Let's Talk

Splash Feet First into Dog Grooming!

Throughout my time as a groomer, I have met an interesting array of people wanting to become dog groomers.  However, I never recommend diving head first into grooming, but wading in the stream of bathing.  Water metaphors, gotta love them.  When I first worked in a corporate environment dealing with the grooming aspect, I was not allowed to go fully into grooming.  I had to work my way up to it as a bather first, learning the basic in and outs of the profession.  I was working as a bather for over a year before being offered to go to grooming school, a four-week class teaching the basics of dog grooming.

Now, I had people among me that went to grooming school sooner than I did, and bathed a shorter period than me.  I was most likely not ready, for I was really young at the time, but I will say having been just a bather, it prepared me more for what lied ahead.  I was able to perfect my speed and efficiency for bathing, drying, trimming nails, doing sanitary trims, and foot trims.

Should everyone wait a year before they learn the ins and outs of grooming?  Not necessarily, but I will say this.  I have dealt with people who only worked a bathing position for around three months before going to a type of grooming school, and not being able to stick it out.  Most who attempt this career path fail due to the physical and emotional demands, and not realizing all that it takes to become a groomer.  Groomers do not play with dogs all day, unfortunately.

However, those who stuck with bathing for over six months had much more success in dog grooming and groomed longer than two years.  Six months is the least amount of time that I recommend just bathing dogs, before heading into dog grooming.  The absolute basics are learned throughout that time, tough skin is formed, usually, and as I have stated previously, a better grasp and understanding of what lies ahead.

Last words of wisdom before I go, when you are a bather, you are going to get the short end of the stick.  Unfortunately, that is how it goes.  Dealing with a multitude of dogs to bathe, walk-in nail trims, answering phone calls, bathing groomer dogs, the list is endless.  Most groomers had to go through these tribulations, but it made them stronger, faster, and better at what they do.  So if you are truly passionate about this profession, and feel it is the right fit for you, be prepared.  The road is long and hard but as the saying goes, anything worth having is worth bathing for, or something along those lines.

Hopefully, this gave a little more insight, as well as something to think about before splashing into the dog grooming world.  Is there anything you would like me to delve into deeper with, or another topic you would like me to discuss?  Is there anything I missed?  Please let me know in the comment sections down below!  I would love to hear your thoughts, suggestions, comments, questions, and concerns!  Till next time!

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Basic Information, Let's Talk

Grooming is So EXPENSIVE!

“I brush my dog everyday,” is probably the number one thing groomers hear the most, another is “What do you mean you don’t have time today to groom my dog?!”  The other most popular thing?  “You are more expensive then my hairdresser!”  Really, it gets old.  So let me break a few things down for you.

Grooming can be expensive, yes, however, your pet, cats included on this, have a lot more things done then just your normal “hair cut” appointment.  Most facilities charge by breed, and additional charges may follow depending on the type of haircut and difficulty of the pet.  I have researched that some grooming facilities charge by weight and size, however this breakdown is universal.

First off, when your hairdresser washes your hair, it is the hair on top of your head, that’s it.  Groomers wash an entire dogs body; face to the tip of the tail.  That includes their private areas, which usually has residue stuck, and their feet.  Next, anal glands are usually included with the service, although upon request for most facilities.  That means we are squeezing the pets rectum area, searching for two little sacs that fill up with a viscous, brown liquid that smells of rotting fish or eggs.  Pleasant, huh?

Now comes the drying time!  Some dogs tend to tolerate this, however dogs ears are more sensitive than humans, meaning the loud noise does scare a few dogs, so we have to let them air dry.  That is additional time added on to the service, because groomers do not want to stress out the pet.  After the pet is fully dry, we brush them out, then comes the haircut!

What’s included in a haircut you might ask?  Well, basic trims include the sanitary and feet.  That means we are taking clippers to trim the hair on the dogs potty areas, where they urinate and were they poop.  I am pretty sure a hair stylist is not going to shave your pubic region or your anal opening during your hair appointment.  Next we shave out the hair in the pads, and trim up the feet to get rid of the grinchy toes.

