What do you picture when someone says the word “Bulldog”?
The chances are an image pops into your mind of a stocky, short-coated, flat-faced breed with distinctive wrinkles on his face.
Indeed, those wrinkles go a long way to being the signature of a bulldog’s looks, with each dog being very much their character.
But in those wrinkles lies a story that is highly relevant when choosing the best shampoos for bulldogs.
Top 8 Best Shampoos for Bulldogs
Whilst the latter is true, bulldogs are beset with skin problems because of those characteristic skin folds. In theory, the bulldogs’ short coat should be easy to care for; after all, he has no long flowing locks to get into a tangle.
You see Mother Nature never intended for furred-skin to rub against furred-skin, such as happens with a bulldog’s wrinkles.
Not only do the hairs traumatize the piece of skin they rub against, but the deep valleys hidden in between those folds as warm and humid.
That combination of irritation, warmth, and moisture makes the perfect breeding ground for bacteria, and predispose the bulldog breed to a condition known as skin fold dermatitis.
Thus when deciding on the best shampoo for a bulldog you need to be aware of the skin problems your bulldog may be predisposed to, and choose a formulation best suited to his needs.
For example, some bulldogs are prone to yeast overgrowth in their skin folds, which makes a shampoo with antifungal properties the ideal choice to keep skin and hair healthy and itch-free.
Another common problem is that bulldog skin tends to produce a lot of grease.
The trick is to find a shampoo that hits that sweet spot between cleansing effectively but without stripping out the natural oils.
This is important because over-dry skin is more vulnerable to infection and as we know, those skin folds are the perfect breeding ground for bacteria.
What is the best shampoo for a puppy? Burt’s Bees!
Oh my! If there’s one thing even cuter than a bulldog it’s a bulldog puppy.
Those adorable wrinkly faces on a baby-face, with a body designed for tucking under an arm and cuddling, is just too delectable for words.
But along with all that cuteness comes a puppy’s natural love of investigating the world around them, and getting into all sorts of trouble…which usually involves mud (at best!)
Of course bathing a puppy comes with a whole raft of new rules, as you want to be sure the product is ultra-gentle and isn’t going to sting their eyes when they inevitably wriggle and get shampoo where it shouldn’t go.
The best puppy shampoo is Burt’s Bees, which is soap-free, as well as being free from artificial colorants and chemicals such as sulfates, also being pH balanced for a puppy’s delicate skin.
Burt’s Bees is a well-known brand amongst human personal care, having started out using the natural properties of honey and wax to condition and soften human skin.
The company uses that same ethos, of harnessing the benefits of natural ingredients, but transferred it over to pet care.
For a tearless product, with a 2 in 1 cleansing action that contains wholesome sounding ingredients such as honey, wax, and linseed oil, this Burt’s Bees is a good choice for any puppy.
Perhaps you’re blessed with a bulldog with a healthy skin and coat, which is not particularly prone to stains.
This being the case the best shampoo for a bulldog is one that’s gentle, moisturizing, smells great, and doesn’t cost the earth (either in terms of your pocket or the planet.)
Look no further than Earthbath!
Scented with vanilla and almond, this all-natural shampoo sounds good enough to eat (but don’t!)
In this day and age, we tend to assume a product does what it says on the label, but increasingly this isn’t enough to meet the most exacting demands.
These days we also want a product that contains natural ingredients and is also biodegradable so it doesn’t harm either our pet or the environment.
It is on this mission to be kind to pet and planet that the Earthbath brand is founded.
They use the natural cleansing power of natural ingredients such as oatmeal, coconut oil, and almond oil, and are free from controversial chemicals such as sulfates and DEAs.
The Earthbath is for bulldogs that don’t have specific skin or coat health issues, but you wish them to achieve the most luxurious coat they can and smell nice into the deal.
However, it’s fair to say that a dog can be allergic to anything, even natural ingredients, so those dogs could well have reacted even to the mildest alternatives.
