Having a dog in your home ensures you’ll always have love and companionship handy, as well as an endless source of entertainment.
Unfortunately, it also ensures everything you own will constantly be covered in dog hair.
The best way to solve that problem is by grooming your dog regularly, and a slicker brush is one of the best tools for the job. They’re not all created equal, however, and some can actually hurt your dog during the grooming process while others are completely ineffective.
We looked at some of the top options on the market today, and in the reviews below, we’ll reveal which ones made short, painless work of the dog hair problem, as well as which ones you’re better off skipping entirely.
Comparison Table (updated in 2020):
|Best Overall||Hertzko Self-cleaning||
|Best Value||FURminator Grooming||
|Premium Choice||Chris Christensen||
|Paw Brothers Hard Pin||
The 10 Best Dog Slicker Brushes Reviewed:
1. Hertzko Self Cleaning Slicker Brush – Best Overall
The Hertzko Self Cleaning has extremely fine wires that are bent at an angle, allowing them to dig deep into your pet’s coat to snag as much loose fur as possible. Despite their ability to penetrate deep into your dog’s hair, the wires are remarkably gentle, so your pooch shouldn’t get too stressed when he sees the brush come out.
One of the biggest selling points for this brush is right there in the name itself. It’s incredibly easy to clean, as there’s a button on the handle that makes the wires retract, causing the hair to fall right off. This is a huge time saver, as you don’t have to spend a lot of time picking out clumps of fur, and it even makes it easy to remove wet tangles.
However, the handle itself is a little cumbersome to hold, especially if you’re trying to wrangle an uncooperative dog with the other hand. You won’t have to hold it long, though, as the self-cleaning feature more than makes up for the hassle.
Once you’ve used the Hertzko Self Cleaning, you’ll wonder why you ever wasted so much time on old-fashioned brushes. It’s the clear choice for our #1 spot.
2. FURminator Grooming Slicker Brush – Best Value
The head of the FURminator 104008 is contoured to match the slope of your dog’s neck and back, enabling you to easily remove loose hair without having to tug or pull on his coat. By reducing pressure on the dog’s fur, you’re less likely to hurt him — and less likely to make him hate getting groomed.
The ergonomic handle makes it easy to hold, which also reduces the amount of force you’ll have to use during a session. That spares both your wrists and your dog’s skin.
It’s especially good for dogs with fine or wiry coats, as it can eliminate trouble spots without damaging the fur. Of course, that also implies its biggest weakness — it’s a little too flimsy for thick, curly-coated dogs.
It’s also a little difficult to clean, but you can’t really expect much more from this brush, given its bargain-basement price. It’s inexpensive enough that you could keep replacing it once it breaks or becomes too clogged to work, and it won’t make much of a dent in your bank account.
Due to its incredible value, the FURminator 104008 is, in our opinion, the best slicker brush for the money. It’s just not versatile enough to dethrone the Hertzko just yet.
If you show dogs for a living — or are just fanatical about having a clean, dog hair-free home — the Chris Christensen Big G is basically the Rolls Royce of slicker brushes. Like a Rolls Royce, though, it’s hard for the common man to justify purchasing it.
It’s not much to look at, which may surprise you, given its exorbitant price tag. However, the tines are extremely long and equally strong, and they’re bent in such a way as to ensure they snag as much loose hair on every pass as possible.
This can really cut down on the amount of time you spend grooming, as each pass is incredibly efficient. The long handle gives you plenty of comfortable ways to hold it as well, so you won’t have to spend a lot of time repositioning it.
However, it’s a little delicate, so don’t yank on it if you get snagged on a tangle. Also, while it is better than almost any wire brush on the market, the difference between it and the two brushes ranked above it is negligible. Again, unless you absolutely, positively have to hunt down every last strand of loose fur, you’re probably better off saving some money and buying the Hertzko or FURminator.
4. Li’l Pals Dog Slicker Brush
Many slicker brushes are too big to be used on puppies, and so grooming young dogs takes a lot of time and creative angling. The Li’l Pals W6202, on the other hand, is specifically designed for pups, so you can finally help him look his best without using a brush that’s way too big.
One of our favorite things about this brush is that it redistributes oils throughout your dog’s coat, so his skin should stay healthy and his fur should remain shiny and lustrous.
The pins all have plastic tips, making it unlikely you’ll hurt your pup while using it. In addition to making you feel better, that also makes it more likely he’ll be receptive to grooming once he’s fully grown.
The biggest negative we found with this brush is also the most obvious: unless he’s a toy breed, your puppy will outgrow it sooner rather than later. It’s also somewhat fragile, but that’s not a huge concern, given that it will have a short shelf life regardless.
Overall, the Li’l Pals W6202 is well-designed for a specific purpose, but that specificity prevents us from ranking it any higher than fourth.
5. Paw Brothers Hard Pin Slicker Brush
The Paw Brothers Hard Pin has a non-slip grip that makes it convenient for use at bath time, as you can maintain a grip on it even when your hands are slick with soap and water. However, you will pay the price for that to a certain extent, as it’s hard to clean under the best of conditions — and being filled with wet, matted fur hardly qualifies as “the best of conditions.”
The stainless steel pins are more than capable of standing up to a little harsh treatment, though, so don’t be afraid to really dig deep into your pup’s fur. Just be aware that they are a little rough, so try not to dig all the way down to his skin.
It’s best suited for dogs with thick, double coats, as it can cut through thick forests of fur with ease. Mutts with less fluff to work with are much more likely to get hurt accidentally, and that can make subsequent grooming sessions a nightmare.