Then, if it is an all over type of haircut, we trim in front of the eyes, trim up the face, trim ears, take clippers or scissors all over the body, including the legs, belly, tail, butt, etc.  I didn’t even mention the nails yet!  Nail trimming is usually included in this service!  A pedicure for your pet is included!  Ear plucking and ear cleaning tend to also be included with this service.

So let’s go over this one more time, a bath, anal gland expression, blow dry, brush out, haircut, nail trim, and ear cleaning.  Let me break this down in human costs, and I am just going to reference the few places that I have been to.

Hair wash, blow dry, and cut just for the hair on my head runs me about $45.  Nails, well a pedicure is around $20, and a manicure is around $20 for me.  A Brazilian wax (basically a sanitary trim for pets) is around $30, legs waxed about $20, arms I believe was about $15.  Adding all of that together, you are looking at around $150.  So, if your pets haircut runs around $55 if it is a small dog, you are getting one hell of a deal.  Heck, I groom large dogs for no more than $100.

Here’s another tidbit of information to consider.  Groomer’s get bit at, scratched up, peed on, pooped on, hair sticks to everywhere, and we constantly smell like wet dog.  On top of that, dogs are not statues.  They are living, moving, breathing creatures who constantly move, and don’t understand that they need to hold perfectly still.  We have the stress of dealing with not trying to nick a pet, on top of everything else.

Also, I am going to make something else clear.  When groomers hear “You are more expensive than my hairdresser,” or something along those lines, what we hear is that you do not value what we do for your pet, and you are insulting our work.  That we are not worth that type of money, which honestly, most of the time you are being undercharged for what groomers do.  Most groomers absolutely love what they do, and they take pride in their work.  Those comments irritate us, and again, insult us.  I am pretty sure you would not like someone coming to your line of work, saying they could get the same service cheaper.  Hopefully this was insightful and informative, and let me know what you think in the comment section below!  If you are a groomer, did I hit the nail on the head with this, did I miss a few things?  Let me know!  Also, any suggestions for future posts, or any questions or comments, put them in the comment section down below!  Till next time!

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Review

Review: earthbath Hypo-Allergenic Shampoo

It’s that time again!  Review time!  Today is all about the earthbath Hypo-Allergenic shampoo.  As always, I will be going over the ingredient deck list, the pros and cons, and where to buy.  Like my previous shampoo (and conditioner) reviews, I am going to be referencing my bottle that I purchased for this review.  earthbath is designed to be natural, non-toxic, and environment-friendly.  Quoting directly from my bottle, “This product contains no: DEA, parabens, phosphates, synthetic dyes, or perfumes… The sudsy runoff is completely safe and will not harm kids, lawns, or other living things.”  earthbath is also a cruelty-free brand, which believe it or not is hard to find in pet products, so YAY!  One more side note, I purchased this product myself, with my own money.  No one is paying me to give this review, this is 100% my own opinion. 🙂

Now, let’s talk ingredients.  This so far is the shortest ingredient deck list I have seen on a product, and I could not be more thrilled!  Again, using the bottle that I purchased we have purified water, extra-mild renewable coconut-based cleansers, aloe vera, xanthan gum, and olive oil squalene as a preservative.  That’s it.  Nothing else.  For those wondering xanthan gum is a thickening agent and is also a stabilizer to help prevent ingredients from separating (Google).

Moving on to the product itself, there is no fragrance, in my opinion, it literally smells like nothing.  It is mostly clear, with a slight, slight yellow tint, and is on the thicker side for consistency.  The directions on the bottle explain to shake well to mix the natural ingredients together before using, and once spread onto the coat, it does not run off easily, giving plenty of time to lather the product into the coat.  It suds up nicely, and washes the coat well.  I have no issues rinsing the product and do not feel any residual product on the coat.  I do notice, however, that after drying, the coat feels soft and plush, but again, I don’t feel any residue or greasiness.  Also, with this shampoo, I feel I don’t have to use a conditioner.  Having used quite a few hypo-allergenic shampoos, none of them left the coat feeling super soft after drying.  One last thing to mention is the coat smells clean, but not fragranced, after the bath.  My dogs do not have any odor, just clean.

