Last Updated: March 01, 2021

Best Dog Shampoo for Dry Skin

Best Dog Shampoo for Dry Skin

Soothing your dog’s itchy skin is easy when you choose the right shampoo. Dry skin shampoos can help relieve your dog’s symptoms and prevent further discomfort. Our favorite dog shampoo for dry skin is 4-Legger’s Organic Aloe Shampoo.

Here are some of the best shampoos you can buy right now to help your dog’s dry skin.

Best Products Best Dog Shampoo for Dry Skin

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Best Overall
4-Legger Organic Aloe Shampoo
4-Legger Organic Aloe Shampoo Best Overall
$15
Review manufacturer amazon
on amazon
8/10
  • What we Like
  • Made with natural ingredients and essential oils
  • Uses soothing aloe and other oils to keep your dog’s skin moisturized
  • What we Dislike
  • Dogs may have allergies to certain natural ingredients
  • No medicated solution for dry skin
Product Details
Size 16oz
Moisturizer Aloe
Scent Lemongrass
Medicated

Our Review

For holistic pet owners, it doesn’t get much better than this Organic Aloe Shampoo by 4-Legger. This company is well-known for its natural remedies, and this shampoo is a shining star in their lineup. Using coconut oil, aloe, and other natural moisturizers, it works to keep your dog’s skin properly moisturized so they don’t have as much dandruff.

However, this is not a medicated solution. Some shampoos contain special moisturizing medications for extreme cases, but this isn’t one of them. The lemongrass scent is light and pleasant and most dogs will enjoy it. It’s a concentrated shampoo as well, so a little goes a long way with this product! With 16 ounces, you’re sure to have plenty for many more soothing bathtimes!

K9 Pro Oatmeal Dog Shampoo and Conditioner
K9 Pro Oatmeal Dog Shampoo and Conditioner
$0
Review manufacturer amazon
on amazon
6/10
  • What we Like
  • Fresh cucumber melon scent created with essences and extracts
  • No detergents or harsh chemicals
  • What we Dislike
  • Some dogs may have drier skin after use
  • Not tear-free as advertised
Product Details
Size 16oz
Moisturizer Oatmeal and aloe
Scent Cucumber Melon
Medicated

Our Review

K9 Pro makes this oatmeal, aloe, and cucumber dog shampoo with a ton of different essential oil, extracts, and natural ingredients. The cucumber melon scent isn’t created with artificial perfumes, but rather with cucumber essence and melon extracts. This makes it better for your dog’s skin and perfect for dogs that are allergic to perfumes.

This shampoo also contains a unique, proprietary technology that uses liposome particles to help medications penetrate down to your dog’s skin. This helps ensure that the treatment you’re giving your dog gets where it needs to go. With oatmeal, aloe, and a deep penetrating formula, K9 Pro’s Oatmeal Dog Shampoo and Conditioner can help your dog get more comfortable!

Burt’s Bees Hypoallergenic Dog Shampoo
Burt’s Bees Hypoallergenic Dog Shampoo
$7
Review manufacturer amazon
on amazon
5/10
  • What we Like
  • 99.7% natural ingredients
  • Packed with natural moisturizers like shea butter
  • What we Dislike
  • The thin, watery mixture
  • The scent doesn’t last long
Product Details
Size 16oz
Moisturizer Shea butter and honey
Scent Natural
Medicated

Our Review

Burt’s Bees makes natural beeswax products for you, and now they do the same for your dog! This hypoallergenic shampoo contains 99.7% natural ingredients to help resolve your dog’s dry skin issues without using harsh chemicals or strong medications that may end up damaging your dog’s coat.

Because of the way that it is made, this shampoo is thin and doesn’t lather up much. That’s because it contains no soap products. It’s still working! It’s a mild formula that won’t irritate your dog’s skin or eyes and doesn’t contain any fragrances, sulfates, or colorants. If you’re looking for a natural, gentle shampoo to soften your dog’s coat and moisturize her skin, this is a great choice.

Pro Pet Works Oatmeal Dog Shampoo
Pro Pet Works Oatmeal Dog Shampoo
$14
Review manufacturer amazon
on amazon
7/10
  • What we Like
  • Works on cats and dogs
  • Natural ingredients with no alcohol, sulfates, colors, fragrance, or harsh chemicals
  • What we Dislike
  • The smell may be too strong for some owners
Product Details
Size 17oz
Moisturizer Oatmeal and aloe
Scent Natural almond fragrance
Medicated

Our Review

When your dog has dry, itching skin or other sensitive skin issues, Pro Pet Works can help. Their oatmeal shampoo is specifically formulated to help dogs that are sensitive to harsh chemicals, soaps, and detergents. This shampoo contains none of those things but opts for natural ingredients like almond oil, oatmeal, and organic aloe. It’s pH-balanced to reduce irritation on your dog’s skin as well!

