How to Wash Your Dog Naturally With Baking Soda and Apple Cider Vinegar

Wash dog with baking soda and apple cider vinegar
This dog is the inspiration for my other
blog, The Pointy Eared Beast.

I wash my hair with baking soda and condition it with apple cider vinegar, but did you know this is also a great way to wash dogs? Especially those with skin conditions.

I have a dog that for years suffered from folliculitis, which would result in horrible, small red bumps on his back that caused him incredible itching and pain. I had been stressed for so long trying to help relieve his discomfort with medication, various diets and gentle shampoos.

Then it struck me that if I'm benefiting by using only natural bath products, perhaps it would work on my dog too. After researching and confirming that neither baking soda nor apple cider vinegar would harm him (you should always check to make sure new things you try with your pets will not hurt them), I decided to give him a mild bath with baking soda, followed by an apple cider vinegar rinse.


You'll Need:

- baking soda
- apple cider vinegar
- warm water


1. Bathe your dog with a solution of about 1 tablespoon of baking soda in every 1.5 cups of warm water you use.
2. Let it soak into its fur for about a minute, during which I like to run a rubber brush through my dog's fur to remove dead skin and hair.
3. Thoroughly rinse out the baking soda solution.
4. Follow up with a rinse of diluted apple cider vinegar (1 tablespoon of apple cider vinegar per cup of warm water).
5. Let that sit for 1-2 minutes. My dog finds this extremely unpleasant since he isn't a fan of the smell.
6. Rinse out your dog's coat thoroughly, then dry him off completely, preferably with a hair dryer.


Make sure that if you choose to bathe your dog this way to keep the solutions away from his face. Both baking soda and apple cider vinegar are extremely painful if they get into a dog's eyes or nose. Also, be gentle if your dog has any skin conditions, as there may be a stinging sensation if any open wounds come in contact with the apple cider vinegar.

I stuck with this bath once every week, and was amazed at how much my dog's skin improved. By the second month he was completely free of painful red bumps and itching. I suspect his previous condition was due to clogged hair follicles caused by sensitivities to even the gentlest of dog shampoos. But the baking soda cleared that right up and even neutralized any unpleasant doggy smells, and the apple cider vinegar restored the pH balance of his skin. Speaking of which, apple cider vinegar and white vinegar are also great natural deterrents against fleas and ticks.

I highly recommend this method to anyone with a dog who may be suffering from the same condition. I was so glad to have thought of it for my dog, and he's been a much happier and more comfortable canine ever since.

How to Wash Your Dog Naturally With Baking Soda and Apple Cider VinegarHow to Wash Your Dog Naturally With Baking Soda and Apple Cider Vinegar


  1. I have tried many things for the past year... We have 4 dogs which only 1 is not effected... 1 is almost cleared up, 1 is halfway to being cleaned up, and 1 got worse....

    Last night because of your post was the first time I've tried bathing them with vinegar, with baking soda n some cooking oil

    The dogs are much more comfy today, no scratching or digging.... I plan to give the worst one another bath later today....

    Glad I found your post, I think this might finally clear up and get all their beautiful hair back....

    1. I can't tell you how happy I am to hear that! I know how helpless it feels to watch your pets suffer. I'm so happy to know that my dog's bathing regimen is helping ease other dogs' discomfort as well.

      My dog's folliculitis hasn't flared up at all since I began consistently bathing him in baking soda and apple cider vinegar. I also supplement his diet with a little virgin coconut oil every day, which has improved his allergies and overall skin condition significantly. I plan to post more about this soon on

      Thank you for taking the time to let me know that this has been working for your pets; I hope your dogs continue to feel better. Please feel free post again with an update on their conditions, as I'm curious to know whether other people will find as much success as I did with this method.

  2. Thank you for posting about this. I've been looking for something to bathe my dog in besides commercial products. She doesn't have any skin issues, I was just thinking to keep down the doggy smell.

  3. thank you for posting this, it has been very helpful!

  4. I have a quick question. Does it make dogs' hair soft??

    1. On my short-haired dog, it makes his coat very smooth
      and shiny, without any tackiness or rough patches. I
      imagine apple cider vinegar would also make a long-haired dog's coat soft, as I use ACV daily as a conditioner myself and am quite happy with how soft my hair is. :)

  5. My girl suffering with this types of skin problem too. I have tried different medicated shampoo in the market but still the same. I even brought her to the vet and took a course of medication. She was recovered when on medication. But back to early state when stop medication. Changing of food doesn't help. She suffering terrible itchy and red spot all over the body now. I hope this method can help her. Appreciate your recommendations. Thank you very much!

    1. I hope this helps her too. Do write again to let me know if it's working!

  6. Will white distilled vinegar work? That is what I have right now.

    1. I've used white distilled vinegar before with no problems. The smell may be a little strong during the wash though, and your dog may find it more unpleasant than ACV. Just remember to dilute it!


Please keep comments relevant to the post! Thanks a bunch!