Is Phenoxyethanol really an all natural dog shampoo ingredient? Is it safer than paraben?
How can you tell dog shampoo is truly natural, safe and non-toxic?
Pet parents who care about ingredients should read this.
Sodium hydroxymethylglycinate is a preservative based on the naturally occurring amino acid glycine. Does that mean the preservative is natural?
We've got the answer!
Are Your Dog's Shampoo Ingredients Really Safe?
Tired or seeing so many (so called) "organic dog shampoos" on the market that contain synthetic chemicals?
4-Legger has created a dog shampoo ingredient database where pet parents can quickly identify if an ingredient is really safe or if it is in fact a synthetic chemical with links to safety concerns.
Grab your dog's shampoo bottle and look up a few ingredients. You may be shocked at what you find!
Can a dog shampoo be organic and contain paraben?
Should you risk using a dog shampoo that contains parabens on your dog?
We look at the scientific evidence on parabens so you can decide.
Think you're protecting your dog by using antibacterial dog shampoo?
Learn the truth about antibacterial dog shampoo and why it is important to the long term health of your furry family member!
How do you answer that question?
We think a dog dressed as a bumble bee is still a dog wearing a cute disguise. It is still however a dog.
The same question could be asked of DMDM Hydantoin. Is it still formaldehyde? Find out in the ingredient deep dive blog!
Phenoxyethanol is used primarily as a preservative and sometimes as a disinfectant in dog grooming products.
While it is an organic compound, that doesn't mean that it is certified organic. Let's dive in and see what this means in terms of safety for your dog!
Ok. The Methyl sisters aren't dogs but these dogs do kinda look like sisters and they were way cuter than chemical structures!
The methyl sisters are two preservatives you find in many so called "natural" dog shampoos. Discover the true origin of these preservatives in Meet the Methyl Sisters!
Your furry family member is scratching... and scratching... and scratching. They are miserable. You are miserable.
Did you know that traditional pet grooming products have links to dry and itchy skin?
Someone recently searched the 4-Legger website for "benzyl benzoate" and there zero search results. We decided to fix that!
What is benzyl benzoate, when might it be used, and is it safe? We have the answers!
The oils on your dog's skin and coat give your dog its distinct odor. They also serve to protect your dog against environmental toxins and are important for healthy skin and coat. Dirt and pollution accumulate naturally on a daily basis and need to be removed from the skin and scalp so the follicle remains clear, balanced, breathing and growing.
Waterless dog shampoo is intended to absorb excess oils - making the coat appear less oily and "clean".
In fact, waterless dog shampoo retains the environmental toxins on your dog's skin and coat where they can then lick it off and ingest it!
Want to see what they may be ingesting? Take a look...
Buying a natural dog shampoo isn't easy these days. Manufacturers have learned that adding the word “natural” to dog grooming product labels equals increased sales and higher prices.
Channel your inner bloodhound and learn how to discern between a truly naturally shampoo an imposter! Then, pin our infographic to help make smart decisions for you and your dog!
Research has established that artificial fragrance and colors are THE most common cause of allergic reactions in humans. Why not dogs? The research hasn't been done but it stands to reason since these synthetic ingredients have been linked to serious health problems such as cancer and reproductive and developmental toxicity.
You may not see an immediate change in your dog's skin from using a product with an artificial color or fragrance and blow off the health concerns. You will wake up when your dog's skin becomes infected, is itching/scratching, has an obvious infection, or is diagnosed with cancer or some other serious health condition.
Learn more about the hidden dangers of artificial color and fragrances...
So, what is TEA?
TEA, MEA, and DEA are in a group of chemicals called ethanolamines. The ethanolamines are made from alcohol (ethanol) and proteins (amines) that have ammonia-like odors. Of course, manufacturers use artificial fragrance to cover up the ammonia-like odors so you don't smell them.
What do they do?
Ethanolamines are popular in dog shampoo as they create a creamy and thick texture with lots of foam.
Why Should You Be Concerned?
When ethanolamines are used in the same product as certain preservatives or other ingredients, they break down into nitrogen and can form what is called nitrosamines. The nitrosamines are a class of chemicals that are are thought to be carcinogenic, have reproductive toxicity, developmental toxicity, and organ system toxicity.
While there are a number of chemical ingredients that can make a product sudsy and produce a lot of lather, the most commonly used are the sulfates. Sulfates are detergents that make the product lather, give the appearance of sleek and shiny fur/hair, and capture the dirt that washes out in the rinse. The sulfates also strip the natural oils from your dog's skin/coat and irritate their skin. Unless the irritations become infected, you will likely never notice as you don't see their skin under all that fur/hair!
Learn more about sulfates and their cancer causing byproducts in Lesson 3 of buying a safe and non-toxic dog shampoo.
Lesson 2 looks at preservatives - the chemical substances used to prevent food or other materials (such as your pet’s shampoo) from going bad.
Unless you make a product at home and kept it refrigerated, you do want “something” in your product to keep it from growing bad stuff. Otherwise, you and your pet could get sick from what is growing in it (mold, fungus, yeast, or bacteria).
Let’s look at the difference between USDA certified organic dog shampoo and other dog shampoo.
Did you know that Amazon.com boasts over 3600 products under "dog shampoo" in the category of Pet Supplies? How many different brands of dog shampoo are on the shelves in your local pet supply store?
There are so many pet care products and shampoos that they are broken into sub-categories: Deodorizing (also called Odor Control), Medicated, Natural, Tearless, Whitening, Dematting, Flea and Tick, Itch Relief, Sensitive Skin, Hyopallergenic, and the list goes on...
Saponification refers to the process by which a vegetable oil is turned into soap! It's a simple reaction that occurs when an oil, like coconut, olive or jojoba is mixed with an alkali and results in two products: soap and glycerin.
Literally, saponification means "soap-making" and oils are chosen based on what final properties of soap is desired. For instance, if you saponify coconut oil, the result is a very bubbly and glycerin-rich soap. Glycerin is an important product for its usefulness in helping retain moisture and prevent dry, itchy skin. Olive oil creates a very creamy soap that is rich with antioxidants.
The greenwashing of products REALLY upsets us! Today, we look at something that just left me feeling like a cartoon with question marks in my head. Here is what I read:
Let's break down this bullet. It is both without soap and without detergent yet it contains "naturally derived ingredients with a proprietary blend of cleaners" (blah blah blah). Soap and detergent are not the same thing. Soaps are produced from NATURAL products while detergents are SYNTHETIC (or man-made) cleaners.
Like many consumers, we believed if something said "natural" it was "safe". We learned that there are NO industry regulations for what can be labeled as "natural" and "organic".
We read about "greenwashing" - making things sound healthy and natural when in reality they are far from what we have in our minds as "natural or organic". Unless a product is USDA certified to food grade standards, it is NOT organic.