The natural smell comes from the ingredients, not from any perfumes or fragrances. This scent was very strong right out of the bottle but it fades fairly quickly, leaving your dog smelling clean but not overwhelming. This shampoo is paraben and cruelty free and avoids most of the ingredients that most dogs have reactions to. Gentle moisture is the way to go with Pro Pet Works.

TropiClean Oatmeal & Tea Tree Shampoo
TropiClean Oatmeal & Tea Tree Shampoo
$11
Review manufacturer amazon
on amazon
8/10
  • What we Like
  • Medicated with beta hydroxy
  • Naturally-derived and plant-based ingredients
  • What we Dislike
  • May not work on some instances of itchy skin
Product Details
Size 20oz
Moisturizer Oatmeal and tea tree oil
Scent Coconut
Medicated

Our Review

TropiClean’s Oatmeal & Tea Tree Shampoo smells great and can help relieve your dog’s dry skin quickly! This is a medicated shampoo that uses beta hydroxy along with a host of natural ingredients to help keep your dog moisturized and itch-free. Dandruff’s got nothing on this natural shampoo! It’s soap-free, paraben-free, and dye-free, so it doesn’t contain a lot of the harsh chemicals that some other medicated shampoos do.

It takes a natural formula a step further for dogs and cats because it also contains a medication to help with dry and itchy skin. The raw materials and minerals used in this shampoo elevate it to the next level for all of your pets. Plus, the scent is pleasant and lingers for a while after use, so your pup always smells fresh.

Mighty Pets 2-in-1 Oatmeal Shampoo
Mighty Pets 2-in-1 Oatmeal Shampoo
$17
Review manufacturer amazon
on amazon
6/10
  • What we Like
  • Cleans and conditions
  • Alcohol, paraben, color, and cruelty free
  • What we Dislike
  • Expensive
  • Thin, watery consistency
Product Details
Size 16oz
Moisturizer Oatmeal and aloe
Scent Lavender
Medicated

Our Review

This oatmeal shampoo from Mighty Pets works as both a shampoo and conditioner, cleaning your dog’s coat and leaving them pleasantly moisturized to treat and avoid dry skin. This is a natural shampoo, with gentle, pH-balanced ingredients. The formula is thin, but it uses oatmeal extracts and aloe vera to keep your dog’s skin and coat properly moisturized.

There are a host of other natural ingredients in this formula, and all of the work together to keep your dog feeling great and to stop itching. Soothing aloe and vitamin A, C, E, and B work to restore skin and help retain moisture even after an outbreak of dry skin. There is no alcohol here, so your dog’s skin won’t become more irritated with use.

Paws & Pals Natural Dog Shampoo
Paws & Pals Natural Dog Shampoo
$0
Review manufacturer amazon
on amazon
4/10
  • What we Like
  • Moisturizes with nourishing ingredients that are good for your dog
  • Great scent
  • What we Dislike
  • Extremely small bottle
  • Red-colored product may temporarily dye the dog’s coat
Product Details
Size 3oz
Moisturizer Oatmeal and aloe
Scent Oatmeal
Medicated

Our Review

If you are thinking of ordering this shampoo, be sure to read the fine print. While it works wonders and helps a variety of skin conditions, it is a very small bottle. For the price, you only get 3 ounces of product – which may not be enough to wash a larger dog. However, you may find that the results are worth it.

Essential oils, natural ingredients, and soaps are used together in this shampoo to create a great-smelling shampoo that can work to relieve dandruff, itching, and dry skin that causes them. Pro-Vitamin B helps to protect your dog’s skin, forming a protective barrier and allowing the oatmeal and aloe to do their work to help with the problem. If your dog is white, the bright red formula may temporarily dye their coat, so be aware of that. Otherwise, it works a treat on most dogs.

