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The Best Dog Shampoo

🕚 Updated November 2022

Dogs get dirty; it's in their DNA. That's why there's dog shampoo. Here are some dog shampoos that can help restore shine and a fresh smell to your pup's coat.

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  Best for Fleas & Ticks Best for Puppies Best For Dry Skin Best for Odor Control Best for Shedding Best Detangler
Flea & Tick Shampoo
Burt's Bees
Puppies 2-in-1 Shampoo and Conditioner
Oliver's Choice
Pet Shampoo for Dogs and Puppies
Arm & Hammer
Super Deodorizing Shampoo for Dogs
Cat & Dog Shampoo & Conditioner
4-in-1 Calming Pet Shampoo
Our SummaryA gentle and cleansing shampoo for dogs that breaks the flea life cycle.A two-in-one shampoo and conditioner that's gentle and safe for puppies.A dog shampoo designed to deodorize and soothe itchy skin.A kiwi blossom scented dog shampoo that will re-balance your dog’s pH level.This botanical shampoo works magic to reduce shedding and keep your dog’s skin and hair healthy.A four-in-one lavender and chamomile-scented, longer-lasting dog shampoo.
Pros✓ Contains Precor which kills fleas and flea eggs, ticks, and lice
✓ Coconut-scented
✓ Cleans and soothes sensitive skin
✓ Strengthens coat with added protein
✓ Well-known brand
✓ Natural buttermilk, linseed oil, and oat flour
✓ Free of sulfates and harsh chemicals
✓ Deodorize and relieves itchy skin
✓ Pleasant oatmeal, aloe, and shea butter scent
✓ Lanolin hydrates skin
✓ Great for dogs of all ages and coats
✓ Well-known household brand name
✓ Odor-eliminating power baking soda power
✓ Fresh kiwi blossom scent
✓ Reduces shedding
✓ Removes dead skin cells, conditions, and cleans
✓ Cleans, conditions, detangles, and moisturizes
✓ Calming lavender-chamomile scent
✓ Paraben and alcohol-free formula
✓ Concentrated and long-lasting
Cons✗ Does not cure flea problem✗ Doesn’t produce much suds✗ Scent may be strong✗ You may or may not like the scent✗ Tropical scent wears off too quickly✗ Not great for people or dogs who are sensitive to scented products
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The Best Dog Shampoo

A dog taking a shower with soap and water.

If you take your dog to the groomer regularly, that’s great! Still, if your dog’s paws have been through mud or any area of their body gets dirty, having dog shampoo on hand can prove helpful. We’ve gathered different types of shampoo that clean, nourish, and hydrate your canine’s coat and address any sensitivities or issues they might have.

Buying Guide for the Best Dog Shampoo

A dog closes its eyes while being shampooed.

Why buy dog shampoo?

For one thing, you can’t use your shampoo to wash your dog. We have different skin and hair needs. Dog shampoo is particularly gentle for keeping natural oils in while removing dirt. Unlike us, dogs need regular bathing with shampoo to remove dead skin, hair, dirt, and allergens. Regular shampooing reduces shedding, too.

What should you look for in dog shampoo?

  • Type: Like human shampoo, specific dog shampoo formulas address particular hair types or concerns. Consider if your dog needs a simple cleansing shampoo or a pest-killing or odor-squashing kind. 
  • Scent: Determine if you or your dog prefer a scented or unscented shampoo. Some shampoos contain deodorizing assets to create a long-lasting fresh scent, while others offer an unscented bathing experience.
  • Ingredients: Check for formulas with natural ingredients like aloe, oatmeal, and other plant-based products. Even pest-killing shampoos can be safe. If you’re in the habit of checking the components of the body and skin products you buy for yourself, you know what to do. 

How can you make bathing more tolerable for you and your dog?

Remember that bath time is an opportunity to give your dog much-needed attention. To make it a positive experience, set aside a good chunk of time so you don’t feel rushed. Take your puppy on a walk or play with them just beforehand to release energy. Be prepared to get wet. Even if you have a well-trained dog with a calm personality, bath water will escape the tub, so be prepared with towels to clean up. Also note that handheld shower heads are super convenient for rinsing your pup’s fur.

Check the water temperature first; it should be warm, not hot. Then start lathering up! Shampoo your dog’s hair, and massage their body, all while keeping shampoo away from their eyes, ears, and mouth. Rinse with warm water, then grab some towels and pat them until they’re dry enough. One more thing—buy the best dog shampoo for your pup.

