Whole Dog Journal's Blog May 31, 2011

The FURminator Wins Yet Another Fan

Posted at 09:04AM - Comments: (22)

So, for years, I’ve been hearing about the “FURminator,” some sort of super-powered dog brush. I just couldn’t imagine there was all that much to it – and it was wildly expensive. FIFTY dollars for a dog brush? Or, as the company’s literature refers to it, a “de-Shedding Tool,” complete with that completely random capitalization.  This year, though, I finally got desperate enough to shell out the money, in hopes of getting a handle on the copious amounts of hair that my darling dog Otto is shedding.

Shock and awe. I *love* the FURminator. It’s an amazing tool. It really does perform as advertised; it pulls all the loose hair off the dog -- or cat! It worked great on my old cat Shadow’s super-fine coat, too!

A week ago, I spent a night at a friend’s house. My friend is the owner of Carly, a now-elderly dog who was once a frequent model for WDJ. Carly’s coat has gotten thicker and thicker over the years, and her shedding is now practically year-round. I mentioned the FURminator to Carly’s owner. “I know it’s expensive; buy one anyway. You’ll love it.”

I got the report this weekend. Maureen said, “I can’t believe how much hair I got off of Carly in the first session with the FURminator. I just keep thinking how much of my time and space in my vacuum bags this is going to save me.”

Have you tried the FURminator? Did it live up to your expectations?

Comments (22)

You know that saying "if it's too good to be true it probably is." Well guess what... it's true of the Furminator too. I'm shocked this journal would publish such an unobservant review.

WHY ON EARTH would you want to cut your dogs hair and top coat with a razor blade? Please explain. You wouldn't take a blade to your dogs coat so why is the Furmintor ok? The Furminator will ruin a long, double coated breeds coat. It CUTS It doesn't PULL the hair out. This is the worst review I've read. If you don't pay attention to what it's doing to your dog, he/she will end up a. injured b. bald with hair growing back strangely or c. with their beautiful long coat cut and ruined.

Sorry people. There is no magic bullet. A good old undercoat rake and a little elbow grease is required.

Posted by: D.Stratten | December 22, 2015 10:50 AM    Report this comment

Replying to a previous comment:
When using the two FURminator solutions to wash: ALWAYS use a drain guard to catch the hair as you rinse. There is a LOT of hair that comes off, especially while rinsing after the second (white) solution. You could seriously mess up your plumbing with all the hair that comes off if you just let it go down the drain. I have to keep taking the hair off the guard every minute or so as I rinse just to let the water continue to go down the drain.

Posted by: ThrpyDogTeam | June 9, 2011 10:55 AM    Report this comment

It works wonders on my German Shepard Shar Pei mix. I agree that long strokes works best. My dog LOVES it. She runs to me when I pull it out and often groans in that "oh, that feels soooo good" voice. Once a week works best for us too.

Posted by: SUSAN ESSEX | June 2, 2011 7:48 AM    Report this comment

For those who think this is a cutting tool....I took a large handful of my own shoulder-length hair, held it taught, shoved the Furminator tightly into it and ran it down a four-inch length. It did not cut one strand. Some breeders had told me not to use it on my conformation dog as they also believed that it cut the hair. Now they are using this fabulous tool on their own show dogs.

Suggestion: do not use it on areas that are not shedding. That may be how some people are using it and complaining about the results. One can hear and feel the difference when running the comb through a shedding area versus an area that is not shedding. Hard, dry sound with a rough feel if coat not shedding, soft sound with lots of gripping (and hair in comb) if coat is shedding.

Posted by: K9 | June 1, 2011 4:50 PM    Report this comment

I just got one for my husky mix dog and it has worked a miracle. Her top coat is entirely black while her undercoat is grey. Only grey fur comes out when I use it. We are able to touch her now without a could of fur coming off of her. This year and half old active puppy will actually sit in the back yard while I comb her. She might run away to sniff something but always comes back. She never did that with the blade. It was totally worth the price.

