Dry Shampoo for Dogs


You have invited your close friends for an intimate dinner date. They are due to arrive in about 30 minutes from now. Almost everything is set, dinner is in the oven, the living room is clean, the table is set, but while you are straightening the cushions on your couch, the smell hits… your dog. Time is of the essence, it is best to think fast. Quickly! spray on the dry dog shampoo that you bought exactly for these reasons. No mess and fuss, no water required.

But the question is, are you sure this is good for your dog?

Dry Shampoo for Dogs
Dry Shampoo for Dogs

Dry Shampoo for Dogs

Just like us, fur parents, hygiene is extremely important for your dogs. Bathing your dog can be a whole ordeal, especially if your pet hates getting wet or being scrubbed with water. Some dogs can leap with joy hearing the sound of water for their bathtime while some will literally run for the hills just to avoid baths.

Washing your dog is a struggle, that’s okay. Lots of fur parents can relate. While we may not recommend forever postponing that stinky fur baby a good scrub, there are instances when dry shampoos for dogs are extremely handy.

Here are some answers to the questions you might have about dry shampoo for your dog:

Is Dry Shampoo Good for Dogs?

Dry shampoo for dogs. Does it even work? Well, it’s both yes and no.

Dry shampoo for dogs works because it is made of starch powders and clay that absorbs the excess oil, sebum, from your dog’s fur and skin. Note that sebum is an oily substance that helps keep the skin healthy, shiny, and well moisturized. This also contains a natural antibiotic property that serves as the first line of defense against any bacteria buildup. Sebum gives your dog that “distinct scent” that you may or may not have noticed. This scent helps other dogs remember them. So, it is safe to say that dry shampoo does help by absorbing excess oil buildup.

However, among other things, too much of one thing can not be good. Dry shampoo, when you apply too much, will not only absorb excess oil buildup but will affect the natural antibacterial barrier that we mentioned earlier as well. We all know that only water and soap can effectively remove dirt and pollutants accumulated on your pet’s fur and skin.

In conclusion, dry shampoo is good for dogs, but only for an occasional quick fix. This should not be treated as a replacement for soap and water.

Reasons Your Dog Might Suit A Dry Shampoo Experience

  1. Elderly Dogs. It can be hard for elderly dogs to stand for too long, so taking a bath can be painful, especially for dogs with medical conditions.
  2. Incontinence. A dog that is suffering from incontinence can have really stinky urine, especially when it sits on the fur for too long. Rather than having to always give them a shower whenever an oops moment happens, a quick spritz of dry shampoo can be so much quicker, easier, and less hassle.
  3. Naturally stinky. Some dogs get stinkier than others. Maybe he produces too much sebum or maybe he is just an active dog that needs extra attention in the grooming aspect, a dry shampoo can be your best friend.
  4. Playdates. You put two active dogs together on a playdate, expect that you will leave with a stinky dog with you.
  5. Post-surgical. Some dogs that underwent surgery may have stitches that cannot be wet. So, dry shampoo to the rescue it is!

What Kind of Dry Shampoo Can I Use on My Dog?

While we have discussed that dry shampoo is safe for dogs, not all of the ones available in the market are. Many dry shampoos contain ingredients that are harmful, like DMDM Hydantoin, preservatives, artificial fragrance, and FD&C Blue #1, all linked to causing cancer. There are even ingredients that might sound safe and organic but is actually not a good ingredient for your dog’s skin and fur.

So, as a pup parent, it is your responsibility to check what you use on your furry friend. You must be cautious when choosing the products you put into your dog’s regime. Your best bet? Stick with natural, safe, and organic ingredients.

Here are easy-to-spot red flags that you should avoid:

  1. Ingredients are not disclosed in the packaging. While this can sometimes be done to protect their exact ingredients to avoid replication, this can be taken as an advantage and use to hide ingredients that might not be the best for your four-legged friend.
  2. “Surfactants” that do not have proper names. A safe surfactant will be listed by name and will not be listed as chemical composition.
  3. Pore clogging ingredients. Powders and foams can stick into your furry friend’s skin and fur and clog the pores. This will do more harm than good.
  4. Fragrance. Artificial fragrance can be linked to cancer. Unlike essential oils that can be extremely benefiting for the skin as well as helping them smell good, artificial fragrance can be harmful.

It is best to understand how dry shampoo works so that you avoid getting scammed into purchasing something that does not even work.

Dry shampoos are safe powders that should be used in moderation to absorb excess oils.

Dry shampoos can not absorb or repel grime and dirt, get rid of grease, mask sweat, and clean your dog. The most effective way (the only way) you can clean your dog is through washing them with soap and water.

How Do You Wash A Dog with Dry Shampoo?

Now that you know that dog shampoo for dogs can be safe when used in moderation and how to choose the best kind of dry shampoo, you must learn how to use it so that it really works.

Dry shampoo can be a timesaver and the quickest way to freshen up your dog. Here is everything you need to know to make sure you get the most out of this.

