Our Top Pick
Groom Professional Baby Fresh Shampoo
Jug Dog Rating
We’ve reviewed over 30 different dog shampoo brands which are available in the UK to bring our readers a definite list of the top 10. We all love our dogs but no one loves a smelly one so we’ve also included a handy dog shampoo buyer’s guide to explain why washing a dog is something you should definitely do and what product may be best for you and your dog. Lastly, we’ve also included a dead simple guide on how to wash your pooch! Enjoy and remember to leave a comment at the bottom of the page.
Best Dog Shampoo Brands in the UK
Best Dog Shampoo Reviews
- Our Top Pick
- Groom Professional Baby Fresh Shampoo
- Best Dog Shampoo Brands in the UK
- Best Dog Shampoo Reviews
- 1. Groomers Oatmeal and Honey Shampoo
- 2. Groom Profesional Baby Fresh Shampoo
- 3. ProGroom Natural Oatmeal Dog Shampoo
- 4. Nootie Cucumber Melon Pet Shampoo
- 5. Animology “Fox Poo” Deodorising Dog Shampoo
- 6. DermOpt 6 in 1 Dog Shampoo and Conditioner
- 7. Chambers and Co Natural Shampoo with Essential Oils
- 8. Wahl Showman Aloe Soothe Oatmeal Shampoo
- 9. Johnson’s Dog Deodorant Shampoo
- 10. Paw Solez Avocado Dry Dog Shampoo
- Do dogs need to be washed?
- Why dogs shouldnt be washed too often
- How often should a dog be washed
- Types of dog shampoos
- What to look for in a good dog shampoo
- How to use dog shampoos
1. Groomers Oatmeal and Honey Shampoo
Groomer’s Oatmeal and Honey Shampoo is one of the highest rated dog shampoos on the UK market. Made using sensitive skin friendly ingredients which will soothe and moisturise your dog while giving them a healthy and vibrant coat afterwards. The fragrance is pleasant and not overpowering – they will certainly feel a lot better but don’t expect them to make guests ask you where you got the product from! The honey comes from the royal jelly included which aids skin and gives the smell.
To top it off, Groomer’s Oatmeal and Honey Shampoo is an all natural, environmentally friendly shampoo free from all the nasty chemicals we recommend to avoid. All things considered, we feel that this one of the best dog shampoos out there and it’s not expensive either!
2. Groom Profesional Baby Fresh Shampoo
Groomer’s Professional “Baby Fresh” shampoo offers a deep clean and popular gentle baby product scent afterwards. This dog shampoo is easy on the skin as it contains aloe vera which helps the skin and doubles as a natural conditioner. The ingredients used are mostly natural which won’t irritate your dog but it isn’t THE most natural dog shampoo you’re going to encounter in this list.
What we would say is most noteworthy about this shampoo is its ability to leave your dog clean and soft and smell great (just like a baby!) at a fantastic online only price. However, if you’re after an environmentally friendly option then this isn’t it. As this is an online only product the price is one of the most competitive in the UK market!
3. ProGroom Natural Oatmeal Dog Shampoo
ProGroom natural oatmeal dog shampoo is another 100% vegan and natural dog shampoo which is very kind on skin and very suitable for dogs who have skin problems in general. The colloidal oatmeal used is effective in not only soothing the skin but makes repair it while they’re being washed. Because the ingredients are so organic this shampoo can be used more often than usual as it maintains their natural oils. This shampoo will get rid of unpleasant odours but it isn’t the nicest smelling if that’s something you care a lot about.
As if what we’ve already said wasn’t enough, ProGroom natural oatmeal shampoo also protects your dog from fleas, ticks and other parasites. What’s not to like? It’s on the more expensive side but you do get a whole lot of product for your money.
4. Nootie Cucumber Melon Pet Shampoo
Nootie’s dog shampoo is a fantastic all natural entry into the world of pet shampoos. It uses aloe vera and oatmeal as do many of the best ones which soothe, heal and moisturise your dog’s delicate skin. Nootie’s have gone further than most oatmeal based dog shampoos by adding a pleasant cucumber and melon scent after a wash. This is soap and paraben free so you can be rest assured that they will most certainly not have skin problems post wash. It does not contain any any tick/flea formula.
We love this shampoo. There are more heavy duty shampoos out there and there are also better smelling ones too, but there aren’t many, if any at all, alternatives that are so good for the skin AND have a positive non-neutral smell! We thoroughly recommend this shampoo for most breeds of dogs that do not have specialist fur requirements!
