Does dog shampoo kill lice?

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does dog shampoo kill lice

Human hair and dog hair are different but both can experience lice. You’ll be happy to know that humans can’t catch lice from dogs and vice versa.  So what are the symptoms that indicate your dog may have lice? What can be done to treat it? Does dog shampoo kill lice? 

Dogs typically catch lice from unclean environments such as a kennel, groomers, or the doggy daycare.  Thankfully, it isn’t a huge problem in the US because of cleanliness standards that our pet care providers follow.

Read onto find out if you can use dog shampoo to kill lice.

Dog Lice Shampoo Reviews

What dog shampoo kills lice?

Examples of good dog lice killing shampoos are Nootie Oatmeal and Aloe Dog Shampoo, 4-Legger Certified Organic Dog Shampoo and DakPets Dog Shampoo and Conditioner.

Read the labels and user reviews to know more about the effectiveness of each dog shampoo for lice.

Nootie Oatmeal and Aloe Dog Shampoo Review

does dog shampoo kill lice

Nootie Oatmeal and Aloe Dog Shampoo not only cleans your dog, but also moisturizes their skin. It strengthens hair strands to prevent shredding.  Nootie is a lice dog shampoo that will kill lice on your dog.

The essential oils clean your dog while providing a mild fragrance. It has anti-fungal properties and prevents hair loss. 

Nootie Oatmeal Dog Shampoo can also be used with other pets such as cats and horses. Every drop is worth it—in fact, just one drop will give you a rich lather. 

Read the full review here.


  • Made in USA
  • Formulated with colloidal oatmeal, coconut oil, and ordenone, which work together to relieve dry, sensitive skin, and provide a refreshing feeling
  • Pleasant, soft smell that is not too strong for both the pet owners and pets
  • No parabens, soap, or SLS.
  • Guaranteed safe
  • Nootie Oatmeal Dog Shampoo passes quality and consistency standards for pet care products
  • With the aloe vera gel, to help heal irritated skin
  • With only a few drops of Nootie Oatmeal Dog Shampoo, you can lather it richly onto your pet’s coat and massage it. It is simple to rinse off.
  • It is an easy-to-use dog shampoo and improves your pet’s skin and hair immediately

does dog shampoo kill lice

Certified Organic Dog Shampoo

4-Legger Organic Dog Shampoo Review

does dog shampoo kill lice

4-Legger Certified Organic Dog Shampoo also contains 100% natural ingredients such as lemongrass and aloe that clean and moisturize a dog’s skin and fur. 

All of the ingredients are USDA certified organic and 4-legger is also biodegradable: safe for your pets and the environment.  4-legger is also hypoallergenic, meaning it does not contain common ingredients that cause allergic reactions.  Also, it doesn’t have any sulfates, parabens or detergents.  

This special natural formulation of dog shampoo helps protect pets from skin dryness, allergies, itch, and health issues.  Natural oils in this dog shampoo keep your dogs hair shiny and helps to detangle mats.  It also repels fleas with all natural cedarwood essential oil.

Vets recommend this dog shampoo because it relieves itching and dryness and moisturizes your dogs hair.  Even with few drops, the 4-Legger Certified Organic Dog Shampoo is easy to lather and rinse. It is highly concentrated so just one or two drops will result in a rich lather saving you money in the long run.

BONUS: 4-Legger Certified Organic Dog Shampoo is recommended for dogs of all ages. 

Read our full review here.


  • Formulated with 100% natural ingredients such as lemon grass and aloe
  • All the ingredients are USDA-certified organic
  • Biodegradable: safe for your pets, awesome for your family and the environment
  • No any artificial ingredients (Yay!) which means that it does not have sulfates, parabens, or detergents
  • Contains cedarwood essential oil a natural flea repellent
  • Veterinarians recommend this dog shampoo because it relieves itching and dryness to a dog’s skin and moisturizes dog hair
  • Natural oils proven to keep dog hair shiny and easily detangles hair
  • Highly concentrated, easy to lather and rinse, saving you money in the long run
  • For dogs of all ages


does dog shampoo kill lice

A good dog shampoo such as DakPets contains only natural ingredients that work together to provide relief from itch, moisturize the skin, and cleanse the coat. 

DakPets Dog Shampoo and Conditioner is formulated with coconut oil, aloe vera, cellulose, citrus, and other natural ingredients that are safe for pets and will relieve itching.

It is highly concentrated so even with only a few drops, it results in a rich lather. It easily detangles pet hair and prevents tangles in the future.  Even with the dirtiest coat and extremely tangled hair, DakPets Dog Shampoo and Conditioner takes care of the problems.

One bottle can last for a year as your pet does not need to be washed daily. It could be the best thing that you can do for your dog.  DakPets contains ultra mild veterinary grade ingredients to condition, soothe and replenish your dogs natural moisture.  This formula is so mild that it should not irritate eyes, nose and skin.

DakPets carries a whole line of shampoo and grooming products for all your pets needs.  With over 10,000 5 star reviews on Amazon, you can trust that if you purchase a product from DakPets, you are making a good choice. 

Read our full review here.


  • Gets rid of itch and dry skin fast
  • Does not contain soap, dye, parabens, preservatives, sulfates, or other fillers
  • Contains effective ingredients that work together towards a healthier skin and coat
  • Strengthens hair strands
  • Money back guarantee
  • Great deodorizer
  • Relieves allergies
  • Prevents hair fall
  • Makes your pet coat feel soft
  • Detangles pet hair
  • Smells good
  • Moisturizes dog skin

does dog shampoo kill lice

Does dog shampoo kill lice?

