A Golden Retriever’s coat is like their own crown, but it is a crown that needs constant care and attention to keep it looking awesome.
There is actually a lot to caring about your golden retriever’s coat, from the brushes you use to the food they eat and everything in between. In this page, I’m going to focus only on the best shampoos for golden retrievers that can keep their coat shiny and beautiful.
As always, my recommendations here are going to be based on time-tested products that either I or someone close to me have personally tried and tested for some time with excellent results.
For more on ethics, please check the disclosure section at the end of the article.
Now, let’s get to my recommendations.
Table of Contents
5 Best Shampoos for Golden Retrievers in 2020
- PET CARE SCIENCES 5-in-1 Shampoo – Best Overall
- Burt’s Bees for Puppies 2-in-1 Shampoo – Best for Puppies
- Adams Plus Flea and Tick Control – Best for Fleas and Ticks
- Pet Pleasant Natural Dog Shampoo with Oatmeal – Best for Itchy Skin
- Veterinary Formula Antiparasitic & Antiseborrheic – Best Medicated Dog Shampoo
|Shampoo||Pricing||Why get it?|
|PET CARE SCIENCES 5-in-1||Best All-in-one|
|Burt’s Bees for Puppies 2-in-1||Best for puppies|
|Adams Plus Flea and Tick Control||Best for fleas and ticks|
|Pet Pleasant Natural||Best for sensitive and itchy skins|
|Veterinary Formula||Best Medicated shampoo (Antiparasitic & Antiseborrheic)|
Living with a Retriever: Recommendations and Sources
- Want the best diet for your dog? Check out the best and healthiest foods for golden retrievers at every age here – Dry, Wet, Homemade Recipes, and Treats!
- Looking for new toys? These toys will prove to be fun, engaging, and will stand their heavy chewing.
- Make them look GLAMOROUS with the best shampoos and conditioners and the best brushes here.
- Taking a walk? These are the best leashes, collars, and harnesses for the buck that you can find.
- Find my list of recommendations here.
The 5 Best Shampoos for Golden Retrievers in 2020
PET CARE SCIENCES 5-in-1 Shampoo – Best Overall
Every dog owner should have an all-in-one shampoo that covers all their basic needs that is always sitting around the house, and for me, this is the Pet Care Sciences 5-in-1 Shampoo.
This one actually goes the extra mile and delivers on its marketing. It works great for cleaning, conditioning, deodorizing, moisturizing, and detangling your retriever’s coat.
It’s also gentle on the dog’s skin and can be used on smaller dogs and dogs with more sensitive skin. The deodorizing actually works and can remove the “dog smell” as it can penetrate the thick double coat relatively easily and with little effort of your side.
It also always leaves my dogs smelling like coconuts, which is something I particularly like, given that I’m the kind of person who lets their dogs snuggle with them closely on couches and beds.
This really is the best all-in-one shampoo you could get for your dog, and It’s often the first recommendation I make for any new dog owners.
Pros VS Cons
- All-in-One: It covers all basis; Cleans, conditions, moisturizes, deodorizes, and detangles their coat.
- Safe: Made from natural ingredients and with noa harmful chemicals
- Gentle: Can be safely used on smaller dogs and dogs with sensitive skin.
- Effective cleaning: Doesn’t need a lot of effort to get deep into the dog’s coat and clean it, leaving it soft, clean, and glowing.
- Smells great: It removes the dog’s odor and leaves them smelling like coconuts
- Is a bit expensive
- Overusing it may lead to dry skin.
The last one I should explain; some reviews on Amazon say that it lead to dry skin, but this has not happened with me before. However, overusing any Dog Shampoo will definitely lead to dry skin, which is very harmful to your dog.
The problem is that some people don’t see the results immediately and so they think that they need to use more of the product, but please don’t do that.
Why Get it?
This is the all-in-one shampoo you need to have around the house to cover most of your needs, and it will almost always be the only dog shampoo you need.
Burt’s Bees for Puppies 2-in-1 Shampoo – Best for Puppies
If you want something for your puppy, just get this one. The Bert’s bees is the perfect shampoo for golden retrievers puppies. It’s really gentle and won’t irritate their skin or eyes.
The shampoo is made from honey, beeswax, buttermilk, and linseed oils with no harmful chemicals. It can soothes and softens the skin and fur and leaves your puppies feeling soft, silky, and fresh.
The shampoo also doesn’t interfere with the dog’s natural oils and is free from fragrances. It was also recommended to me by more than one vet because you can use it with other topical tick or flea treatments and it won’t wash them off.
Pros VS Cons
- Natural Ingredients: Made from only natural ingredients to be not cause any reactions or have side effects.
