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So you are a proud owner of a Golden Retriever, I am too! I have a beautiful 3-year old Golden named Ellie, and I must say that she is a bit of a Diva. She loves getting beautified, any attention put on her the better. It wasn’t always that way however, when she was a puppy every time I tried to brush her she wanted nothing to do with it. She would see the brush and run away!
So, how did she turn into a Diva you ask? Well, it took time to get her used to being brushed, I was persistent with her, showing her the brush, letting her sniff it and gently brushing her, and offering a treat after. I did this daily, and overtime she started getting used to it, sometimes she would see the brush as a toy and grab it in her mouth and run away with it, making me chase her. All in good fun.
In the following article I would like to discuss why you should brush your dog, and I want to talk about the best dog brush for Golden Retrievers.
The Importance of Brushing Your Golden
I brush Ellie every day for a good 10-15 minutes, it is part of her routine now and she loves it. She likes to go outside in the yard and chew her sticks while I brush her. It is a win win situation, I don’t have to deal with all the fur flying around in the house, and she gets to enjoy time outside.
I believe it is important to brush your dog regularly in order to keep their coat looking its best. Golden Retrievers have a double coat, consisting of a dense water repellent outer coat, and a thick under coat. Some coats range from being wavy, to straight.
Golden Retrievers shed a lot!!! Heavy shedding in the spring and fall when they lose their summer and winter coats, and then moderate shedding during summer and winter. Daily brushing will help eliminate some of the fur that ends up in your house.
Goldens love to get dirty and roll in mud, among other things! (Dead smelly animals) They also love to go in the water. Brushing will help keep the dirt and debris out of their coats.
The long hair of a Golden will get tangled easily and without regular brushing can lead to matting, which can be very painful for your dog.
Brushing will stimulate your dogs natural oils in their skin, helping to keep their coat healthy and shiny.
Regular brushing will also allow you to keep a close eye on any changes in their skin, ears, and paws for any potential issues.
What Type of Brush to Look For
When looking for a brush for your Golden Retriever, you need to look at brushes that are specifically designed for long thick hair. Some criteria to consider are:
- The size of the brush, don’t get a tiny brush, look for a brush that has a large head so it can cover more area of your dogs fur, saving you time.
- Spacing of the bristles, the space between each bristle is important. You do not want the bristles to be too tight together making it harder to brush through your dogs thick fur. Look for a brush with wide spaced bristles, so that you can easily brush thick fur and not cause any pain for your dog.
- Sturdy handle, make sure the brush has a good sturdy and firm handle. It should feel comfortable in your hand, this is especially important if you are going to be brushing on a daily basis.
Also make sure that the brush you buy is actually meant for a dog! Don’t make the same mistake that I once did by trying to save money and just buying a human hair brush at the local drugstore. It was so not the same thing!! Lesson learned.
A Look at 2 Popular Types of Brushes
1. Slicker Brush:
Slicker Brushes usually have a rectangular shaped head, with fine wire bristles that are spaced tightly together. The bristles are slightly angled so that they do not scratch your dogs skin.
This type of brush quickly and effectively removes any loose fur from your dogs coat.
Slicker Brushes are good at removing mats and tangles, and dead skin.
This brush type is mainly used for thick or curly haired dogs, that require a more rigorous grooming routine.
Look for a self-cleaning slicker brush, which means that there is a button on the back of the head that you push and the bristles will retract and you can easily clean the dog hair away.
It is very important to note that slicker brushes need to be used gently, if you apply too much pressure with this type of brush, you could scratch your dog’s skin.
My Slicker Brush Recommendations:
Paw Brothers Slicker Brush
This brush is made for medium to large sized dogs that have thick or double coated hair. It is a large size brush with stainless steel pins and a non-slip rubberized handle.
GoPets Self-Cleaning Professional Slicker Brush
This brush penetrates deep into the hair and grooms the undercoat without scratching the skin. It has a button that you push to retract the bristles so that the hair in the brush can easily be removed. It has a comfortable gel gripped handle that helps prevent hand and wrist strain.
2. Pin Brush:
Pin Brushes usually have a rounded/oval shaped head, with wire pins with smoothed ball tips to prevent any scratching to the skin.
Pin brushes are a good choice for long haired dogs because the bristles have a wide space between them that allows for a gentle yet thorough brushing.
Look for a pin brush that has all wire pins. A brush with all wire pins will effectively remove any loose hair and tangles from your dog.
Avoid a pin brush that has rubberized tips. I find that the rubberized tips are not effective at all in removing any tangles or loose hair. The tips are too big and smooth to be able to grip anything.
Because pin brushes are so gentle and massaging, your dog will likely enjoy the brushing experience. This will allow you to be able to brush your dog more frequently.
My Pin Brush Recommendations:
Andis Pet Tool
This brush is great for medium to large sized dogs, and ideal for long hair. It easily detangles and removes dirt and loose hair.
Boshel Dog Hair Brush & Rubber Dog Hair Remover
This is a 2 in 1 brush that easily detangles your dog’s hair, and the other side of the brush removes the dog hair off of your clothes or any other surface.
Advantages and Disadvantages
1. Slicker Brush
- Effectively removes mats and tangles
- Able to penetrate deep into the fur
- Massages the skin
- Wire bristles can scratch your dogs skin, if not used gently
- Uncomfortable for your dog, because of the above reason, and therefore may not be used daily
2. Pin Brush
- Gentle on your dog, with smooth rounded tips
- Wide spaced bristles, allow for a thorough brushing, and gentle removal of tangles
- Good for daily use
- Not as quick and effective at detangling the coat
- Doesn’t penetrate down to the skin
I hope that the above article has given you some perspective about the type of brush to use on your Golden Retriever. Please keep in mind the importance of regular brushing, and with the right type of brush your dog will likely enjoy being brushed on a regular basis.
I would love to hear any comments that you may have, and what your experience has been while brushing your Golden.