Grooming: How to wash a goldendoodle and the products that have endured the test of bloo
How I manage my high-maintenance dog. With links to every product I use, because I’ve gone through so many, and these are the ones that have stuck.
The first thing that people say when they pet bloo for the first time is, “she’s so soft!” And truly, she is. I don’t think I’ve ever touched a creature with more silky soft hair. (Not fur). Her hair is as fine as it gets. It also traps and locks dust better than a swiffer. It is very high maintenance. I bathe her about once a week out of necessity. (She loves walking/wading through mud puddles, always walks through that pile of dead, rotting leaves the neighbours put out too late so they never got picked up, and rolling in skunk poo. Also I’m quite allergic to dust.) Dog hair still ends up all over the house because, even though bloo is nonshedding, I am constantly snipping mats out of her. Constantly. (Brushing or combing causes her too much discomfort anywhere that’s not the head or scruff).
I have gone through every kind of hair brush, short of a Mason Pearson, to find one that won’t damage her hair and cause mats. Once one forms, she’ll lick it and it’s just a downward spiral from there. A couple times a year we used to have to snip all her tail fluff off because it’s become one long piece of felt. It took me 4 years to figure out how to maintain her tail plumage.
Okay, so once upon a time I bought an expensive hair conditioner from Sephora from a brand called Playa because I am a professional product junkie with a problem. Anyways, this conditioner, I swear, is the best conditioner out there. I feel like I’ve been scammed my whole life buying mediocre knockoff “condishuner” because I have seen the light and if I could I would use it daily, but alas, it’s a once a week treat. The shit is as thick as mayonnaise, and somehow it leaves my hair a little more like bloo’s.
So anyways, it wasn’t until discovering the power of this conditioner that a lightbulb went off and I was like…wait. I should condition bloo’s hair… DUH KAREN.
So I did and this potion works miracles y’all and me and my dogs life has been changed forever. Bloo was as soft as an angel’s butt. And it prevented a lot of knots from forming.
I have tried products from grooming brands geared to show dogs in different formulations but the ingredients and performance were lackluster. I never finished the bottles. I didn’t like how much product I needed to get the results I wanted and didn’t like the smell or ingredient list.
Three years on from the original publication of this post (it’s now 2023), we are still loyal to Buddy Wash 2-in-1, but have added in the Buddy Wash Conditioner because the shampoo on its own, isn’t conditioning enough.
Because I budgets don’t exist when it comes to my dog, all those “designer” doggy shampoos like teh ones from Aesop are very alluring to me. But the ingredients are usually not good. Sulfates? No, thanks. Also, sulfated surfactants (SLS, SLES) cause eczema flare-ups for me, so I avoid touching them whenever possible.
The only exception is Ouai. I have found that Ouai’s dog shampoo is a one-step wonder. Yes, it’s expensive, but it cuts our time in the shower down to under 10 minutes because we don’t need the extra conditioner step.
Unfortunately, the Playa Conditioner has been discontinued, but the founder’s new brand California Naturals has brought the luxe formulations to $10!! I use the hair mask on her tail and leave it on while I shampoo her head, so it gets an extra minute to sink in. After about 30 minutes of air drying, I put a dollop of Cowboy Magic into her tail and really work it in. This stuff has been a game changer in terms of being able to keep a long fluffy tail. I used to have to cut all the tail fluff off every 4 months because it would be so matted.
When she’s fully dry, I do a full brush with my favourite product True Blue’s detangling spray. It’s a great conditioner and doesn’t weigh down bloo’s hair whatsoever. I go through her head with this comb, which I’ve had since she was a puppy. I really do comb my dog with a fine tooth comb to get all the mats out/prevent mats from happening. I like that there’s an even finer tooth on one side, which is great for the ears and snoot. On her bum, tail, and legs I use this dematting comb instead – it doesn’t pull as much and breaks through any knots. I wouldn’t recommend using it to actually demat the dog, I would still rather cut out large mats, but it’s a great tool to break up knots before they get bigger.
Oh the life of a bloob.