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Best Dog Shampoo & Conditioners Reviews Anti Dandruff & Tearless Dog Shampoo Can I use Human Shampoo on my Dog? Can Humans use Dog Shampoo? Best Dog Shampoo for Smell Hypoallergenic Dog Shampoo for Itchy Skin Dog Shampoos for Sensitive Skin Oatmeal & Aloe Vera Dog Shampoo Dog Shampoo Dangerous Ingredients Best Dog Shampoo for Shedding Dogs Best Dog Shampoo for Odor Control Dry Waterless Shampoo for Dogs Best Dog Shampoo for Mites & Mange Best Dog Shampoo for Flea & Ticks Dog Bath Cosmetics, Sprays & Deodorizers Healthy Homemade Dog Shampoo Recipes Best Antifungal & Anti-Bacterial Dog Shampoo Is Human Dog Shampoo suits Dogs? Dog Shampoo Shopping Tips Valuable Vitamins & Supplements for Dog Hair Anti-Dandruff & Anti-Smell Dog Shampoo Why to Use Dog Shampoo? Best Medicated Dog Shampoo Essential Oils in Organic Dog Shampoo Safe & Effective Oils for your Dog Tips for Bathing Dog with Shampoo Baby Shampoos for Dogs Ringworm Dog Shampoo Dog Hair Conditioners Dog Shampoo Types & Variations Dog Shampoo Brands Natural Dog Shampoo Luxury Dog Shampoo Milk Dog Shampoo Dog Bath & Wash Bubble Dog Bath Dog Soap
WARNING !!! Please, NOTE: Dogica® DOES NOT ADVICE to wash your dog with ANY SHAMPOO, before consulting your veterinary physician!
NOTE #2: All the recipes for informational and educational purposes only! Usually, Homemade DIY recipes do not meet 100% of dogs' needs. They are intended to help owners prepare the occasional remedy for bath, not to serve as the basis of any professional dog's skin and coat care.
NOTE #3: Before using even the "BEST" available on market dog Shampoo, please consult with your groomer of vet.
What is a dog shampoo and how does it work? Dog shampoos are specially designed to cater to the needs of a dog's skin, which is rather different than human. The main difference lies in pH balance, the topmost layer of the skin that protects us from bacteria and viruses. For humans, the pH scale falls under the range of 0-14, with levels less than 6.4 belonging to high acidity, and levels more than 6.4 belonging to high alkalinity.
The normal range of pH levels for humans is 5.2-6.2, deeming them more likely to be on the acidic side, which results in shampoos being formulated in a way that doesn't disrupt this balance. On the other hand, dog's pH scale ranges from 5.5 to 7.5, which means that it tends to be more on an alkaline side. Therefore, dog shampoos are formulated in a way to maintain this balance and secure protection from bacteria and viruses.
Dog shampoos tend to have a milder structure that cleanses the skin and coat gently. These products are made to lather easily and retain moisture of the skin to prevent dryness, dandruff or scales. Additionally, there are shampoos that are specially formulated to target different problems, such as shedding, tangles, odor, flea control or different skin infections.
Why to use it? Any dog owner who wants to provide their loyal companion with maximum care and comfort should invest in a quality dog shampoo. As we all know, dogs are playful beings and can often get quite messy, so they need our help in staying clean and fresh. The right shampoo will do away with dirt and unpleasant smell, and prevent possible skin infections and other health issues.
Frequent bathing can eliminate parasites, bacteria, and other infectious organisms, so it is often necessary for dogs with bacterial and fungal infections, as it can minimize or even prevent the need for antibiotics and other medication. Also, if your dog has allergies, frequent shampooing will likely reduce the itch and make them feel much more comfortable. However, if your dog has particular aversion to water, you can always use a dry shampoo.
Important Features to Consider A dog shampoo should do several things well. Here's what to consider when selecting a dog shampoo for your dog:
Type of skin and coat. Evaluate your dog's skin and coat to determine what type of shampoo would be the best choice. Dogs with sensitive skin and smooth coat need a mild formula with oatmeal, aloe vera or rosewater, for example. If your dog has a furry coat, you might consider using a shampoo with a conditioner to make the coat more manageable. You can also use shampoos designed to reduce excessive shedding, if your pooch has troubles with it. For dogs with dry, itchy skin prone to allergies, hypoallergenic shampoos are a great choice that will soothe and nourish their skin. If your dog has normal skin, you can opt for general purpose shampoos or the ones that provide deep cleansing, if your dog spends a lot of time outside. If you are unsure which product to use, consult the vet.
Odor. Dogs that spend a lot of time outside and have an adventurous spirit may pick up unpleasant smell along the way. Even if your dog spends most of their time on the couch, if you notice a particular "doggy" smell, you may want to consider using a deodorizing shampoo to get rid of bad odor.
Fleas and ticks. There are plenty of shampoos that are designed to repel or kill fleas, ticks, and other parasites. However, if your dog has troubles with them, it is likely that the use of shampoo alone will not be sufficient to solve the problem, so you will need to use them together with appropriate treatments. Your vet can also recommend the appropriate shampoo to be used while your dog is undergoing such treatments.
Age. If you have a puppy, it's a good idea to use shampoos that are specifically designed for them. These products have a mild, tearless formula that won't irritate or inflame their skin, nose, and eyes.
Natural ingredients. When choosing the best shampoo for your dog, it's important to read the label and check the ingredients. Many typical chemical-based shampoos contain artificial colors and fragrances, alcohols, detergents, animal and petroleum by products, and many other chemicals that can cause skin irritation, inflammation, and excessive hair loss. You should always opt for a more natural option.
Natural products use more natural ingredients like oil essences, vitamins, and herbal proteins. However, even these products can feature some chemicals, so it's important to read the labels carefully. You can also opt for using an organic shampoo certified by USDA. These products must be manufactured under strict rules that involve, among others, using ingredients that are raised using natural fertilizers and without the use of insecticides, and that don't contain artificial chemical ingredients, like artificial fragrances and dyes. These products also state that they are safe for frequent use, which makes them a desirable choice for securing your dog's wellbeing.
Can I use Dawn to wash my dog? Dawn dish soap has the ability to remove oil quickly and it may be effective with stains, but it should never be used as a dog shampoo. This detergent contains plenty of harsh chemicals that can strip your dog's skin of natural oils and cause irritation and inflammation. The best and the safest option is to use a dog shampoo, as they are specially formulated to meet the needs of a dog's skin.
Do I need a Conditioner? If you have a nice gentle shampoo, a conditioner is not necessary. Conditioners can help with a dry coat, and are often left in. Conditioners can also be applied in between baths if your dog is getting a little smelly and you don't have time for the full bath. They can help to mask that doggy smell.
Can I use baby shampoo on a dog? Although some vets recommend Johnson and Johnson Baby Shampoo for bathing dogs, it can still be hard to determine whether a specific human product is suitable for animal use. Baby shampoos tend to have a mild formula with natural ingredients, but they are still made to suit human pH levels, and not the ones of dogs. Dog shampoo is specialized for canines and it is always the safest choice.
Can I use a human shampoo on dog? The definite answer is NO. Not just because of different Ph levels on skin, but also because the ingredients could destroy your dog's skin, eyes, ears, etc...
