Pet Keen is reader-supported. When you buy via links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission at no cost to you. Learn more.

7 Best Cat Shampoos in 2022 – Reviews & Top Picks

Girl washes cat in the bath

There is nothing better than having your feline friend smell fresh and clean for cuddle time. Washing your cat forms part of their essential grooming needs, especially since your cat’s fur accumulates dirt and sebum which can lead to dull, damaged, and dry fur.

When you are searching for a cat shampoo, you want to choose one with as many natural ingredients as possible, and grooming features that meet your cats’ specific needs (itchy skin, irritation, and tangled fur).

We have compiled a list of our top picks of cat shampoos that are beneficial to your cat’s coat and skin health and carefully reviewed and ensured each product meets the requirements to be considered one of the best cat shampoos.

divider-catA Quick Comparison of Our Favorites in 2022

Image Product Details
Best Overall
Winner
Vet Formula Clinical Cat Shampoo Vet Formula Clinical Cat Shampoo
  • Antiseptic and antifungal properties
  • Prevents skin condition flare-ups
  • Paraben-free
  • Best Value
    Second place
    TropiClean Luxury Cat Shampoo TropiClean Luxury Cat Shampoo
  • Safe for use with flea and tick treatments
  • Relaxes tangles
  • Gentle cleansing abilities
  • Premium Choice
    Third place
    Earthbath Oatmeal Cat Shampoo Earthbath Oatmeal Cat Shampoo
  • Alleviates itchy skin
  • Deodorizing effect
  • Biodegradable, paraben, and phosphate-free
  • Ark Naturals Neem Protect Ark Naturals Neem Protect
  • Natural, safe, and eco-friendly
  • Features neem oil
  • Does not contain sodium laurel sulfate
  • Burt’s Bees Hypoallergenic Shampoo Burt’s Bees Hypoallergenic Shampoo
  • Hypoallergenic
  • Leaves coat shiny
  • Cruelty, paraben, sulphate-free
  • The 7 Best Cat Shampoos

    1. Veterinary Formula Clinical Care Antiseptic Cat Shampoo – Best Overall

    Veterinary Formula Clinical

    Main ingredients: Aloe vera, benzethonium chloride, ketoconazole
    Benefit: Antiseptic & antifungal
    Grooming feature: Medicated

    The overall best cat shampoo we have picked for your cat is an antiseptic and antifungal shampoo formulated by veterinarians. The Veterinary Formula Clinical Care Antiseptic & Antifungal Pet Shampoo helps to relieve common skin conditions in cats such as dermatitis and pyoderma using two key ingredients – benzethonium chloride to eliminate bacteria, and ketoconazole to treat and prevent fungal infections. Together, these two main ingredients help to relieve symptoms of skin infections that our feline friends are prone to.

    You can use this shampoo even if your cat is not currently suffering from a skin condition because the formula is unique, soothing, and cleansing. You can ideally use this shampoo up to twice a week and your cat will enjoy the benefits of aloe vera to soothe and relieve skin irritation while reaping the benefits of a carefully formulated shampoo that uses unique ingredients and is paraben-free. Since this is a gentle and skin-combatting shampoo, you do not have to worry about the ingredients irritating your cat’s skin.

    Pros
    • Antiseptic and antifungal properties
    • Prevents skin condition flare-ups
    • Paraben-free
    • Soothes and relieves skin irritation
    Cons
    • Stings if it gets in your cats’ eyes

    2. TropiClean Luxury 2 in 1 Cat Shampoo & Conditioner – Best Value

    TropiClean Luxury

    Main ingredients: Coconut cleanser, oatmeal, papaya, and mango extract
    Benefit: Soothing and conditioning
    Grooming feature: Gentle cleanser

    Instead of having to purchase a shampoo and conditioner separately for your cats’ grooming needs, you can save money and purchase a 2 in 1 product instead. The TropiClean Luxury 2 in 1 Pet Shampoo & Conditioner offers you the convenience of a shampoo and conditioner in one bottle with gentle and nourishing ingredients which is what makes this product the best value for money product. This is great for cats with long fur who are prone to developing knots and tangles, as this shampoo and conditioner work to replenish your cat’s natural moisture balance and relax tangled fur to make brushing easier. All in all this is the best cat shampoo for the money.