Frisco Oatmeal Shampoo with Organic Aloe
Frisco Oatmeal Shampoo with Organic Aloe
$8
Review manufacturer chewy
on chewy
8/10
  • What we Like
  • Great quality for the price
  • Light scent that won’t linger, but leaves your dog feeling clean
  • What we Dislike
  • Doesn’t lather well
  • Takes a lot of shampoos to clean well
Product Details
Size 20oz
Moisturizer Oatmeal & Aloe
Scent Almond
Medicated

Our Review

Frisco’s Oatmeal Shampoo with Organic Aloe helps to reduce dry skin and keep your dog from itching at loose dandruff – but that isn’t all. It also has just a slight almond and oatmeal scent that won’t linger, leaving your dog feeling clean but not overly perfumed. Gentle ingredients help avoid skin and eye irritation. The formula is pH balanced for your dog’s comfort.

If you have multiple pets in your household, this is a great choice as well. This shampoo can be used on dogs and cats, making it perfect for your feline friends that also suffer from dry skin. Unfortunately, the low lather point may mean you use a lot of this shampoo. You can purchase a 1-gallon bottle to reduce the need to reorder this shampoo often.

Earthbath Totally Natural Pet Shampoo
Earthbath Totally Natural Pet Shampoo
$16
Review manufacturer amazon
on amazon
4/10
  • What we Like
  • All-natural formula
  • What we Dislike
  • Not for dogs with sensitive skin
  • Eucalyptus smell may be overwhelmingly medicinal
Product Details
Size 16oz
Moisturizer Peppermint
Scent Eucalyptus and peppermint
Medicated

Our Review

Earthbath’s Natural Pet Shampoo can work well – but only if your dog doesn’t have particularly sensitive skin. Dogs with sensitive skin might develop a reaction to the different essential oils in this formula. However, a larger variety of dogs can benefit from this natural formula – especially dogs with chemical allergies. The eucalyptus scent can be strong, but whether or not it is too medicinal is up to each user.

If it works for your dog, you can expect their coat to be soft, shiny, and easy to brush, even if they are usually prone to tangles. This shampoo is great for detangling your dog’s hair, probably due to the unique blend of natural ingredients. The coconut oils and eucalyptus cool and soothe your dog’s irritated skin, penetrating deep to provide natural moisture to even the driest areas.

Vetoquinol Aloe & Oatmeal Shampoo
Vetoquinol Aloe & Oatmeal Shampoo
$16
Review manufacturer amazon
on amazon
8/10
  • What we Like
  • Best results when used with the matching conditioner
  • Soap, paraben, and silicon-free
  • What we Dislike
  • Contains some chemical cleaning agents
Product Details
Size 16oz
Moisturizer Oatmeal and aloe
Scent Coconut
Medicated

Our Review

Though Vetoquinol’s Aloe and Oatmeal Shampoo isn’t medicated, it’s one of the most effective non-medicated shampoos for dry skin that still contains natural ingredients. Aloe and oatmeal work together to soothe dry skin, add moisture back into your dog’s skin and leave them smelling great at the same time. The coconut scent is not overwhelming but lingers lightly in your dog’s fur to help eliminate that wet dog smell.

You can use this shampoo on cats as well, which is great for cats with tough cases of itchy skin. While there are chemicals in this shampoo, it’s nothing that can harm your cat if they clean themselves. This works well with Vetoquinol’s Aloe & Oatmeal conditioner – using them both together may help keep your dog feeling their best!

Buddy Wash Original Lavender & Mint
Buddy Wash Original Lavender & Mint
$10
Review manufacturer amazon
on amazon
5/10
  • What we Like
  • Botanical moisture with 2-in-1 shampoo and conditioner
  • Three different scents to choose from
  • What we Dislike
  • The soap-free formula may not clean as well
Product Details
Size 16oz
Moisturizer Coconut and aloe
Scent Lavender & Mint
Medicated

Our Review

Buddy Wash’s Original Lavender and Mint Shampoo isn’t formulated specifically for dry skin but contains ingredients like aloe and coconut that can be extremely beneficial. It can also work very well for dogs that have sensitive skin, as there are no harsh chemicals or medications in this formula. This soothing shampoo is made with botanicals and other natural ingredients to help moisturize your dog’s skin.

Buddy Wash is a 2-in-1 formula that cleans and conditions at the same time and comes in three different scents. Lavender & Mint is nice and light, but the others (Rosemary & Mint and Green Tea & Bergamot) may be a little strong for some dogs. Still, the coconut base works to help nourish your dog’s coat and leave your dog soft and moisturized – regardless of what scent you choose!

