What's the best shampoo for wool or fleece coats?

Wool or fleece coat breeds include > Poodle, Bichon Frise, Labradoodle, Spoodle, Cavoodle, Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier, Bedlington, Bouvier des Flandres, Portuguese Water Dog and more. Scroll down to find out which shampoo, conditioner, coat sprays and more match this coat type... 

photos of wool and fleece dog coats

About the wool and fleece coat type

The typical wool or fleece, non-shed coat is thick, curly or wavy, and has a lot of volume. In fact it’s a myth that they are non-shed. All coat types shed. However with wool and fleece coats the shedding process is much slower, and dead hair usually gets trapped in the coat instead of dropped to the floor, making them much more prone to knotting. Some tend towards being dry and frizz-prone, especially if frequently brushed or frequently washed. In general though, they tend to be neither too dry nor too oily, usually have no 'doggy' smell and dirt can usually be brushed out once dry, instead of having to be washed out.

Choosing the right SHAMPOO

Scroll down to skip to the best-match products in our shampoo range

Lighter-weight shampoo is preferred as wool and fleece coats are not usually oily or odour-prone. Using any shampoo by itself is not recommended for wool or fleece coats, as in order to clean the coat, shampoo opens the cuticle, leaving it rough. This increases the risk of knots, as well as frizz and breakage when brushing.

To reduce tangles and knots choose a mild, light shampoo (or a shampoo you can dilute) and always follow with a diluted conditioner, or a coat spray, to close and smooth the cuticle. Gentle, mild shampoo that won’t strip natural coat oils is ideal, especially for frequent bathing. If extra lift and body is required, try a volumising or 'body' shampoo.

Choosing the right CONDITIONER 

Scroll down to skip to the best-match products in our conditioner range

Rather than the more common, heavy, very moisturising conditioners - which can weigh down wool coats - either use a diluted conditioner, or use a spray-on conditioner instead.

Fleece coats with a wavy texture (rather than tightly curled), do benefit from normal strength conditioner however, as it helps add a little weight to create and define smooth, loose, separate waves and reduce frizz and knotting - but you can still use conditioner diluted for the fleece coat if you find it too heavy.

For both wool and fleece coat types, conditioner smooths and closes the cuticle after shampoo use, reducing the chance of knots forming, and giving a smoother, more even result when clipping. A coat spray used while brushing is another option instead of conditioner (no need to double up!). They give targeted conditioning where the coat needs it.

If the coat seems heavy or lacking lift, try a volumising shampoo, and still follow either with diluted conditioner, or skip conditioner and use a coat spray instead. Without that oily layer some coats have, wool and fleece coats can be more prone to staining and fading, especially white and paler colours. Colour correcting shampoo is popular for using as a second rinse, after the primary shampoo, or by itself.

TIP: You can skip liquid conditioner all together if using a coat spray. Coat sprays also help protect from brush damage as wool and fleece coats should be more frequently brushed. Some coat sprays also double as detanglers to help with easier knot removal with less discomfort for the pet.

Best-match SHAMPOO for wool and fleece coats

SHAMPOO (for all ages):

Bio-Groom So Gentle Shampoo > A very mild, lightweight, hypoallergenic option for frequent use or for sensitive skin. Can be diluted.

Bio-Groom Sulfate Free Argan Oil Shampoo > Mild and light, but more nourishing for dry or frizz-prone coats. Can be diluted.

Fidos Everyday Shampoo > A mild, soap-free, frequent-use shampoo that rinses out quickly. 

Bio-Groom Extra Body Shampoo > Adds fullness, texture and body without weighing down the coat. Dilute for frequent use.

PUPPY shampoo:

Pet Head Puppy Fun > Gentle, mild, for frequent use. Fresh orange scent. Can dilute. Best used when coat is still light and thin before adult coat comes through. 

Bio-Groom Fluffy Puppy > Light, gentle, mild. For a puppy's first coat before adult coat comes through. For frequent use. Clean baby shampoo scent. Can be diluted.

COLOUR shampoo:

A colour shampoo can correct fading and bronzing of darker coats from sun damage, and help brighten and remove stains from white and paler coats. 

Bio-Groom Super White > Our best-selling whitening shampoo for all white and paler coats. Will not bleach or damage the coat.

Bio-Groom Ultra Black > Returns a deep, glossy black to sun-damaged, bronzed or faded coats.

Bio-Groom Bronze Lustre > Highlights coat colours from gold to brown for apricot, cafe, red and chocolate coats. 

CONDITIONER:

Bio-Groom Silk > Our best-selling conditioner. Light enough not to weigh down the coat. Use neat for extra conditioning for a dry or frizzy coat, or dilute for normal coats. Light, fresh, clean fragrance.

Bio-Groom Groom N Fresh > Moisturising conditioner for drier or frizz-prone coats. Sweet, floral fragrance like perfume. Can be diluted.

COAT SPRAYS:

Pet Head Detangler > Detangler aid to help with removing knots. Spray on specific area only as needed for targeted knot removal.

Bio-Groom Anti-Stat > A frequent use, brushing aid that can be used all over to reduce static and frizz for knot-prone coats. 

Tear & saliva STAINS:

Best treated frequently rather than left to build up. Trim hair shorter around eyes and mouth to avoid hair irritating the eyes or getting in to the mouth.

Fidos Tear Stain Remover > Best seller. Apply with a cotton pad or Pet Head Face and Body Wipes >

EARS:

A regular wipe clean with a gentle ear cleaner is recommended to prevent wax and dirt build-up, especially in breeds with folded-down ears.

Fidos Ear Drops >