NO! Dogs require the same protection on their coats that our hair needs - debris, bacteria, and dirt will build up over time and can lead to infections, parasites, etc. Ergo, baths are required to ensure that they stay clean, but using human shampoo is completely out of the question here unless you are bathing them in baby shampoo. Other than baby shampoo, human shampoo is one of the worst things you could ever put on your dog. Human shampoos are formulated to have moisturizers for the purpose of replacing the much-needed protective layer that gets scrubbed away. Both dogs and humans have an acid mantle, a barrier that protects against infection, bacteria, and viruses, which goes hand in hand with using human shampoo.
If the acid mantle is scrubbed away on a dog, however, microorganisms are left to run rampant. You will notice that your dog's skin will become itchy, will peel, become highly irritated, and much more. Humans have a regular skin pH balance of around 5.2 up to 6.2, while dogs typically range from 5.5 up to 7.5. The actual pH scale, however, ranges from 0 up to 14. Levels that are below 6.4 are considered to be high acidity, while the levels above 6.4 are considered to be high alkalinity. Human skin, because the pH level sits between 5.2 up to 6.2, are more on the side of being acidic. Ergo, skin products and shampoos are specifically formulated for this very balance. Using a shampoo or general bath product on a dog, who is not human and does not have the same pH balance or general level, can be extremely devastating to their skin and coat.
Human shampoos destroy the acid mantle of a dog through a major disruption, opening the floodgates for all types of viruses and infections. A vicious cycle will begin. Your dog will scratch and itch at their skin, opening abrasions for bacteria to dig into. You will also notice a smell as a result of the bacteria running rampant and try to wash your dog more, worsening the damage. Baby shampoos are formulated and designed for sensitive skin and are made to be a very mild shampoo. They are made without harmful chemicals and fragrances, unlike regular human shampoo, and are designed to leave the skin with everything it needs to have a protective barrier. Using baby shampoo is not recommended on a regular basis, but it's the only safe human shampoo alternative to shampoo is formulated and designed for dogs.
HUMAN SKIN vs DOG SKIN Just like human skin, a dog's skin is his largest organ and it accounts for 12-14% of his body weight. It protects him from his environment, regulates his temperature and gives him his sense of touch. And just like us, anything you put on his skin can be absorbed into his body. He also grooms himself by licking his fur and skin so any product residue remaining on his coat could be ingested directly. What is surprising is that a dog's skin is actually thinner and much more sensitive than that of a human. A dog's fur coat is needed not only to further regulate his temperature, but also to protect his delicate skin underneath from physical and UV light damage.
The pH of a dogs skin also differs from ours. Our skin is slightly acidic and normally around 5.5 whereas a dog's skin is much closer to being neutral - like water. This is why you shouldn't use a human shampoo on your dog because it could be very irritating to his skin and coat. Over time, an acidic human shampoo can strip away the natural oils from the skin and hair leaving dry, irritated skin and a dull coat. Good things to look for include natural skin moisturisers like aloe vera, vitamin E, honey and tea tree oil.
Colloidal oatmeal is good for relieving dry or itchy skin. Essential oils like lavender, eucalyptus and citrus are great for making your dog smell nice and they also act as insect repellents. Herbs including comfrey and calendula can sooth irritation from flea bites or stings, and calendula can help to heal skin abrasions due to its antimicrobial properties. Natural oils like olive, coconut, jojoba and avocado are all great for your dog's skin and will help to make his coat soft and shiny too.
Shampoos are generally classified into two types- spray or standard. Spray shampoos need to be left on the coat and standard shampoos act like human shampoos. Medicated shampoos are also available that treat a variety of diseases and their symptoms. When it comes to pet shampoos, there are as many choices as there are coat types. It is important to choose the right shampoo to match your dog's skin and coat's needs.
Because your dog's skin and hair have different requirements than yours, it only makes sense to use a shampoo designed specifically for his needs. Dog shampoos should indicate if they are formulated for dry, normal or oily skin types. Before you begin, think about why you are washing your dog. Is he smelly, itchy, has fleas or simply dirty from playing outside?
Hypoallergenic Shampoo Hypoallergenic shampoos are good for pets who have allergies or sensitive skin. With sensitive skinned dogs, it is sometimes as much what is not in the product as what is in it. Most hypoallergenic shampoos contain natural ingredients and do not have fragrances or dyes to lessen potential irritation of a dog's skin.
Medicated Shampoo Medicated shampoos are available at most pet supply stores or, depending on the pet's condition, by prescription from a veterinarian. These shampoos are formulated to treat skin irritations as well as cleanse your dog's coat. Dogs suffering from itchy skin infections and other psoriasis-like conditions could benefit from medicated products, which can provide some relief to the symptoms. Always consult your veterinarian before using a medicated shampoo.
Dry Skin Shampoo Dogs with dry itchy skin and dandruff can benefit from shampoos and conditioners that offer extra moisturizer for the skin and coat. Emollients, such as silk, wheat and oat proteins, safflower oil and wheat germ oil can help keep the skin soft and supple. Look for shampoos that also contain ingredients that can help with itching or dry skin problems, such as peppermint oil, eucalyptus and aloe.
Smelly Dog - Anti Odor Shampoo Dogs, just as with people, can have oily skin and hair. This is where the "dog" smell comes from. Your best shampoo option is a deodorizing shampoo. Typically, they contain baking soda or citrus to help remove the dog smell. Be careful of shampoos with added dyes or perfumes, as they can be harsh on the dog's skin and coat.
Waterless Shampoo A waterless shampoo is a unique variety of shampoos. These do not require water for their action on the skin and fur of dogs. You simply apply the shampoo on the dog and make sure it spreads well. In order to spread it, you can work it well with a towel.
Tearless Shampoo Tearless shampoos are a special type of shampoo. They are made in such a way that when they come in contact with the dog's eyes they do not cause a burning sensation. They have a number of special chemicals in them. Some of them may be carcinogenic, so be aware of them. This is very similar to tearless shampoos used for humans. These shampoos are generally prescribed to puppies since they are more sensitive to the burning sensation. Please note that if the tearless dog shampoo gets into a human eye, it will burn.
Ringworm Shampoo Ringworm is a fungus, not an actual worm that dogs can contract by coming into contact with it. It's a superficial infection that can be easily treated with medication as well as special ringworm shampoo for dogs. If your dog is suffering from ringworm or tends to contract the fungus often, having a good shampoo to combat it can help.
General Shampoo For routine bathing, you can consider using an oatmeal or aloe vera-based shampoo, as they are gentle enough for frequent use. To add volume to your pet's coat or soothe dry skin, consider using a shampoo that contains protein. There are also shampoos that are formulated to enhance or darken specific coat colors. Whitening shampoos brighten white coats and there are highlighting shampoos for red or darker coats.
Conditioners Dog conditioner has many benefits, such as detangling and moisturizing dry, itchy skin. Applying conditioner after shampooing can keep your pet smelling fresh longer. Shampoos can strip the oils from the pet's skin and coat, causing more oil to accumulate and the "dog" smell to return quickly. If you are bathing your dog on a weekly or biweekly basis, you should add a cream rinse or conditioner to the routine to prevent his skin from becoming dry and itchy.
