The Best Cat Shampoos For Dandruff

Regular shampooing can result in a healthier coat and relieve cats of itchy dry skin. We found the best option for tackling dry skin and dandruff to be Earthbath All Natural Shampoo, but many other shampoos also offer great benefits.

Clean cat with healthy coat

@kashlopez / Unsplash

Though most people dread the thought of bathing their cat, it’s an activity that’s very beneficial for you both. Providing you have a reliable and safe cat shampoo to hand, it can vastly improve the health of their coat, eliminate dandruff and even prevent fleas.

In our experience, the best cat shampoo for dandruff is the Earthbath All Natural Shampoo for it’s all natural approach and it’s dry skin tackling abilities. Earthbath also offer a huge variety of scents and shampoos with different health benefits.

We have personal experience using most of the shampoos below and are confident they are paraben free cat shampoos that are entirely safe for use on your cat.

Let’s take a look at some of the other cat dandruff shampoo options that rival our favorite pick.

Best Cat Shampoos For Dry Skin

ImageNameScent
Earthbath All NaturalVarious
TropiClean Pet Shampoo Papaya and Coconut
Wahl Pet ShampooRosemary and Mint
Oster NaturalsOatmeal
Pro Pet Works NaturalLight Cherry

Cat shampoos are a great way to combat itchiness and dry skin, dandruff and even control fleas. Each shampoo brings different benefits to the party, so you should make your decision based on what you think suits your cat best.

You’ll be wanting to check the ingredients and allergy warnings of each product carefully before purchasing, but in a vast majority of cases your cat won’t have a negative reaction to natural cat shampoos.

We’re gonna take a look at some of the options in depth. Here’s a list of the 5 best cat shampoos for dandruff and dry skin.

Earthbath All Natural

This specially formulated natural cat shampoo combines the powers of oatmeal and aloe to soothe skin and address irritation.

The shampoos natural ingredients promote healing by moisturizing sensitive skin and removing the urge for a cat to scratch the area.

A completely natural formula (the clue is in the name!) which is soap free and pH-balanced reduces the chances of any allergic reaction to as close to 0% as possible.

It removed odors from your cat’s fur and can tackle even the most stubborn dandruff in as little as two washes, leaving your cat smelling better than ever and super soft to the touch.

It’s safe for use on cats over 6 weeks old, and because it’s soap free, it won’t wash away any topical flea treatments that have been applied recently.

It’s our favorite for it’s entirely natural approach to improving dry skin and dandruff.

The earthbath cat shampoo range features a whole host of different shampoos with various scents and health benefits. You can check out more about the manufacturer and the variations available using the button above.

TropiClean Pet Shampoo

A close runner up to our best cat shampoo for dandruff is the TropiClean Papaya & Coconut shampoo.

It has a whole range of natural botanicals that brings your cat’s coat to life and revitalizes dry skin.

Doubling as a conditioner, means that it’ll not only remove dandruff and reduce irritation, but also free your cat’s coat of any stubborn tangles they haven’t been able to manage themselves.

A combination of mango, kiwi, papaya & coconut works to boost moisture and add a shine to your cat’s coat that’s hard to find with any other dry skin cat shampoo.

It rinses quickly and leaves no residue since it’s soap free and completely natural.

We were also impressed with how long the scent lasted, it isn’t overpowering either, which is fantastic.

Because it’s also sold in large quantities, buying this shampoo in bulk easily gives you one of the best deals on cat shampoo around.

Wahl Pet Shampoo

This might be the wildcard pick of our best dandruff shampoos for cats, but we’ll explain why it earned it’s place on our list.

This is primarily a shampoo for fleas & ticks, and you might think it strange that we chose this as a dandruff beating cat shampoo. Especially given that Wahl have oatmeal shampoo variant of the same product.

The truth is though, it’s perfectly viable as a cure for dry skin in cats. We saw the exact same results with this shampoo as we did with their oatmeal version, and got the flea & tick control as a bonus.

It’s paraben free, ph balanced plant derived formula is perfect for soothing dry skin and reducing dandruff flakes in cat fur.

