How to Make Your Own Pet Shampoo

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Occasional bathing is essential for many pets, but chemical-packed human shampoos are detrimental to most pets' skin and coats. Such shampoos are drying and may leave your pet's skin flaky and his hair dry and brittle. Use commercial pet shampoo, or make a batch of homemade, chemical-free shampoo and get your pet squeaky-clean without harsh chemicals.

Step 1

Wash an empty plastic bottle with plenty of soap and hot water. Invert the bottle into a dish drainer, or place it upside down on a clean towel to dry. To avoid any unwanted skin irritation, never use bottles that once held chemicals or cleaning agents.

Step 2

Add 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar, 1/4 cup liquid dish detergent and 1/2 cup distilled water to the bottle. Cap the bottle and roll it back and forth in your hands to combine the ingredients. Apple cider vinegar may seem like a strange choice, but it is an excellent, all-natural cleansing agent.

Step 3

Pour 2 tablespoons sweet almond oil and 8 drops essential oil into the shampoo base and shake gently to mix. Let the shampoo sit overnight to allow the oils plenty of time to infuse into the soap base.

Items you will need

  • Empty plastic bottle
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup liquid dish detergent
  • 1/2 cup distilled water
  • 2 tablespoons sweet almond oil
  • 4 drops chamomile oil
  • 4 drops lavender oil


  • Refrigerate the shampoo between uses, and shake the shampoo to blend the contents before bathing your pet.
  • Choose essential oils that are safe for your pet. If you’re not sure what is safe, ask your vet before mixing your shampoo.


  • Never squirt shampoo directly onto your pet’s face. Add a little soap to a damp rag and wipe his face instead to prevent soap from running in his eyes.

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