The appellation "hypoallergenic" is a misnomer, but alert owners of dogs with sensitive skin can find products that are safer and gentler than regular dog shampoos. The problem is, there is no legal definition of the term "hypoallergenic"! A dog with contact dermatitis from an ingredient or ingredients in his shampoo will likely have an immediate adverse response that's based on where the ingredients came into contact with his skin, the strength of the solution, and how long it was left on his skin.
In contrast, a dog with an allergic reaction may not exhibit signs of trouble the first time he comes in contact with the allergenic substance, however, subsequent exposures may bring about more rapid and widespread reactions. He may exhibit skin irritation all over his body, even when exposed to the problematic allergen in a very small amount or for a very short period.
The phrase "hypoallergenic" was first used in advertising by the cosmetics company Almay in 1953. Almay was founded in 1931 by Alfred and Fanny May Woititz when Alfred, a chemist, began developing skin care products for his wife - cosmetics that wouldn't irritate Fanny May's sensitive skin. Almay was the first company to market the concept of skincare product safety, and set itself apart by producing fragrance-free products, including all product ingredients on product labels, and testing its products for allergy and irritation. After its introduction by Almay, the description "hypoallergenic" quickly became widespread in the cosmetics industry - even if the products they described were not, in actual fact, less allergenic than other products.
In 1974, the FDA attempted to regulate the phrase hypoallergenic as it pertains to cosmetics. It proposed that a product should be permitted to be labeled hypoallergenic only if scientific studies on human subjects showed the product caused a significantly lower rate of adverse skin reactions than ordinary products. What about hypoallergenic dog shampoos? Well, it's even less charted territory.
We have already established that hypoallergenic lacks a legal definition. Dog shampoos that claim to cure, treat, or otherwise mitigate a disease or ailment are regulated by the FDA's Center for Veterinary Medicine. Dog shampoos that claim to kill or control fleas or ticks fall under the regulatory purview of the Environmental Protection Agency. But "regular" dog shampoos, "hypoallergenic" or otherwise, fall under the category of "grooming aids," which are not regulated by any governmental or non-governmental agency in this country.
Despite the lack of a legal or even accurate definition of the phrase "hypoallergenic shampoo," manufacturers that use that phrase are generally trying to identify products that are formulated without ingredients that commonly cause adverse reactions in sensitive dogs. Given the lack of a legal description, we, too, are forced to use the appellation to discuss the type of product we'd recommend for dogs with super-sensitive skin.
For the rest of the article, we are going to grit our teeth and refrain from using quotation marks around the phrase hypoallergenic shampoo, and trust that you understand. Just keep in mind that while these products might reduce the potential for harming a chemically sensitive or allergy-prone dog, there are no guarantees that this will be the case for any specific dog. And there are no regulators - only your own informed diligence, making sure that a product marketed as hypoallergenic has any fewer ingredients or less harmful ingredients than any other ordinary shampoo.
When choosing a shampoo for a sensitive dog, we look for products that cleanse our dog and rinse out easily, with a minimal number of simple ingredients. We'd avoid all unnecessary ingredients, such as perfumes, fragrances, and dyes. If a dog has particularly dry skin, you may wish to sacrifice suds and lather in order to avoid sulfates - including sodium lauryl sulfate, TEA lauryl sulfate, triethanalomine, and alkyl sodium sulfate that can be irritating to dry skin.
Of course, your own dog will have to be the judge, but in general, we are not bothered by "soap" as an ingredient. Many hypoallergenic formulas bragged that they were "soap-free." Soap can be chemical or natural, and it isn't always harsh. If you see "saponified coconut oil" or "saponified olive oil" or something similar, the product contains soap. Saponification is the process by which vegetable oils or animal fats are made into soap.
Preservatives are a double-edged ingredient. The chemicals that most effectively preserve shampoos are most likely to cause adverse reactions in sensitive dogs. Some examples include parabens, which might be listed on the label as propylparaben or butylparaben, these ingredients are also antibacterial. Some shampoos use formaldehyde as a preservative, which might be listed as sodium hydroxymethyl hydroxymethyl glycinate.
Before one understands what a natural dog shampoo is, it is helpful to know that there are various commercial dog shampoos available in the market claiming to be helpful with specific problems. But these are made of strong chemicals that may be effective but could also be harsh and brutal on a dog's skin which is soft and sensitive. Natural shampoos are the shampoos that do not contain any harmful chemicals and if they do, they do so in very minimal quantities.
They are made almost completely of nature-based products and natural ingredients that are very mild on the skin but achieve the purpose for which they are made. A lot of companies offer these natural solutions as opposed to others that are purely commercial and chemical based. These commercial shampoos may get the job done but there may be certain side effects to look forward to.
Dog Shampoo Vs. Natural Dog Shampoo Normal shampoos, in this case, refer to the common dog shampoos available in the market made up of the common chemicals that are helpful in getting the dog clean. But these may also be a little too harsh for their skin. Although, chemically formulated to act gently but firm, there have to be certain repercussions to using strong chemicals on a dog's skin. Natural shampoos, on the other hand, are composed of natural products. They are biodegradable and also a majority of them do not contain any soap. A very common feature of natural shampoos is that a lot of them are based on oatmeal. Thus, one can use the terms natural and oatmeal shampoos interchangeably as these are the same.
Benefits of Natural (Oatmeal) Shampoos The following are some distinct advantages of using natural or oatmeal shampoos as compared to the other normal varieties of shampoos that are available in the market.
Great for itchy skin. Oatmeal is known for its ability to stabilize any erratic skin conditions thus relieving a suffering pet from itches and scratching. With its unique natural composition, it has been identified as a natural skin soother and its soothing effects are due to its ability to balance the skin pH. pH is a very important criterion to be taken into consideration. The slightest variation in it can lead to scratchy skin and redness or inflammation in less severe cases and extremely serious skin conditions in the extreme case. Since dogs are known to have extra sensitive skin, their shampoos should be designed such that there no imbalance in pH and natural shampoos completely eliminate this risk of imbalance by basing themselves on oatmeal formulations.
Good for allergies Other than soothing any itches, oatmeal based natural shampoos are also known to relieve allergies, hot spots, ticks etc.
Helps to keep skin healthy Natural shampoos contain ingredients like tea tree oil and Vitamin E which is healthy for the dog's skin.
One can easily search for "dog shampoos" online and see a host of results but most of these are made up of some of the other chemicals that may or may not be suitable for the dog's skin. The product may be effective but there could be repercussions if some chemical happened to cause more harm than good. This problem is resolved with organic dog shampoos. The term "organic" means related to the organism.
While one may be confused with the terms natural and organic, the confusion is cleared here. While natural products do contain nature's ingredients, they could still have a small amount of the required chemicals and could also be minimally processed. Products that are organic are made from a collection of ingredients which are free of synthetic additives like pesticides, chemical fertilizers, and dyes. In order to be considered organic, products must not be processed using industrial solvents, irradiation, or genetic engineering.
