A Groomer’s Guide to Pet Shampoo Bars

If you’re trying to be as sustainable as possible, that goal has probably filtered into every aspect of your life. Our pets can have a greener paw print too, and switching from ordinary pet shampoo in a plastic bottle to bar soap can make a huge difference.

Dog and cat skin has a different pH from human skin however, so you can’t just grab any old human bar of soap and scrub them down. The best thing for their health and well being is to use a soap designed for their skin.

Here are our top 3 favorite pet shampoo bars, tried and tested by a dog groomer with over ten years of experience.

Best Shampoo Bar for Sensitive Skin

If your pet has fleas or is chronically itchy, DERMAGIC Skin Rescue Dog Shampoo does a great job of bringing your pet relief. I admit, although many people reported that the product smells good, I thought it smelled like an herbalist’s medicine cabinet and didn’t really enjoy it.

Regardless, this shampoo bar did provide immediate relief to hotspots, fleabites, and other skin issues I tested it on. It came in a cardboard box with no plastic, but as I bought it at a pet store I don’t know if it would ship plastic free. Amazon notes that they are “Climate Pledge Friendly.”

Best degreasers for dogs and cats

My favorite shampoo bar of all was the Chubbs bars. The results on any type of dog or cat coat was fantastic! No one felt itchy after a bath, and their coats felt very clean and soft. The bars come in a range of scents, all which smell good–but don’t transfer well to the pet.

This doesn’t bother me, but if you’re hoping your dog will smell like vanilla after being washed in the vanilla scented shampoo, he won’t. The dog’s smell like plain bar soap when fully rinsed.

Unfortunately, this shipped to me with a thin layer of plastic across the bar itself, which was disappointing.

Best dog shampoo for the planet

The Bow Wow Bar by Ethique is the best dog shampoo bar strictly in terms of planetary costs. They are carbon neutral, vegan, cruelty free, and plant a tree for every order. The packaging is completely plastic free, and each shampoo bar protects the planet from about 3 plastic bottles.

The shampoo bar itself is average. It cleans the coat, doesn’t leave them itchy, and rinses easily. It leaves a slight scent on the pet, but does nothing special in terms of special needs coats. If your dog has a normal coat and doesn’t need degreased/sensitive skin shampoo etc. this shampoo is fine.

I will continue to try and test out new shampoo bars to give reports on how well they do, both for planet and pet, but since I don’t buy them just to test them it takes a long time to try a new bar. This will be updated as I do use up my current product and try a different one.

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