The Best Shampoo for a Lustrous Coat

December 04, 2019

The ASPCA notes that, while you should brush your pet several times a week, you should only bathe them once a quarter or so (unless they are very dirty or smell unbelievably bad). Bathing more often than needed, or using the wrong pet shampoo and conditioner, can make your animal’s hair course and more easily broken. It can make his skin red and itchy and dry. There are SO many options for bathing your pet on the market. It may be overwhelming to pick one!

The best pet shampoo is specifically formulated to make your pet look and feel his best. You’ll also be sure that it is safe and designed to be used on your type of pet, specifically. Don’t use dog shampoo on a cat, for example.

Finding Quality Grooming Products For Your Pet

It is essential that you choose a pet-specific shampoo for bathing your cat or dog. Human skin and hair products are not suitable for animals. They contain harsh, acidic chemicals that could damage your pet's sensitive coat.

When choosing a pet shampoo and conditioner, you should take into account the results you would like to achieve by bathing them. Do they simply need a thorough cleaning? Do you want to encourage faster hair growth? Any fleas or ticks?

Also, consider how often you will need to bathe your dog. Do you have a puppy that tends to accidentally lay in poo? Does your dog appear to want to win a first-place medal in mud rolling? Do you let him swim in the funky little pond down the road? More frequent bathing requires a gentler, more moisturizing bathing routine.

Just like you can find human products that are created for different types of hair, your pet can have particular hair care needs as well. Certain types of animal fur and skin respond better to specific shampoo types.

If your pet has dry or sensitive skin, a hypoallergenic chemical-free choice is the best pet shampoo for him. These are often made with oatmeal and aloe. It is very important that you rinse thoroughly when bathing him as built-up shampoo residue can irritate his skin.

Medicated pet shampoos, with tea tree oil or antifungals, will be the best pet shampoo if he is experiencing a fungal or bacterial infection.

Pet shampoo and conditioner made for pest control can be helpful. Fleas, ticks, and mites may be making your pet miserable; grooming products specifically to kill existing bugs and repel new ones are easily found in pet stores. Some are made with essential oils and are popular non-chemical options.

Make sure to find a quality pet conditioner to pair with your shampoo. It is particularly important if you need to bathe your dog more often than recommended. Shampooing strips the natural oils from your pet's skin; conditioners moisturize and detangle in their place.

If your pet is prone to excessive shedding, if he gets very dirty very quickly, or if his fur holds smells, he may need a quick refresher without requiring a full bath. You can find bath wipes and dry shampoo sprays that can help. Pair them with a thorough brushing to eliminate surface smells and dirt.

It is simple to develop a bathing routine that helps your dog feel confident and secure.

Choose a spot that is easily and securely contained (a huge wet dog running around your house and jumping in your bed is not a fun way to spend an afternoon!) and is comfortable for you to sit down in (because standing hunched over the bathtub for an hour makes for an aching back!). A handheld showerhead is a great choice.

  • Talk to your pet softly and reassuringly through the entire process. Keep your voice and demeanor calm and quiet to quell his anxiety.
  • Brush your pet thoroughly before bathing. This removes excess dust and dirt (which can result in a huge mud puddle when it comes into contact with water!) and ensures there are no knots that could tug at his skin and hurt.
  • Dab a bit of mineral oil around his eyes and put a cotton ball in his ears before starting. That will help avoid getting water and soap inside.
  • Make sure the water is the right temperature. His skin could burn very easily, so avoid hot water. Lukewarm water is fine for most dogs; slightly cooler water for large dogs that overheat more easily is preferable.
  • Rinse rinse rinse. Any leftover pet shampoo and conditionercan cause irritation to your dog’s skin and can make him sick if he licks it off.
  • Let your dog air dry before brushing again.

Make sure to reward him with lots of cuddles and treats at each step.

Habits For A Healthy Coat

First, adequate nutrition is the biggest factor in your pet's appearance. High-quality pet food should be the base of your feeding routine.

The goal is for your pet to maximize his protein, fat, and vitamin and mineral intake. Omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids are essential for a healthy coat, while vitamins A and E and zinc boost the condition of his skin and improve the quality of the sebaceous oils it produces.

Adding in healthy human food can positively impact his overall health and looks. The best people food for your pet include:

  • Sweet potatoes
  • Yogurt
  • Eggs
  • Chia seeds (soaked and sprouted is best)
  • Coconut oil
  • Chicken, beef, and oily fish
  • Plain cooked oatmeal

Another routine that cultivates good health is regular grooming. Brush your pet every day. Use a brush specifically for their fur type. Check their skin every time, paying special attention to changing moles or open sores.

Regular veterinary care is an important piece of the puzzle. Optimal health is the key to achieving a shiny, lustrous coat. Make sure your pet gets a check-up, including vaccines, at least once a year (more often as a puppy and as he ages).

Treating any underlying health conditions will improve his appearance and hygiene. Many can affect the quality of his skin and coat health.

A shiny, smooth coat and supple, clear skin are useful indicators of a pet’s good health.

By following a few simple nutrition principles and making sure to choose the best pet shampoo for your dog, you can ensure he always looks his best!