Difference between Normal and Organic Dog Shampoos Common dog shampoos that are found in the market rely on chemically synthesized products to develop their shampoos. They are designed to specifically target some problems and to do so they act strongly. Organic shampoos, on the other hand, place a majority of their ingredients on the natural side. They are unaltered nature's products that are used with the absolutely minimal processing required to get the finished product.
Since their constituents are majorly natural, they rarely cause any harmful side effects that the user should know about. The only singular consideration is whether the dog is allergic to any of the natural ingredients that are present inside. One can clearly see that in the long run, organic products are far more beneficial than its counterparts. The following section briefly elaborates on this.
There are many shampoos available in the market for cleaning the dog's coat and making it shiny and soft. And these work well in resolving these issues. But if the dog is suffering from hot spots, red rashes or inflammation of the skin, then it would be unwise to use such products for its care. These problems call for special attention and special products to take care of the issues. These special products are known as medicated shampoos.
These shampoos are designed to specifically target the problem areas and resolve the disease and affliction that is causing the dog to suffer. These shampoos cannot be used by all dogs and need to be used only when a dog is suffering from that particular problem. So, in a nutshell, Medicated dog shampoo, sometimes called antiseptic dog shampoo, can help your dog feel, smell, and look better without a trip to the vet or groomer. While this type of shampoo is great, finding the perfect one for you and your pup's needs can be difficult.
Just like we need a regular bath to clean our hair, dogs have similar needs. When it comes to washing them, we need to buy special shampoos. Human shampoos do not work on them because they are too harsh for the dog's skin and disrupts the oil and pH balance. It leads to the dry and flaky skin. Dog shampoos are gentler and generally made of organic material. A dog shampoo needs to be chosen according to the dog's skin type. Just like humans, dogs also need a conditioner to improve their hair quality and make it shiny and lustrous in nature. The most common ingredients in these shampoos are oatmeal, aloe vera and tea tree oil.
What is a Tearless Dog Shampoo? Tearless shampoos are a special type of shampoo. They are made in such a way that when they come in contact with the dog's eyes they do not cause a burning sensation. They have a number of special chemicals in them. Some of them may be carcinogenic, so be aware of them. This is very similar to tearless shampoos used for humans. These shampoos are generally prescribed to puppies since they are more sensitive to the burning sensation. Please note that if the tearless dog shampoo gets into a human eye, it will burn.
Benefits of Tearless Dog Shampoo Tearless shampoos have been designed for the benefit of puppies and sensitive dogs. Let us look at the key advantages that a tearless shampoo provides.
It does not irritate the eye
It does not make dogs tear up during their bath
It is ideal for puppies since their eyes are very sensitive
Dogs who are otherwise sensitive also find this shampoo very soothing
Makes bathing a pleasurable experience for dogs, instead of the fear of getting stung by shampoo
Limitations of Tearless Dog Shampoos Tearless shampoos tackle a big problem in dog shampoos - irritating the eye. But they too have a few drawbacks. Some of the compounds used for making the shampoo tearless may cause cancer. Tearless shampoos may use chemicals that some breeds of dogs are allergic to.
Why do Dogs get Dandruff? Your dog is also susceptible to dandruff, just as you are. In scientific terms, dandruff is known as seborrhoea. It is generally caused due to dry skin. If your dog has a dry coat, it will be very clear when he has dandruff. On the other hand, if your dog has a light fur coat, it is hard to determine whether he has dandruff or not. So you should pay close attention to it when you are bathing the dog. Dandruff is not as scary as it seems, it is just a bunch of dry skin that keeps falling off in clumps.
You will find a number of scabs or bumps near the flaky skin. You will also observe that your dog must have started scratching himself more often than usual. The dog's fur may also be getting thinner in places. This is a sign of a severe case of dandruff which you need to treat immediately. Some dogs that are more prone to dandruff are West Highland terriers, fox terriers, Scottish terriers, pugs, schnauzers, dalmations, retrievers, bulldogs, poodles, pit bull terriers, Cairn terriers and Irish setters. Let us look at some cause of dandruff in dogs.
Allergens Dust, pollen, and similar allergens can get on your dog and cause irritation that can lead to dandruff. If you go outdoors with your dog a lot, the accumulation of allergens on their coat is to be expected. Regular grooming and bathing can help prevent this build up.
Chyletiella mites This is also known as "walking dandruff" and are white mites that infest your dog's coat, lay eggs, and cause dandruff. Here, you will not only notice flaky dandruff but will also notice the mites.
Diet An improper diet void of vitamins and nutrients can lead to unhealthy skin and fur. Without healthy vitamins, your dog can suffer from imbalances leading to dry skin and dandruff. Not giving your dog enough water can also lead to poor hydration making their skin and fur breakdown causing dandruff.
Infections Fungal or bacterial infections including yeast infections can cause your dog's skin to dry up and flake off. In this case, you will have to treat the underlying infection as well as dandruff. If you don't address the infection, dandruff will continue despite using proper shampoos and similar treatment options. Letting an infection go untreated can also negatively impact your dog's overall health.
Low humidity The weather can have a direct effect on your dog. Low levels of humidity in the air, especially constant low humidity, can cause your dog's skin to become too dry causing dandruff. When there is a lack of moisture in the air, dogs also tend to get itchy in general. This increase in scratching can cause the skin to flake off more easily. Using a humidifier in your home can add moisture into your home and help alleviate dry skin in your pup. While these are some of the common causes of dandruff in dogs, your dog might not have any of these underlying issues and might just be suffering from the naturally dry skin. If you are unsure about your dog's condition, consult your vet to officially rule out any other issues.
Why do Dogs get Odour Problems? Everyone loves their dogs but no matter how cute they are, it is, in fact, difficult to live with a smelly dog. Therefore, it is important to understand first the source of the odor and then eradicate it effectively. The following are some common causes that throw light on why certain dogs suffer from odor problems.
They might have just rolled around in decaying stuff or something equally smelly. They do this to camouflage themselves and this is a habitual thing.
They might have gotten sprayed by skunks. Both this problems and the previous one can be categorized as external factors and can be solved by a scented bath with a deodorizing shampoo.
The dog could be suffering from a case of bad breath with is a symptom of more serious diseases like diabetes or kidney problems.
There may be some dental infection due to which there can be bleeding in the gums, or a sore mouth or infection in the gums all of which can cause very foul odor.
The dog may be suffering from an ear infection in which case it might constantly be scratching its head. This can be worsened by bathing if the water enters the ears.
Another cause may be flatulence which can be caused due to bad feeding habits. Some flatulence is acceptable but if there is too much odor, then there is some digestive or intestinal problem.
The anal glands or sacs are responsible for secreting an oily and smelly substance whenever the pet is very excited or scared. This may coat the surrounding fur and can lead to a very smelly pet.
The dog may be suffering from skin conditions which cause it to sweat excessively and this can cause bad odor.
Poor grooming and irregular bathing schedules can be the cause of bad odor especially in the case of long-haired pooches.
Certain ingredients that are used in medicated shampoos or the medicines that are administered orally to the dogs may contain elements that are very foul smelling.