Think of this as a person with hay fever entering a room with a vase of flowers.
The flowers are natural and not in any way at fault, and yet they trigger a reaction in the person who is sensitive to them.
You want to keep your dog clean and smelling fresh, but sometimes a full bath just isn’t practical.
For example, if you have an older dog, you may not want to bath them in cold weather, or it might be you have a bad back and lifting a dog in and out of a bath isn’t possible.
There’s also the active dog that rolls in what he shouldn’t or those times on vacation when you don’t have the facilities to wet shampoo your dog.
When looking for a dry shampoo for bulldogs that matches your needs, the Paw Choice could be the answer.
This is a foaming mousse that you squirt onto the dog’s coat, leave to dry, and then wipe away.
It works using a natural coconut cleansing formula and is free from harsh chemicals.
The product has a pleasant mango and pomegranate scent, but best of all it doesn’t work by hiding or masking bad smells, but by getting to grips with the bacteria and grease that cause them.
This product from Paw Choice is widely loved and regarded as the go-to dry option for difficult to wash dogs.
Curaseb is the go-to shampoo for bulldogs with problem skin. If your dog is itchy and his coat feels greasy to the touch or the skin has turned dark and is beginning to look a bit like rhino hide, then give this treatment shampoo a go.
The reason is it’s a skin treatment and contains two active ingredients: Chlorhexidine and miconazole.
The first of these is an antibacterial and the second is an antifungal.
OK, so why would you use a treatment shampoo on a healthy coat?
Well, fair point, you wouldn’t. Save the Curaseb for the problem dog who suffers from skin fold infections.
But if this sounds like your dog, then this product is what you need. However, there are a few points to be aware of.
This is strong stuff, so it’s best to wear gloves whilst applying it.
Also, to kill yeast the shampoo needs to be left in contact with the skin for a full 10 minutes, and then rinsed off well.
And then this needs repeating every 2 – 3 days until things are brought under control.
Not too bad in hot weather when you can leave your dog to romp around outdoors, but trickier in the winter.
BEXLEY LABS is another medicated shampoo that isn’t suitable for all skin types but could well be the best dog shampoo for bulldogs with certain types of problem skin.
Ok, so first out let’s say that if your bulldog has soft supple skin and a naturally silky shiny coat, then do not use this.
You simply don’t need to and shampooing with CuraBenz could over-dry the skin.
However, if your bulldog has greasy skin that’s prone to be a little bit…well…smelly, then consider CuraBenz.
In a similar way to Malaseb, this is another medicated shampoo, but it works differently.
Whereas Malaseb contains anti-yeast ingredients, CuraBenz has a ‘follicle flushing’ action.
A follicle flushing action.
If you’re wondering why in the world anyone wants to flush their bulldog’s follicles or indeed wonders what a follicle is, then here is the answer.
The follicle is the shaft in which each hair grows.
Into each follicle empties a sebaceous gland that produces the sebums and oils that condition the coat and make it water-resistant.
The only thing is bulldogs often have overactive oil-glands, which makes their coat feel tacky to the touch.
Also, that grease encourages bacterial growth, so it’s not unusual for hairs to fall out leaving bald patches, because of their unhealthy follicles.
The active ingredient is benzoyl peroxide, which is coincidentally what’s contained in a lot of human anti-acne preparations (at a different concentration.)
Pay it due respect, and if in doubt get a diagnosis from your vet before using for problem skin, but the BEXLEY LABS could well be a great tool to help you control long term grease and oil problems that plague your bulldog.
OK, so your bulldog doesn’t have problem skin but has a light-colored coat that shows up dirt and mud, like spilled red wine on a white carpet.
Indeed, perhaps he’s a licker and his paws are constantly rust-stained from saliva.
If this is the case you don’t need a medicated shampoo but one that’s gentle on the skin but efficient at cleaning away stains.
