“There is no other friend as loyal and as loving as a dog.” This is a true statement that has been proven for ages since ancient times. Dogs love their humans to the extent of making them their entire world until death. They are playful and a constant companion all day and all night long. Like humans, dogs also get dirty and sweaty and need cleaning. However, unlike us, dogs cannot take showers regularly, nor can we use any random cleansing agent for them. Specifically created dog shampoo and cleansing agents are always recommended.
How important is it to bathe a dog?
As mentioned above, unlike us, dogs cannot take a bath every day. Their body produces natural oil that creates a waterproof undercoat and helps in maintaining the core balance of the body. Regular washing will only remove this oil layer and cause unnecessary health ailments.
Besides that frequency of bathing the dog also depends on a few specific facts like –
- Hair length of the dog – Dogs with long hair coats often catch too much debris and dirt that needs regular cleaning. While dogs with short hair coats tend to get very less dirt accumulation on their jacket. Depending on such a situation, a dog should be bathed once a week to once a month.
- Daily activity routine – In case you have a working or hunting dog that loves to run around and play in water or pool of mud, or roll and dig around then it is definite that they will need regular cleaning if not a proper bath. Extra care should be taken to clean their paws and claws and areas near their snout and ears where debris is quickly accumulated.
- Allergies and skin condition – In case of itchy and flaky skin or any other such skin condition, they may need more or less frequent bath sessions. That is based on the instruction of the vet.
Grooming your dog the right way
Grooming is a fundamental necessity if you have a dog at home. While some dogs need daily grooming session, most only needs grooming once a week. Grooming is essential, especially during the shedding season. Brushing and removing the shed hair clogs helps in reducing the discomfort your dog faces during this change.
Like us, humans, dog hair also tends to grow at an alarmingly fast rate. If not groomed and trimmed regularly, it is easy to see deadlocks and hair clogs forming. Grooming is an essential part of day to day life of a dog.
It is often advised to use a pet-specific blow dryer after bathing the dog, to remove the extra fur and also dry their coat sooner. Regular grooming initiates the growth of shiny and glossy hair.
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Can human shampoo be used for our dogs?
No, not. Imagine trying to wash your hair with laundry detergent. It won’t be even a few weeks before your hair will start to shed wildly and your scalp will have flakes of skin dropping left and right.
Dogs have far more sensitive skin than we humans. They need to maintain a very delicate pH balance of 5.5 to 7 depending on the breed. This low pH level indicates higher alkalinity, which is contradictory to human skin which has more acidity to it.
Once the human shampoo is used on the dogs, the pH balance is wholly ruined, thus paving the way for all kinds of microorganisms to attack and grow on the dog’s skin and hair. This also, therefore, initiates massive skin dryness and abnormal hair shedding.
In case you are out of dog shampoo, you can use the baby shampoo once or twice at the maximum, but not more as the pH level of the baby shampoo is slightly lower.
What are the chemicals that are harmful to dogs?
There are numerous shampoos available in the market for dogs that claim to be the best. However, while selecting the right shampoo for your dogs, make sure that a few certain chemicals are indeed absent from the composition of the shampoo that you picked for the dog.
These specific chemicals include –
- Artificial colour and scent or fragrance
- Mineral oils like Phthalates, paraben, formaldehyde, etc.
- Cocamide DEA
- Sodium Lauryl Sulphate
These chemicals over the period lead to serious health ailments in dogs like Cancer, excessive hair falls with balding patches, itching, and other random skin infections and conditions, Blindness, Loss of senses like smell and sight, etc.
Which veterinary experts recommend the best shampoos?
Just like humans, dog shampoo should be chosen based on the requirement of the dog. While selecting the right shampoo, the factors that should be considered include –
- Skin type
- Presence or absence of fleas and ticks
- Skin conditions like rashes and itches
- Kind of fur coat and the length of the coat
- The age of the dog
- The shine of the coat
- Colour of the coat
Based on the criteria above, selecting the right shampoo becomes one step easier.
The best and most recommended shampoos for dogs of 2019 include –
Best Scented Dog Shampoo:
- Fresh ‘n’ Clean Scented Shampoo
- Natural Chemistry Natural Lavender Shampoo
Best Waterless shampoo for dogs:
- Miracle Coat Dog Spray-On Shampoo
Dog Shampoo for Sensitive Skin:
- Pro Pet Works Natural Oatmeal Shampoo and Conditioner at Amazon
- 4-Legger Certified Organic Dog Shampoo
- Earthbath All Natural Pet Shampoo
Best Dog Shampoo for Shedders:
- FURminator deShedding Ultra Premium Dog Shampoo
- Burt’s Bees Oatmeal Shampoo with Colloidal Oat Flour & Honey for Dogs
Dog Shampoo for Dry Skin:
- Radiance Naturals Oatmeal and Aloe Shampoo
- Earthbath Oatmeal and Aloe Conditioner
Best Flea and tick dog shampoo
- Adams Flea and Tick Cleansing Shampoo
Shampoo for Puppies:
- Wahl Puppy Shampoo
What is the natural alternative that can be used instead of shampoo?
One of the best natural alternatives to shampoo is a simple DIY pack made out of Oatmeal and aloe vera gel. This natural Oatmeal shampoo is perfect for dogs with sensitive skin.
Ground oatmeal should be mixed with an equal portion of water and aloe vera gel and left to soak for about 30 minutes. Once absorbed, it should be rubbed all over the dog’s body in the form of a scrub and massaged for a few minutes.
The process is similar to that of shampooing. A few minutes of lather later, washing away with cold water is sufficient. The Oatmeal helps in relieving itchiness by removing the ticks, and dry, scaly skin and the aloe vera acts as a natural hydration agent, thus improving the natural moisture of the body.
Contrary to popular belief, dogs also need care and love. Their happiness, beauty, and innocence are worth it only if you love and cherish them well.