What Is the Best Dog Shampoo?
Every dog owner in the world will eventually have to bathe their dogs. There's no giving a dog a bath without using a shampoo for dogs. It doesn’t matter what size, age or breed the dog is; you need the best dog shampoo that is specifically made for canines, and that's also affordable for pet owners. Today, there are hundreds of different dog shampoo formulas: for dogs with allergies, different coat types and even medicated dog shampoos that will help to heal hot spots and other skin conditions.
* Scroll down to watch our detailed VIDEO REVIEW of the #1 best shampoo for dogs pick.
I selected Earthbath All-Natural Oatmeal & Aloe Dog Shampoo as my number one pick (read my review below on why).
As its name suggests, this is an all-natural pet shampoo. The main perk is that you don't have to worry about toxic chemicals affecting your dog’s skin. This product is 100 percent biodegradable and is cruelty free. This all-natural dog shampoo is also soap-free and smells great. It is a safe, effective and gentle shampoo for dogs that works well and is definitely affordable.
After a lot of research looking for the best shampoo for dogs that I can use with my own pooch, after bathing my own three dogs and sifting through information from pet care professionals, I have come up with a list of what I believe are the ten best dog shampoo products.
Compare TOP 10 Best Dog Shampoo Brands (reviewed below):
|Top Dog Shampoos||Price||Quality||Rating|
|Earthbath All-Natural Oatmeal & Aloe Shampoo||$||A+||4.6/5|
|FURminator deShedding Ultra Premium Shampoo||$$||A||4.5/5|
|Burt’s Bees Tearless Puppy Shampoo||$||A||4.5/5|
|Synergy Labs Veterinary Clinical Care Medicated Shampoo||$||A||4.5/5|
|Pet Oatmeal and Aloe Vera Shampoo||$$||B||4.1/5|
|Zymox Enzymatic Shampoo||$$||B+||4.4/5|
|Buddy Wash Lavender & Mint||$||A-||4.7/5|
|Wahl Oatmeal Dog Shampoo||$$||B+||4.5/5|
|Pro Sense Shed Control Shampoo||$||B-||4.0/5|
|Wondercide Flea & Tick Natural Shampoo Bar||$$||B||4.3/5|
* Please click on the dog shampoo brand for more product details and prices. Alternatively, scroll down to read reviews of each product.
Every dog should be bathed at least a few times each year, and he needs to be washed with the best dog shampoo that is made for his unique skin and fur type. Washing your pet with human shampoo is a big no-no! Prolonged use of human shampoo can completely ruin your dog’s skin. This is because canine skin has a different pH balance  than human skin. Using human shampoo on a dog will do long term damage to his skin and coat. Although it may be a cheaper option, it’ll end up costing you big time in the long run.
Your pet’s skin and coat is his first line of defense against germs and bacteria. If his skin isn’t healthy, your dog’s overall health and well-being will suffer. Maintaining your dog's skin and coat are also essential for your dog’s general comfort. Matted hair and itchy skin can both cause a lot of physical pain for your Fido.
Although dog grooming consists of caring for your pet’s entire outer body, his skin and coat are the largest part of that. The most essential thing you can do to promote skin and coat health is to bathe your dog regularly to keep him clean. Oils, dirt and bacteria build up in your pet’s fur and a traditional bath with dog shampoo and water is the only way to really get him clean. Waterless shampoos  can be used in between bathing, but there is nothing that you can do to help your pet more than giving him a traditional bath.
In case Earthbath All-Natural Oatmeal & Aloe Dog Shampoo isn't available, I recommend that you take a look at a similar product – 4-Legger Certified Organic All-Natural Dog Shampoo. This top quality dog shampoo is made with organic oils, organic Aloe Vera, essential oils and rosemary extract as a preservative.
Not only is this dog shampoo eco-friendly, but it’s mild on your dog’s skin and is also made in the United States. This pet shampoo is safe, gentle and non-toxic. It foams nicely and rinses clean. 4-Legger dog shampoo is specifically formulated to clean, deodorize, moisturize and condition your dog’s skin and coat without stripping the natural oils or washing off existing flea and tick treatments.
The Best Dog Shampoo (VIDEO)
Earthbath All-Natural Oatmeal & Aloe Dog Shampoo Review
Now more than ever, pet parents need to pay attention to the dog products that they are using on their pets. More and more recalls are happening all the time and manufacturers seem to be more concerned with making a dollar than the safety of the products that they are creating. It’s scary to think that these dog supplies we buy for our dogs could actually do more harm than good.
In my opinion, you don't have to worry about causing harm to your dog's skit and coat with Earthbath All-Natural Oatmeal & Aloe Dog Shampoo. This is possibly the safest dog shampoo that you can use to wash your dog’s skin and fur. When I first started researching this product, I read that it is soap-free.
