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Home > Dogs > 11 Best Dog Shampoos for Itchy Skin in 2024: Reviews & Top Picks

11 Best Dog Shampoos for Itchy Skin in 2024: Reviews & Top Picks

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Dr. Lorna Whittemore Photo

Reviewed & Fact-Checked By

Dr. Lorna Whittemore

Veterinarian, MRCVS

The information is current and up-to-date in accordance with the latest veterinarian research.

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A person applying dog shampoo to a Poodle's coat

Unless your pooch is filthy, regular bathing is not usually necessary, and in fact, can cause harm by stripping your dog’s coat of its natural oils if done too frequently with the wrong type of shampoo. However, there are times when bathing your pooch can be highly beneficial or even necessary, and if your pooch suffers from itchy skin caused by allergies or bacterial infection, bathing them can help soothe the symptoms and ease their discomfort.

Of course, in these situations, not just any shampoo will do, and you’ll need to use a shampoo specially formulated for itchy skin and allergies.

There are lots of dog shampoos on the market, and naturally, you cannot try them all to see which helps your pooch. We’ve narrowed down the available dog shampoos to our favorites complete with in-depth reviews to help you find the best product to help soothe your dog’s itchy skin.

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A Quick Look at Our Favorites of 2024

Image Product Details
Best Overall
Winner
Hepper Colloidal Oatmeal Dog Shampoo Hepper Colloidal Oatmeal Dog Shampoo
  • Made using natural ingredients like oatmeal and aloe
  • Free from sulfates, phthalates, soap, DEA, and gluten
  • Can be used on cats as well as dogs
  • Budget Buy
    Second place
    Frisco Anti-Itch Shampoo with Aloe for Dogs Frisco Anti-Itch Shampoo with Aloe for Dogs
  • Gentle, soothing formula
  • Contains vitamins A, E, and B5
  • Added soothing aloe and coconut
  • Third place
    Virbac KetoChlor Medicated Shampoo for Dogs & Cats Virbac KetoChlor Medicated Shampoo for Dogs & Cats
  • Fragrance-free
  • Vet recommended
  • No prescription required
  • TropiClean Hypo-Allergenic Gentle Coconut Puppy Shampoo TropiClean Hypo-Allergenic Gentle Coconut Puppy Shampoo
  • Specially formulated for puppies
  • Made with natural ingredients
  • pH balanced
  • Douxo S3 CALM Soothing Skin Dog & Cat Shampoo Douxo S3 CALM Soothing Skin Dog & Cat Shampoo
  • Specially formulated to soothe irritated and itchy skin
  • Helps moisturize and detangle your dog’s fur
  • Contains ophytrium and chlorhexidine
  • The 11 Best Dog Shampoos For Itchy Skin

    1. Hepper Colloidal Oatmeal Dog Shampoo — Best Overall

    Hepper Oatmeal Shampoo - Bowser - Saint Bernard - Outside Grass 1 - Cropped

    Key ingredients: Aloe, oatmeal
    Size: 16 oz
    Fragrance: Cucumber and aloe

    Hepper Colloidal Oatmeal Pet Shampoo is soap, gluten, DEA, sulfate, and phthalate free, which means that the natural ingredients will not irritate your dog’s skin. It has a cucumber and aloe scent, leaving your dog smelling fresh and clean without the need for perfume or artificial scents. Although some natural scents can dissipate almost as soon as you have finished bathing your dog, the aloe and cucumber smell is evident for longer.

    The shampoo has a pH-balanced formula, so it cleans without drying out the coat or causing irritation. The formula also conditions and leaves your pet’s coat looking smooth and fresh, which can help minimize the tangles that often come after bath time. Because it is an all-purpose pet shampoo, it is a great choice for multi-pet families because it can be used on dogs and any cats in the household.

    Hepper Colloidal Oatmeal Pet Shampoo is a little on the expensive side. Still, it is gentle, has a pleasant aroma that lasts, and can be used on cats and dogs, so it is a convenient option for families with multiple pets, making it the best overall dog shampoo for itchy skin.