Overall, I do not have any cons for this product.  I tried to be as critical as possible, but I cannot give a negative remark for this product.  It cleans beautifully, lathers perfectly, has a short and good ingredient deck list, is biodegradable (forgot to mention that earlier), and is cruelty-free.  My most sensitive dogs have not had any negative reactions to this shampoo, and I could not be more pleased.  I have yet to try other shampoos from this brand, but they are for sure on my list!  This has to be one of my favorite shampoos that I have tried not only for my own dogs but for clients dogs as well.  What are some of your favorite dog shampoos?  What do you think of earthbath, and have you tried this shampoo?  Let me know in the comment section down below!  Also, any questions, comments, or concerns, feel free to leave them as well!  I would love to hear from you!  Till next time!  PS. I’m trying to shorten my posts, but let me know if you like the long posts, or try to keep them on the shorter side like this one!

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Various locations to purchase, none of the following links are affiliate links.  And these are just base prices, not including shipping and handling.

Amazon.com

Chewy.com

Petco

Pet Edge

PetSmart

Ryan’s Pet Supplies

Review

Review: Lambert Kay Fresh ‘N Clean Oatmeal ‘N Baking Soda Conditioner

freshncleanoatmealconditioner001-0908After doing the review on the shampoo of this line, I only saw it fitting to follow up with a review on the conditioner.  Just like my previous reviews, we are going to discuss the pros and cons, the ingredient deck list, some of the claims, as well as the consistency and application of this product.  To make this perfectly clear, this product was not sent to me, I purchased this product with my own money, and have been using this product for years.  Lambert Kay products are made in the USA but they are not a cruelty free brand.

Now, first thing I will go over is the ingredient deck list.  I know this may be tedious or unnecessary for some, and if that is the case for you, please feel free to skip ahead.  I have had some of my pet parents ask about the ingredients in certain dog shampoos and conditioners that I use, so I feel including and going over the ingredient deck list is a necessary step.  First up with have purified water, followed by hydroxyethylcellulose, a thickening agent.  It is a plant-derived ingredient used in many beauty products, cleaning products, and household items, and raise no flag of concern (Wikipedia).  A conditioning agent of Cocamidopropyl PG is next, which is a coconut derived ingredient.  Most of the times, when you see an ingredient starting with coca, it usually means that it is derived from coconuts.  There have been many mixed reviews on the use of coconut derived ingredients in products.  The most information I found on this ingredient is that it could be a very mild skin irritant, but nothing more serious than that.  Citric Acid, a natural pH adjuster, then a humectant which is glycerine follows the conditioning agent.  A humectant, just in case you were wondering, is used to help preserve moisture.  Fragrance is the next ingredient down on the list, and I hate when companies do this.  From my research, when a company just uses “Fragrance” as an ingredient, there are usually multiple ingredients used, but not required to list.  So you are not going to be aware what is used to make the fragrance.  Next we have oat extract as an anti-irritant, sodium bicarbonate (aka baking soda) as a deodorizer, and soothing agents such as Vitamin E and Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice.  The last three ingredients include coloring agents, a coat strengthener of hydrolyzed wheat protein, and a preservative.  As I have stated in the shampoo review of this product, I do not like the fact that the preservative isn’t listed, as it could be a form of formaldehyde, but being the last ingredient on the deck list it means it has the least amount in the product.  Overall, I have no huge concerns over this product, and am not weary of using it on my girls or my clients dogs.

Now lets go on to some of the claims of this product.  Reading and quoting directly from the bottle I have, this conditioner contains natural colloidal oatmeal (clearly) for dogs with sensitive, itchy, or irritated skin, it says it controls coat and skin odors naturally with baking soda, conditions coats and helps remove mats and tangles, and has a scent that lasts up to 2 weeks.  The directions of use are pretty simple, after shampooing and rinsing your dog, you apply conditioner along the dog’s back, work the conditioner into the coat, adding more if needed, and then rinse thoroughly.  Since I have the gallon size of this product, I would need to dilute mine, following the directions on the back, before applying to my dog.  As in the claims, it can be used as a detangler, applying the conditioner at full strength to the mat or tangle, working in briskly with fingers, then combing through.

