Domestic dogs require a lot of care and grooming to ensure that ey are healthy and happy. One of the essential grooming products for dogs is shampoo.
When selecting the best shampoo for dogs, there are several things to consider as shampoo comes in contact with your dog’s skin and coat. If the shampoo is not appropriate for your dog’s coat type, skin conditions, and age, it can result in serious health issues.
This buyer’s guide will look at the best dog shampoos on the market as well as suitable ingredients, shampoo types, and health considerations. Included below are also washing instructions to optimize the benefit of your dog’s shampoo.
The 8 Best Dog Shampoo Brands in 2021
1. Earthbath All-Natural Pet Shampoo
This pet shampoo from Earthbath has a natural formula that contains oatmeal and aloe itch relief, making it suitable for dogs that suffer from dry and itchy skin. The formula also promotes skin health and moisturization to give your dog a shiny, healthy-looking coat.
The shampoo only contains natural ingredients, it is soap-free, and it is pH-neutral. The result is a product that cleans and deodorizes your pet’s coat and skin. If your dog has a topical flea application, you can rest assured that this shampoo will not wash it off.
- Natural formula with oatmeal and aloe
- The shampoo provides relief from itching and dry skin
- Suitable for use with topical flea applications
- All ingredients are 100% biodegradable, and the shampoo is cruelty-free
- Contains almond and vanilla essences, olive oil squalene, and renewable coconut-based cleansers
If you are serious about natural pet care, this shampoo is perfect for your dog. Earthbath natural pet shampoo is 100% biodegradable and cruelty-free. The shampoo is, however, only intended for application to your dog’s skin and coat.
A feature of this shampoo that many dog owners love is the subtle vanilla and almond oil scent that eliminates odors.
2. Pro Pet Works All Natural Oatmeal Shampoo + Conditioner
If your dog suffers from sensitive skin, or if it is allergic to foods, grass, and flea bites, this shampoo and conditioner may be your best option. This product contains no alcohol, sulfates, colors, or harsh chemicals.
The ingredients that treat sensitive skin and maintain the condition of your dog’s coat include organic Aloe Vera, almond oils, and vitamins A, D, and E. These ingredients are entirely natural, and they won’t irritate your dog’s nose and eyes when it is bath time.
- Made in the United States
- Contains a wide range of natural ingredients that include Aloe Vera and almond oils
- Suitable for dogs that suffer from sensitive skin and allergies
Other benefits of this shampoo and conditioner are that it eliminates that typical wet dog smell, and it detangles your dog’s fur to make brushing afterward easier. The product is also paraben- and cruelty-free.
The product consists of shampoo and conditioner and comes in a 17 fl. oz. bottle. To wash your dog with this product, wet its coat throughout with warm water, and apply enough product from the head to hindquarter to form a rich lather. Wait for five minutes before rinsing thoroughly.
3. Buddy Wash Original Lavender & Mint Dog Shampoo & Conditioner
Buddy Wash Original is a two-in-one shampoo and conditioner with a unique formula to clean and moisturize your dog’s coat. The original lavender and mint in the formula has a therapeutic effect on your dog and releases a relaxing scent which takes care of your dog’s odor.
This product’s ingredients include a coconut shampoo base, essence of lavender, and extracts of chamomile, rosemary, sage, nettle, and wheat protein. The shampoo also contains tea tree oil and vitamins E and C that contribute to your dog’s overall well-being.
- The product contains shampoo and conditioner
- The Aloe Vera promotes healthy skin and prevents hair loss
- Natural ingredients that include wheat protein, nettle, and rosemary extracts
- Free from soap and alcohol, and suitable for use on younger dogs
- The product has a soothing lavender and mint flavor
The Aloe Vera gel in the product alleviates allergies and prevents pruritus, hair loss, and skin lesions. The wheat protein extract is a natural deodorizing agent that helps your dog smell fresh. The product is free from alcohol or any other abrasive ingredients, and it is also suitable for use on puppies.
4. FURminator deShedding Ultra-Premium Shampoo
If your dog is a shedder, it means that you and your family are susceptible to allergies, there is always fur on your furniture and clothes, and you have to brush your dog regularly. Shedding is often the result of fleas, lice, or mites, sunburn, or contact with irritating or caustic substances.
The FURminator deShedding dog shampoo addresses shedding by reducing the undercoat. This product contains Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids, calendula extract, and papaya leaf extract. The formula is highly effective in moisturizing your dog’s skin and maintaining the health of its coat.
- Formulated to address shedding
- Contains Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids and extracts of calendula and papaya leaf
- The shampoo kills parasites and removes harmful substances from your dog’s fur
With this shampoo, you only have to wash your dog once a month. The product contains no soap or alcohol, and it is paraben and cruelty-free. Despite being free of abrasive substances, the shampoo is only suitable for dogs that are at least six weeks old.
Before applying the product, you have to dilute it to a rate of ten parts water to one part shampoo. As a result, one bottle will last you a relatively long time.
