You may have heard that washing your dog with cleaners like shampoos isn't good for them--and I couldn't agree more! You bathe your dog too much and you'll dry out their fur and mess up its natural balance and that's no good.
But what do you do if you come home after a hike like this one? Try one of these:
1. Let it Dry!
Let the mud dry. A lot of it falls off. What is left, brush out of their coats. When it's really bad, rinse them with clear water just to rinse the mud off, certainly no need to shampoo everytime.
2. Rinse Him Off!
If you hose him down with lukewarm water, it won't hurt him, so long as you make sure it dries soon. Don't use any shampoo - especially one with insecticide in it - or conditioner - just water. It's far worse to leave the dirt on your dog, as it contains bacteria, and the mud itself will dry and form a 'mudpack', which will dry out the tissue.
Or, have him sit on a mat or old towel and get a bucket of water. Is it just his belly fur that gets covered and his legs? Wet a rag and get as much mud and dirt off as possible, then dry him off with another old towel. He'll shake, so watch out!
3. Just Bath Him!
You can bath him with a mild oatmeal shampoo, or even dawn dish detergent when the silt starts to build up - but otherwise, your dog is already in contact with water in the mud. More clean water isn't going to hurt anything!