Like the FURminator above, the Paw Brothers Hard Pin is very good for certain dogs; however, since it can cause pain when used on the wrong pooch, we knocked it down a few spots lower than the FURminator on this list.
6. Ruff ‘n Ruffus Self-Cleaning Slicker Brush
You get an entire grooming set with the Ruff ‘n Ruffuss Self-Cleaning brush, as it also comes with a steel comb and nail clippers. This drives up the price a bit, but all of the pieces are useful, so we can’t fault it too much for that.
What we can fault it for, however, is the fact that you have to hold the button on the handle down to keep the bristles extended. This is extremely inconvenient and places unnecessary strain on your wrist.
It’s also lightweight and flimsy, which is disappointing given the price. If you’re spending that much on a brush, you want it to last a long time, and this one likely won’t.
All that said, it’s still very good at removing mats and tangles, and remarkably easy to clean. There’s still some hair that sticks to it after you activate the self-cleaning feature, but that’s a minor annoyance at most.
If the Ruff ‘n Ruffus Self-Cleaning were a little less expensive, we’d have an easier time overlooking its faults. As it is, though, we can’t justify putting it any higher than this.
7. Safari Flexible Slicker Brush
The Safari Flexible looks and feels like a paint brush, and offers a similar level of flexibility. This lets you get into every nook and crevice on your dog, regardless of his size.
It has two sides, one that has soft bristles and the other with sturdier tines. This allows you to customize how firm of a grooming session you want to have, while also making it a good choice for multi-dog households.
It’s a little on the small side, though, so it may take longer to finish the job than some of the bigger options on this list. You may want to skip it entirely if you have a massive dog like a Great Dane or a Mastiff, in fact.
The fact that it’s double-sided is a neat little novelty, but that novelty wears off quickly, as it’s easy to use the wrong side by accident. This can keep sensitive dogs on edge, as they never know when they might get the hard bristles.
In fact, that sums up the Safari Flexible nicely: it’s a good idea, but the execution is lacking.
8. ConairPRO Dog Slicker Brush
The ConairPRO PRGDSSS has a unique oval head that lets it get into tight spaces well, and the memory foam handle is incredibly gentle on your hands. Past that, though, it’s a struggle to find much to recommend about this brush.
The bristles don’t have a lot of flex to them, and as a result, they have a nasty tendency to pull hair out. It doesn’t take more than a few instances of that to make your dog permanently skeptical of grooming. They also wear out quickly, so don’t expect this to last long.
The head is too small to use all over your dog’s body unless he’s a toy breed, so this is best suited for use around the face and armpits. That means you’ll need to buy a second slicker brush anyway, so you might as well get a more versatile one to start with.
The ConairPRO PGRDSSS may have some utility for professional groomers, but average dog owners will be better served to buy a better, more versatile brush from the get-go.
9. Miracle Care Pet Slicker Brush
Black and intimidating, the Miracle Care Pet looks more like a medieval torture device than a pet grooming product — and your dog may just feel like those comparisons are justified.
The bristles on this thing are extremely sharp — so much so that you can cut your finger on them. If you have a short-haired dog, this brush is almost guaranteed to cause some pain. The bristles have very little flex to them, so even if they don’t drag across your pup’s skin, they can still get snagged in his fur and hurt him that way.
Despite its fearsome appearance, it’s not very well put-together. The pad falls out easily, so you’ll have to constantly shove it back in, and the tines are prone to snapping.
Giving credit where it’s due, the Miracle Care Pet does do a good job of rounding up and removing loose fur. However, the pain it inflicts along the way is, in our opinion, much too high a price to pay.
10. Wahl 858407 Slicker Brush
The Wahl 858407 will give you one effective stroke in which it cleanly removes a large amount of hair. After that, however, you’ll spend most of your time trying to clean the thing (while also avoiding jabbing your fingers in the process).
The white rim around the bristles takes up a lot of space, so you’ll need to press down hard to maximize the amount of contact the tines have with your dog’s fur. Of course, this also increases the likelihood you’ll hurt your dog at the same time.
There’s a lot of wasted space on the head as well, so while it looks like a fairly large brush, there aren’t that many bristles on it. This makes it a poor choice for big jobs (and big dogs).
The good news about the Wahl 858407 is that it’s one of the cheapest brushes on the market. Then again, you get what you pay for.
The Hertzko Self Cleaning manages to be both gentle and effective and cleaning it couldn’t be easier. This eliminates one of the most annoying and time-consuming problems commonly found during grooming, creating a stress-free experience for you and your pet.
The FURminator 104008 is nearly as good as the Hertzko, and it’s incredibly inexpensive to boot. It requires little pressure to use, and its body is contoured to match your dog’s shape.
Buying a poor-quality slicker brush can hurt your dog and make him less likely to tolerate being groomed. We hope that our reviews have made it easier for you to find a brush that will get the job done quickly and painlessly, so that you can finally know what it’s like to live in a dog hair-free home.
- Comparison Table (updated in 2020):
- The 10 Best Dog Slicker Brushes Reviewed:
- 1. Hertzko Self Cleaning Slicker Brush – Best Overall
- 2. FURminator Grooming Slicker Brush – Best Value
- 3. Chris Christensen Big G Slicker Brush – Premium Choice
- 4. Li’l Pals Dog Slicker Brush
- 5. Paw Brothers Hard Pin Slicker Brush
- 6. Ruff ‘n Ruffus Self-Cleaning Slicker Brush
- 7. Safari Flexible Slicker Brush
- 8. ConairPRO Dog Slicker Brush
- 9. Miracle Care Pet Slicker Brush
- 10. Wahl 858407 Slicker Brush