Bathing your puppy plays a vital role in maintaining their overall health.
Not only washing your dog can remove dirt, unpleasant odor, loose hair and keep their coat silky and smelling fresh, but can also heal damaged hair, infected or inflamed skin and prevent dandruff or scale.
And, of course, bathing your little one requires the best puppy shampoo.
Whether you are looking for a tearless, soap-free shampoo, an organic or all-natural shampoo, a hypoallergenic shampoo for sensitive skin, or the ones that can help soothe and repair your furkid’s dry, itchy skin, we’ve got you covered.
Here are the 8 top-rated puppy shampoos you can buy today!
Table: List of Best Puppy Shampoos
Our Top Pick - Pet Pleasant Colloidal Oatmeal Puppy Shampoo
Pet odor eliminator enhanced with pure lavender essential oils
While many shampoos can clean and deodorize, the Pet Pleasant Colloidal Oatmeal Puppy Shampoo can lather away nasty odors and leave your dog’s coat smelling extra-fresh.
It is hypoallergenic, made with natural ingredients such as colloidal oatmeal and jojoba oil, known to have natural nourishing, detoxing, and hydrating properties. It is specially formulated for puppies with sensitive skin, with its clinical strength to cleanse, protect, combat, and soothe dry, flaky, irritated skin, and enhanced with pure lavender essential oils to help your pup get into a calm and relaxed state.
This puppy shampoo is also tear-free and doesn’t contain any harsh chemicals like parabens and sulfates, so you can rest assured that it’s safe. What’s more, it has a 100% money-back guarantee, making it one of the most popular options among pet parents.
Best Overall - Wahl Gentle Puppy Shampoo for Pets
Gentle puppy formula dog shampoo
The Wahl Gentle Puppy Shampoo for Pets is another highly rated shampoo that you can consider.
It is pH balanced and includes cornflower and aloe vera to gently cleanse and protect your canine’s delicate skin and leave their coat looking smooth. Thanks to its higher concentration of the coconut-derived sodding agent, it can create a thick lather with a relatively small amount of shampoo compared to other brands.
It is made in the US, contains no alcohol, parabens, or PEG-80, and is safe for puppies who have sensitive skin. The best thing about this dog shampoo is that you can also use it on adult dogs, not just puppies!
Best for Puppies Under 12 Weeks - Earthbath Ultra-Mild Wild Cherry Puppy Shampoo
Extra-gentle and no-tear coat grooming shampoo
Is your puppy under 12 weeks of age? If so, consider the Earthbath Ultra-Mild Wild Cherry Puppy Shampoo, perhaps the mildest dog shampoo on the market. In fact, it is gentler than the mildest baby shampoo!
It is formulated with a pH as close to neutral to ensure that it won’t damage your pooch’s skin or fur and is mild enough to be used on puppies as young as six weeks old. It uses a fine blend of gentle cleansers and organic aloe vera, with a baby-fresh cherry scent to wash your pup and keep their coat clean, soft, shiny, and sweet-smelling.
This puppy shampoo is tear-free, soap-free, cruelty-free, 100% biodegradable, and doesn’t contain gluten, DEA, parabens, synthetic dyes, sulfates, or phthalates. To top it all, it offers a 100% money-back guarantee!
Best All-Natural - Burt’s Bees All-Natural Tearless Puppy Shampoo & Conditioner
2-in-1 soap-free, all-natural dog shampoo & conditioner
Want a natural dog shampoo? Check out the Burt’s Bees All-Natural Tearless Puppy Shampoo & Conditioner.
It has a gentle and tearless formula to clean your fido, made with all-natural ingredients, including nourishing buttermilk, which can soothe skin and soften hair, plus linseed oil to condition your canine’s coat. It also has an appropriate pH level for puppies and adult dogs, meaning it won’t cause rashes, irritation, or other discomforts.
Additionally, it is made in the US and formulated without sulfates, colorants, added fragrances, or harsh chemicals.