5. Animology “Fox Poo” Deodorising Dog Shampoo
Animology’s “fox poo” deodorising dog shampoo is a fabulously powerful and cheap dog shampoo designed more for getting rid of bad smells than it is for soothing skin etc. It is designed for a deeper clean for dogs who are genuinely smelly. If you’ve got dogs who are active, hang around in the great outdoors more than usual or have dogs with thick fur which is difficult to penetrate for less powerful shampoos then this one might be the product for you. It combats fox poo, dead fish and any other nasty smells your dog might have picked up. If your dog never gets that smelly then this is perhaps a bit overkill.
It’s 100% vegan, anti-bacterial and made using materials which will protect your dog’s natural ph levels (the acid mantle) and includes pro-vitamin B5 which acts as a natural conditioner. All in all, we’re hugely impressed by this shampoo and would be happy to put it down as one of the best dog shampoos that gets rid of bad smells!
6. DermOpt 6 in 1 Dog Shampoo and Conditioner
DermOpt 6 in 1 Dog Shampoo and Conditioner is a versatile dog shampoo that does it all and does it well. It is a concentrated dog shampoo that needs diluting to suit whatever needs your dog has, be it a thick furry coat, dry itchy skin or a flea-bitten coat. On top of that, it has a conditioner included which a lot of these shampoos we’ve reviewed don’t. What we found with this shampoo is just how impressive the finish it gave to a freshly washed coat – it was so fluffy, vibrant and nice smelling that it performs as if it’s the leading brand.
So let’s recap, it’s got anti flea, hypoallergenic, skin soothing, strong fur washing, coat conditioning abilities and it has over 200 reviews on Amazon?! What’s not to like? This is a serious contender as the best dog shampoo on the UK market – the only thing people may sniff at is that the ingredients contain a lot of science-y sounding chemicals and it’s not 100% vegan or has only natural ingredients.
7. Chambers and Co Natural Shampoo with Essential Oils
This Chambers & Co natural dog shampoo with essential oils is a coconut based shampoo as opposed to chemicals or oatmeal as is the usual – this makes this option one of the nicest smelling and ‘freshest’ shampoos we’ve had the pleasure to test out. The aroma is top notch and it’s so easy to lather in and rinse out thanks to its less thick formula. The essential oils included sound like something someone from Avon would be trying to sell to you but they’re there to relieve and treat itchy skin as well as prevent dryness following a wash – it works. This shampoo also contains pro vitamin b5 which acts as the conditioner. All ingredients are naturally sourced.
The essential oils and one of the reasons why this dog shampoo smells so good are peppermint, lavender, chamomile and calendula infusion. We’ve got to say, we found this dog shampoo to be one of the nicest feeling and best aroma out of all the dog shampoos and while we researched other people’s reviews we found that it was overwhelming how many others felt the same. This is highly recommended.
8. Wahl Showman Aloe Soothe Oatmeal Shampoo
Wahl is a famous brand which makes a lot of human hair products such as clippers and shampoos… but they’ve lent their experience also to pet products such as this fantastic oatmeal based shampoo designed to get your pooch’s coat to be show quality hence the showman mention. The version we’ve shown here is the aloe soothe which is designed to keep skin nice and moisturised but Wahl do offer speciality shampoos if you follow the link we’ve given such as diamond shine (white coats), copper tones, showman dirty beastie for really mucky dogs and mucky puppy for… mucky pups.
It’s for their speciality and a broad range of shampoos which aren’t just designed for dogs (horses, rabbits, cats etc can also use these) and an overwhelming number of positive reviews which has got this product comfortably in our top 10 list and most specialist brand of dog shampoos on the UK market in 2019. Be sure to click the link to view all of the versions they’ve got available on Amazon.
9. Johnson’s Dog Deodorant Shampoo
If you’ve been reading this wondering where the hell are the budget dog shampoos and ones with a bit more return on very little investment then here it is in all it’s glory. Johnson’s dog shampoo is the cheapest on the market and the cheapest on this list by quite some margin with bottles often going for less than £3 when they’re on offer. It is a pretty bog standard shampoo that’s goal is to give them a basic wash and get rid of nasty odours and do you know what? It does that just as well as any of them.
