We all love our furry friends. But when they start to turn into our shaggy, matted friends it’s time for a grooming intervention.
These days, some pet owners are choosing to groom at home because of social distancing. Other people may be looking to save a little money.
But whether you decide to clip your dog’s coat on a regular or only occasional basis, having your own grooming kit definitely comes in handy, especially if your best friend takes a roll in the grass and ends up with something like chewing gum or stickers in their coat.
Instead of rushing to your professional dog groomer for an emergency session, you can just re-style your pooch in your very own doggy beauty salon. (And by the way, human clippers will literally not cut it in this instance. Because they’re made for much finer hair, they get clogged when used on canines.)
To keep your pet looking sharp, we’ve rounded up the 6 best at-home dog grooming kits.
But first, let’s go over what you should look for when buying any pair of dog clippers.
What To Look For In Doggy Clippers
Noise and Vibration Level
Is your dog scared by loud sounds?
In that case, you’ll want to pick a pair of hair clippers that are designed to run with less noise and vibration. It will make your grooming session easier on your dog and also on you!
Many clippers come with attachments for all lengths of dog hair, but not all. If your pup has longer hair, make sure the kit you choose will accommodate his more luscious locks.
Faster and more powerful clippers are better for cutting through thicker or longer hair, but they also heat up faster, making some dogs uncomfortable. If your dog has shorter hair, a pair of low power clippers will work fine.
If your dog has thicker or longer hair, a pair of high powered clippers may be a worthwhile investment.
One Speed or Variable Speeds
One-speed clippers are definitely lighter and easier to maneuver. But if you have dogs with both shorter and longer hair lengths, you may want a clipper with variable speeds.
Just be aware it will heat up faster at the higher speed.
Cord or Cordless Dog Clippers?
If your pet is kind of squirmy or you plan to groom outside, a pair of cordless clippers may be the best choice for you. However, the battery will need to be recharged, and cordless clippers are usually a little slower.
If you have a well-behaved pet or are planning to leash your dog while grooming, corded clippers will give you a little more power, and you won’t have to worry about recharging.
In the end, either option will work. What’s best depends on your dog and where you plan to groom.
While some brands of dog clippers can be used with widely available interchangeable blades, some of the top brands can only be used with blades from that specific manufacturer. The first option does tend to keep the price down a bit if you’re on a budget.
Ceramic blades are also the most recommended because they don’t heat up as much. But they also happen to be the most expensive.
Stainless steel and titanium will work just fine, but they do heat up faster. If you have a pooch with sensitive skin, you may want to pay a little extra and get the ceramic blades.
Best Dog Clippers for Grooming a Home
Now that you know what to look for in a dog clipper, here are some of the best models for at-home groomers.
Best Cordless/Beginner Clipper - Wahl Professional Animal Bravura Corded/Cordless Clipper Kit
Lightweight, quiet and easy to maneuver, this 1-speed cordless pet clipper from Wahl is an excellent choice for beginners. Its lithium-ion battery provides more power than regular batteries, and its blade does not overheat.
Why you’ll like it:
- 5-in-1 blade technology keeps it cool
- Battery runs for 90 minutes
- Rechargeable lithium-ion battery that is fully charged in 60 minutes
- Provides a smooth, quiet trim
- Compact size and lightweight put less pressure on your hands and wrists
- Intelligent motor increases power through thicker coats
Best Budget Clipper - Wahl Professional Animal U-Clip Clipper & Grooming Kit
This economical clipper from the trusted Wahl brand works best for dogs with light and easy coats to trim. Featuring a motor with 7,200 strokes per minute, it will definitely get the job done.
Just be aware that it’s a noisier and heavier model that vibrates quite a bit. So if you have a small dog or one that scares easily, this may not be the clipper kit for you.
