If you have a dog, you know one of the biggest problems they face is fleas. They are difficult to kill and can quickly spread throughout your house. One of your best defenses against these fleas is a good shampoo, but there are so many different brands, it can be difficult to find the best one for your pet.
We’ve chosen several of the toughest brands against fleas to review for you so you can see the difference between them. We’ll give you the pros and cons of each one and tell you how they worked on our dogs. We’ve even included a short buyer’s guide where we discuss what you should look for if you continue to shop so you can make an informed purchase.
A Quick Comparison of Our Favorites in 2023
|Best Overall||Natural Chemistry Flea & Tick||
|Best Overall||Hartz UltraGuard Rid Flea & Tick||
|Premium Choice||Harris Eco-Friendly Flea & Tick||
|Miracle Care De Flea Shampoo||
|Dog Whisperer Dog Flea & Tick||
The 8 Best Flea Shampoos for Dogs
1. Natural Chemistry Natural Flea & Tick Shampoo for Dogs – Best Overall
|Main Ingredient:||Cedar oil|
Natural Chemistry Natural Flea & Tick Shampoo for Dogs is our pick as the best overall flea shampoo for dogs. It features real oatmeal, which helps soothe the skin, and it kills fleas, ticks, black flies, and even mosquitos for up to seven days after you use it without using harsh chemicals, so it’s safe to use on any dogs, even puppies. Since it relies on natural ingredients instead of chemicals, it won’t interact with other flea medication your pet might be taking, and we found that it has a pleasant smell that won’t overpower your room.
The downside to Natural Chemistry is that it doesn’t produce any lather, so it can be challenging to make sure you get everywhere, and you tend to use a little more product, which already runs out pretty quickly.
2. Hartz UltraGuard Rid Flea & Tick Oatmeal Dog Shampoo – Best Value
Hartz UltraGuard Rid Flea & Tick Oatmeal Dog Shampoo is our pick as the best flea shampoo for dogs for the money. It uses oatmeal to help moisturize the skin and soothe it from painful flea bites. It kills fleas and ticks on contact, and the ergonomic bottle is easy to use and doesn’t spill, so there is no waste. We like that it comes with a flea comb which helps with the bath, and it will also help you detect them faster in the future.
The only downside we experienced while using the Hartz brands was that it has a bad odor, and some harsh chemicals make it unsafe to use on puppies and cats.
Related Read: Hartz Dog Shampoo Review
3. Harris Eco-Friendly Flea & Tick Dog & Cat Shampoo – Premium Choice
|Main Ingredient:||Cottonseed Oil|
Harris Eco-Friendly Flea & Tick Dog & Cat Shampoo is our premium choice flea shampoo for dogs. It uses cottonseed, clove, and castor oil to kill fleas and clean your dog without the need for harsh chemicals. It’s safe to use on puppies and won’t interfere with any flea and tick medication your pet is currently taking. It’s also biodegradable and won’t damage the environment.
We liked the Harris brand, and the only problem we had besides its higher cost was that it has a bad smell some pet owners might not enjoy.
4. Miracle Care De Flea Shampoo for Dogs & Puppies – Best Flea Shampoo for Puppies
Miracle Care De Flea Shampoo for Dogs & Puppies is our pick as the best flea shampoo for puppies. It uses a mild formula that’s safe to use on puppies older than 12 weeks. It won’t irritate your pet’s skin, and you can use it as frequently as once every three days until the fleas are gone. It’s easy to use and comes in a durable bottle that won’t leak or spill.
The downside to Miracle Care is that it doesn’t lather well, so it can be hard to tell where you have already cleaned. It also has a bad smell that some pet owners might not like, and though it does not bother our pet’s skin, some owners might prefer a brand without chemical ingredients.
5. Dog Whisperer Dog Flea & Tick Shampoo
|Main Ingredient:||Coconut Based Castile Soap|
Dog Whisperer Dog Flea & Tick Shampoo comes in a two-pack, so you get plenty, and it’s well suited to multi-pet families. It’s easy to use and produces enough lather to see where you’re cleaning, and it leaves your pet with a pleasant fragrance when you’re finished. There are no harsh chemicals or pesticides to worry about, and the coconut-based Castille soap effectively kills both fleas and ticks.
The biggest downside to dog Whisperer is that it contains several essential oils, and some dogs can be sensitive to them, especially the peppermint and lemongrass, which might irritate your pet’s skin.
