Is Baby Shampoo Safe For Dogs? Read This Helpful Advice!

You come back from work and notice a stinky scent around the house.
Ewww. It’s Rover!

You decide it’s time to give him a bath but to your surprise, there’s no more doggy shampoo.

You turn around and find a baby shampoo in the cabinet.
And then you wonder: 
- Is it ok if I use baby shampoo on Rover? If I do, will he lose hair?

You head over to Google and find this blog post…
… You’re at the right place!

In this post you will learn:
●Is Baby shampoo safe for my dog?
●What is skin pH is and why it is important.
●What the different types of shampoo are. 
●How to choose the best shampoo for your dog.
●How to bathe your dog properly.
●A homemade dog shampoo recipe. 
●And more.

So keep reading!

Can I Use Baby Shampoo on My Dog?

This depends on your dog and the type of baby shampoo.

According to Dr. Cary WaterHouse (Lake Union Veterinary Clinic), you can safely use baby shampoo on your dog as long as it is unscented and gentle and the frequency you bathe your dog is crucial here.

It is recommended that you bathe your dog only about once a month. Also, choose a brand that doesn’t contain dyes or fragrances.

To Keep in Mind 
●If you do wash your dog more than once a month make sure to use a dog shampoo.
●If your dog needs special attention due to fleas, ticks or any skin condition it is best to use an appropriate shampoo. 
Always consult with your vet when in doubt.
●Read all the ingredients and make sure your dog is not allergic to any of them.

Why Is It Ok To Shower Your Dog With Baby Shampoo?

Baby shampoos are designed for sensitive skin and they are milder than most adult shampoos.
They also don’t have harmful chemicals and fragrances.
Although baby shampoos can be used safely on dogs, avoid adult shampoo at all costs.

Here’s why …

Understanding Human VS Dog pH

There’s something called acid mantle. It serves as a layer covering and protecting the skin from bacteria and viruses.

Our skin has a natural ability to fight infections and stresses from the environment and it’s the pH balance that will influence the ability to do so.
The pH has a scale ranging from 0 to 14 and determines how acid or alkaline it is.The normal range for humans is 5.2 to 6.2, leaning more towards the acid side, therefore human shampoos are created to keep this balance.

When the pH is unbalanced it can cause many health problems.

On the other hand, the normal range for a dog’s pH is in the 5.5 to 7.5 range. This depends on the breed, gender, climate and size of the dog.

Unlike the normal pH balance for humans which is more on the acid side, the dog’s normal scale balance leans more towards the alkaline side.

Therefore when dog owners use a human shampoo on a dog, the dog’s acid mantle is disrupted, making it easy for bacteria, parasites, and viruses to infect them.

So, the more you wash your dog with human shampoo the more imbalanced your dog’s pH levels will be.

“All grooming products (human and animal) are designed to maximize cleaning and minimize irritation. Human products work best on human skin and veterinary products are designed to work best on dog skin. The chemistry of a dog’s skin and fur are different than the chemistry of a human’s skin and hair.” – Dr. Terese DeManuelle, vet dermatologist at VetMed.

Baby Shampoo Safe for Dogs

What to consider when Choosing the Best Shampoo For Your Dog

It can be overwhelming when you walk into a pet store and find yourself staring at a shelf full of different types of shampoo.

Don’t worry, though. After you’ve read this section, next time you’ll walk into a pet store you’ll have the necessary knowledge to choose wisely.

Every dog is unique and has different grooming needs. Choosing the right shampoo for your dog will depend on a few factors :
●Your dog’s age 
●His coat 
●His health

The following tips will help you determine the best shampoo for your pooch.

Your Dog’s Age

If your dog is still a puppy then buy a shampoo made for puppies. Puppy shampoos are gentler on the skin and are usually tear-free.

Your Dog’s Coat

Does your dog have a white coat or a dark one? 
There are different types of shampoos made for different coat colors, giving shine and providing vitamins.

Your Dog’s Health

If your dog has any problems with fleas and ticks or has any other skin condition, you should talk to the Vet. He might prescribe a medicated shampoo.

Now that you know the 3 pillars to take into consideration, let’s learn about the different types of shampoo on the market …

Types of Shampoos

For every type of dog, there is a type of Shampoo. Here are a few of them:


This one is for those dogs with sensitive skin. If your dog gets skin irritation or allergies, this is a good option since it is a mild shampoo.

Hypoallergenic shampoos don’t have soap in their composition. It leaves out the alcohol and the other harsh chemicals often found in normal shampoos.

Instead of using substances your dog might be allergic to, it uses natural and organic solutions to obtain the same result as the normal shampoo, but without the side effects.

For example, conventional shampoos that are used for whitening or brightening your dog’s coat have dyes in them and some dogs might have an allergic reaction.

The solution would be a hypoallergenic version which uses natural ingredients.

Hypoallergenic: Is a term used to describe a dog with an allergy to some substance.

Flea Shampoo

If you find your dog scratching all the time. Run a test immediately. 
Grab a comb and pass it through your dog’s coat and watch for any fleas, flea eggs or flea dirt.

If this is the case, you can buy a flea shampoo. 
But keep in mind that a flea shampoo only kills the fleas. It doesn’t prevent dogs from getting infested in the future.

Medicated Shampoo

If your dog gets any skin condition your vet might prescribe him a medicated shampoo. 
Medicated shampoos should only be used in dogs with skin problems.
They are effective and usually shows its effects in just a few washes.

Aloe Vera Shampoo

Aloe vera is commonly used in human beauty products. There are many types of aloe but only about three is used for commercial purposes.