It leaves a pleasant rosemary scent that is fairly subtle when compared to the other shampoos on our list, but we actually thought this was for the best.

Oster Naturals

Oster’s oatmeal cat shampoo is perfect for dealing with feline dandruff.

It’s formulated to deoderize, moisturize and condition the fur with a combination of coconut based cleansers and natural oatmeal extract (2%).

The rich vanilla smell is pleasant, though it is probably the strongest sent on our list (they aren’t joking about it being rich!). Our kitty didn’t seem to mind at all though.

It has no dyes, parabens or alcohols and the ingredients are all 100% biodegradable.

Our one tiny gripe with this shampoo is that it’s very thin, and it pours out of the bottle really quickly. This meant we ended up using a lot more than we probably needed, and as such it didn’t last very long (oops!).

Despite our clumsiness, it’s a solid all round dandruff shampoo that will give your cat’s coat a lovely shine and keep their skin well hydrated.

Pro Pet Works Natural

Made in the USA, this oatmeal pet shampoo and conditioner tackles dandruff remarkably well.

Manufactured with all natural ingredients, it utilizes Vitamin E, Aloe Vera, and natural oatmeal extracts to tackle all the problems associated with dry skin in cats.

It’s hypoallergenic, making it a fantastic choice for cats that are prone to bad reactions to even natural ingredients.

It contains almond oil, and leaves a lovely cherry almond scent that’s quite subtle.

The detangling properties of this cat shampoo are astonishing. After just a single wash our cat’s fur was smooth, even, and completely free of knots and tangles even at the root level.

It’s also suitable for use alongside flea treatments, though it doesn’t act on fleas itself, and can be used as regularly as you fancy.

A guide to cat shampoo

While cats possess the natural ability to keep themselves squeaky clean at all times, sometimes they need a bit of a helping hand from us. This is mainly down to their tendency to rub themselves on everything.

Felines are highly flexible. It’s a trait that allows them to reach every inch of their body while grooming, but doesn’t necessarily cover all areas of concern.

Playing an active role in your cats grooming process can help prevent dangerous situations, especially if the cat has rubbed itself on an irritating or poisonous substance.

How to shampoo your cat

It’s common knowledge that cats detest water and the unlucky soul trying to put them in water is likely to be clawed to bits. In this section we will discus some tips on how to bathe your cat without getting mauled.

A cat owner must be alive to the fact that the bathing process is usually quite stressful to the cat and that’s why they react violently.

With this in mind, you should strive to ensure that the cat is as comfortable as possible during the bathing process.

A good way of ensuring that you keep the bathing experience safe and positive for both the cat and yourself is to begin bathing the cat with cat shampoo regularly from a young age.

This makes the bathing experience a normal occurrence and as it grows it will be less likely to react violently.

Cat owners who adopt cats that have never been bathed may need to approach the bathing process with caution. Here are 5 tips that should help you out.

Timing is key

A cat owner should observe his/her cat’s timetable. The best time to wash your cat is when the cat is mellow. This mellow state can be achieved by letting your cat play with a toy for a while or by interacting with them in a way that tires them out.

Trying to bathe your cat while it’s in the middle of something (or on it’s way out for a pee) will not be appreciated at all.

Trim its claws

Clipping your cat’s nails can be beneficial for their overall health if done correctly and using a veterinarian recommended cat nail clipper. Though in the context of bathing, this is purely for the purpose of protecting yourself.

Bathing Materials

Being well prepared for the bathing session will greatly improve the chances of a smooth experience for both the cat and yourself. Be sure to have all the bathing materials (towel, brush, shampoo) within your reach so as to avoid confusion and delay.

Brushing

Brushing plays an essential part in the bathing process. Brushing gently can remove dead or dry skin, mats and debris. Mats present a challenge during bathing because they shrink when they are wet, so be careful not to be too rigorous.

Use warm water

Veterinarian doctors recommend warm water when bathing pets like cats and dogs. When bathing a cat, you can either use a sink or a bath tub.