Veterinary Formula Clinical Care Oatmeal and Tea Tree Shampoo
Veterinary Formula Clinical Care Oatmeal and Tea Tree Shampoo
$9
Review manufacturer amazon
on amazon
6/10
  • What we Like
  • Uses colloidal oatmeal and tea tree oil to moisturize
  • Treats a variety of infections and conditions
  • What we Dislike
  • May dry out longer coats
  • Can cause hair loss in sensitive dogs
Product Details
Size 16oz
Moisturizer Oatmeal and tea tree oil
Scent Oatmeal
Medicated

Our Review

There are a lot of problems that this Clinical Care shampoo can take care of, including dry skin, insect bites, inflammation, bacteria, and fungal infections. It’s a heavy hitter that can help with a variety of skin problems and maybe the saving grace for your dog. There are no harsh chemicals, parabens, dyes, or soaps here. There are no artificial fragrances. You get natural colloidal oatmeal (an excellent moisturizer) and tea tree oil, which helps to soothe your dog’s skin.

Together, these two ingredients can help your dog feel better immediately following the bath. This shampoo can even be used with topical flea and tick treatments, so you don’t have to worry about that. For the price, this is an excellent full-coverage shampoo for dry skin and other issues.

Wahl Dry Skin & Itch Relief Shampoo
Wahl Dry Skin & Itch Relief Shampoo
$7
Review manufacturer amazon
on amazon
7/10
  • What we Like
  • Leaves dogs with soft fur
  • pH balanced, paraben-free, and alcohol-free
  • What we Dislike
  • The scent doesn’t last long
Product Details
Size 24oz
Moisturizer Oatmeal
Scent Coconut lime verbena
Medicated

Our Review

Wahl’s Dry Skin & Itch Relief Shampoo is an effective moisturizer that uses oatmeal as the primary ingredient to heal and soothe your dog’s dry skin issues. If your dog has dandruff or often itches their dry skin to the point of further irritation, this can be a great solution for them. The coconut lime verbena scent won’t last long after a bath but it is pleasant and not too strong, which many users love.

A high concentration of natural coconut cleaners means that a little of this formula goes a long way. All of the ingredients are 100% natural, and the huge 24-ounce bottle size means that you won’t have to reorder too soon. This shampoo lathers up very thickly to provide you and your dog with some much-needed relief.

Vet’s Best Hypoallergenic Shampoo for Dogs
Vet’s Best Hypoallergenic Shampoo for Dogs
$17
Review manufacturer amazon
on amazon
6/10
  • What we Like
  • Only 4 ingredients, perfect for sensitive skin
  • Aloe provides deep moisturization
  • What we Dislike
  • Maybe watery
Product Details
Size 16oz
Moisturizer Aloe and vitamin E
Scent Unscented
Medicated

Our Review

Vet’s Best is a natural shampoo that contains only four ingredients: aloe vera, allantoin, vitamin B5, and vitamin E. Together, these ingredients create a formula that is great for dogs with allergies, without any of the harsh chemicals that may provide further irritation. It’s a gentle shampoo that can help deliver moisture to dry skin without the risk of further inflammation or rash.

There are no parabens, dyes, or sulfates in this shampoo, and there is no added fragrance either. What scent it does have is completely natural and light enough that it won’t bother you or your dog. It’s gentle enough to use often and helps to repair skin and coats with deep moisturization. For a holistic approach, it doesn’t get better than this simple shampoo.

HyLyt Hypoallergenic Shampoo with Natural Fatty Acids
HyLyt Hypoallergenic Shampoo with Natural Fatty Acids
$14
Review manufacturer amazon
on amazon
5/10
  • What we Like
  • Light coconut scent
  • Uses fatty acids to help moisturize and restore dry skin
  • What we Dislike
  • The ingredients list contains several chemicals
Product Details
Size 16oz
Moisturizer Fatty acids
Scent Coconut
Medicated

Our Review

HyLyt’s Hypoallergenic Dog Shampoo isn’t aiming to be completely natural, but it’s important to note that there are quite a few chemicals on the ingredient list that may irritate your dog’s skin. If you can make it past that, this is a great shampoo for treating dry skin. That’s because the formula contains natural fatty acids that can help restore moisture and repair overly dry skin quickly.

The formula is free of soap, which means that there is less of a chance that your dog’s coat and skin will become irritated and dry after use. As a bonus, this shampoo lathers up very nicely and cleans even built-up dirt on your dog’s fur. If you need more than 16 ounces, you can purchase a 1-gallon jug of this shampoo for multiple dogs or kennel use.

Best Products Best Dog Shampoo for Dry Skin
Product Name Best for Rate
4-Legger Organic Aloe Shampoo Best Overall 8

How to Choose a Dog Shampoo for Dry Skin

Your dog’s dry skin can be uncomfortable and disruptive. It can make you feel helpless and cover your dog in itchy dandruff. There are plenty of shampoos that can help with these conditions, though! We’ll take a look at what might cause your dog’s dry skin and what you can do to help!

