Grooming at home? Here’s some safety tips!
As an experienced pet groomer, I’ve talked with tons of people about taking care of their furbaby’s haircut at home. I’ve been in this position before where it doesn’t seem so hard until you’re elbow deep in hair and it just looks awful or you don’t feel safe finishing what you’ve started. You’re not alone! It’s not so easy when you have a long haired or fluffy haired pup. Let me give you some safety tips if you’re looking to try this at home.
Make sure you have the right tools for the job! ✂️
First and foremost, make sure you have the right tools to keep your pets safe and looking sharp. A majority of first-time DIY home grooming goes wrong when folks try to use household scissors and clippers.
The buzz about Clippers
There are several good options to choose from and we worked really hard to include a broad range of budgets, which is especially important these days.
Top Pick: Andis AGC 2speed.
A good reliable set of clippers for home use that I always recommend is the Andis AGC 2 speed. It provides two speed options that you need to get throught most coats. Unlike people hair, dog hair is thicker and take way more power. These Andis clippers provide power and reliability that will last you a little longer than cheaper options.
Budget Pick: Andis EasyClip Pro-Animal
These clippers come in under $100 at the time of writing this article, which make them quite a bit more affordable. You'll pay for the cheaper option as it only has one speed option, which means you may have to take multiple passes on the pet's coat, sorta like cheaper paint requires multiple layers. The best thing about these is that they don't get as hot as other models.
Accessories Might be Included
Some two speed clippers come with their own set blades that are built in and some come with detachable blades. Most of the time these blades are sharp and can be used straight out of the box and other times you’ll need a blade sharpener. It’s very important that your blades be sharp, dull blades will pull or fold the hair and they will not do a good job making the groom painful for both you and your pet.
Nearly all clippers will come with a minimum of a #10 blade and clipper oil. There are several sizes of blades to choose from ranging from a #10 that is perfect for the matted pet to a #3 that is for fluffier coats with no matting. There are guards that can be used over your #10 blade for an even longer coat look.
Safety Warning: Watch for Heat
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Surely you'll need Shears
Lastly, you will need a few different types of shears, depending on your pet's breed. It can be very overwhelming as they come in a wide variety of shapes, sizes, and price points. To keep things relatively simple, just focus on these types:
- Curved shears with a ball tip
- Thinning Shears
- Straight Shears with a ball tip
I can't recommend getting shears with a ball tip enough for people new to grooming and especially for those with a wiggly pet. For sizing pick what matches your hand size and would feel comfortable. I personally have tiny hands, so I tend to use smaller shears unless it’s a large breed then I’ll pull out my 7-8” shears. I call them my swords 😂.
Top Picks: <name>, <name>, <name>
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Budget Picks: <name>, <name>, <name>
blerb about why these are okay for the price, but talk about the problems you'll run into,
Now that you have your tools ready and sharp you’ll need a safe place to groom your future fancy pet. If you don’t have a pet grooming table you can use a kitchen table or coffee table as long as you have a helper to hold your pup as still as possible and to comfort them while you work. Pets do best on a surface that isn’t for cuddles or play time.
When working with your clippers always hold them like a pencil closer to the blade. This will help you have better control of them. Safety with clippers means you’ll never cut across the rectum, on the edges of ears or down the tuck-up area. This will cause serious injury to your pet with any blade. There are many very helpful grooming videos on learn2groomdogs.com that make this groom a safe groom.
When it comes to your shears it’s good to take some time getting used to holding them. Most everyone I’ve taught holds them like kitchen shears and let me tell you it’s harder on your hands that way! They should be held with your thumb and ring finger and your pinky as a support. Strange as it sounds I promise it will help you with a beautiful finishing look. It’s important to know here that your shears should never be pointed at the pet, always have good control of each body part while you’re cutting, never cut across the pads of the feet and don’t cut mats anywhere with shears. For the safety of your pet be sure to always use a #10 for any mats. There are some other options on mating and I will make a whole other blog for that😃.
Still need helps with your Pet Grooming?
Taking in all this information and planning this many purchases can be a lot to take in. I’m sure you've got a ton of other questions as well. I always want you to be safe with your pets, so if there are any questions you have about how to safely cut your pets hair please call us at Pawlush! XOXO
If you're located in Oklahoma: you can book a Pet's Grooming directly with the Pawlush team to ensure your pets are well cared for.