Safely Using Dog Hair Clippers

Dog hair clippers can be a very helpful grooming tool if you know how to use them safely. Here are some tips to help you successfully and safely clip your dog's hair. 

Make Clipping More Comfortable for Your Dog

You should begin grooming your dog with dog hair clippers early in his life, so that he gets used to it when he's young. The older your dog is, the more he's going to resist being groomed with clippers.

Use the quietest hair clippers you can find. Loud clippers will scare your dog.

Do Your Research

Learn about your dog's breed standard and use the Internet to find out what your dog's haircut should look like. Most breed club websites provide examples of standard cuts for the breed.

Ask a dog groomer to help you practice grooming your dog with hair clippers before you try to do it yourself at home.

Keep Your Clippers in Good Repair

The blades of your dog hair clippers should always be sharp. Dull blades pull your dog's hair. Dull blades will also cut your dog worse if you happen to make a mistake. Choose blades designed for your dog's coat type.

A snap on guide comb can help you cut your dog's hair evenly without getting too close to the skin. You should choose different sizes of clipper blade to accommodate all the different types of hair that form your dog's coat. Dog hair clipper blades are numbered; the higher the number of the blade, the shorter and finer its cut.

Keep Your Clippers Lubricated

Clipper lubricant, or coolant, keeps your dog hair clipper blades from getting too warm. Clipper blades get hot enough to burn your dog if you don't use a lubricant or coolant. Lubricate the clipper blades before use, but make sure you wipe off any excess lubricant so that you don't smear it through your dog's coat.

Handle Your Clippers Properly

When grooming your dog with hair clippers, remember to stop often so that the clipper blades can cool down. When your clipper blades get hot, you can cool them down by spraying them with clipper coolant. You can also place the clipper blades on a metal surface, like a cookie sheet, to cool them off quickly. Otherwise, you can change the blades or switch to another hair clipper, if you have extra clippers or blades.

Before You Clip

Before you begin grooming your dog with hair clippers, make sure he's clean and that his coat has been thoroughly brushed. Remove tangles, mats and debris.

Start in an inconspicuous area. You might start your dog's haircut by neatening up some of the places that have become untidy since his last professional grooming. In any case, start in a place where you can do some experimenting, to find out how much hair the clipper will remove. Remember to change to the appropriate blade size before moving from light, fine fur into thicker, heavier fur.