    The formula is soap-free, so you do not need to worry about it interfering with tick and flea treatments and you can routinely use this product to cleanse and condition your cat’s fur. Since it is enriched with coconut oil, which is good for dry and matted fur, it can cause a greasy layer to appear on your cat’s coat if it is overused.

    Pros
    • Safe for use with flea and tick treatments
    • Gentle cleansing abilities
    • Relaxes tangles
    • Both a conditioner and shampoo
    Cons
    • Leaves oily residue

    3. Earthbath Oatmeal & Aloe Vera Cat Shampoo – Premium Choice

    Main ingredients: Aloe vera, oatmeal, vanilla, almond
    Benefit: Moisturizing
    Grooming feature: Cruelty and soap-free formula

    Our premium product in this category is the soap-free Earthbaths Oatmeal & Aloe Vera Cat Shampoo. The main aim of this shampoo is to re-moisturize your cat’s skin and coat to help relieve dry and itchy coats in cats who frequently scratch themselves. Not only does this shampoo leave your cat smelling fresh and clean, but it is biodegradable, paraben, and phosphate-free. It is a moisturizing shampoo that gently cleanses your cat’s coat and helps heal scratched skin while neutralizing any odors. This shampoo is ideal for cats over 6 weeks of age and can be used frequently without any deterioration to your cat’s coat and skin health.

    Pros
    • Alleviates itchy skin
    • Deodorizing effect
    • Biodegradable, paraben, and phosphate-free
    Cons
    • May leave an oily residue on cats’ fur

    4. Ark Naturals Neem Protect – Best Natural Cat Shampoo

    Ark Naturals Neem Protect

    Main ingredients: Neem oil, coconut oil
    Benefit: Natural formula
    Grooming feature: Cleanser made from natural botanicals

    Natural cat shampoos are great for your cat, the environment, and your carbon footprint. Utilizing a natural cat shampoo will help reduce your cat’s exposure to harmful chemicals while giving them a gentle cleanse and moisturize. Ark Naturals Neem Protect Cat Shampoo focuses on providing your cat with a holistic cleansing solution that is environmentally friendly and formulated from natural botanicals which have been proven to improve your cat’s coat.

    This shampoo does not contain sodium laurel sulfate which is known to dry out your cat’s coat and remove its natural oils. Instead, Arks Naturals has created a moisturizing cat shampoo with natural ingredients such as neem oil (derived from trees native to India) which is known to naturally cleanse cats’ fur and coconut oil has been added as a moisturizer. This shampoo is natural, safe for your cat, eco-friendly, and efficiently removes dirt, oils, and sebum from your cat’s coat while soothing dermatitis and other minor skin conditions.

    Pros
    • Natural, safe, and eco-friendly
    • Features neem oil
    • Does not contain sodium laurel sulfate
    Cons
    • Coconut oil may leave an oily residue

    5. Burt’s Bees Hypoallergenic Cat Shampoo

    Burt’s Bees

    Main ingredients: Shea butter, honey
    Benefit: Moisturizing
    Grooming feature: Ph balanced, cruelty-free

    This hypoallergenic cat shampoo is ideal for cats who suffer from dry skin and need a shampoo that can help alleviate minor skin conditions while conditioning the fur for a shiny appearance. Burt’s Bees Hypoallergenic Cat Shampoo is cruelty, sulfate, and paraben-free, which means that there are fewer harmful ingredients for your cat’s benefit. This shampoo is veterinary recommended, free from fragrances, colorants, and harsh chemicals that may cause allergies and skin condition flare-ups in cats with sensitive skin. The addition of shea butter has an excellent moisturizing effect, without leaving too much oil residue on your cat. Keep in mind that this shampoo has no deodorizing effect, which will not work for smelly cats.