Soap-free? Why would a shampoo be soap-free? Isn’t the whole point of shampoos for dogs to contain soap for cleaning hair and skin? Not really, and here's why.
Believe it or not, your dog’s skin is more sensitive than a baby’s, and Earthbath pet shampoo is pH balanced to be milder on Fido’s skin than soap. Soap can dry out canine skin and leave residue in your dog’s fur. This is a major cause of dandruff and itching in dogs . Soap is also more likely to wash off any type of topical treatments that you may use on your dog including treatments for fleas and ticks.
Earthbath dog products are phthalate free and paraben free. Phthalates are molecules that are found in many fragrances, and they are linked to birth defects. Parabens are a group of chemicals that are used as preservatives in many products, including human and pet shampoos. In 1998, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released a report that stated parabens such as butyl, methyl, ethyl and propyl varieties cause “estrogenic activity.” That means that they may imitate hormones found in the body and have a negative effect on the endocrine system, and should be avoided in dog shampoos as well .
Dry, itchy skin is a big problem for many dogs. My pick of the best dog shampoo is specifically formulated with oatmeal and aloe to relieve itching and address the needs of pets with dry skin, as other experts and reviewers have already confirmed. It's also the best smelling dog shampoo I have ever tried.
The combination of oatmeal and aloe allow this dog shampoo to combat skin irritation, re-moisturize sensitive, dry skin, and promote healing.
Not all pet shampoos are safe for puppies, but you can use Earthbath's dog shampoo on all dogs over 6 weeks old. It won’t wash off topical flea treatments either, which is what we use on our dogs to fend off the disease-carrying pests. I’ve been using this dog shampoo on both of our dogs for about six months, and we've never had any trouble with their flea and tick treatments being removed. They lasted just as long as they always do, so I know this pet shampoo did not hinder their effectiveness.
The ingredients in this best dog shampoo include: purified water, colloidal oatmeal (3%), renewable plant-derived and coconut0based cleansers, aloe vera, vitamins A, B, D, and E, glycerin, allantoin, food-grade extracts of vanilla and almond (which makes it one of the best smelling dog shampoos), and a natural preservative. It does not contain gluten, soap, DEA parabens, SLS/SLES , synthetic dyes or perfumes, or enzymes. Earthbath's All-Natural dog shampoo is 100 percent biodegradable.
Runner-up: Best Deshedding Dog Shampoo
Excessive shedding in dogs is another common problem in many pet-owning households. For dog owners who may not need a soothing shampoo for dogs like the Earthbath, you may be interested in a best deshedding dog shampoo. FURminator is known for their deshedding grooming tools, but did you know they’ve also created an effective deshedding dog shampoo?
Best shampoo for dogs should be safe for the pet, and also give the owner what they want for the price. If you’ve got a dog that sheds a lot, why not try removing some of that unwanted hair with an anti-shedding dog shampoo? The blend of ingredients in FURminator deShedding Ultra Premium Shampoo help to reduce the amount of excess loose hair by releasing the undercoat during bathing.
This shampoo contains the following ingredients: water, mild surfactants, omega 3 and 6 fatty acids from cranberry, sunflower and safflower seed oils, extracts of calendula, papaya leaf, chamomile, malva flower, blueberry, aloe vera and kava vitamin E, vegetable protein extract, hydrolyzed wheat and oat proteins, fragrance, a preservative and salt. There are no parabens, artificial colors or chemical dyes in this shampoo.
The company specifies that this shampoo for dogs should be used monthly in order to get the most effective hair removal. They also say that it is to be used in the FURminator deshedding regiment, meaning that this product helps to loosen the dead hair from your dog’s coat, but only some of that hair is washed away during the dog bathing process. Some of the loosened dog hair will still be in your pet’s coat, and you’ll need to brush him to remove that hair.
You’ll find that after you use a product like this you’ll be able to brush a lot of hair off your dog.
Please note that deshedding shampoo for dogs will not be a “cure-all” formula to allow you avoid grooming your pet and using dog grooming tools. Pet owners will still need to brush their dogs. This second best shampoo for dogs simply helps to remove some of the loose, dead hair that is entangled in your pet’s coat. It’s a little deceptive, as most pet parents believe that deshedding shampoo for dogs should remove the hair completely, but that isn’t exactly the case. It will help reduce shedding, but you’ll have to do a little work as well.
Compared to brushing your dog after a bath with a traditional dog shampoo, FURminator deShedding Shampoo will help to release a lot more fur. This best dog shampoo is made in the United States, and aside from loosening dead hair it also promotes a healthy skin and coat in dogs, as well as leaves your canine looking great and smelling clean. It's another great option for the best smelling dog shampoo.
