coming from his skin. We bathe him often and have tried so many different soaps. He confines himself in small areas and cries all day.

He constantly is itching and biting until he bleeds. Do you recommend a special soap we could try or do you think this could possibly be allergies? Help please!

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February 16, 2016

My Lab rolls in rotting animals that he finds, while exploring the area. My sense of smell is killing me. How to rid him of this disgusting odor?


February 17, 20161 found this helpful
Best Answer

Well, it's not so much the smell I would be worried about, but rather the possible vermin, disease, or chemical (if the animal was poisoned) your dog could pick up on its fur and possibly later lick off. Unfortunately unless you are going to figure out a way to keep your pup away from things like that, I'm thinking a bath each time may be the safest bet. Also, call the vet to see if there is something they can recommend to stop the pup from doing it.

May 13, 20164 found this helpful
Best Answer

Give your dog a bath by wetting the hair lather with lots of Dawn dish washing liquid. Then use baking soda to coat the hair completely. Next pour vinegar all over the hair. This neutralizes odors. Let sit for 5 min while massaging it in, and rinse. Follow with shampoo. This also works great on skunk spray! Your dog will b odor free!!

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February 21, 2012

I have tried several products and none of them do the job. I want sound advice as I have spent enough money and none of the products work. I only get temporary results.

By GD from Lynn, MA


February 21, 20120 found this helpful

What kind of dog do you have? Is it indoor or outdoor? And what products have you been using?

February 22, 20120 found this helpful

Diet & infection.

Dogs tend to smell more or less depending on what they eat. Raw fed dogs tend to smell less most often as they are eating their proper diet and thus aren't having body chemistry balance issues.

Infection can be bacterial or yeast/fungal. Diet can exacerbate it, but can also be because of breed, environment or simply just exposure that took root. Check for rash, hives, pimples or sores on the dog's skin. That would be everywhere, underside, ears, back etc.

February 22, 20120 found this helpful

Dogs have a natural odor. When you bath them, it's back in a day or two. They are not going to smell "fresh" very long. If you are expecting it /them to smell like a person who is clean, it won't happen. Actually people have a natural odor themselves after a day or two of not bathing, and I am referring to an oil smell and not B.O. I don't know how bad this odor is, but if it is bad, then maybe something is wrong with the dog (internally) or the dog is getting into something or sitting or sleeping on something smelly which is causing the odor.

February 22, 20120 found this helpful

After washing your dog, rinse with a 3:1 solution of water [3] and vinegar[1]. The vinegar smell will only be temporary [depending on the size of your dog] but it's coat will be beautifully soft and squeaky clean. Vinegar is antiseptic and antibiotic, your dog's skin will benefit as well. Zinc is also a remedy for doggie's bad breath.

February 23, 20120 found this helpful

Maybe the anal glands need to be emptied. It is common for them to still smell after a bath when this is needed. If you don't know how, you can look it up on the computer or have a dog groomer or the vet do it.


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February 25, 20120 found this helpful

Either you're overly sensitive about odors or you need to take your dog to a vet for evaluation. Dogs like humans have their own smell but if your animal is healthy and you clean the house every week it shouldn't be a problem. Does your dog have any sores on it's body, bad teeth & gums, etc.? Take it up with your vet.

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June 27, 2013

I have a 12 week old Husky that wets herself while laying, sleeping, and playing. Her coat is drenched with urine and smells bad. I took her to the vet, but they said it's normal. I've never seen a dog wet itself like that. What can I do to clean her coat, because I don't want to wash her everyday. Please help.

By Natasha W.


June 29, 20130 found this helpful

Change your veterinarian effectively immediately.
Good luck.


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June 30, 20130 found this helpful

That is not normal! Go to a different vet!

July 8, 20130 found this helpful

This is definitely not normal, please go to a different vet. Also ask the new vet for a sanitary cut. They will shave the area around the animal's privates, this will help with some of the issue, but not the root cause. There is something seriously wrong please see a different vet

July 28, 20130 found this helpful

This is not normal. She probably has a bladder infection. Make sure she see's a new vet and gets on some antibiotics. I have raised huskies for years and never had this problem. The urine can even burn her skin if it goes on. U can wash her with Dawn dish soap which is great for stinky odors.

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October 16, 2019

Where can I find a cure for my smelly male Bichon Frise?

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September 17, 2013

I have an 80 lb Bouv. He doesn't smell, but has rolled in something and I can not get the smell out. I have given him 2 baths, used baby powder, bake soda, lemon, some herbs, and we are working on the 5th day. I can not stand him under my nose. Any suggestions?

By Wendie

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May 4, 2013

I have just gotten a long rough haired Collie who has been outside and I need to have him in the house. I have bathed him in medicated dog shampoo, but he still smells! His white fur has turned a bit, let's say, not white. Can anyone help?

By Julie R


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May 6, 20130 found this helpful

A vinegar rinse will deodorise and remove the discolouration from white fur. You can apply it full strength, or mixed half-half with water. No matter what strength you chose to apply, don't rinse, just pat him dry after you've got all his fur sopping wet-the strong vinegar odor will fade to nothing quickly taking the yellow and the other odor with it.

Stand the dog in the bathtub to contain him, and use a separate bowl for the vinegar or vinegar and water. Before applying (with a drenched sponge) be sure the dog has no patches of broken skin or you will have an extremely unhappy dog.

Works a treat, I've used it to remove skunk and other really awful 'fragrances' dogs seem to make a beeline for.