    Pros
    • Hypoallergenic
    • Leaves coat shiny
    • Cruelty, paraben, sulphate-free
    Cons
    • Leaves an unpleasant after smell

    6. Arm & Hammer 2-in-1 De-odor & Dander Cat Shampoo

    Arm & Hammer

    Main ingredients: Baking soda, lavender, chamomile
    Benefit: Dander reducing
    Grooming feature: Cleanser for dander and strong cat odors

    The Arm & Hammer 2-in-1 Deodorizing & Dander Reducing Cat Shampoo features dander and deodorizing cat shampoo with baking soda to combat strong bodily odors on cats while removing dander. The lavender and chamomile formula may also help to reduce some of your cat’s stress during bathing time, as these scents have natural calming abilities. This shampoo does contain sodium laurel sulfate, which has an extremely strong oil-reducing ability, and in conjunction with baking soda, this shampoo may not be ideal for cats who have dry skin or other itchy skin conditions. The baking soda dissolves into fine particles to thoroughly cleanse your cat’s fur while removing trapped dirt, stains, and oils.

    Pros
    • Strong cleansing formula
    • Deodorizing
    • Removes dander, dirt, and oils
    Cons
    • Not ideal for cats who are prone to dry skin

    7. Frisco Shed Control Shampoo for Cats

    Frisco Shed Control

    Main ingredients: Oat protein, jojoba oil, vitamin-infused
    Benefit: Reduces coat shedding
    Grooming feature: Plant-derived cleanser

    If your cat is a shedder, then using the Frisco Shed Control Shampoo for Cats may help support healthy shedding levels in your cat by cleansing away dirt and moisturizing your cat’s fur with coconut oil. It contains no parabens or harmful dyes, but rather nourishing ingredients like jojoba oil, oat protein, vitamin B5, A, E, and D to replenish your cat’s coat. This shed control cat shampoo works by removing loose undercoat hairs to reduce shedding in cats if it is used frequently. The shampoos moisturizing abilities aren’t too great, so it is best to avoid using this on cats who are prone to skin conditions such as dermatitis. Overall, it leaves your cat’s fur soft and shiny with a strong sweet nectar scent.

    Pros
    • Removes loose undercoat hairs
    • Supports healthy shedding levels
    • Replenishes coat
    Cons
    • Not ideal for cats with dry skin

    divider-cat

    Buyer’s Guide: Selecting the Best Cat Shampoo

    Why is it important to wash your cat?

    Both indoor and outdoor cats are prone to build-up in their fur, whether from dirt, oils, sebum, or dander. Using shampoo on your cat will help cleanse them and remove any trapped debris that settles within their fur. Furthermore, shampoos can benefit cats who suffer from certain skin conditions, as each shampoo has unique grooming features which target a specific fur or skin problem in your cat. Keeping your cat freshly washed helps to reduce any odors that they carry, add a shine to the coat, aid in detangling, and make the cat’s coat appear fluffier.

    It is also better for you as the owner, as you can ensure that your cat’s hygiene is good which will reduce dirt and smells from rubbing off onto your furniture or on your hands while you are petting them. Let’s see how to pick the best cat shampoo for your cat.

    Maine Coon getting the shower treatment
    Image Credit: Olleg, Shutterstock

    How to choose the right shampoo for your cat

    • Check the target label to ensure that it meets your cats’ requirements, such as a ‘deodorizing shampoo’ which is formulated for smelly cats.
    • Ensure that the shampoo has ingredients that you want to expose your cat to and avoid harmful chemicals and additives.
    • The shampoo should meet your budget requirements and not be too expensive in the long term. You may only be able to see desired results after some time, so you will have to purchase the product again if you want the same results.
    • Avoid sodium lauryl sulfate and other strong cleansing ingredients for cats who have dry skin, as it can cause flare-ups which may be uncomfortable for your cat.

    divider-cat

    Conclusion

    Out of all the cat shampoos we have reviewed, our two top picks are the overall best cat shampoo, the Veterinary Formula Clinical Care Antiseptic & Antifungal Shampoo because it has a great coat and skin protective properties that can be used by cats suffering from uncomfortable skin conditions, or even cats who need special antiseptic shampoo to prevent flare-ups. Secondly, we have chosen Ark Naturals Neem Oil Protective Shampoo as the best cat shampoo for the money due to its nourishing coat formula and natural ingredients which are safe and effective for cats.

    You may also want to read:


    Featured Image Credit: Olleg, Shutterstock

    Our vets

    Want to talk to a vet online?

    Whether you have concerns about your dog, cat, or other pet, trained vets have the answers!

    Our vets