Sinks are ideal for kittens and small cats, since they’re generally at a perfect height for you to control the cat, while bath tubs are necessary for larger cats.

Do not douse your cat with water all at once. It is far more likely to respond better to a gentle introduction to like-warm water.

After the cat has been introduced to the warm water, apply some shampoo gently to it and lather it slowly and calmly.

The best cat shampoos for dandruff and dry skin should not contain the following things;

  • Petrochemicals
  • Parabens
  • Artificial dyes
  • Sodium laurel sulfate

Does cat shampoo eliminate fleas?

Fleas pose a serious health problem to pets if not treated or controlled promptly.

Where the infestation is mild, fleas can cause you and your cat skin irritations and infections.

You should work with your veterinarian to ensure that you keep your cat safe and get them to suggest a suitable flea treatment.

Some products that are used to treat fleas can be hazardous to your pet or provoke allergic reactions. Cat owners must be very careful when choosing a proper cat shampoo for flea control.

Finding the best cat shampoo for fleas can be a tricky affair. This is partly down to there being so many products in the market.

Cat shampoos for fleas are quite effective on the short term; they will be able to eliminate all the adult fleas on the cat. When the cat is thoroughly rinsed after bathing most of the shampoo is washed off.

You’re best opting for shampoo that specializes in dealing with fleas rather than dealing with dandruff, though some will be able to handle both effectively.

It’s important to remember that using shampoo for cat fleas is not a permanent solution to those cat owners with a serious flea problem. It should be used as a preventative measure alongside a proper flea treatment.

Last but not least never use dog flea products on your cat. Cat’s livers are not able to produce the same enzymes that get rid of toxic substances.

Cat shampoo for dry skin and dandruff

Dandruff is a very common problem in cats. Vets often suggest that all cats will at some point experience this problem, as it usually comes with age.

Cats with long hair will develop this problem sooner, and no matter how much they lick themselves it’s likely they will not be able to get rid of dandruff flakes by themselves.

The dandruff on your kitty is most commonly caused by dry skin, but in some cases can be an indication of some sort of infection.

If you notice your cat’s dandruff becoming worse, and seeing signs of discomfort it would be sensible to visit the vet.

As with us humans, dandruff is a often a sign of vitamin deficiency so adding fish to the cat’s diet could go a long way into ensuring the problem is nipped in the bud.

Cats that are overweight may need to be helped to clean spots they can’t reach. Using a proper dandruff shampoo regularly can help greatly reduce the problem.

Do not use human shampoo, dog shampoo, or any other shampoo. This is likely to escalate the situation by causing additional dryness and irritation.

When choosing which cat shampoo to buy, you should prefer a shampoo made of natural compounds. They are more effective in reducing dander and pose very little risk of causing irritation to the cat’s skin.

How does cat shampoo affect a cat’s coat and skin?

It’s a fairly common thing for cats to develop skin conditions. Skin conditions are more likely to affect adult cats more than younger ones.

Cats naturally groom themselves and as a result of this, their skin is frequently wet. Overgrooming can cause cats to shed fur unnecessarily and lead a rough appearance and feel to their coat.

Focus on cat shampoos for shedding if you believe over grooming to be an issue.

Vets advise the use of shampoos that contain oatmeal extract and aloe vera. These natural products nourish and revitalize the skin and help reduce itching, dryness, dandruff and other irritations.

Medicated shampoos are very good at combating skin conditions which are caused by parasites and fungi. These shampoos are very effective and are also surprisingly easy on the wallet, though you should not use them without veterinarian advice first.

Medicated shampoos typically have very few side effects on cats, but most skin conditions that require the use of medicated shampoo can be avoided if a cat is regularly bathed using a suitable shampoo for dry skin.

Some shampoos contain nutrients that are vital for fur and skin health. Moisturizers are very important because they lubricate, rehydrate and soften your cat’s skin.

Shampoos can also be effective in treating any allergic reactions that your cat might have. They do so by removing allergens on the skin and allergens that have been trapped in their fur.

Allergies can cause your cat unnecessary stress and discomfort. More often than not there will be a specific shampoo designed to fight these allergies effectively.