My Lab on the other hand doesn't like how it pulls her fur. She prefers the blade so that is what I use on her.

Posted by: mweidman | June 1, 2011 11:17 AM    Report this comment

Do some online shopping for great prices. I purchased 2 furminators, medium sized tools, last year for $19.99 plus s/h on Amazon. I have a lab/white shephard mix and the tool works great on her coat. I have been very pleased with how much hair it removes. But, you do have to be careful not to thin out the coat too much. It's obviously designed for longer haired breeds and I don't use it on my pointer mix as his coat is very short.

Posted by: KELLI B | June 1, 2011 8:28 AM    Report this comment

I've been using a Furminator since it came on the market and have been very pleased with it. I have one that I on my elderly GR and my young Lab mix, a smaller version for my cats, and an extra large one for my horse. It works a whole lot faster than a shedding comb or blade. I've found that long, gentle strokes rather than hard, fast strokes give the best results. When working on my Golden Retriever, I pull the long hair up and away and work on the undercoat. It's extremely effective, and I don't have anywhere near as many piles of hair floating around my house, stuck in corners, or hiding under furniture.

Posted by: LucyB | June 1, 2011 12:53 AM    Report this comment

My dogs (rat terriers, very short haired) do not like it but I use it on my cat, it is great but you must be careful not to use it for more than a minute or two or you end up with a bald cat! That happened to poor kitty last winter and it took months to grow back. I use it for a few strokes once a week or so.
To keep the cost down go to Amazon.com; it was about 1/3 of the price charged anywhere else.

Posted by: kimfatty | May 31, 2011 6:49 PM    Report this comment

I would not try one on my dogs. One of mine has a long coat. I have a friend who has the same breed, and she used a Furminator. It cut the whole coat, resulting in guard hairs sticking straight out all over the dog. For some reason incomprehensible to me, my friend prefers this appearance to the natural coat of the dog. Sorry, no Furminator for me! I get great results with stripping out undercoat using a metal-toothed flea comb. Works great!

Posted by: Natalie H. | May 31, 2011 6:10 PM    Report this comment

Fabulous on my old lab - took out tons of hair. Wouldn't use it on my border terrier, as it's the old top coat, not undercoat that needs stripping...

Posted by: Cami | May 31, 2011 5:39 PM    Report this comment

Love love LOVE the furminator... it's a fabulous tool! :0)

Posted by: Kristy W | May 31, 2011 4:28 PM    Report this comment

When using the solutions in the tub doesn't that cause hair going down the drain?

Posted by: Cheryl A. | May 31, 2011 3:25 PM    Report this comment

I have had the basic original Fuminator for years on my shorthair kitty who's always hated being combed. The Fuminator removes undercoat not top coat, and herncoats so soft and shiny after, try using it weekly, which is easy as she doesn't mind it, haven't used much on her tummy but she settles in, hardest part for me is doing her chin and chest area as she's comfortably settled above my waist and the handle gets in the way! Purrs the entire time from her.

Posted by: Cheryl A. | May 31, 2011 3:24 PM    Report this comment

I have had the FURminator tool for years and love it especially for our longer haired cat. After doing my homework I also purchased the FURminator 2-part washing system. You first wash the pet with the blue solution for 5 - 10 minutes, rinse thoroughly, then wash for 5 - 10 minutes with the white solution, and rinse thoroughly again. When the pet is thoroughly dry, use the tool. The shampoo process will make your tool work a lot better.

I have 4 distinct fur/hair types in my house. One needs to use the tool on the proper fur coat. There are FURminator knock offs out there that actually have a razor blade in the tool that DO cut the coat - there is no blade in a real Furminator tool.

The shampoos can be cut 8:1 with water so you actually get more than you think when you buy them.

Nothing seems to be different than any other shampoo when washing with the blue solution, but when washing with the white solution, the more I rub, the more coat starts to come off in my hands and falling off. This continues as I rinse. The first time I tried it, I was amazed. When my pet was all dry (following the directions) I used the FURminator tool and a remarkable amount of fur came out and it was undercoat, not excessive top coat.