How can Shampoos help Dog Odor? The following points focus on how a shampoo can help in removing the odor and making the dog a more pleasant smelling companion. If the unpleasant odor is caused by any contact between the dog and any smelly substance or due to a skunk, the shampooing with a proper shampoo can help a great deal in eliminating the odor and replacing it with a fragrant smell as it will wash away all the dirt and grime. If the use of certain grooming product is causing an unpleasant odor then it can simply be stopped being used. If the dog is suffering from excessive sweating, shampooing can wash away the particles and some shampoos are also designed to regulate the oil and sweat glands. This can help a great deal. The shampoo not only kills and removes the bacterial infections that cause the bad odor but also instead replace the odor with a pleasant smell.
Why are Shampoos Effective in Controlling the Odour? The shampoos for odor control contain certain ingredients that are key to its efficiency. The following points discuss these ingredients. The shampoos that are used for odor control effectively kill the bacterial buildup and also wash away the extra oil secretion in the skin which is mainly responsible for the foul odor. They rinse rather easily and work up a rich lather which helps in effectively cleaning the coat and skin by penetrating deep into the pores and cleaning them. The salicylic acid which is present in certain cleansing shampoos can successfully check the activity of overactive sebaceous glands to control the amount of oil that is secreted.
If excessive oil is secreted and stays in the coat then it can cause the typical "wet dog" smell. The shampoos are further infused with lavender oil, tea tree oil, vanilla extracts and other fragrances which are then transferred onto the dog's coat and skin after shampooing giving it that pleasant and invigorated freshness.
Your dog may be itching for a variety of reasons. The pool of possible culprits goes beyond 500. There are a lot of reasons why your dog might be suffering from itchy skin. They could be dealing with a biological issue, an environmental issue, or a combination of both. It's always best to get to the root of the problem before you begin treating it arbitrarily. If you can, visit a vet or at least a groomer to try and figure out why your dog is scratching so much. Let us look at the common reasons.
Parasites like ear mites or scabies
Allergies from pollen that is transmitted through the air
Bacterial infections of the skin
Lice and Ticks in their fur
Allergies from food products
Fungal and Yeast infections
Allergies due to contact with some materials
Diseases of the liver or immune system
It is essential that you find out why your dog is itching so that you can cure the actual problem and prevent the same problem from turning up again. If you visit your vet, they will most likely evaluate your dog for allergies. Your dog could be developing itchy skin from an allergy to the foods they are eating or from things around your home including detergents you use on your clothes, home cleaning products, or from a shampoo or conditioner you used on them.
Something uncontrollable like the natural humidity of your local climate can even cause your dog to develop itchy skin. Your vet will be able to determine this easily with a thorough evaluation of your pup. Once you find out the cause of your dog's itchy skin, you can figure out the best way to treat it. For example, if you find out that your dog was simply allergic to a harsh shampoo, switching to a hypoallergenic dog shampoo or one made for sensitive skin can help alleviate the problem.
Fungal skin infections are quite common, especially if your dog spends a lot of time outdoors. Things like hot spots, allergies, flea bites, and even breed specific characteristics like floppy ears or skin folds can cause fungal infections. While there are medications that can help clear up these issues, using antifungal dog shampoos can help clear up the infection and get your dog back to their old healthy self. Just like human hair, the hair on dogs also gets dirty and needs to be washed regularly.
Besides fungal infections, dogs can also get bacterial infections as well as a combination of both fungal and bacterial infections. So, if you see something you have to be sure it's fungal before you begin to treat it with an antifungal dog shampoo. If you suspect that your dog has an infection, look for specific symptoms that separate fungal and bacterial infections.
Fungal infections are often found in the ears, on the paws, in skin folds, and in the crease of the legs and armpits. This is because these areas are usually moist and work as a good host for fungal growth. These types of infections tend to be common in dogs with allergies so if your dog suffers from them you can assume that any infection is more likely to be fungal than bacterial.
Similarly, if your dog just finished a round of antibiotics and is presenting signs of an infection, it's likely to be a fungal infection since these often come on the heels of an antibiotics regimen. Finally, fungal infections are more common in warm weather when their bodies are more exposed to water. All that being said, you should always take your dog to a vet to properly diagnose any issues.
By nature, dogs tend to get into everything they shouldn't. While this is endearing it's also the reason they can easily develop skin infections and catch certain diseases from time to time. Depending on what your dog contracted and how it's presenting, there are different treatments including the use of antibacterial dog shampoo. Before learning about the treatment, it's important to understand what causes common infections in dogs. Skin infections are the most common forms of infection your pup can contract. The most common causes for a skin infection are:
Predisposition to allergies
Constant licking and scratching
Floppy ears trapping dirt and moisture
Natural skin folds trapping dirt and moisture
In general, allergies play a large role in bacterial infections due to the itching, licking, and biting that occurs while your pup attempts to soothe themselves. As your dog does those things, they can easily break the skin allowing dirt to settle in and cause an infection. That being said, any dog at any time can contract a skin infection despite none of the above being present.
For example, an infection could be linked to a parasitic infestation, an alien object they ingested, or a ruptured eardrum. For this reason, it's always best to take your dog to a veterinarian if you suspect something is wrong. They will be able to give you a specific diagnosis and treatment plan to help your furry friend feel better.
WHAT IS A RINGWORM? Scientifically known as dermatophytes, ringworm is a collection of fungi. In dogs, it's mainly caused by the fungus Microsporum canis but can also be caused by the Microsporum gypseum fungus or, in smaller amounts, the Trichophyton mentagrophytes. When on your dog, these fungi thrive in the top layer of their skin as well as in their hair follicles and even in their nails. It can cause patchy, crusty areas on the body that can make your dog uncomfortable.
Identifying Ringworm When a dog contracts ringworm, you will notice hair loss along with lesions on the skin that will tend to be in circular patterns that grow larger. While the lesions can be itchy that isn't always the case. They do get inflamed and scab over, though. This, along with the hair loss, is what is typically seen when a dog has ringworm. When a dog contracts ringworm in their nails, they can become brittle and rough. There are some instances where a dog won't show any symptoms. In these cases, your dog can easily spread ringworm to other animals or even to you. This is why any change in your dog's behavior or any noticeable hair loss should be looked into.
What Is Dry Dog Shampoo? Dry dog shampoos, also known as waterless shampoo for dogs - are quick and easy to use products that absorb particles like dirt and grease from the fur. Much like dry shampoo for humans, waterless shampoos require, you guessed it: no water, and so you can just spritz it on through the day rather than getting into the bath or shower. While they won't be that effective against a really muddy or dirty dog, there are a great solution for freshening up your pup, detangling their hair and deodorizing them. Dry dog shampoo usually comes as a powder, spray or mousse.
All you need to do is simply massage the product into your dog's coat and skin, leave it to work its magic for a short time and then finally brushing it out of the fur. No rinsing in the bath necessary! There are a surprising number of benefits of dry dog shampoo other than the fact that it's simply more convenient to use than normal shampoo. Unlike traditional baths, dry dog shampoos don't strip the coat of the natural oils which protect and condition the skin and coat.
This means that they keep your dog's skin and hair moisturized and healthy. They smell great and no water means no disagreeable wet dog smell! Great for dogs that get anxious around bath time. Much quicker to apply than normal shampoo. Remember though: dry shampoo for dogs should never totally replace bath times.