Best Dog Shampoo for Puppies
For the same reasons that you shouldn’t wash your dog with human shampoo, you also shouldn’t wash your puppy with shampoo that is made for adult dogs. Your puppy's young skin is just as sensitive as the skin of a human baby. The harsh chemicals, perfumes and dyes in adult dog shampoo can irritate the delicate skin of a puppy.
When you're looking to bathe a young dog, you need to get the best dog shampoo for puppies. Products like Burt’s Bees Tearless Puppy Shampoo are designed to get your puppy clean and completely wash out of his fur without hurting any of his skin. These puppy shampoos do not leave residue that would irritate your pup’s skin. This product is also tearless, which is an ideal quality to have in the best puppy shampoo. It’s hard to keep a young dog still while you’re trying to wash him, and it’s inevitable that he will get shampoo in his eyes at some point.
This dog shampoo for a puppy is made with buttermilk to help soothe and soften your canine's skin. It contains no sulfates or colorants, and it is a cruelty free product. Burt’s Bees makes this puppy shampoo with water, coco betaine, coco glucoside, glyceryl oleate, disodium cocoyl glutamate, vegetable glycerin, xanthan gum, honey, beeswax, buttermilk powder, potassium sorbate and sodium benzoate.
That ingredient list of Burt's Bees Puppy Shampoo may not sound natural to you, but all these ingredients have been confirmed to not be harmful to a puppy. Additionally, I've done a quick Google search about the dog shampoo ingredients  and I found out that coco betaine, coco glucoside, vegetable glycerin and disodium cocoyl glutamate are all derived from coconut oil, as you may expect. Glyceryl oleate is produced from oil containing high concentrations of oleic acid including peanut oil, olive oil, teaseed oil or pecan oil. Xanthan gum is also plant-based. It is a thickening and stabilizing agent. Potassium sorbate and sodium benzoate are both natural preservatives.
Best Medicated Dog Shampoo
Some dogs require treatment of their coat or skin with a medicated dog shampoo. A top-quality medicated shampoo like Synergy Labs Veterinary Medicated Shampoo can treat skin scaling caused by Seborrhea, treat fungal and bacterial skin infections, and relieve mange and other parasitic infections in dogs. These best medicated dog shampoos can also help get rid of inflamed scalp, waxy and greasy skin, skin rashes and scaly skin (similar to dandruff).
Synergy Labs Veterinary Formula Clinical Care Antiparasitic & Antiseborrheic Medicated Shampoo also contains allantoin and colloidal oatmeal, which promote healing and hydrate the skin.
Synergy Labs' best dog shampoo with medications is paraben, dye and soap free. It combines coal tar, salicylic and micronized sulfur in a powerful medicated shampoo that is proven to treat a number of skin conditions including Seborrheic Dermatitis . Seborrheic Dermatitis is a skin disorder that can be the result of yeast or bacterial infections, and it can also be genetic. This disorder is common in canines.
When using a medicated shampoo for dogs like this one from Synergy Labs, you’ll need to bathe your dog two or three times a week until the symptoms clear up. Then you can use it less frequently as a preventative measure. Before using any type of medicated dog shampoos, you should check with your veterinarian to make sure that it will be effective for the skin condition(s) that your dog has. Although, Synergy Labs Veterinary Dog Shampoo is often recommended by vets for dogs that require assistance from a medicated dog shampoo.
Best Dog Shampoo for Itchy Skin
My number one pick for the best dog shampoo is a great option for dogs with itchy skin. It cleans, deodorizes and helps to soothe your canine's skin and coat, and is probably the best smelling dog shampoo there is. However, if you’re unsure about that product, or you're looking specifically for a shampoo to help your itching dog, Oatmeal and Aloe Vera Shampoo from Healthy Clean Pet is by far the best choice.
Many experts and dog owners have agreed this to be one of the best dog shampoos for the itchy skin. Its potent anti-itch formula is scientifically developed in the company’s state-of-the-art laboratory by pet skin care experts. The ingredients include oatmeal and Aloe Vera extracts, rinsing and moisturizing agents, lauryl betaine (a synthetic, vegetable-derived liquid that is used as a hair conditioner), salt, coconut fragrance and purified water.
Consumers love the coconut fragrance, and rave about this shampoos ability to leave your dog’s coat shiny and radiant. Because this shampoo for dogs works at skin level, it moisturizes and conditions the skin, which gives your canine's coat a gorgeous luster. The health of your dog’s skin is directly related to the health of his coat. This doggy shampoo from Healthy Clean Pet helps reduce the irritation that causes itching and scratching in dogs.