Why you’ll like it:
- Reliable and economical
- Standard adjustable blades for clipping and trimming
- Kit includes 9 different grooming tools, including 4 guide combs
- Operates smoothly for non-frequent cuts
- 2-year warranty and 30-day satisfaction guarantee
Best Compact Clipper - Wahl Professional Animal BravaMini+
At only 4.5 ounces, this mini clipper provides a lot of power (5,350 strokes per minute) with very little noise. So if you have a small or especially nervous dog, these clippers are a great option for removing pet hair with low noise.
Why you’ll like it:
- Compact and Lightweight
- Extremely quiet
- 100 minutes of cordless operation
- Smart design keeps it cooler for longer
- Economical price
Best Value For Money Clipper - Oster Pet Clippers A5 2-Speed Animal Grooming Clipper With Detachable Cryogen-X #10 Blade
This Oster corded clipper has a powerful 2-speed motor that will work for all of your dog’s grooming needs and is also quite durable for the price. The detachable Cryogen-X blade also makes it one of the more precise clippers you can find.
The low-speed shaver is quiet and works great around the face and other sensitive areas. Need more power? Kick it up to high speed to clip heavy or matted coats.
Why you’ll like it:
- Powerful, 2-speed motor cover all your needs
- Runs smoothly to protects dogs’ sensitive skin
- Works for general grooming and precision clipping of sensitive areas
- Long-lasting Cryogen blades
- Detachable blade system makes blade changing easy
Best Variable Speed Clipper - Andis Excel Pro-Animal 5-Speed Detachable Blade Clipper
Because of its 5-speed motor and precision ceramic blade, this premium dog hair clipper can be used on all breeds and coat lengths. If your dog is sensitive to vibrations, you can use the lower and softer settings. The higher speeds vibrate somewhat more but are great for clipping thicker hair.
Why you’ll like it:
- 5 speeds meet all your grooming needs
- Ceramic blades run cooler and last longer
- Good for trimming thick and matted hair
- Soft-grip, anti-slip housing for comfort and safety
- New design keeps clipper cooler for longer
Best Professional Grade Clipper - Andis UltraEdge Super 2-Speed Detachable Blade Clipper
This professional-grade heavy-duty clipper comes with a price tag even higher than the Andis, Excel 5-speed. But if you have more than one animal or plan to do all of your grooming at home, it does give a lot of bang for your buck.
The powerful two-speed motor hair trimmer can work on all breeds and coats. But one of its most important features is how quietly and cooly it runs. So if your dog is a nervous nelly when it comes to grooming, this clipper is a great choice.
Why you’ll like it:
- Powerful 2-speed motor
- Works for all breed and coats
- Runs quietly and cooly
- Shatter-proof housing make it especially durable
- Features a 14-foot cord
- Detachable blade and drive cap for easy cleaning
- Comes with a tube of blade oil and extra blade drive
If you’ve decided to invest in a clipper to groom your dog at home, maintaining it is vital to keep it running smoothly and help it last longer.
All dog clipper blades require regular cleaning, oiling and sharpening. This will extend the life of the blades and also prevent you from nicking your pet’s skin (which is a common sign of dull blades).
After every grooming session, be sure to remove all hair from the clipper.
Next, rinse, dry and oil the blades. Be sure to consult your manufacturer’s guide when it comes to cleaning and oiling your device. Many manufacturers have their own maintenance kits, which may be preferable to buying other products.
If you notice your clippers aren’t cutting well or your dog’s skin is getting nicked, it’s time to sharpen up those blades. Again, be sure to consult the manufacturer’s guide for specific instructions.
Ceramic and titanium blades will stay sharper longer than stainless steel blades. So if you want a clipper that’s lower maintenance, that’s an important thing to consider when buying one.
If you buy a quality dog clipper (anywhere from $150 to $3,000), you should be able to expect a lifespan of at least two to three years. But that will depend on how often you use it and how well you maintain it.
A Few Tips For Clipping Your Dog’s Fur
Obviously, one of the most important factors for clipping your dog’s fur is having the right equipment. A quality, well-maintained pet grooming clipper will cut your dog’s hair smoothly and avoid painful nicks.
