Why Pet Groomers Must Sanitize Shampoo Dilution Bottles

Dilution Bottles Can Be Breeding Grounds for Bacteria

Many pet groomers purchase pet shampoo that is highly concentrated and meant to be diluted. Diluting pet shampoo actually produces desirable results! However, many groomers do not realize that by diluting these shampoos, they eliminate the antimicrobial properties of the preservatives in the shampoo concentrates. When you combine the organic properties in most dog and cat shampoos with the particles of bacteria in the tap water used for dilution, you create a breeding ground for bacteria.

The types of bacteria that one might find in diluted grooming shampoo and bottles include:

  • Pseudomonas aeruginosa (antibiotic resistant)
  • Staphlyococcus intermedius (antibiotic resistant)
  • Escherichia coli (we all know about E. coli)
  • Proteus organisms (read more here)

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Possible Negative Consequences to Pets

The problem with allowing these nasty bacteria to grow in the diluted shampoo and mixing bottles is that the pets can become infected by them. Any pet with a compromised immune system is in danger of acquiring an infection through a groomer's use of unsanitary shampoo. The bacteria may be introduced through lesions on the skin that are either preexisting or caused by grooming-related nicks or other skin or follicular trauma such as very short reverse clipping or hand stripping.

One example of a nasty complication that can arise from the use of dirty grooming bottles is Post-Grooming Furunculosis. You can find more information about the condition here and here.

Pet Groomers: How to Sanitize Shampoo Dilution Bottles

Keeping grooming shampoo dilution bottles sanitized requires only a few easy steps at the end of every day:

  1. Empty unused diluted shampoo from all bottles and rinse well with water.
  2. Rinse each bottle with a bit of bleach water or 1% vinegar solution, making sure to also rinse lids, spouts, and pumps.
  3. Keep bottles open, allow to air dry overnight.

That's it! That's all it takes to maintain sanitary, bacteria-free mixing bottles in the grooming salon.

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