Moving on to the consistency, scent, etc, it has very much the same scent as the shampoo, a strong clean laundry fragrance, however it is slightly sweeter..  It reminds my almost of yogurt, as odd as that sounds.  Coloring is exactly the same as the shampoo, a milky, almost cream color, and opaque.  The consistency is much thicker, having more sustenance, but still easy to work with.  Even if the product is not diluted, I have no issues spreading this along my dog, and easily working it into the coat.  After rinsing the coat, I don’t feel any residue, then after drying the coat feels soft without feeling heavy.  I’m able to work through a dry coat without issue for brushing, and the coat smells of clean, fresh laundry.  As with the shampoo, I have noticed the scent lasting around 3 days, and then my dogs not smelling of anything, but not smelling dirty or feeling dirty.  Again, my dogs are indoor dogs, only going outside to go potty.

In the end, I would recommend this product, but like with the shampoo, I would not recommend this conditioner if you are highly sensitive to fragrance, because it is immensely strong.  I also would not recommend this shampoo on dogs with extremely sensitive skin, even though the claims say it is suited for them, simply for the fact of the fragrance, because it will cause skin irritation.  However, dogs that are itchy, but not sensitive would do great with this shampoo!  Lillith, my older girl, has more sensitive skin, but not to the extreme, and this shampoo and conditioner helps her not be so itchy, and her coat comes out super soft and shiny.

So like with any product, do your own research, and come to your own conclusions.  If this conditioner seems up your alley, I would recommend going into a store that carries it, smelling it there, and purchasing it if you are still interested.  If you go home and try it, it is a bit easier to return than having to deal with the online hassle of returns if it ends up not working out.  Researching multiple sites, some of which I will have linked down below on where you may purchase this item, this product has over 4.5 out of 5 stars, so I am not the only one who feels this is a great product.

Ryan’s Pet Supplies

PetEdge

Chewy.com

PetCo

Amazon

Hopefully this review was helpful, maybe you learned something new or found a new product to try.  If you have any questions, comments, or concerns feel free to leave them in the comment section down below.  Have a shampoo or conditioner that you swear by, let me know!  I love finding new products to try out!  Also, please leave any suggestions on what posts you would like to see, or if there are any products you would like me to try out and review, like I said, I always love finding new products.  Till next time!

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Let's Talk

Over-bathing

Zues0802Over-bathing is a topic that I unfortunately deal with frequently.  New pet parents especially, but I have had pet parents who have had their pets for years, and this problem still arises.  The argument I hear is that their dog stinks, they get too dirty, they like their pet super fluffy, or they just don’t know that they are causing more harm than good for their pet.  Now, there are some pets that need to get bathed frequently because they are prescribed a shampoo from their veterinarian with specific instructions to bathe frequently.  This post is not about that.

The most you should be bathing your pet is once a month, and no more.  Again, unless instructed by your vet otherwise.  When you over-bathe your pet, you are stripping all of the natural oils and bacteria from their skin, which can cause dry skin or skin irritation in the form of hot spots.  They tend to itch more, and another adverse affect of over-bathing is it can get to a point where their body is overproducing oils, because their skins balance is out of wack.  This causes them to have a greasy coat and irritated skin, along with a distinct odor, which then it becomes necessary to bathe them more frequently with a vet recommended shampoo.  Over-bathing takes away the pets natural barrier and defense against skin conditions and natural elements.

I will say this, there are some breed books that discuss show grooming, for example the Saluki, and they instruct to bathe the Saluki every couple of days, to once a week.  I have not researched further as to why that is needed and what the logic behind that is, but this post is going for more of the family pet, who is not involved in show grooming.

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Paw Choice Waterless Shampoo Click Here to go to Amazon page to purchase. Image downloaded from the Amazon page.

Now, some recommendations I have are use dog wipes in between if your pet gets dirty, or a bit stinky.  Rubbing them down with the dog wipe, then brushing out their coat, helps get rid of dirt.  Also, giving your dog a quick spritz of a doggy cologne helps alleviate the odor.  There are a wide range of scents available on the market, from bakery good scents to floral and fruity.  Most major pet chains and smaller pet shops carry these, as well as online shops such as Amazon.  If you have a dog who is extremely sensitive to shampoos and fragrances, just look for a hypo-allergenic dog wipe.  Waterless shampoos can also be a great alternative, especially with dogs who might have accidents stick to their rear end.  I do not recommend using anything made for a human to be used on dogs, including baby products.  Dogs have a different pH balance than humans, and you can seriously cause damage to a dogs skin.

