The Best Dog Clippers and How to Use Them
If you have a dog, you at some point have likely thought about trimming your pet either professionally or at home with your scissors or buzzer. It’s summertime and your long-haired pooch needs a cut, or their fur consistently gets matted with mud, or whatever the reason—I’m going to tell you why you should invest in professional dog clippers to use at home.
Why purchase dog clippers?
Grooming your pet is important for a variety of reasons. If you maintain their fur, it will be easier for you to detect any medical problems later on—for example if they get a wound, or you want to be able to regularly check eyes, ears, and teeth. Trimming fur can help reduce the chance of ticks, and reduce uncomfortable hair matting that may be pulling on the dogs’ skin.
What factors go into choosing the right pet clipper?
These are the important considerations when looking for Best Dog Clippers for your dog.
Motor power: The stronger the power of the motor, the higher the RPM—but that usually means more heat, noise, and vibration (see below) coming from the clipper. Thicker coats need more power, but lower power works fine for pets with short, thin coats.
Brushed or Brushless Motor: Without delving into the technical aspects of the motor design, brushed motors are lower cost but can be less efficient, noisier, and heat up fast due to friction. Brushless motors lack friction thus they have an extremely long lifespan and are very efficient but cost much more.
Heat, Noise, and Vibration: These three things increase directly as motor power increases. The faster the RPM, the more friction between the blade and device causing it to heat up. The powerful motor also accounts for a louder buzzing sound and vibrations through the device as you use it. Some dogs are unbothered by the noise and vibration, where others are a bit more skittish. You will have to make the best decision based on your pets.
Size, Weight, and Ergonomics: Most clippers are easy to hold and maneuver now—however some are lighter than others. Lighter clippers are easier to hold and in helping to prevent fatigue, but often are so light that you can feel the vibrations even more. If you have a large dog or plan to be grooming for a long time, look for something with good grip or handles.
Corded or Cordless: Corded limit mobility but provide higher power, work on longer/coarser hair, and have higher RPM. Cordless increase mobility but you will need to charge the battery regularly and the motor in these are slower so they only work on softer fur.
Blades: Most pet trimmers have interchangeable blades and sizes though most often the blades for a trimmer are only adaptable for that brand. Each blade finish has its’ own perks—ceramic edge blades are very popular because they do not heat up as much and can be good for grooming over long periods of time. Carbon edge blades provide a clean finish, good for grooming with style or show in mind. Blades made with silver serve anti-bacterial purposes and can be helpful if you are grooming out of necessity perhaps due to an injury or consistently dirty coat. Chrome finished blades prevent rust and may be more suitable for ones’ lifestyle.
Price: You get what you pay for in many respects. Cheap clippers heat up quickly, and break even faster making them good for only a few uses. They can produce uneven cuts and stop get stuck in longer coats. Professional clippers, or at least ones from reputable companies as listed below, are more durable, powerful, and safe for your pets!
What brands make the best dog clippers?
Wahl: Founded in 1911, they first branched in the pet industry in 1966. Since then they have made a dozen pet clippers each with unique features like lithium batteries, brushless motors, speed control, and cordless options. Their website also includes the ability to get specific information about grooming your dog based on their breed, coat type, coat length, and size.
Oster: “Keeping pets clean, healthy, and happy.” This brand, started in 1924 making men’s hair clippers, now is a division of a large corporation making pet trimmers. They offer a plethora of trimmers to choose from, all with different capabilities, blade sizes, and comb attachments.
What accessories or add-ons might you need?
Oils: Provided oils with the kit, or through the company of your trimmer are best to use to help maintain the blade of your tool. It reduces the friction within the blade which thus limits the heat production, which makes your pet more comfortable.
Combs: Some trimmers come with combs, some are sold separately. They are best for doing touch ups and can be cheaper than buying different sized blades. Make sure to research the size of the hair you plan on trimming to see if the comb will move smoothly through the coat.
How do you use dog clippers?
First, wash your dog and comb their fur out as much as possible. This may be easy for some, and difficult for others, just do your best. You want to make sure you remove as much matting and knots so that the clipper doesn’t snag. If someone is around to help, you can have them restrain and comfort the dog as you start. Begin at the back of their neck and, moving in the direction of the hair, move down their body towards their rear end. Once you finish their back, trim down their hind legs and then front legs. If you have a helper, see if you can position your dog to stand so that you can trim their stomach (you can go against the grain on their stomach). If you have a longer comb, switch to that for the face and paws to trim longer hairs. If you don’t have a longer comb, you can still use your clippers, just be very careful not to cut off their whiskers. Congratulation