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The Furminator

Shelby's shedding is driving us nuts, so I looked up the closest groomers who use the Furminator process, which promises 60% less shedding. Aussie Pet Mobile was the closest one, and they actually drive up to our door with their trailer, and groom the dog there. I called them twice, and got two very helpful, friendly people on the other end to answer my questions.

1. Does Furminator work well on short haired dogs?
2. How long does it take?
3. How long do the results last?
4. How do you get clean water into the trailer?

To begin, the Furminator does apparently work on shirt haired dogs. It's a special shampoo, conditioner, and lot of elbow grease to brush and scrub all the loose hair off of the dog. I think that if your dog has an undercoat, that there might be some trimming of the undercoat, but they didn't do that to Shelby.

It takes about 1 hour, and because hairgrowth has a relatively long cycle, they informed me that we might need to Furminate her again in 4-6 weeks for longer lasting results. But it really depends on where she is in her hair growth. For the record, Shelby was 2 weeks into her molting period.

Since it's a trailer, they basically drive up to your house, plug into your outdoor electric outlet, and hookup to the outside hose. The heater on the trailer warms up the water.

I booked an appointment, and was lucky that they were able to come the very next day, though in some cases it might be up to a week. Shelby's never been groomed by a professional before, so this should be an interesting event for all of us.

I was away at work, so Steven was nice enough to take pictures of the process. There were a selection of muzzles on board for unruly dogs that didn't want to be groomed, but I was told that Shelby was very good, and she and the groomer got along great. Which is good, because Shelby can't wear a muzzle anyway — no nose.

It started with a lot of brushing, and then an ear cleaning.

Followed by a bath with Furminator shampoo and conditioner.

And then a vigourous blow dry to blast the loose hair off of her.

There was a lot of loose hair. Steven tells me that this is only half of it. The groomer blew the rest of it off the grooming table with the dryer.

At some point, Shelby realized Steven had gone inside the house. She peeked out the trailer window to look for him.

Shelby got a treat afterwards, and she proceeded to walk around with it in her mouth, giving the groomer a good laugh.

They told us that for the first 24 hours to expect shedding to continue, but that it should dramatically reduce after that. Despite being very excited about trying out the Furminator, I tried to keep my expectations low because we wouldn't see the full effects immediately. But I must say, that I did notice an immediate difference. I was wearing a black jacket when I gave Shelby a big hug, and miraculously, it was still a black jacket after the hug. She looked great, and she smelled so nice too! The smell lasted about 2 days, and the shedding was much less severe for about 3-4 days. After that, Shelby's coat was back to her old ways. The shedding was something between her light shedding phase, and her heavy molting phase. They did tell us that it takes 2 treatments to really get the full hair growth cycle, and keep in mind, Shelby was in her full "drive us nuts" shedding phase when we did this.

We paid full price, $70.00 for a Shelby-sized dog, which is quite hefty for us, considering that a bath usually costs as much as a handful of shampoo. Steven and I were really impressed with Aussie Mobile Pet Grooming. They were really friendly and knowledgable, and I can't say that every business that operates out of a trailer is so professional. :) As for the Furminator, I was really hoping the effects would last a bit longer. However, we will have to do this again in about 4-6 weeks for a proper evaluation, so please check back then.

May 13, 2005 | Permalink


Shelby looks very beautiful. I think as pug owners we all have to come to terms with the shedding issue. I like to wear black clothes and our little fawn pug's hairs have become my "fasion accessories". To make it fair for my lighter colored clothes, we just adoped a black pug. Now we can have beautiful pug hair accessories with all of our clothing!

Posted by: diana | May 13, 2005 6:32:15 AM

The SHEDDING! This is my first summer with a pug and I cannot believe the amount of hair this dog can churn out. Brushing doesn't help. Bathing doesn't help. I'm considering applying a nice coat of shellac. That should do it. But I'm anxious to hear how your approach works out.

Posted by: Jen | May 13, 2005 10:09:50 AM

QVC sells a pet brush called the furminator. I bought one to use on my two pugs. It works great! You can't believe the hair that comes off them. It greatly reduces the amount of shedding. You have to be faithful about it and brush them at leasr twice a week.It cost about $30 which is a whole lot cheaper than $70!
p.s. Your Shelby and my female, Tonka could be twins. Did you get Shelby at Midnight Acres Farm?