Our Picks for the Best Dog Shampoo

Best for Fleas & Ticks

Pros: Adams Plus shampoo has the same pest-killing power as its original formula, plus the ingredient Precor, an Insect Growth Regulator (IGR). This added ingredient kills fleas when they first bite and keeps them away for up to four weeks. It banishes flea eggs, too, as well as ticks and lice that can become embedded in your dog’s fur. This coconut-scented shampoo also cleans and soothes your dog’s sensitive skin and strengthens their coat with added protein.

Cons: If your dog is regularly exposed to environments infested with fleas and ticks, you may never see an end to the problem.

Bottom Line: This shampoo smells pleasant, which is good for you and your pet. It’s effective and safe, according to the EPA. If you have any concerns that IGRs may be toxic to fleas, animals, and humans, check out the most recent EPA-approved information.


Best for Puppies

Burt's Bees for Puppies 2-in-1 Shampoo and Conditioner

A two-in-one shampoo and conditioner that's gentle and safe for puppies.

Pros: You may already love the Burt’s Bees brand for its all-natural human body and hair care products. They smell divine! This Burt’s Bees pet shampoo and conditioner shares some of the same human-friendly ingredients like buttermilk, linseed oil, and oat flour. It’s packed with safe and soothing stuff and is free of sulfates and harsh chemicals, so it’s a great choice for puppies.

Cons: This dog shampoo is not formulated to remove pests.

Bottom Line: Made by a brand name known for its natural ingredients, this tearless two-in-one shampoo and conditioner promises to treat puppies’ skin and growing coat with tenderness. We also like this product for its efficiency—no need to buy two products to clean and hydrated puppy skin and hair.


Best for Dry Skin

Oliver's Choice Pet Shampoo for Dogs and Puppies

A dog shampoo designed to deodorize and soothe itchy skin.

Pros: The Oliver’s Choice pet shampoo is designed to deodorize and relieve itchy and irritated skin and leave your dog smelling good like its main ingredients—oatmeal, aloe, and shea butter. Lanolin, a conditioning substance derived from sheep’s wool, gives this shampoo a hydrating quality that works on dogs of all ages and coats. The clinically designed formula is biodegradable, paraben-free, cruelty-free, and naturally derived. Your dog will be left feeling and looking incredible.

Cons: The scent may be too powerful for some.

Bottom Line: Oliver’s Choice prides itself on its cruelty-free, paraben-free, and environmentally friendly products. With such high standards, you can bet they cross over to a powerful and gentle shampooing experience.


Best for Odor Control

Arm & Hammer Super Deodorizing Shampoo for Dogs

A kiwi blossom scented dog shampoo that rebalances your dog's pH level.

Pros: For those long-haired dogs and their families, meet the great TropiClean shampoo and conditioner that reduces shedding! It’s not often you come across a two-in-one that removes dead skin cells and conditions while also cleansing the hair. The short ingredient list is about half as long as most natural dog shampoos. The delightful-sounding botanical blend contains plant-based ingredients only, like chamomile and pomegranate extracts. 

Cons: You may discover that the pleasant tropical scent wears off too quickly.

Bottom Line: Bathe your pets with this shampoo, and you’ll notice how carefree yet dignified they carry themselves afterward. How can that be? Well, they’ll know they smell better when they see the smile on your face. 


Best Detangler

Wahl 4-in-1 Calming Pet Shampoo

A four-in-one lavender-scented, longer-lasting dog shampoo.

Pros: This is the only pet shampoo we’ve encountered that serves more than three functions. This Wahl product cleans, conditions, detangles, and moisturizes your dog’s skin and hair, and the lavender chamomile scent has a calming effect on your dog and you. The paraben- and alcohol-free formula contains real coconut oil and FDA-approved colors. This dog shampoo will save you money over time as a little goes a long way, and you get more shampoo in one bottle than other brands.

Cons: If you or your dog dislike the scent of lavender, you may want to try a different product.

Bottom Line: Wahl created this gentle, calming, cleansing shampoo for all doggos, even ones with allergies. It’s a fantastic dog shampoo that will last a long time.

Final Thoughts

Dogs are the best! So they deserve the best care and the best shampoo. No one shampoo works for every dog and dog person, so it’s great that there are many to choose from. We hope this guide gave you some ideas on the shampoo type your dog may need and like.

Britta Kallevang Britta Kallevang
Britta is a professional writing tutor and freelance writer that is trained in journalistic, technical, and creative copywriting. At LifeSavvy, she researches products, writes about the items, and shares what she's uncovered with readers. Her writing is comprehensive and sometimes a bit silly. Read Full Bio »
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