Review by fdr:
In our 10-animal household (dogs and cats), fur is everywhere. I thought I had found the holy grail of grooming tools in the Zoom Groom (they make different models for dogs and for cats), which removes a lot of fur without giving the animal an unpleasant experience. Now I think the Zoom Groom is a great little brush, but when it comes to amount of fur removed, it’s got nothin’ on the Furminator. Even my long-hair cat who dislikes being groomed will let me use the Furminator on her for a good long stretch.
How does it work? Excellent question; I still can’t figure it out exactly after extensive use, but I can tell you what it does NOT do. It doesn’t pull or cut the hair; the comb-style “blade” does not have a sharp edge. Also, it doesn’t cause discomfort for the animal; mine all seem to enjoy it very much, like it gives a pleasant scratching sensation. (I ran it along my own arm as a test, and experienced the same.)
If you go to the Furminator website and watch the grooming videos there, you will see tremendous amounts of fur being removed from dogs and cats after they have been groomed using a few different styles of grooming tools. These videos are not faked; I could not believe the piles and piles of fur I removed from my critters with the Furminator, even after using a fine-toothed flea comb on them. Their coats are so soft after I groom them, and the amount of hair shed on my furniture and floors actually seems to have decreased! Plus the critters — especially those with heavy undercoats for winter warmth — are way more comfy in the summer heat.
A downside — the manufacturer does suggest you will need to buy replacement blades to maintain the performance of this tool; I am not sure how one can tell if the blade is “dull” but perhaps it will become clear after more use. All in all, however, the price is well worth the performance of this high-quality tool.
UPDATE: I wanted to add that this tool is designed to be used on clean(ish), dry, tangle-free fur. If the coat has more than a couple of burrs or tangles, use a different kind of tool (scissors or a comb) to remove these first before grooming, as the Furminator will just skim right over these areas. Also, it will not work very effectively on wet or really grubby fur; this is not the tool to reach for right after your dog’s been swimming!
Review by Katy Lake:
And I say it as an expert on just about any product that promises to reduce pet hair shedding, or make the clean up of it easier.
I have a Norwegian Elkhound, one very compact, highly intelligent, gorgeous and HAIRY dog. She has both a long coat and a very prolific downy white undercoat that seemingly sheds 24/7. It’s got a cotton ball texture; tufts of it stick out, and if you pull it, you get a pouf of very soft white down that is guaranteed to stick to you and everything in its path.
My former regimen was to use a rubber curry brush for the long outer coat, and (the part I hate), an undercoat rake. No matter how much I brush her, I’m covered with hair, and there’s a grocery bag FULL of hair. It’s an hour to two hour task, and as much as I love my dog, a huge, hairy nuisance!
When I got the Furminator, I was impressed with the heft of it. I bought the large size with the idea that it’d be that much less effort (generally speaking, the small size is the cheapest, but it’s so small, it would take forever on anything but the smallest or unhairiest dog. And the difference in price between the medium and large is, at most places, only a few bucks. If you’re going to invest in the furminator, go for the size that makes the most out of every pass over the dog’s coat.)
So I tried a few swoops on the dog. And yeah, it resulted in a ton of hair, but if I just run my fingers through her coat, I get pretty much the same result.
I got a grocery bag (to store the hair pulled off the comb) and set to work. On the initial combing, it took a little less than the usual hour it does. What was interesting, though, is that I used only the Furminator, not the undercoat rake and curry comb combo I usually use. In that sense, it was less time and effort.
The bag, as usual, was full. But the thing that really sold me on the Furminator is how good her coat looked. Very professional looking, like she had just gotten back from the groomer’s.
Now it’s a few days later, and lo and behold, one of the promises the maker of the Furminator made seems to actually be true: there is less loose hair on her. Usually I see long hairs and some of those fluffy white tufts peeking up, but that’s not the case after her de-Furmination. NO loose hair, no undercoat tufts!
I can say that, based on me trying just about every comb, method, and grooming device, this is the first time my dog’s been this relatively hairless since I got her.
The Furminator promises that there will be less of a hair problem with its use. All I can say is that based on one thorough use of it, that claim seems to be true. I’d recommend it (and it does have a 30 day money-back guarantee from the manufacturer.)
The only reason why I’m not five-starring this is because of the price. I still don’t see why it’s so expensive, and I got a good price on it w/shipping (I paid and that’s still too much!) I’m also worried about the cost of replacement blades for this. There’s simply no reason it should cost so much!
I’d also recommend you shop around for price. I got the best deal on this (including shipping) from an ebay store (not a regular auction.) Just beware the shipping prices on places that seem to be cheap.