Because dogs have many different coat types and because different brushes can fulfill different functions, there are countless options for this important tool.
We’ll show you how to choose dog slicker brush that is effective and efficient for grooming your dog.
Types of Coat
The most important factor in choosing the type of brush you’ll use is your dog’s coat type. When you’re researching a new slicker brush, look to see if it’s suitable for your pup’s fur. Some dogs have a combination of coat types.
Length and Thickness
The length and thickness of your dog’s fur will definitely influence the type of brush you end up choosing. The best short hair dog brush likely won’t be the best slicker brush for a dog with longer fur.
Some brushes don’t have bristles long or sturdy enough to penetrate a longer, thicker coat. Others might be too stiff or harsh for a thin, light coat if you’re looking for the best brush for short hair dogs.
Wiry, Smooth, or Delicate
The texture of human hair determines how we care for it—why wouldn’t it be similar to our furry pals? The dog slicker brush is one that is compatible with the texture of your dog’s fur.
Delicate coats like those on Yorkies and Maltese require soft bristles to gently detangle without breaking or pulling, while a best brush for bulldog fur probably needs more bristles to lend your dog’s coat shine.
Wiry coats often require a firmer brush, while soft smooth coats a softer one—both can tolerate more tightly packed bristles than might be ideal for delicate coats. A brush designed for a soft, smooth coat is likely to be the best brush for French bulldog fur.
Undercoat or No?
Your dog’s undercoat or lack thereof will have a big effect on your grooming practices! Fluffy undercoats generally require more robust de-shedding tools, while dogs without undercoats often have sensitive skin that requires extra care with the brush.
Take a close look at your dog’s fur. Is there a coarser, longer layer over a soft, puffy layer?
If so, your dog has an undercoat. Look for the best dog slicker brush for shedding to keep him happy and healthy.
Of course, some dogs without undercoats shed, too. Some people are surprised to find out that the answer to “Do bulldogs shed?” is actually yes, quite a bit!
A French bulldog grooming brush may need to be able to collect loose hairs, but it probably not as much as one designed for a husky!
5 Best Dog Brushes for Your Dog – A Quick Comparison
This is one of Amazon’s best-selling dog brushes, likely because it’s so versatile. It’s suitable for a wide variety of dog coat types, and it fulfills most of the functions you need in a single tool.
But we’d be remiss to ignore another factor that generates major appeal:
The For Your Dog 2 in 1 Combo Bristle Brush comes in at under $5.00. If you’re looking for a brush that won’t hurt your budget and can take care of most of your grooming needs, this just may be the best brush for bulldog shedding thanks to its bristle side.
While the brush is advertised as being for “all breeds and coat types,” however, we would caution owners of dogs with more extreme coat types against relying solely on “one size fits all” grooming tools.
The best brush for bulldog owners whose dogs have sensitive skin that isn’t uncommon to the breed may be one more specifically designed with that in mind. The best brush for a Shiba Inu owner whose dog has a particularly fluffy dense undercoat might be one designed with that particular factor in mind.
Having said that, if your dog’s coat or skin type doesn’t hit the extreme ends of the sensitive, fluffy, or long spectrums, this may be the best brush for you.
The pin side is most helpful for detangling fur and remove loose fur from your dog’s coat.
The bristle side removes dirt and loose fur and helps spread natural oils produced by the dog’s skin throughout the fur.
The brush sides are relatively large, so you can groom dogs of all sizes efficiently.
Reviewer Michelle R. Rockwell weighed in with a five-star review that cites the brush’s durability. She also says her Pekinese Gizmo will lay for hours enjoying the brush’s comforting bristles against his skin.
James C. also points out the brush’s surprisingly sturdy construction compared to its price, and its versatility.
Price!This is an inexpensive grooming tool by any measure, and you’re unlikely to find a similar value in stores.
If you have limited space, or just want to streamline your overflowing collection of pet supplies, this 2-in-1 option is ideal.
Ease of use. Unlike some brush types, which might require an owner to learn how to use them properly, this brush is completely intuitive.
Flimsy pins. Yes, many reviewers praised the construction of the brush as relative to its price, and we agree for the most part. The pins, however, loose fur more easily than we’d like.
Difficulty cleaning. Both sides of the brush were a little difficult to clean. It’s not easy to remove thick, soft fur from the bristle side, and water can get trapped beneath the rubber seating for the pins.
Not good for dense curls or undercoats. This should probably be listed in the description. Neither side is ideal for these types of coats, and this fact probably shouldn’t be glossed over in the item description.
2. Bodhi Dog Bath Brush
Described as a “pet shampoo brush” featuring “massage rubber bristles” this soft rubber brush can be used both wet and dry.
The Bodhi Dog Bath Brush is essentially a soft version of a carrying brush, designed for use on many different types of house pets.
At $9.99, this brush is a solid investment, especially if you’re looking for a way to make bathtime more efficient and effective for your dog’s coat.
It’s best suited for short to medium-length fur, and owners may find it’s less effective on dense undercoats or very long fur.
Most reviewers seemed to feel the brush was far more effective wet than dry. Many, like reviewer Barakah, share anecdotes about bath-shy pups that become much more receptive because they enjoy this massager.
This may just be one of the best brush for English bulldog bathing we’ve used.
Dogs genuinely enjoy it. The hype surrounding dogs loving a lather massage with this brush is legit! Every dog we tried it on was at least tolerant, but most were obviously really enjoying being scrubbed.
It speeds up bath time. For most coat types, this helps to get suds down to the skin much more quickly, and when combined with rinsing, gets your buddy soap-free faster, too. So even for dogs that still hate baths, this brush can be a boon.
