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Monday, December 7, 2009

U Groom self cleaning slicker brush

A Pin Brush by any other name is still a pin brush!

Over the summer Peter and I attended a dog show at the Bloomsburg fairgrounds, the same dog show in fact where I bought my lawn carpet that I used for the dogs during fair week. I also bought a retractable pin brush for ten dollars. The gentleman who sold it to me did not have one available made for giant breed dogs which probably means it would just be a little bigger than the one I ended up getting and cost about five dollars more. Now for those of you who use a pin or slicker brush you know how much it hurts when you go to clean the brush and one of the pins gets stuck under your fingernail. I liken it to the annoying but still very sore for days, paper cut which I am sure everyone has had. Sometimes the pins are bent the wrong way from over use and sometimes they just fall out of the brush totally sticking under you nail or in your skin when you try to break the dog’s hair free of it. Eventually once it is that worn you need to throw it out before the dog gets hurt as well.

The retractable pin brush was made to alleviate the sore fingers and hands buy the press of a button which pulls the pins into a plastic compartment and the hair falls freely into the trash as there is nothing holding it to the brush. Is it worth the ten dollars? Well, as stated, I got the brush made for a medium to large dog, not one made for gargantuan dogs with two and three layers of very thick fur, however no matter the size in width of a pin brush, a good one will still get through layers of hair. I first tried it on my Newfoundland Chance, and a hairy fellow he is! While it got the hair on the outer coat alright, it did very little for the undercoat, certainly it did not get deeper than my regular slicker brush which cost half the price and which will probably last just as long, providing that that no one uses the handle for a chew toy! .

Next I tried it on my Golden Retriever Casey. Casey’s hair is quite a bit thinner than Chance’s is but there were a couple of spots where the hair was long and had begun to knot a bit. While it did fine on Casey’s shorter hair, there was still a problem when it came to the feathers along his legs. The brush did not seem to get deep enough into the fur without me separating it with my fingers.

I also found some problems with the push button that made the brush retract and release. I had to make sure it was locked in place. When I extended the pins even though I was sure i had locked it in place I had to have to fiddle with the button a little to get it to stay. I can see having trouble in the future with the button feature.

Again worth ten dollars? Well I suppose if your dog’s hair is short with a slight undercoat, and your fingers are full of pinholes then yes, you may want to pay the ten dollars. Me? I’ll invest in a sturdier slicker brush and a roll of gauze to wrap my fingers in! So it’s a two paws down from this big dog's view.

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