Can I Use Baby Shampoo On My Cat? ( You Must Know The Answer )

A lot of pet owners use baby shampoos to bathe cats thinking that baby shampoos are free of any harsh chemicals and will not cause any damage to the cat as they are effective and safe for babies’ skin.

However, this notion is completely false. Baby shampoo may certainly prove to be better than adult shampoos on cat’s sensitive fur but it is definitely not an ideal solution.

Vets and experienced pet owners do not recommend baby shampoos for cats. It proves to be harmful and harsh on cats’ skins if used for a long period of time.

Instead of baby shampoos or any shampoos specifically made for humans, cat owners are advised to use shampoos that have been specially produced for cats.

In this article, we are going to explain if is it safe to use baby shampoo on your cat. Let’s get started

Can I use baby shampoo on my cat?

In short, It’s not recommended to use baby shampoo on your cat.

The answer to this question will not be a straightaway no but won’t be a positive yes either. Some pet owners use baby shampoo to bathe their cats but vets have strictly warned people to refrain from using baby shampoos on their cat’s skin.

Baby shampoos are not free of toxic substances and harsh chemicals. The majority of the baby shampoo commercials claim that the shampoo will not cause irritation to the baby’s eyes.

Companies use mild substances to prepare baby shampoos in comparison to the adult shampoos. However, baby shampoos are not entirely free of toxic substances or harmful chemicals.

These chemicals can be extremely harsh on cats’ sensitive skin. Vets and pet owners recommend using shampoos specially produced for cats rather than baby shampoos. Even that should be avoided as far as possible.

As per a Forbes report, baby shampoos contain certain toxic compounds such as formaldehyde and dioxane that is extremely dangerous for animals.

Formaldehyde causes irritation in eyes and conjunctivitis. It is a potent skin allergen and causes irritation and rashes on the skin.

It also has dangerous effects on the respiratory and nervous systems of cats. Dioxane causes kidney and liver damage in animals if their skin is exposed to it for a long period of time.

Also, the strong scent of baby shampoos may also cause irritation to your cat in her nose and throat.

Why should you not depend on baby shampoo all the time?

Cats have healing properties in their saliva and can groom themselves by licking their fur and body. They do not require bathing often.

Your cat will clean herself on her own and lick all the dirt. This is why most of the feline parents are not worried about bathing their cats often.

However, on rare occasions when you do bathe your cat, do not rely on baby shampoos. They may seem harmless but contain harsh chemicals that will cause irritation to your cat’s fur.

The humans and cats’ skin have not been designed in a similar fashion. They have different skin textures and different pH levels.

Baby shampoos are produced keeping in mind the sensitive skin of babies. Cats’ skin is more sensitive and baby shampoos may not react well on cat’s fur.

So the answer to the question that why should you not depend on baby shampoo all the time is simple. It is a shampoo for human babies and not a kitten.

Even if you treat your cat like your little baby, do not blindly use any baby products available in the market for your feline pet. Refrain from conducting experiments on your cat. 

Even though short term use of baby shampoo may not have visible harmful effects on your cat, it may prove to be fatal if used for a prolonged time.

However, it is extremely important to remember that whatever shampoo your soap you choose to bathe your cat should not be used often.

Cats are capable of self-grooming. They clean themselves by licking their fur and do not require frequent bathing or shampoos containing strong chemicals. You can use a mild cat shampoo that will easily remove any grime or dirt from your cat’s body.

Alternatives to baby shampoo

You should never use baby shampoo on your cat’s skin sensitive skin. It might come in handy and seem to be a favorable option but as stated in the above paragraphs, it can be extremely dangerous for your cats.

Do not rely on any baby shampoo to bathe your cat. Instead, choose alternatives that are easily available. A lot of companies produce cat-friendly shampoos that are free of any toxic chemicals, take good care of the cats’ sensitive skin, and ensure that the pH balance of the skin is maintained.

Find the links to some of the cat shampoos that are the best alternatives to the baby shampoos that you currently apply on your cat’s skin.

  1. Dechra DermaBenSs Shampoo ( My Top Recommendation )
  2. Vet’s Best Flea and Tick Waterless Bath Foam for Cats
  3. Vet’s Best Waterless Cat Bath
  4. Espree for Kittens
  5. Furminator deShedding


Baby shampoo advertisements claim chemical-free and natural products to their potential buyers. However, this is not entirely true.

These shampoos may be mild on your baby’s skin and must cause less irritation but are not a feasible option for your cat’s extremely sensitive skin.

Repeated use will lead to irritation and redness in the eyes or on skin. If you have been applying baby shampoo on your cat, stop using it right away and rather choose a cat shampoo available in the market.

Related Cat Grooming Topics:

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Resources & Citations:

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