The first time I used it I thought I was going to end up with a naked pet but this was not the case. My pet looked the same only with a wonderful silky coat and I had a huge pile of undercoat to throw away instead of it covering surfaces all over my house.

My adult son, who has allergies, does not react to my pet after I've used the FURminator product system. We now always use it just before he comes for a visit. I am very pleased to have a product that stops the shedding all over the house but also results in a wonderful visit with our son without the sneezing, running nose, and tearing eyes.

The FURminator tool is not effective for non-shedding breeds. Also, if your pet has extremely short hair, you probably do not need to use the FURminator tool. Follow the directions. Always do your homework. Read first.

Posted by: ThrpyDogTeam | May 31, 2011 2:30 PM    Report this comment

Is it okay to use a Furminator on a Bichon Frise? Would love to replace my slicker brush with a Fruminator. I dislike having to use the slicker on him. I also use a greyhound comb, but I'm sure that isn't replaceable with this.

Posted by: Michael H | May 31, 2011 1:58 PM    Report this comment

A friend of mine took a Furminator completely apart, and there is no blade.

I have a Norwich Terrier, and if you cut their coat, it becomes soft and easily matted. I use a Furminator on her (in addition to hand-stripping), and it does not cut her coat. It mostly removes undercoat.

Posted by: Mary Straus | May 31, 2011 1:04 PM    Report this comment

I tried one a few years ago and didn't like how it pulled the fur. It seemed to catch in my dog's fur alot and that didn't seem like something that was too comfortable. We have 6 dogs who shed alot and I've found a good shedding blade and a slicker brush work wonders. The Furminator seems like an implement of torture rather then a good brush. I ditched mine shortly after I got it.

Posted by: dogs5cats10 | May 31, 2011 12:37 PM    Report this comment

I've discovered that my constantly shedding cattle dog really responded to a change of food. For some reason, when she eats "Nutro's Natural Choice" or "Diamonds's Taste of the Wild" dog foods her hair stops the copious shedding. I don't know what the common denominator is - but the other Diamond brands, including "Nature's domain" make her into a shedding machine. The furminator helps - but not nearly as good as a change of diet.

Posted by: Linda - Washington State | May 31, 2011 12:18 PM    Report this comment

I used a Furminator in the past, but I discarded it when I learned it's basically a surgical clipping blade with a plastic handle. My understanding is that the blade is essentially cutting/breaking the coat in order to remove it. I consider it a trimming device, not a brush that removes loose fur. Plus, it's very easy to over-do it, cut away too much fur, hurt the skin, and ruin the coat. I think there are safer ways to brush out loose undercoat that is ready to come out. A good natural bristle brush, or even a rake with rounded tips. I was going to give away my Furminator, but ended up tossing it, because I didn't feel right giving this type of tool to anyone except a professional groomer who would know when to stop removing fur. I tried to give it to two groomers, and they refused it, saying they wouldn't use it.

Posted by: Jency | May 31, 2011 12:11 PM    Report this comment

I bought one a few years ago for my labs...especially my female whose coat is a bit heavier than my male. It's also silkier. Well the FURminator did get loads of fur off of her and I was really surprised and happy...until I realized that it basically ruined her soft silky coat :( It's as if it broke it or somehow made it very rigid. I'm not a groomer so I don't know the real words to use, but it took a while for her softness & silkiness to come back. I went back to using my rake.

Posted by: blackies3 | May 31, 2011 12:00 PM    Report this comment

A few years ago I loaned out my shedding rake and, figuring I'd never see it again went to the local pet store to buy a new one but came home with the Furminator. Yes, it works wonderfully but my older dog thought it was a bit uncomfortable. It looks like a mini version of my horse shedding blade. But, yes, it does a great job even getting the top coat that sheds annually.

Posted by: MARIE-LOUISE H | May 31, 2011 11:54 AM    Report this comment

Just got the new one and it is even better than the old one!! Love it!

Posted by: Heidi R | May 31, 2011 11:45 AM    Report this comment

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