Do You Know What's In Your Dogs Shampoo? We Do, It's Scary!

Dog shampoo. Probably something you only purchase a few times a year. Probably not something you pay too close attention too. We all lead busy lives, it’s easy to go into a pet store or even a supermarket and pick up the first shampoo that meets the eye.

You go home, wash the dog, then carry on with your day. I’m sure most of us have all been guilty of this at some point in our pets’ lives.

What we don’t generally do is sit and think how some ingredients found in common pet shampoos can really affect our dogs’ skin, coat and overall health. Certain ingredients can also imbalance their skin PH which can cause a whole host of problems.  

Due to only being 3-5 cells thick, a dog’s skin is extremely delicate and more sensitive than human skin. This also means that any chemicals used in these products can affect a dog faster than it would us.

Some of you may now be saying ‘I’ve never had any issues with my dog after using a dog shampoo’ but some effects are not immediate, and you may not begin to notice anything until a few years down the line.

One extremely common ingredient found in pet shampoos are artificial colours. This has absolutely no benefit, apart from making the shampoo more eye catching for us. (And we fall for it, right?) Chances are those pretty bright green and pink shampoos you may have used contain by products of petroleum. Petroleum on your dogs’ delicate skin? Ouch!

The ingredients used to make these artificial colours have also been linked to cancer and organ damage. So, when it seems that your dog is fine after using these shampoos, take a second to think about the long-term effects. Poor dogs!

We all love a nice smelling shampoo and a nice smelling dog. But are the scents that you can smell in these shampoos dangerous? Generally, it is a good idea to steer clear of any shampoos that state ‘fragrance’ on the ingredients list. ‘Fragrance’ is what manufacturers use to hide the nasty word phthalates. Phthalates are what ‘bond’ the fragrance onto the other ingredients, making it smell nice, use after use. There has been research to indicate that phthalates are a cause of hormone disruption in your dog. Try and opt for a shampoo that is fragranced with essential oils rather than artificial fragrances.

Steer clear of these following unnatural ingredients most commonly found in pet shampoos, these have all been known to cause serious skin irritation and have a high risk of being contaminated with even more toxic ingredients;

  • Sodium Laureth Sulfate -Used as a cleansing agent
  • Sodium Lauryl Sulfate -Used as a detergent and emulsifier
  • Ammonium Laureth Sufate -Used to create a foamy texture
  • Cocamidopropyl betaine -Used to make a product thicker
  • Formaldehyde preservatives -Will not generally be labelled a formaldehyde preservative and will usually be hidden by words such as Bromopol, Doazolidinyl urea, DMDM Hydantoin, Imidazolidinyl urea, Quaternium-7, -15, -31, -61, and Sodium hydroxymethylglycinate.
  • Methylisothiazolinone and Methylchloroisothiazolinone- Used as a preservative


Basically, if you can’t pronounce any of the ingredients, it’s a very good idea to think twice before using it.

Next time you run out of your dog’s shampoo, just take a little time to think about what shampoo you are going to choose for your pet.


Why not try one of our natural shampoos?

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