Learning how to use dog clippers is a skill that every pet owner should know. There are certain breeds that require regular haircuts, and knowing how to do it at home can save you a lot on professional grooming expenses. Even if your dog doesn't need a haircut, you may need to shave a small patch of his fur at some point.
You'll want to select a pair of clippers that is made for clipping dog fur. Pick the right size for your dog. You don't want a small set of clippers if you're trying to cut the hair of a Saint Bernard or a large set to trim your Yorkie.
I also recommend looking for a pair of clippers that is designed with a quiet motor. You won't find a silent pair, but the less noise that the motor makes, the easier it will be to cut your dog's hair. The loud buzzing of some clippers will make most dogs nervous.
Once you've selected the clippers that are best for your pet's coat, you also need to think about how comfortable they are for you. Choose a lightweight set that won't make your hand and arm tired after only a few minutes of grooming.
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How To Use Dog Clippers to Trim or Cut Dog's Hair
Before you learn how to use dog clippers, you'll need to wash, dry and brush your pup. This will ensure that there are no mats, tangles or debris. If your clippers get caught up on tangled fur, it will cause your dog a great deal of pain.
As you'll see me demonstrate in my video guide, you want to clip the hair in the direction that it grows. I know it seems like you should shave against the hair growth, but this will cause unsightly lines that you won't be able to get rid of.
Starting at the dog's neck and work your way down to the base of the tail. In my video guide I explain that it is easiest to do one side of the dog at a time. Shave a line down his back and then choose a side to complete first.
You'll need to move the clippers slowly down the dog's body. Going too fast will also result in unattractive lines in the finished coat that you won't be able to get rid of.
If your dog begins to get antsy, just take a short break and then get back to it. Rushing will only make the finished product very unpleasant.
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Many people do not realize that while you're learning how to use dog clippers, the blades of the clippers will be heating up. The heat from the motor and the friction of the blades creates heat.
You need to stop clipping every few minutes and test the heat of the blades on your skin. If you're not paying attention you could end up burning your dog. This is known as clipper burn, and is sadly a very common mishap for at-home groomers.
Go slow, clip with the hair growth, and be sure to routinely check the temperature of the blades. If you follow these tips and tricks, you'll know how to use dog clippers in no time.
In the beginning it will probably take you a while to give Fido a haircut, but as you get used to the clippers you'll be able to work faster. Just remember that if you're new to at-home grooming, it's best to seek the advice and guidance of a professional groomer before you begin.
They can give you pointers about the best cut for your dog, the best clippers to use, and how often you'll need to trim your pet's fur. They can also tell you some of the common grooming issues that may pop up with your breed and what to be looking for.