Grooming serves a vital role in maintaining a pet’s health and comfort, and the best dog grooming clippers clock between 2,000 and 3,500 strokes per minute (SPM) for the right amount of power without too much noise. In general, many groomers find corded clippers to be a great go-to option because they won't run out of charge in the middle of a grooming session, but lightweight cordless clippers can be more convenient when you need more maneuvering room or can’t easily access an outlet. But before you get to clipping, note that pet owners shouldn’t clip a dog’s fur without proper training — incorrect grooming can not only lead to cuts or nicks but also leave your dog susceptible to sunburns and heat stroke. So it’s best to leave grooming to the professionals whenever possible.
The best clippers for you and your dog will depend on your specific grooming needs and budget, but you should always opt for a high-quality product whenever a sharp blade is involved. In the case of clippers, this will often mean shelling out for a reputable brand. Professional-grade grooming brands, including Andis and Wahl, clearly list the SPM and other technical specifications of their clippers, which can be helpful when you’re trying to find the right clippers for your pet. Some devices offer multiple speed settings, which can be nice if you’d like more control as you groom your pup. Depending on your comfort level with grooming, you might prefer a clipper that comes with helpful accessories like guards or combs. Quiet, narrow trimmers, also called mini clippers, can be a good choice for paws and other sensitive areas. Finally, if your dog is particularly sensitive to the noise electric clippers make, you could also try a noise-free manual grooming kit with scissors designed to safely clip fur.
From powerful corded clippers to lightweight cordless ones, here are four tools designed to make dog grooming a little easier.
1. A Powerful Corded Dog Clipper For All Coat Types
Best for: All coat types
Clocking in at 1.1 pounds, this Andis ProClip clipper features a two-speed rotary motor with a max SPM of 3,400. It has a cool-running design that doesn't incorporate fans or vents that can get blocked with fur. The detachable blade is integral to its design, making it easier to swap it out and clean it. Plus, the shatterproof exterior should be able to hold up to standard wear and tear. The cord is 14 feet, so you'll have plenty of room to maneuver as needed. While the Andis ProClip doesn’t come with attachment combs, you can purchase a comb set separately. It does, however, come with a one-year warranty and a tube of blade oil.
Positive Amazon review: “These are seriously some of the best clippers you can buy. Andis is a highly reputable brand and these are a fantastic price. They are great for all coat types (seriously, they are) and they are even great for cats! They are not super loud, which I like when it comes to grooming cats or puppies.”
2. A Budget Clipper For Light To Medium Coats
Best for: Light to medium coats
Wahl's Professional Animal Deluxe U-Clip clipper is a solid budget-friendly choice for touch-ups between visits to the groomer. It comes with everything you might need to get started, including attachment combs, stainless steel scissors, a styling comb, a storage case, a styling apron, a blade guard, and even a grooming how-to DVD. The electromagnetic motor only has one speed, 7,200 SPM — but while its SPM is high, the manufacturer doesn't recommend it for thick fur. (Magnetic motors are typically cheaper, but they tend not to be as good for thick fur as rotary motors.) If your pup is particularly sensitive to sounds, they might not appreciate how loud it is, according to reviewers — 7,200 SPM is well above the recommended range, so it's definitely not for dogs who are skittish about noise.
The clipper weighs 1 pound, features an 8-foot cord, and comes with a two-year warranty. If you're on the fence, you can take it for a test run with Wahl's 30-day satisfaction guarantee.
Positive Amazon review: “I have a new toy poodle puppy and wanted to be able to do touch-ups on feet and hiney between grooming visits. For the price – these clippers are great!!! They’re quiet and come with a lot of accessories that you need for grooming and upkeep.”
3. A Lightweight Cordless Clipper
Best for: All coat types
At just over a half a pound, the Wahl Bravura lithium-ion clipper doesn't weigh much at all. The cordless design makes it easy to transport and might make it easier to groom hard-to-reach areas. It has a 5,500-SPM rotary motor with just one speed, and Constant Speed Control that optimizes power and torque. That said, while 5,500 SPM provides lots of power, it is higher than the recommended range — so like the Wahl Professional clipper, it's not ideal for dogs who are sensitive to noise. The easy-to-use blade adjusts between sizes #9, #10, #15, #30, and #40. The manufacturer says this clipper is ideal for feet, face, and finish work.
The rechargeable lithium-ion battery lasts up to 90 minutes and takes about an hour to recharge, but you can always opt to plug in the cord and continue as if it's a corded model. All in all, this clipper is the priciest on the list, and probably isn't necessary for most pet owners just looking to do occasional touch-ups, but if you prefer a lightweight or cordless clipper and you can spend the extra bucks, you'll likely find a lot to appreciate about the Bravura. You can grab it in several different colors, ranging from sleek gunmetal to vibrant turquoise.
Positive Amazon review: “I absolutely love this clipper. This is my second one. It replaced my first one which lasted two years. I'm a professional dog and cat groomer and [...]. I've used it on everything from tiny Yorkies to full blown haircuts on golden doodle.”
4. A Narrow Grooming Trimmer For Sensitive Areas
If you find grooming sensitive areas like paws a challenge, you might want to try a trimmer like this MaikcQ dog clipper. It has a narrow head to offer you more precise control, and its quiet motor emits under 60 decibels of sound (about the volume of normal conversation), though the manufacturer doesn't provide an SPM. The mini clipper can also be helpful for trimming dog ears and faces, according to reviewers.
The trimmer has two speeds and the battery lasts up to 4 hours and charges with an included USB cable. It also comes with a comb attachment and bottle of oil (for maintenance). It has a one-year warranty, or you can return it within 30 days for a full refund. It's available in two colors. The MaikcQ clipper is easy on the wallet, but if you have a bigger budget, you can also opt to check out the Wahl BravMini+.
Positive Amazon review: “A great little clipper overall. Very light weight, easy to use and well built. And very tiny so it gets into all the small places, like between the toes and paw pads. All at a great price!”
Also Great: A Noise-Free Manual Grooming Kit
If your dog is nervous around electric clippers, you may want to opt for a manual approach. The Scaredy Cut grooming kit features scissors that incorporate clipper combs to make sure you keep control of the scissors as you trim. In addition to the scissors, the kit includes seven combs (which allow you to cut to lengths between 1/2 inch and 1 inch), four finger inserts (which can help you achieve a comfortable fit for the scissors), two comb organizers, a grooming guide, and a storage bag. If you require different tools or configurations of tools, the set also comes in a few variations.
Positive Amazon review: “My dogs love the noiseless cut or trim. The variety of comb sizes makes getting the ideal cut a breeze. I first purchased an electric razor, but after much frustration at the lack of cutting ease and the nervousness of our dogs, I decided to give Scaredy Cut a try. Man, am I glad I did.”