If you have a dog that needs groomed, take heart. While many people pay others to groom their pooches, you can do it yourself armed with a little know-how and some specialized equipment. Whether you just want to dip your toe into the grooming waters by brushing your dog and clipping its nails, or you intend to do the full grooming job, these tools will make your the tasks a little easier.


This self-cleaning slicker brush is designed to get mats out of your dog’s hair with minimal effort. Hertzko

If many dog owners would brush their dog’s hair a little each day, they might not need to have their pet groomed as often. Matted, disheveled fur gives the impression the dog needs a professional touch-up job, but really all it needs is a good bath and some daily attention with a brush. Brushes come in many types, all with specific uses. They include slicker brushes, which remove loose fur and help detangle; pin brushes, which have longer pins tipped with plastic or rubber and are made for longer coat types; bristle brushes, which are great for dogs with shorter coats; and shedding blades, which aren’t really brushes but horseshoe-shaped combs with small teeth designed to remove fur. You can also use some specialized brushes for a combination of these purposes.

Nail Trimmers

This two-speed nail grinder is easy to use and painless for your dog. Casfuy

Regularly trimming your dog’s nails isn’t just a matter of hygiene and appearance. The truth is that long, untrimmed nails can do serious damage to your dog—along with your floors. When nails are long enough to continually touch the ground, they push back into the nail bed, which is painful to the dog and puts pressure on the toe joint. In the long run, these untrimmed nails can cause problems with the foreleg joints and make the dog’s foot appear flattened. In a nutshell, if you can hear your dog coming across a hard floor by its nails clicking, they need trimmed. Trimming nails isn’t hard with either a trimmer or a nail sander. Simply cut them or sand them without getting all the way down to the quick. That will make the nails healthier and more attractive without causing pain to your pooch.

Grooming Kits

This portable all-in-one grooming system can be used anywhere in the house with minimal mess. Bissell

For those who want to take the leap past coat maintenance and nail care and groom their dog from head to toe, several different companies offer kits that provide everything needed to get started. Most include brushes, combs, shedding combs, clippers, nail clippers and various other tools necessary for doing the job, along with accessories for keeping the clippers cleaned, lubed, and in good shape. Some grooming kits even include complete bathing systems that allow you to give your dog a bath without doing it the old-fashioned way in a sink or shower. These make the job of bathing a dog easier than it has ever been.