Homemade Dog Shampoo Recipe

Updated on March 7, 2013

Why are you interested in making homemade dog shampoo?

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Reasons to Make Homemade Dog Wash

Some people may choose to make homemade dog shampoo in an effort to save money and others may want to live a chemical free life. However, like me, most people consider homemade dog wash because their dog has sensitive skin. I was noticing that my fourteen year old chocolate Labrador Retriever's skin was getting more sensitive and dry as he got older. Since I bathe my dogs frequently in an attempt to avoid chemical flea treatments, I had to find a dog wash that helped soothe my older dog's skin.

I had purchased oatmeal shampoos from the store, but realized I could probably make my own oatmeal shampoos for a fraction of the cost. The store bought brands also had chemicals in them and for months I have been working on reducing the amount of chemicals in my home by making homemade cleaning products and laundry products, so making homemade shampoo seemed like a good next step in a more chemical-free home!

Homemade Dog Wash

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Final dog shampoo can be stored in a large mason jar and kept in the refrigeratorIngredients for homemade dog shampoo in blender ready to be mixedHomemade dog shampoo being blendedOatmeal dog shampoo is smooth but not super sudsy
Final dog shampoo can be stored in a large mason jar and kept in the refrigerator
Final dog shampoo can be stored in a large mason jar and kept in the refrigerator | Source
Ingredients for homemade dog shampoo in blender ready to be mixed
Ingredients for homemade dog shampoo in blender ready to be mixed | Source
Homemade dog shampoo being blended
Homemade dog shampoo being blended | Source
Oatmeal dog shampoo is smooth but not super sudsy
Oatmeal dog shampoo is smooth but not super sudsy | Source

Simple Oatmeal Dog Shampoo Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup whole natural oats
  • 4 cup of warm water
  • 1 tsp Castile or other gentle soap or oil
  • 1 TBSP fresh rosemary (optional)
  • 1/4 cup baking soda (optional)

Directions: Place all the items into a blender and blend until smooth. Place blended mixture in a mason jar and store in the refrigerator. (This dog wash will NOT store well in a soap dispenser or regular shampoo bottle). When ready to bathe your dog, wet your dog's coat with warm water, pour on oatmeal dog wash and rub into the coat. Let it sit on the dog's skin for a few minutes, if possible. Rinse thoroughly with warm water.

Homemade Flea Prevention After Bath Spray

Boil three cups of water, two large lemon slices and teaspoon of salt for two minutes and then let cool for 24 hours. Once cooled, place in a spray bottle and spray your dog's coat every day. You can also add essential oils and a few drops of soap to the mixture as well.

Flea Fighting Shampoo Recipe

Fleas can't survive in warm water or soap, so if you wash your dog with warm water and Dawn dish liquid you will easily (and inexpensively) kill fleas that are on your dog. You should comb your dog before bathing, scrub well during bathing and comb again after bathing if you really want to stop a flea infestation.

Although a small amount of dish liquid as dog wash won't usually dry our your dog's skin, frequent bathing with it can cause drier skin. The flea bites may also cause skin irritation. By making a homemade dog shampoo with the following ingredients, you can fight fleas, prevent more fleas, and relieve your dog's skin.

Ingredient Suggestions:

  • Mint
  • Essential oils (lavender and rosemary are highly recommended)
  • Lemon juice
  • Apple Cider Vinegar

Directions for flea fighting dog wash:

  1. For every 2 cups of hot water, add a teaspoon of any or all of the above ingredients. ( I don't recommend mixing the apple cider vinegar and lemon since the smell is not appealing and it may become too acidic).
  2. Add 1-2 teaspoons of baby shampoo, Castile liquid soap or other mild dish washing soap to mixture.
  3. Mix well with a paint stirrer and store in a tightly sealed container.
  4. Use the homemade dog wash and warm water when bathing your dog and try to let the wash sit on the dog's fur and skin for at least five minutes before rinsing.

This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. It is not meant to substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, or formal and individualized advice from a veterinary medical professional. Animals exhibiting signs and symptoms of distress should be seen by a veterinarian immediately.