5. Paws & Pals Natural Dog-Shampoo and Conditioner
This product from Paws & Pals is formulated to clean your dog’s skin and coat and to kill all parasites like fleas and ticks. The shampoo also moisturizes your dog’s skin to prevent dry skin, hair loss, and other skin conditions.
Additionally, the shampoo deodorizes your dog’s coat and eliminates any odors as the result of dirt and perspiration. The product also detangles your dog’s fur and gives it a healthy and shiny appearance.
Ingredients of the Paws & Pals natural dog shampoo include essential oils like cedarwood and rosemary. The aloe also enhances the condition of your dog’s skin and alleviates the effect of allergies.
- The shampoo and conditioner promote healthy skin and coat
- The product contains a wide range of natural ingredients
- Suitable for use with puppies or cats
- Formulated to kill parasites like ticks and fleas
Other contents like pro-vitamin B5 hydrate and protect your dog’s coat and skin against harsh elements and health problems. If your dog suffers from a brittle coat, itchy skin, or dry skin, this shampoo may be an effective solution. The shampoo is made in the United States and is often recommended by vets.
6. Wahl 100% Natural Pet Gentle Puppy Shampoo
The Wahl 100% natural puppy shampoo is a cornflower and aloe pet shampoo that is specially formulated to cleanse and protect your puppy’s skin and coat. The shampoo is pH-balanced and free of alcohol, parabens, and PEG-80.
Some puppies are sensitive to pet care products because of delicate skin. This gentle formula contains a high concentration of a coconut-derived sodding agent, so you only have to apply a little product during a wash. The high concentration also means that a bottle will last you a long time.
- A gentle formula that is suitable for puppies and dogs with sensitive skin
- Cornflower and aloe to promote your dog’s well-being
- Cleansers are processed from plant-derived materials
- The product contains a high concentration of coconut-derived sodding agent
Thanks to the aloe content, the shampoo is also allergy-friendly. The moisturizing properties of the shampoo will leave your puppy with a healthy-looking coat and soft, hydrated skin. After a wash, your puppy will have a fresh, light scent, and will not have a chemical smell that is often associated with dog shampoos.
7. Fresh ‘n Clean Lambert Kay Scented Dog Shampoo
The Fresh ‘n Clean dog shampoo is specially formulated to cleanse and maintain the health of your dog’s coat without bleaching. The shampoo contains wheat proteins that protect and strengthen your dog’s coat. After a wash, this ingredient will give your dog’s coat a lasting and healthy appearance.
This product also contains Aloe Vera, a soothing agent that is antibacterial, antifungal, and anti-inflammatory. Aloe Vera also contains prostaglandins that alleviate allergies. If your dog has sensitive skin, shampoo is one of the viable options in this list.
Vitamin E in the shampoo reduces flakiness and promotes a healthy coat and skin. Because of its unique formula, this shampoo is ideal for dogs with white, creamy, or light-colored coats. After the wash, the shampoo will leave a pleasant, mild coconut scent.
- Aloe in the shampoo soothes and protects your dog against bacteria and inflammation
- The wheat proteins strengthen your dog’s coat
- The shampoo contains vitamin E that promotes the health of your dog’s skin
- Ideal for dogs with white or light-colored coats
- The shampoo doesn’t cause bleaching
Cleansers that are naturally processed from plant materials kill bacteria and other parasites like ticks and fleas.
8. Burt’s Bees Oatmeal Shampoo for Dogs
The Burt’s Bees shampoo contains several natural ingredients to cleanse, condition, moisturize, and soften your dog’s skin and coat.
These ingredients include colloidal oatmeal, a soothing solution that treats and prevents skin conditions like eczema, poison ivy, sunburn, and inflammation.
The shampoo also contains honey that has antioxidants and antiseptic- and antibacterial properties.
- Specially formulated with natural ingredients
- Contains colloidal oatmeal, honey, and beeswax
- pH-balanced and suitable for dogs of all ages
This shampoo is completely safe for dogs, and it is free of fragrances, sulfates, colorants, and other harsh chemicals. Other advantages of this product are that it is pH-balanced and made in the United States.
How to Choose the Right Dog Shampoo
Having read our review of the best dry dog foods in the market, you’re probably ready to do one of two things right now. Either you’re prepared to run out and purchase new dog food for your best friend, or you’re even more confused now with all the options that we’ve given. You may be overwhelmed with all the new vitamin and nutrient information that you’ve only just discovered. Don’t worry; we have you covered!
The first thing you have to consider is whether your dog is allergic to anything. An allergic reaction can have serious consequences, and you want to avoid it at all costs. If you are not sure if your dog is allergic to the ingredients in a shampoo, you can carry out a patch test, which involves applying a little shampoo on your dog’s skin and checking for reactions.
Another crucial consideration is the pH. A dog’s skin pH differs from a human’s in that it is more alkaline. Human shampoos and even cheaper dog shampoos have a pH that ranges from around 4.5 to 5.5, which is too acidic.