YES!  There are different treatments for dog lice infestations that are easy and effective. Dog shampoos provide the right level of pH for a dog’s skin, relieve itch and irritation, while detangling their coat.

Some dog shampoos available in stores today can kill lice and prevent them from coming back. If you are looking for a dog shampoo that kills lice, search for the active ingredients like lime sulfur, pyrethroid, and pyrethrin listed on the label. 

Some people wonder, if dog shampoo kills human head lice. 

While it might kill the active adult lice on your head, you will still need to use a nit comb and comb every single egg out of your hair, strand by strand, in order to fully eliminate the problem.

Dogs and Lice FAQs

Does dog shampoo kill liceA dog lice infestation is a plague known as canine pediculosis wherein lice feed on the skin of your dog. These parasites eat the dog’s blood, which potentially leads to skin irritation, itch, and anemia. 

If your dog itches constantly, this could cause your dog to lose their hair or develop bacterial skin infections. One type of chewing lice might carry tapeworms, which your dog can get if they swallow an infected louse.

Lice are more common in unsanitary conditions or in areas where there are lots of dogs such as kennels or boarding facilities.  You are more likely to see lice in the cooler months.

Dogs experience uneasiness and might be weakened in time if this condition is left untreated. No one wants their dog to suffer from a lice infestation.

We only want the best for our pooches, which is why we search for an effective treatment for dog lice infestation. Veterinarians frequently tell pet owners that the application of medication is the treatment and not just mere washing.  

So, what are the medications? Does a dog shampoo kill lice?

does dog shampoo kill lice

Lice Facts: Can Dogs Get Lice From Humans?

A louse ( the singular term for lice) is a tiny parasite that settles on the hair and skin. It is species specific, so the lice in human hair are not the same as the lice that live on a dog’s coat.  Thank goodness! 

The dog lice lifecycle is pretty short. 

  • Female lice lay several eggs per day, which they attach right onto your dogs hair
  • They grow from egg to adult in 2-3 weeks
  • Unlike fleas that can live for months away from a host, lice can only survive for 3-7 days if they have no food source

Signs of a dog lice infestation

There are many symptoms that your dog has lice.  At times, you may notice that your dog scratches often or acts uneasy or worried. Itch and irritation are the number-one sign of a dog lice infestation. 

Matted fur in areas that are not typically where a matt would occur are another sign.  When this happens, examine your pet’s fur for any adult louse or eggs.  Look for small brown or black dots, about the size of a pinhead, that will be attached to individual hairs in your dogs coat. 

If you try to remove them from the hair, and the dots will not budge, then those are lice eggs. They are cemented to the hairs until they hatch.  Also, you may see small brown insects roaming around on your pets skin: those are adult lice.

You may also take your dog to a veterinarian for a diagnosis. A sample of skin or fur will be taken and looked at under a microscope for nits and adult lice.

How to Check your Dog for Lice

Get yourself and your dog comfortable and take a look down at the skin where the hair attaches.  If your dog has lice you can see adult lice, which are flat with 6 legs roaming around on your dogs skin. 

Secondly, nits, are attached to individual hair shafts and they are stuck on there with a glue like substance.  They appear like white dots. 

If you see either of those things, your dog may have lice.   Never fear though, dog lice usually only become a problem when the dogs are in unsanitary conditions.

Keeping your dog out of those sorts of situations is key.

Guide to Applying Treatments for Dog Lice

To easily apply a treatment for dog lice, you may want to shave your dog’s coat. This way you can directly apply the treatment to the exposed skin.

It is important to consider that topical treatment should be applied more than once. Dog lice have a long life cycle.  The adult female lice have a 4-week lifespan and produce eggs every day. The eggs hatch in 1 to 2 weeks, then begin feasting on your pet, until they eventually become full-grown adults that lay eggs.

This is why it is more effective if you apply dog shampoos and other treatments once per day.   If you can comb your dogs fur, it is advised to do so everyday with a special lice comb to remove any eggs that may be latched onto the hairs.

You should also treat your dog’s beddings, toys, grooming tools, and other objects that may have been infected with dog lice.  Heat kills lice, just make sure that you dry everything on your dryers high setting for at least 20 minutes. 

Also, you can put your dogs toys and brushes in a plastic bag in the freezer for 24 hours to make sure you’ve killed every last louse and nit (lice eggs).  Refrain from boarding your dog or taking them to a grooming facility as lice may also originate from these places.

Can you Wash a Dog with Lice Shampoo?

You can only wash you dog with a shampoo made for dogs.  Do not use a human lice treatment shampoo on your pooch, you could harm them.  Instead choose from one of the 3 amazing brands of dog lice killing shampoo above.

Why do dogs have lice infestations?

Lice get onto a dog’s hair and skin in different ways. They can come from another pet with whom your dog had direct contact. They may also come from objects that are infected with lice.

Lice can come from parks, grooming facilities, and dog shelters. If your dog shares beddings, furniture, or any objects with another pet, your dog has an increased tendency for lice infestation.

One misconception about dog lice is that they also may come from humans. Lice are parasites that are specific to species. Human lice can’t live on dogs, and dog lice can’t live on humans.


You might well be worried if you find lice in your dog’s fur. A lice infestation is common to dogs, but it is easily treated with dog shampoos and other medications.

It is important to get your dog treated to ensure their welfare and give them the comfortable life you want for them.  If your dog doesn’t have lice, check out our post on the top 10 best selling dog shampoo brands below!