- What are the Best Anti-Fungal/Antibacterial Dog Shampoos?
- 8 Reasons Why Anti-Fungal & Antibacterial Shampoos Are Needed
- What to Look for in a Top-Rated Anti-Fungal & Antibacterial Shampoo
- The 6 Best Anti-Fungal & Antibacterial Dog Shampoos
- 5 More Top-Rated Shampoos that Are Anti-Fungal & Antibacterial
Though they say curiosity is a trait specific to cats, dogs are just as likely to get into things when they shouldn’t. Whether it’s rolling in the smelliest thing they can find or making a beeline for the only mud puddle in the yard, dogs have a talent for getting down and dirty.
Bathing is a necessary evil for dog owners but sometimes bathing your dog is about more than just keeping him clean – sometimes it’s a form of treatment for infections and other skin problems.
Keep reading to learn more about anti-fungal and antibacterial dog shampoos and when they might be needed. You’ll also find our top 6 picks for the best anti-fungal and antibacterial dog shampoos of 2023.
What are the Best Anti-Fungal/Antibacterial Dog Shampoos?
- Synergy Labs Veterinary Formula Clinical Care Antiseptic
- Vetoquinol Vet Solutions Sebozole Shampoo
- MiconaHex+Triz Medicated Dog Shampoo
- VetMD Medicated Antibacterial & Anti-Fungal Dog Shampoo
- Thomas Labs MicoChlor Plus Antibacterial & Antifungal Dog & Cat Shampoo
- Duoxo Chlorhexidine PS Dog & Cat Shampoo
8 Reasons Why Anti-Fungal & Antibacterial Shampoos Are Needed
Most dogs need occasional baths to keep their skin and coat clean. If your dog has a very long or fine coat, more frequent baths may help to keep things neat and tidy. For everyday bathing, a regular dog shampoo will get the job done but if your dog is suffering from a skin infection, he’ll need something a little stronger – he’ll need an anti-fungal or antibacterial dog shampoo.
Here are the top 8 reasons why your dog might need an anti-fungal or antibacterial shampoo:
- Intense itching, licking, or biting at the skin.
- Irritation or inflammation in moist areas of skin (ears, paws, armpits, and skin folds).
- Shaking the head, pawing at the ears, or tilting head to one side.
- Brown, waxy discharge from the ears, often with a foul odor.
- Greasy coat and smelly or oily skin.
- Ring-shaped patches of red, irritated skin.
- Scaly, crusty skin, often with patches of dryness and hair loss.
- Papules or pustules on the surface of the skin, sometimes with pus or discharge.
All of the problems above point to a problem affecting your dog’s skin. In most cases, these symptoms are related to either a yeast (fungal) infection or a bacterial skin infection.
Anti-fungal dog shampoos are a common form of treatment for yeast infections. Yeast infections in dogs are caused by an overgrowth of Malassezi bacteria. These bacteria are normally present in your dog’s ears and skin, but it doesn’t cause a problem until something causes a shift. When your dog’s immune system becomes compromised, when his ears stay too wet for too long, or when the environment becomes particularly hot and humid, these bacteria can multiply rapidly and cause a skin infection.
Symptoms of yeast infections in dogs include intense itching, irritation and inflammation of the skin, redness or sores, and a sticky discharge. These symptoms are most commonly seen in moist areas of skin such as the ears, armpits, between the toes, in the nose, and in folds of skin. Some dogs also develop a greasy coat, foul-smelling skin, and a yellow/green discharge. Medicated Anti-fungal dog shampoos can help clear up the infection to restore balance and heal the skin.
Another common fungal infection seen in dogs is ringworm. Though the name might suggest otherwise, this condition has nothing to do with worms and everything to do with fungi called dermatophytes. Ringworm causes ring-shaped skin lesions and may be accompanied by itching and redness. Anti-fungal dog shampoo for ringworm can help resolve the infection and heal the skin.
If your dog developed dry, scaly, or crusty skin, a bacterial skin infection is more likely to be the problem. These infections can also cause patches of hair loss, the development of pustules or papules, and pus or discharge from the skin. Bacterial skin infections in dogs are commonly caused by allergies (contact or inhalant allergies, food allergies, or flea bite allergies), hormonal imbalance, liver disease, kidney disease, and various immune disorders. Antibacterial shampoos can help kill the bacteria, giving the skin a chance to heal.