Dog shampoo’s pH should be around 6 or 7, which is on the basic side of neutral. If you use a shampoo with a lower pH, it can result in skin irritation and dryness.
If your dog suffers from sensitive skin, any dog shampoo will not suffice. You need a special shampoo that is formulated for sensitive skin with soothing ingredients like oatmeal or Aloe Vera. These ingredients alleviate itching and skin irritations, as they are antibacterial and anti-inflammatory. They also have a cooling effect on your dog’s skin.
There are generally three skin types, namely oily, dry, and normal. Shampoo that is not appropriate for your dog’s skin type can increase oiliness or dryness, which can result in skin conditions.
Most high-end shampoos are specially formulated for specific skin types. Consult your vet if you are not sure what your dog’s skin type is.
The color of your dog’s coat is another factor that determines the type of shampoo you should buy. If your dog has a white coat, it is particularly susceptible to yellowing or staining. Whitening shampoo is ideal for dogs with white coats, but stay away from shampoos that contain bleaching agents.
Approved and Biodegradable
Before buying a dog shampoo, make sure that the FDA approves it. A product that is not approved may not be effective in cleaning and promoting the health of your dog’s skin and coat. Unapproved products may also be harmful to your dog’s health.
Ideally, the dog shampoo you use should also be biodegradable. Organic shampoos are eco-friendly, and they are more effective in maintaining the health of your dog’s skin and coat than chemical-based shampoos.
Not all shampoos are the same, and you may have to purchase a product that is specially formulated for a specific objective or treatment.
Shampoos for Parasites
Your dog’s fur is the ideal breeding ground for parasites like ticks. Shampoos for ticks and fleas are specially formulated to kill harmful parasites. After washing your dog, you can use a comb to remove the insects from your dog’s fur.
Most shampoos have antibacterial properties, but if your dog has pertinent a problem with ticks and fleas, look for a product that has a unique formula.
Shampoos for Itching and Septic Soothing
If your dog suffers from itching, skin sores, or inflammation, you need a shampoo for sensitive skin. These products usually contain ingredients like Aloe Vera, oatmeal, and vitamin E. These shampoos have a prominent moisturizing ability, and they have anti-inflammatory properties.
Shampoos for Puppies
Puppies typically have delicate skin and sensitive eyes. As a result, regular dog shampoo may cause them discomfort. Shampoos for puppies usually have no-tear formulas to make bath time easier for them and you.
Neutralizing or Deodorizing Shampoo
Many dogs suffer from body odor. It may be because of bacteria or yeast secretions (for example, skin oils). Neutralizing or deodorizing shampoos refresh your dog’s scent and kill odors that are caused by things like ringworms and yeast infections.
In severe cases, you may have to select a shampoo that contains ingredients like chlorhexidine, which is an antiseptic that kills bacteria.
Why You Should Use Only Dog Shampoo
There are several reasons why you should never use human shampoo to wash your dog. Human shampoo contains harsh chemicals that can cause skin irritations. The shampoo can also remove your natural protectants on your dog’s skin, leaving it susceptible to infections.
Many people wrongly believe that baby shampoo is suitable for dogs. However, baby shampoo doesn’t have the correct pH for a dog’s skin, and it will dry out your dog’s coat.
Human shampoo is also not suitable for dogs as these products are not hypoallergenic, they are not effective in killing parasites, and they can result in hair loss and rashes.
How to Wash a Dog
Washing your dog is a simple process that can be enjoyable to both of you. Before washing your dog, brush it thoroughly to get rid of matted hair. The water you use to wash your dog should be lukewarm, as dogs are more sensitive to hot water than we are.
Apply dog shampoo by working it into a lather and massaging it all over the body. Take care not to let the shampoo get in contact with your dog’s eyes.
After applying the shampoo, you have to rinse it thoroughly to prevent skin irritation when it dries. You may have to rinse your dog a few times, depending on how long its fur is.
When you are done, air dry your dog or use a blow dryer that is designed for dogs. Human blow dryers are too hot for dogs and can burn them.
Talk to your dog in a reassuring and calming voice during the bath. This will keep your dog calm and make future washing sessions easier. When your dog is dry, give it a treat as a reward for its good behavior. Your dog will start associating bath time with a pleasant experience and start enjoying it.
How Often Should You Wash Your Dog
You don’t have to wash your dog every day. However, you have to wash them regularly to keep them clean and healthy. How often you should wash your dog depends on its coat.
As a rule, you can wash your dog once a month. However, if your dog has an oily coat, you have to wash it once a week. Breeds with short hair and smooth coats, on the other hand, need less frequent baths.
Dogs with thick coats also need fewer baths, but you have to brush them regularly to get rid of dead skin cells and loose hair. Dogs with water-repellent coats like Labrador Retrievers have natural oils, and you can wash them once every two months or less.
How often you should wash your dog depends on its lifestyle as well. If your dog stays indoors, it doesn’t need regular baths. However, if your dog loves mud, your trash bags, and outdoor activities, you will have to wash it more often.