6. Adams Plus Flea & Tick Aloe & Cucumber Scent Foaming Dog Shampoo
Adams Plus Flea & Tick Aloe & Cucumber Scent Foaming Dog Shampoo is another chemical-based formula that provides you with a gentle shampoo for your pet’s skin that is safe for puppies twelve weeks and older. It has an aloe and cucumber scent that shouldn’t bother pets or their owners, and it comes in an easy-to-use drip-free container.
The Adams brand effectively removes fleas and shouldn’t bother your pet’s skin. Still, the downside is that many people may be afraid of the chemical ingredients, especially when natural shampoos are available. The small bottle size will also be unsuitable for some larger dog breeds.
7. Bio-Groom Flea & Tick Dog Shampoo
The Bio-Groom Flea & Tick Dog Shampoo comes in a one-gallon bottle, and you can also get a 2-gallon pack, so it’s one of the largest amounts on this list, making it a perfect choice for large breeds and homes with several dogs. It’s pH-balanced, so it shouldn’t bother your pet’s skin, and it promotes a soft and shiny coat.
The primary downside to this shampoo is that it uses a chemical ingredient to kill fleas instead of a natural one, which can cause some pet owners to avoid it. Also, it can be quite expensive and more than you need if you only have a small dog because of the large gallon size.
8. Sentry Flea & Tick Tropical Breeze Shampoo for Dogs
Sentry Flea & Tick Tropical Breeze Shampoo for Dogs is one of the lowest-cost shampoos on this list, and it kills fleas and ticks while cleaning and softening your pet’s fur. It has a pleasant fragrance and comes in multiple sizes, so you can get it in the 18-ounce bottle or the gallon size if you have several pets.
The downside to the Sentry Flea & Tick shampoo is that it uses chemical ingredients that can interfere with any flea and tick medication your pet is already taking. It’s also not that effective, so it might take several baths to notice a difference in the number of fleas on your pet.
Buyer’s Guide: Selecting The Best Dog Shampoo for Fleas
Flea Dog Shampoo Ingredients
Chemical Ingredients in Dog Shampoo
You will find several chemical ingredients like permethrin, methoprene, and others. These chemicals can be extremely effective against fleas, and if your pet only gets fleas occasionally, it can be a great solution. However, if your dog spends a lot of time outside and picks up fleas several times each year, the chemicals may start to affect your pet, and it may suffer from dry and itchy skin, among other things. Another problem with these shampoos is that manufacturers add other chemicals as well, like powerful fragrances, that can cause other problems for your pet.
If your dog is taking a medication like Frontline, or one of the many others, a chemical-based shampoo might interfere and make them less effective, so we recommend choosing one of the other types.
Essential Oils in Dog Shampoo
Several essential oils, like lemongrass, can be a great substitute for chemical ingredients, and they can make a great choice if your dog occasionally catches fleas. Shampoos that use these oils often leave your pet smelling nice, sometimes for several days after the bath. However, many essential oils, including lemongrass, can be harmful to your dog if you use them too frequently.
Dog Shampoo Natural Ingredients
Natural shampoos usually use cottonseed or castor oil to help eliminate the fleas and ticks in your dog’s coat, and they also help make it soft and shiny. They are less dangerous to your pet’s health than the other options we looked at, so they are a great choice for someone with a dog that catches fleas every time it leaves the house. The downside to these shampoos is that they usually aren’t as effective as the others, so you will likely need to give your pet more than one bath to eliminate the fleas.
Dog Shampoo Bottle Size
Once you choose your cleaning ingredient, your next step will likely determine bottle size. We recommend getting more than you think you need, especially if you choose a natural brand or one that uses essential oils because you will usually need to use more and may need to give the pet more than one bath.
Dog Shampoo Fragrance
Almost all shampoos seem to include some fragrance to help the dog smell better when you are finished bathing. However, fragrance can be bad for your pet, especially from essential oils or chemicals. However, a bath here and there isn’t likely to do much damage, so it only becomes a big concern if your dog always seems to have fleas.
Other Things You Can Do For Dog Fleas
When choosing your next flea shampoo for dogs, we highly recommend our pick as the best overall. Natural Chemistry Natural Flea & Tick Shampoo for Dogs is extremely effective and contains no harsh chemicals. It smells nice and is easy to use. Another smart choice is our pick for the best value. Hartz UltraGuard Rid Flea & Tick Oatmeal Dog Shampoo is inexpensive and comes with a flea brush that will help you remove the fleas as you bathe and check your results later.
Featured Image Credit: Masarik, Shutterstock