Materials Needed

Step-by-step Instructions

  1. Start by removing loose dead hair using your de-shedding brush. Notice that your dog will instantly smell better because that loose dead hair holds body odor well. By brushing your dog to remove the loose hair, you also get to see where your dog needs dry shampoo. Make sure you go over your pet’s whole coat to remove as much loose fur as you can.
  2. Trim any hair that comes into contact with the ground. We all know that the ground has so much odor-causing bacteria and dirt.
  3. Use a good quality dry shampoo for your dog or a shampoo that has as many natural ingredients as possible. There are so many products available in the market, but not all are guaranteed to have the best quality ingredients. Like with our dry shampoo products, others also contain chemical ingredients. Follow the guide above as to the products that you should avoid.
  4. When doing a waterless dog bath, make sure you use an appropriate amount of product, nothing more and nothing less. You can do more harm than good when you apply too much product. It can also be difficult to brush out since it is designed to trap oil and odor. Make sure you read the instructions on the dry shampoo container and use it as instructed. Avoid using it on sensitive areas or places that are hard to brush out.
  5. Brush out the excess dry shampoo on your dog’s fur using the rubber brush. This is a great and gentle way to thoroughly dust out the dog’s hair and make the fur glossy.
  6. Wipe down your pet’s fur with a grooming wipe. This collects the loose fur and dust left behind. Use this to wipe areas that you were not able to apply the dry shampoo.
  7. To extend the scent benefits, finish it up with a grooming spray.

How Can I Make My Dog Smell Better Without A Bath?

Here are some tips and tricks you can do to make your dog smell better without having to get them into a routine of bathing as much as we do.

  1. Use pet wipes.
  2. Brush your pet regularly.
  3. DRY SHAMPOO!
  4. Clean all your dog’s stuff.
  5. Clean their ears regularly.
  6. Keep their mouths clean as much as possible.
  7. Use freshening spray.
  8. Use deodorizing spray.

How Can I Keep My Dog Smelling Good?

As much as possible, as a fur parent, we want to make sure you avoid chemicals. Obviously, you can use gentle products on a regular basis but it is not best to wash your dog often. Washing them too often can cause them to lose the natural oils in their coat. So, when your dog starts to smell iffy in between their scheduled baths, you need other methods to keep them smelling good.

Here are some things you can do to keep your dog smelling good.

  1. Brush your pooch regularly.
  2. When washing, use an all-natural shampoo.
  3. Keep their teeth clean as much as possible.
  4. Clean their ears.
  5. Always wash your dog’s beddings.
  6. Rinse after each walks.

How Can I Clean My Dog Without A Bath?

Ensuring your dog to have proper hygiene keeps your dog healthy. This is your responsibility as the fur parent to ensure that. However, there may be reasons that your dog might not be able to take a proper bath, either due to your tight schedule or situational reasons like post-surgical recovery. Whatever the reason may be, it is still important to not ignore the importance of your dog’s hygiene.

Here are some things you can do to clean your dog without having to bathe them.

  • Use dog dry shampoos.
  • Use wet towels to clean and sanitize their fur and skin.
  • Make a homemade deodorant for your dog by mixing one part apple cider vinegar with two parts water.

 How Often Can I Use Waterless Shampoo On My Dog?

You can use waterless shampoo on your dog weekly if necessary. Just make sure you remove the excess fur as much as you can. Brush your dog’s fur daily to keep their natural oils evenly distributed.

Can You Spray Dogs With Dry Shampoo?

When using dry shampoo, make sure it is in moderation since too much dry shampoo can cause more harm than good.

What is the Best Waterless Shampoo for Dogs?

If you need some recommendations for good dry shampoos and waterless shampoos for dogs, here are some of the best-reviewed products from Amazon that you can check out!

  1. Dry Cuddles Foaming Pet Dry Shampoo for Dogs and Cats has a human-grade formula that is safe for you, your dog, and the environment. It also does not contain neem oil that can be toxic for fur pets that lick their fur.
  2. Bodhi Dog’s New Waterless Shampoo is made with natural extracts that are formulated for sensitive skin.
  3. Warren London Dry & Waterless Shampoo for Dogs & Pets is a convenient dog spray wash that cleanses and deodorizes that works on all coats and ages.
  4. Arm & Hammer For Pets Super Deodorizing Spray for Dogs is made with the highest quality ingredients that can help eliminate smelly odors and can be used on either wet or dry coats.
  5. Wahl Professional Animal Waterless Oatmeal Dog Shampoo is plant-derived with coconut lime verbena and has oatmeal extracts that help soothes damaged skin.
  6. ExerShield Dog Dry Shampoo contains essential oils that are vet-approved for dogs and puppies. This is perfect for travel, camping hikes, and other adventurous activities.
  7. Coat Defense Canine Daily Preventive Powder is a dry shampoo and pet deodorizer that helps provides itchy skin relief, wound care, and odor removal to help improve your dog’s hygiene.

Other Things You Should Consider

There are cases where using dry shampoo for your dog is less likely to be effective than regular shampoos. Dry shampoos for dogs usually vary in quality, others irritate your pet’s eyes, nose, or mouth, while others leave a white residue that can be hard to get rid of. Dry shampoos should not be used as an alternative for normal water and soap bath.

Traditional baths ensure that your pet’s fur and skin are kept healthy and clean. Your pup’s dog-tor can recommend you a suitable and reputable brand of dry shampoo to suit your pet’s needs.

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