Best for Itchy Skin - Pet Pleasant Colloidal Oatmeal Dog Shampoo for Dry Itchy Skin
Anti-itch dog shampoo with healing moisturizers
Does your dog itch a lot? If so, you would probably want to consider the Pet Pleasant Colloidal Oatmeal Dog Shampoo for Dry Itchy Skin.
It is a nourishing shampoo and conditioner that utilizes a pure and natural formula. It incorporates ingredients like colloidal oatmeal at its maximum dosage for extra strength to provide full relief for dry and flaky skin, fortified with healing moisturizers like jojoba oil and Provitamin B5 to combat rashes and skin irritation. Not only that, but it also doubles as a safe and effective stink remover to help eliminate foul odor.
As if that wasn’t impressive enough, this puppy shampoo can also help detangle your fido’s fur and leave their coat soft and smooth.
Best for Sensitive Skin - 4-Legger USDA Certified Organic Dog Shampoo
Organic and hypoallergenic dog shampoo
If your dog has sensitive skin, then the 4-Legger USDA Certified Organic Dog Shampoo may be a better option.
It is hypoallergenic and specially formulated for dogs with sensitive skin. It is made with organic coconut oil and soothing aloe vera to bathe your little one to remove dirt, debris, and stinky smell without triggering any allergic reactions. Plus, it contains organic lemongrass essential oil to naturally repel fleas and keep your dog’s coat soft and shiny.
This puppy shampoo is easy to lather and rinse off and is free from toxic ingredients. Also, there are no artificial thickeners in it, so expect a quick pour!
Best for Fleas - SENTRY Oatmeal Flea and Tick Shampoo for Dogs
Medicated dog shampoo that kills fleas and ticks
Found fleas and ticks on your puppy while grooming them? Then you would want to bathe them with the SENTRY Oatmeal Flea and Tick Shampoo for Dogs instead.
It is a gentle yet effective medicated shampoo with oatmeal, designed to kill pesky pests, plus clean, deodorize, and condition your furkid’s coat. It can kill fleas for up to 10 days and can even get deer ticks that may carry Lyme disease off your four-legged friend, ultimately keeping them safe and healthy.
Additionally, it is pH balanced, meaning it won’t dry out the skin. It is also safe for use on puppies older than 12 weeks.
Best Multipurpose - Pet Care Science Tearless Puppy Shampoo and Conditioner
A 5-in-1 natural formulation that cleans, conditions, moisturizes, deodorizes, and detangles
The Pet Care Science Tearless Puppy Shampoo and Conditioner is another excellent option you can consider, with a 5-in-1 professional-grade formulation that can help clean, condition, moisturize, deodorize, and detangle your fido’s coat all at the same.
Made with oatmeal, aloe, and coconut oil, designed to replenish skin’s moisture balance, detangle your puppy’s fur and keep their coat soft, shiny, and hydrated. It is also free from sulfates, parabens, DEA, phosphates, and synthetic ingredients that could cause allergies or skin rashes.
Additionally, this dog shampoo is made in the US and has a 100% satisfaction guarantee.
Best Puppy Shampoo
Buyer’s Guide: What to Consider?
When it comes to selecting a puppy shampoo for your furkid, there are a few things you need to consider. Below are some of them.
1. Natural Ingredients
First, check the ingredients used in the puppy shampoo that you are going to buy. Many shampoos contain alcohol, detergents, and harsh chemicals like parabens and sulfates to achieve a better and more effective cleaning job. While that may sound like a great deal, you would want to avoid using them. The reason being is that they can cause skin rashes, irritation, inflammation, and potentially lead to excessive hair loss. So, always choose the ones that contain as many natural ingredients as possible.
2. pH Balanced
The best puppy shampoo should also have a pH value that matches or close to your dog’s skin, which is near 7 (neutral). That is to prevent it from stripping away your dog’s skin and coat of natural essential oils, thereby keeping them safe from all kinds of skin-related problems.
