Why Does My Cavapoo Smell? How To Make It Smell Better?

What’s that smell? There is nothing worse than your beloved Cavapoo (aka Cavoodle) approaching for an intimate cuddle only to envelop you in an unpleasant pong. Regrettably, no dog is immune to stinking, but fortuitously the Cavapoo’s Cavalier and Poodle parents are well-known stink-free breeds. Diet, hygiene, and other external factors are the root cause of these smelly problems. Luckily with the correct care and know-how, these can be easily avoided.

Why Does My Cavapoo Smell and How to Make it Smell Better

What Sets Off My Cavapoos Pong?

The most common cause for a smelly Cavapoo is a dirty coat or ear infection. Other possible triggers are skin and urinary infections, mouth hygiene problems, poor digestion, anal gland compaction, and kidney disease. Unpleasant odors from eye tearing and as well as complaints of unpleasant Cavapoo puppy smells are lesser-known concerns.

The key is to address the issue causing the smell immediately or use preventative measures to avoid these internal and external factors posing a problem.

Let’s investigate these triggers in more detail.

Matted Dirty Coats Cause Cavapoo to Smell

Cavapoo with Overgrown Coat - Why Does My Cavoodle Cavapoo Smell
Cavapoo with Overgrown Coat

I don’t know one dog that doesn’t enjoy rolling and rubbing itself on dead objects, poos, and other foul-smelling dirt and soil. Sadly, I am no stranger to this. Frantically chasing my dogs on walks to stop them rolling on bird poo is one of my least enjoyable pass times.

This habit along with romping outside in the rain or at the beach can make our furry friends’ coats smell bad. Moisture increases the production of odor-causing yeasts and bacteria on the skin.

How to Avoid Cavapoo Odor Caused by a Dirty Coat

Cavapoo Having a Bath - Why Does My Cavapoo Cavoodle Smell bad
Cavapoo Having a Bath

Maintaining clean bedding and regular grooming will prevent skin irritation and odor by removing dead skin and dirt from your dog’s coat.  

Bathing your Cavapoo also helps. It is recommended to bathe your Cavapoo once a fortnight to maintain a healthy coat. Some owners can stretch this to more like 6-8 weeks but the pong may become too much. Sprinkling baking soda on your Cavapoos hair before brushing is also effective for absorbing bad odors.

Removing Skunk Stench From Your Cavapoos Coat

If your Cavapoo is unlucky enough to stumble upon a Skunk, Skunk spray is your best option for removing the stench.

Other natural remedies such as 1 part tomato juice and 2 parts vinegar are not as effective but do help.

Alternatively, here is a widely used Skunk removal recipe: 1 quart (1 litre) 3% hydrogen peroxide solution, ¼ cup baking soda, and 1 teaspoon dishwashing liquid. Rub on your Cavapoos coat and rinse off quickly to avoid bleaching their fur.

Skunk-Off is the recommended skunk odor remover for dogs. Due to their popularity, these skunk spray options sell out quickly. I suggest stocking up when you can, so you are not left in a stinky situation.

Cavapoo Ear Infections Cause Them to Smell

Cavapoo Dog in the Pool - Why Does My Cavapoo Smell How to make it Smell Better
Cavapoo in the Pool

Bacterial and yeast ear infections are another common reason for Cavapoo odor problems.  Cavapoos love to swim and excessive hair growth inside and on their ears can aggravate the problem. If your furry friend is shaking their head, pawing, and rubbing their ears on surfaces and their ears look notably red and sore, it is time to act.

The overgrowth of earwax and sebum production is the root cause of ear infections. Regular proper cleaning of your Cavapoos ears using an ear cleaning solution can prevent and assist in clearing up a recently started infection.  

I always use the Virbac EPIOTIC Advanced Ear Cleanser when my dog’s ears flare up and 9 out of 10 times I avoid a full-blown ear infection.

