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The Flea Shampoo for Dogs: Complete Guide + 6 Top Products

Katelyn Son

By

Medically reviewed by

Ivana Crnec, DVM

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See our advertising disclosure.

Best Flea Shampoos for Dogs Summary

Do Flea Shampoos Work on Dogs?

Do Flea Shampoos Work on Dogs

Yes, the flea shampoo for dogs works. However, the exact effectiveness of flea shampoos varies between brands and is based on the active ingredient used.

Some flea shampoos control the multiplication of fleas, others will kill fleas but not eggs, and there is the flea shampoo for dogs that does everything – kills adult fleas and flea eggs while preventing further infestation.

To truly get rid of fleas on your dog, you will need to combine the flea shampoo for dogs with other flea treatments like oral medications, collars, or topicals.

How Long Does Flea Shampoo Keep Fleas Away?

Most shampoos can protect your dog from fleas for about a week. The time the flea shampoo for dogs is able to keep fleas away from your pet depends on its potency and active ingredient.

For optimal treatment and flea prevention, pair flea shampoo with other flea control methods such as deep cleaning and flea medication.

The Best Flea Shampoos for Dogs Reviewed

The flea shampoo for dogs comes in different formulations and from various brands. To help you choose the right flea shampoo for your pet’s coat and skin type, we have reviewed some of the best products on the market.

Vet’s Best Flea and Tick Advanced Strength Dog Shampoo

Vet’s Best Flea and Tick Advanced Strength Dog Shampoo

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Summary: This flea and tick shampoo is excellent for dogs sensitive to products with lots of harsh chemicals. The gentle formula contains many healthy plant-based ingredients such as rosemary oil, peppermint oil, thyme oil, and more. The shampoo kills fleas at all points of the flea life cycle and contains no fragrance or colors. It is suitable for use on dogs 12 weeks or older.

Scent: Herbal citrusy scent

Key Ingredients: Rosemary oil, peppermint oil, thyme oil

Pros

  • Vet-recommended, plant-based formula
  • Kills fleas, flea eggs, larvae, and ticks
  • Cleans and deodorizes the dog’s coat
  • Free from harsh chemicals
  • Made in the USA

Cons

  • The scent fades after a short while after a wash.

Review: The Vet’s Best flea shampoo is loved by most dog owners that have used it. Pet parents say that ticks immediately fell off their dogs’ bodies as soon as they touched the shampoo. The shampoo is also great for soothing the irritated skin usually left by a flea infestation.

Hartz UltraGuard Pro Triple Action Flea & Tick Shampoo for Dogs

Hartz UltraGuard Pro Triple Action Flea & Tick Shampoo for Dogs

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Summary: If you are getting tired of flea popping up again after every wash, you are going to love the Hartz flea shampoo that also doubles as a tick treatment. The shampoo is made with gentle ingredients but is very effective in killing fleas and preventing eggs from hatching for up to 30 days after a wash. It is designed to keep your dog smelling good and fresh for 5 days after a wash. It also conditions your dog’s fur keeping it soft and smooth for days after washing.

Scent: Light herbal scent

Key Ingredients: Phenothrin, pyriproxyfen, and methoprene

Pros

  • Kills fleas, flea eggs, and brown ticks
  • Conditions and restores shine
  • Deodorizes and keeps the dog fresh-smelling
  • Can be used weekly for prevention
  • For dogs and pups over 12 weeks of age

Cons

  • Lathering requires a considerable amount of shampoo

Review: Dog owners say they needed only one application to kill all the fleas on their dog’s skin and fur. They say the shampoo left the fur very smooth and shiny, and the scent was a bonus that stayed for almost a week after washing. However, some parents reported that the shampoo takes a while to lather and requires a lot of product for each wash.

TropiClean Natural Flea & Tick Maximum Strength Shampoo

TropiClean Natural Flea & Tick Maximum Strength Shampoo

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Summary: This is another natural favorite that kills fleas on contact. The shampoo’s formula is very gentle on dogs’ skin but effectively deals with fleas, eggs, and larvae. The shampoo keeps your dog’s body free of fleas for up to 7 days, after which you need to apply more or use another treatment.

Scent: Light citrus scent

Key Ingredients: Clove oil, lemongrass, cedarwood oil, cinnamon oil

Pros

  • High-quality natural ingredients
  • Kills fleas, flea eggs, and larvae
  • Repels fleas for up to seven days
  • Efficient against ticks
  • Soap-free formula crafted with care

Cons

  • The scent can be repelling for some dogs

Review: Customers are happy with how well this shampoo works, especially after considering it doesn’t contain harsh artificial chemicals. One dog owner reports using it on camping trips to repel not only fleas but also other insects and bugs like mosquitoes and flies.

Veterinary Formula Flea and Tick Shampoo for Dogs

Veterinary Formula Flea and Tick Shampoo for Dogs

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Summary: The star ingredient in this shampoo is pyrethrum, a natural flea repellent extracted from flowers. The shampoo is pH balanced to ensure that it maintains your dog’s natural level of acidity and minimizes skin problems. This shampoo is available in three sizes: 8 fl oz, 16 fl oz, and 128 fl oz. The formula can be combined with the brand’s flea and tick spray.

Scent: Light smell

Key Ingredients: Pyrethrum, piperonyl butoxide, N-octyl bicycloheptene

Pros

  • Vet-formulated and recommended
  • Effective, fast-acting, and affordable
  • With pyrethrum as the main active ingredient
  • pH balanced and paraben-free
  • Comes in three different bottle sizes

Cons

  • Often out of stock due to high demand

Review: Many dog owners say they had been failed by other flea treatments, including flea collars and flea combs, until they tried this shampoo. They highly recommend it to other dog owners because it is very effective in relieving dogs from fleas.

