How to Make Dry Pet Shampoo

Wait until your pet is dry before using dry shampoo.

Wait until your pet is dry before using dry shampoo.

Dogs and cats get dirty, but traditional wet shampoos can strip your pet’s skin of its natural moisture. Dry shampoo is a powdery mixture that absorbs odor-causing oils, odors and impurities from fur. Regular dry baths keep your pet smelling fresh between those necessary soapy baths each month.

Take your pet outside, or someplace where clouds of dry shampoo won’t get on the furniture or carpet. Brush your pet thoroughly to remove any tangles or grit from her fur. Use scissors to remove any sections of matted fur before applying the dry shampoo.

Combine the cornstarch and baking soda in a bowl and secure the lid. Gently shake the covered bowl to mix the items together. Remove the lid and empty the dry mixture into the flour sifter. Sifting the ingredients removes any solid clumps before you apply it to your pet’s fur.

Sift the baking soda and cornstarch over his fur. Massage the mixture into his coat with your fingers while sifting. This allows the dry shampoo to reach the odor-causing oils and dirt stuck beneath the surface.

Let the dry shampoo sit on his coat for 10 to 15 minutes after you’ve completely worked the mixture into his fur. This gives the naturally absorbent ingredients time to soak up all the foul-smelling substances. Speak gently to your pet throughout this process and stroke his back or head to keep him calm.

Remove the remaining dry shampoo by firmly brushing his entire coat with a bristle brush. As a reward, give your dog a treat once you’re finished.

Items you will need

  • Bristle brush
  • Scissors
  • 1 cup cornstarch
  • ½ cup baking soda
  • Bowl with cover
  • Flour sifter


  • Replace the baking soda with oatmeal if your pet has highly sensitive skin that irritates easily.
  • Add a few drops of essential oil to the dry shampoo mixture before sifting it over your pet. Essential oils give fur a pleasant fragrance without causing irritation.
  • Skip the oils, however, if his greasy fur coat is the reason you’re using dry shampoo in the first place.


  • Do not use dry shampoo on pets with open sores, wounds or other skin irritations.
  • Do not apply the dry shampoo around your pet’s eyes. Instead sift a small handful into the palm of your hand and gently stroke it around his face.

Video of the Day

Brought to you by Cuteness
Brought to you by Cuteness

About the Author

Christina Bednarz Schnell began writing full-time in 2010. Her areas of expertise include child development and behavior, medical conditions and pet health. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in international relations.

Photo Credits

  • German shepherd pupy dirty image by csaba fikker from