At Home

DIY Doggy Shampoo & Conditioner Gift for Your Smelliest Dog Pals

Written by: Dr. Katy Nelson

December 8, 2014

I don’t know about you, but I don’t want any unpronounceable ingredients in my dog shampoo and conditioner. I use natural and nasty-free products on my skin, so why shouldn’t my furry friends have the same?

Making your own natural grooming products is fun, it works out to be cheaper than store-bought, and it let’s you control what goes in. Plus you can make your own pampering gift basket for your favourite pooch (Merry Christmas, smelly friend!).

Some of the ingredients I love are castile soap for shampoo, as it contains vegetable-based ingredients which are great for you and for your pup, as well as coconut oil, which conditions, heals dry skin, and leaves your their coat soft and shiny.

My motto is: use less ingredients, not more!

A few things to keep in mind:

* Make sure you don’t go overboard on the essential oils as dogs are very sensitive to smells!
* Also, never use synthetic oils as they can irritate your pup’s skin
* I love using leftover takeaway containers to mix up and store the shampoo and conditioner. Glass near the bath makes me nervous!
* Make small batches. Since you’re working with fresh ingredients and no preservatives, the products should be kept in a dark, cool place or the fridge and used within a week.

Dog Shampoo, makes 1 pint
A gentle shampoo that thoroughly cleans, while conditioning the skin and fur.


What you’ll need

1 cup Dr. Bronner’s Pure Castile Soap (I love the mild Hemp Almond scent but any of the scents will work)
1 Tablespoon coconut oil
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
2-3 drop pure essential oil (optional)

How to make it

1. Add all the ingredients to a plastic bottle, put the lid on and shake, shake, shake! You may want to thin it slightly with a little warm water.

2. When you’re ready to use, shake the bottle again, and lather up.

Dog Conditioner, makes 1 pint
The coconut oil leaves fur soft and shiny, without excess build-up, and is great for dry or sensitive skin.


What you’ll need

1/4 cup rolled oats
2 Tablespoons coconut oil
1 Tablespoon honey
1/2 cup warm water

How to make it

1. Grind the oats to a fine powder in a spice or coffee grinder, or in a pestle and mortar.

2. Add the coconut oil, honey and water to a plastic bottle and shake to combine. It should be a smooth, creamy mix.

3. After shampooing, massage the conditioner into your pup’s fur, and if possible, leave for a minute or two, then rinse.

Dog Detangling Spray, fills one small spray bottle.
This is great for detangling in-between washes, and adding a wonderful lustre to your dog’s coat. The mint is refreshing and invigorating.


What you’ll need

1 teaspoon of fresh or dried mint leaves
1 cup hot water
1 teaspoon of olive or coconut oil
1/2 teaspoon glycerin
Squeeze of lemon

How to make it

1. Soak the mint leaves in the hot water for 10 minutes. Strain the leaves and allow the water to cool.

2. Fill a small spray bottle with the mint water, olive oil, glycerin and squeeze of lemon. Put the lid on and shake the bottle really well. Before using, give the bottle a good shake, spray and comb through.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
Written by: Dr. Katy Nelson

December 8, 2014

Nutritionist-crafted food for your dog's breed or mix.

Recipes designed for dogs' individuality



A themed collection of BARK-designed toys, treats, and chews.


A themed collection of BARK-designed toys, treats, and chews.