Considering palm oil is common in people shampoo, perhaps it’s no surprise it’s in dog shampoos as well.
When you choose a palm oil free dog shampoo, you support animal welfare by not contributing to deforestation and habitat loss.
Companies use palm oil because it’s inexpensive.
Most all pet shampoos, even from brands you may think are natural and eco-friendly, still use palm oil.
Watch for vague terms such as plant-derived and plant-based without the source.
Companies are quick to say they use coconut but will say “vegetable” or “plant-derived” when it’s sourced from palm oil.
Choose bars over liquids. Liquid shampoos (and other water-based products such as soaps, lotions and creams) contain preservatives to prevent spoilage and bacteria.
Liquid shampoos typically contain Glycerin. Glycerin is often made from palm oil. See if the company spells out the source such as Glycerin (coconut). More often than not, companies will intentionally be vague and state simply Glycerin or Vegetable Glycerin. This often means its sourced from palm oil.
Pay attention to how the company discloses or doesn’t disclose their products’ ingredients. Choose dog shampoos that are transparent with the source of each of their ingredients.
Also, the less ingredients something has, oftentimes, the more real ingredients it contains. This means it will contain less or no palm oil.
Common palm oil ingredients in “better” dog shampoos
Below are a few examples of ingredients that contain palm oil in dog shampoos in “the better brands” in stores:
- Caprylyl Glycol
- Cocoamidpropyl Betaine
- Coco Glucoside
- Decyl Glucoside
- Lauryl Glucoside
- Sodium Laureth Sulfate
- Vegetable Glycerin
We looked online at one dog shampoo from a better brand and saw these vague ingredients:
Purified water, a mild range of plant-based cleansers, plant-derived glycerol as hydrating agents, natural blend of floral fragrance, lemon-based neutralizer, preservative.
What plant-based cleansers?
What plant-derived glycerol?
These ingredients are incomplete.
Dog shampoo from mainstream brands contain additional ingredients containing palm oil. These include sulfates which create foam, lather and suds. Two examples are Sodium Lauryl Sulfate also called SLS and Sodium Laureth Sulfate (SLES).
Dog shampoos should proudly display their ingredients, making them easy to find.
Don’t be swayed by advertising such as All Natural Ingredients. They should spell out the ingredients, including their sources.
If you cannot easily find the ingredients on the packaging or on the website, do not buy it.
Palm oil free dog shampoo
These companies make their puppy and dog shampoos without palm oil and took the extra step of certifying them Palm Oil Free. This means an independent organization researched each ingredient, including the source(s) of each ingredient.
When you choose dog shampoo without palm oil, you will be getting a higher quality product overall.
These dog shampoos are soothing, gentle and non-irritating because they use real ingredients, not manufactured ones. They are all certified Palm Oil Free.
These shampoos are all concentrated in bar form. This means no plastic waste and no chemical preservatives. Simply use it like you would a bar of soap. Consider this list of palm oil free dog shampoo bars for your furry family members.
- Bow Wow – Shampoo bar for all dogs. Contains oatmeal and neem.
- Shampooch – Sensitive dog shampoo bar. Contains linseed powder.
- Shampooch Mini – Trial size bar
- The Pawfector – Solid dog conditioner. Contains cocoa butter, coconut and lemongrass.
- The Pawfector Mini – Trial size conditioner bar
On Ethique’s website, they spell out the source of every ingredient they use. Their dog shampoos include neem and oatmeal.
In addition, as a company, Ethique is certified cruelty-free, vegan, and sustainable. They are zero-waste.
They are also completely plastic-free in an effort to support animal welfare by keeping plastics out of waterways.
Their products are certified Palm Oil Free by Orangutan Alliance.
Ethique donates 20% of profits to conservation, animal welfare, and environmental groups. Some of these include HUHA (Helping You Help Animals), The Orangutan Project, International Tiger Project, Australia Zoo Wildlife Wonders, International Animal Rescue, and World Animal Protection.
Learn more in our Ethique interview.
Where to buy: On their website and on Amazon. Ethique has some products at Target online. Based in New Zealand, they ship internationally, including the United States, UK and throughout Europe, etc.
The Australian Natural Soap Company
- Solid Dog Shampoo – Contains saponified coconut oil and saponified rice bran oil, and essential oils.
This vegan product is non-irritating. It’s gentle on puppies and dogs. As a company, they are plastic free. They also donate 3% of their profits to The Orangutan Project.
All of their products are certified Palm Oil Free by Orangutan Alliance.
Where to buy: They are based in Australia and ship internationally, including to the United States, Canada, UK and throughout Europe, and many more.
- Shampooch – Contains saponified olive oil, coconut oil, and neem oil
Please note, this is Zeez Beez in the UK. Their Shampooch dog shampoo helps to relieve dry skin, itching, bites, and more. It’s non-irritating and anti-inflammatory.
All of Zeez Beez’s products are certified Palm Oil Free by the International Palm Oil Free Certification Trademark Programme. They were first in the world to have a certified Palm Oil Free animal shampoo bar and first in the UK for palm oil free shampoo bars and soaps for humans.
Where to buy: They are based in England and ship throughout the UK.
Certified Palm Oil Free dog shampoos
Orangutan Alliance and the International Palm Oil Free Certification Trademark Programme (POFCAP) certified these dog shampoos Palm Oil Free. We discuss this more in pet products without palm oil.
It’s important to note, most ingredient names for palm oil do not include “palm” in the name. This is why it’s important to choose certified Palm Oil Free products. Other companies can make claims, but there are hundreds of alternate names for palm oil ingredients. Even if you see the ingredients on the label, most times, it doesn’t spell out the source. There are hundreds of alternate names it goes by.
Why palm oil free? As the demand for palm oil continues, more and more rainforests are cleared. This is called deforestation. Deforestation destroys animal habitats; animals are often burned in the fires. If they survive, they have nowhere to live. Rainforests contribute to the world’s climate by absorbing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.
Choosing dog shampoo without palm oil
When shopping for your canine family members, choosing palm oil free means you are considering animal welfare across the world. And for your dog, this means they will be getting dog shampoos free from chemicals, artificial fragrances, parabens (preservatives), and artificial colors.
These shampoo bars are pH balanced for dogs and made with low-irritant ingredients. They are free from sulfates, the harsh foaming chemicals found in other dog shampoos.
When considering the ethical treatment of animals, oftentimes people think of cruelty free and vegan… Please remember to consider the broad-reaching implications of palm oil that also affect animals.
Thank you for your interest in finding palm oil free dog shampoo to reduce deforestation and overall demand for palm oil. Choose palm oil free dog shampoos which are free from SLS and other chemicals. The higher quality ingredients in these dog shampoo bars contain less chemicals and less ingredients overall. They will be less irritating to dogs and pets.
None of them are liquid shampoos; all of them are concentrated bars.