Well, I hope that was a little food for thought.  Any questions, comments, or concerns, feel free to leave them in the comment section down below.  Till next time!

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Review

Review: Lambert Kay Fresh ‘n Clean Oatmeal ‘n Baking Soda Shampoo

freshncleanoatmealshampoo001-0901The Lambert Kay Fresh ‘n Clean Oatmeal ‘n Baking Soda Shampoo is a shampoo that I have been using for YEARS, and have a strong loyalty to.  We are going to go over some of the pros and cons of this product, the ingredient deck list, some of the claims of this product, as well as the price and where to purchase this product.  Also, from my research Lambert Kay is NOT a cruelty-free brand.  Meaning, they either test their ingredients or the final products on animals.  Also, from 6 different sites, the ratings of this product was over 4.5 stars out of 5.

Referencing my bottle, which is the Gallon Professional Size, it claims that this formula “combines the soothing aid of natural colloidal oatmeal, the deodorizing power of baking soda, and the hydrating benefits of Vitamin E and Aloe for dogs with sensitive, itchy, or irritated skin.  Wheat protein strengthens, repairs, and protects the coat.”  Basically, it is great for dogs with dry and itchy coats.  It also claims that the Tropical Breeze Scent lasts up to 2 weeks.  Now, for me, the shampoo does not have a “Tropical Breeze Scent.”  It reminds me more of a fresh laundry scent, and other people that I have spoke to about this product agree.

Now let’s go over the ingredient deck list.  On the bottle it lists the ingredients as purified water as the first ingredient.  Next we have Natural Derived Cleansing Agents, which include Sodium Lauryl Sulfate, Sodium Lauryl Ether Sulfate, Cocamide MEA, and Cocamidopropyl Betaine.  Now if you read last weeks First Impressions post, which I will like here if you have not, we have already discussed both Cocamide MEA and Cocamidopropyl Betaine.  Both of those ingredients are derived from Coconut Oil, and stir up quite a bit of controversy.  Without having to repeat what I stated in my First Impressions post, there has been evidence linking these ingredients to cancer during animal testing, you can read more about that here. “Sodium laureth sulfate, an accepted contraction of sodium lauryl ether sulfate, is an anionic detergent and surfactant found in many personal care products. SLES is an inexpensive and very effective foaming agent,” (Wikipedia).  It has been deemed safe by the United States as well as Australia, and from my reading and understanding, can be a mild skin irritant.  Following that we have a thickening agent of Sodium Chloride, aka salt.  Next is fragrance.  Yep, just fragrance.  From multiple different sites, when a product just have “fragrance” listed on the bottom, it is usually a compound of many ingredients, and they do not have to specify what ingredients they used to make the fragrance.  Oatmeal Extract is used as an anti-irritant, and then Sodium Bicarbonate, or Baking Soda, is used as a deodorizer.  Soothing agents such as Vitamin E and Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice follow, then Coloring Agents, Emulsifier, Natural pH Adjuster of Citric Acid, Coat Strengthener of Hydrolyzed Wheat Protein, and lastly Preservative.  A slight cause of concern is the preservative ingredient.  Some preservatives contain a form of formaldehyde, which is very common in not only dog shampoos but human shampoos as well.  Again, with everything, do your own research and form your own conclusion on whether or not you would use this shampoo on your own pet or clients pets.

