Best Dog Shampoo for Itching

Most of us have had an itchy dog at some point. If you have, then you know how miserable itching and scratching can make your dog. It makes you miserable, too! Seeing your dog’s poor red skin and hearing the constant scratching and chewing is enough to drive any pet lover crazy.

Dogs can itch for lots of different reasons. Knowing why your dog is itching is important so you can choose the best dog shampoo for itching. No matter the reason, there are some excellent anti-itching dog shampoos available today. We can help you choose the best shampoo for your dog’s itching.

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Why do dogs itch?

Believe it or not, dogs itch for many of the same reasons that people itch. They can have bug bites; seasonal allergies; dry, irritated skin; and skin infections.

Fleas and ticks

One of the most common reasons for your dog to itch is because of fleas and ticks or any other little pest that wants to snack on your dog. For example, mosquitoes bite dogs. There are all kinds of flea and tick shampoos. Whether your dog is tiny or large, flea and tick shampoos can get rid of fleas and ticks. Most products will kill fleas and ticks immediately and continue to repel fleas and ticks for several weeks. They usually repel fleas longer than ticks so if you live in an area where ticks are common, you might want to consider using a tick collar. Flea and tick shampoos can range from products made from natural ingredients to stronger products that use pesticides so check the labels. If your dog has a heavy flea infestation you will probably need to use a stronger product. Otherwise, you can generally use a more natural flea shampoo. Remember to treat your home and yard, too, so the fleas don’t hatch out and return in a few weeks. One of our favorite flea and tick shampoos for itching is Richard’s Organics Flea & Tick Shampoo. It’s natural with no sulfates or parabens. No artificial colors or fragrance. Safe to use around children and other pets. (Do not use on cats.)

Dry skin

Many dogs today itch because they have dry skin. Dry skin can be caused by a lot of different things. It can be a symptom of a more serious healthy problem such as hypothyroidism or Cushing’s disease, for example. It can be due to parasites. Hairless breeds such as the Chinese Crested can have dry skin unless you keep it moisturized. Winter weather, dry heat in the home, too many baths, harsh shampoos, and poor quality dog foods can also lead to dry skin. In some cases there are easy fixes for these problems such as adding fish oil to your dog’s diet to provide more omega-3 fatty acid. If your house is dry in the winter, consider adding a humidifier. You can also use a good moisturizing shampoo that soothes dry skin. Many of these shampoos include oatmeal and soothing oils to help heal your dog’s dry, cracked skin. If good nutrition and a good, soothing shampoo regimen don’t help your dog, see your veterinarian about your dog’s dry skin so you can rule out more serious conditions. A good moisturizing shampoo for dry skin that we like (as long as your dog doesn’t have a more serious health problem) is Earthbath Oatmeal & Aloe Dog & Cat Shampoo. There are lots of oatmeal shampoos but this formula from Earthbath has hundreds of positive reviews on Chewy.com. It’s soap-free with no parbens or phosphates. And it moisturizes, heals, and soothes your dog’s dry skin.

Allergies

Some dogs itch because of allergies. These can be seasonal allergies, food allergies, or something your dog comes in contact with in your home. It helps if you know your dog’s triggers so you can avoid them. Anti-allergy shampoos provide allergy relief for your dog. They can soothe the skin to reduce itching and help your dog heal. They range from mild shampoos to medicated, veterinary formulas. Many of these products are antifungal and antibacterial.  We like HyLyt Hypoallergenic Shampoo with Essential Fatty Acids. It’s gentle, hypoallergenic, and soap-free. Controls flaking and scaling, and it contains natural moisturizers.

Bacterial and fungal problems

Speaking of bacterial and fungal problems, these issues can also cause your dog to itch. They can also be hard to clear up, especially fungal problems. These problems are often secondary infections for dogs after he has started itching and scratching his skin. He may develop sores which then develop a bacterial or fungal infection. Using a medicated or veterinary formula shampoo can help clear up the problem but you will need to follow the directions carefully. We suggest talking to your veterinarian if your dog has one of these problems. In other cases, a simple problem like a hot spot can grow from a tiny spot in the morning to a large red sore that is infected later in the day. Proper treatment and a good anti-bacterial, anti-fungal shampoo may be able to help heal this kind of problem, too. Try MiconaHex+Triz Shampoo. It treats topical fungal and bacterial infections. Formulated to fight dandruff, ringworms, yeast, fungus, and other bacterial infections.

Best Dog Shampoo for Anti-Itching

Vet’s Best Allergy Itch Relief Shampoo for Dogs

Since dogs can itch for different reasons it’s hard to choose just one anti itch shampoo for dogs. However, if we have to choose just one, it would be Vet’s Best Allergy Itch Relief Shampoo for Dogs . This formula is made for dogs with itchy skin due to allergies or sensitive skin. It contains essential oils and natural ingredients such as oatmeal, D’limonene (a natural citrus flea killer), and tea tree oil to help calm your dog’s irritated skin and moisturize any dryness. You can use it often without drying out your dog’s skin. And it won’t affect topical flea treatments. Vet’s Best Allergy Itch Relief Shampoo also gets top reviews from dog lovers.

Conclusion

We hope these suggestions help you choose the best dog shampoo for itching. There are also some anti-itch sprays that can help your dog itch less. You might want to try one of them for your dog in between baths. Once your dog starts to get some relief from the itching and scratching it’s amazing how fast you’ll both start to feel better! He’ll be acting like himself in no time. Let us know how these shampoos work for you.

Carlotta Cooper

Carlotta is a long-time contributing editor for the weekly dog show magazine Dog News. She's also the author of The Dog Adoption Bible, the Dog Writers Association of America Adoptashelter.com Award winner for 2013. In addition, she's written Canine Cuisine: 101 Natural Dog Food & Treat Recipes to Make Your Dog Healthy and Happy.

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