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10 Best Flea Shampoos for Cats – 2024 Reviews & Top Picks

Dean Eby

By Dean Eby


cat bath When your cat has fleas, the last thing you want to do is mess around with products that aren’t effective. You need a quick solution that actually works so you can prevent the fleas from spreading.

We’ve found 10 effective solutions, though they’re not all created equal. In the following reviews, you’ll see how some of the most popular flea shampoos for cats compare. We’ll give you our top recommendations, ensuring that you’ll know which shampoo you can trust to solve your flea problems by the end of this article.

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A Quick Comparison of Our Favorites of 2024

Rating Image Product Details
Best Overall
SimpleSource SimpleSource
  • All-natural ingredients
  • Kills fleas, mosquitos, and ticks
  • Safe for adults and kittens
  • Best Value
    Second place
    Veterinary Formula Clinical Care Veterinary Formula Clinical Care
  • Kills fleas and ticks on contact
  • Exfoliates and deodorizes
  • Contains lanolin and aloe
  • Premium Choice
    Third place
    Adams Plus Flea & Tick Shampoo Adams Plus Flea & Tick Shampoo
  • Prevents re-infestation for up to 28 days
  • Kills flea eggs and larvae
  • Conditions the skin and coat
  • Zodiac Flea & Tick Cat Shampoo Zodiac Flea & Tick Cat Shampoo
  • Doesn’t take much shampoo to be effective
  • Kills fleas and ticks quickly
  • Includes coconut conditioners for a healthy coat
  • Vet’s Best Flea & Tick Cat Shampoo Vet’s Best Flea & Tick Cat Shampoo
  • Crafted from plant-based ingredients
  • Deodorizes and cleans without harsh chemicals
  • Kills ticks and fleas on contact, including flea larvae
  • The 10 Best Flea Shampoos for Cats

    1. SimpleSource Flea & Tick Cat Shampoo – Best Overall

    SimpleSource’s Flea and Tick Cat Shampoo is our pick for the best overall flea shampoo for cats, and it’s safe to use on adult cats and kittens over 12 weeks old. It uses natural ingredients to eliminate fleas, flea eggs, larvae, mosquitos, and ticks.

    SimpleSource deodorizes and cleans your cat’s coat and is safe to use once a week. Although it’s not designed to eliminate infestations in your home, the cedarwood and lemongrass extracts can prevent new pests from attacking your cat after their bath.

    It’s inexpensive, lathers up nicely, and most customers were happy with the results. However, some complained that the shampoo’s scent was too strong.

    • Kills fleas, ticks, and mosquitos
    • No harsh chemicals
    • Safe for kittens over 12 weeks
    • Made in the USA
    • Scent is too strong for some owners

    2. Veterinary Formula Clinical Care Flea & Tick Shampoo – Best Value

    The Veterinary Formula Flea & Tick Shampoo is safe for animals over the age of 12 weeks, including cats, dogs, horses, and more. Since it contains aloe and lanolin, it soothes skin that’s likely irritated from flea and tick bites while gently killing the pests.

    It controls populations of fleas and ticks on contact, and you’ll see the effects as soon as you wash your cat. While killing off the infestation of fleas on your feline, this shampoo also exfoliates the skin and coat. It leaves behind healthy and vibrant fur.

    However, it can have negative side effects if your cat ingests it, so ensure you rinse your cat thoroughly after washing with this product. To conclude, we think this is the best flea shampoo for cats for the money.

    • Controls both fleas and ticks on contact
    • Simultaneously exfoliates skin and coat
    • Safe on many animals over 12 weeks old
    • Contains aloe and lanolin to soothe irritated skin
    • Can have negative side effects if ingested

    3. Adams Plus Flea & Tick Shampoo – Premium Choice

    Adams Plus Flea & Tick Shampoo with Precor

    Adams Plus flea and tick shampoo is a bit pricier than many alternatives, but since it’s such an effective product, it’s worth the extra cost in our eyes. Not only does it kill fleas, but it also eradicates their eggs and larvae to prevent a re-infestation for up to 28 days. This allows you to break the lifecycle of the fleas rather than just reducing flea numbers for a short time.

    While killing fleas and ticks, this shampoo is simultaneously nourishing your cat’s skin and coat. It contains oatmeal, lanolin, aloe, and coconut extract, which leave your cat’s skin and coat moisturized and healthy, reducing the itchy, patchy spots that can arise during flea infestations.

    Your cat will even smell fresh after bathing with this shampoo. It might be strong enough to cure flea, tick, and lice infestations, but there’s no medicated odor left behind, and it won’t dry out or damage your cat’s coat or skin.

    • Prevents re-infestation for up to 28 days
    • Kills flea eggs and larvae
    • Conditions the skin and coat
    • Leaves your dog smelling fresh

    • More expensive than many similar products

    4. Zodiac Flea & Tick Shampoo for Cats

    Zodiac Flea & Tick Shampoo for Dogs & Cats

    This flea and tick shampoo for dogs and cats from Zodiac is priced reasonably, considering the amount you get in a bottle. It kills fleas and ticks quickly, and you can see the results as you wash. Additionally, coconut conditioners are included in this formula, which keep your cat’s coat healthy and nourished.