Using a waterless dog shampoo is an option that allows you to take care of grooming touch-ups in between major cleanings without a lot of fuss. A waterless shampoo is a unique variety of shampoos. These do not require water for their action on the skin and fur of dogs. You simply apply the shampoo on the dog and make sure it spreads well. In order to spread it, you can work it well with a towel. After a while, you can brush it off so that the chemicals don't remain in.
These are generally used for those dogs who are scared off or do not like water. It is a convenient solution for such dogs and dog owners. These shampoos can also be used on other dogs as a replacement for the normal shampoo. For example, if you do not want to go through the tedious process of bathing the dog or you have to bathe the dog often because it keeps getting dirty, you can spray on some waterless shampoo. As is the case in traditional shampoos, in waterless shampoos too, the organic and natural ones are most well-received from the side of both the dog and the owner. These ones tend to cause minimal damage and are gentler.
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Essential Oil Safety for Pets While essential oils are generally completely natural, it's important to take proper precautions when applying them to your furry companion. Each dog is different, but there are general guidelines to follow. A good way to test if your pup will respond well to your solution is to first spray their bed. If all goes well, applying to their coat should not be a problem. Above all, consult with a veterinarian if there are any issues with essential oils and your pet. We've compiled a safety checklist below to help keep your doggo safe and smelling good:
Apply to the coat - not directly to skin, nose, mouth or eyes.
Dilute the solution appropriately - 6 drops of your essential oil in a 4 fl. oz. spray bottle works well.
Mix the solution appropriately.
Test with small amounts on your pup first.
Take extra precautions with puppies, older dogs and dogs with liver disease. If needed, try increasing the amount of water to dilute the strength of the essential oils.
Best Essential Oils for Pets As with humans, the benefits of essential oils are different for dogs depending on what plant the oil was extracted from. Some provide calming effects, others can help counteract anxiety during storms and others can even deter fleas and ticks. While your pet's personal preference should be the priority when making an essential oil fragrance, why not counteract sleeplessness for or deter fleas at the same time? It may take some experimentation and a few batches, but finding the perfect mixture for your dog is a fun and rewarding experience. Not only will they smell good, but studies show that essential oils have healthy side effects for furry friends. Here are some of the best essential oils for your pup:
Lavender: Arguably the most popular for pet perfumes, lavender oil is gentle and soothing. It is thought to provide calming effects, ward off insects and smells lovely.
Peppermint: Another go-to for pet essential oil recipes, peppermint has been known to ease joint and muscle pain as well as give off a classic, fresh scent.
Chamomile: This essential oil has been known to help pets relax. The daisy-like plant extract is thought to relieve muscle pain and inflammation as well.
Eucalyptus: This plant's extract has been known to help open airways and clear congestion, equating to a calming effect for the user or pet - apply to coat, for a mild release.
Helichrysum: These plants are from the sunflower family and can produce anti-inflammatory effects for the skin.
Niaouli: Coming from the paperbark tree, Niaouli essential oil can ease inflammation and has a tropical scent.
Anyone with a dog knows that they make the best snuggle buddies - so why not help them smell their best when they cuddle up to you at night? You wouldn't want your significant other (or yourself) to have a funk, so don't let your dog either! Have fun creating your dog's new favorite scent and don't be afraid to experiment with different oils to find the best mixture for them. Bonus points for having a fragrance of your own that pairs well with theirs!
Dog conditioners are special formulations that are used for dogs. Using human products on dogs can lead to skin allergies and irritations, so there is a need for special dog products. These formulations work on the fur of the dog in various ways. It can smoothen the fur and/or make it shine. It can also add volume to the dog's fur so that the coat looks more wholesome. Some conditioners even relieve itchiness and soothe the skin. Conditioners also help to remove tangles and mats in the dog's fur so that you can comb through easily. Unlike in the choice of shampoo, when choosing a conditioner, your dog's skin type does not matter much since conditioners do not affect the oil balance of the skin.
You generally have two choose between two types of conditioners: spray or bottles conditioner.
Spray conditioners These conditioners are used immediately after your dog has a bath, while the coat is still damp. You do not have to wash out these conditioners. Just spray it onto the fur and comb through to remove tangles and knots. These conditioners often use the help of alcohol, to make a spray formulation, which may cause allergies on your dog's skin.
Bottled conditioners These conditioners are like standard human conditioners. Like human conditioners, they need to be applied after shampooing and should be rinsed out. It moisturizes the fur and removes tangles. Since these are leave-in conditioners, you need to ensure that these also do not have compounds that react with the dog's fur and skin. This approach simplifies the choice between conditioners in the market since there are numerous brands in the market. You can also match your conditioner to the shampoo that you use, the same approach that we use for human shampoos and conditioners. Sometimes shampoos are mixed with conditioners, forming a conditioning shampoo, which does the work of two products and saves you money.
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The best pet you can have is one that is happy, healthy, and of course - clean! Many dog owners know that we are not supposed to use human shampoos for our dogs because of our different pH balance levels, obvious differences such as fur and the insects that like to live in them.
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Homemade dog shampoo can be just as effective as a store-bought shampoo. Not only will you find yourself saving money, you can also control what goes into it. Whether you prefer natural products for your dog, are a regular DIY'er, or just want to save some money, making your own dog shampoo is one way to accomplish all three. Some basic ingredients commonly used in homemade dog shampoo are castile soap, lavender essential oil (to help combat fleas), coconut oil (to moisturize), distilled white vinegar (to remove smells) and rosemary (to moisturize).
Essential oils are used in many homemade dog shampoos, but be careful! You should avoid pennyroyal and tea tree oils, as they can be harmful to dogs. The ingredients may already be in your pantry, and if not, they are easy to find in stores. They are as basic as baking soda, vinegar, and ordinary dish soap. The ingredients for homemade dog shampoo are easy to acquire, most being ready-at-hand in the home, and most recipes are for single use, meaning there's no need for storage containers. You can try a new one each time you wash your dog. Exactly how to give a dog a bath is a different matter.
BASIC HOMEMADE DOG SHAMPOO RECIPES
3-Ingredient Simple Shampoo Dish detergent is formulated to cut through grease and will do a great job of washing away oils that accumulate on your dog's coat and skin. White vinegar has antibacterial and deodorant properties and will leave his coat shiny and clean. Just be careful not to get any in his eyes.
Ingredients: 2 cups of warm water 1/4 cup of dish soap 1/2 cup of white vinegar
Combine all ingredients in a spray bottle and shake to mix. Then wet your dog's coat with warm water and spray with shampoo, avoiding his eyes. Work the shampoo into his coat, creating a thick lather. Rinse thoroughly and repeatedly, even if you think all signs of shampoo are gone. Then dry him off, and he is good to go!
Homemade Dog Shampoos for DRY SKIN If your dog has itchy, dry, or sensitive skin, there are a few things you can add to the shampoo to relieve his symptoms. You can make a shampoo that has glycerin, which can be found in pharmacies, some grocery stores, and online and aloe vera gel. Or you can make an oatmeal shampoo. Oatmeal is known for its soothing properties and is found in many commercial grooming products.
