Cavapoos can have a smelly odor that can be caused by a number of different factors.
It could just be the ‘wet dog’ smell if your dog has just had a bath, swim or romp in the rain and if this is the case then the smell should go away as soon as your dog is dry.
More persistent smells can be as simple as your dog not being bathed enough, or they could be the cause of more serious issues such as parasites that are found on the skin.
9 Reasons Why Your Dog Might be Smelling Bad
I have listed 9 potential reasons below why your Cavapoo might not be smelling as nice as what you would like them to.
1. Lack of grooming or bathing
Grooming is more than just making your Cavapoo look good.
Grooming also helps to keep the dog's skin and coat healthy by removing dead hair, and preventing skin irritation which can lead to bad odors and smells.
Grooming typically includes trimming your dog's nails, brushing out the coat and removing any mats or tangles in their fur, cleaning their ears, wiping off their face and eyes with a damp cloth.
Because of their curly hair, a Cavapoo's coat can easily start to mat if they are not professionally groomed every 4-6 weeks.
2. Skin infection or allergy
Dogs can have a variety of skin infections or allergies that can make them smell. These are called pyoderma, seborrhea, and dermatitis.
Pyoderma: Dogs with an infection often have pus-filled sores on their skin and these sores often smell bad. The dog may also lick the sores excessively in an attempt to relieve the pain or itchiness.
Dermatitis: Dogs with dermatitis often develop patches of dry, itchy skin that will sometimes crack and bleed. In some cases, the rash may be moist and oily or scaly.
This condition is sometimes related to food allergies because exposure to certain foods might cause the condition to become worse over time.
Seborrhea: Seborrhea is characterized by oily, crusty, thick fur which can also smell bad.
All these conditions need Veterinary treatment and should be addressed as quickly as possible.
3. Oral health problems
You need to keep on top of your Cavapoo’s dental health.
The best way of maintaining oral health is through regular tooth brushing and professional pet dental cleanings.
There are many problems that can cause an animal’s breath to be smelly including periodontal disease, gum disease, or even underlying medical conditions like liver failure.
Bad breath in dogs can also be caused by them eating rotten or decomposing matter like dead birds or mice.
Regardless of the cause for bad breath in dogs, there are some steps you can take at home to help make their breath less smelly:
- Feed them a healthy balanced diet with plenty of fresh water
- Brush their teeth regularly (use a specially formulated pet toothpaste and toothbrush)
- Give them dental chews or good chew toys to help remove plague and tartar.
4. Diet issues
The most common cause of your Cavapoo smelling bad is poor diet.
Dogs are carnivores and their diet needs to be primarily made up of animal protein.
Your dog also needs a balanced diet, so they need food rich in nutrients, vitamins and minerals. This will help them maintain a healthy skin and coat, which will not only make them smell better, but also feel healthier.
Generally speaking, the more meat protein in your dog's dinner dish the better it is for their body and the greater likelihood that they will have less odor-causing bacteria on their skin surface.
5. Parasites on skin, hair, and nails
Cavapoos that are not bathed or groomed regularly can develop a bad odor from bacteria on their skin, hair, and nails.
The most common parasites that cause this type of smell are called Demodex mites, which live in the hair follicles and sebaceous glands of dogs’ skin.
These mites reproduce quickly and can cause dogs to itch or scratch excessively, in turn creating foul body odors; they also crawl out of the skin during grooming and leave behind a smelly dust on the dog’s coat.
Two other parasites that may cause bad smells are fleas and biting insects such as mosquitoes; these pests can result in an oily-smelling coat due to the insect saliva left behind when they bite into your dog.
When a dog has a healthy amount of water, it will be less likely to produce the chemical compounds that cause bad odors.
Dehydration can make your pet smell bad because they don't have enough water in their system.
It's important to keep your Cavapoo hydrated. If you notice that they are consistently thirsty, or urinating less frequently than usual, then there could be an issue with their hydration levels and they need more fluids and electrolytes.
7. Compacted, full or ruptured anal glands
Dogs have anal glands that periodically release fluid.
If these glands become fill, they will emit an odor. It is a distinct fishy smell that is more noticeable if the dog has been sitting in one place for a long time.
You will also notice your Cavapoo licking itself underneath it’s tail where it joins to their bum and when it does this, the smell becomes even stronger.
Your dog could also be dragging it’s backside along the ground. This does look funny but it’s actually not because it is showing that there is a serious problem that needs looking into.
These are sure signs that your dog has an issue with their anal glands and you will need to take them to the Vet for treatment.
If you catch it early enough then you will prevent the glands from rupturing which is very painful for your dog and also very costly to treat.
8. Urinary Infections
A UTI will make your Cavapoo urinate a lot more often than normal.
These dogs can end up with a terrible smelling urine that can also stain their coat making them smell really bad.
UTI’s in dogs is typically characterized by fever, lethargy, and a diminished appetite. A dog will often have a frequent need to urinate and will exhibit symptoms of pain or discomfort when urinating.
They typically will only be able to urinate a few drops of urine at a time.
If your dog has any of these symptoms then they urgently need Veterinary care.
Farts in dogs are caused by a build-up of air and gas in the intestines. The fermentation process causes this build-up, and it can happen more often when your dog eats foods that are high in protein or fiber.
This is perfectly normal as all animals have the occasional fart.
But sometimes when a dog has an upset stomach and passes gas, the smell of the gas can be very potent and have the potential to make people quickly vacate the room.
You should see the vet if your Cavapoo passes gas often, especially when not eating. It could be a sign of an intestinal disorder.
All dogs, at one point or another, will give off some smells. Cavapoos are no different.
The only time you need to be concerned with this is if the odor does not go away, even after adjusting your dog's diet and making sure they have regular grooming sessions.
If your Cavapoo stinks, you should inspect them for signs of the potential issues we've discussed above.
For the most part, you can expect the occasional release of gas or the typical ‘wet dog’ smell if your dog’s fur becomes wet.