Can You Wash Your Dog With Human Shampoo?

No, you should not use. When you run out of dog shampoo, you should not wash your dog with human shampoo. Why? First of all, you need to understand that dogs and humans have different skin types. Dogs have a thin skin layer called the acid mantle, protecting the skin and can easily be damaged or washed off by human shampoos designed for thicker human skin epidermis. When the acid mantle is washed off by human shampoo, dog’s skin becomes vulnerable to viruses and bacterial infections. The skin can also appear dry and flaky.

Can You Wash Your Dog With Human Shampoo

How Does Human Shampoo Affect Dog’s Skin?

We need to understand that human and dog skin have different pH. The human skin has a pH balance of around 5.5-5.6, which is acidic. On the other hand, a dog’s skin has a pH of around 6.2-7.3, which is around neutral. So when one uses human shampoo on the dog, the acidic mantle is disrupted. That leaves your pooch’s skin vulnerable to bacteria, viruses, and parasites. So if your dog is attacked by viruses, bacteria, or parasites, they are likely to be infected.

The pH imbalance also causes skin irritation, leading to scratching, itching, and abrasions. Additionally, the skin will likely look flaky and dry due to excess drying caused by the disruption of the acid mantle that absorbs water and reduces evaporation. This can also leave the skin vulnerable to infections. So if you use human shampoo on your pooch, it will likely cause more damage than good.

If your dog has sensitive skin, you should not even think of washing it with human shampoo. The shampoo will cause severe skin irritation and can even lead to a skin disease. So you should be very careful even when choosing the normal dog shampoo for your dog.

What Can You Do in Case of an Emergency?

If it is an emergency and the dog must be washed immediately, you can use a baby shampoo or an all-natural human shampoo that is gentle on the dog’s skin. A gentle human shampoo with ingredients such as colloidal oatmeal, aloe Vera, chamomile oil, and vitamin E is less likely to damage your dog’s skin if it is a once-in-blue-moon thing. Baby shampoo or a gentle natural human shampoo is less likely to disrupt the acid mantle if it’s used once in a lifetime. But the dog should be adequately rinsed using a lot of running water to remove all traces of the mild human/baby shampoo.

Why Shouldn’t I Use a Human Shampoo on My Dog?

Wash Your Dog With Human Shampoo

Using a harsh human shampoo on your dog washes off or disrupts a thin outermost layer on the dog’s skin (acid mantle), leaving your pooch vulnerable to viruses, bacteria, and even parasites like fleas and ticks. As a result, your dog is prone to viral and bacterial infections. Human shampoo can also make a dog’s skin feel dry, leading to skin irritation, scratching, and itching, making the dog extremely uncomfortable.

So if you don’t have dog shampoo, you should not bathe it using human shampoo, especially those with harsh chemicals like parabens, synthetic fragrances, and dyes. Such human shampoos are dangerous and can cause irreparable damage to your dog’s skin. Unless advised by a vet to use a specific mild human shampoo on your dog, you should not try it.

What Guide for Sensitive Skin?

If your dog has sensitive skin, you should use a dog shampoo ideal for sensitive skin. You will need a shampoo with a pH balance of around 7 to avoid irritation or allergic reactions. If you use a human shampoo with the wrong pH balance and harsh chemicals, it will strip away the acid mantle and protective oils on the dog’s skin, leaving it vulnerable to infections. So when choosing a shampoo for your dog, pick an almost neutral product with natural ingredients like aloe Vera, tea tree oil, and more for perfect results.

Is There Any Human Shampoo I Can Use on My Dog?

In case of an emergency, there are some human shampoos you can use to wash your dog. But it should be a once-in-a-lifetime thing to avoid reactions. If you use it more often, you will be hurting your dog in many ways. You can use an all-natural human shampoo with chamomile oil, tea tree oil, olive oil, aloe Vera, oatmeal, and natural vitamins. Most baby shampoos can be used on a dog because they are gentle and soothing.

The secret is to ensure the shampoo has an almost neutral pH balance and is free of harsh chemicals like dyes, fragrances, parabens, and bleaching ingredients. Also, it is advisable to dilute the shampoo and carry out a patch test before using it on your canine pal. If the shampoo doesn’t cause any allergic reaction, you can use it. If it does, you should not use it. Experts also advise dog owners to rinse the dog thoroughly to remove all traces of human shampoo on the dog’s skin and coat. That will prevent damage or allergic reactions.

What are Dog Shampoo Alternatives?

If you don’t have dog shampoo or you can’t afford one, there are many alternatives you can consider. First, you can use baking soda and mix it with warm water and oatmeal. The mixture will work perfectly fine, just like dog shampoo. Alternatively, you can use baby shampoo but make it a once-in-a-lifetime thing. You can also use a mixture of vinegar and water.

Can I Use Baby Shampoo on My Dog?

Yes, you can use baby shampoo on your dog, but it should be a once-in-a-blue-moon thing. You should use it in an emergency when you MUST wash your dog and don’t have dog shampoo. Baby shampoo is gentle and will unlikely damage or harm your dog’s skin. Why? Most baby shampoos have few natural and safe ingredients. But you should not wash your dog with baby shampoos frequently.

Final Words

If you have been wondering whether you can wash your dog with human shampoo, now you know the answer. You should not bathe your dog using human shampoo unless recommended by a certified vet. But in case of an emergency, you can use a baby shampoo which is gentle and soothing. Baby shampoos will less likely harm your dog’s skin when used once in a lifetime.