Best Dog Conditioners
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- Best for soft skin: Pupper Dog Conditioner
- Best with coconut oil: DOG by Dr. Lisa Leave-in Conditioner w/Coconut Oil
- Best scent: Veterinary Formula Solutions Ultra Oatmeal Moisturizing Conditioner for Dogs
- Best for shiny coat: Burt's Bees for Pets Natural Oatmeal Conditioner with Colloidal Oat Flour & Honey
You likely consider conditioner a non-negotiable step in your hair care routine, and it can be just as beneficial to your pet. Dog conditioners are the key to keeping your dog’s coat soft and lustrous.
As with conditioners made for humans, not all dog conditioners are created equal. You can use this guide to learn what sets the best formulas apart, then browse our favorite options. We considered factors like ingredients, customer reviews, and overall performance to choose the top dog conditioners. Without further ado, here’s what you need to know in order to choose a quality dog conditioner.
Should you use dog shampoo and conditioner?
While shampoo helps cleanse your dog’s skin and hair, conditioner helps keep both soft and moisturized. It’s important to buy a formula that’s formulated for dogs, since human conditioners may contain ingredients that could be harmful to dogs if ingested or absorbed through the skin.
However, it's important to note that not all dogs require conditioning. Some breeds, such as labrador retrievers, have naturally oily coats that may not benefit from additional conditioning. Always consult with a veterinarian or professional groomer to determine the specific needs of your dog's coat.
Benefits of Using the Best Dog Conditioners
Conditioning your dog's hair is an essential part of their grooming routine, and it offers several benefits. Here are some reasons why conditioning is helpful:
- Moisturizes: Just like humans, dogs can experience dry or brittle hair. Conditioning helps to replenish and lock in moisture, preventing the coat from becoming overly dry and prone to breakage.
- Detangles and reduces matting: For dogs with long or thick coats, tangles and mats can be a common issue. Conditioners help to smoothen the hair cuticles and make brushing and combing easier, reducing the likelihood of matting.
- Adds shine and luster: A well-conditioned coat appears shiny and healthy. Conditioners contain ingredients that add luster to the fur, making it look more vibrant.
- Soothes skin irritation: Some dog conditioners include ingredients that have soothing properties, like colloidal oatmeal, which can help alleviate minor skin irritations or itchiness.
- Reduces shedding: By keeping the coat healthy and nourished, conditioning can help minimize excessive shedding, leaving fewer loose hairs around your house.
- Bonding: Grooming sessions that include conditioning provide an opportunity for you to bond with your dog.
How we picked
The best conditioners contain ingredients that serve to lock in moisture. We looked for moisturizing ingredients like shea butter and plant oils.
Customer reviews can give you a sense of other pet owners’ experience with a given product. We looked for dog conditioners that had high ratings and positive customer reviews.
Cost is a key factor to consider when choosing the best conditioner for your pet. We calculated the cost per ounce of each conditioner to choose options that fit a range of budgets.
We favored dog conditioners that come in bottles that are recyclable and/or partially made from recycled materials.
Our picks for the best dog conditioners:
Best for soft skin: Pupper Dog Conditioner
- Has oatmeal and beeswax for maximum softness
- Fairly new to the market of dog grooming
Key ingredients:OatmealBeeswaxPeppermint oil
Cost per oz.:$1.50
Return policy:30 days
Pupper’s dog conditioner contains beeswax and oatmeal along with peppermint oil and rosemary oil to keep your dog’s fur and skin soft and moisturized. The formula is sulfate-free, making it a less drying option. You can receive a 20% discount on the product if you sign up for a subscription that ships out every 30 days.
Reviewers report that the conditioner makes their dogs’ coats soft, silky, and shiny. “My dog has been battling dry, itchy skin for the last couple of years and I've tried a number of different things to help,” one wrote. “Nothing seemed to work until I started using Pupper Conditioner. The first time I used it, my pup's skin looked so much better and softer.”
Best leave-in: DOG by Dr. Lisa Leave-in Conditioner w/Coconut Oil
- Can be used on dry fur between washes
- Recyclable aluminum bottle
- High cost per oz.
Key ingredients:Coconut oilChamomileRose water
Cost per oz.:$2.31
Return policy:30 days
You can use this leave-in conditioner between washes on dry fur to keep your dog’s fur soft, or you can apply it on damp fur after a shampoo. It contains a slew of moisturizing ingredients, including coconut and jojoba oils. The vegan formula is free from synthetic fragrance and silicones, which can weigh down hair.
Best scent: Veterinary Formula Solutions Ultra Oatmeal Moisturizing Conditioner for Dogs
- Has shea butter in ingredients
- Low cost per oz
- Strong fragrance may not appeal to everyone
Key ingredients:Colloidal oatmealJojoba oilShea butter
Cost per oz.:$0.59
Return policy:30 days
This conditioner for dogs from Veterinary Formula Solutions contains moisturizing shea butter and silk protein, which can strengthen hair. It has a raspberry and pomegranate scent to leave your pup smelling fresh after bath time.
The conditioner works wonders on dogs prone to dryness, and the scent is long lasting, according to reviewers. “This will be my go to conditioner from now on,” one person wrote. “My dog has had some itchy/dry skin issues lately and I bought this conditioner to help moisturize. After 1 bath with this his coat is super soft and shiny, plus it smells nice too.”
Best for shiny coat: Burt's Bees for Pets Natural Oatmeal Conditioner with Colloidal Oat Flour & Honey
- 99.7% natural
- Bottle made with recycled materials
- Small container
Key ingredients:Colloidal oat flourHoneyGrape seed oil
Cost per oz.:$0.96
Return policy:30 days
Burt’s Bees for Dogs Oatmeal Conditioner is made especially for dogs with sensitive skin, with soothing colloidal oat flour and honey, which hydrates skin and conditions hair. The conditioner doesn’t contain sulfates or colorants, and comes in packaging that’s 80% post-consumer recycled materials.
Choosing the right dog conditioner can make a world of difference in your furry companion's coat health and overall comfort. With the many options available, it's crucial to consider your dog's specific coat type, any existing skin conditions, and the formulation of the conditioner. All of the conditioners here leave dogs’ skin and hair soft and moisturized, according to customer reviewers.