How to clean a dog slicker brush

So, you have had your slicker brush for a while now and every time you go to use it…You can’t help but notice how dirty it has gotten.

There is hair all matted and tangled inside of it and the dirt around the edges is simply getting out of control.

Now, you could simply do what you always do and just replace it every so often, but that just doesn’t cut it as you may not be able to find the same one again.

image of slicker brush

Whilst this brush is dirty, it still seems to do a great job. I know you wish you could simply clean it in order to get it back to being brand new again.

Well, I certainly know as that’s exactly how I felt when I faced this situation…and it honestly didn’t take a lot to fix it.

With dogs skin, you have got to be so careful with what you use on them. By purchasing some random brush or cleaning products, may do more damage than good. But, don’t worry as I have got you covered here in this post as today you’re going to learn exactly how to clean all your dog brushes “THE RIGHT WAY!”

Before we get into the cleaning part I just want to clear up what a slicker brush is for those of you who have all these brushes and may not know the difference. I also want to make sure that by the time you finish reading this post, you will know exactly how to clean a dog with a slicker brush.

Firstly, What is a slicker brush?

A slicker brush is a dog grooming tool that is used to untangle and de-matt loose hair. They come in a commonly found rectangular shape with fine wire bristles that are packed closely together.

Whilst combs and other brushes may get out fur, the primary job of a slicker is to target debris and dirt in the outer coats of your pet.

Now, whilst I could continue to explain this in a professional jargon manner…here’s an image to give you an idea:

dog brush

As you can see its nothing fancy, it’s just a brush that does the job in getting your dogs dirt and grub out of their coat. You have probably used this brush before if you are reading this post. But I have to explain everything thoroughly as there may be some of us that may not know what it is.

Can you clean all dog brushes or just some?

When you first become a parent of any sort you are going to hear story upon story about how you cant do this and you can’t do that! Whether it’s a new pet or a new baby, you will seem to find that everyone becomes an expert in the blink of an eye.

And to be completely honest, it’s not coming from a bad place at all. But some people are just speaking on things they have heard rather than what actually works. If I were to sum myself up in one word it would be ‘practical.’ Because that’s exactly how I look upon most things in life.

When it comes to cleaning a dog brush you may hear people give you bogus stories about which ones are ok to clean and what isn’t. Now that we got that over and done with, I am here to tell you that you can clean any brush you like no matter the size or shape!

The only thing you will need to be mindful of is the material of the brush and the product you use to clean it. But do not worry as I will explain all of that important stuff in the rest of this post.

Why do you need to wash a dog brush?

Like with anything that is excessively used, brushes are bound to wind up with some dirt and grub over time. Not only that but when you’re using it to clean your dog you will notice that they are picking up all sorts, whether they are out in the garden or going for a walk down the street.

Now, whilst this post is targeted around how to clean your brush, there is no real problem with just buying a brand new one. But for the purpose of this post, that is not what we are here to discuss as this is just a cleaning brush that you want to reuse.

The main reason to clean any brush is that it gets dirty. And by using a dry brush on your dog can lead to skin disorders and problems in the future. Using clean tools on your dog is just as important as providing them with a clean environment. So make sure not to overlook this step when taking on parenthood.

So, now your thinking…Ok already let’s get to the nitty-gritty and talk about how to clean a brush. And so in the following section, we are going to do just that…

Products you will need to clean a slicker brush

The only products you will need are a bowl of hot water, a bottle of dog shampoo, a toothbrush, gloves (optional), a comb, and of course a brush to clean.

Once you have got all of that ready we can move onto the next step on how to use all 3 to end up with a set of clean brushes. So, get all of those tools and then return here to continue on to the next section.

Read Also: >> Top oatmeal shampoos for dogs

How to clean a dog brush

There are a few simple steps to cleaning a dog brush and by the end of it, you will be left with some beautiful looking brushes that work like new. I’m going to take you through this step by step:

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And that’s all there is to the steps that you need to follow. Once you have done this you are all finished. But as we have used shampoo for this, there may be some of you who want to actually disinfect the brushes.

And to do that, I have got something that will work well.

How to disinfect a dog brush

So in the previous section, we discussed how to clean a dog slicker brush or any brush at that by using a bowl of hot water and dog shampoo. But what if you want to be sure that the brush is clean through and through? Well, there is a way to do that too.

Firstly, you will need to make sure that the product you are using is suitable for cleaning tools that will be used on a dogs skin. I recommend that you get a bottle of KennelSol. This stuff is amazing and it works like a treat.