What Causes Dry, Flaky Skin?

You may think that dry and flaky skin has a simple cause, but that may not be the case. Even when your dog has had issues with dry skin in the past, it’s easy to write it off as an allergy or contact dermatitis problem. The truth is, several conditions may cause dry skin.

Identifying the cause of your dog’s dry skin can help you face the problem. Here are just some of the reasons why your dog is having dry skin issues:

  • Parasites. Although we most often think of fleas in this situation, there are many parasites that you cannot see or diagnose without the help of a vet. Parasites like mites, lice, scabies, or even mange-causing parasites can all leave your dog’s skin dry. If your dog has fleas, they may even be allergic to flea saliva. All of these parasites can cause dry, flaky skin.
  • Infections. Ringworm and other fungal and bacterial infections can cause your dog’s skin to be dry and flaky, causing dandruff, scales, or more. Again, these conditions need to be treated by a vet, as using a moisturizing shampoo isn’t going to help all of the time.
  • Allergies. Allergies (like an allergy to flea saliva, as mentioned earlier) can quickly dry out your dog’s skin and leave them itching. Whether it’s an allergy to a certain type of food, something in your environment, or pollen, dust, and other seasonal allergies – your dog could potentially be allergic to anything. Running an allergy test can identify these issues.
  • Disorders. Cushing’s disease can sometimes present itself with dry skin, brittle hair, skin infections, and more. Hypothyroidism is also a disorder that can cause dry skin. Cancer and auto-immune disorders sometimes present with dry skin as a symptom.
  • Environmental Issues. Your dog’s dry skin may be caused by a change in the weather, especially if they spend a lot of time outside. Cold, dry air is more likely to dry out your dog’s skin. The heater in your home can dry out the air, which can also lead to your dog’s skin drying out. Poor nutrition can also play a part.
  • Excessive Bathing. Bathing your dog too much can be harmful. You may want your dog to smell great all the time, but bathing them too much can dry their skin out. Soaps aren’t great for them when you use them frequently.
  • Breed Issues. Some breeds have skin conditions naturally, without any underlying cause or condition. Check your dog’s breed to see if they are known to have skin conditions before considering other conditions or problems.

What to Look for In a Dog Shampoo for Dry Skin

When you want to help your dog get relief from their dry skin symptoms, here are some of the things you should keep in mind.

Size

How much shampoo are you getting? For certain dry skin conditions, you may have to wash your dog repeatedly to fully get rid of the condition. Your dog’s skin needs to be moisturized over time in some cases. This means you’re going to need more of the shampoo that helps treat dry skin conditions.

Keep an eye on the amount of product you’re getting. Consider the lather point of each shampoo and how much you expect to use in each watch, and make sure that you buy enough to last throughout your dog’s treatment. Keep in mind that some companies do offer bottles of multiple sizes through their websites as well.

Moisturizer

What moisturizer does the shampoo use to help restore and hydrate your dog’s skin? Let’s take a look at some of the most common moisturizers and examine the difference.

  • Oatmeal contains emollient properties. This means that it penetrates through dry skin and acts as a humectant to draw moisture down to where your dog needs it most. Colloidal oatmeal is a version of oatmeal that also acts as a skin protectant. Both are great cleansers, deodorizers, and work well with most other ingredients.
  • Aloe vera is a plant-derived ingredient that works to protect your skin, coating it, and holding moisture inside. When used with a humectant moisturizer that invites moisture, aloe can help hydrate your dog’s skin and protect it from further harm. Be careful when using high concentrations of aloe in a place where your dog can lick it off, as it should not be ingested. This is only a problem if you’re using a gel or cream treatment.
  • Tea tree oil is not inherently moisturizing itself, but it does help soothe irritated skin. If your dog is itching at their dry skin a lot (or their dry skin is producing a lot of dandruff), tea tree oil can help calm that itch. Shampoos containing tea tree oil should not be used on cats, and tea tree oil products shouldn’t be used where cats may consume them. In rare cases, tea tree oil can be toxic to felines.
  • Coconut oil can be used in a wide variety of applications, even in cooking! There is so much coconut oil can do for you and your dog. Shampoos that use coconut oil as a base hydrate more effectively without any harmful side effects. The fatty acid composition of coconut oil helps restore dry and damaged skin and speed recovery efforts.
  • Peppermint is listed on more than one moisturizing shampoo or sprays as a great moisturizer, but many experts disagree. Peppermint can cool the skin (creating an effect that is a lot like aloe vera). However, peppermint can also irritate the skin and create more problems than it solves. Steer clear of peppermint moisturizers unless they contain other moisturizing ingredients.