Aloe Vera and Glycerin Shampoo Ingredients: 1 quart of water 1 cup of baby shampoo or nontoxic dish soap 1 cup of white or apple cider vinegar 1/3 cup of glycerin 2 tablespoons of aloe vera gel
Mix all ingredients in spray bottle and shake to thoroughly combine. Apply to your dog, avoiding his eyes and work into his coat. Rinse.
Oatmeal Dog Shampoo for Dry Skin Ingredients: 1 cup of uncooked oatmeal 1/2 cup of baking soda 1 quart of warm water Grind the oatmeal in a coffee grinder or food processor until it's the consistency of flour. Pour into a large bowl and mix in baking soda. Add warm water and stir until incorporated. Wet your dog with warm water and then lather him up with your homemade shampoo. Work into his coat and allow it to sit for a few minutes, if he will let you. Then rinse thoroughly and dry.
Homemade Shampoo to REPEL and KILL FLEAS You can even use homemade dog shampoo to fight fleas. The trick is to add lavender essential oil, which is thought to be a natural antiparasitic and antibacterial. Some DIY'ers combine several oils, including peppermint, eucalyptus, rosemary, and lavender, but if you have to choose just one, lavender will do. It's important to note that not all essential oils are acceptable. Some dogs have severe toxicity and immune-mediated reactions after exposure to some essential oils. Never apply 100 percent essential oils from aromatherapy products on your pet, especially on broken skin. Also, make sure your dog doesn't ingest essential oils. If you have questions, always contact your veterinarian.
Flea-Repellent Dog Shampoo with Essential Oils Ingredients:10 ounces of warm water 2 ounces of aloe vera gel 1 tablespoon of Castile soap 2 drops of lavender essential oil
Note: you may also add 2 drops each of rosemary, peppermint, and eucalyptus essential oils. Combine all ingredients in a clean spray bottle and shake to combine thoroughly. Wet your dog with warm water, spray on shampoo and work into his coat, especially in harder to reach places, making sure not to get any in his eyes. Rinse thoroughly.
There are hundreds of homemade dog shampoo recipes out there, most using some combination of vinegar, which deodorizes and adds shine. Castile soap, or dish soap, which helps the ingredients bind together; and baking soda to balance the acidity of vinegar and water, which is pH neutral. Essentials oils are a nice, organic touch, as well. So next time you and your dog are preparing to bond over bath time, start in the kitchen and mix up some easy, safe, and inexpensive dog shampoo of your own!
What to Watch Out for When Making Your Own Shampoo for Dogs Skin pH is a tricky thing. Certain dogs are naturally more acidic than others, and we are not talking about personalities. Each dog will have their own skin pH level, and each homemade soap ingredient will also have its own pH level. A healthy human pH range for skin is 4.5 to 6.5. For dogs, a healthy range is between 6 and 8.5. Any soap too low in pH levels can cause skin irritation. When making your own shampoo for dogs, shoot for ingredients with pH levels around the 7 mark. Many soaps and soap bases will have pH levels listed on the label. If not, check the product's website, or get in touch with the company to find out.
When combining these common ingredients to make dog shampoo, be sure you are balancing alkaline substances (like baking soda) with acidic substances (like vinegar) in a neutral base (like water) to keep your shampoos pH balanced for your dog's skin. Too alkaline should not be a problem, but too acidic will irritate, and can even harm, your dog's skin.
Just because they are man's best friend doesn't mean they don't get stinky - yes, we are talking about Fido. Whether they are lounging on the couch or cuddling with you, dogs can give off a scent that is unpleasant. Luckily, there is a fix. You can go to the store to buy pre-made scent neutralizers, but it's hard to gauge what ingredients are in these and the price point is often hard to get around.
Sure, there are air fresheners, but that doesn't stop the smell at places other than your home. Luckily, there's a natural option that is great for on the go: DIY dog perfume. With natural ingredients and easy preparation, we have come up with the perfect recipe to make a batch of your own doggy perfume that's easy to spray on your pooch whenever you like. In order to make your own batch of dog perfume you will need:
1 4 fl. oz. spritzer bottle Water 1 essential oil
Step 1: Add Water Into Your Bottle To begin, pour water into a 4 fl. oz spritzer bottle until almost full. Make sure that the water is warm, as this aids with the solubility of the solution. In general, you will want six drops of essential oil for this amount of water. This will provide enough liquid for multiple sprays and dilute the essential oil enough so that it's pleasant and not overbearing.
Step 2: Add Five Drops of Essential Oil to the Bottle Once you have almost completely filled the spritzer bottle, mix in the essential oil of your choice. Swirl the bottle around to mix in the oil completely. The solution should be thoroughly mixed and have no visual reminisce of the oil when complete. Shaking the bottle too vigorously, though, will break down the chemical bonds of the essential oil - so don't go overboard!
Step 3: Screw On the Cap, Mix and Spray Once the water and the essential oils have been added, you are ready to go! When spraying your pup, make sure to avoid sensitive areas like the eyes, nose and mouth as this can cause discomfort. Before each use, make sure to shake the bottle gently. This ensures the ratio between both ingredients stays the same spray after spray.
Step 4: Store in a Dry Place When Not in Use To avoid evaporation and dilution, doggy perfume should be kept in a dry, cool place. Your dog's fragrance will last longer this way. It's safe to throw it in your bag for a walk or trip to the dog park - just remember to store it appropriately when you get back home.
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Even dogs who feel that a bath is cruel and unusual punishment have to get one once in a while. While some dogs with short coats can get away with just water, most dogs need shampoo. Why do dogs need their own kind of shampoo? Manufacturers say their products are gentle enough to prevent the natural oils in a dog’s coat from being stripped, but strong enough to get out the dirt. Many shampoos have been developed to treat a variety of skin conditions in dogs. Understanding the function of the various ingredients may appear daunting. The following table should help you understand why certain ingredients are included in a shampoo. This information can help you, with consultation from your veterinarian, select the right one for your dog's skin condition.
Your dog's skin is her largest organ and anything you use on her skin and coat can be absorbed into the body. So you want to avoid bathing your dog with anything that might be toxic.
Good Or Bad Ingredients The labels are full of tricky definitions making it really hard to know what to look for. The same ingredient can be classified as a mild skin irritant or one that's known to cause cancer, depending on the manufacturing process. If we could inspect the facility and the manufacturer's books to see if they spend the extra time and money to remove the contaminants that are present after synthesis and then see how they dispose of the contaminants, we could more easily classify ingredients as "good" or "bad."
Complicating things further is the fact that many manufacturers buy the source ingredients and then mix them to develop their product. So, the manufacturer of your dog's shampoo likely isn't purchasing coconut oil and synthesizing it to develop sodium lauryl sulfate. They are purchasing the sodium lauryl sulfate and mixing it with other chemicals they purchased to develop their final formulation. Where they purchased that sodium lauryl sulfate and how it was synthesized may not be on their due diligence radar. If the manufacturer of your dog's shampoo didn't do their research and pay the additional money for sodium lauryl sulfate that was cleaned of contaminants, they may be introducing dangerous byproducts into your dog's shampoo.
These ingredients can be a litmus test for determining whether a product is natural, safe and non-toxic. If the shampoo contains ANY of these ingredients you should NOT use the product on your dog.