- Soft on your dog’s skin and coat: It never irritates your dog’s sensitive skin or coat.
- Tearless: It’s really gentle on puppies, not causing them to tear up as other stronger shampoos would.
- Can be used with fleas treatments: It won’t wash off topical fleas or tick treatments.
- Some consider it too light (or too watery)
- Has no smell to it
Why Get it?
It’s the perfect shampoo for puppies; all-natural, doesn’t cause a reaction, very gentle on their skin and coats, and doesn’t dry out their skin. I would recommend it to anyone with a puppy or a dog with sensitive skin that faced issues with other dog shampoos in the past.
Adams Plus Flea and Tick Control – Best for Fleas and Ticks
This item is still relatively new but it’s a really good one. It’s very effective in killing fleas, ticks, and lice, but the main advantage of this product that you don’t find in many other products is that it can also effectively kill flea eggs and larvae.
The product can also be used on dogs with a sensitive skin if used in reasonable amounts (they added some soothing agents such as coconut extract, aloe, and oatmeal).
It can also prevent flea development for up to 28 days after using it because it uses an insect growth regulator (IGR).
Unlike other flea and tick shampoos, this product leaves your dog with a nice, fresh scent.
Neither I or anyone I know have faced any issues with this shampoo and my dogs have never had an allergic reaction to it so far, but you still should use it responsibly.
Pros VS Cons
- Effective in killing fleas, ticks, and lice
- Can kill flea eggs and larvae and stops their growth for up to 4 weeks
- Can be used on dogs with sensitive skin with some caution
- Soothes your dog’s irritated skin
- Smells nice.
- Not safe for older animals – may be too strong.
- Needs caution when used on animals with sensitive skin
Why Get it?
If your four-legged friend has a flea problem and you have tried several products and failed in the past, I highly recommend giving this one a try, sometimes it really does work like magic.
Pet Pleasant Natural Dog Shampoo with Oatmeal – Best for Itchy Skin
If your dog is itchy or if you need something for their sensitive skin, then you should definitely consider this one. The Colloidal Oatmeal Shampoo is a hypoallergenic shampoo for your dog’s dry skin.
It’s also quite soothing for dogs because of the lavender and essential oils used in making it, and I found out that it actually gives the dog a few hours of comfort after each bath I use it in where they don’t scratch or look irritated at all and instead seem to be very comfortable and enjoying themselves.
If you are also looking for something that will pull double duty as a puppy shampoo, then this one is a great option as It can be used on pups that are less than 6 weeks old and is actually tear-free, which is a pleasant bonus.
Pros VS Cons
- Reliefs your dog’s itchy skin
- Gentle on dry and sensitive skin
- Removes odors and leaves the dog smelling fresh and nice
- Provides relief to your dog with every bath
- Leaves no residue
- The bottle design could be easier for more control over dispensing the shampoo
Why Get it?
If your dog’s itchy skin is driving them crazy, then you should definitely try this shampoo. It will provide hours of relief after every shower and helps solve the problem of itching and dry skin with regular use over time.
Veterinary Formula Antiparasitic & Antiseborrheic – Best Medicated Dog Shampoo
If you need a medicated shampoo that actually works, go for this one. I have tried many options before and none of them can really measure up to this one.
The Veterinary Formula Shampoo is a fast acting one, which means that you will start seeing its effects from the first week you start using it. You will be able to see your dog’s inflamed scalp healing, their bald spots regrowing hair, and their itching and scratching start to go away.
I have stuck out to their recommended 2-3 times of use per week and found out I needed to use it less often by the third or fourth week as my dog’s skin problems were almost gone. Of course in more severe cases, you may need more time.
I also like it because it will not remove the topical spot-on flea treatments you use and instead works in parallel to it, treating fungal, bacterial, and parasitic infections.
Pros VS Cons
- Premium Quality for an affordable price
- Immediate relief of the symptoms
- Strong, effective, and safe
- Does not remove topical flea treatments
- Treats bald spots, skin rashes, and itching
- Treats bacterial, fungal, and parasitic infections.
- Too strong for small dogs
Why Get it?
If your dog has skin problems, you should definitely try this one. Their premium quality, effectiveness, and affordable price is a mix you don’t find with other products.
How to pick the Best Shampoos for Your Dog
Golden Retrievers are not the dogs to get if you don’t have the time or effort to invest in caring for them. They are energetic, loving dogs that will take up space in your life, so you should be ready for that.
Their coats, just like their personality, requires attention to stay in top shape. They need to be groomed and bathed often and on a regular basis.
Choosing the right Shampoo for your golden can make a big difference on the health of their coats. Fortunately, there are plenty of really good options out there to choose from.
