Bichon Frise's often experience extreme periods of scratching that have nothing to do with fleas. This breed is prone to skin allergies and other conditions that cause them to scratch themselves

Bichons Have Skin Allergies

furiously, often to the point of bleeding. There are however some steps to take that can alleviate the itching and mak

e a happier, healthier, dog and owner.

Things You Will Need

Oatmeal Shampoo - Can be purchased at pet stores or veterinarian's office
Leave-In Skin Conditioner for Dogs -Also available at pet store or veterinarian's office
Apple Cider Vinegar
Dog bath tub, sink or other area to bath the dog in

Step 1

Before bathing the Bichon, brush thoroughly to remove any knots from the hair.
Assemble all materials near the bathing area and within reach.
Pre-heat the water to prevent from giving the dog a chill or scalding him. Make sure it is warm to the touch, but not too hot.
Remove collar if necessary.

Step 2

Take the Bichon to the bath area. Stand him up in the tub, talking to him in a soft tone to help him relax. If the bath area has a sprayer, have this ready, if not, a plastic tumbler will help to get him wet.
Thoroughly wet the dog's hair in preparation for the shampoo. Be careful not to get water in his eyes and avoid getting it in the ear canal. Turn the water off and move to the shampooing step.

Step 3

Starting with the top of the head, apply a small amount of the oatmeal shampoo. Work into a lather and continue to work down the back, adding more shampoo as necessary. Use a massaging motion to get the oatmeal shampoo down to the skin underneath the hair.
Make sure to shampoo the underbelly as the oatmeal will help with itching and the underbelly is an exposed area that often itches. The last area to be shampooed should be the face, carefully avoiding the eye area. Talk to the dog to occupy him so that the shampoo can remain on his body for a few minutes. Oatmeal shampoo has anti-itch properties that will help immensely.

Step 4

After the shampoo has had time to soak in, turn the water back on and rinse the dog. Start at the top of the head and using the sprayer rinse going down the back. Continue to rinse until the water runs clear, remembering the underbelly and face area. If shampoo is allowed to dry into the skin it will cause extra itching.
After the rinse, apply a small amount of leave in conditioner to the dogs hair. An easy way to apply enough but not too much is to rub it between the palms and then run the palms through the dogs hair.

Step 5

Finally, it is time for the magic touch that will help with the itching more than any commercially advertised product. Using a plastic tumbler, make a mixture of warm water and apple cider vinegar. Pour this mixture down the dog's back , starting at the head. Repeat the mixture process and pour it on the underbelly area. This is a little tricky. Using the filled tumbler and cupping the palms, splash the mixture from underneath up onto the belly. Make sure the entire body gets the magic rinse.

Step 6

Remove excess water from the dog's skin while still in the bath area. This is easily achieved by gently squeezing the dog and pushing the water off.
Remove him from the bath area, wrap him in a towel and fluff him dry. Once he is dry, put his collar back on. The Bichon will thank you and his skin will be less itchy.

Step 7

Between bath times if the Bichon starts scratching and itching again, use a spray bottle with a mixture of apple cider vinegar and water to help ease the itch. Spray the dog and rub in gently.
Vinegar is an all natural solution that has been used for centuries in traditional medicine. It is also beneficial in dogs with skin issues. Following this routine during bath time and using a vinegar and water spray between baths should help keep the Bichon from scratching .

Tips & Warnings

If the Bichon has open cuts or scratches, vinegar should be diluted 3 parts water to 1 part vinegar to ease the sting. If the cuts or scratches are open an antibiotic creme can be used to prevent infection. For severe cuts, the veterinarian may need to be contacted for an oral antibiotic.