Now onto my thoughts.  As stated previously, the smell reminds me more of a fresh laundry scent rather than a tropical breeze scent, and it is potent.  If you or your dog is sensitive to strong fragrances, I would not recommend this product.  However, like the claims state, the scent lingers, helping your dog smell fresher, longer.  Now, I don’t agree up to 2 weeks, but my girls smell fresh for about 3 to 4 days after their bath.  The shampoo is opaque in color, and more of a runny formula, more viscous, but not watery.  It still has some thickness to the product, but is easy to work into the coat without dissipating.  Once on a wet coat, it lathers and foams beautifully, being able to work over the entire coat with ease.  Rinsing off the product, I have found no issues of residual product, the coat feels squeaky clean, but not greasy or heavy.  After drying, the scent is not as potent as the product in the bottle, but still strong.  Using just the shampoo, the coat feels clean, smells great, and soft.  The heavy fragrance to this product is really only my main cause for concern, or weariness for my dogs.  I have been able to use this shampoo on dogs with dry, itchy skin with no skin reactions or irritations, but I would not feel comfortable using this shampoo on dogs with sensitive skin.  Overall, I thoroughly enjoy this product, and have continually purchased this product throughout the years, and would recommend this product as long as you and your pet are fine with strong fragrances, and your pet does not have sensitive skin.  This shampoo is used at the grooming facility I work at, and it is a shampoo I need to order in large quantities and often, so hopefully that all says something about the product.

Lastly, we are going to go over the price points and locations to purchase.  Now, living up here in Seattle, I have been able to find it in a pet shop called Pet Pros for around $11, and I have also seen it in PetCo.  If you need to buy a large quantity of it, say you work at a grooming facility of some sorts, I would stick with more of a wholesaler type of shop such as Ryan’s or PetEdge.  I found some gallon sizes offered on Amazon, and I would NOT recommend purchasing those sizes from there.  They ranged around $50-$60 the last time I checked, when you can get a gallon around $36 on PetEdge and Ryans.

Ryan’s Pet Supplies

PetEdge

Chewy.com

PetCo

Amazon

I will mention, that if you are concerned about the fragrance, I would find a pet shop that carries the product in store in order to smell it.  If you end up liking the fragrance, purchase the product, and if it ends up not working out, it is easier to return the product.  Well, I hope this review was insightful and informative.  Any questions, comments, or concerns, feel free to leave them in the comment section down below.  Till next time!

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First Impression

First Impression: ikaria Comfort Pet Shampoo

ikariaimpression0825-001This is an exciting day for me, because today I am going to do a first impression on a new shampoo.  Every time I have done a large order through Pet Edge, they have graciously sent out new products to try.  Well, today I am going to try out one of those products.  It is the ikaria Pet Shampoo in the Comfort formula.  Before we go into the impression, I will talk about some of the claims that are on the bottle, go over the ingredient deck list to see if there is any cause for concerns, and talk about the overall rating of this product by other users.  Also, one other side note, the I in ikaria is not capitalized for a reason, that is exactly how it appears on their labels and products.

Looking up this product, I was able to locate it on Pet Edge, Amazon, Walmart, and Jet.com.  Prices range from $8.99 to $16.99 for the 16 ounce bottle.  Pet Edge was the least expensive, while Amazon was the most expensive.  Looking at the ratings, this product ranged from 4 to 4.5 stars out of 5 from consumers.

Like stated in the title, I have the Comfort version of this shampoo, which has a sandalwood, vanilla, and basmati water scent, and this formula claims to calm dry, itchy skin as well as help prevent hot spots.  Going off of the back of the bottle, the purpose of the ikaria line is using essential oils and plants in the product, and use salon-quality and human-grade ingredients.  It claims to be safe for dogs, cats, puppies, and kittens over 8 weeks old, and contains gentle coconut cleansing and conditioning agents, oatmeal and silk proteins, aloe, Vitamin E, and Pro Vitamin B5.  It can be diluted for use as much as 6:1, but can be used straight.

