Natural cosmetics instead of chemicals in dog care
The topic of dog grooming is rarely discussed among owners. It only comes up when their beloved four-legged friend has rolled in a natural odor-defying deodorant that challenges human olfactory senses. Or when ticks and fleas are on the rise. Otherwise, dog shampoos or soaps are not worth mentioning, let alone natural cosmetics for dogs. However, natural fur care has nothing to do with indulging spoiled furry kids but rather with health. The majority of dog shampoos available in pet stores are based on the same chemically infused formula as cheap dish soaps at discount stores – nothing that the dog's skin tolerates well. These dangerous substances can not only dry out the skin and cause flakiness but also trigger allergies, disrupt hormonal balance, or even increase the risk of cancer. Nowadays, those who want to avoid the chemical onslaught on their dog's fur can find numerous safe alternatives. Dog shampoos: Same formula, different prices Unlike in the past, the shelves of large pet stores are now groaning under the weight of various grooming products for pets. Numerous dog shampoos catch the eye, catering to light and dark, long and short, straight and curly coats. But if you take a closer look at the label, it often becomes worrisome. Most of the grooming products available in pet stores – regardless of their price – rely on the cheapest surfactants, synthetic preservatives, and questionable parabens. What is advertised, however, is "Aloe Vera," "Tea Tree Oil," "Blueberry Muffin Scent," or "Chamomile Extract." More appearance than reality. Advertisement Laws for dog shampoo and toilet cleaners are the same According to current laws, pet products are not subject to the Cosmetics Regulation that applies to human care products but fall under the Detergents and Cleaning Agents Act (WRG) and the Detergent Regulation. Since dog shampoos and soaps are primarily used on animals rather than humans, there are no efforts to include animal products in the Cosmetics Regulation. This gives manufacturers free rein to choose their formulations, which typically include substances that have no place on dog's skin. Certain parabens, such as isopropyl, isobutyl, phenyl, pentyl, and benzylparaben, as well as salts of isobutylparaben, have been banned from human cosmetics since October 2014. But what can cause cancer in humans is certainly also dangerous for animals. Cheap surfactants, preservatives, and parabens Many common dog products contain chemical preservatives such as ethyl or methylparabens, which are suspected of increasing the risk of breast cancer. Parabens can trigger allergies in dogs and are classified as hormonally active chemicals. Many conventional dog shampoos also contain aggressive surfactants, including sodium laureth sulfate and sodium lauryl sulfate. These cleansing agents severely dry out the dog's skin and often cause allergic reactions and itching. Synthetic surfactants have degreasing and foaming effects and are very cheap to produce. Furthermore, the preservative bronidox (5-bromo-5-nitro-1,3-dioxane) is considered a health-hazardous allergen. PEGs (polyethylene glycols), similar to silicones, disrupt cell walls, promoting the penetration of harmful chemicals into the dog's body.