Hair of the Dog
Good hair days ahead! Dog grooming tools matched to coat type
Though the pin brush (it looks a lot like a human paddle-style hairbrush) is the most commonly used grooming tool, it's actually not the most useful for all dogs. Different types of dogs have different types of hair and thus require different grooming tools—just reflect on the coat of a Weimeraner versus a Husky for a visual. Find out what you should be using on your dog with this at-a-glance guide to grooming tools.
A wide tooth comb is for finishing. Photo: Olexandr Taranukhin/Shutterstock
Slicker brush. This brush is the most versatile. It works on all coat types but is especially useful for removing mats in medium-to-long-haired and curly or wiry haired dogs. It features rows of angled, fine wire pins spaced closely together to remove loose fur and detangle.
We like the CONAIRPROPET Medium Slicker Brush, $11 on Amazon.
A slicker brush works for all coat types. Photo: tativophotos/Shutterstock
Rake. An undercoat rake resembles a pin brush, except it's pins are longer and fewer. It's designed to reach deep into fur of dogs with heavy double coats—Huskies and Malamutes, we're looking at you—and remove the excess undercoat.
Pin brush is a lot like the slicker brush but the pins are tipped in plastic or rubber. It's most useful for dogs with long, silky hair.
We like the Andis Pet Medium Pin Brush. It stimulates the skin and helps spread natural oils through the coat. $11, andis.com.
Bristle brush. If your dog has a short or wiry coat (hello, Vizsla), this is the brush for you. It removes lose fur, conditions the skin, and adds lustre to the coat.
De-shedder. If your dog sheds (Goldens, Labs…), you can likely use a de-shedding tool, though they work best for medium to long haired breeds with a thick undercoat, like the Newfoundland. Dogs with very short coats, like Italian Geryhounds, don’t need this tool.
A de-shedding tool easily and effectively removes excess undercoat. Photo: Konstantin Zaykov/Shutterstock
Flea combs should be in every dog owner’s arsenal and can be used on all coat types.