Richard’s Organics Flea and Tick Shampoo for Dogs

Richard’s Organics Flea and Tick Shampoo for Dogs

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Summary: This natural pet shampoo contains vitamin E to soothe your dog’s skin and coat. The natural ingredients used in the formula are very gentle on dog skin despite being very effective in keeping fleas and other insects away from your dog. It is free of parabens, colors, fragrances, chemicals, and sulfates.

Scent: Light herbal scent

Key Ingredients: Cinnamon oil, rosemary oil, cedarwood oil, peppermint oil, and Vitamin E

Pros

  • 74.5% natural and gentle ingredients
  • With tea tree and five all-natural essential oils
  • In addition to fleas, it repels mosquitoes
  • Free from parabens, sulfates, and colors
  • Can be used on puppies over six weeks of age

Cons

  • Not safe for use around cats

Review: The reviews of this shampoo are generally very positive. Many dog owners say that the shampoo does its job well and as a bonus also repels mosquitoes. The light scent the shampoo leaves on dogs is also very much appreciated by dog owners.

SENTRY Oatmeal Flea and Tick Shampoo for Dogs

SENTRY Oatmeal Flea and Tick Shampoo for Dogs

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Summary: If you love a bargain, look no further than the Sentry oatmeal shampoo. This shampoo is designed to clean and deodorize your dog, after which it keeps your dog free of fleas for up to 10 days. The oatmeal in the shampoo has many benefits for your dog’s coat, keeping it soft and shiny. It is important to note that this shampoo costs more than the rest but comes with a lot more product. However, if you do the math, you get more ounces of product for every dollar you spend.

Scent: Hawaiian ginger scent

Key Ingredients: Oatmeal, permethrin, piperonyl butoxide

Pros

  • Kills pests, conditions, hydrates, and deodorizes
  • With oatmeal for maximum itch relief
  • Fetaures a pleasant Hawaiian ginger scent
  • Affordable and readily available option
  • Comes in a practical pump bottle

Cons

  • Not available in a small, easily portable package

Review: The Sentry flea shampoo has over 2000 reviews on Amazon, and 90% of them are 4 or 5 stars. It is a similar story over on Chewy. Pet parents say that the shampoo is excellent for flea infestations and also nourishes the coat keeping it healthy, soft, and shiny.

What is the Best Shampoo for Dogs With Fleas?

The best flea shampoo for dogs is the Vet’s Best Flea Itch Relief Dog Shampoo.

This is because the shampoo’s plant-based formula is made with premium quality ingredients that fight pests on your dog’s coat while keeping it healthy at the same time.

The shampoo kills fleas, eggs, and larvae and is free from harsh chemicals. Plus, this flea shampoo for dogs is made in the USA and formulated by veterinarians.

What Dog Shampoo Kills Flea Eggs?

Not every flea shampoo for dogs kills fleas in all life stages – most are only potent against adults. Here are the shampoos that kill flea eggs too: 

If you are not sure whether the flea shampoo for dogs you got kills flea eggs, consult with your trusted veterinarian. 

What Should I Look for When Buying Flea Shampoo for Dogs?

What Should I Look for When Buying Flea Shampoo for Dogs

When choosing a flea shampoo for dogs, ensure to check for the following features:

  • Acting Mechanism. Carefully read the instructions included on the packaging of the shampoo to ensure that you have the right resources to make the product work. For example, some brands may require multiple washes a week to work, and you may not have the time to do this.
  • Effectiveness. Know the capabilities of the shampoo you are using. Some shampoos only get rid of grown ticks and nothing else, while others can get the eggs, larvae, and grown ticks. Understand what your shampoo does to make certain that it matches your expectations.
  • Ingredients. Like with all pet products, you must thoroughly inspect the ingredients list of any shampoo to make sure it doesn’t contain any harmful ingredients such as sulfates, parabens, and MEA.
  • The Dog’s Coat. Ensure that the shampoo you choose is suitable for your dog’s breed characteristics. For example, long-haired dogs need shampoos that lather easily, or you will need a lot of product per wash to get your dog clean.
Best Seller
Vet’s Best Flea and Tick Advanced Strength Dog Shampoo
9.4/10Our Score
  • 2X flea killing effectiveness. Kills fleas, flea larva, flea eggs, and ticks on contact and cleans and deodorizes your dog’s coat.
  • Formulated specifically for dogs with natural oils like Rosemary and Peppermint to kill fleas on contact.
  • Formulated for dogs and puppies 12 weeks or older when used as directed.

How do You Make Natural Flea Shampoo for Dogs?

You can make a natural flea shampoo for dogs using simple, household ingredients in a few steps.

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup of baby shampoo
  • 1/2 cup of water
  • 1/2 cup of lemon juice
  • Essential oils (optional)

Instructions:

  • To make the flea shampoo for dogs, simply mix the ingredients and pour them into a bottle. Use the shampoo as you would traditional store-bought shampoo.
  • If you would love to give your flea shampoo for dogs a pleasant smell, you can add pet-safe essential oils such as lavender oil, chamomile oil, and cedarwood oil.

Homemade, natural flea killers are especially helpful if your dog is prone to allergies and has sensitive skin. However, the DIY flea shampoo for dogs is not as potent as regular flea shampoos.

Does Dawn Soap Kill Fleas?

Yes, Dawn soap kills fleas. However, it doesn’t prevent future infestations.

If you wash a dog with fleas using Dawn soap, the adult fleas will die off, but new ones will hatch in approximately a week.

This is because Dawn soap does not kill flea eggs. Another reason Dawn soap is not good as a sole flea treatment is that it does not kill fleas in the dog’s environment. In other words, the dog can pick up new fleas from the surroundings immediately after being bathed.