What to Look for in a Top-Rated Anti-Fungal & Antibacterial Shampoo
Before you start shopping for anti-fungal or antibacterial dog shampoo, you need to take your dog to the vet. Many skin problems present with similar symptoms and you don’t want to make an incorrect assumption about what’s really going on. Your vet will be able to diagnose your dog’s skin problem as fungal or bacterial, at which point you can then start shopping for the right shampoo.
Here are some things to look for when shopping for anti-fungal and antibacterial dog shampoo:
- Medication – While a regular dog shampoo might contain ingredients to soothe and moisturize your dog’s skin, if he has an infection, you’ll need a shampoo with an anti-fungal or antibacterial component. Keep in mind that some medicated shampoos will contain both.
- Active Ingredients – In addition to making sure that the shampoo has active ingredients to deal with fungal and bacterial infections, you should check the concentration. Ask your vet for recommendations about specific agents and concentrations to look for.
- Moisturizer – Not only do you want a medicated shampoo that will clear up your dog’s skin infection, but you also want to choose one with moisturizers to help repair and heal the skin.
- Cooling Agents – Soothing ingredients like aloe vera can help cool your dog’s skin down, reducing inflammation and supporting the healing process.
- Deodorizers – Many dogs with skin infections develop a foul odor, so choosing a shampoo that contains deodorizing agents may be beneficial.
- Essential Oils – A component of many natural dog shampoos, essential oils offer natural antifungal and antibacterial benefits in addition to natural scents.
- Fragrances – Because there is a high risk of making your dog’s skin problems worse, you should avoid shampoos that contain artificial fragrances. Look for products scented with natural oils and extracts instead.
- Chemicals – Though you want to make sure the medicated shampoo you choose contains active ingredients to fight fungal and bacterial infections, you should avoid products made with too many other chemicals.
In addition to the things listed above, there are a few other things to think about when comparing products. For example, check how often the shampoo needs to be applied and how long you need to wait between treatments. You should also make sure that the shampoo is safe for puppies or very small dogs if your pup fits into either of these categories.
The 6 Best Anti-Fungal & Antibacterial Dog Shampoos
Now that you know the basics about yeast (fungal) and bacterial infections in dogs, you’re ready to start shopping for medicated anti-fungal dog shampoo and antibacterial dog shampoo. Here are our top six picks for the best options out there:
|Our 2023 Picks: Best Antifungal & Antibacterial Shampoo for Dogs:|
The Overall Best Anti-Fungal & Antibacterial Dog Shampoo: For reliable results and powerful relief, our top pick for the best medicated anti-fungal dog shampoo is Synergy Labs Veterinary Formula Clinical Care Antiseptic & Antifungal Shampoo. Formulated with benzethonium chloride, this formula offers relief for fungal and bacterial skin infections including dermatitis and pyoderma which can result from allergies, hormonal imbalance, immune disorders, and ringworm. This shampoo also features aloe vera to soothe irritated skin and speed healing, plus it is 100% paraben-free to prevent irritation. Use twice weekly until the condition is resolved.
- Pros: Relieves fungal and bacterial infections, powerful active ingredients, soothing aloe vera, deodorizes skin, speeds healing, 100% paraben-free
- Cons: Contains some artificial color, may require multiple uses
5 More Top-Rated Shampoos that Are Anti-Fungal & Antibacterial
If the shampoo reviewed above doesn’t seem like the right fit for your dog, don’t worry! There are plenty of other great options out there – here are five more we recommend:
Formulated with two active ingredients, this Vetoquinol Vet Solutions Sebozole Shampoo is effective against bacterial, fungal, and seborrheic activity. It contains miconazole nitrate 2% and chloroxylenol 1% to five infection and relieve symptoms. This shampoo is powerful against infection but gentle enough for routine use and it works for both cats and dogs. This medicated anti-fungal dog shampoo is a great choice for dogs with sensitive skin as well.
- Pros: Works for bacterial and fungal infections, gentle enough for regular use, two powerful active ingredients, works for dogs and cats
- Cons: May require multiple treatments, contains some artificial fragrance and dyes
Developed to treat fungal and bacterial infections in dogs, cats, and horses, this MiconaHex+Triz Medicated Dog shampoo is a powerful formula. This shampoo features chlorhexidine gluconate 2% and miconazole nitrate 2% to relieve topical fungal and bacterial skin infections quickly and effectively. It also contains ceramides to moisturize and repair your dog’s dry and damaged skin. It is fragrance-free and also works to fight dandruff, ringworm, and yeast infections.