Other moisturizers are commonly used in shampoos, creams, and more. However, dog shampoos tend to stick with oatmeal and aloe above all others.

Scent

We all want our dogs to smell great, and scented shampoos can help in a variety of ways. They usually get rid of the ‘wet dog’ smell and replace it with something you won’t mind lingering around. Choose a scent that is close to what you already like.

Also, be aware of how the scent makes it into the shampoo. Is it a natural scent that is provided by extracts and oils? These natural fragrances generally don’t irritate your dog’s skin as much as synthetic perfumes. Shampoos with synthetic perfumes can be okay if your dog isn’t particularly sensitive to them. However, if your dog’s skin is already dry and irritated, synthetic perfume may make the problem worse.

Medicated

Medicated shampoos can help get rid of your dog’s dry skin faster in some cases. For the most part, you should only use medicated shampoos that are recommended by your veterinarian. This is especially important if you don’t know the underlying cause of your dog’s dry skin.

You don’t want to subject your dog’s skin to medication that it doesn’t need, whether it’s dry nor not. Above, we discussed some of the reasons your dog’s skin might be dry. Choosing a medicated shampoo that targets the cause of your dog’s dry skin is ideal, but you must know the cause first.

For that reason, hold off on purchasing a shampoo with specific chemicals or medical ingredients until you know that they will be beneficial.

Ingredients

Do you know what’s in your dog’s shampoo? You should take a look, as there may be some chemicals and ingredients that aren’t great for your dog’s skin or general health.

Especially if your dog has a skin condition, taking a look at the ingredients can be a good thing. Check out the back of the bottle and make sure that there are no chemicals that may be causing a reaction. Further, if you know that your dog is allergic to something or has had a reaction to a certain chemical in the past, look for that ingredient in shampoo before you purchase.

Taking the time to check can make your dog’s first bath with a new dry skin shampoo a lot more comfortable.

Soap-free

Soaps are good, right? Don’t we want soap in our shampoo? You’d think so, but the answer is no for most people. Soap can dry out your dog’s skin. Many soaps present in dog shampoos can lead to allergic reactions in some dogs, rashes, or further skin problems in others. If your dog has a problem with soap or has had reactions to multiple other types of dog shampoo, try a soap-free shampoo.

Usually, these shampoos clean with a natural cleanser or cleaning agent that doesn’t contain a drying or harsh soap.

Paraben-free

What does it mean when a shampoo is listed as paraben free? Parabens are chemicals that are added to consumable and personal health products that help preserve them, reducing the buildup and growth of bacteria over time, and more. This may not seem like a bad thing, but they can easily penetrate your dog’s skin barrier and lead to certain developmental and reproductive issues. Parabens may even cause cancer.

If that’s not a risk you’re willing to make for your pup, consider choosing a shampoo that is free of parabens.

Sulfate-free

Sulfates are ingredients in a multitude of soaps. They achieve that soapy lather and help strip oils and dirt out of your hair, off of your skin, and out of your dog’s fur. However, too many sulfates (or in too high a concentration) can also strip away the natural oils you need for healthy skin.

You don’t want sulfates in your dog’s dry-skin shampoo, as it can further damage already fragile skin. If you aren’t willing to take that risk, keep an eye out for sulfates in your shampoo selection.

Target species

What species is the shampoo safe for? This is useful if you are looking for dry skin shampoo that will work for your other pets as well. Most dog-friendly shampoos can work on cats, horses, and even ferrets. However, look out for labels that specifically say that shampoos can be used on multiple different species just to be safe.

Conditions treated

Most dry skin shampoos for dogs treat other conditions as well. Some have flea and tick deterrents, some can be used as an antifungal treatment, and more. The thing to remember is this: more uses are not always a good thing.

For example, would you buy an antifungal shampoo if you knew your dog didn’t have a fungal infection? Probably not, unless you were trying to prevent them from occurring. Some treatments for these conditions have harsh chemicals or medications.

A good rule of thumb is to purchase just what your dog needs and not more. If you only have dry skin, look for dry skin or anti-itch shampoo that doesn’t bother with other conditions. If your dog has a skin condition or infection, it’s going to be fine to use a shampoo that covers both that condition and dry skin.