    Thankfully, this is a pretty strong shampoo and it doesn’t require much to be effective, which is good since it doesn’t really lather well. In fact, it takes just 1.5 tablespoons to wash a five-pound cat, so you’ll get plenty of use out of a single bottle. Altogether, it does a great job of cleaning your cat and killing fleas, leaving behind a pleasant, albeit faint, scent when you’re finished.

    • Reasonable pricing
    • Doesn’t take much shampoo to be effective
    • Includes coconut conditioners for a healthy coat
    • Kills fleas and ticks quickly

    • Doesn’t lather well

    5. Vet’s Best Plant-Based Formula Cat Flea Shampoo

    Vet's Best Plant Based Formula Flea & Tick Cat Shampoo, 12-oz bottle

    Vet’s Best Plant-Based Formula flea and tick cat shampoo is an effective product for flea control crafted from plant-based ingredients, so you know they’re gentle and safe. Even so, it kills fleas and ticks on contact and takes care of flea larvae in the process, ensuring that re-infestation is unlikely.

    Since it’s plant-based, there are no harsh chemicals in this formula. Still, it manages to deodorize and clean your cat’s coat, leaving behind a light and fresh scent, thanks to ingredients like clove oil and cottonseed oil. But these natural ingredients don’t come cheap, making Vet’s Best one of the pricier options for curing your cat’s flea problems.

    • Crafted from plant-based ingredients
    • Kills ticks and fleas on contact, including flea larvae
    • Deodorizes and cleans without harsh chemicals

    • Pricier than alternatives

    6. Sentry PurrScriptions Plus Flea & Tick Shampoo for Cats

    Sentry PurrScriptions Plus Flea & Tick Shampoo for Cats

    Many cat owners will find the incredibly low pricing of the Sentry PurrScriptions Plus flea shampoo to be attractive. It’s the cheapest flea shampoo for cats that we’ve seen. The nylar in this formula sterilizes and kills eggs; an effect that’s supposed to last for up to a month, though it seems that the fleas generally return far earlier.

    Pyrethrins are used to naturally kill mature fleas and ticks without damaging your cat’s coat and skin. Despite the low price, it manages to kill quite a few fleas on contact, though it’s far from the most effective flea-killer on this list. It’s an excellent choice for the price, but if your cat is suffering from a severe flea infestation, you’ll want something stronger to eradicate it.

    • Priced cheaper than alternatives
    • Pyrethrins kill fleas and ticks
    • Nylar sterilizes and kills eggs for up to a month

    • Not the most effective flea killer on contact
    • Fleas return quicker than a month

    7. NaturVet Herbal Flea Shampoo for Cats

    NaturVet Herbal Flea Dog & Cat Shampoo

    Available in a 16-ounce bottle for a reasonable price, the NaturVet Herbal flea shampoo for cats is a gentler alternative to flea shampoos that use chemicals and harsh additives to kill fleas. Instead, this formula utilizes natural ingredients that are all pet-safe. It’s gentle enough to be used on cats and kittens of any age, though that means it’s also not the most effective product at killing fleas.

    Granted, it does kill some of the fleas. However, you’ll find that this formula doesn’t prevent re-infestation since it won’t take care of flea eggs or larvae. The fleas will return only a few days after washing with this shampoo. But considering the price, you’re getting a fair amount, and it’s very gentle on your cat’s skin and coat.

    This product is a great choice if you have a flea infestation on a kitten under 12 weeks of age. Otherwise, we prefer a stronger and more effective formula for killing fleas.

    • Priced reasonably for the amount you get
    • Uses natural ingredients
    • Soothes the skin
    • Gentle enough for kittens of any age

    • Not terribly effective for killing fleas
    • Doesn’t prevent re-infestation

    8. kin+kind Flea & Tick Dog & Cat Shampoo

    kin+kind Flea & Tick Dog & Cat Shampoo

    The kin+kind flea and tick shampoo for cats and dogs is made with essential oils rather than harsh chemicals. It’s still pretty effective at killing flea and tick populations, but it’s made entirely with plant-based ingredients. Of course, the downside is the high price tag accompanying this shampoo; it’s quite a bit more expensive than most products.

    You might expect that a shampoo made with all-natural ingredients would be easy on the skin, but this shampoo tends to dry cats’ skin out. It leaves behind a fresh and natural fragrance of cedarwood, peppermint, and lavender, but some might find the odor too strong.

    • Plant-based formula
    • Uses essential oils instead of chemicals
    • Leaves behind scents of cedarwood, peppermint, and lavender

    • Outrageously expensive
    • Tends to dry skin out
    • Some find the shampoo’s odor to be too strong

    9. Sergeant’s Gold Flea & Tick Cat Shampoo

    Sergeant's Gold Flea & Tick Cat Shampoo

    Sergeant’s Gold flea and tick shampoo for cats kills fleas and ticks, reduces their populations, and eradicates infestations. Other products kill fleas better, but this shampoo prevents re-infestations for up to 30 days by preventing the fleas from reproducing. Still, you’ll probably need to wash your cat several times to kill the fleas with this product.

