Pet products formulation


We have been formulating personal care products for more than a decade and now the company would like to explore pet products formulations and honestly, I don't have any idea on formulation this type of products. All I know is that the pH is different compared to personal care products and I may be wrong.

Anyone here who does have any idea and experience on pet products formulation?

What should I do for a start?

thanks for those who will answer.


  • What should I do for a start?

    Go to your local pet superstore and check the LOI of the products that you are interested in emulating.

    I have kept dogs most of my life. They all lived to a ripe old age and were quite healthy. I bathed them very occasionally using the same shampoo that I used on my own hair but also made sure that they had plenty of access to swim in rivers, lakes and streams to allow fresh, clean water to offer its benefits.

    I doubt that fiddling about adjusting fractions of a pH level will worry your pet very much.

    From a sales & marketing aspect, pet toiletries are often a sideline in the product ranges of the large pet food manufacturers (OK, they may be contracted out for production). Is there a market for a new (therefore unknown) independent?
  • Animal skin tends to have a higher native pH than humans and is thinner and more sensitive.  For pets you should formulate at neutral to slightly basic pH.

    Pet products are pretty much Shampoo, Conditioner, Detangler ... as Johnb mentioned ... cruise the isles of the pet store to get ideas.

    Other that the pH, formulating for Pets is not much different than formulating for humans.
    Chemist/Microbiologist formulating in the Organic & Naturals arena under ECOCert/Natural Products Assn/Whole Foods/National Organic Program guidelines focused skincare & haircare products. 

    Provides Formulation Development and Lab-Scale Contract Manufacturing Services.  See website for details

  • Keep Ph at 7 for shampoo and the rest should be easy.Test at 10% dilution for ocular irritation using iv-vitro HEtCam.Have used variations of Baby Shampoo for this application should you want a mildness claim but consider RM costs.
  • Thanks a lot, this will fit as a good start. :)
  • I make products almost exclusively for the pet, grooming, and veterinary markets and what's been stated here is all true, there's is not much difference between pet shampoo and people shampoo in terms of function. Dogs, cats and horses all have a neutral PH. In terms of formulas, I make over a hundred different products and most of them, like shampoos, conditioners, ointments, sprays, lotions, colognes, even nail polishes are all, more or less, just variations of a few simple base formulations. It really depends what kinds of products you're interested in making and JohnB's advice is really the best. Find a product you like and try to make one similar. I would try to keep it relatively simple. We've tried marketing shampoos with a myriad of bells and whistle added, (panthenol, essential oils, aloe,) that perform better and that are expensive to make, but our best sellers, by far, are almost exclusively the simple ones with a catchy name, a pretty color and fragrance, and an eye catching label. If your interested in making medicated, therapeutic, or any products that make a claim, then do your research, do your lab work, and follow FDA and EPA guidelines, where applicable. If you're interested in a particular formulation check chemical manufacturers web sites they often have formulas available, like here.  Read Perry's article here. Actually, read this entire forum; the people who post here are highly-knowledgeable, serious professionals with a collective experience spanning centuries, intelligence by proxy!

    Here's a basic clear pet shampoo formula to get you started.
    Pet Shampoo
    70%      Water
    1.7%     Chembetaine 
    23%      SLS  - Sodium Lauryl Sulfate      
    3.7%     CDEA  - cocamide diethanolamine (!)
    .15%     Fragrance  (as desired) 
    .23%     Citric Acid 50%   (adjust to 7)
    1%        Salt  (adjust per viscosity required)

    !Ruh Roh Raggy!
    Depending on the market you're interested in, or your customers chemical sensibilities, CDEA is a chemical you might want to find replacement for because it's on the Prop65 list of hazardous chemicals. Mea-betaine blends like Amidex C-cm work relatively well with a little tinkering. 
  • @sheng If you need advice I'd be happy to help.  I've been doing pet products for about 30 years as well as human.  I don't get on the forum as much as I would like to so send me a PM.  This way I'll get an email notification
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