Whether you’re a devoted dog owner or a passionate dog groomer, you want to make sure that your furry friends are happy and healthy, both inside and out. Your dog's grooming routine plays a big role in their overall health, especially the topical products you choose to use.
Just like humans, your dog's largest organ is their skin, and since it’s incredibly porous it will absorb whatever you put on it. Many dog shampoos and conditioners contain toxic chemicals that can make their way into your dog’s bloodstream, so you need to be very mindful about the products you buy.
It’s important to stick with natural and organic pet care products and only use an organic dog conditioner to ensure that no nasty chemicals end up causing adverse impacts on your dogs' health. It should always be proven safe and gentle, using only certified natural and organic ingredients. But where do you start? How do you choose the best organic dog conditioner? By the end of this guide, you’ll have all the information you need to make an informed choice!
Do you need to use conditioner on your dog?
If you aren’t currently using a dog conditioner as part of your dog grooming routine, then we highly recommend starting. Dogs are notorious for having dry and sensitive skin, and many breeds are prone to matting. The majority of dog breeds will benefit from the use of a dog conditioner as it helps to soothe and protect their skin and soften their coat to help prevent matting and tangles. Dog conditioner is also important to replenish the moisture that is lost during the shampooing process, and it also creates a protective layer on the hair cuticle and skin. This layer is essential to seal the cuticle and protect the coat from environmental damage and pollutants. Beyond the functional benefits, using a dog conditioner will give their coat a shiny and lustrous finish.
Conditioner balances the skins microbiome after being cleansed by shampoo.
You should NEVER skip conditioner as part of your dogs grooming route, even if they have a short coat. Conditioner balances back the skin after being cleansed and stripped by shampoo. Even if you are using sulfate-free shampoos Doglyness, we have to be careful about the skin’s microbiome.
Do you know about the follicles and pores of your dog's coat?
Follicles and pores are sometimes used interchangeably and other times referred to as two different things. In truth, the pore is simply the opening upon the skin of the hair follicle, which extends downward through several layers of skin.
If a hair follicle were a tall chimney, the pore would be the opening at the top of the chimney. Instead of emitting smoke, the follicle emits a shaft of hair. Skin cells are constantly dying inside the follicle. Additionally, small sebaceous glands located inside the follicle produce oil called sebum which protects dogs from environmental impacts, allergens, dry skin, and various of diseases. This sebum balances the immunology system of the dog and acts as a protective shield.
Conditioner refortifies the cuticle with a protective coating, allowing the hair to grow and not break easily. When the hair is exposed to the outside world, the cuticle, or outer lining, gets damaged until it ultimately breaks. Quality conditioner fills in those injuries and coats the hair to assist the cuticle. They also smooth the hair, detangle it, increase shine, reduce frizz, and make it feel nicer to maintain and work with.
Conditioner refortifies the cuticle with a protective coating helping hair grow.
What is an organic dog conditioner?
An organic dog conditioner is a conditioning product made from natural, certified organic ingredients. These ingredients are derived from plants, fruits, and other natural sources and are free from harsh chemicals, artificial fragrances, and synthetic ingredients. Organic dog conditioners are designed to nourish and hydrate your dog's skin and coat, leaving it healthy, shiny, and soft while only using certified organic ingredients that won’t harm your dog. But an organic dog conditioner is different from one labelled as a “natural” dog conditioner. And it’s important to understand the difference and what to look out for when choosing a dog conditioner so you can make a more educated decision.
If a product is simply labelled as natural, that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s organic. In fact, it probably isn’t. Natural means that the ingredients have come from a natural source, but there is still a lack of regulation and guidelines around what you can call natural, which can often lead to greenwashing. Instead, choose products that are certified organic, as there are strict standards that companies need to adhere to in order to legally label a product organic. Third-party institutes like ECOGEA can provide these certifications, but companies must meet their composition rule summary and be able to prove the natural origin of all ingredients. If you see the certified organic label on a dog conditioner, you can trust that the ingredients are safe, free of chemicals, and environmentally friendly.
Benefits of Using an Organic Dog Conditioner
Using an organic dog conditioner has numerous benefits for your dog (and for you too!). Some of the most significant benefits include:
1. Supports a healthy coat
Proper coat care isn’t just about looks. It’s about keeping your pup's skin and coat healthy and strong to protect against environmental elements. Organic dog conditioners contain natural ingredients that nourish and hydrate your dog's coat, helping to fortify and strengthen the cuticle. The natural ingredients found in organic dog conditioners are often packed with vitamins and proteins that are essential to a healthy coat, which combat breakage and dryness.
Using an organic dog conditioner has numerous benefits for your dog.
2. No harsh chemicals
Unlike harsh chemicals and synthetic ingredients, organic dog conditioners are free from irritants and allergens, making them suitable for dogs with allergies and other skin conditions. Many dog shampoos and conditioners contain endocrine-disrupting toxins like phthalates, parabens and SLS. These are all known carcinogens that can have devastating impacts on your dogs' reproductive and immune systems. These toxins can accumulate in your dog's body over time and cause serious problems. By using an organic dog conditioner, you can trust that all ingredients are not only safe to use on your dog but are beneficial to them as well. And since you’re going to be applying the product to your dog and it’s going to be all over your hands, it’s safer for your health too (especially if you’re grooming multiple dogs a day). Dog's coats and skin will always respond better to natural products that are compatible with their fundamental needs for a long, happy and healthy life. Start reading the fine print on labels! Here is a list of nasty chemicals to watch out for.