What makes a Good Shampoo for dogs
- No Harmful Chemicals: Avoid shampoos with harmful chemicals such as Phosphates and Parabens. These chemicals can irritate your dog’s skin and harm their skin and coats on the long term.
- Natural Ingredients: Shampoos made from natural ingredients are better and will give you the results needed with no side effects to worry about.
- Odor Control: Goldens are active dogs that will play whenever and wherever and they can get stinky fast. A shampoo with deodorizing properties can keep them smelling fresh for a while.
- Hypoallergenic: Hypoallergenic Shampoos are made of ingredients that are unlikely to trigger an allergic reaction from your dog and they are naturally formulated.
- Hydration: Your dog’s skin and coat need to stay hydrated to stay healthy, and shampoo with ingredients such as aloe vera and almond oil can have moisturizing and hydration properties which are beneficial for your dog’s coat and skin.
Ingredients to avoid in your dog’s shampoo
Now that you know what to look for, you should also know what to avoid. You should avoid the following ingredients;
- Cocamide DEA: This is an emulsifying agent that has been used in cosmetics for both humans and pets because it can create foam. For generations, it was thought to be good for cleaning and was used in products by mixing the fatty acids of coconut with some chemicals. However, the product was found to be linked to Cancer and the International Agency for Research on Cancer has warned against it.
- L-Sulphates: Another ingredient that was used in cosmetics for decades because it could effectively remove unwanted dirt and grease from dogs’ coats. However, this chemical is an especially harsh one and it was found that it can strip the dog’s coat of its natural oils and cause significant damage to his skin in the process.
- Alcohol: Alcohol can cause your dog’s skin to dry out and can be even toxic for your dog if they’re exposed to large quantities of it.
- Artificial Colors & Fragrances: Any shampoo with artificial colors or fragrances can cause harm to your dog’s skin and can irritate their skin. Find something instead with natural smells and essential oils.
The 5 Different Types of Dog Shampoos
Just like there are different types of shampoos for humans, there are different ones for dogs as well. You only need to focus on the 5 main types of dog shampoos and forget all the other marketing mumbo jumbo that will try to convince you that something you’ve never heard of is the magic solution to your dog’s problems.
Here are the 5 different types of Dog Shampoos to choose from:
- Flea and Tick: This type of shampoo is designed to kill fleas and ticks, and it can be natural or chemical, and both work equally fine and the good brands cause harm to the dog’s skin or coat itself. To get the best results of the flea and tick shampoo you should work it into the dog’s coat and leave it there for 10 minutes before rinsing.
- All-Purpose Shampoo: A quality all-purpose shampoo is something you should always have at home if you want your dog to stay clean and fresh. They are just that; all-purpose and they are your safe go-to option most of the time.
- Puppy Shampoos: Puppy shampoos are kinder to the puppy’s sensitive skin and made from only natural ingredients that will not irritate the puppy.
- Medicated: Medicated Shampoos are designed to help with your dog’s skin conditions. You will find they offer antifungal, antibacterial, and antiseptic benefits or you can find special-purpose shampoos for a certain condition. It’s preferable to consult with your vet before using one on your dog.
- 2 In 1: A 2-in-1 is a shampoo and conditioner together to keep the dog’s skin moisturized and his coat soft to prevent mats and tangles.
Click here to learn how to bathe your golden retriever (and 5 Bonus tips no one will tell you that can make the process much easier).
Frequently Asked Questions
Why is my Golden Retriever losing hair?
If your dog is losing hair all over their body, the cause is more likely hormonal, but if they are losing it in patches and in certain spots only, then it’s likely caused by infection by parasites such as mites.
If the cause is hormonal, the vet will recommend a daily pill that will solve the issue, and if it’s caused by an infection, then a medicated shampoo or another treatment will solve the problem and your dog will regrow the hair as before.
How Bad is Golden Retriever Shedding?
Golden Retrievers shed heavily all-year-around and the shedding gets the strongest in the spring and fall. A regular grooming routine that consists of frequent baths and daily brushing will cut the amount of shedding by up to 90%, but the shedding will never go away.
The good news is that you will learn to live with the hair rather quickly, and it will be a part of your life. If you ignore the grooming routine, however, then you can expect the hair to cover everything in your house. It’ll be like your dog is shedding another dog every couple of months.
Disclosure: As an affiliate, I get commissions from some of the purchases you make through the links I’ve added to this page. However, the provider/website selling the merchandise is the one paying the commission and it comes at no extra cost at all on you (you get the same price as everyone else).
Also, no one tells me what to recommend or how to make the recommendation, and the commissions on the product is not a reason for me to recommend one, as I care more about the authenticity of my brand and the trust my audience has in me than anything else. My opinions are mine, unbiased, and are based only on the quality of the product and the value it offers for its price.