Product Type: Company of Animals dog accessories
Newest Review: ... removing the loose undercoat of an animal which a normal brush usually misses or can't reach. It removed these loose hairs without damagin... more
Princess Pig and her Magic Comb
The Company of Animals Furminator
Member Name: rolletrog
The Company of Animals Furminator
Date: 22/05/09, updated on 23/05/09 (232 review reads)
Advantages: Simple, painless, removes A LOT of dead fur
Disadvantages: Try using it on a wriggling lab, price
~~*~~*~~ Furminator ~~*~~*~~
Labradors are hairy: they love to share their fur with all and sundry but personally, I'm not keen on finding bits of Pig's coat in my dinner. Tempted though I was to use Immac and be done with it, I used to ritually brush her but generally all I was doing was taking the top-coat off before eventually reaching the loose undercoat (which is the bit that appeared in my mothers earl-grey much to her disgust) and this took an inordinate amount of effort - Pig is not a calm dog and gets somewhat overexcited when the brush comes out but that's because she's a twit. Luckily, someone invented The Furminator and my life has become a little easier and definitely less hairy.
~~*~~ The Furminator Itself ~~*~~
It's not as exciting as it sounds so feel free to skip to the end. It's essentially a de-shedding tool that's masked as a brush - there are others on the market but Furminator's supposed to be the bestest. It's got a handle which is always a good idea, except this handle is solid and ribbed for your pleasure - it's easy to maintain a firm grip even when Piggle is trying to run away. The head itself is kind of at a 70 degree angle to the handle and is made of heavy metal - there are two sets of what can only be described as 'teeth' - the longer ones go through the top-coat and then with the movement, push the undercoat out. There are no blades involved and although sometimes bits of top-coat come out too, it's probably because I've been too rough and just pulled it out - Pig must hate me. There are 5 different Furminators to choose from:
Small Blue - 1.75" edge - for small to medium dogs, ferrets, rabbits and cats.
Purple Cat - 1.75" edge - for small to medium cats (why it's any different to the small blue one, I don't know)
Medium Yellow - 2.6" edge - for medium dogs and cats
Large Yellow - 4" edge - for large Pigs
Equine Black - 5" edge - for horses, stoopid
I chose large (because I thought it was for 'large-breed' but it's more for the Giant breeds) but in retrospect, medium probably would have been better as Pig's not particularly grand (apart from her waist-line) and I could have saved myself a few quid but hey ho, it still works fine.
The Furminator claims also to reduce furballs in cats (well it will do if there's less fur to ingest, won't it), promotes a shiny topcoat and healthier skin by bringing out the animals natural oils (by removing the dead undercoat, the top-coat will get the natural oils so yep, that works) and reduces the amount of 'airbourne elements' that cause allergies (dunno bout that but ok).
~~*~~ Short, back and sides please ~~*~~
The Furminator comes with instructions - naturally neither me nor Piggy read them but here they are for all of you intrigued with the correct procedure:
Before each use, you should perform a complete examination of your creature to make sure there are no mats or tangles in the coat in which case you should either get rid of them or just admit defeat immediately and let them become a walking carpet. If during your inspection you find any sores/cuts/abrasions etc, you shouldn't use the Furminator and you should ask yourself what the hell your animal's been up to.
Make sure your creature is completely dry: they recommend that it's best used after you've washed and dried your dog/cat: a) who washes a cat, b) who's ever tried to dry a Labrador completely? - Impossible I hear you cry. Instead, I opt for waiting until nearly midnight when the Pig has slept herself dry and then going for it.
Furminate in an area where you'll be able to sweep up or hoover easily because there will be a lot of fur - I personally wouldn't recommend doing it in your yard because the wind always seems to blow chunks of fur into my face but its up to you.
Remember to take the protective guard off the thing as it doesn't do a right lot if you don't.
Brush with less force than you normally would and go with the fur, not against it. If you notice your piglet's skin is a bit red, then desist - you're obviously far too excitable and shouldn't be let loose with the tool. Also, be careful around your animal's sensitive areas (armpits, letterboxes, keyholes, lipsticks (work it out for yourself)) but I don't tend to bother with these parts as it's too much effort.
The official Furminator website recommends that you use it once or twice a week (they also recommend using their shampoos and conditioners too but bugger that for a game of soldiers) for between 10 - 20 mins which should reduce the shedding by 90% - I use it when I can be arsed and when the Pig's calm which probably works out a lot less but it doesn't really matter because every little helps.
~~*~~ Number of gravy bones needed to purchase ~~*~~
Pig's one was about £30 with postage off good old ebay but the prices vary according to size and where you find them. The smallest one is more like £15 and the large can retail at £40. I got mine when they were a relatively new product so it was pretty pricey then, apparently there are many copies and similar products out there but the Furminator wins.
Petplanet.co.uk - large = £39.99 ~ they've also got their own version called Furbuster for £20 (if I were Furminator I'd be challenging them over that name).
Amazon - £26.99 - there's two left in stock, so, hurry.
~~*~~ Will it outlive the dog? ~~*~~
Apparently the average user should not need to replace their Furminator for the life of their pet - they've not met Pig 'The Furball' Labrador, however, for the medium, large and equine de-shedders they do offer replaceable blades should I ever replace the Pig. The product as a whole seems extremely sturdy and weighty - there's no chance of one of pig's hooves snapping the blade or her chewing through it (not that she uses it by herself (it's pretty difficult for her to brush her back, especially without opposable thumbs)). It does seem particularly robust just like the Pig.
~~*~~ Suitable for your Mexican Hairless? ~~*~~
Erm, not really. It's meant for animals that shed their coat - if you're not sure whether your creature sheds then handily you can check out cat and dog breeds that the Furminator is suitable for on the FAQ section on the Furminator website. If you are having trouble reading this review due to the amount of hair you're currently peering through, then you'll probably need one.
~~*~~ Is she worth it ~~*~~
Of course; she's my Iggle Piggle, my ray of brown sunshine, my furry fat friend - it's a big initial outlay but at least it should last. Seriously, it's worth investing in one so that hoovering doesn't become a daily occurrence through the summer months - Pig is fairly horrendous at the moment so I'm Furminating more often than I could usually be bothered to do but her coat is absolutely gorgeous and very shiny.
For those of you who are intrigued and inspired by this insightful review, then maybe, just maybe, you'd like to pop across to the Furminator website for more information - www.furminator.com or perhaps you'd rather email one of them on firstname.lastname@example.org - 'tis up to you.
*It's supposed to be FURminator but I couldn't be arsed to do write it like that each time.
**If you go to their website, you'll see some lovely video demos which show just how much mess you can make by grooming your pet.
***I realise the title is a little far-fetched but I didn't want to go down the Terminator route and time was running out.
Thanks for reading.
Review will most definitely appear elsewhere.
Caroline & Pig
Both admiring our luscious locks.
Summary: You can make a purse out of a sow's ear.
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