KennelSol Dog Crate Cleaner and Disinfectant | Cleaning Concentrate, Kills Bacteria & Viruses, Parvo...
  • EFFECTIVE ONE-STEP CLEANER AND DISINFECTANT FOR HOME OR KENNEL- KennelSol is a one-step cleaning liquid product and disinfectant specially formulated to safely clean home pet areas and even animal care facilities. The concentrated formula knocks out pathogens in one easy labor-saving step.
  • WORKS AGAINST VIRUSES, BACTERIA, FUNGI, EVEN CANINE PARVOVIRUS - KennelSol is the ideal disinfectant cleaner for both pet owners and animal care professionals. KennelSol makes it easy to kill off pathogens with several germicidal ingredients, making it the only broad-spectrum, animal-safe kennel cleaner and deodorizer you need.
  • LEAVES YOUR DOG CRATE SMELLING FRESH AND ODOR-FREE - Unlike other pet cleaning supplies, KennelSol offers an abundant level of detergent and odor control which makes it more than just a kennel disinfectant cleaner. The fresh wintergreen fragrance it leaves behind keeps your dog crate or kennel smelling fresh and clean.
  • SAFE AND GENTLE KENNEL CLEANER AND DISINFECTANT - Our one-step germicidal cleaner is safe and gentle for home use and powerful enough to kill troubling conditions like kennel cough, staph infection, E.Coli and other nasty viruses. It’s neutral pH level works efficiently and safely without any additional rinsing, retains strength even in hard water, and is safe for clothing and safe around dogs, cats, and other animals.
  • EPA REGISTERED - KennelSol is the ideal sanitizer and deodorizer to cleanse any area where animal debris, germs and dander are present. Registered with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), KennelSol can kill a broad spectrum of pathogens, including many important to the animal care industry. It is not just effective against viruses (including Canine Parvovirus), bacteria, and fungi, it is also the right choice for you and your pet environment.

This product has been made to be noncorrosive and so it is a great way to clean any tools that you are using on your dog. It’s effective against bacteria and fungi too, so you can be reassured that there will be no germs creeping in when cleaning with this product.

I always keep a bottle of this in the house as you will simply never know when you need it. And it is so big that you never end up having to buy a new one for a long old-time. It’s definitely a win-win situation.

Now, if you decide to use this then make sure to repeat the steps from before but add a little bit of this to the water in order to disinfect the tools. That means that this is not to be used on its own, but instead to be added to the bowl of water that you have been instructed to use in the previous section.

How do I keep my dog clean without bathing them every day?

In order to keep your dog clean without bathing them every day, you will need to brush them down daily to get rid of any muck they may pick up outside. Whilst bathing is a great option for every few weeks or so, it could actually do more damage than good if done too often.

For that purpose, I recommend you get yourself a slicker brush and comb to make sure that you can maintain your dog on a daily basis. It’s super important to your dog’s health by keeping them clean, and remember a healthy dog is a happy dog. So take of them well and they will take care of you in return.

What are the best products to use?

Hands down there is only one product that I stand by for this job and that is KennelSol. I use this religiously for anything to do with cleaning tools for golden retriever Bella, and so far I have had some amazing results.

Not only that, but you get such a huge bottle that seems like the stuff lasts forever. It’s 100% great value for money.

wash a brush

How often do you need to clean a dog brush?

You should be cleaning your dog brushes every month, but this will all depend on how often you use them. Some people brush their dogs down daily while others do so every few days or so.

A great indication is to simply look at the brush when it starts to become dirty and then clean it when you can visibly see it needs doing. And if you know that your dog is experiencing some type of skin disorder, you should follow the veterinarian’s instructions on how often you should be cleaning them.

You need to make sure to let them know of any products that you are using to, as they will need to be approved in such situations.


Now you know how to clean a dog slicker brush with ease. And that’s just it, it’s honestly as easy as following a few steps. I recommend that you make sure to clean them on a regular basis, such as once per month.

That way you know that you are providing your pup the best care when it comes to keeping them clean.

Rachael Summers

Rachael Summers

Rachael Summers is the Founder and Senior Editor at Dig Doggy. She is a lifelong canine enthusiast and adores dogs of all shapes and sizes! Rachael also loves iced coffee, hammocks, and puppy-cuddling!

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Rachael Summers

Rachael Summers

Rachael Summers is the Founder and Senior Editor at Dig Doggy. She is a lifelong canine enthusiast and adores dogs of all shapes and sizes! Rachael also loves iced coffee, hammocks, and puppy-cuddling!

About Dig Doggy

DigDoggy® is a free resource for dog owners, with everything from expert product reviews to trusted pet care advice.

All of our reviews and recommendations are based on unbiased research by our editorial team. Read more about us.

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