It foams excellently and the smell after the wash is very pleasant. However! This product is perfumed and does have some chemicals which may or may not irritate the skin of sensitive dogs so be wary of its use on dogs which could be affected. The ingredients list are hard to find and it is not 100% organic or natural so take that into consideration. However, if you’re just after a cheap dog shampoo then here it is.
10. Paw Solez Avocado Dry Dog Shampoo
Paw Solez avocado dry dog shampoo is our first and only dry dog shampoo on this – we wanted to make sure we gave everyone one option from this type of shampoo so we just put in the best one out there. This stuff, just like dry shampoo that we would use, is suited for those who don’t want to get wet or just don’t like a bath. It won’t give your dog as much of a deep clean as the traditional shampoos but it will get you the next best thing. If anything, this shampoo could be ideal as an ‘in between wash’ option.
Even though it’s dry shampoo it’s still made using natural ingredients which soothe and repair dog’s skin thanks to the inclusion of aloe vera and provitamin b5. We found it dead easy to apply and no hassle to brush out after with no lasting dustiness. Although there are not an abundance of reviews, they are all positive which is worth a mention. This is a very handy dog shampoo to keep in the glove box when you’re going out for a hike or a longer walk but for a deeper clean get one of our other recommendations.
Do dogs need to be washed?
A dog’s skin and coat are very effective at keeping dirt away and functioning a long time before they have the need to be washed. Dogs are also much better at self-grooming than we are and they can extend the time between washes before the smell and hygiene become a noticeable problem, unlike us. After a time, an unhygienic dog may start to get problems such as bacterial, fungal and skin issues if they are left too long without a bath.
Why dogs shouldnt be washed too often
Indeed, dogs do need to be washed regularly but not too regularly as it could disrupt their natural pH level which can lead to issues of the skin and even fur. It is for this reason that we advised to wash your dogs no longer than every 3 months but no more than every other week.
We’ve touched on the subject of a dog’d natural pH level as to why they shouldn’t be washed with dog shampoo too often. Some people call it the dog’s natural oils and others call it the ‘acid mantle’ – what they all agree on, though, is that it is a layer of protection that dogs have between the skin and the outside which helps them be protected from external threats such as bacteria, fungal infections as well as making their coat waterproof. This ‘acid mantle’ keeps their fur clean (we mentioned self grooming) and their skin free from infections, rashes and allergic reactions.
If your dog loves a bath then it can be very tempting to give your dog a wash often. You love it, they love it and they smell great more often. Bathing a dog with dog shampoo does lessen the barrier each time, but when it’s not too regular there is plenty of time for it to recover. Washing your dog too regularly will start to remove the barrier faster than it could recover leaving your dog’s skin and fur vulnerable to some of the threats it would have easily dealt with in the past. Skin conditions often follows a dog which is washed too often.
How often should a dog be washed
As a rough estimate and purely Jug Dog’s opinion and not qualified veterinarian advice, a dog should be washed no more often than every other week and they should go without a wash no longer than 3 months. This is quite a broad estimate but we will now explain some factors to help you determine what’s the best dog washing frequency for you and your furry friend.
Despite most of their skin being covered up, dogs still have different skin types just like me and you. After a while, you’ll get to know what type of skin they have and how it reacts to being washed. If you’ve got a dog that has dry/flaky skin then washing them every other week is probably too much but if you have a dog with ‘perfect’ skin which doesn’t react badly to anything then more regular washed can be tolerated and enjoyed. The type of dog shampoo you use also heavily relies on your dog’s skin type which we’ll discuss in detail later.
Depending on your dog’s hair type, we think they may need more or less washes than others:
Our Jug Jeff has a smooth coat which is very oily underneath and doesn’t need hyper regular washes as it’s fairly low maintenance and is easier for him to take care of it himself. If your dog has a smooth coat then a wash every 5-7 weeks would be fine, but no more than 3 months between washes.
A wired coat dog has rough, brush-like hairs which can attract and trap a lot more dirt as the follicles are much denser and more oily. We would recommend bathing a wiry coated dog every 4 weeks and no more than 3 months between washes.
A double coated dog such as an Akita needs to be washed much more regularly than usual due to thick hair which can easily trap dirt raising the chances of bacteria and other infectious problems. If your dog has a double coat (you can google double coated breeds) then we recommend using dog shampoo on them every 3 weeks but no longer than 6 weeks between baths.