Cavapoo Skin Infections Cause Them to Smell

The overproduction of oil on your Cavapoo’s skin can produce a nasty smell. This smell can be set off by parasites such as mites, fleas, and mosquitos. Mites living in your dog’s hair follicles and glands, as well as insect saliva left behind after bites, can make your dog scratch, triggering nasty smells. Licking of the area can also start a secondary infection which will intensify the smell.

Other reasons for the overproduction of skin oils and a smelly coat can be if your Cavapoo has a yeast infection or is suffering from a skin allergy such as pyoderma, seborrhea, dermatitis, or atopy. Food allergies, bad diet, and hormonal imbalances are other yeast-inducing culprits.

Avoiding Cavapoo Skin Infections

Ensuring your Cavapoo has a regular flea treatment will go a long way to avoid allergic reactions which lead to infection. Try also not to deplete your Cavapoo’s natural skin oils by overbathing them.  

Your vet may prescribe medicated shampoos or oral medications if the infection is bad. Improvement can take several weeks to clear.

I have found it useful to bathe my dog regularly with SynergyLabs Veterinary Antiparasitic Antiseborrheic Medicated Shampoo, the moment I notice any skin discomfort. This calms the flare-up and usually avoids an antibiotic or cortisone prescription from the vet.

Cavapoo Mouth Hygiene Problems Cause a Smell

The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel and the Poodle both have small mouths which make them susceptible to dental problems.

Regardless of this hereditary concern, most dog breeds can develop stinky breath over time. This is usually related to digestion or teeth problems. Other causes for bad breath in your Cavapoo are medical conditions such as liver failure as well as periodontal and gum disease.

Your Cavapoo needs a good quality balanced diet rich in minerals, vitamins, and nutrients that comprise mainly of animal protein. Low-quality food with preservatives, additives, and too many carbohydrates will lead to increased tartar build-up on your Cavapoos teeth. This tartar build-up can lead to bacterial infection which will result in bad breath.

How do I prevent my Cavapoo From Developing Bad Breath?

Brushing your Cavapoo’s teeth daily or at least every 3 days with a finger brush or doggie toothbrush will help prevent tartar build-up. Professional dental cleaning is also recommended at least once a year.

Chew toys and dental sticks or rope toys are an easy way for your dogs to clean their own teeth. Effective safe methods are adding approximately 1 tsp of coconut oil or sprinkling parsley, kelp, or mint onto your dog’s food.  You can also add 1 tbsp of apple cider vinegar to their water bowl. This helps with digestion and has anti-inflammatory and antibacterial benefits.

Bear in mind that these changes will not be effective without the introduction of a balanced diet.  

Recommended Cavapoo Dental Hygiene Products:

Jasper 360 Dog Fingerbrush Toothbrush Kit

This toothbrush is easy to use and is gentle on your Cavapoo’s small mouth. I love that this product is reusable and highly rated.

Vet’s Best Enzymatic Dog Toothpaste

This toothpaste has an easy squeeze tube and is completely natural.  

Virbac CET Enymatic Toothpaste

If your Cavapoo is fussy, this poultry-flavored toothpaste will make tooth brushing a treat rather than a chore.

Cavapoo’s Poor Digestion and Flatulence Cause a Smell

If your Cavapoo is regularly sharing their not-so-sweet music with you this is a clear indication that they are suffering from digestive issues. Diet, as well as food allergies, are usually the root cause of this build-up of air and gas in the intestines.

Do your furry friend a favor and stop dropping treats on the floor and take a good look at their dog food ingredients. A protein diet with some vegetables and fruit works well but try to avoid food with carbohydrates and grains which can aggravate the gassy problem.

Ensure your Cavapoo also has access to water throughout the day.  A hydrated dog is less likely to produce the chemical compounds that cause flatulence. Adding a probiotic to their diet will also help to support your Cavapoos immune system and fight off any unwanted bacteria from forming in their gut.

I would recommend Zesty Paws Probiotics for Dogs and Purina FortiFlora Probiotics. These make a great addition to your Cavapoos diet.

