If you’ve even run out of dog shampoo, you might have wondered if using human shampoo was a reasonable alternative. We’re here to tell you that it’s not. Make sure you remember to pick up some on your next trip to the grocery store!
Why human shampoo should not be used on dog’s
Human skin and dog skin are different in several aspects, as a result, human hair and skin products are specially created for our purposes, and the same is true for dogs. For instance, human skin and dog skin differs in pH level and oil composition So, while human shampoo can make a dog’s coat seem clean and shiny at first, the truth is, in the long run, it is doing more harm than good.
Human shampoo is, in fact, very drying to dog skin since it destroys the acid mantle which is responsible for keeping the skin protected and hydrated. This can lead to irritation and contact dermatitis. Dog shampoos are created in such a way that they are milder and therefore more of the naturally occurring oils on the skin are left behind.
Note that dogs have a neutral; skin pH balance of 6.2-7.4, while humans have an acidic skin pH balance of 5.5-5.6.
The acid mantle is responsible for protecting a dog’s skin from bacteria, parasites, and viruses. Without a healthy acid mantle, dogs are more susceptible to infections and disease.
Dry skin is also itchy skin. When your dog itches, he can create an open wound which can create a bigger problem.
Alternatives to human shampoo
If you run out of dog shampoo, here’s what you can use instead of human shampoo:
In urgent situations, you can use a bit of Dawn dish soap and warm water. Rescue organizations use Dawn to treat pets and wildlife affected by oil spills because it is effective at decontamination. Ensure you rinse the soap thoroughly to prevent irritation from soap build-up.
You may also use baby shampoo since it has gentle ingredients.
Baking soda plus hydrogen peroxide and some gentle dishwashing soap is a great solution for stinky dogs.
Choosing a shampoo
Always choose a shampoo formulated specifically for dogs. If your dog has a skin condition such as allergies, skin infection, or just has dry or flaky skin, you may want to consider medicated shampoo.