Proprietary blend of coat and skin conditioners and moisturizers. That isn't an ingredient! You are right. But it IS frequently listed on dog shampoo labels. If you see this statement do NOT purchase this product. This is what manufacturers say when they don't want you to know what's in the bottle.
Artificial fragrance can come from hundreds to thousands of separate ingredients - none of which have to be listed on the label. Some synthetic fragrances have been linked to cancer as well as reproductive and developmental toxicity.
Pthalates are likely not listed on the label. If you see "fragrance," it's very likely that pthalates are present. They are used to bond the fragrance to the other ingredients. Pthalates are hormone disruptors - think endocrine system issues.
Artificial colors are synthesized from petroleum and are linked to organ damage, cancer, birth defects, and allergic reactions. Artificial colors aren't "pure" chemicals. Many of them are contaminated with byproducts and are purchased by the manufacturer to visually enhance the product.
Formaldehyde preservatives You won't see "formaldehyde" on the list of ingredients, but it's still around. When formaldehyde got a bunch of bad press, it was reformulated into a "slow releasing" compound that releases small amounts of formaldehyde over time. While it may release less formaldehyde than its precursor, it's still formaldehyde, which has been known to trigger an immune response that can include burning, itching, blistering, or scaling of skin. The jury is still out on whether these chemicals are linked to cancer as they haven't been thoroughly tested. If you see any of these names on the bottle, avoid the product: Bromopol, Doazolidinyl urea, DMDM Hydantoin (often mis-typed on dog shampoo bottles as DHDH hydantoin), Imidazolidinyl urea, Quaternium.
Isothiazolinone preservatives Methylisothiazolinone and Methylchloroisothiazolinone are both known skin irritants that have been associated with significant allergic reactions. There's strong evidence that methylisothiazolinone is also a neurotoxin.
Paraben preservatives are thought to be "stored" in the body and have a cumulative effect posing health risks such as estrogen disruption, cancer, and reproductive issues. They may be listed on the bottle as butylparaben, methylparaben, or propylparaben.
Cocamide-MEA is a surfactant that is restricted for use in cosmetics as it has high contamination concerns from nitrosamines. Nitrosamines are contaminants that can form under certain conditions - such as high temperature or acidic pH. They are a class of chemicals that are thought to be carcinogenic, have reproductive toxicity, developmental toxicity, and organ system toxicity. Nitrosamines can also contaminate waste water. If you begin to think that the nitrosamine warning is alarmist, think again. One of the top selling "natural" dog shampoos on the market has Cocamide-MEA listed as an ingredient.
Triethanolamine is very closely related to Cocamide-MEA and may be listed as Cocamide-TEA. It's used as a surfactant and pH adjuster. Like Cocamide-MEA, it's at high risk of being contaminated with nitrosamines.
Mineral oil in dog shampoo helps the skin retain its own moisture by providing a protective barrier over it. Sounds great, right? It also keeps the skin from releasing its own natural oils and eliminating toxins and that's not so great. It's a liquid mixture of hydrocarbons from crude oil. It's a possible toxin and allergy inducer. There are a lot of articles on the internet advising pet parents to put a drop of mineral oil in their dogs' eyes before a bath, saying the mineral oil will protect the eyes from stinging if you get detergent or soap in them. Don't do this! Only pharmaceutical grade mineral oil has been cleaned of contaminants like complex hydrocarbons and benzene. Other grades of mineral oil are not completely free of contaminants.
SD Alcohol 40 (Isopropyl) in a grooming product it is drying to both the skin and hair oils. SD-40 also enhances skin absorption - meaning it is easier for the other toxic ingredients to enter through the skin when SD-40 is present. Many ear cleaning products are primarily SD-40.
Polyethylene glycol (PEG) is a humectant - used to help the skin retain moisture. While it is a known skin irritant, the scarier side of PEG is that it is a "penetration enhancer" - meaning it's a carrier for other chemicals, helping them cross through the skin and into the bloodstream. It gets worse, it may also be contaminated with dioxane and ethylene oxide!
PEG-40 Lanolin is a polyethylene glycol derivative of lanolin. There is limited evidence of it causing organ toxicity. The bigger concern is that it may be contaminated with dioxane and ethylene oxide.
Propylene glycol is a skin conditioner, solvent, and humectant. Like polyethylene glycol, it's a penetration enhancer. It's also a suspected immune system toxin, neurotoxin, reproductive toxin and skin toxin.
Sodium benzoate preservative When sodium benzoate and citric acid or ascorbic acid (vitamin C) are mixed together they may become benzene - a cancer-causing chemical associated with leukemia and other blood disorders. If not mixed with citric or ascorbic acid, sodium benzoate is considered safe.
Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) is a surfactant, detergent, and emulsifier used in a LOT of products. In its powder form, SLS is a known skin irritant and may be inhaled causing organ system toxicity. SLS may be contaminated with toxic solvents from the manufacturing process. It's readily absorbed into the eyes where it's been shown to cause eye irritation and damage eye proteins. Even at very low concentrations SLS has been shown to remain in a person's system (brain, heart, and liver) for 4 to 5 days. Combine that with the fact that SLS is a known penetration enhancer and there's a possibility of exposing the eyes to some damaging chemicals. If that didn't steer you away from SLS, the final blow is the manufacturing process, called ethoxylation, is a highly polluting environmental toxin.
Sodium Laureth Sulfate is used as a cleaning agent (surfactant) with a high risk for contamination with 1,4-dioxane (dioxane), a known carcinogen, and ethylene oxide, also a known carcinogen, developmental toxin, immunotoxin, and allergen. The sulfates are derived from coconut oil and as a result manufacturers market them as "all natural plant based & vegan" ingredients.
Ammonium Laureth Sulfate is a surfactant known to cause skin irritation and may be contaminated with dioxane and ethylene oxide. Is the foamy texture it produces worth the risk?
Polysorbates are a fragrance component, a surfactant, an emulsifying and stabilizing agent. This ingredient starts out as sorbitol - a harmless sugar alcohol usually derived from corn syrup. It's then treated with ethylene oxide. Depending on how much ethylene oxide was used, the polysorbate has a number behind its name. For example, Polysorbate 20 is treated with 20 parts ethylene oxide. If the ethylene oxide isn't completely cleaned out of the final ingredient, it's contaminated with a known carcinogen.
Cocamidopropyl betaine is a synthetic surfactant associated with skin irritation and allergic reactions. It's used to make the product thick and foamy. Like the sulfates, cocamidopropyl betaine is derived from coconut oil. During processing, it's mixed with the chemicals amidoamine and 3-dimethylaminopropylamine, which can remain in the final product. These contaminants can form nitrosamines under certain conditions.
Certified Organic Is Safest You put a high level of trust in the manufacturer of your dog's grooming products yet there are no regulations that hold manufacturers to standards for ingredient purity, verification of "natural" claims or disclosure of manufacturing processes. Certified organic dog grooming products go through a much higher level of scrutiny. All ingredients are reviewed throughout their lifecycle - from where and how they are grown, harvested, processed, transported, packaged, and shipped. Certified organic dog grooming products also verify that there are no GMO ingredients, no pesticides, herbicides, artificial colors, or artificial fragrance.
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