May 6, 20130 found this helpful

You could always take him to a groomer just this one time to get him professionally cleaned, then bathe him at home after that. Don't be afraid to ask for tips to keep him smelling fresh and keep his fur pretty.

May 8, 20130 found this helpful

Our lab got skunked and we tried every old trick in the book. Out of desperation, I finally told my husband I wanted to try our tea tree shampoo. IT WORKED! I bought ours from Cost Cutters (Walmart) but there are tons of brands. I think they may be one of the cheaper ones though. After one wash with the tea tree shampoo, the smell was gone completely!

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February 14, 2017

I have an 8 year old Westie. Not long ago he started having an odor 5 minutes after a bath and now his skin has black areas on it. I was told by my vet to give him fish oil 3 months ago and it would clear up.

Both have gotten worse and all he does is chew and now he has bald spots on his legs. I'm worried.

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September 16, 2012

My dog looks more like a Husky, but may be a Shepherd/Husky mix, with party blue eyes. Yet she has ears like a gremlin, way too big for her head. Cute when they were floppy, now she looks like she will fly away. When alert they stand straight up. Anyway, she sheds 24/7. It looks like I'm cutting her hair, the way it comes out. She stinks even after a bath. What can I do for her? The smell is what I'm asking about. The rest is just for info, if needed. Thank you.

By Kimi T. from Verilion, Oh


September 17, 20120 found this helpful

Well, I have a Skye Terrier (2, mother and daughter). 'Mother' smelled bad the other day even after a bath, so I sprayed her with vinegar (I use vinegar in a spray bottle for cleaning and other things). She smelled a bit like vinegar, but I'd rather smell that than the stinky greasy dog smell. You may not want to try it, but actually, I think the vinegar smell pretty much goes away, as I also use it as a rinse on my hair and no one has ever said anything about the way my hair smells.

September 18, 20120 found this helpful

When my dogs start doing this, it usually means they need to have their anal glands drained. You can get this done either at the Vet's or from a dog groomer. You can also have them show you how and you can do it yourself.

July 10, 20130 found this helpful

I have a husky, when you give them a bath you have to get down to the skin when washing a little viniger is good for there skin and fur bursh before and after bath dry good.

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April 20, 2016

Help, I need ideas. I have 2 German Shepherds, and my male German reeks! They get baths every few weeks, brushed every few days, and eat a grain-free high protein food. He's not constantly scratching, and doesn't have an oily coat or skin. The vet said he was healthy on his last visit so I'm lost on why he's so stinky.German Shepherd in the snow


The only difference between him and my female is she's 3 and traditional color, he's 7 months and sable, and obviously gender.

Any ideas for keeping him smelling somewhat fresh would be highly appreciated!

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October 4, 2014

My dog has been in the dog pound for 2 months and has come back stinking of urine and is very thin. How can I get rid of the smell?

By Elaine

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September 30, 2014

My girl is almost 16 and she "leaks" urine on herself. I cannot bathe her several times a week, and was hoping there is a natural mix of something that I can spray on her backside to neutralize her odor. She is on Proin to help strengthen her bladder sphincter, but she leaks a bit while sleeping. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

By Beth

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August 13, 2013

My mom has an older Bichon Frise. She has her groomed/shampooed every two months, if not more. The dog just cannot seem not to smell after a few days. Is it old age or yeast? Can anyone help?


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June 25, 2015

I have a Pit Bull and he is not potty trained. His paws are really stinky because he steps on the urine after he pees. I really hate the smell of it since he lays with me and my sheets smell like stinky dog.

When I shower him the urine won't come off his paws. How can I clean his paws, or what should I buy so I can take the smell and the urine off his paws?

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April 5, 2013

Recently we were at the lake walking around and running my lab dog. A cow pasture was near and he found some cow poop and rolled in it (very fresh) really good. I got home and gave him a good bath outside. Four days later he still smells.

What can I do about it? He's mostly an inside dog. Please help me.

By Dee


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April 7, 20130 found this helpful

The old wives tale of a tomato juice rinse is a true one-get the cheapest you can because you're going to need a lot of it. The juice may also stain the dog's coat for a while. Follow this link for more info:

Another odor neutraliser is baking soda heavily dusted into the dog's coat-be advised this treatment will need to be repeated and the dog will leave puffs of the baking soda behind.

You can also try a vinegar rinse:

Good luck! I once had a dog who rolled in a heap of rotted fish, P-EEW for several days! It was awful and I ended up using all three of the above deodorisers to get the stench out, lol!

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July 10, 2014

Border Collie mixI adopted a Border Collie mix a couple weeks ago, and this morning she got out of our yard and came back from the woods smelling like a dead fish. I tried washing her with regular dog shampoo from the pet store, but she still smells just as bad. Anyone have a solution?

She has long, somewhat kinky hair. Also anyone have tips for a dog who hates baths?

By C R

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March 30, 2014

She smells a day or two after we bath her.

By Tau

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September 29, 2014

This is a page about remedy for smelly dog feet. Although your dog may be well, it can have stinky feet for no apparent reason. It can be bothersome.

Smelly Dog Paw


ThriftyFun is one of the longest running frugal living communities on the Internet. These are archives of older discussions.

September 15, 2006

Does anyone know some kind of home remedy for a "smelly" dog! I have a Llaso who smells like a gym locker!


October 15, 2009

Lotty is a 9 year old yellow lab. The smell is very sweet and cheesy. At first we thought it was coming from her ears. She does not have ear mites and her ears are very clean.


October 8, 2009

Does anyone know some kind of home remedy for a "smelly" dog. What can I do about a stinky dog?

Pets Dogs GroomingMarch 29, 2012
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