Is it Safe to Use Human Shampoo on your Dog?

No dog shampoo? What can you use? Guest author Anna Sakila explains why you should never use human shampoo on your canine and how to go about washing him/her the right way! 

QDT Editor
3-minute read

Using human shampoo on your dog is something you should never do. Doing so puts your dog’s health at an extreme risk, so it's important to educate yourself on the alternatives to using human shampoo on your dog.

It’s not always practical to use a hose on your dog after months of not being bathed. Those who live in apartments or do not have access to a backyard and/or a garden hose will know this predicament all too well.

Therefore, your only option is to stick your dog into the bathtub or shower, whichever you have, but then there is the issue to which kind of soap to use. A bar, your shampoo? The answer to the question on when you can use shampoo on your dog is a very simple one - never.

Their pH Balance Will Be Ruined

The first reason as to why human shampoo should never be used on your dog is the biggest reason of them all. Human shampoo disrupts the delicate pH balance of a dog’s skin, which must be kept intact at all times.

Human shampoo is much too acidic for a dog’s skin, which will dehydrate it and cause it to be more susceptible to bacteria, parasites, you name it. Dogs require a shampoo that is specifically designed with their skin in mind, one that much have the proper concentration of alkaline.

Alkaline, at the very least, helps to keep a dog’s skin more hydrated. It helps to retain the moisture that their skin desperately needs.

Their Skin is Far Too Sensitive

Human shampoos are much too harsh on a dog’s coat and skin. This is also the case for certain human skin types, as well. However, when used on a dog, human shampoo does double the damage.

The chemicals and the fragrances that are used in human shampoo negate a dog’s natural ability to maintain a healthy, shiny coat. Though your dog will smell much nicer than they did before, their coat will become greatly damaged.

The chemicals and the fragrances that are used in human shampoo negate a dog’s natural ability to maintain a healthy, shiny coat.

Though most owners will not notice the damage, unless the use of human shampoo goes on for a long period of time, your dog definitely will. They will become uncomfortable and their coat will turn stringy and dull.

Their Natural Protections Are Stripped

Your dog has oils and other forms of natural protections embedded into their coat. When you use human shampoo on them, however, you strip their coat of these delicate protection methods.

These natural protections are needed for a healthy coat and to fight off parasites and bacteria. Like the pH balance, if their oils are stripped from the coat, they are more susceptible to all types of parasites and bacteria that have no business being on them.

Keep reading for the ultimate solution and suggestions.