Bear in mind that Oatmeal and Aloe Vera Shampoo this is not a medicated shampoo like the one from Synergy Labs, so if your dog has an underlying infection or condition, like dog skin allergies, that is causing the itching, this pet shampoo will not help. If your canine is constantly scratching, it is best to have his skin examined by a veterinarian before using any type of dog shampoos to bathe him. If you choose the wrong shampoo for the dog, it could end up irritating his skin even more and making the situation worse.
The Bottom Line
Pet shampoos for dogs come in many varieties based on your pet's skin and coat type. If you need something specific like an itch relief, a medicated dog shampoo or a shampoo for dogs that shed excessively, look for that specific type among the best dog shampoos. If you're looking for a general purpose dog shampoo to have on hand for a canine with average skin and no sensitivities or allergies, Earthbath All-Natural Oatmeal & Aloe Dog Shampoo is a great choice.
Now, let's talk more about the details on how these choices for the best shampoo for dogs have been made, and what other alternatives are there in case my top five picks aren't suitable.
Table of Contents
- What you should know before buying
- What do I know about dog shampoo?
- Can dog shampoo improve my dog’s health?
- Who should buy dog shampoo?
- How I chose these dog shampoos
- How I researched and evaluated each brand of dog shampoo
- My pick for the best dog shampoo
- Who else likes it?
- Flaws but not deal breakers
- The runner-up
- If my other picks aren’t available
- A pick for fleas and ticks
- What to look forward to
- Wrapping it up
- References and further reading
What you should know before buying
Before buying any of the best dog shampoo products on this list, you need to know what your dog's individual needs are. First consider his age. This is really only necessary if your dog is under 1 year. Some shampoos cannot be used on puppies under 8 weeks, 12 weeks, 6 months or even a year old. The chemicals in these shampoos may be too harsh for a young dog’s skin.
You’ll also need to consider your dog’s skin and hair type. Is his skin greasy or dry? Does he have long hair or short hair? Is it curly or straight? The answers to these questions will help you decide which product to buy.
Be sure to get a shampoo that is specifically formulated for your dog’s skin and coat type.
If your pup has any skin conditions  or medical issues that affect his skin or coat, make sure you consult with your vet before buying anything. These types of conditions can be caused by something as simple as feeding your pet the wrong type of dog food. The chemicals in the doggy shampoo you buy may irritate your dog’s skin more and cause even more problems. Medicated dog shampoos are all designed to treat different conditions, so make sure to do your research and ask your vet if you have any questions at all.
I also need to take a minute to get on my soapbox and ask you to think about the importance of selecting safe products for your dog. As I mentioned earlier, human shampoos are not pH balanced to help the skin of a dog. I know they are cheaper, but in this case you’ll get what you pay for.
Dog shampoos aren’t all the same quality either. Spending a little more on a bottle of pet shampoo will get you a much higher quality product. All-natural products are a great choice, considering that you’re putting the shampoo directly onto your dog’s skin. Shampoos made with harsh and toxic chemicals can leach through your pet’s skin and do a great deal of harm to his body.
Consider spending a few more dollars and getting a product that is 100 percent safe for your pet and better for the environment. I'm always looking for ways to save money, and sometimes that means spending a little more up front and reaping the savings later. A bottle of shampoo goes a long way, so buying a better quality dog shampoo will probably only increase your family budget by about $10-$20 per year.
What do I know about dog shampoo?
To be frank, I’ve learned more about dog shampoo in the last two weeks than I ever knew before. However, when you think about it, many of the warnings about dog shampoo are the same as lots of other pet products as well. Selecting a product that is as natural as possible, spending a little extra money to get a better quality product, and making sure that you buy a product that is made specifically for your dog are words of advice that you should follow when making any kind of purchase for your canine companion.
Being a dog owner for more than 20 years has given me the opportunity to use many different pet shampoos. I’ve used store brand dog shampoo and more expensive all-natural shampoo, and you can definitely tell a big difference in your pet’s coat depending on which you use. I’ve also used medicated shampoo before, but it was only for a short period of time when one of our boxers had a rash. I’ve never had a dog with a chronic skin condition that required long term use of a medicated shampoo, but I can say that it sure cleared that rash up pretty quickly.
Also, my experience working for Top Dog Tips over the last year has also helped me acquire a lot of knowledge about pet products. I’ve written articles and done research on everything from dog beds to grooming products. I’ve read thousands of articles and customer reviews, and I’ve gotten a lot of information about the different kinds of pet shampoos available . It certainly doesn’t make me an expert, but it does make me knowledgeable on the subject.
Can dog shampoos improve my dog’s health?
As you can tell from all the information provided in this article so far, the best dog shampoo can absolutely improve your pet’s health. The right shampoo can promote and maintain your dog’s skin and coat health. Medicated shampoos can clear up many different skin issues from bacteria and fungus to rashes and dry skin.