3. Environmentally friendly
Organic dog conditioners are made with natural, plant-based ingredients that are biodegradable and won’t pollute the air, land or water like chemical-laden products. The products we use inevitably go down our drains and back into the earth, and organic dog conditioners will do no harm. On top of that, organic ingredients are grown and produced using sustainable practices that work to minimize any negative impacts on the environment. They don’t use pesticides or chemical fertilizers, which reduces pollution from runoff and supports the health of the soil and preserves soil biodiversity.
Many brands that use organic ingredients are conscious of their environmental impact and take additional sustainability measures beyond just sourcing organic ingredients. At Doglyness, we package all our organic dog conditioner in plastic-free and compostable bottles and ban any plastic materials in the production, packaging, shipping and storage of our products. We also source ingredients from as close as possible to reduce the distance they have to travel to get to our production facility. All of these initiatives work towards creating a more environmentally friendly pet care industry.
Organic dog conditioner contributes to a more eco-friendly pet care industry.
4. Effective and gentle for dogs with skin conditions
If your dog is prone to rashes, itchy patches and dryness, then an organic dog conditioner will provide them with some much-needed relief. Dogs have incredibly sensitive skin and can be prone to allergic reactions, especially when using non-organic topical products like dog shampoo and conditioner. Even a natural dog conditioner can cause a flare-up if the ingredients aren’t organic, as they may have been grown using toxic pesticides or fertilizers that react with your dog’s skin. An organic dog conditioner with soothing and nourishing ingredients like aloe vera and colloidal oatmeal can reduce inflammation and promote healing.
Choosing the Right Organic Dog Conditioner
Not all organic dog conditioners are created equal. So how can you ensure you choose the right option for your dog? Here are the most important factors to consider:
Look for a conditioner with certified organic ingredients that are free from harsh chemicals and artificial fragrances. Ensure the organic certification is from a reputable third-party entity like ECOGEA so you can trust that all the ingredients are safe. In order to ensure the ingredients are safe, effective and high-quality, it’s a good idea to cross-check any “suspicious” looking ingredients with a trusted entity that analyzes and rates ingredients for their safety. It can be confusing to read the ingredient labels of topical pet care products since most of the ingredients will be unrecognizable. For example, you might see hydrogenated ethylhexyl olivate, which is actually just fatty acid from olive oil. Ideally, the brand will provide more information about their ingredients. At Doglyness, we include the Environmental Working Group (EWG) scores for all ingredients directly on our website, so it’s easy for customers to see the safety of our organic ingredients.
2. Skin and coat type
The next thing to consider when choosing an organic dog conditioner is your dogs' skin and coat type, as well as any skin conditions they may have. Some conditioners are specifically formulated for dogs with dry or sensitive skin, while others are designed for dogs with oily or thick coats. Your dog may be prone to matting, or they may have a dull coat, and you want to add some shine. Identifying your dog’s unique skin and coat type will help you choose an organic dog conditioner that will be most effective for them.
A quality conditioner should:
1. Apply and rinse easily: poorly formulated solutions may not rinse out properly, leading to build on the skin and coat.
2. Nourish: the natural coat texture shouldn't change, but nourishing ingredients should be incorporated into the formula so that the coat can take what it needs, but nothing beyond that. A soft coat doesn't equal a nourished coat. You don't want the coat to be over-softened.
3. Work: improve follicles to support the best natural texture and volume!
A transparent brand is a brand you can trust. Before you purchase an organic dog conditioner, check out the brand online to see if they fully disclose their ingredients list, and how much information they provide about their commitment to natural ingredients and sustainable practices. If you’re unable to find a full ingredients list, or if the brand isn’t willing to supply it to you, then it’s better to skip it. Instead, opt for a brand that is 100% transparent about its ingredients and practices. Greenwashing has become a real problem in the pet care industry, with brands adding a single organic ingredient into a highly synthetic formula and labelling the product as “natural and organic.” It can be very misleading. You should always look for a full INCI list on the label, and not just a couple of the active ingredients manufacturers disclose.
4. What do other dog owners/groomers say?
One of the best ways to identify a high-quality and effective organic dog conditioner is to turn to the community of dog owners and dog groomers that have already used the product. Have a good look through product reviews to see what other people have to say about the product and whether their experience was positive or negative. Where a brand can make whatever claims they want about the safety and effectiveness of their products, the customer doesn’t lie. And dog owners and groomers support one another and understand how important it is to use safe and effective products on their beloved pets.
Check out our Doglyness Family Facebook Group where we share customer feedback, answer questions and talk about everything discussed here.
Look at what other consumers have to say by checking online reviews.
How to apply organic dog conditioner
The best way to apply organic dog conditioner is by wet brushing the conditioner into the coat during each bathing process. Wet brushing makes the overall grooming process faster and easier, plus it’s very beneficial for the dog’s skin. After rinsing out shampoo, apply to conditioner to your dog’s coat and use a pin brush with extra-fine and rounded pins to brush it through. You can brush either head-to-toe or toe-to-head. But what matters most for the best results is brushing the entire dog’s body consistently until it’s soft and detangled before rising out.
Organic dog conditioner and your pooch
Using an organic dog conditioner is really a no-brainer. It’s the best option for your dog's overall health, well-being and will help reduce your dog’s environmental pawprint. Organic dog conditioners contain natural, nourishing ingredients that are gentle and safe for your dog, soothe skin conditions, avoid harsh chemicals and are also environmentally friendly. We have multiple organic dog conditioners available based on your dog’s special needs. For dogs who need overall coat repair and nourishment, try our Immortelle Rejuvenating Conditioner, and for dogs with sensitive or dry skin, try our Oats Calming Conditioner. For more insights about of organic dog conditioners and how to use them effectively, head over to the Doglyness Family Facebook group to join the conversation and see why everyone loves them so much. Or reach out to us directly with any questions at firstname.lastname@example.org. We are always happy to help.