    However, Sergeant’s is expensive and costs twice as much as similar products. Worse, it contains chemicals that many pet owners won’t want to douse their cats with, which can leave your cat’s skin feeling dried out and flaky.

    We might be more open to the high price if this was the single most effective flea killer on the market, but many products offer similar performance at a lower price without leaving your cat’s coat and skin feeling unhealthy and dry.

    • Prevents re-infestations for 30 days
    • Prevents fleas from reproducing

    • It’s prohibitively expensive
    • Contains chemicals that can dry out the skin
    • Other products kill fleas more effectively

    10. Fleabusters RX for Fleas Plus Shampoo

    Fleabusters RX for Fleas Plus Shampoo

    Fleabusters RX sounds like a product that will eradicate your flea issues once and for all. It has one of the highest price-to-product ratios of any flea shampoo we’ve seen, but is it effective? Well, sort of. You have to use a lot of the formula to kill the fleas. Other shampoos can kill more fleas with less product at a more affordable price, which is why we’re not big fans of the Fleabusters RX shampoo.

    Luckily, this shampoo is made with all-natural, non-toxic ingredients, so it’s completely safe for your cat. It also won’t leave your cat’s skin and coat feeling dry and worn since it moisturizes the skin with coconut oil. This formula is so easy on the skin that you won’t need to wear gloves while washing your cat.

    Still, given the high price you pay for a small amount, we can’t recommend the Fleabusters RX shampoo.

    • Moisturizes the skin with coconut oil
    • Made with all-natural and non-toxic ingredients

    • Very expensive
    • You get very little in the bottle
    • Requires a ton of shampoo to be effective
    • Doesn’t kill fleas better than other products

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    Buyer’s Guide: Select the Best Flea Shampoos for Cats

    We’re confident that you’ll find an effective flea shampoo for your cat. But if you’re the type of person who prefers to make a more informed decision before making a purchase, this short buyer’s guide is for you.

    How to Pick a Flea Shampoo for Cats

    Unless you know a lot about flea shampoos, it can be difficult to compare two products. Ingredients lists are full of long names, and every shampoo claims to be the best option. To make the decision easier, we’ve narrowed down all the comparison points to the most important ones.

    If you focus on these factors and choose a shampoo that meets your needs, we’re confident you’ll be satisfied with the shampoo you’ve picked.

    Effectiveness at Killing Fleas

    While you expect the flea shampoo you choose to be effective for cleaning your cat, its primary purpose is to eradicate the infestation of fleas plaguing your feline. Getting your cat clean is secondary. Naturally, the best flea shampoos are the ones that kill the most fleas rather than the ones that leave your cat the cleanest and freshest.

    Unfortunately, many of the most effective flea killers also contain harsher ingredients and additives that can dry out your cat’s coat. However, many products contain moisturizers and natural additives to condition your cat’s coat and skin while still doing serious damage to the fleas residing on your cat.

    close up fleas on cat
    Image Credit: KanphotoSS, Shutterstock

    Does it Kill Flea Eggs and Larvae?

    If you want to get rid of the fleas once and for all, you have to kill off the eggs and larvae. This requires more than simply killing the mature fleas. Many products kill fleas without harming the larvae and eggs, which means your flea problem will resurface.

    Look for products that prevent re-infestations. These generally prevent such occurrences by killing off the eggs and larvae. Once the eggs and larvae are dead, any recurring infection will likely be caused by the reintroduction of fleas from another source.

    Nourish the Skin and Coat

    All the flea-killing chemicals and ingredients in a flea shampoo for cats can wreak major havoc on your cat’s skin and coat. That’s why we think it’s essential to pick a shampoo that contains nourishing ingredients that can moisturize and restore your cat’s skin and coat.

    They leave your cat feeling clean and fresh rather than dry and flaky. Ingredients like coconut and oatmeal are great natural moisturizers that help your cat’s coat stay healthy.

    Cat with fleas
    Image By: Maja Marjanovic, Shutterstock

    Price to Product Ratio

    You might notice that some products are considerably more expensive than others, but you must also consider how much product comes in each bottle. Bottles of flea shampoo for cats range from 8 ounces to a gallon, though 12 and 16-ounce bottles are most common.

    When comparing the price of two flea shampoos, make sure you take the volume into account. If they’re priced similarly, but one bottle is 8 ounces, and the other is 16, you’re getting twice as much product for the same price in the 16-ounce bottle.



    There’s no shortage of flea-killing cat shampoos, and although some brands are more effective than others, we found three we recommend. As you’ve read in our reviews, our favorite is the SimpleSource’s Flea and Tick Cat Shampoo because it kills fleas, mosquitos, and ticks.

    For a more affordable formula, check out the Veterinary Formula Flea & Tick Shampoo which kills fleas and ticks on contact. Adams Plus Flea and Tick Shampoo is a bit pricier, but it also kills flea eggs and larvae and prevents a re-infestation for up to 28 days.

    See also:

    Featured Image Credit: KDdesignphoto, Shutterstock

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