Human shampoo for dogs is a popular topic in many discussion forums. With so many pet owners out there (and some even out there who don’t own any dogs…just kidding about that part) looking for the most effective way to care for their dogs, they end up researching all types of human shampoos and sometimes wonder just what it would be like to bathe their dog in them. So lets take a closer look at this question. Can I use human shampoo on my dog? Well, this short article serves as a basic guide to that question as least tangentially, just sharing facts and separating these from fiction so as to keep you as objective as possible.
Most dogs do NOT require human formulated products to clean themselves. Humans have been using such products for centuries to soften their hair and soothe their skin and those products actually work on dogs as long as the pH balance is maintained. The pH balance is a very important component of our bodies, as it helps us break down food to absorb nutrients and maintain body pH at a stable level.
So can I use a human shampoo for a dog? In reality, no. There are several reasons behind this. First, if you use such pet products on your hair, they will not be compatible with your dog’s sensitive skin, since they are typically more alkaline based. Second, the pH level of your dog’s skin is far too high to properly absorb anything, so any type of soap or shampoo will ultimately cause dry, itchy skin and irritation.
Can I use a human shampoo formulated specifically for pets? Yes, you can. There are a few brands out there that are formulated for use on animals and are suitable for use in a bath for a dog. These types of products will have a pH balanced formula that will hydrate your dog while ridding him or her of excess moisture and dry, itchy skin.
Can dogs develop allergies? Yes, there can be many different types of allergies that can develop from such harsh shampoos. If the pH imbalance is due to an allergic reaction, then your dog may show signs of itching, redness and even swelling. Such symptoms can be quickly addressed by switching your dog to a milder form of the shampoo. De-hydrating shampoos can also lead to excessive dryness of the skin, which can eventually lead to cracking.
Are artificial fragrances better than natural human shampoos? The answer is definitely no! One of the biggest complaints about commercial dog shampoos is that they contain harmful, artificial ingredients. These types of chemicals can mimic the smell of a real dog food and can actually make your dog sick. Natural dog perfumes and natural fragrances such as tea tree oil are far better for your dog.
Can I use a human shampoo for a dog that is sensitive? In general, it’s best to try to avoid using any shampoo containing artificial ingredients at all. Some of these artificial ingredients are known to cause irritation and can even cause your dog to develop allergies. If you suspect that a particular brand of dog shampoo is causing your pet to develop an allergy, then it’s best to remove the item from your dog’s dog shampoo supply list altogether and substitute a brand that doesn’t contain these types of ingredients.
Is there a difference between human and dog shampoos for sensitive skin? The truth is that there is no difference at all! Dog skin doesn’t have a protective coat like we do, so it’s just as likely that your dog will develop skin problems as we do. Specially formulated shampoos such as those that contain aloe vera, tea tree oil and other plant extracts are the best options for soothing irritated skin and keeping fleas away.