Healthy Breeds does what it says on the label.
This product has an oatmeal base, so its cleansing properties are gentle on the skin and leave it well-balanced rather than dry.
As part of the Healthy Breeds range it is designed to tackle specific problems, which in this case is getting rid of stains on the bulldog’s light-coat.
It will also leave your butch bulldog with a pleasant tropical scent lingering in his wake.
Bright Whitening cleans the hair effectively but without the use of harsh, stripping chemicals, and contains added vitamins for better coat health.
Indeed, regular use of the Healthy Breeds promotes a soft, shiny, touchable coat that looks pristinely clean.
Other benefits include a reduction in shedding (always a boon!) as well as conditioning and detangling effect.
This means that subsequent brushing is going to be easier and help to keep the coat in good order.
Best Conditioner for Bulldogs
Keep your bulldog’s coat in good condition and his skin healthy is of great benefit not only to his appearance but to reduce the risk of allergic reactions.
A useful tool to help you maintain that ideal environment is to use the best conditioner for bulldogs.
Our choice: Vet’s Best
When a sensitive dog comes into contact with a grass sap or pollen that he is allergic to, the reaction is not triggered by breathing in the allergen but by it settling on his skin.
That dogs absorb allergens such as pollens, via their skin, is a fact much misunderstood.
It is increasingly recognized that the role of the skin as a barrier, or shield against the action of allergens, is crucial to alleviating itchiness.
Hence it is so important not to over-dry the skin which would weaken its protective properties.
However, it’s also beneficial to bathe your dog regularly to wash allergens away from the surface and reduce their time in contact with the skin.
Using an appropriate shampoo is essential, and of extra benefit think about moisturizing the skin and conditioning the coat.
A simple way to do this is a leave-in conditioner, which frees you from the extra hassle of applying a product and then rinsing it off.
Vet’s Best Moisture Mist is great for bulldogs as it’s easy to use, doesn’t leave the coat sticky, and is packed with natural ingredients.
Moisture Mist contains aloe vera, cucumber extract, sage, and vitamins for maximum comfort and benefit to your bulldog’s coat.
Best Shampoo for Itchy Bulldog
The roughy-toughy bulldog is a big baby at heart with a sensitive skin to match.
The bulldog is a breed prone to allergies, which manifests itself as an itchy skin.
This gives the owner a double dilemma because it helps to wash allergens out of your dog’s coat but he’s very sensitive to anything that comes into contact with his skin.
What you need is a product for your itchy canine that has soothing properties, relieves itchiness, moisturizes, but doesn’t contain chemicals or fragrances that the dog might react to.
Pro Pet products are so gentle it can be used on notoriously sensitive species such as cats and rabbits.
Smelling pleasantly of cherries and almonds, it uses ingredients from nature such as almond oil, oatmeal, and aloe that are naturally cleansing but moisturizing.
Its pH is in sympathy with canine skin, it is soap and paraben-free, and full of natural ingredients that are kind to the environment.
From the infections associated with skin folds to a tendency to greasy skin and allergies, the bulldog is a breed that benefits from conscientious bathing regularly. And finally, bulldog owners know that although their dog has short hair, this doesn’t always mean a low maintenance coat.
The trick to successful skin-care is to use the right product for the job.
This varies depending on the individual nature of your dog’s issues.
In the first instance, a vet checkup will help guide you as to what your dog’s issues are so that you can move forward using the right shampoo.
As with any dog, the best results are obtained when you wet the coat thoroughly first, lather well, then rinse with clean water until it runs clear.
Then towel dry your dog, not forgetting to get down into all those wrinkles.
Now all you have to do is sit back and enjoy stroking your super-soft bulldog and breathing in that lovely fresh smell. Enjoy!
8 Best Shampoos for Bulldogs
Here are the ratings for the top 8 Bulldog shampoos.
Burt’s Bees for Puppies
Pro Pet Works