5 best dog shampoos for dandruff


Have you noticed white flakes coming from your dog? You might have seen these as your pet hops from the couch or before cleaning his bed. These are dandruff and before you wonder if animals get dandruff, too, yes they do and it can be very itchy. It’s actually a sign of skin dryness.

The cause of canine dandruff varies, depending on its severity but the common cause is dry skin. You may live in a cold region where humidity is lacking. This eventually causes the skin to become dry. Other possible causes are parasites and bacterial or fungal infections. Besides excessive itching, here are the signs that your pooch has dandruff:

  • Greasiness on some spots of the skin
  • Loss of hair in certain areas
  • Skin appears to be thick
  • Inflammation on folds of the skin
  • Bumps and spots that look like pimples
  • Unusual odor coming from the affected area

Most vets do not immediately prescribe antibiotics especially if the dryness is mild. Using medicated shampoos is a better option. Looking for the best product to use for your fur baby? Below are some of our suggestions:

1. Mika Pets Oatmeal and Aloe Pet Shampoo



Pros: The main ingredient is colloidal oatmeal, which is better than the simple oatmeal extract because it provides better absorption than the latter. Colloidal oatmeal helps with itchy skin because of its soothing effect. Oatmeal is commonly used in skincare products because it comes with compounds that help retain the natural moisture of the skin.

Many dogs suffer from skin dryness and dandruff caused by a number of factors, including allergies, bacterial infections, and nutrition. Regardless of the culprit, it helps to use a shampoo like this one from Mika Pets.

Cons: It has a very minimal scent so you may need to bathe your pooch a bit more or leave the shampoo a little longer to remove any unwanted odor. But this one is highly recommended if you are after pet products with a light scent.

2. Medicated Shampoo from Veterinary Formula Clinical Care


Pros: It promotes faster healing because it’s formulated with strong ingredients such as salicylic acid and micronized sulfur. It also has coal tar, a thick liquid often used in topical medications because it’s effective in treating seborrheic dermatitis or dandruff.

Coal tar is the main ingredient of many anti-dandruff shampoo brands for humans and it’s just as effective when applied on pets. If your pet has developed scaling, coal tar can provide relief because it is antifungal and anti-parasitic. For a 16-ounce bottle, this one is among the most budget-friendly shampoos you can find online.

Cons: It should avoid contact with eyes because of the strong ingredients. Since it’s a medicated shampoo, it’s best to use it with the guidance of a veterinarian.

3. Zesty Paws Dog Shampoo



Pros: Like the first one on the list, this shampoo also contains aloe and oat but it also has Vitamin E and Vitamin C in it, which are both beneficial for faster healing of the skin. Vitamin E-infused supplements and topicals are often prescribed by vets because this vitamin works as an antioxidant that helps repair the skin from damage.

Vitamin C on the other hand, supports the growth of new tissues and therefore works wonders in wound healing. If your dog keeps on scratching his skin because of dandruff, he may develop wounds or scratches. It helps to use a gentle shampoo like this to prevent that from happening.

Cons:It may not be the perfect product to use for intense itching and dandruff. But for mild itching and for dandruff prevention, this might be worth checking out.

4. GreenGroom Dog Shampoo for Dandruff



Pros: If you have many dogs at home, you may need a gallon like this one. For its price, it’s definitely a great deal. While the price is cheap, the shampoo is actually formulated with biodegradable ingredients so it will not irritate your pet’s skin.

It is made with surfactants like amphoteric surfactant that’s also used in shampoos for human babies because of its conditioning effect. Aside from reducing dandruff, you can use this if you want to help in soothing the skin. The coat will look healthier and enriched. As per the manufacturer, the product is handcrafted in small batches to ensure its high quality.

Cons: It’s not suitable for all ages of dogs. The directions mentioned that it’s only safe for pets eight weeks and older. As long as you follow directions, there should not be a problem using it. The instruction says it should be diluted before application.

5. PetAg Dandruff Shampoo



Pros: It’s a bang for the buck, because it’s among the budget-friendly choices you can find on Amazon. Although it’s cheap, there were many positive reviews given to it, mainly because it works well in eliminating dandruff.

PetAg is an Illinois-based company with a wide range of products for both cats and dogs, so you can swear by the quality of their shampoo line. One of the key ingredients of this product is rooibos extract which is known for its skin-relief and calming benefits. It works best for dry skin, a problem that often comes with dandruff.

Cons: The scent is very light so you may need to lather a bit more to get rid of any unwanted odors from your pet’s skin and coat. The problem with dandruff is that it is often associated with the stinky smell because of oil buildup on the skin.

But if your dog has sensitive skin, a mildly scented shampoo like this one can work wonders. It has song ingredients such as glycerin and salicylic acid, but this should not be a problem especially if a dog does not have sensitive skin.

What to Know about Dog Dandruff

Dandruff in dogs is not just limited to white flakes. Some pets, even if they have a shiny and healthy coat, may itch like crazy all of a sudden. The possible causes are allergy to food or something they have come in contact with. If you suspect it’s because of fleas, the best thing to do is to conduct flea control once a month. Brushing your dog with a flea comb is the easiest way to confirm it.

But if the vet eliminated fleas and mites as the exact causes, the most possible reason could be an allergy. You might want to alter your dog’s diet or change the dog food you’re giving.

Having your dog fully checked by a vet is the best way to help treat skin dryness. Get to the bottom of the problem so you will know which shampoo will truly address it. Also take note that there’s “walking dandruff” that is worse than regular dandruff and can be highly contagious.


Dandruff in dogs is often associated with itching. Hence, it helps to use a shampoo with soothing effects. The strong formulation may help pets with severe itching. However, you might want to consider products with natural ingredients if your buddy has sensitive skin.


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