Questions & Answers

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      • profile image

        mary jo west 

        9 months ago

        i mixed Dr. Bronner's Pure-Castile Liquid Soap - Baby Unscented,an jojoba oil,some vegetable glycerin,2 cap full thieves household cleaner, bout 5 drops,lavender oil,lemon oil,citronelle oil,purification oil all young living.make bout 8 oz. lathers up good. works great. grest for small dog it dont take much...

      • profile image

        Shaina 

        3 years ago

        Excellent recipe! I would recommend blending the oatmeal and water first before adding the soap, mine got so foamy it was hard to break down the oatmeal thoroughly, or maybe my blender isn't the best also! Thanks for sharing!

      • chrissieklinger profile imageAUTHOR

        chrissieklinger 

        4 years ago from Pennsylvania

        The shampoo does not lather a lot but does lather a little bit. I get my Castile soap from Amazon.com. I agree lavender is a great substitution for the rosemary, if needed, due to health issues.

      • profile image

        Steph 

        4 years ago

        i wouldn't put the rosemary in it because i have read in many things that rosemary should be "avoided on dogs that are prone to seizures or with epilepsy." Lavender is good for them and also fleas hate lavender!

      • profile image

        Jahni 

        4 years ago

        Thanks for the recipe! My dog has been going crazy trying to scratch because he's been itching so badly! Where do you buy your Castile soap from? Again, thank you :)

      • profile image

        kristina 

        4 years ago

        Will the shampoo recipe lather lime normal shampoo?

      • profile image

        Adrienne 

        4 years ago

        I just tried this and LOVE it!! My dogs fur feels like velvet!!!

      • chrissieklinger profile imageAUTHOR

        chrissieklinger 

        4 years ago from Pennsylvania

        Juan I am not sure what this would be in ml ..... Maybe you can find a mathematical equation to convert the recipe ..... Best of luck on your project!

      • profile image

        juan 

        4 years ago

        for how many mililiters is this for, thank you, its for my science fair project

      • chrissieklinger profile imageAUTHOR

        chrissieklinger 

        5 years ago from Pennsylvania

        Since I have large dogs, I make a large mason jar full and go through it in less than a month. It will likely keep for up to two months in the fridge. I use 1/2-1 cup of the stuff for one bath but depending on your dog's size and fur you could use more or less. It is so easy and cheap to make, that I usually put it on quite heavy.

      • profile image

        Cathy 

        5 years ago

        How will it keep in refrigerator and how much doe you use for each bath? Thanks!

      • chrissieklinger profile imageAUTHOR

        chrissieklinger 

        5 years ago from Pennsylvania

        I live in PA on 5 acres with lots of open field and wooded area and the ticks are very bad every year. I have not found anything to deter the ticks. I check my dogs constantly and usually get the ticks off before they get deep into the dog's skin. I would imagine that if a tick did get into your dog's skin and when pulled off, left a wound, this wash would be soothing and not irritate the tick bite.

      • Sugahware profile image

        Robyn D Bera 

        5 years ago from California

        I'm absolutely going to try your flea wash as I'm heading into flea season here in northern California. Will it work for ticks too?

      • chrissieklinger profile imageAUTHOR

        chrissieklinger 

        5 years ago from Pennsylvania

        StoneCircle- sometimes you have to use harsher shampoo to really clean and get rid of the mud and fleas, but this is great for soothing the dog's skin!

      • StoneCircle profile image

        Susan McLeish 

        5 years ago from Rindge, NH

        This will be a great recipe addition to both of my pugs bath time. Especially with flea & mud season just around the corner.

      • profile image

        Bethany Williams 

        5 years ago

        Good topic! :)

      • chrissieklinger profile imageAUTHOR

        chrissieklinger 

        6 years ago from Pennsylvania

        If you store it in the fridge in a steralized mason jar it should last for one month. I have three dogs so I go through it quickly. If the jar is not steralized properly or left out of the fridge for too long, it could develop bacteria.

      • profile image

        iefa 

        6 years ago

        Hi, how long can i store this oatmeal shampoo in fridge? can it long last for 1 month? or only 1 week?

