You may have heard that your skin is your largest organ and this is true for your furry friends too. Whatever goes on their hair and skin is readily absorbed into their bodies, so you need to be sure you are picking the right dog shampoo. Choosing carefully can help you treat conditions that bother them, prevent parasite infestation, and even make them stay cleaner for longer.

Dogs are often happiest unwashed, but they’re hard to hug when they smell. So, for your sanity (and health), here are some suggestions when Fido occasionally needs to take a bath.

Earthbath All Natural Pet Shampoo – Our Favorite Option

Not only does this shampoo feature nature’s own soothing oatmeal in an all natural recipe, but the packaging is eco-friendly too. For about $17, you get a great shampoo that will work for even the most sensitive of dogs, but still gets the tough dirt out and replenishes their natural oils.

With all natural aloe to replenish the skin and moisturizing conditioners for a silky coat, Earthbath will make your four-legged buddy look and smell their best.

Pros:

  • All natural ingredients for sensitive dogs
  • Eco-friendly packaging that won’t damage the environment

Cons

  • Cost is a bit higher than many brands
  • Biodegradable containers have a shelf life
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Fresh and Clean Scented Shampoo – Best Budget Option

For budget-conscious pet owners, Fresh and Clean offers an option at around $5 a bottle. This shampoo is exactly what it says, fresh and clean and scented, with a long-lasting deodorizing effect that can last for weeks.

Fresh and Clean also takes your pet’s skin and coat seriously, with Aloe for moisturizing, and an anti-static formula for a more manageable coat. At this price point, this is a good value for the occasional bath.

Pros

  • Low price
  • Long lasting scent
  • Aloe for moisture
  • Anti-static

Cons

  • Not an organic formulation
  • Plastic container which must be recycled
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Vet’s Best Hypoallergenic Shampoo: Best for Allergies

With natural skin enhancing ingredients like Aloe and Vitamin E, this tear-free shampoo provides an excellent alternative for animals with skin allergies. Vet’s Best is known to relieve itching and lessen that annoying scratching. It also treats dry, brittle coats for a makeover that will make you proud of your pet again.

With a soap-free lather that won’t wash away flea and tick treatments, it is good value at about $10 a bottle.

Pros

  • Helps soothe dry itchy skin and prevent it
  • Conditions the coat for best appearance

Cons

  • Can be an eye irritant for some pet owners
  • Should not be used on pregnant, or nursing animals, or cats
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Veterinary Formula Solutions Triple Strength Dirty Dog – Best on dirt

Let’s face it, dogs can get nasty, and it’s not just big dogs either. If you’ve owned a dog for long, you’ve probably brought them in at least once wondering what exactly they have rolled in.

With Triple Strength Dirty Dog, you get a great formula with three times the active cleaning ingredient of other shampoos. Its ionized formula also helps to repel dirt, keeping your pet cleaner for longer.

Pros

  • Added cleaning power for really dirty dogs
  • Ionically engineered to keep your dog clean longer

Cons

  • The concentrated formula may not be ideal for sensitive dogs
  • May not be effective on all dog smells, especially those health-related
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Wahl Pet Flea and Tick Shampoo – Best for fleas

The scratching is only the beginning. If you’ve ever had a pet infest your carpet with fleas, you know you need to attack at the first sign of this biting parasite and Wahl offers a solution that goes to the source of the problem and wipes out fleas where they live.

This plant-derived formula, provides up to a week of flea protection, without using harsh chemicals like PEG 80. The formula is specially blended with rosemary, mint and cedar oils for a natural insect repelling power that is great for sensitive skin.

Pros

  • Natural formula that avoids harsh chemicals
  • Great for pets with sensitive skin

Cons

  • Needs to be reapplied weekly
  • More expensive than some brands
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Furminator Deshedding Ultra Premium Dog Shampoo

At $5 a bottle, this shampoo has one of the best price points on the market, but its best feature is how it helps deal with shedding pet hair. A once monthly shampoo, Furminator features fatty acids omega 3 and omega 6 along with calendula and papaya leaf extracts for a formula that goes to the root of the problem and helps your dog’s coat to release when you’re ready to groom them.

Pros

  • Helps reduce and manage shedding
  • Great price point

Cons

  • Must be diluted, confusing for some users
  • Best used with separate conditioner
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How to choose a dog shampoo

With so many pet products in the market, knowing what to look for can help you make the best decisions about grooming products for your pet. Here are a few considerations to keep in mind.

First, consider your pets needs

If your dog has sensitive skin, allergies, or another condition requiring a specialized shampoo, you may be best served to find that product. Different formulas produce varying results and using the one best suited for your dog will have the best chance of getting the desired results.

Read the information carefully

Not all pet shampoos are good for all pets. Most dog shampoos are not recommended for cats. Also take note of any special use instructions, such as dilution, before using. If you order online, taking the time to explore listings for extra information, reviews and the like is a great way to find the best products for grooming your pet.