- Pros: Two active ingredients, fights fungal and bacterial skin infections, contains ceramides to moisturize and repair skin, fragrance-free, made in the USA
- Cons: Requires 10 minutes soaking time, may require multiple treatments
If you’re looking for a medicated shampoo that is tried and tested, this VetMD Medicated Antibacterial and Antifungal Dog Shampoo might be the way to go. Vet-approved, this formula contains no artificial chemicals, fragrances, or parabens that might irritate your dog’s sensitive skin and it is pH-balanced with supplements for healthy skin and coat. This shampoo contains tea tree oil to soothe and invigorate skin with a soothing lavender scent. It is uniquely formulated to relieve both bacterial and fungal infections while still being gentle on your dog’s skin. It is also safe for use with topical flea and tick treatments and is a great natural anti-fungal dog shampoo.
- Pros: Two active ingredients, relieves bacterial and fungal infections, no chemicals or artificial fragrances, paraben-free, pH-balanced, natural lavender scent
- Cons: Scent may be too strong for some dogs, thick consistency can be hard to work with
If you’re looking for a shampoo to treat your pet’s skin issues, Thomas Labs MicoChlor Plus Medicated Dog & Cat Shampoo might be your best option. This veterinary-strength shampoo helps with ringworm, dermatitis, hot spots, irritations and itching while also gently removing dirt, debris and excess lipids.
Thomas Labs MicoChlor Shampoo soothes, enriches, and moisturizes your pet’s skin and coat with ingredients like aloe, oatmeal, essential fatty acids and vitamin E., all while also descaling and degreasing the hair without stripping it. You can ease the symptoms of skin conditions associated with bacterial and fungal infections and keep your pet feeling comfortable and happy.
- Pros: Veterinary strength, helps with an array of skin issues
- Cons: Scent may be too strong for some dogs, thick consistency can be hard to work with
For a medicated shampoo that soothes as well as heals your dog’s skin, try Duoxo Chlorhexidine PS Dog & Cat Shampoo. This formula features chlorhexidine and climbazole to control bacterial and fungal infections as well as phytosphingosine-salicyloyl to provide anti-inflammatory and anti-seborrheic benefits. This shampoo contains special moisturizing ingredients and deposits a long-lasting film for extra protection. Plus, with its lathering formula, it leaves your dog’s skin and coat cleaner than ever.
- Pros: Soothes and heals skin, two active ingredients, works against fungal and bacterial infections, deposits a long-lasting protective film, cleans coat
- Cons: Contains some artificial fragrance
Does vinegar kill yeast on dogs? – Vinegar is a natural remedy for yeast infections in dogs, but it is best used in combination with an anti-fungal dog shampoo. Once you use the shampoo to remove the waxy buildup and accumulation of yeast in your dog’s skin and coat, you can treat him with vinegar to take care of what remains. Apple cider vinegar works well, and it has natural healing properties as well. Mix equal parts water and apple cider vinegar then spray it on the affected area and let dry.
- Can I use antibacterial soap on my dog? – Antibacterial soap can be used to kill bacteria and other microbes which could be causing an infection in your dog’s skin. Compared to regular soap or dog shampoo, antibacterial soap kills more pathogens but it can also kill off beneficial bacteria in some cases. When used on occasion, it may be safe for dogs but if your dog has a bacterial skin infection you are better off using a medicated antibacterial shampoo formulated for dogs.
- How can I treat my dog’s yeast infection at home? – If your dog has a widespread yeast infection, one way to treat it is with a 50/50 solution of apple cider vinegar and water. Spray the affected area or soak a clean cloth in the mixture and wring it out before applying it by hand. Once the skin dries, cover the area with a thin layer of coconut oil. Repeat the treatment every 24 to 48 hours until the problem is resolved.
- What is a natural cure for dog fungus? – Yeast infections caused by fungus can be treated with several natural ingredients. Spraying a 50/50 mix of hydrogen peroxide and apple cider vinegar on the affected area can help kill the yeast and resolve the infection. Let the mixture sit for 15 minutes then wipe clean with a damp cloth. Finish with a thin layer of coconut oil to keep your dog’s skin moisturized and protected.
The right anti-fungal or antibacterial dog shampoo could solve your dog’s skin problems almost overnight. Before you start using a new shampoo, however, it’s a good idea to test it on a small patch of skin just to make sure your dog doesn’t have a negative reaction. To get started shopping for the best anti-fungal and antibacterial shampoos for dogs, check out our top 6 picks reviewed above!