Picking out the right shampoo for your cat or dog doesn’t have to be a daunting task. To choose the right product, you first need to have a good idea of what you are trying to accomplish with a bath. Are you looking for general cleaning, trying to get rid of external parasites, or treating a medical problem like a skin infection or excessive flaking caused by seborrhea? Next, refer to the table below to see a list of common medicated shampoos for cats. Finally, use the links in this buyer’s guide or browse VetDepot's selection of pet grooming supplies to find what you need.
If all you need to do is remove dirt and mild odors from your pet's coat, pick a gentle shampoo that contains moisturizers so you won’t have to worry about drying out their skin. Avoid heavily fragranced products. If your dog or cat has a strong body odor, they may have a skin infection or other health concern that warrants a trip to the vet. Shampoos like PhytoVet EFA that contain omega fatty acids or aloe and oatmeal like Vedco Aloe & Oatmeal Shampoo are great choices.
Pets that suffer from environmental allergies need to be bathed regularly to wash pollen, mold spores, dust mites and other potential triggers out of their coats. Anti-Allergen Solution Pet Shampoo by The Ecology Works should do the trick. Some also claim to be hypoallergenic, which might be helpful if your pet is sensitive to ingredients that are commonly included in other pet shampoos.
Pet Medicated Shampoos
Bathing is an important part of treating bacterial or fungal skin infections and diseases that cause excessive flakiness and/or a very greasy coat. The table below outlines the active ingredients and their uses in common medicated shampoos that are used to treat some or all of these conditions.
Try to find a shampoo that is aimed at your pet's particular problem versus one that has a broader spectrum of activity. Make very sure that any product you pick is labeled for use on your species of pet. Some ingredients in the dog-only shampoos are very toxic to cats. Closely follow the directions on the shampoo’s label. Most require that you leave the lather on your pet’s skin for five to ten minutes before rinsing. You may also have to bathe your pet every few days for a week or two before you start to see significant results. A veterinarian is your best resource for diagnosing any skin conditions that your pet might have and for recommending the right products to treat it.
Common Medicated Shampoos for Pets