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The ABCs of choosing the best dog shampoos

Mike Moran

The ABCs of choosing the best dog shampoos

We all know happiness starts with a wet nose and ends with a tail, we just need to find the best shampoo to wash in between!

Your fur baby has given you a lease of new life, is a loving comforter and brings you joy, so of course, you want to pamper your pooch. What better way than bath time! Cue bubbles, a frenzy of energy, and loads of laughter. Most of our furry friends love a bath, a body massage and being loved up a little bit more than usual ‘cos who can resist a clean dog cuddle or three!?

Choosing the best dog shampoo used to be a challenge but with these ABC’s, it’s as easy as can be. 

Authorities – Ensure your dog shampoo is made by a company with manufacturing approvals from the relevant authorities in the country it is produced. Having an accredited manufacturing facility and medical-grade practices with clinical testing means you can be assured the benefits of a product outweigh the known risks for the intended use. Most countries have various statutory bodies for these purposes.

  • Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in America, 
  • Good Manufacturing Process (GMP) license in Australia 
  • Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority (APVMA

A review of safety and effectiveness by FDA experts and agency approval before a product is marketed, and centralized registration of all agricultural and veterinary chemical products into the marketplace, for example, gives you a safeguard that you are making a good choice for your pet products such as shampoo. Normally companies who have been through these approvals, promote them on their websites. Check out the ‘about us’ page on a company’s website, the additional information or details tab on the product page online or the actual product label. 

Balance – Shampoos for pets are made to suit animal skin pH which is different in dogs and cats, than it is in humans. “The chemistry of a dog’s skin and fur are different than the chemistry of a human’s skin and hair” states Sarah Hoggan of Washington State University. Canines skin is less acidic than humans. An incorrect pH creates a risk of irritating the skin by changing the skin surface layers. When this occurs, the skin has to work quickly to rectify the pH balance. During the time the skin tries to rectify itself, its safety is compromised and can become dry and receptive to bacteria and parasites, along with a rather long list of other possible ramifications for your dog. The easy mistake of using your own hairdresser-recommended-salon-quality-amazing-smelling shampoo, on your dog, is often how an unhealthy skin cycle begins, so choose wisely for your pet. 

Cleansers – You’ve probably heard about soap free being great for dogs, but who wants to wash their dog without a good lather? No one right. But be rest assured many soap-free products still lather, foam and bubble without soap. And even if you do choose a soap-free product that doesn’t lather, your pet will not miss out. Lather is air bubbles trapped in the water component of the shampoo and provides a pleasing action for us doggy parents. However, it has no additional cleansing action. So, soap-free products avoid stripping important oils from your pet’s coat and skin; a great incentive to choose soap-free, whether your pet has sensitive skin or not. 

Next on your list, is to determine what cleanings properties are important to you and your dog. 

  • Brighten a white coat  
  • Remove dirt or dust from your energetic explorer-dog
  • Sheen and shine black fur
  • Conditioning and nourishing 
  • Tick and flea repellent 
  • A clean fresh scent that linger for days
  • Medicated treatment for yeast, fungi or bacterial infections
  • Herbal extracts for a natural clean
  • Detangling properties for long hair fluffy friends 

Plant-based cleansers such as oatmeal, aloe vera or tea tree assist your dog’s skin to retain the pH necessary for optimal health, promote removing dirt and leave a natural fragrance. Baking soda is great for deodorizing. Chamomile is soothing for pre-existing sensitivities. Products with lavender, peppermint or eucalyptus not only leave that all-important fragrance but assist to replace the oils necessary for skin health and provide insect repellency as well. 

A simple Google search will reveal that there is a myriad of products on the market. With a brand that has clinical testing approved by relevant authorities and is specifically formulated with pH balanced for dogs, you are well on your way to starting the trial phase. Choose your most important reason for cleansing and hit search. 

Each breed has different requirements, and every dog is unique. With the added reality of changing needs throughout our canine baby’s life cycle, some trial and error is unavoidable. Deciding the most important aspects, from the list above, you can go in search of the perfect product to pamper your pet. 

To save you time, you can be assured Fido’s dog and cat shampoo’s and other grooming products are specifically formulated for pets, pH balanced and manufactured under strict GMP and APVMA requirements. Developed by veterinarians, extensively tested and sold for nearly 40 years, the brand is safe, high quality and trusted. So order your chosen shampoo and grab your bundle of happiness. Start with the wet nose kiss, apply the ABC’s and pamper ‘til you hit the tail. Happiness is … a clean fur baby!   

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