What Dog Shampoo Causes Seizures

Finding the cause of sudden seizures in previously healthy dogs may require a neurology or internal medicine work-up, but the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center notes that often the problem can be traced to a toxin exposure.

Before you recommend an MRI, refer to this chart to see if the pet has potential exposure to one of the items. Be mindful that many of the medications commonly used in veterinary medicine are on this list because they cause concern in overdose situations or when given via an incorrect route (ie giving Penicillin G IV).

Hartz Flea & Tick Shampoo

Can I Use Human Shampoo On My Dog?

Human shampoo is made to wash out natural oils and wax on our hair, but a dog’s skin is much more sensitive. Because a dog’s skin is more neutral to alkaline in nature than human skin, he requires a shampoo that is pH balanced for dogs.

A human’s skin is around 5.5 to 5.6, which mean it is more acidic. A dog’s skin pH, however, is between 6.2 and 7.4, more neutral to alkaline. If you use human shampoo or baby shampoo on a dog, the skin layer called the mantle gets disrupted. This makes it easy for bacteria to take hold, leaving him open to parasites, viruses, dry skin, and flakiness.

Human shampoos are more acidic since our scalp can tolerate ingredients a dog cannot. Since a dog’s skin is thinner than a human’s, you can imagine why certain chemicals, preservatives, and dyes cause great danger to them.

What Are Herbal Dog Shampoos?

Since using Dr. Harvey’s herbal canine products on my Cocker Spaniel, I’ve noticed a huge difference in his overall well-being and health. However, not all herbal products for dogs are created equally, which is why I rely on Dr. Harvey’s reputation and experience.

Since I learned to read a dog shampoo label, I feel confident telling you about Dr. Harvey’s herbal dog grooming products. They contain no harmful chemicals or preservatives, and are made only with herbal and organic ingredients.

The word herbal means botanical or plant-based. Despite the word botanical on the bottle, I always read the label of ingredients on the back.

NOTE: As a Dr. Harvey’s brand ambassador, I can highly recommend these products.

How To Choose A Safe Dog Shampoo

“When choosing a general shampoo for your pets, it’s important that you select an option that is appropriate for your canine or feline companion over those created for humans,” says Patrick Mahaney, VMD/CVA. “Be especially cautious in choosing a shampoo for your cat, as they are extremely sensitive to the toxic effects of essential oils — tea tree oil, etc.”

Here are our top tips on choosing a dog shampoo that is best for your dog:

  • Be sure the ingredients are visibly listed on the dog shampoo label and choose one without the dangerous ingredients listed above.
  • Don’t use antifungal, antibacterial, or antiparasitic shampoos unless your vet prescribed it. You want the good bacteria to remain on your dog’s skin.
  • Avoid oatmeal shampoo if your dog is sensitive to oatmeal in general. Dogs lick themselves and groom themselves, leading to more issues. Dr. Dodds indicates grain-based shampoos may contribute to skin fungus and bacteria.
  • Avoid rosemary as an ingredient if your dog is epileptic or has seizures. Rosemary is safe for most dogs, per Dr. Dodds, but it can promote seizures in “vulnerable dogs.”
  • Consider the dog’s coat and if he has an undercoat that needs special cleansing. For example, French Bulldogs have low-density hair but Cocker Spaniels have thicker hair.
  • If it says biodegradable on the label, it means the soap residue won’t harm your water supply nor the dog’s coat.
  • Understand the FDA is not regulating pet shampoos, so ignore the front of the bottle and make sure you know what’s actually inside.
  • Try to avoid dyes and colorants like D&C Blue, D&C Yellow, and anything made with coal tar.
  • If it says sulfate-free, it can still contain chemicals, such as propylene glycol, sodium myristate, and any number of scary things. Read closely.
  • Use extreme caution with flea and tick shampoos. These are primarily a thing of the past and while the chemicals may temporarily get rid of the pests, they aren’t long-lasting to prevent a re-infestation.
  • FAQ

    What shampoos should dogs avoid?

    Hartz also says “While any registered pesticide product for use with companion animals can cause an adverse reaction in some animals, reports of seizures associated with this product are extremely rare.”

    What can trigger a seizure in a dog?

    So if you see any of these names on the package, avoid the product: Bromopol, Doazolidinyl urea, DMDM Hydantoin (often mis-typed on dog shampoo bottles as DHDH hydantoin), Imidazolidinyl urea, Quaternium-7, -15, -31, -61, and Sodium hydroxymethylglycinate.

    What scents can trigger seizures in dogs?

    The main underlying causes of seizures in dogs can include:
    • Epilepsy.
    • Heat Exhaustion.
    • Nutritional imbalances such as thiamine deficiency.
    • Low blood sugar levels.
    • Liver disease.
    • Tumors.