    At PetKeen.com, we’ve admired Hepper for many years and decided to take a controlling ownership interest so that we could benefit from the outstanding designs of this cool pet company!

    Pros
    • Made using natural ingredients like oatmeal and aloe
    • Free from sulfates, phthalates, soap, DEA, and gluten
    • Can be used on cats as well as dogs
    • Moisturizes and cleans coats
    Cons
    • A little expensive

    2. Frisco Anti-Itch Shampoo with Aloe for Dogs — Budget Buy

    Frisco Anti-Itch Shampoo with Aloe for Dogs

    Key ingredients: Aloe vera, coconut
    Size: 20 oz
    Fragrance: Tea tree

    The Frisco Anti-Itch Shampoo is a great budget buy, according to our research. The shampoo cleans and deodorizes gently yet thoroughly, and the included certified organic aloe vera and real coconut help gently soothe itchy skin, plus, the tea tree oil will help your pooch smell and feel great. It also contains added vitamins A and E, as well as pro-vitamin B5 for coat and skin health. Lastly, this shampoo is completely free from parabens, dyes, and artificial fragrances or perfumes.

    While this shampoo is affordable and effective, several customers reported that this shampoo has a potent, overwhelming smell, even a few days after washing.

    Pros
    • Inexpensive
    • Gentle, soothing formula
    • Added soothing aloe and coconut
    • Contains vitamins A, E, and B5
    • Free from parabens, dyes, and artificial fragrances or perfumes
    Cons
    • Very pungent odor
    • Not recommended for use on pregnant, lactating, elderly, or baby dogs

    3. Virbac KetoChlor Medicated Shampoo for Dogs & Cats

    KetoChlor Medicated Shampoo for Dogs & Cats

    Key ingredients: Chlorhexidine gluconate, ketoconazole
    Size: 16 oz
    Fragrance: None

    The KetoChlor by Virbac medicated shampoo is another great option. This shampoo is specially formulated to help treat fungal and bacterial skin infections by disrupting the colonization of microorganisms on your dog’s skin. It contains chlorhexidine gluconate, an antiseptic, and ketoconazole, an antifungal, to help soothe and stop skin irritation on your pooch. The shampoo lathers and rinses easily and contains no obvious scent, making it ideal for sensitive dogs. While it’s expensive, it’s one of the best non-prescription shampoos for treating fungal and bacterial skin issues on your pooch.

    Pros
    • Specially formulated to help treat fungal and bacterial skin infections
    • Contains chlorhexidine gluconate and ketoconazole
    • Antifungal and antiseptic
    • Fragrance-free
    • Vet recommended
    • No prescription required
    Cons
    • Price

    4. TropiClean Hypo-Allergenic Gentle Coconut Puppy Shampoo

    TropiClean Hypo-Allergenic Gentle Coconut Puppy & Kitten Shampoo

    Key ingredients: Aloe, oatmeal, coconut
    Size: 20 oz
    Fragrance: Coconut

    If you’re looking for an anti-itch shampoo for your brand-new puppy, TropiClean Hypo-Allergenic Coconut Shampoo is a great option, as it’s specially formulated to be gentle on their developing, sensitive skin. It’s made from naturally soothing ingredients like aloe, oatmeal, and coconut and is perfectly pH balanced to be gentle on your puppy. This shampoo cleanses, moisturizes, and leaves your puppy’s coat smelling great with a pleasant coconut smell, and is free from soaps, parabens, and dyes.

    Some customers report that the smell of this shampoo is somewhat overpowering, especially for puppies, and dried their puppy’s coat out after a few washes.

