Why Dogs Sometimes Smell Bad

Why Dogs Sometimes Smell Bad

Last update: 29 December, 2018

When you adopt a pet, you’re told you should only wash them once a month. Or to bathe them two times at most. However, your dog always ends up smelling bad a week after getting a bath. This happens even if you follow the instructions to the letter. Why does this happen? In this article, we want to answer this and other questions about why your dog doesn’t smell good.

Your dog has many odors that are foul: their breath, body odor, or even smelling bad or wet, even if they aren’t. Here, we’ll show you what’s happening to your pet and what you can do to minimize the bad smell.

What do dogs smell like?

Stinky little puppy

It’s easy to answer this question: dogs smell like dogs. Even if their odor is different than ours, this doesn’t mean it smells bad. It might smell bad to us. But they don’t see it that way.

In fact, dogs have a special odor that helps them identify themselves as individuals. These odors also enable them to communicate with other animals. This is important to keep in mind before thinking that your dog doesn’t smell good.

A dog’s nose is a thousand times more powerful than a human’s. So, this strange smell lets other dogs identify them as an individual and it’s much more developed in their rear-end. This is where they give off the largest amount of scent hormones.

However, even though some of the smells your dog gives off are normal, there are some that go beyond that. Sometimes, the smell can be symptomatic of a skin, mouth, or digestive disease. So, if you think that the smell is too strong, here are some recommendations that can help prevent this problem.

My dog doesn’t smell good, how can I keep this from happening?

Bathe and brush them

As mentioned at the beginning of this article, dogs need to be bathed at least once a month. This keeps them from having stronger smells than usual. That being said, something that a lot of people don’t know is how important brushing is for their hygiene.

Brushing your dog’s coat on a daily basis will help to remove substances and bacteria. These are things that can stick to them when they’re outside. Getting rid of them keeps them your dog’s skin from smelling bad.

What if their breath smells bad?

Oral hygiene is also something that people overlook and it’s important for you to keep your dog’s breath and teeth in great shape.

Your vet will tell you what kind of toothpaste and brush you need use. You can take care of your pet’s oral hygiene yourself. Even still, a vet visit every six months is important. This lets the vet remove any plaque and take care of other oral problems your dog may have.

Their skin

Your dog’s skin has its own particular smell. But sometimes, it can be too strong. This can be a sign of disease that’s caused by mold or bacteria. They might start causing an imbalance in the pH level of your pet’s skin. As a result, worse things can start to happen. If you notice a foul smell, the best thing for you to do is to take your pet to the vet.


As a general rule, a dog’s ears give off a slightly stronger odor, which is similar to what ours do. However, it’s possible for your dog to get an infection like otitis. If this happens, you might be able to smell something without getting close to your dog’s head.

This is very painful for your dog. It can even cause other unpleasant consequences. Don’t medicate your pet or take advice from other pet owners. They might try to tell you what worked for them. But each dog is different. Therefore, diagnosis and treatment should only be done by your pet’s vet.


It's normal for old dogs to smell bad, no matter what, you should continue loving them

If their gas smells worse than normal, it’s likely that your dog has a stomach or digestive problem. Get them checked out if you have any doubts. By doing so, you will also help you maintain your pet’s good health.

As you can see, it’s important to pay attention to how your pet smells. You should learn to distinguish if the smell is normal or stronger than what it should be. After all, this is normally caused by a health problem that needs to be treated.