Soap for Doggies?

Soapmaking Forum

Help Support Soapmaking Forum:

This site may earn a commission from merchant affiliate links, including eBay, Amazon, and others.


Aug 8, 2015
Reaction score
Right now I live in Asheville, NC. Moving to Richm
I've been trying to use the search function for it, but can't seem to find anything. I'd like to make a CP process for my neighbors dogs who are my buddies. Can anyone point me in the direction of a great recipe? They do have sensitive skin, so I am looking for something soothing... any ideas?

So sorry I can find it using search. This has probably been asked before. Please feel free to give me heck for being a dumb newb.
Thank you. That worked. they use some really chemical laden store bought shampoos on them, so I was hoping something a little more natural would be more soothing. Staying away from EOs and fragrances for sure. I'll reconsider, or continue researching to find something really mild if I do decide to go on with this project. Thank you for your help!
I've used my neem soap or shampoo bars on my dogs and in honesty, its not that great. It leaves their coats rough feeling and their skin a bit dry. Maybe look for a sulfate free baby shampoo, it will be gentler then dog specific shampoo
I use my neem soap on my pup and like it, but since I keep the coconut low - it takes a bit of work to get a decent lather. There are varying opinions on using soap on dogs and mine is - it's fine. The issue lies in the Ph of a dog's skin/coat and while I am CERTAINLY no expert, I feel like it probably bounces back fairly quickly, like a human's. Dogs also shouldn't be shampooed super often, so I feel like the once a month mine gets washed with handmade soap isn't going to cause any damage. The most damaging part of his baths is...the bath (he's a wimp)
KM, my pup hates them too. There are no closed doors in the house, usually, so he knows if he and I are in the bathroom with the door closed it is curtains for him, and he starts scrabbling.

I had thought of making soap for him and his sister, but did not want to take chances w/the PH thing until they both got fleas really badly at one point, then I did make an MP one (w/careful amounts of EOs that are are pest repellent) and it seemed to be fine w/r/t their skin, it did not make it dry or itchy that I could tell.

The one thing I did do from a suggestion somewhere was to make a soap-on-a-rope so that I could keep it on my wrist, it was much easier to have it hanging there when I was dealing with a wriggly dog that wanted to get out of the tub more than anything on earth ...
NA, I'm kicking myself for not thinking of putting the pup soap on a rope! That makes so much sense. Holding a bar of soap is definitely more tricky than pouring on some liquid!
Honestly, I actually just started using 100% oo soap paste (liquid soap before dilution) and it works amazingly. It sticks onto their fur so its easy for me to lather it up. They are very fluffy and their furl lathers up quite well. I dont use any scent and I usually rinse them with an enzyme conditioner made for dogs. The last time I did this, it was great for my poocher. :) I dont sell it though, just use it for my personal dogs.

They are veeery allergic dogs and I actually found that the OO soap made them less itchy.

On a side note, I actually did dilute this paste a bit when I made it, its just still really gel like and thick/holds its shape. Its much more of a paste than a liquid soap.
Confessions of a lazy woman: I don't bathe my dogs very often. Just when the stink is unbearable. I usually just wipe them down with a warm wet wash cloth to get the mud off of them and we all seem pretty content with that. Especially when I do their faces. Odd. However, the last time everyone got a bath, it was with the coffee kitchen soap I made. I figured if it could get the garlic and onions off my hands, it could get the funky dog smell off the girls. It worked. They're good until the next bought of I can't stand them anymore.
Teresa, I don't bathe mine that often either. Maybe once a month for the little one b/c her fur is so silky that it gets matted otherwise, sometimes to the degree that it is hard to untangle/pull the matts out w/my fingers. I don't like to let the matted bits get far enough that I have to use scissors, she gets raggedy/orphan-ish looking if I have to cut off too many.

Fred less often (maybe six weeks to two months) b/c his fur gets less matted, he does not seem to need it (ie; no itching, and his skin is in good shape). Like you, I love the way they smell, their own doggie smells, just by themselves, unless they get into something nasty.

Galaxy, that is interesting. My dogs are both still young, and as yet have no skin issues, but from what I see it is sometimes only an issue of time. Your cleanser ideas do look good.
I don't know about normal use, but the other week my dog got sprayed right in the face and chest by a skunk. I used all the normal stuff they sell on him with poor results. I had made some "mechanics soap" (100%CO w/ lemon)a month or two before and out of desperation,soaped him down hard twice and it made a great difference. I may have to market a "skunk stink dog soap"
NA, my poor babies have always had bad skin. Its gotten so bad that the vet told me last time "as long as your dog looks happy/isnt miserable, just do whatever you can to see if you can help him stay that way"

He gets skin infections about once a month poor thing (I have 2, the boy is worse than the girl with the skin issues). The vet told me at this point his skin is so bad that I shouldn't worry much about the long term effects. If it helps his skin, then use it. I've started using a cortisone spray on when it gets really bad instead of giving him oral steroids or starting him on antibiotics. It really does help. That and a good bath (sometimes I even use medicated dog shampoo). Right now we are on a good month so he doesn't have any open wounds at the moment. He really doesn't seem bothered by them though. They just freak ME out more than anything.

ETA: oh, and they need to get a bath once a week. They get much worse when they don't. They are strange in the doggy world.
Last edited:
My sister's dog is like that too. He has so many other issues as well, badly abused before they got him, so is fear-aggressive (and a bad size for that, he weighs about 90 lbs and has jaws like a bear trap), so he is really only happy with his boy (my nephew), my BIL, and me, he is even a little scared of my sister and niece.

His skin condition always has him raw (bleeding sometimes in spots), itchy and stinky, when he comes to me he sort of nudges in w/his head and then backs up so that I have to rub/scratch his lower back/butt, it is pretty cute b/c he is so loveable in his own scary/scared way.

I am just really glad that there are people like you and my family who are willing to do the work that it needs. I would *never* have believed how much the little buggers take over your heart before I got them, but once they do it is worth every minute/penny you have to make them as happy as you can. I have very rarely met a dog without a really good soul.
Last edited:
Max the wonder dog is here at work with me today and he asked me to tell you all that the best thing is paddling about in the ocean and then shaking all over your person.

However if you cant do that then any gentle hand made solid or liquid soap, or baby shampoo with a dilute vinegar rinse and then rinsed again well is a good thing. Maybe even a little conditioner at the end. Max likes salt soaps too, but he has no skin issues whatsoever.
My doggie's skin seems happy with 100% OO Soap. Her fur is left soft and clean. Store bought washes leave her scratching her skin as soon as she is all dried off. She doesn't scratch after her real soap bath so I call it a thumbs up.

The ideas of using a soap on a rope or a paste are great ideas! People on this forum are so smart.

I too wash only once every month or two. I only do it when she smells badly or when she has a build up of oil on her coat.
I have a wonder dog as well, and he is named Max. Here he is where he likes it best. In the salt water.

Mad Max

MAX Pamaquid Maine.png

Thank you. That worked. they use some really chemical laden store bought shampoos on them, so I was hoping something a little more natural would be more soothing. Staying away from EOs and fragrances for sure. I'll reconsider, or continue researching to find something really mild if I do decide to go on with this project. Thank you for your help!
If they use a lot of chemicals, which makes me laugh, we are chemicals too, why do you try to make a simple, gentle soap using surfacant derived from coconut oil. Right now a lot of stuff is available online, which we could dream only years ago:))