Posted by: Rosemary | May 13, 2005 2:12:54 PM

For some reason, the brush wasn't used on Shelby, and I think typically it's part of the furminator process. It's specially designed to remove the undercoat, which I guess is the part that sheds. I thought maybe they didn't use it because she had a short coat. I've ordered in on QVC, and when it arrives, I'll review it on the site.

Posted by: Winnie | May 15, 2005 9:15:20 AM

we just love all your pugs pics,,,,ty for everything.....lyn and vin dalton

Posted by: rudy | May 15, 2005 5:15:28 PM

We have 2 Pugs. Last Summer, the shedding was out of control. We learned that Pugs can actually get a shave. We tried it on both. The larger one looks great and the smaller one came out a little spotty. The shave cuts down dramatically on the amount of hair and costs about $20 per shave once a month.

Posted by: Lance | May 16, 2005 6:00:40 AM

Regarding muzzling a Pug, the joke in our household is if your Pug needs a muzzle you would have to use a Hannibal Lecter style face mask. My husband and I thought that was hilarious, imagining a Pug being wheeled around on an upright gurney w/a face mask. Hmmm, maybe with Photoshop you could make that happen...

Posted by: Mikelle | May 16, 2005 12:34:34 PM

We take Buddha to a groomer in town that uses a similar process called Shed X. It costs $32 and lasts about four weeks. It's worth it! I had to reschedule an appointment once and within a week I was calling to see if I could get him in that day!

Posted by: Melissa | Jul 2, 2005 1:43:56 PM

I love your website and regularly check it to see how Shelby is doing. Our pug, Winston, sheds like crazy also and we are trying every method in the book to stop it. I am considering buying a furminator and the feedback on the website has really helped. Thanks!

Posted by: Sheyda | Oct 24, 2005 9:56:36 PM

I purchased the whole Furminator kit on Amazon for like $75 dollars. I bathed my Pug Uno last night, then used the Conditioner that came with it and then Combed him out with the Furminator deshedding tool. It comes with treats as well, and he gets 2 of those a day, plus I switched his food to the Nutro which is suppose to be good for the coat. I will be happy to go through this once a week if it helps enough. I will keep you posted.

Posted by: Jay | Apr 16, 2006 2:04:37 PM

In response to the muzzle comment, we've been taking our pug on the city bus for the last few weeks with no issues. Today, we went to the park on the bus...and when we tried to go back home, we went through three busses that said we had to muzzle him! Luckily there was a pet store nearby, but none of them even fit at all. It is ridiculous. I got one that barely stays on, just long enough to pass the driver, and then falls off again!

and the pug HATES it!

Posted by: coral | Jul 6, 2006 10:47:35 PM

awww i want to have lucy do this i bet she would hate me omg i have to call them lol her shedding is driving me nuts and every1 else nuts latley so ill give it a try!!!!

Posted by: Karelle | Jul 8, 2006 1:04:29 AM

Shelby looks just fabulous. I use a method similar to the Furminator, but I charge less. I've been doing the mobile grooming thing for about 4 years and find that people really do like the convenience. I know I love being with the dogs and meeting the people, too. Pugs are one of my favorites and should not be made to wear muzzles with their brachycephalic faces. Can be dangerous to their breathing.

Posted by: Diana | Nov 30, 2006 8:44:35 PM

Living in Tokyo, we have a Pug named Day-bis and just ordered the FURminator (small blue brush). We will let you know how it works. We want him to look his best in May when we go to an "All Japan Pug Meeting". We can't wait.

Posted by: Josh Daugherty | Apr 1, 2007 3:55:01 PM

I found your blog through a Google search, because I was curious to see if other Pug owners found the Furminator brush as helpful as I do.

The pictures of Shelby's bath are wonderful, she looks so forlorn! My own Pug will walk around with a treat sticking out of her mouth, too - or a particularly toothsome toy.

Did you ever buy a Furminator for Shelby? I don't see a search feature on the blog or I would look for a later Furminator post. I find my Furminator REALLY helpful, Hazel sheds handfuls of fur in the summer!

Posted by: Lori Fury | Jun 15, 2008 8:53:38 AM

Instead of going with a secound round of the treatment, we bought the firminator shampoo, conditioner, and brush at the store. It works pretty well, though I do think that the secret ingredient is elbow grease. :)

Posted by: Winnie | Jun 15, 2008 12:04:08 PM

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