Washing the Dog with Dr. Bronner’s

Meet Sandy. She’s my 12-ish year old dachshound-something-or-other. She has kindly agreed to be my model in demonstrating how great the castile soap is in washing dogs. The castile soap works fabulously to remove the dirt, oils, and even pests on dogs. (We’re not certified about the pest part, but it does work.) It is very gentle on sensitive skin and can help dogs who have itching issues. And, although I’ve been fortunate enough not to know this firsthand, the Peppermint Castile soap apparently is a fabulous de-skunker.

The principles are pretty much the same as with washing people, except you’ll need more soap because dogs are hairier (usually) and dirtier (usually). You still want to be careful to keep the soap out of their eyes, and keep water out of their ears.

198 thoughts on “Washing the Dog with Dr. Bronner’s

  1. My dog, a mini poodle, Bear, has a rash on the inside of his right thigh area.I have been using povidine iodine, twice daily, along with Bear ingesting coconut oil and evening primos gel caps
    I bathed him in Epson salt and used a gentle shampoo.I was wondering if my bar of tea tree oil /Castille soap may help, until I can afford to do more.Im in a bind, and have also been putting plain yogurt in his food.Please help if you can, asap.Thankyou.K.

    • Hi Kathy – I’m sorry I didn’t see this earlier. There are some great customer comments above regarding healing various skin ailments. I was just reading about using hemp oil, both topically and internally by adding 1 Tbsp or so to the dog’s food daily, as a good way to reduce inflammation in problem skin areas. I don’t have direct experience with using the castile to clear problem skin on dogs. If the skin is broken, the soap would probably sting. However, if it is not broken, it could be very soothing.

      Can another reader weigh in here?

    • Kathy, my chihuahua has struggled with itchy belly/inner thigh problems ever since she was spayed. After ruling out ringworm and parasytic causes, we decided the most likely cause is yeast/fungal. The Dr. Bronner’s will be a good routine shampoo but you may need to use an anti-fungal type medicated shampoo 2-3 times per week for several weeks to clear the skin infection (I’m using a Ketokonozole based shampoo). If the rash is too scaly for the anti-fungal to penetrate you my need to begin with a coal-tar/sulphur type shampoo to clear the pores. All of these medicated shampoos must be left on for 8 to 10 minutes, scrub every couple of minutes with wet hands. Rinse well then rinse with a conditioner and slather on coconut oil afterwards as the medicated shampoos are quite drying and are not so gentle like Dr. Bronner’s is. I feed a high quality “no grain” kibble and supplement with coconut and salmon oil, the hemp oil idea sounds good too. Some will suggest going to all raw diet but that is just too much for me. When the rash is clear you could go back to the Dr. Bronner’s routine bathings with an occasional medicated shampoo treatment. Hope this helps.

    • Our elderly Old English Sheepdog has phantom pains near her tail from when it was improperly docked. She tears out the hair there, and bites at it until it bleeds. She then usually gets a fungal infection. I have found that using Bonner’s lavender soap , then rubbing the area with heliachrysom oil 4-5 times a day, clears the infection up in a week. The lavender soap is mild and repels fleas ticks and mosquitos, too. (We live in the Pacific Northwest).

  2. I agree. I use the lavender soap on my dog and myself. No more fleas and a sweet smelling pooch. : )

  3. Dogs with yeast/fungal problems are an internal issue – incorrect diet! My Havanese dogs were fed kibble for several years and were scratching continually, shedding hair like crazy and finally developed really smelly ears from yeast buildup wanting to exit the body. I switched them to a raw meaty bone diet and wow, all those issues Gone! I have been looking for a natural soap that would be soothing to their skin. I am looking forward to trying Dr. Bronner’s soaps on them and for my family as well.

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