Being a dog owner means caring for your four-legged friend in every way: walking, feeding, petting, plating, and grooming them. While all dog breeds need grooming to a certain degree, there are specific breeds that need extra maintenance. This usually means two things: either you do it yourself or take your dog to a groomer.
The advantage of grooming your dog at home is that you save both money and time, but you need some special tools. Searching for a good grooming kit usually takes time. That’s why I’m here. I’ve rounded up some of the best tools so you can groom your pet yourself or simply touch up their lovely coat in-between groomer visits.
Keep in mind that grooming can help your dog stay healthy, so it’s important not to skip it for a very long time. Also, each dog breed has a different coat type, so make sure you choose the tools that work best for your furry friend. Without further ado, here are some options to choose from!
1. Hartz Combo Brush
Featuring two brush styles and a nonslip handle, this versatile tool is perfect for dogs with many different coat types. Basically, the Hartz Combo Brush is two brushes in one: a soft-bristle brush and a pin brush. The pin side is great for brushing out tangles and removing loose hair. The bristle side works great for short-haired dogs such as pit bulls, Chihuahuas, and Dachshunds.
This tool is really life-saving, especially if you have two furry friends with different types of coats. I tested it on a Labrador retriever and a miniature poodle. While I only found the pink brush side useful for the poodle coat, when I groomed my Labrador, I used both sides of the Harts Combo Brush. However, this brush may be too large for toy dogs.
The tool is lightweight yet sturdy and very comfortable to hold. I like the fact that the stainless steel pins have safety tips, which makes the grooming process more gentle. Also, the nylon bristles are soft yet stiff enough to do some good hair removal.
Hartz also provides a satisfaction guarantee on all its tools if they haven’t been abused or misused.
2. Furminator Undercoat Deshedding Tool
Deshedding tools have one purpose: to help you get rid of as much loose hair from your four-legged friend’s coat as possible—before it ends up on your clothes and everywhere in your house. Even though designs vary, de-shedding tools often look like fine-tooth combs or metal rakes.
Furminator Undercoat Deshedding Tool effectively and safely removes loose, dead undercoat hair as well as debris and dirt. Believe me, once you buy it, it will become your best friend—well, your second best friend since your dog probably ranks No. 1.
Since I have a Labrador retriever, I got to test this tool on him. The amount of hair I was able to remove from his coat was astonishing. It definitely was far more than I could remove with any other de-shedding tool I’d tested before. However, this tool isn’t for use on nonshedding breeds.
The magic is in the stainless steel edge that reaches through the topcoat to easily and safely remove the undercoat and loose hair without damaging the topcoat. The skin guard and the curved edge of the blade help the tool glide over the dog’s body so it doesn’t dig into the skin.
The Furminator’s ergonomic handle offers a comfortable grip, and its release button makes it easy to collect the hair you removed. The tool features a special edge guard that protects the metal teeth, so you’ll be able to safely put it away after use.
3. JW Pet Gripsoft Soft Slicker Brush
This grooming tool’s flexible, angled stainless steel bristles reduce the risk of skin irritation while collecting loose hair. It’s specially created for furry friends with sensitive skin, as the rubberized grips and curved handle provide control and comfort.
With very thin, closely set wire bristles, the JW Pet Gripsoft Soft Slicker Brush is great for general brushing and removing loose fur. Experts recommend this slicker brush for long-haired dogs and double-coated shedding pets like golden retrievers, German shepherds, and Siberian huskies. However, they advise against using this tool on a short-haired pet as it can cause brush burn.
According to the product’s reviews on Amazon, this tool is stiff enough to untangle the coat yet gentle enough on the skin. With its bristles turned 90 degrees away from your pet’s skin, it minimizes “raking,” making grooming more comfortable for your furry friend.
I tested this brush on a Labrador retriever with medium-length hair and a poodle with a long, curly coat. Although they are different breeds with different coats, the tool worked well on both types. I made sure to test the brush beforehand by running it along the inside of my forearm, and I can tell you it felt comfortable. The tool is very gentle on the skin.
4. Chris Christensen Oval Pin Brush
For furry friends with medium to long hair, a pin brush is a great option for detangling and removing loose hair. This type of brush comes with metal pins that are more widely spaced compared with the bristles of a slicker brush, preventing hair breakage.
Also, the pins are set into a rubber cushion, and a high-quality grooming brush will always have pins with rounded ends to minimize skin irritation and prevent scratches on the skin.
I’ve used several grooming brushes from this brand over the years, thanks to my poodle breeder, who recommended them. So far, the Oval Pin Brush is my favorite, living up to the standard I’ve come to expect from the brand’s products.
The easy-grip handle and wooden body are made from lightweight, solid beech, making the brush comfortable to hold. There are three different types of brushes available: one with 20mm pins for short coats, one with 27mm pins for medium to long coats, and one with 35mm pins for long, thick full coats.
5. Bissell Pet Hair Eraser Grooming Gloves
This grooming glove is life-saving! It whisks away shedding hair efficiently as you give your furry friend a gentle massage. If you have a dog that tends to run away when you bring out the grooming brush, this tool is the way to go!
Basically, you’ll be able to brush your four-legged companion by petting them, and most of them love the soothing massage this provides. I used this grooming glove on my Labrador, who isn’t very fond of being brushed. Not only does the glove remove a lot of loose hair, but he lays down on his side and is actually happy to let me continue brushing all over his body.
The five-finger design allows you to brush all over, including the head, face, tails, and legs, while the soft rubber nodules gently collect fur. The Velcro wrist straps help keep the glove secure on your hand. For best results, aim to brush in the direction of hair growth.
After brushing your dog, simply peel the hair off to clean the glove. I’ve found that it’s easier to remove the hair when the glove is full. And before you ask, yes, the glove comes in three sizes: medium, large, and extra-large.
6. Bodhi Dog Bath Brush
This type of brush is also called a curry comb and is made of soft plastic or rubber. It has flexible nubs that remove loose hair and dirt from the coat. This grooming tool is also great in the bath, as it can help you work shampoo deep into the coat, giving your dog a nice massage.
But this easy-to-grip brush can also be used for dry brushing and is best for furry friends with smooth or short coats. Again, I had my Labrador retriever to test this grooming brush on, and I have to say it does a wonderful job on his medium-length coat.
I especially like how the strap makes it pretty easy to hold the brush even when wet (although it can still get slippery when wet; this happened to me just a few times compared with other bath brush brands).
When using it for dry brushing, the soft, split-ended rubber tips loosen and remove shedding hair and dirt in a very gentle way. What I also like about this brush is that, when used in the bath, it increases the effectiveness of shampoo, helping me to deep clean my dog’s fur—and he gets a nice massage as well, which is a plus.
You may also want to read 7 Amazing Tips to Take Care of Your Dog’s Teeth Like a Pro.