If your dog has a long coat such as with a Golden Retriever then they will need regular grooming to keep on top of so much hair and potential smells. Be prepared to have to wash your dog every 2-3 weeks or so depending on just how long the coat is. Mind you, many long haired breeds love the water so perhaps a bath isn’t such a chore with these guys…
A hairless dog breed is actually quite rare to begin with but if you do have one then you’ll be pleased to know they probably don’t need a bath all that often in 3 months – there’s literally no hair to wash!
Are they a puppy, adult or senior dog?
The age of the dog plays an important part in how often you should shampoo a dog.
Puppies have developing skin which isn’t as tough and robust as adult skin – this means it’s easily irritable and prone to become dry and itchy if their fur is washed too regularly.
Adult dogs are at their peak and therefore do not have to worry as much about being washed to regularly – just make sure to consider the other points raised in this section.
Elderly dogs can struggle to keep up with the regular upkeep of their fur and can end up being dirtier, quicker than adult dogs. We recommend washing elderly dogs more often than adults but with gentler dog shampoo that won’t cause any irritation.
A dog who’s is more active will sweat more, get more dirt in their fur and more likely to attract the attention of unwanted critters such as fleas, mites and ticks. This means that dogs who are more active will need to be washed with dog shampoo more often – perhaps even with specialist flea/tick shampoo to keep them at bay.
Dogs used to more of a home life may not need to be washed that often but they can still get dirty at home just like we can!
This point is quite similar to activity levels in so much that if you live in rural area which gets wet and muddy or perhaps further up north where rain is more common then naturally your dog will get diriter more often and need more washes with dog shampoos.
Types of dog shampoos
There is not just one type of dog shampoo that will suit any old dog. Here are the different types which you can read about to determine which one is best for you.
Normal/general purpose dog shampoo is your absolutely basic, often budget, dog shampoo that doesn’t really have any extra benefits other than to clean and make your dog smell nicer.
If you’ve got a dog with sensitive skin or are prone to allergies then you will need to get hypoallergenic shampoo. This is the same sort of principle as those who need to eat hypoallergenic foods. Dogs who are allergic to one thing tend to be allergic to other things. It’s not always the case but it is common from what we have gathered from visitors of Jug Dog.
We had only recently completed our recommendations on the best flea treatment before we wrote this buyer’s guide for the best dog shampoo so we know a thing or two on dog shampoos designed to treat or prevent (or both) fleas. However, it’s worth noting that your dog doesn’t have to have an actual flea infestation for it to be worth getting dog shampoo with anti-flea qualities. Be ready for a shampoo that may not be the nicest smelling or the cheapest available though.
Puppy skin and fur are a little more sensitive than normal so puppy shampoo should always be purchased to wash a puppy. No exceptions!
Related: Puppy Toys
If hypoallergenic shampoo isn’t enough and you are aware of a serious skin condition then medicated shampoo will be needed to wash. Medicated shampoo is generally quite rate so chances are you’ve got this stuff from your vet. Do not give your dog medicated shampoo without veterinarian approval!
For show dogs or dogs with jet black/pearl white then there exists colour shampoo which brings out their natural colour after a wash. It’s a bit niche, a little expensive but for some owners its a good product to have before a show or a nice day out where they won’t get dirty.
Think of it as the same sort of shampoo many women buy which brings out their natureal colour.
What to look for in a good dog shampoo
Not all dog shampoos are created equal! And not all shampoos will be right for your dog. When we received our numerous dog shampoos to test we came together to find certain criteria which we could score the shampoo in an effort to find common ground and aspect in which we could compare products with each other to find the superior brands which we would then recommend to yourselves as the best dog shampoos in the opinion of the JugDog team.
The right type
Be sure to read our section on the types of dog shampoos available and pick the right ones for your dog. Then make check the ingredients closely to make sure it will work for your dog. You can’t really score this feature but it is definitely the first thing you need to check out before committing to purchase and then applying to your dog’s fur.
Whether or not it has great, genuinely reviews online is something we use to score any product reviews, not just dog shampoos. If you buy a product which has been well received by a load of people then it does, of course, improve the chances that it will end up being a good product. It’s just common sense.
However, this doesn’t mean that a product with fewer reviews are bad products but you’ve got to take it into consideration before pulling the trigger on that buy now button.
Return on investment
This is a difficult one to gauge but in our opinion, it relates to the relative cost of the product you want to buy against others which offer the same or similar performance. The most expensive product doesn’t necessarily mean the best product just as much as the cheapest product doesn’t mean the best investment. When thinking of buying your dog shampoo consider the price and if it’s fair when compared to its competitors.
