Playful, loyal, intelligent and loving, poodles are a curious and sometimes mischievous breed. While excellent family dogs, poodles are high maintenance in the grooming department – despite being a non-shedding breed.
Every poodle owner should have a good set of clippers to keep their pup’s coat looking its best. How do you find the right clippers? We’ll share some tips and explain this breed’s unique grooming needs.
How to Care for a Poodle’s Coat
A poodle’s coat requires a lot of care. Their coats should be groomed every three to six weeks, but some need to be groomed more often.
Don’t let this turn you off. These dogs may require more frequent grooming, but keeping their coats looking healthy is very easy. In fact, this is one breed where shaving the coat is actually recommended.
What type of grooming needs to be done every three to six weeks?
Brushing should be done more often – about once a week. Poodle coats are prone to matting, so brushing at least once per week will help keep the coat tangle-free.
How to Brush a Poodle
To keep a poodle’s coat looking its best, you need two types of brushes: wide-tooth comb and a slicker brush.
- Divide your dog’s coat into sections, working on one at a time.
- Run the comb through each section, making sure that you comb all the way to the skin.
- Work on one leg at a time, then move onto the topknot and ears.
- When brushing, start at the tips and work down to the skin.
When you’re done going over the coat with a comb, go back over it again with a slicker brush to remove any last tangles or loose hairs.
Be careful when using the slicker brush. If you don’t use it properly, you may hurt your dog. Hold your pup’s hair up and away from the skin (your fingers should be right below where you want to start brushing). This will keep the hair from pulling and causing discomfort.
Don’t push too hard with the slicker brush. The pin-like bristles may irritate or hurt your dog’s skin.
Never brush a poodle’s coat when it’s dry, as static can cause the ends to break.
Brushing should always be done before bathing. Otherwise, your pup’s coat may turn to felt.
It cannot be stressed enough how important it is to brush a poodle’s coat often – once a day if you can (once a week is fine if you can’t). Remember, these dogs don’t shed. This means that loose hairs collect in the poodle’s coat. If you don’t brush the coat often, those loose hairs will build up and cause matting.
Matting can happen quickly with a poodle. Regular brushing will help keep mats under control.
Along with a good set of brushes, you also want to make sure you have the following grooming tools:
- Quality Shampoo
- Quality Conditioner
- Finishing Spray
Conditioner should be applied to your pup’s coat regularly to keep its fur hydrated, soft and free of tangles.
Many poodle owners bring their pups to the groomer once a month for a trim and bath. But if you have the time and patience, you can give your poodle a trim yourself. To do this, you’ll need a good pair of clippers and scissors.
How to Find the Best Clippers for Poodles
Most high quality clippers will do a good job of trimming a poodle’s coat. But there are a few things you should consider when choosing a model for your pup:
Are the clippers powerful enough to trim your dog’s coat? How much power you need will really depend on the length and thickness of your dog’s coat.
If you prefer to keep your dog’s coat long, you may want to choose clippers that have two speeds. The higher speed will cut through longer hair with ease.
Corded or Cordless
Clippers come in both corded and cordless models. Cordless clippers are convenient because you have complete freedom to trim and move wherever you want.
But here’s the thing with cordless clippers: they usually aren’t as powerful as a corded model.
If you keep your dog’s coat short, power may not be an issue. But if you keep your poodle’s coat long or like to style it different ways, you may want to go with the more powerful corded clipper.
Noise Level and Comfort
Poodles are generally more tolerant of clippers than other breeds, and that’s probably because they’re exposed to them at an early age. Still, quiet clippers will make the grooming session more comfortable for both you and your pup.
Some brands use special types of motors that don’t require fans or vents. These clippers are usually quieter than competing models.
Along with the noise level, you also want to consider comfort. Do the clippers have an ergonomic design or comfort grip? Do they slip out of your hands easily? It’s worth it to invest in clippers that are comfortable to hold.
Depending on your poodle’s coat style, different types of combs and comb guides may be used during each grooming session. Make sure that the clippers you choose have an easy-to-change blade system so that you don’t waste time moving from one blade to the next.
If you like your pup’s coat a particular length, you can use comb guides for precision length. These guides prevent you from cutting too closely to your poodle’s skin.
Power, noise level, cords and blade system – these are the most important things to consider when buying clippers for your poodle. Professional-quality clippers are usually the best option. Because the poodle is such a high maintenance dog, it’s worth the cost to invest in more expensive, high-quality clippers that can stand up to heavy use. If you base your decision on price alone, you may wind up spending more in the long run because you’ll be constantly buying new clippers.
Regardless of which clippers you use, make sure that you make each grooming session fun, positive and rewarding for your dog.