When used externally it can have many benefits for your dog’s health and that’s why Aloe Vera shampoos were created for dogs.

Here are the mains benefits:
●It’s been proven to have anti-inflammatory, antifungal and antibacterial properties. 
●It can reduce inflammation, help with the healing process and alleviate allergic reactions.
●According to Dr. Shawn Messonnier in his book The Natural Vets Guide to Preventing and Treating Cancer in Dogs, an immune stimulant called Acemannan, found in the Aloe plant has been shown effective with skin infections, allergies, and other diseases.

Important Tips
:●Give preference to all natural shampoos or with natural ingredients such as honey, vitamin E, and oatmeal.
●Avoid scented shampoos as they often contain harmful substances.
●Flea and tick shampoos are only a short-term solution. It’s best when you use them together with other preventative methods.

An Alternative to Baby Shampoo

You might have decided to go for a baby shampoo because dog shampoos are usually expensive.

But there is still a cheaper option you can try, and you probably already have the ingredients in your kitchen.

Here’s the recipe for your homemade dog shampoo.

You will need: 
●2 cups of warm water
●1/4 cup of dish soap
●1/2 cup of white vinegar

How to Use:
1.First mix up the dish soap and the white vinegar in a spray bottle. 
2.Start by making your dog’s coat wet with some warm water, then spray the shampoo on his coat. Be very careful with the eyes though. 
3.Massage him thoroughly. Rinse him, dry him off and now you can enjoy a nice walk together.

The benefits of this homemade dog shampoo:

1.You already have the ingredients
2.You save money 
3.White vinegar has deodorant and antibacterial properties and leaves the coat shiny and beautiful.
4.Dish detergent washes away the dirt that accumulate on your dog’s skin.

Up until now you’ve learned about using baby shampoo on your dog, our normal pH levels compared to our dog’s, and tips for choosing the right shampoo. Now it’s time to learn how to properly bathe your dog.

Whether you’re using a Johnson’s baby shampoo or a dog shampoo, the following tips will apply.

Baby Shampoo On Dog

Dog Bathing Best Practices

1.First, start by choosing your method.
When it comes to bathing your dog you have many options. You can use a hose, a spray, or even a cup or a container.
When it comes to the location you can use your backyard, the laundry room or your bathtub.

Tip: Place a towel at the bottom of the bathtub so your dog can feel secure. Bathtub bottoms are slippery. 

2. Start by spraying some warm (not hot) water on his coat. And use a damp cloth to wipe his face.

3. Be careful with the ears. Gently place cotton balls into his ears to prevent the water from getting in. Water in the ear, besides being very uncomfortable might cause some serious problems.

Some dogs, however, are very hyper and will not let you use cotton balls in their ears. In this case, try to avoid water in his ears as much as possible.

4. Use the appropriate shampoo. Whether it is a baby shampoo or if you decide to use a dog shampoo make sure to read all the ingredients on the label.If your dog has an allergy to any of the ingredients don’t use it at all.

5. After giving your dog a nice massage, it’s time to dry him off. You can use a towel or a blow dryer. If you use a blow dryer be careful because most dogs find the loud noise frightening.

Slowly introduce your dog to the blow dryer and try to build a positive association by giving treats and praising him.

6. Now you can enjoy a wonderful walk with your dog. Have fun !!!

An example of a good baby shampoo is the Johnson’s Bedtime Baby Bath which is free of dye, is no-tear and has calming essences.

Another option is the Aveeno Baby Wash and Shampoo because of the following features: ●Tear-free 
●Designed for baby’s sensitive skin 
●No toxins, dye, drying alcohol or any other harsh chemicals.

How Often Should I Bathe My Dog?

Most vets recommend you to bathe your dog once a month unless he has a skin condition.

If you decide to bathe your dog more than once a week then make sure to use a soap-free shampoo or a moisturizing shampoo to prevent his skin from getting dry.

Do not bathe your dog more than once a week, though.

What About the Conditioner?

The shampoo takes care of the unwanted grime in the dog’s coat and skin.

When you only shampoo your dog and don’t use a conditioner afterwards, his hair cuticle will stay open making the hydration escape and entering residues easily.

The conditioner closes the cuticle, moisturizes and restores the hydration.

So, if you want your best friend’s coat to look healthy and hydrated use a conditioner and as with the shampoo, don’t use a human conditioner.


Choosing the right shampoo for your dog or puppy can be a daunting task.

Sometimes we have to save money on expensive dog shampoos and just use a baby shampoo, and sometimes even make a homemade version instead.

Now you have a quick guide to everything you need to safely and responsibly bathe your dog.

For quick reference, here is a quick summary: 
●It’s ok to use baby shampoo on a dog as long as it’s gentle and free of dye and fragrances. 
●Our skin pH levels are different than our dog’s. That’s why-why you should avoid at all costs using an adult human shampoo.
●There are different types of dog shampoos, each one with a different purpose. From Aloe Vera to medicated shampoo.
●You can create a homemade dog shampoo with just 3 ingredients you have in your kitchen.
●When choosing a shampoo, take into consideration your dog’s coat, health, and age.

Have you used a baby shampoo on your dog before?

Did you like the result or you just used it because you didn’t have a dog shampoo around?

Feel free to answer down below and share this post with your friends so that you can spread information.

Thanks for reading!

Reference:Reviews Worthy – Best Medicated Dog Shampoos Brands & Their BenefitsPetMD – Can You Use Human Shampoo on Dogs? Maintaining Your Dog’s Skin pH

AKC – Easy, Natural Homemade Dog Shampoo

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