      • chrissieklinger profile imageAUTHOR

        chrissieklinger 

        6 years ago from Pennsylvania

        It is amazing the things we can make at home in just a few minutes. Like I commented before the biggest downfall for me is getting my dog to allow it to soak for awhile. Whether it is homemade or store bought it really works best when it can get through the coat and into the animal's skin.

      • Thundermama profile image

        Catherine Taylor 

        6 years ago from Canada

        Wonderful hub, like many people here i have tried making my own laundry soap and shampoo, but hadn't thought about doing it for my dog. Can't wait to try this.

      • jennzie profile image

        Jenn 

        6 years ago from Pennsylvania

        I have a hairless Chinese Crested who like all dogs of the breed has sensitive skin so this sounds like it would work well for her. Very useful hub- will have to bookmark this.

      • chrissieklinger profile imageAUTHOR

        chrissieklinger 

        6 years ago from Pennsylvania

        If you grow your own herbs toss them in there to get a nice smell! I am actually contemplating trying it on my own hair because it seems so smooth when I rub it on the dog.

      • chrissieklinger profile imageAUTHOR

        chrissieklinger 

        6 years ago from Pennsylvania

        You might want to have a skin test done. We had a dog once that had to go on and off steroids because of severe skin problems. Hope this helps....and if it doesn't at least you didn't spend a lot of money trying it.

      • chrissieklinger profile imageAUTHOR

        chrissieklinger 

        6 years ago from Pennsylvania

        I works best when it can sit on the dog's skin and coat and then be fully rinsed. If you have a smaller dog who is calm, I'm sure they will benefit greatly from it. My 14 year old lab is still not very cooperative during bath time and tries to escape the entire time. it would be so nice if I could just get him to lay in the tub and take a soak....LOL!

      • Natashalh profile image

        Natasha 

        6 years ago from Hawaii

        I haven't made dog shampoo before, but I used to create a sort of rosemary tea to rinse the dogs with. I hadn't thought about it in a couple of years, but your hub made me remember! I love recipes for things like this - thanks for sharing it.

      • Victoria Lynn profile image

        Victoria Lynn 

        6 years ago from Arkansas, USA

        My dog has sensitive skin and nothing seems to help. I'll have to try this. You can thank Just Ask Susan for the share!

      • Just Ask Susan profile image

        Susan Zutautas 

        6 years ago from Ontario, Canada

        Both my dogs have sensitive skin and I usually buy oatmeal shampoo from the vet. I just ran out of the shampoo so I'll try your recipe.

        Sharing, pinning and more.

      • chrissieklinger profile imageAUTHOR

        chrissieklinger 

        6 years ago from Pennsylvania

        Rachel- time is money and I decided to invest the time in dealing with the fleas. For some people they really don't have the time to fight fleas naturally, but I feel blessed that I do. I am having fun making homemade products for my family and my dogs. I hope to see some hubs on your homemade soaps!

      • Farmer Rachel profile image

        Rachel Koski 

        6 years ago from Pennsylvania, now farming in Minnesota

        This is awesome information. I've been making my own soap for bathing, and just starting using my homemade soaps to make dish soap and laundry soap. Now I'm inspired to make dog soap! I don't wash my dog that frequently because she always goes and rolls in horse dung or mud right after, but we have been spending the money every month for the expensive chemical flea and tick treatments. It's great to learn that I can get rid of the fleas using natural methods! Thanks for this hub, voted it up and more and shared and pinned!

      • profile image

        JThomp42 

        6 years ago

        Very interesting. May have to try this.

      • chrissieklinger profile imageAUTHOR

        chrissieklinger 

        6 years ago from Pennsylvania

        I hope it works well for your dog. My dog is not real cooperative when I bathe him so I never can let it sit for five minutes on his skin to really get the full benefits!

      • profile image

        4youreyes 

        6 years ago

        Chrissie,

        Great recipes I will be given this a try for my dog. I like that it's natural and I can save money. Thanks !

        Have A Good Day !

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