Your dog’s fur and skin are his first line of defense against germs and bacteria. By bathing him regularly, you’re keeping that defense clean and strong so it can protect him. Not only can the best dog shampoo improve your dog’s physical health, it can also improve his mental health too. Mats and tangles can cause your pet a lot of pain and discomfort. By taking care of his coat you’ll be saving him a lot of stress and agony.
Who should buy dog shampoo?
I don’t see pet shampoo as an option that some people need and others do not. Every pet parent should have a bottle of dog shampoo on hand at all times. Even if you take your dog to the groomers, you still may need to bathe him at home sometimes. Dogs are unpredictable by nature, they roll in things, enjoy playing in the mud and are very messy creatures.
Having a bottle of shampoo on hand for all those unexpected messes is a wise decision. If not, you’ll have to run to the store last minute while your Fido is tied outside smelling like the fertilizer from your garden. Your local store may not have the right kind of shampoo for your pet, and you’ll have to buy something else that may irritate your dog’s skin. Chances are you’d probably head to your shower first anyway to try to find something that will make Fido smell better, and we already know human shampoo is a bad choice for dogs.
A bottle of the best dog shampoo will cost you $10-$20 on average. Isn’t it worth $20 to know that you’ll be able to clean your pet with a safe and effective shampoo when you need to? The cost for professional grooming can really add up and you’d be able to save yourself a lot of money  if you bathed your dog yourself sometimes. Instead of taking your pet to the groomer once a month, you could take him every other month and bathe him at home on the off months. That alone would cut your dog grooming expenses in half!
How I chose these best dog shampoos
This was actually quite a bit easier than some of the other Top 10 lists that I’ve created. I was really shocked (more like horrified) at a lot of the pet shampoo products that are on the market. There are so many dog shampoos that are filled with toxins and harmful chemicals. What’s worse is that you can find a laundry list of consumer complaints about most of these products with just a quick internet search.
I’m not naive enough to think that there are products out there with 100 percent perfect reviews from customers. I know that no matter what product I’m researching there is going to be someone that doesn’t like it. That’s the nature of the beast in the review industry.
There were so many pet shampoos that had hundreds of negative reviews. Consumers were saying horrible things like the shampoos dried out their pet’s skin, they gave their dog a rash, and some pet parents even posted pictures of the sores that their dog supposedly developed after using certain products.
I figured out pretty quickly that the options for high quality, safe dog shampoos were not numerous. I began whittling down the list and, after coming up with my top 20, I went to the consumer reviews. I needed to know that these products were not only tested and proven to work by the manufacturer, but pet parents found that they worked well in real life situations too.
My picks for the 10 best dog shampoos needed to appeal to pet parents, professional groomers and veterinarians. I needed to make sure that the products that I am recommending are healthy and safe for pets, while also doing exactly what the manufacturer says that they will do.
How I researched and evaluated each dog shampoo
I performed all my research online. I read information from consumer reviews, manufactures websites, and articles and blogs from experts in the pet grooming industry. I started by finding out what qualities were needed in a dog shampoo. What does a dog need from their shampoo? First and foremost they need it to be safe.
My search for safe and healthy shampoos brought me to a list of all-natural, hypoallergenic and eco-friendly products. But did these shampoos actually work, and were they as safe and healthy for canines as their manufacturers made them out to be? Unfortunately, in some of these cases the answer was no. After all the pet industry research was completed, I had my list narrowed down quite a lot.
That’s when I dove into the consumer reviews. What did pet parents think about these products? Were they effective? Did they have a pleasant fragrance? Were they affordable? I needed to know what every day pet parents thought about these products when they tested them out in the real world. Every dog is different, and I needed to know that the products I chose would work for a wide range of dogs, not just a select few.
My best dog shampoo pick
Earthbath All-Natural Aloe & Oatmeal Shampoo earned my top pick for being a complete success in every way. The first thing that drew me to this product was its all-natural ingredients. When using products for my dogs, I am always very careful to make healthy and natural choices for them. Dogs take what you give them and that’s their only option. It’s up to us to make the best choices possible for them.
I also like that this product is good for the environment. I’m not someone who bikes to work to reduce their carbon footprint or does everything electronically to save paper. I do what I can, when I can to help the environment, but that usually entails buying eco-friendly products and cleaning up after my dogs when they do their business.
Our Labrador puppy is an itchy girl. Since she was very young, she’s had itchy skin. Our vet says it’s dry and that is what causes her to scratch all the time. First of all, scratching constantly can damage a dog’s skin, and second of all, it’s extremely annoying. Our vet has given us s few recommendations for supplements to help with Saddie’s dry skin, but proper grooming is the key to helping her.
A quality shampoo like this one will improve the health of your dog’s skin and coat.