Does the dog shampoo have a nice fragrance after the wash that DOESN’T contain the harsh chemicals listed down below?
Doesn’t use bad chemicals
We don’t want dog shampoos to have any bad stuff which could cause skin dryness, irritation, inflammation and even hair loss. It’s for this reason we recommending as many artificial colours and fragrances, alcohols, detergents, animal and petroleum by-products as caninely possible. Using any dog shampoo in the first place isn’t ‘natural’ so by using a shampoo that uses only natural products then you’re much more likely to have a problem free pooch afterwards and avoid a lot of the issues we’ve mentioned on this page.
How to use dog shampoos
We’ve discussed dog shampoos at length but how does one go about washing their dog with them? Here we’ve added a brief guide on how to wash a dog.
Get them tired
We always say that a tired dog is a good dog and this is definitely true when attempting to give them a bath. Take your dog out for a big walk or have some play time with some toys before taking for a bath so that they are a bit calmer and have less energy to wriggle about in the bath/shower.
Brush them down
Brush your dog down to make it smoother and get rid of any loose debris before you wash them. This can be done fairly easily and quickly for those with shorter hair – for those with long hair that malts this step saves you an awful lot of time washing hair which is dead or just about to fall off meaning you can use less water and shampoo.
Get all of your products ready
Fail to prepare, prepare to fail! If this is your dog’s first ever bath then they may be overly excited and very wriggly – you want to be able to get this bath over quickly and without hassle so save yourself some time by having everything you need to bathe your dog already out and within reach. You don’t want to spend all of your efforts trying to get a calm dog only to have to leave the room to get a towel leaving a dog to their own devices. Some items we recommend are:
- Shampoo and Conditioner
- Nail clippers if you’re going to do more than washing
- Hair Comb / brush
Check the water temperature is right
An easy one to overlook. Check the water temperature just like you would when running a baby’s bath before putting the dog under the hose. You want it warm, tepid almost, but definitely not hot as dogs don’t like either the hot or the cold despite what people may thing.
Keep them calm
The goal of the first bath is to set the precedent ahead of all future baths/showers so keeping them calm will help them enjoy it and make it much easier to give them future baths. A couple of hints are to make sure that you yourself are calm and that you’re speaking to them or distracting them as the water gets there. Keep them calm and happy and they’ll eventually realise that there’s nothing to worry about here and that they’re safe in your hands.
Rinse them down
Now let’s get down to business! To begin the actual washing, rinse them down with just water and run your fingers through the fur to make sure that all of the fur is wet. This is to make sure that when the shampoo is applied that it will attached and lather up properly. Every tried putting wet shampoo on dry hair? It’s not good! Avoid getting the water on the face, ears and eyes as these areas don’t need to be washed as they can cause irritation and probably cause the dog distress.
Apply the shampoo gently and wash them
Once the dog is nice and wet it’s time to apply the shampoo and gently massaging it deep into the fur evenly over the body. Remember to not get it into their eyes, ears and head. Treat their fur like you would your own hair for the best finish.
We would advise scratching them where they like while washing them to make it feel like a pamper sesh to be enjoyed. If you have separate dog conditioner then you’ll need to rinse them, add the conditioner and then rinse them again. If it’s all in one like most of them are then skip to the next step.
Rinse them thoroughly
Once you’re happy with your work it’s time to rinse them thoroughly before you can even think about drying them. We don’t want any shampoo residue left over which can cause problems later on. We recommend using a shower head or a hose to rinse as a bucket may not work evenly and will take a long time. Keep your dog calm here as the end is nigh!
Dry them properly
Leaving a dog to naturally air dry will give you a wet, smelly house believe us so when bath time is over whip out the towel and rigorously dry them off. You’ll never get dogs to be bone dry like we can after a bath but just make sure they aren’t dripping running out the house. After that, just keep them off your sofa and bed so they don’t spread their dog smells.
If budget allows, try putting their bed next to a heater which is turned on for a rapid dry!
NOTE: Do NOT run a hair dryer over a dog as it can burn them quickly!
Give them treats
This point is one to consider throughout the process. Give your dog treats throughout when they are displaying desirable behaviour. If you’ve been keen on the dog training throughout their lives then they will associate the treats with having a good time and pleasing their owners.
Do it again!
Last but not least it’s important that if you’ve had a bath time be it good or bad to make sure you do it all over again so that it becomes a normal part of their routine.
Last update on 2019-05-22 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API