Have a stinky dog at home? Not only can malodors make being around your four-legged companion unpleasant, but it can also perfume your whole house. While some breeds are naturally more aromatic, some dogs have medical conditions that cause them to be smellier than usual. Whatever the reason for the odor, it can help to bathe your dog regularly.
However, there are countless dog shampoo products on the market. To help you in your search, we’ve compiled a list of reviews for the 10 best shampoos for dog odor control. We’ve also created a buyer’s guide of shampoo features to look for. Read on to find the best shampoo to help get your stinky friend smelling good again.
A Glance at the Winners of 2020
The 10 Best Shampoos for Dog Odor Control
1. Gerrard Larriett Pet Odor Eliminator Shampoo – Best Overall
Our best overall choice is the Gerrard Larriett Aromatherapy Pet Odor Eliminator Shampoo because it uses natural ingredients to clean and deodorize. The shampoo contains lavender oil, chamomile oil, aloe vera, vitamin E, and oats to naturally freshen and moisturize your dog’s skin and coat. It contains no chemical fragrances, dyes, or sudsing agents, so you don’t have to be concerned that your dog will have an allergic reaction. It also contains no bleach, which is harsh on a dog’s skin. This is an ideal shampoo if your dog is suffering from excessive itchiness or dry skin, as it’s a soothing, anti-itch shampoo.
Because of the natural ingredients in this shampoo, it doesn’t lather well, which will end up making you use more of the product at once.
2. Wahl Odor Control Shampoo – Best Value
The Wahl Odor Control Shampoo is one of the best shampoos for dog odor control for the money because it’s a concentrated formula that’s pH balanced. With such a concentrated formula, you don’t have to use as much of it at one time since it lathers well. The shampoo uses naturally-derived ingredients and is alcohol-free and paraben-free, so it’s gentle on your dog’s skin. This formula is specifically for deep cleaning and deodorizing, and it uses eucalyptus and spearmint to banish bad doggie odors. This shampoo is also made to be allergy friendly, especially since it’s free of harsh chemicals.
This might be too harsh for certain dogs with sensitive skin, so always try a small amount first to be sure your dog doesn’t have a reaction.
If your dog is suffering from odor due to a bacterial or fungal skin infection, then the PetHonesty Antibacterial and Anti-Odor Dog Shampoo is a great choice. The shampoo is anti-yeast, antibacterial, and antifungal so it can help treat skin conditions. The formula is veterinary-strength to heal your dog’s skin. It can treat hot spots and relieve itchy skin. It can also help heal infections and wounds. This is a great choice for dogs who have allergies and have scratched themselves to the point of creating wounds.
Though this product is supposed to include a pump, the manufacturer often forgets to include it. Also, for the shampoo to work properly, you have to use it consistently, and it can be inconvenient to have to bathe your dog frequently.
4. Nature’s Miracle Odor Control Dog Shampoo
The Nature’s Miracle Odor Control Natural Oatmeal Dog Shampoo is formulated with an odor-neutralizer and deodorizer, which helps eliminate bad smells. It also has oatmeal as a key ingredient to moisturize your dog’s skin and coat. It doesn’t contain any dyes or parabens that can irritate your dog’s skin. It’s also soap-free, which means it’s safe to use with topical flea and tick products.
5. Honeydew Oatmeal Pet Shampoo
The Honeydew Oatmeal Pet Shampoo is a great choice if you need a shampoo for dry, itchy skin. This is an all-natural anti-itch formula that’s gentle enough to use on puppies. The colloidal oatmeal soothes dry, flaky skin. The shampoo also contains conditioner to soften your dog’s fur. This formula has no harsh chemicals, dyes, or parabens, so you don’t have to be concerned about harmful ingredients.
The scent of the shampoo can be unpleasant for some. In sensitive dogs with allergies, this shampoo can cause itchy skin, so be sure to test it out on your dog in a small area first.
6. Paw Choice Dry Dog Shampoo
The Paw Choice Dry Dog Shampoo is a great option for odor control in between baths. It doesn’t have any harsh chemicals, sulfates, parabens, or alcohol. It has a natural, coconut-derived formula to help manage odor without being harsh on your dog’s skin. It’s easy to use too, with no rinsing or water needed.
Although this is helpful in between baths, it isn’t a substitute for thorough washing. It also has a strong chemical smell despite the natural ingredients. In some dogs, it leaves a greasy residue on their fur.
7. Naturel Promise Fresh & Soothing Shampoo
The Naturel Promise Fresh & Soothing Shampoo is a gentle coconut cleanser with oatmeal that is hydrating to your dog’s skin and coat. It’s made to freshen and moisturize without soaps and parabens. It’s safe to use with topical flea products.
This shampoo works best when it’s used frequently. On some dogs, it can dull their coats and leave a residue.
8. Fresh ‘n Clean Odor Control Dog Shampoo
The Fresh ‘n Clean Odor Control Dog Shampoo has a fresh scent that removes odor-causing oils. The ingredients are all natural, and there are no harsh chemicals, parabens, or dyes. It’s also pH-balanced to be gentle on your dog’s skin and coat.