    Pros
    • Inexpensive
    • Specially formulated for puppies
    • Made with natural ingredients
    • pH balanced
    • Free from soaps, parabens, and dyes
    Cons
    • Pungent odor
    • May dry out your puppy’s coat if used too much

    5. Douxo S3 CALM Soothing Skin Dog & Cat Shampoo

    Douxo S3 CALM Soothing Itchy, Hydrated Skin Dog & Cat Shampoo

    Key ingredients: Ophytrium, chlorhexidine
    Size: 7 ounces
    Fragrance: None

    Douxo S3 CALM Soothing Dog Shampoo is specially formulated to soothe irritated and itchy skin in both dogs and cats. It contains ophytrium, which helps strengthen your dog’s skin and restore the balance of delicate microbes to soothe irritation, and chlorhexidine, an antiseptic that helps heal any infection that has taken hold. The shampoo also helps moisturize and detangle your dog’s fur, giving them a shiny and silky coat, and is free from soaps, sulfates, parabens, dyes, and nanoparticles, making it ideal for sensitive pooches.

    While this shampoo is supposed to be scent-free, some customers reported a strange coconut odor after using it.

    Pros
    • Specially formulated to soothe irritated and itchy skin
    • Contains ophytrium and chlorhexidine
    • Helps moisturize and detangle your dog’s fur
    • Free from soaps, sulfates, parabens, dyes, and nanoparticles
    • Vet recommended
    Cons
    • Strange odor
    • Price

    6. Vetoquinol Aloe and Oatmeal Dog Shampoo

    Vetoquinol Itchy Dry Skin Aloe & Oatmeal Soap-Free Dog & Cat Shampoo

    Key ingredients: Aloe, oatmeal
    Size: 16 oz
    Fragrance: Coconut

    The Aloe and Oatmeal Shampoo for itchy, dry skin from Vetoquinol is specially formulated to soothe itchy skin in dogs and cats. The shampoo features soothing aloe and oatmeal, both proven ingredients to help soothe itchy skin and relieve the symptoms of allergies, and is 100% soap-free. The specialized formula adds moisture and cleans deeply without disturbing the natural oils on your dog’s coat. Plus, it has a subtle, calming coconut fragrance.

    Our only issue with this shampoo is the inclusion of Sodium Laureth Sulfate, which can provoke itching in some dogs.

    Pros
    • Contains soothing oatmeal and aloe
    • Soap-free formula
    • Vet recommended
    • Won’t disturb your dog’s coat’s natural oils
    • Pleasant coconut fragrance
    Cons
    • Contains Sodium Laureth Sulfate

    7. Malaseb Shampoo

    Malaseb Shampoo

    Key ingredients: Miconazole nitrate, chlorhexidine gluconate
    Size: 16 oz
    Fragrance: None

    This anti-itch dog shampoo from Malaseb is a prescription shampoo recommended by vets and specially formulated to help soothe your dog’s itchy skin. It contains chlorhexidine gluconate, which is an antiseptic that can help treat any bacterial infections and restore the natural bacterial balance on your dog’s skin, plus miconazole nitrate, which is highly effective against fungal infections. Just one wash with this shampoo is sure to reduce your dog’s itchy and irritated skin, but twice a week until the itchiness recedes is recommended.

    This shampoo is great but very expensive and requires a veterinary prescription to purchase.

    Pros
    • Vet recommended
    • Specially formulated to help soothe itchy skin
    • Contains antifungal and antiseptic properties
    • Fast-acting
    Cons
    • Price
    • Requires a prescription

    8. Burt’s Bees Oatmeal Shampoo with Colloidal Oat Flour & Honey for Dogs

    Burt's Bees Oatmeal Shampoo with Colloidal Oat Flour & Honey for Dogs

    Key ingredients: Oatmeal, honey, beeswax
    Size: 16 oz
    Fragrance: Honey

    Burt’s Bees has long been a trusted name in dog shampoo, and its Oatmeal Shampoo is a great option for dogs with itchy skin. It’s made with soothing ingredients like colloidal oat flour to help condition dry skin, honey to promote a healthy coat by regulating and retaining moisture in your dog’s hair follicles, and green tea extract to help strengthen the hair. It is completely pH balanced, plus contains 97% natural ingredients, and is free from artificial fragrances, chemicals, parabens, phthalates, petrolatum, or sodium lauryl sulfate. Lastly, the shampoo is made in the USA and comes in an 80% recycled bottle.

