For most dogs, the grooming kit starts with a comb and a brush. The ones you choose depends on your pet’s coat type. The ones you choose depends on your pet’s coat type. If you bought your puppy or dog from a reputable breeder, you should be able to ask for equipment recommendations and grooming advice.
If not, here are the basic coat types and the comb or brush best suited. Remember, these are recommendations to keep coat in “pet shape”; show grooming is considerably more involved and requires a lot more equipment. Here are what you need to do for different types of coats:
1. Short, smooth coats. (Labs, Pugs, Rottweilers). You can either run a comb through to catch the shedding hairs or use a grooming glove, a tool you slip your hand into and run over your dog. It’s like petting, and dogs love it!
2. Curly coats. (Poodles, Portuguese water dogs, the softer terriers) Clipping is part of the regimen for these breeds. If you want to do the clipping yourself, you need an instruction book and a basic clipper set with a couple of blades. For daily grooming, a medium metal brush keeps tangles at bay. Follow by brushing with a slicker brush.
3. Medium coats. (Golden Retrievers, Australian Shepherds) A medium steel comb and natural-bristle brush keeps these coats in fine shape.
4. Long and silky coats. (Afghan Hound, Yorkshire Terrier, Maltese) Use a medium steel comb and a natural bristle brush, gently, to keep these glamorous coats from breaking.
5. Wiry coats. (Most Terriers, Schnauzers, wire-haired hunting dogs) A medium comb and a slicker brush gets the dirt out. Terriers need to be clipped every two months to get rid of dead hairs and maintain their smart appearance, and if you’re going to do this yourself, you’ll need clippers. (For show, terriers are stripped, a laborious task involving plucking out dead and dying hairs.)
6. Long and double coated. (Shetland Sheepdogs, Collies, Keeshouden, Alaskan Malamutes, Pomeranians). Wide toothed steel “collie comb” natural bristle brush, dematting tool. Bred to thrive in the coldest weather, these breeds shed plenty and require a lot of grooming. A thorough brushing against the grain and down to the skin keeps the downy under-coat from matting into a block of felt.
While daily coat care, brushing and combing, is the owner’s responsibility, a groomer can help keep your dog’s coat in good shape, especially if you’ve got a terrier or poodle-type dog.
Dogs For Dummies by Gina Spadafori