3. Tearless Formulation
You also notice many dog shampoos use a tearless, tear-free, or no-tear formula. That means they are gentle on the skin and won’t irritate your furry friend’s eyes, and that’s what you would want for washing puppies’ delicate skin and coat. It is also important to note that no shampoos should ever get in your dog’s eyes regardless of how gentle it is.
Shampoos with added vitamins are especially beneficial to dogs, like the Pet Pleasant Colloidal Oatmeal Puppy Shampoo with Lavender Essential Oil, Earthbath Ultra-Mild Wild Cherry Puppy Shampoo, and Pet Pleasant Colloidal Oatmeal Dog Shampoo for Dry Itchy Skin. Vitamin A, B, and E and Provitamin B5 can help nourish, protect, and heal damaged skin. And these vitamins can benefit all dogs regardless of the breeds.
5. Skin Condition
Some breeds are predisposed to developing skin allergies, such as Shih Tzus, Golden Retrievers, and Labrador Retrievers. Doodle breeds like Goldendoodles and Labradoodles are also prone to allergies. So if your puppy has sensitive skin, it’s probably a good idea to wash them with a hypoallergenic shampoo like the 4-Legger USDA Certified Organic Dog Shampoo to prevent any possible skin issues.
6. Type of Coat: Short Hair vs. Long Hair
Dogs have a wide variety of coats, short, long, thin, thick, single-coated, double-coated, and more. Picking a mild shampoo for short-haired dogs like Chihuahuas and Vizslas may be enough. But if you have a long-haired dog such as Shih Tzus and Golden Retrievers, then you may need shampoos that contain conditioning agents to make their fur softer and easier to manage.
Puppy shampoos don’t necessarily deodorize. For instance, the Burt’s Bees All-Natural Tearless Puppy Shampoo & Conditioner is scent-free. So if your dog loves to spend most of their time outdoors, you may be better off choosing those that have natural fragrances like lavender to help eliminate the stinky smell.
Step-by-step Guide on How to Bathe Your Puppy
- Brush your dog with a grooming glove to get rid of dirt, debris, and excess hair.
- Help your four-legged friend into the bathtub.
- Wet them thoroughly with a shower sprayer using lukewarm water.
- Pour some puppy shampoo on your hands and slowly work into your fido’s coat and skin. Start from head to tail and avoid areas near their eyes.
- Rinse them thoroughly, from head to tail, and make sure to avoid getting the soap and water in their eyes.
- Dry your little one thoroughly with a towel or dog dryer.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I use medicated shampoos on my puppy to get rid of fleas and ticks?
It’s usually not recommended to use flea shampoos on puppies under 12 weeks of age. Once your canine has passed the 12 weeks mark, then you can give them a flea bath. But make sure to read and follow the instructions and always pick the ones that are mild and contain natural ingredients.
Can I use human soaps or shampoos on my puppy?
The answer is no. The reason being is that a dog’s skin is very close to a neutral pH of 7. A human’s skin, on the other hand, is about 5.5. And our soaps and shampoos are formulated to a pH level of around 4.5-5.5, meaning it is too acidic for dogs. Using human soaps or shampoos on your pup can cause irritation and strip away their coat and skin of essential oils and make them more vulnerable to bacteria, viruses, and parasites.
How often should I bathe my puppy?
It depends on things like your dog’s breeds, fur length, health, and how dirty they are. And obviously, dogs who love to spend time outdoors will require a bath more often than those who prefer to stay indoors. That said, you don’t want to bathe them too frequently to avoid drying out their skin and make them more prone to dandruff, frizzies, and mats.
Unless you only let professional groomers wash your puppy, you will need shampoo to keep them clean and healthy. And when it comes to buying a shampoo for your furry friend, make sure to check the ingredients included. Always avoid those containing ingredients like parabens, sulfates, artificial fragrances and colorants, and other harmful chemicals that could harm your furkid’s skin and coat.