    Several customers reported that this shampoo has a very watery consistency and doesn’t lather very well so it is somewhat difficult to use.

    Pros
    • 97% natural ingredients
    • Contains colloidal oatmeal to condition dry skin
    • Added honey and green tea extract to strengthen hair follicles
    • pH balanced
    • Free from artificial fragrances and sodium lauryl sulfate
    Cons
    • Watery consistency
    • Doesn’t lather well

    9. Dechra MiconaHex+Triz Shampoo for Dogs & Cats

    MiconaHex+Triz Shampoo for Dogs & Cats

    Key ingredients: Miconazole nitrate USP, chlorhexidine gluconate
    Size: 16 oz
    Fragrance: None

    MiconaHex+Triz Dog Shampoo from Dechra is specially formulated to support healthy skin in dogs, with antimicrobial and antifungal properties. It contains miconazole nitrate USP, a powerful antifungal, plus chlorhexidine, an antiseptic that can help treat bacterial infections on your dog’s skin. It also contains ceramides to help moisturize, repair, and restore dry and damaged skin and give your pooch a shiny, healthy coat. The shampoo is made in the USA and is fragrance-free.

    A handful of customers reported that their dogs responded better to other shampoos.

    Pros
    • Specially formulated to support healthy skin in dogs
    • Antimicrobial and antifungal properties
    • Contains ceramides to help promote a healthy coat
    • Made in the USA
    • Vet recommended
    Cons
    • Price
    • Didn’t work for some dogs

    10. Vet’s Best Allergy Itch Relief Shampoo for Dogs

    Vet's Best Allergy Itch Relief Shampoo for Dogs

    Key ingredients: Aloe, oatmeal, tea tree oil
    Size: 16 oz
    Fragrance: Tea tree

    Vet’s Best Allergy and Itch Relief Shampoo is veterinarian-formulated to help provide relief from itching for your pooch. It contains exfoliating oatmeal to help remove dry skin, soothing aloe and d-limonene, and tea tree oil to help strengthen your dog’s coat and make them smell great. Gently moisturizes, cleans, and deodorizes your dog’s coat while soothing itchiness. Lastly, it contains soothing essential oils like lavender, neem seed oil, and vitamin E that all work together to ease your dog’s itchy symptoms gently.

    Some customers reported that this shampoo did not provide relief for their dog’s dry skin and had a pungent odor that remained after washing. It also does not lather very well, making it difficult to use, especially on large dogs.

    Pros
    • Veterinarian formulated
    • Contains soothing aloe, oatmeal, and tea tree
    • Safe to use with topical tick and flea treatments
    • Contains a blend of soothing essential oils
    Cons
    • Did not work for some customer’s dogs
    • Pungent odor
    • Doesn’t lather well

    11. Sulfodene Medicated Dog Shampoo & Conditioner

    Sulfodene Medicated Dog Shampoo & Conditioner

    Key ingredients: Aloe, sulfur
    Size: 12 ounces
    Fragrance: Green apple

    Sulfodene Medicated Dog Shampoo contains ingredients to help soothe any itching and flaking caused by allergies or skin infections. The shampoo contains real aloe to help soothe and moisturize your dog’s skin and leave their coat soft and shiny, plus sulfur, which is known to be effective in treating some scaling skin conditions in dogs. It’s effective yet gentle enough for regular use and suitable for dogs 12 weeks and older.

    This shampoo contains some undesirable ingredients, including sodium laureth sulfate and artificial colorants.