After using this product two times, I could already notice a change in Saddie’s skin, and we noticed an improvement in her coat after the first bath. Her skin is healthier, and her coat has a gorgeous shine. The aloe and oatmeal in this shampoo do help soothe Saddie’s itchy skin as well. We’ve definitely noticed a drastic decrease in her scratching. It’s not completely gone, but it’s been cut down by about 70%.
Saddie’s dry skin was affecting her coat as well. It felt wiry and dry, but after just one bath with Earthbath All-Natural Aloe & Oatmeal Dog Shampoo I could feel a difference. It was definitely smoother, and now that we’ve been using the shampoo for a couple of months her coat is a lot softer. I also really like the scent. It has a very mild almond scent that leaves your dog smelling clean and fresh without the overpowering fragrance that some shampoos leave behind.
Who else likes it?
It would be easier to tell you who doesn’t like it! This product is veterinarian recommended. How do I know that? Because our own vet recommended it to us. There are also tons of product reviews online from pet parents who say that their veterinarian recommended Earthbath All-Natural Aloe & Oatmeal Dog Shampoo as well.
Consumers also highly recommended this dog shampoo. There are over 1,100 reviews on Amazon and it has a 4.6 star rating. You’ll also find reviews on many other websites as well, and if you do a quick search on YouTube you’ll find hundreds of videos of pet owners recommending this dog shampoo.
Below are the top 3 most helpful customer reviews. Read all Amazon reviews here.
Amazon Customer: Very Pleased!_ (September 9, 2011. Read full review.) “I was a bit skeptical to try this on my Australian cattle dog after countless attempts with different shampoos and very little success. I was stuck debating between the Oatmeal & Aloe vs. Tea Tree and Aloe. I decided to go for tea tree, based on her ongoing skin issues. After the first few washings, I started to notice dramatic results with her obsessive scratching, which I feel was either fungal or allergy related, if not a mix of the two…”
Gina Bird: The VERY Best Shampoo for your loved one!!!_ (February 18, 2008. Read full review.) “Earthbath Oatmeal & Aloe Pet Shampoo is the best and most gentle way to bath your loved one. It gives you all the benefits of being all natural, soap free with oatmeal and aloe that Vet's recommend for sensitive skins. Plus, it leaves your loved one fresh, clean and very, very SOFT! Fur feels like it did when my dog was a puppy!…”
lola: great for skin problems_ (October 14, 2007. Read full review.) “I started using this a long time ago on one of our dogs who had oily, but very itchy skin from seasonal allergies. we tried dozens of shampoos that were supposed to help her itchy skin, but none of them did, except for this one. it cleansed all the oil off her skin, but didn't leave it dry, and for the first time in her life wasn't constantly itching her skin!…”
Flaws but not deal breakers
One thing you may find while researching this product is some consumers with concerns about tea tree oil and its effects on dogs. Yes, it is true that 100% tea tree oil is toxic to dogs. However, rest assured that All-Natural Oatmeal & Aloe Shampoo from Earthbath DOES NOT CONTAIN TEA TREE OIL. As you can see from the ingredients that I listed above, there is no tea tree oil used in the making of this best dog shampoo.
The company does use tea tree oil in some of their products, but with the proper research you will see that when properly diluted, tea tree oil is actually very beneficial for dogs. According to the Pet Poison Helpline , products that contain tea tree oil in concentrations less than 1-2% are generally considered non-toxic to dogs if used according to labeled directions.
Many dog products contain tea tree oil. It has been shown to treat bacterial and fungal skin infections, as well as external parasites like mange and fleas. Many products containing tea tree oil are recommended by holistic veterinarians and other pet care specialists. Again, although some Earthbath products do, this shampoo does not contain tea tree oil, so there is no cause for alarm.
The runner-up for best dog shampoo
Excessive shedding is one of the top concerns of pet parents, and proper grooming is the best way to relieve this issue. Brushing your dog is certainly the best way to remove loose hair from his coat, but what about the hair that is stuck down in his undercoat? Using a deshedding shampoo like FURminator deShedding Ultra Premium Shampoo will help bring that loose hair out. Some of it will wash away during bathing and the rest will be easy to brush out when your pet is dry.
This shampoo contains water, mild surfactants, omega 3 and 6 fatty acids from cranberries, safflower and sunflower seed oils, extracts of calendula, papaya leaf, chamomile, malva flower, blueberry, aloe vera and kava vitamin E, vegetable protein extract, hydrolyzed wheat and oat proteins, fragrance, a preservative and salt.
Although not all-natural, this dog shampoo is full of some really great ingredients that will do wonders for a dog’s coat. The deshedding aspect is really nice, but you also need to be sure that the shampoo cleans and conditions the fur that is still on your dog. Some deshedding dog shampoos only focus on getting rid of unwanted hair, but this formula from FURminator with remove loose hair, clean the fur that is left behind and leave your pup’s coat shiny and soft.
