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Can I Use Human Shampoo on Cats?

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Have you ever thought of applying human shampoo to cats?

Well, when most of us run out of pet shampoo we think that we can apply our shampoo on them as the main purpose is to clean the skin right!

But, no, not in the case of cats!

So, it is important to know can I use human shampoo on my cat! In this blog I have explained can I use human shampoo on my cat, and what is the difference between human and cat shampoo?

The pH level of cat skin differs from that of people; nonetheless, what do you want to know more about? Then take a look at this article!

Use Human Shampoo on Cats

Can I Use Regular Shampoo on My Cat?

If you ask me can I use human shampoo on my cat. The straight forward answer is clear No! Human shampoo are customized according to human skin needs. Furthermore, the quality of our scalp differs significantly from that of cats. Felines are sensitive and their Ph tolerance level is different from us.

1. It Dries Out the Cat’s Skin

The skin makeup of humans and cats is vastly different. We have acidic skin types and using our shampoo on them will make no sense thus, it will also cause dryness. Furthermore, dryness will lead to skin irritation.

2. Can Lead to Long-term Skin Issues

Using human shampoo on cats can turn into long-lasting skin problems. This can also lead to a low immunity system.

Can Lead to Long term Skin Issue

Long-lasting skin problems will emerge from skin infections and the bacteria present in the sore pores will make their body weak.

Before you choose a shampoo for a cat make sure to see whether it matches the PH level of the cat’s saliva or not. Verify the ingredients used in it. And, is it marked safe for felines or not.

3. Hair Loss

The leading reason why not to use human shampoo on a cat is that people’s skin is more acidic in nature than cats. The body of the cat does not produce sebum (skin oil) this helps to protect the skin and reduce dryness.

Humans’ skin produces enough sebum which can make hair look oily if not washed on time. And, human shampoo is customized for removing excess oil. Cat skin creates a very small amount of sebum which can last several months.

And, when you bathe your cat with your shampoo it can cause hair loss along with dandruff.

4. Scratching Problem

As discussed earlier using human shampoo on cat cause skin irritation and skin infections among which one more skin problem is the scratching issue.

 Scratching Problem

Shampoo made for humans are toxic for cats, and it can lead to scratching issue if you clean them with that due to the roughness and chemical compound. In the adverse condition, it can also lead to watery eyes, sneezing problems, and redness.

5. Vomiting Issue

If a cat ingests human shampoo she can become lethargic and may feel nausea. The chemical used in our shampoo is harmful to cats and when they lick their hair for grooming they can eat human shampoo which is dangerous for them. She will feel unusual as a result, she will end up throwing food out.

Thus, prolonged use of cat shampoo on cats would be a problematic affair! So, now you know well can you use regular shampoo on cats or not.

The Best Cat Shampoo

When I ask my vet, can I use human shampoo on my cat he suggested not to do that! As it is painful to her skin. Then he recommended a few budget-friendly and healthy cat shampoos.

The Best Cat Shampoo

If you also want to know then do read below!

Burt’s Bees Hypoallergenic Cat Shampoo

As you know using human shampoo on cats can make their skin irritated. Therefore, you can use Burt’s Bees shampoo if your cat is hypoallergic. It is customized with the goodness of shea butter and honey that offer extra moisture.

Burt's Bees Hypoallergenic Cat Shampoo


You can apply this to kittens too. It is made according to the pH level of the cat’s skin. Includes zero colors, no harmful substance, and it is odor-free.

Vet’s Best Waterless Cat Bathing Shampoo

Vet’s Best Waterless Cat Bathing cat shampoo is filled with neem oil, oatmeal delight, and green and refreshing aloe vera.

Vet's Best Waterless Cat Bathing Shampoo


Unlike human shampoos, this shampoo will not dry out your cat’s skin. It has enough moisture levels. It conditions the cat’s fur and helps to make its coat quality better.

You can definitely go for this shampoo as it is safe and effective contain a soothing smell and has no requirement for rinse.

What Is the Difference Between Cat Shampoo and Human Shampoo?

The major difference between cat and human shampoo is that both have distinct pH levels. Humans’ scalp PH level is more acidic in nature than that of cats.

What Is the Difference Between Cat Shampoo and Human Shampoo

The shampoo for humans comprises artificial fragrances and harsh chemicals which can be toxic for cats. It also includes natural essential oil which cats can’t break thus it will create problems for them.

Due to the difference in PH level in the human shampoo, it can cause itchiness and dryness to the cat’s skin. You may think your cat fur is clean, but you are wrong here. It will lead to long-term consequences and health issues.

Shampoo customized for cats is milder than that of humans. They don’t include strong chemical composition. Some human shampoos include parabens and dyes which are extremely poisonous to your cat’s health.

The skin composition of cats is obviously different from humans, and they are made according to their body needs and oil control level. So, if you wonder can I use human shampoo on cats you know very well why you can’t!


Why do pets require certain shampoo?

Pets have different skin types, and they need different hair treatments than humans. Because human skin is more acidic than that of pets, pet shampoo is milder than human shampoo.

Humans are mammals, and they go through precipitation whereas cat breeds and other pets don’t as they don’t have sweat glands. Ingredients used in cat shampoo are way different from humans.

Washing a pet with human products can encourage dryness, irritation, and long-term skin problem.

Can cats be killed by human shampoo?

No, if you wash your cat with human shampoo it won’t kill her, although she will face skin problems and health issues if the concentration of human shampoo applied is higher, and it is prolonged for a long time period.

No one should apply human shampoo on felines. It is harmful to them and may cause dandruff, lower immunity problems, and skin irritation.

Can I use human shampoo on my cat?

No, you must not wash your cat with human shampoo. The after-effects are dangerous. If you clean her with your shampoo you will hurt her skin it can make her coat dry, itchy, and cause long-term skin-related problems.

In severe cases, it can lead to sneezing issues, watery eyes, and vomiting problems. And, she will scratch her fur all day long. Thus, human shampoo for cats is not safe.

Well, That’s a Wrap

Many pet owners think they can use human shampoo on cats! There are several reasons why you should not try human shampoo on your feline buddy.

The very first reason is because of the Ph tolerance. Cat shampoo is gentler than human. Human shampoo is acidic and includes colorant, fragrance, and strong chemicals that can cause skin problems in cats. In serious cases, it can also lead to sneezing problems and redness.

There are also many reasons why you must avoid using human shampoo on cats and for that, you have to read the above.


  1. Tips for How to Bathe Your Cat or Kitten – PetWebMD
  2. The ultimate guide to grooming your cat – RSPCA
  3. How to Give a Stress-Free Cat Bath – Michelson Found Animals

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