Now, I am going to go over the ingredient deck list.  Now usually with any ingredient deck list, they are listed in order from the amount of each ingredient contained in the product.  The first ingredient is water, the next are some surfactants, both anionic and amphoteric. “Surfactants are compounds that lower the surface tension (or interfacial tension) between two liquids or between a liquid and a solid. Surfactants may act as detergents, wetting agents, emulsifiers, foaming agents, and dispersants,” (Wikipedia).  On the bottle, the surfactants are said to be gentle coconut derived cleansing agents.  Next we have cocamidopropyl betaine and cocamide DEA, both of which are derived from coconut oil.  Here is where this can be a cause of concern for some.  “California listed cocamide DEA in June 2012 as a chemical known to cause cancer based on the assessment by The International Agency for Research on Cancer, which evaluated skin exposure tests on animals,” (CEH.org).  On both of these ingredients, Dogs Naturally Magazine claimed that these ingredients are dangerous in dog shampoos, 20 Ingredient’s You Don’t Want In Your Dogs Shampoo and 3 Dangerous Ingredient Groups In Your Dog’s Shampoo.  However, researching the FDA, or the Food and Drug Administration site, they see no cause for concern with these substances in products.  From what I have read and understand about these substances, is that they can be mild, skin irritating substances.  Other articles I have found on this subject are from Decoded Science and EGW’s Skin Deep Cosmetics Database. The purpose of these substances are for foaming and thickening in this product.  Next down on the list is glycol stearate, a conditioning agent/emollient, then oatmeal protein, silk protein, and aloe barbadensis, used for soothing, comforting, and moisturizing the skin.  Panthenol follows, which is a provitamin of B5, and is used for moisturizing and lubricating (EGW).  Then we have Vitamin E, Sandalwood with Vanilla & Basmati Rice essences, citric acid, DMDM Hydantoin, which is a preservative, and FD&C Yellow #5, which help gives it the yellow coloring.  Now, with DMDM Hydantoin it is an antimicrobial formaldehyde, but the purpose of this substance is to help prevent mold and bacteria from growing in the product, helping the product have a longer shelf-life, and with the ingredient being the second to last substance in the product, it doesn’t raise any cause for concern for me.  So after going through the ingredient deck list, the only cause of concern I have is dealing with the cocamidopropyl betaine and the cocamide DEA.  With anything, do your own research and come to your own conclusions.  I do know those substances to be in a wide range of products, not only for animals but as well as humans, and I have not had an issue, nor any of my dogs, so I feel comfortable using this product.  I do intend to find 100% natural and organic shampoos and conditioners to research and review in the future.

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Here is the ikaria shampoo on Xandria, and as you can see it suds up very nicely.

Alright, now that we got the base of the product information out of the way, let’s talk about this shampoo!  When smelling the shampoo, it has a light, clean scent.  Sandalwood and vanilla is detectable, but not overpowering.  It is not a super viscous product, it is slightly runny, but not so thin such as water.  The product is not very opaque, it has a light yellow tint to it, and almost a glossy, pearlescent appearance.  For today, I am trying this product out on a Bichon Frise, who has a nice dense coat.  When applying the shampoo to the coat, I used a small palm size amount, and noticed it spread and lathered easily.  It produced a nice suds that I was able to work throughout the body, without having to pour out additional product.  The shampoo rinsed easily and I did not feel there was any residue left on my dog.  I did not add additional products today to the coat, such as my normal conditioner and leave-in conditioner I use, for I wanted to see how the product would perform on its own.  After towel drying my dog, I proceeded to velocity dry his coat.  Dry time was about the same, I did not notice any lengthened or shortened amount of dry time.  After brushing out the coat, I noticed that the coat was nice and soft, and it was easy to brush out.  The residual scent on my dog is not overpowering, it is light and clean, but barely there.

Overall, first impression is that I enjoyed using this shampoo.  I have a few pet parents that do not like overpowering scents, but still want their dog to smell good, and I feel this would fit the bill.  Obviously since this is not a full review, I cannot determine whether or not this shampoo helps prevent hot spots, or if it soothes itchy skin.  The next time the Bichon comes in, I am going to take a look at his skin and coat, and check to see if there has been any change, I am also going to give it a try on Lillith, my own dog, because she is famous for getting hot spots and having really itchy, dry skin.  So, look for a full review in the future on this product to know my final thoughts.

Also, disclaimer, because it being 2017, we need a disclaimer for everything.  This product was sent to me as a sample from a larger order that I purchased from Pet Edge.  I did not know they were going to send me this product, nor did Pet Edge or ikaria pay me or ask me to do this first impressions.  This is all my own choosing and doing.  I give my honest opinion no matter what, because frankly I don’t give a damn what other people want me to do or say.  Another side note, the pet parent of the Bichon Frise knew I was going to try a new shampoo on her dog.  I asked her permission to try out this shampoo.  She is excited and hopes this shampoo works out.  Any questions, comments, or concerns, please feel free to leave them in the comment section down below.  Till next time.

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