Consumers love this product. FURminator is a popular name in the pet industry, especially when you’re talking about unwanted hair. Many consumers will naturally gravitate toward products from popular companies because they assume that the company is reputable and sells high quality products. That’s definitely the case with FURminator. They have an extensive line of pet grooming products and it’s hard to find anything in their product line that consumers don’t like.
If my other picks aren’t available
Itch relief is taken to a new level with Zymox Enzymatic Shampoo. This best dog shampoo utilizes the LP3 Enzyme system to relieve chronic itching. Enzymes are proteins that occur naturally and increase the rate of chemical reactions. They are a natural defense against harmful microbes. These enzymes will not irritate your dog’s raw or sensitive skin. They are safe and non-toxic for people, pets and the environment.
Bacteria cannot develop resistance to enzymes, thus this dog shampoo with enzymes is ideal for dogs with chronic issues.
The patented LP3 Enzyme System combines different enzymes, each with a specific job, which work together to inhibit, split and destroy bacteria, fungi, and some viruses. This shampoo is antibacterial as well as anti-fungal. The greatest thing about enzymes is that they only target invading single-cell organisms – the healthy cells are completely unaffected.
This shampoo does not contain harsh detergents, steroids petroleum bi-products or toxic chemicals. It’s gentle enough for puppies and has a very mild fragrance. This dog shampoo from Zymox even aids in the healing of infections. You’ll find countless reviews from pet parents who have used this shampoo to treat their pet’s skin conditions.
Buddy Wash Lavender & Mint is also one of the best dog shampoo products that made my list. This is a 2-in-1 product that shampoos and conditions your dog’s skin and coat. This is another all-natural product that you’ll know is safe to use on your dog. It’s also made with botanical extracts of lavender and mint (hence the name) to provide a calming effect for pets with grooming anxiety.
Buddy Wash is made by a company called Cloud Star. It Pet owners really raved about the lather that this shampoo offers. They say that it offers a rich, fluffy lather that easily rinses cleanly off your pet. This product is made with ingredients like wheat protein, sage, rosemary and vitamins C and E that won’t irritate or dry out your dog’s skin or cause any additional dermatological issues.
This shampoo does contain tea tree oil, which as I mentioned earlier is completely harmless to your pet when diluted.
This is a coconut based shampoo that utilizes aloe vera gel to soothe your dog’s skin and provide relief from the itching. Natural fragrances from chamomile, mint, lavender and rosemary leave your dog smelling great without any harsh fragrances or harmful perfumes. The wheat protein also acts as a natural deodorizing agent to keep your Fido fresh between baths.
In fact, it has some great healing powers when diluted. It calms itchy skin that is irritated by flea bites, pollen or seasonal allergies. There is also vitamin E in this shampoo, which protects the skin cells from sun damage and pollution.
Another excellent choice for the best dog shampoo is OmegaPet Oatmeal Dog Shampoo. This all-natural shampoo is formulated for dogs and cats. This is another shampoo that is made with oatmeal and aloe to soothe the skin. It has a scent that smells similar to baby wipes, which many consumers enjoyed. It is specially formulated to restore the natural oils in your pet’s skin and smooth his coat.
It is made with oat extract to nurture and restore softness and manageability to your dog’s fur. It also contains shea butter, which infuses the hair with extra moisture and softness. All-natural ingredients mean that it has no harmful irritants, additives or preservatives. OmegaPet products are made in the U.S.A.
The ingredients found in this dog shampoo are water, non-ionic/amphoteric blend, cocamidopropyl betaine, glycerin, lanolin, oat extract, aloe extract, glycol distearate, fragrance and a preservative. Many pet parents that purchased this product say they saw results in their dog’s skin and coat after just one wash.
Odor is just as big of a problem with canines as itchy skin. Some dogs bring it on themselves by rolling in things or getting into places that they aren’t supposed to go. Other dogs just have their own natural funk. If you’ve got a dog that has itchy skin, a shedding problem and a stinky smell, you’re going to need a really good dog shampoo. The best dog shampoo to handle all of these problems is Pro Sense Shed Control Dog Shampoo.
As its names suggests, this is a deshedding shampoo that will help to control excess shedding. It also contains an odor eliminating complex that destroys strong odors on contact and leaves your dog with a refreshing apricot scent. Pro Sense offers pet parents a shampoo that will clean their pet and help reduce shedding, and it won’t irritate their skin either.
Consumers were really happy with this product. A lot of pet parents with dogs that shed excessively, like huskies and Newfoundland’s, commented on the large amount of hair that this shampoo helped to remove. Obviously, with a dog that sheds like a husky you’re never going to be rid of all the excess hair, but this product will help you so you don’t have to brush them as often and you won’t have as much hair around your home or on your furniture.
