Keeping dogs well groomed is essential in maintaining their healthiness, happiness and hygiene. At times this might feel like a bit of a chore, but keeping your canine’s coat looking fresh makes for more than just a beautiful dog.Â It allows your dog to be more clean and comfortable, enables dog owners to identify any unwanted creatures or conditions that may otherwise go undetected and it combats those doggy smells.
Choosing the right type of dog shampoo is more difficult than it seems because selected products can be based on many criteria, including skin type, coat length and medical problems. One thing is certain – dog shampoo is always the best option and human shampoo should be avoided at all costs. Not only is our shampoo at a different pH to that of a dog’s skin, but it also uses much harsher ingredients than dog shampoo. Using it runs the risk of causing your dog to ingest chemicals that may be extremely toxic or harmful. But with such a variety of shampoos for dogs, which one will help your dog ditch the dirt? Â
Regular use dog shampoo
This is a very broad category and there are many different types of ‘regular use’ dog shampoo. First, it is important to identify your dog’s skin type; is this particularly oily, dry and flaky or normal? This can be done by looking and feeling your dog’s coat and parting the fur to have a look at the skin.
For those dogs with dry or itchy skin, an oatmeal-containing shampoo is often recommended, as this ingredient relieves some of the symptoms associated with dry skin and allergies and may stop your dog itching so much. Sometimes this type of shampoo contains aloe vera as well which acts as a soothing ingredient. If your dog has problems with dandruff, it is a good idea to look for a rehydrating formula shampoo because these are often specifically targeted for this problem.
Hypoallergenic shampoos are another type on offer, particularly if your dog is sensitive to normal shampoo. Most dog shampoos have a fairly strong scent to eliminate those doggy odours; however, in a few cases, dogs may react badly to this. As a result, hypoallergenic soap is specifically created to be more gentle and free from harsher chemicals that could cause irritation. If washing your dog is a difficult task, it might be worth trying a hypoallergenic shampoo to remove at least one worry of creating discomfort and hopefully make bathing more enjoyable for you and your pet.
For super sleek coats, dog conditioners are also available and sometimes can be found in a 2 in 1 shampoo-conditioner combination. Using a soap that is a dual product can reduce the bathing time required, making it a little easier for owners. The conditioners on the market are often formulated for a specific fur length, so make sure you find one that suits your dog’s coat.
Medicated dog shampoo
If your dog has a particularly troublesome skin condition, for example an allergic reaction or rashes associated with pest infestation, medicated shampoos can sometimes be chosen to combat this. It is worth discussing with your vet first, but medicated shampoos can include antibacterial, antifungal or insecticide ingredients and will tackle a range of conditions from oily skin to itching and flea infestation. Â
Waterless dog shampoo
This type of shampoo comes in a spray bottle or as a powder and doesn’t require water, so it’s the perfect choice if your dog doesn’t enjoy being soaked or just needs a bit of sprucing up between washes. Requiring only a simple brush through, it will keep your companion looking and smelling fresh.
There is evidently a lot of choice when it comes to finding the perfect dog shampoo. It is certainly worth testing out a few in the quest to find the most appropriate one for your dog, but keep in mind that over its lifetime your dog may change its requirements, so be prepared to adapt the shampoo accordingly. However, carefully selecting your shampoo will mean that your dog is kept looking, smelling and feeling clean and happy.