You've probably seen "paraben free" on cosmetics, cleansers, and other personal care items. (Parabens are synthetic compounds that act as preservatives.) You may have even read why people are worried about parabens: there may be links between breast cancer and parabens because they are considered "endocrine disruptors." (The University of California at Berkeley raised concerns in a study issued in Fall of 2015.)
So...why does this matter to us? Why do we care whether our products are paraben-free? Well....it's our hands and arms that are up to our elbows in dog shampoo when giving our dogs a bath. (Just like yours.) Dog grooming products may not be considered personal care items but they might as well be given the amount of skin contact.
Yep, we know your exposure is pretty limited - you don't wash your dogs as much as you wash your own hair but dog groomers do. And yep, we know the data is still in development. But, why would we take the chance? So we opt for a paraben-free formula. So go ahead, wash your pup with one less worry....if you can catch & corral them into the tub. (My 19yr old Abby is still too fast...)
We were psyched to be included in the Naturally, Danny Seo program on NBC last Saturday morning (3/4/17). He chose our services location in Los Angeles to film his Eco Grooming episode - so fun to see so many of "our" dogs in the spotlight! Rockefeller getting a "green" bath with our toxin-free Simply Clean shampoo...Bella with the stylish bandana that can also ward off pests like fleas....and Daisy in a star turn as the volunteer for the nourishing massage. (LOL she ran over the other pups to leap into his lap!)
"Why can't I just use my own shampoo on my dog? It has lots of moisturizers and it smells nice?"
A dog's skin is simply different than their human's. Our pH is more acidic than theirs and our shampoo is formulated for that acidity. So using your shampoo can actually harm your dog's skin by stripping away natural oils and setting up an environment for bacteria to grow. It can set up a wicked cycle: you wash your dog with your shampoo - your dog's skin gets irritated - bacteria moves in - your dog's starts scratching - a slightly "off" smell develops - you wash them again.
For more info: http://www.petmd.com/dog/grooming/evr_dg_shampoo_for_dogs
Top Dog Tips has an enormous database of product reviews and pragmatic advice about dog care. We were pleased that they reviewed our toxin-free products including this comment about Simply Fresh which is both a between-baths freshening spray and an all-natural pest repellent.
"Eco Dog Care also adds cedar and geranium as natural flea and tick repellents. We use a topical treatment on our dogs as well. It’s all natural and our vet told us we should boost its effectiveness with an all-natural spray if we’re going for a hike or camping. I like that this freshening spray incorporates the natural treatment that I was already using and adds more benefits, like a shiny and healthy coat, as well."
You can also view this video clip review of our newest product, Simply Clean Anti-Itch which we created based on customer feedback during Green Festivals in LA and NYC.
The whole topic of toxins can sometimes be overwhelming so let me give you an overview of which ingredients - commonly found in other dog grooming products -- that we choose NOT to use and why. Some reasons are simple and clear - chemical lathering agents (surfactants) can strip skin of healthy oil and set up itchiness and possibly infections. Other reasons - possible links between these ingredients and cancer - are more complicated and tough to prove conclusively.
So here goes...
DEA is derived from healthy coconut oil...yay... but.... has been processed and refined with harsh chemicals. Its function in cosmetics/grooming products is to generate lather and foam. It can be pretty strong stuff that can dry out skin and cause itchiness and, worse, set up infections. Instead of using DEA, we chose a plant-based cleanser that gently yet thoroughly cleans your dog's skin and coat.
SLS - sodium laureth/laurel sulfates are also used in a lot of products for the same reason - foam. We've all be trained by decades of marketing to thinking that bubbles=clean. Nope, they don't. We've used our Simply Clean shampoo for the past 5 years in our very busy business in LA and would have been out of business if it didn't clean all sizes, shapes and types of dogs. SLS is a surfactant like DEA and can be harsh and drying on the skin. At best, it's uncomfortably itchy for your pup and, at worst, it can lead to open sores (from scratching) and possible infection. Our shampoo uses healthy botanicals to wash your dog - it doesn't have lots of bubbles, but it's safe and works great. (And the run-off won't pollute groundwater.)
Phthalates - which can help extend the life of fragrance in a product - are tightly regulated in the EU and Canadian markets because they're thought to be endocrine disruptors and dangerous for women of child-bearing age. (I'm way past that but I don't really like shampoo to mess with my endocrines or anything else in my body when I have a choice.) Our products are infused with rich essential oils with fresh, unique fragrances so your pup, your car, your couch and your bed will smell yummy.
Parabens - used to kill bacteria and fungus - are trickier to understand in terms of risk. But, there are people connecting the dots between parabens and cancer so we don't understand why it would be worth the risk for clean hair. We chose olive oil squalane, a vegan ingredient, as our preservative.
Our goal is to offer you products that work well and that reduce or eliminate risks to your dog and to you. Why would you worry about your safety? Well, just like us, you're probably the one bathing your dog so you don't need to be up to your elbows in synthetic bubbles and damaging chemicals. We chose healthy ingredients that work well for you and your dog.
We chose healthy ingredients that work well for you and your dog. Please send me a note at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any follow-up questions or comments. Thank you. Jane