Soft and gentle. So many deep cleaning grooming tools can be tricky to use gently, but the Bodhi brush makes it super-simple to get your furry friend fresh and clean without bothering sensitive skin.
Dry brushing is a little overrated for most coat types. For owners with bulldogs, Am staffs, and other breeds with thin, flat coats, this might be a great dry brush. But for dogs with undercoats, curls, and major shedding issues, it’s just not that fantastic when used dry.
Difficult to clean when dry. Another issue with dry brushing is the fact that loose hair stuck in this brush when dry can be difficult to remove.
Clumsy to use for smaller hands. For children or even adults with smaller hands, the Bodhi brush can be a bit of a hassle to use. The strap doesn’t hug the hand, so it slips off easily once it’s sudsy.
This is another two-in-one offering. One side of this brush is composed of synthetic bristles, the other has metal pins.
The metal pin brush side is best for detangling and brushing longer or denser fur dog’s coat, while the bristle side is good for smoothing flat coats and adding some luster.
Safari Pin & Bristle Brush comes in a variety of sizes for different dogs. One thing worth mentioning is that the larger sizes aren’t just better for bigger dogs—they’re also better for longer hair in some cases.
At $4.99 as an add-on item with free Prime shipping, this brush is an excellent value—especially because the pins are completely composed of metal.
Some brushes have plastic-tipped pins; when the plastic wears off, the pin brush is sharp and irritating to dogs’ skin. Since the Safari has rounded metal pins, that doesn’t happen.
Unlike the Your Dog Combo Brush, the Safari’s pin side is suitable for dogs with denser or longer loose hair. However, the bristle side is, according to reviewer Alrian, a bit too densely packed and stiff to be effective on anything but very short coats.
One of the best pin-type brushes we’ve come across! The pin side of this brush is sturdy enough to handle longer and denser hair than many other value-priced pin brushes. The full-metal pins mean it will last longer, too.
Price! This is another very inexpensive brush that makes you feel like you’re getting more than you paid for.
Great balance between sturdy construction and gentle brushing. Some brushes that are sturdy enough to stand up to dense fur tend to pull, while others that are gentle on the skin and don’t pull just aren’t strong enough to get through a thick undercoat. That’s not a problem with this brush.
Lower quality bristles. It’s strange to us that the pin side is so well designed, but the bristle side seems really lacking in comparison. It’s a little too stiff, rough, and densely packed to be the best brush for loose hair of this type.
Not great for collecting short hair. While this brush is fairly good at removing loose hairs, it doesn’t collect the fur in the brush for easy disposal when the fur is short.
Larger versions are heavy. It’s a minor flaw, but the wooden handle makes the large version of this brush heavy. If you have longer brushing sessions, this can be a bit annoying.
This slicker brush is designed to removing loose hair and help you easily untangle potential mats. It has a push-button fur removal system. Outside of a dog brush vacuum system, this is about as tidy as we’ve ever used!
Discounted to $15.99 from a $39.99 retail price, the Hertzko is the priciest brush on the list.
But is it the best bristle brush here?
It might be… especially if you have a dog that sheds a great deal. It’s a good match for many different coat types, too.
Reviewers on Amazon couldn’t praise this pin brush enough, with many highlighting its effectiveness at fur removal.
Untangles mats easily. Mats are the bane of many a dog owner, and this brush is an excellent choice for detangling dense mats.
Removes excess fur—a LOT of it. This is one of the best fur removal brushes we’ve seen, and the push-button cleaning system makes disposing of that fur a breeze.
Gentle bristles. It’s tough to find a slicker brush that balances great fur removal with gentle bristles, but this one’s a winner as long as your dog’s skin isn’t overly sensitive.
Bulky and clumsy on small animals. The wide rectangular head is just too big to maneuver comfortably if your pup’s not a big guy.
Short bristles can mean a long brushing session. If your dog has very dense hair, it may take you a few all-over brushing sessions to get to the bottom layer of his undercoat.
Can still irritate sensitive skin. While this brush is gentle relative to other slicker brushes, tiny metal tines can still cause your thin-skinned pup distress—use it cautiously.
KOng Zoom Groom soft rubber brush can be used both as a shampooing brush and as a dry brush. Its claim to fame is removing loose hair.
At $5.99, it’s a bit more expensive than the similarly designed Bodhi brush, but with Kong’s reputation for sturdiness in all of their products that extra dollar may be worth it.
Really does work well wet and dry. As we’ve seen in previous reviews, every feature of a multipurpose brush isn’t always equally effective. The Kong ZoomGroom, on the other hand, really delivers.
Great ergonomic shape. This brush fits well in the hand and is easy to grip even when slippery.
Varieties of sizes and firmnesses. The pink version of the brush is a bit firmer than the blue version, and with large and small brush sizes available, you can choose the best brush for your pup.
Not as efficient as other de-shedding methods. There’s no question that the ZoomGroom gets loose hair free, but it may take longer than a heavy duty slicker brush.
Not an effective detangler. The ZoomGroom is great for removing loose fur regardless of coat type, but it’s just not a good de-tangler or the best grooming tools if your dog has longer fur.
You can check out the ZoomGroom by Kong on Amazon here! #commissionsearned
And the winner for best dog brush is…
Our pick for overall for dog grooming?
The Safari Bristle & Pin combo. You can find this American-made product on Amazon, and learn more about their manufacturer at CoastalPet.com.
This brush works on a wider variety of hair types, and its design helps to make sure you’re not tormenting your pal with scratchy or dangerous metal bristles. It holds up better to extended use, and it comes in two helpful sizes.
Some of the other brushes may be the best grooming tools in certain circumstances, but Safari is the most versatile all-around.
Have another best dog brush you prefer? Let us know! And feel free to comment with questions as well!