A pick for fleas and ticks
My final pick is for a problem that we’ve all had, and chances are we’ll be dealing with it again soon enough. Fleas and ticks  are a thorn in the side of pet parents everywhere. They spread diseases and they cause your dog a lot of discomfort. Preventative measures including flea collars, topical treatments and oral flea and tick preventative medications can do wonders at keeping the little pest away, but what do you if your dog still ends up contracting them?
Flea and tick shampoos are the first line of defense for most dog owners when it comes to dealing with these nuisances. Although you’ll still need to treat your home, getting the fleas off your dog is the first step. The best dog shampoo for ridding your Fido of these annoying little vermin is the Wondercide Flea & Tick Natural Shampoo Bar. I know what you’re thinking…”A shampoo bar for a dog?” Yes. Believe it or not, you can actually bathe your dog faster with a bar than you can with traditional shampoo.
You don’t have to waste the time putting the shampoo on your pet; all you have to do is hold the bar and rub it all over your pet’s body. You won’t have to try and spread the shampoo all around. It’s easy when the bar is in your hand and you can rub it anywhere on your pet that needs a little extra lather. Speaking of lather, you’ll be surprised at the rich lather that this bar creates. It’s better than many traditional dog shampoos.
This shampoo bar from Wondercide uses all organic ingredients. It is also 100 percent biodegradable. Neem leaf extract, organic neem oil and aloe vera kill and repel insects. The entire list of ingredients includes coconut oil, palm oil, shea butter, castor oil, neem oil, citronella oil, geranium oil, neem leaf extract, aloe vera, vitamin E and honey. The citronella and geranium oils provide the ultimate protection from fleas and ticks  without the harmful chemicals found in many other preventative products.
The secret ingredient in the Wondercide Flea & Tick Natural Shampoo Bar is the neem oil. It is naturally antibacterial and antifungal. Both of these properties help to address the issues behind itchy skin. It can be used to treat dry skin, itchy skin, skin diseases, sores and insect bites . It’s even been used to treat skin ulcers, eczema and ring worm.
What to look forward to
In today’s economy, everyone is looking for ways to save money. One of the easiest ways to cut your pet care costs is to groom your dog at home. The pet industry is beginning to see more at home groomers, and that means there needs to be more products directed toward that market. We’ve already seen a drastic increase in the number of at home grooming products available in recent years, but I’ve got a good feeling that we’ll see that number continue to rise.
Researchers are doing almost as much research on canines as they are on humans. They are realizing that dogs need specialized products just like we do. Every dog is different, and the same can be said for every dog’s coat. As more research is done about skin conditions in canines and all the different types of canine coats, we’ll definitely see new products hitting store shelves geared toward those dogs’ individual needs.
Wrapping it up
Every dog needs to be bathed at some point. Whether you do your own grooming or your dog has a tendency to get dirty, you should always have a bottle of the best dog shampoo on hand. Remember that shampoos are as unique as your pet. There are many different formulas for different ages, coat types and skin types.
If your dog has any sensitivities, you should be sure to talk to your veterinarian before selecting a shampoo. They will be able to help you select the best dog shampoo for your pet’s individual needs. You may also seek advice from your groomer. Chances are, they probably know your dog’s skin and coat better than your veterinarian.
Parabens, phthalates, and other harsh chemicals may not affect your dog’s skin right away, but they are sure to take a toll over time. Spending a few dollars extra on a high quality shampoo with natural, soothing ingredients is a much better choice. Even if your dog has excellent skin that isn’t sensitive to anything, the chemicals in poor quality pet shampoos can leach into their system over time and cause a lot of serious health issues.
References and further reading on dog shampoo
- Dog or People Shampoo, Does it Really Matter?
- Everything You Ever Wanted To Know About Dry Shampoo
- Bathing Your Dog
- Is Your Dog's Shampoo Paraben Free?
- Parabens and SLS in Dog Shampoo – Are They Harmful?
- 15 Ingredients That Should NOT Be in Your Dog's Shampoo
- Relieving Dog Itching with Medicated Dog Shampoo
- Allergic to your dog?
- Cost Comparison: Professional Dog Grooming vs Grooming At Home
- Pet Poison Helpline
- Flea and Tick Products Ingredients: What You Should Know
- Ticks and Lyme Disease
- Medline: Fleas
- The Skin Microbiome in Healthy and Allergic Dogs
- Benefits of Bathing Your Dog
- Diet and Skin Disease in Dogs and Cats
- Everything You Need to Know About Fish Oil for Dogs
- Using Tea Tree Oil on Your Pets? Handle With Care
- FAQ About Fleas
Photos of Earthbath All-Natural dog shampoo and the video review of best dog shampoo by Samantha Randall. All rights to content are reserved.