Jeff Carbridge, a consultant for Dog Owner and professional dog trainer, also adds that grooming will “help decrease the amount of hair that they shed through your home.”
Cambridge continues, “Grooming is good for coat health, keeping it silky smooth to touch as well as making it nice and soft. It boosts the health of the hair follicles and keeps them fresh as you remove the loose and dead hairs in their coat.”
Once you’ve chosen a clipper, here are a few other tips to keep in mind when grooming your best friend at home.
1. Groom Regularly
Some dog breeds can develop painful matts in their fur if they’re not combed and clipped regularly. Grooming on a regular basis will make the process easier for your dog and easier for you.
Waiting to groom your dog until they have long hair can be a challenge for you and your dog could become impatient very quickly. If you wait too long we suggest using some grooming scissors to get out any mats or long hair before you use any dog grooming clippers. This will save you and your pooch a headache.
2. Be Patient (and give treats)
Grooming is an awesome way to bond with your dog, but you and your best friend may need time to adjust to the process. Never forcefully restrain or yell at your dog.
Remember, dogs pick up on stress, so if you stay calm, they will also help your pet keep their cool. A little cuddling and a few treats also go a long way!
3. Brush, Bath and Dry Your Dog Before Clipping
Clippers work best on clean, brushed hair. Before bathing your dog, comb them with a cleaning brush and try to remove any knots or matting.
Next, bath your pet with dog shampoo to protect their sensitive skin. Then dry your dog’s hair and comb out any remaining knots.
4. Clip In the Direction of the Hair
To keep your furry friend looking sharp, always trim in the direction that the hair is running. Also, it’s very important to keep the clipper parallel to the skin to avoid painful nicks and cuts. The first few times, you will definitely notice some spots, so be prepared for touch-up work.
5. Be Careful Around Sensitive Areas
You should always take your time when using a clipper and be especially careful around sensitive areas like the underbelly, private parts, underarms, hocks and face.
6. Careful of Overheating
As mentioned, some dog clipper’s run hotter than others. Stay aware of the clippers temperature to avoid burns.
7. Pay Attention to Your Pet’s Mood Before and During the Process
If your dog is the hyper-type or just feeling nervous, a little exercise before your at-home grooming date could help calm him down.
If you find your pet is especially skittish at any time in the process, remember to stay calm. A little cuddling, reassuring and a treat can make the process go a lot smoother.
For even further details on grooming your pet, watch this helpful video:
Shiny, Happy Dogs and People
With a little love, patience and the right equipment, you can skip trips to the groomer and beautify your best friend at home.
Before buying your pet grooming kit, consider factors like your dog's hair thickness and length and sensitivity to noise and vibration.
Remember, a quality trimmer or professional pet clipper will last longer and should help prevent painful nicks and cuts.
Be patient with your pooch and yourself as you start your journey grooming together.
If you are feeling really brave, it might be worth investing in a quality pair of nail clippers too while you are at it. If nail clippers seem a bit too much, you can always grab a nail grinder or nail file, so their paws look extra fresh after their haircut.
Though you may need time to adjust to the process, you’ll soon have your best friend looking and feeling great!
You might also be interested in: The 9 Best Grain-Free Dog Foods
The 6 Best At-Home Dog Grooming Kits:
- Best Cordless/Beginner Clipper - Wahl Professional Animal Bravura Corded/Cordless Clipper Kit
- Best Budget Clipper - Wahl Professional Animal U-Clip Clipper & Grooming Kit
- Best Compact Clipper - Wahl Professional Animal BravaMini+
- Best Value For Money Clipper - Oster Pet Clippers A5 2-Speed Animal Grooming Clipper With Detachable Cryogen-X #10 Blade
- Best Variable Speed Clipper - Andis Excel Pro-Animal 5-Speed Detachable Blade Clipper
- Best Professional Grade Clipper - Andis UltraEdge Super 2-Speed Detachable Blade Clipper