    Pros
    • Contains soothing aloe
    • Added sulfur
    • Suitable for dogs 12 weeks and older
    Cons
    • Very strong odor
    • Contains artificial colors
    • Contains sodium laureth sulfate

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    Buyer’s Guide: Choosing the Best Dog Shampoos for Itchy Skin

    Using a soothing shampoo to help relieve your dog’s itching skin is certainly helpful, but it’s also important to identify the underlying cause of your dog’s itching. Itching can be caused by fungal or bacterial infections, as well as fleas, ticks, and allergies, and addressing these causes is the first step in stopping your dog’s itching. Once you’ve identified the cause, you can go ahead and choose the right shampoo for your pooch. Depending on the severity of their condition, there are many types to choose from, some of which are potent and thus may need a prescription from your vet and others that are far milder and gentler for sensitive pooches.

    Ingredients

    When choosing an itch-relief shampoo for your pooch, the ingredients are the most important factor to consider. You’ll want the shampoo to contain as many natural ingredients as possible yet be effective enough to give your pooch some relief. Also, the shampoo should ideally be free from artificial ingredients and potentially harmful ingredients like Sodium Laureth Sulphate or artificial fragrances and colorants. Here are some ingredients known to help soothe your pooch and relieve the itching caused by fungal or bacterial infections:

    • Aloe vera
    • Coconut
    • Oatmeal
    • Tea tree oil
    • Lavender
    • Sulfur
    • Honey

    Reasons why your dog may have itchy skin

    Skin problems are unfortunately fairly common in dogs these days and can be caused by a multitude of reasons. Consulting with your vet is the best course of action if the itching is bothersome and accompanied by flaking skin, spots, or redness, but mild conditions can be relieved with the right shampoo. Here are some of the main causes of dry skin in dogs:

    Dry skin

    Dry skin is one of the most common reasons for itchy skin, and luckily, also the easiest to resolve. Dry skin can be caused by harsh weather, too much bathing, or using the wrong shampoos, and may even be a dietary issue. If shampoo does not solve the problem, there may be an issue with your dog’s diet.

    woman bathing cute pomeranian dog in the bath
    Image By: Peakstock, Shutterstock

    Diet

    While food allergies are somewhat rare in dogs, they do occur and may cause your dog’s skin to get itchy. The other issue is that food allergies can be very tricky to diagnose, and you may need to employ an elimination diet to find the cause or take your dog to the vet for testing. Nutritional deficiencies can also cause dry skin, which can lead to itching. Make sure your dog is getting a complete, balanced diet and loads of essential omega fatty acids for skin health, and this, combined with the right shampoo, may help resolve the issue.

    Allergies

    Environmental allergens are a common cause of itchy skin in dogs. This is usually seasonal and comes from the pollen or dust mites that appear annually, but they may also be allergic to something in or around your home or yard. Again, this can be very tricky to accurately diagnose, and you may need to go to a vet for testing.

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    Final Thoughts

    Any of the above dog shampoos are a great help if your pooch has itchy skin, but the Hepper Colloidal Oatmeal Pet Shampoo is our top choice overall. The shampoo features soothing aloe and oatmeal is soap-free, calming cucumber fragrance to leave your pooch smelling and feeling fresh.

    The Frisco Anti-Itch Shampoo is a great budget buy, according to our research. It cleans and deodorizes gently yet thoroughly contains aloe vera, coconut, and tea tree oil plus added vitamins A and E, as well as pro-vitamin B5 for coat and skin health.

    To stand the best chance of being effective you will need to follow the directions for shampooing on the product.  Some need to be left on for 10 minutes before washing off, for example.

    As a final note, remember, if you are using topical flea and tick products, to check the information on when you can bathe your pet or get them wet after you have applied it, as this varies with each parasite product.

    Itchy skin can be frustrating for both you and your pooch, and hopefully, our in-depth reviews have helped you find a remedy to help soothe your dog’s frustration! Did any of the above shampoos help soothe your dog’s itchy skin? Please let us know in the comments below!


    Featured Image Credit: David Herraez Calzada, Shutterstock

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