Because of the way the shampoo strips oils from your dog’s skin and coat, it can make their skin itchy and sensitive. The bottle only has a small amount, so it doesn’t last long. The natural scent also isn’t potent enough and wears off quickly.
Other dog grooming products:
9. PierrePablo Natural Dog Shampoo
The PierrePablo Natural Dog Shampoo offers a lasting freshness that sticks around for several days. The formula is plant-derived, and all the ingredients are natural, so you don’t have to worry about harsh chemicals or parabens. It also uses colloidal oatmeal to moisturize your dog’s skin and coat.
This shampoo doesn’t help with dry skin in dogs, and in some dogs with allergies, it can even leave their skin itchy. It doesn’t have a very strong scent despite claims otherwise.
10. Hartz Groomer’s Odor Control Dog Shampoo
The Hartz Groomer’s Odor Control Dog Shampoo contains no parabens or alcohols that could harm your dog’s skin. It has a strong, deodorizing scent of green apple.
This formula contains chemicals, dyes, and perfumes that can be harsh on your dog’s skin. It can cause itchy skin and hair loss in some dogs. It also can irritate dogs’ eyes, so take care not to wash your dog’s face with this shampoo.
To help you know what to look for when shopping for dog odor shampoos, we’ve created a buyer’s guide.
Natural vs. Artificial Fragrances
It’s important to look for natural fragrances in dog shampoos for odor control because artificial ones only mask the odor temporarily. Natural ingredients like lavender or tea tree oil can treat some of the underlying causes of dog odor.
Best of all, natural ingredients are less likely to cause an allergic reaction, like artificial perfumes can. If your dog’s skin reacts to the artificial scent, it can cause dandruff, excessive scratching, dry skin, and hair loss. An allergic reaction can lead to a skin infection, which can cause your dog’s odor to become even worse.
Natural ingredients that make the dog shampoo smell good often have antibacterial and skin-calming properties, which can treat many underlying causes of dog odor.
Although you do want the shampoo to clean your dog’s coat of dirt and grime, harsh soap can be drying to your dog’s skin. Dry skin can only worsen odor problems, so it’s best to seek out natural cleaning agents.
Examples of natural cleaning agents in dog shampoos are oatmeal, coconut, or salicylic acid. These also have healing and soothing properties that can improve the health of your dog’s skin, as well as make their coat shiny and clean.
If you have a dog with sensitive skin or they are already dealing with a skin condition, then it’s best to thoroughly research the shampoo’s ingredients. Chemical additives like paraben can be harmful over time to a dog’s neurological and reproductive systems.
Other chemicals are harsh on the skin and can trigger an allergic reaction. If you’re concerned that your dog will react badly to shampoo with chemical additives, then it’s best to look for an organic or all-natural shampoo.
Along with doggie odor, your dog may be dealing with another condition, such as dandruff, dry skin, or skin irritation. If this is the case, many dog odor shampoos offer multiple benefits. Be sure to check the label to see what other conditions the shampoo treats.
If the shampoo contains oatmeal, it’s a good bet that the shampoo is meant to treat skin conditions, so this ingredient is one to look for.
Our best overall choice is the Gerrard Larriett Aromatherapy Pet Odor Eliminator Shampoo because only natural ingredients are used to deodorize and clean your dog’s coat. It contains no chemical fragrances, dyes, or sudsing agents, so you don’t have to be concerned that your dog will have an allergic reaction. It’s also an anti-itch shampoo.
Our best value choice is the Wahl 820003A Odor Control Shampoo because it is a highly-concentrated formula that uses naturally-derived ingredients to clean and deodorize. It’s made to be allergy friendly and uses the strong scents of eucalyptus and spearmint to counter doggie odors.
We hope that our list of reviews and buyer’s guide for the best shampoos for dog odor control have helped you find the best one for your own stinky pup.
Featured image credit: Naturel Promise Fresh & Soothing for All Breeds of Dogs, Amazon
Emily started this blog out of pure passion. She LOVES her 3 dogs; Chew Barka, Cooper & Nelson, and spends countless hours every day playing with them.
When she’s not nerding out on dogs, you’ll find her on a snowboard or in the kitchen baking chocolate brownies.
She’s been featured in PetAware, Dogtime, and ModernDog.
- A Glance at the Winners of 2020
- The 10 Best Shampoos for Dog Odor Control
- 1. Gerrard Larriett Pet Odor Eliminator Shampoo – Best Overall
- 2. Wahl Odor Control Shampoo – Best Value
- 3. PetHonesty Anti-Odor Dog Shampoo – Premium Choice
- 4. Nature’s Miracle Odor Control Dog Shampoo
- 5. Honeydew Oatmeal Pet Shampoo
- 6. Paw Choice Dry Dog Shampoo
- 7. Naturel Promise Fresh & Soothing Shampoo
- 8. Fresh ‘n Clean Odor Control Dog Shampoo
- 9. PierrePablo Natural Dog Shampoo
- 10. Hartz Groomer’s Odor Control Dog Shampoo
- Buyer’s Guide
- Natural vs. Artificial Fragrances
- Cleaning Agents
- Harmful Chemicals
- Additional Uses