The Best Dog Shampoo for Itching & Allergies

Cuteness may earn compensation through affiliate links in this story.

If it seems like your dog is scratching all day instead of wanting to play fetch, then it's time to get a shampoo to help calm your dog's itchy skin. The best dog shampoo for itching and allergies you can find will contain soothing ingredients, like aloe, oatmeal, glycerin, and buttermilk.

Advertisement

Look for shampoo containing soothing ingredients, like aloe, oatmeal, glycerin, and buttermilk.
Image Credit: CasarsaGuru/E+/GettyImages

Video of the Day

Because itchy skin is a symptom of allergies, skin infections, and even parasitic infestations, it's best to take your dog to the vet for a thorough exam if you notice that he seems to be scratching at his skin. Once you get a proper diagnosis, you can take steps to treat your dog's itchy skin, including using a dog shampoo containing skin-soothing ingredients.

Advertisement

Best dog shampoo for itchy skin

The best dog shampoo for itchy skin will include itch-relieving ingredients, like vegetable glycerin, oatmeal, and aloe vera. These natural ingredients help calm your dog's irritated skin by keeping it moisturized and combating inflammation. Other ingredients, like buttermilk, shea butter, and linseed oil, can also help provide some itch relief for your pup. Plus, they are safe to use with young puppies.

Advertisement

Stronger ingredients, like hydrocortisone and chlorhexidine gluconate, provide relief from skin inflammation and have antiseptic properties to help with any skin irritation or infections that have resulted from your dog's persistent scratching. You can find these in pet supply stores and through your veterinarian's office.

Advertisement

Dog shampoo for allergies to fleas

Most dogs are allergic to flea bites, and when they are infested with fleas, they will deal with itchy, irritated skin constantly. The best dog shampoo for allergies to fleas will contain insecticidal ingredients to kill any fleas on your dog's skin and coat. You'll also find ingredients included to combat inflammation, like oatmeal or hydrocortisone.

Advertisement

Insecticides, like pyrethrins, are commonly found in flea shampoos. These flea-fighters are crafted from flowers in the chrysanthemum family and are a little gentler on your dog's sensitive skin then synthetic permethrin. Remember to follow the directions for these types of shampoos and don't use them on very young puppies who can be sensitive to the insecticides they contain.

Advertisement

Best hypoallergenic dog shampoo

For dogs with very sensitive skin who suffer from environmental allergies, a hypoallergenic shampoo is a must. Hypoallergenic shampoos are typically free from fragrances, dyes, and alcohol, all of which can further irritate your dog's skin. Instead, they'll contain soothing ingredients, like vitamin E, lactic acid, and allantoin.

Advertisement

Vitamin E is a potent antioxidant that helps with the healing of skin lesions, and lactic acid is a mild exfoliant which helps keep the skin smooth and soft. Allantoin is a plant-based, anti-inflammatory ingredient.

These shampoos are meant for more frequent use than a traditional shampoo, which is why they will usually be soap-free. This ensures that they won't strip away your dog's natural oils and dry out her skin.

Advertisement

Using shampoo for dogs with skin allergies

Even if you use the best dog shampoo to bathe your pup, if you do so too frequently, you could actually make his skin problems worse. Frequent bathing can dry out your dog's skin and make it vulnerable to infections and hot spots. Unless you're dealing with a hairless breed that requires weekly bathing, a bath once every four to six weeks will suffice.

Soothing your dog's allergies

You might think using the best dog shampoo for itching in dogs will solve your pup's allergy issues, but unless you deal with the cause of the allergies, her itchy skin will continue to get worse. This is especially important if you're dealing with a food allergy.

Dogs with food allergies are usually reactive to a type of protein in their diet. This results in itchy skin and can only be stopped if you figure out what the offending ingredient is through a food trial prescribed by your veterinarian.

Environmental allergies to things like pollen and dust can really only be controlled with regular baths using a hypoallergenic medicated shampoo recommended by your veterinarian or immunomodulating drugs, like oral steroids.

Advertisement

references