A Guide to Shampoo for Dogs
Anyone who has ever tried to buy dog shampoo will know there are almost as many different types of shampoo for dogs as there are for humans. The reason is that different shampoos perform different functions, and it is important to find the right one to fit your dog's individual needs. This article is a guide to the various uses and benefits of dog shampoo, and it also looks at some of the different kinds available.
How is Dog Shampoo Different to Our Shampoo?
The most important thing to remember when shampooing a dog is that you should never use human shampoo. This is because shampoos designed for human skin have a higher PH level than those designed for dogs, and this can cause irritation and allergic reactions on their skin.
The other key difference is that because dogs are more sensitive to substances getting into their eyes, many of their shampoos are developed with a non-tearing formula. This is to prevent irritation and stinging occurring during the washing process.
Despite being lower PH and less likely to hurt the eyes, dogs' shampoo does essentially the same job as its human equivalent, which is cleaning away dirt and excess oils. Different shampoos are formulated according to the different needs of various skin types, so there are some products suitable for normal skin, some suitable for dry skin, and some designed for particularly oily skin.
Finding the Right Dog Shampoo
It is worth spending the time finding out which one is right for your dog, and this is something your veterinary surgeon will be able to help you with. If your dog has any particular skin condition or disorder, there are also medicated shampoos available that may be suitable for them. However, these tend to be prescription only, so are only recommended if the ailment is very severe.
More and more owners are now also opting to use natural substances when grooming their dog, so when it comes to washing and conditioning they use something like pennyroyal shampoo, which contains a plant extract that has a deoderising effect and deters fleas. Natural shampoos are also often very good at holding moisture to the skin, and are generally less likely to cause allergies than non-natural ones.
A bottle of canine shampoo is likely to last you several months, so you don't necessarily have to just go with the cheapest one. As a general rule, products that lather up well, give your dog a shiny coat and don't cause irritation when suds get in their eye are ideal.
As a final cautionary note, if you try a new shampoo on your dog and it does not react well to it, you should cease applying it immediately. Remember also to read the instructions on the label, as some shampoos will need dilution before they can be safely applied. With a little trial and error, before long you should be able to find the perfect shampoo to give your dog a deep, thorough, and happy cleansing experience.