Cavapoo Anal Gland Compaction Causes a Smell

If you see your Cavapoo scooting across the floor on their bottoms, licking and chewing their rear ends, or smelling slightly fishy, it may be time to take them to your nearest vet. It is important to recognize the signs of anal compaction early. If left untreated, compaction can lead to abscesses and other problems.

Where and What are Anal Glands?

Many Cavapoos never have a problem, but others may need anal gland assistance on a regular basis. The anal glands can be described as 2 lumps positioned on the left and right of your dog’s rectal opening.  When your Cavapoo does their business a small amount of brown smelly substance is excreted which assists the poo to come out easily and smoothly as well as marks their territory.

Feeding your Cavapoo low-quality foods can result in soft stools which result in their poo not being able to press the anal glands sufficiently enough to express the substance. If your Cavapoo’s glands remain full, bacteria can develop leading to infection.

Correcting Anal Gland Compaction in your Cavapoo

It is possible to alleviate the anal gland pressure yourself but given that this job is very unpleasant and stinky most people make an appointment at their nearest vet.

Doing it yourself would involve pressing gently but firmly on your Cavapoos anal glands to express the brown substance. A warm bath and wet cloth to wipe the dog’s rear end after expressing are recommended.

A change in diet is key to avoiding this messy, stinky, and uncomfortable situation.

Cavapoo Urinary Infections Cause Them to Smell

Urinary infections are quite common in most dog breeds (especially female dogs) and are caused by pathogens attacking the urinary tract as well as from exposure to contaminated water.  Not only will your Cavapoo’s urine smell sour or like rotten fish but if infected it can also give off a metallic smell.

If your Cavapoo develops any signs of a UTI, it is recommended to get them to a vet as soon as possible. It can take several days to analyze your dog’s urine and most vets will prescribe an antibiotic while waiting for results.

How to Detect a UTI in your Cavapoo

Look out for signs such as cloudy dark urine, licking of the genital area as well as accidental and frequent peeing. If there is already an infection, your Cavapoo could also suffer from a fever or a lack of appetite.

To avoid urinary infection and smelly urine ensure your Cavapoo has access to enough water and that they are urinating every few hours. Regular bathing and keeping your Cavapoo’s genital area clean are vital for avoiding bacterial infections.

Kidney Disease in Cavapoos Causes a Smell

If your Cavapoo’s breath smells like ammonia, their urine smells metallic, and they are drinking excessively, have your furry friend checked for kidney problems.

Kidney problems are unfortunately one of the few hereditary problems passed down from the Cavalier King Spaniel to the Cavapoo. Dogs can get very sick if their kidneys are not working effectively, as kidneys aid in balancing the waste in their bodies.   

Luckily if diagnosed early and treated successfully your Cavapoo will not only be a happier healthier dog, but the bad odor will also disappear.  Treatment usually comes in the form of antibiotics, diuretics, IV fluids and in rare unfortunate circumstances, surgery.

Why Does my Cavapoo Puppy Smell?

Cavapoo Puppy - Why Does My Cavapoo Cavoodle Puppy Smell
Cavapoo Puppy

A not so common complaint would be the natural distinctively strong smell of a Cavapoo puppy. This smell is fortunately not something to be concerned about and will not hang around for too long.

Cavapoo puppies lose their puppy teeth and new teeth pushing through the gums can leave behind a metallic smelling odor. The smell originates from the puppies bloody ruptured gums. Providing your Cavapoo puppy with a selection of chew toys will help control the smell and getting them used to a tooth brushing routine at an early age will prevent future tooth and mouth complications.

Don’t be tempted to change your puppy’s diet as their gastrointestinal tract is still developing and changing foods will not resolve the puppy odor.

Some good teething chew toy options for your Cavapoo puppy can be found in pet stores or online.  The KIPRITII 18 Pack Teething Chew Toys provides an excellent selection of chew toys at an affordable price and the Nylabone Puppy Starter Kit with Chew Toys is a highly rated teething option.

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