A cross between an Irish Setter and a (usually Standard) Poodle, Irish Doodles are a new but increasingly popular addition to the Doodle clan. These gorgeous hounds are as active as they are fun, and they will adore spending as much time as you’ll allow them out of doors where, more often than not, they will get just as filthy and muddy as they can!
No fear, though. This doesn’t (and actually definitely shouldn’t!) mean extra baths. A vigorous brush-through will divest them of dirt, dander, and loose hair, too – meaning far less of it about the house if you happen to have a shedding Irish Doodle variety – bonus! That being said, you will need the right tools for the job. The best brush for your Irish Doodle (and a comb) discussed below are very much the right tools for the job!
Table of Contents
- Irish Doodle Coat Types: A Quick Overview
- Best Brush for Your Irish Doodle: Buyer’s Guide
- Best Brushes For Irish Doodles: Reviews
- Honorable Mentions: Other Highly Recommended Brushes
- Tips for Grooming Your Irish Doodle
- Best Brush for Irish Doodle: Frequently Asked Questions
- Best Brush for Irish Doodle: Final Thoughts
Our Top 2 Brushes (and a Comb) Doodle Owners Love
If you’re confident you know what kind of brush you’re looking for and want to skip right to the recommendations, here they are. However, if you’d like to learn a little more about the best way to care for your pet’s coat and what makes these the best tools for the job, then keep reading.
A top-quality brush perfect for dealing with thickly wavy and curly Doodle coats, it reaches deep down, removing dirt, dander, and dead coat to avoid matting and shedding.
For straight and lightly wavy coats, CC’s Pin Brush is gentle yet effective at handling knots and distributing the natural oils through the coat that keeps it shiny and healthy.
An asset to every grooming kit, the Andis Steel Comb can be used to unpick tougher tangles in hard-to-reach areas and also for fluffing and finishing for a salon-quality groom.
Irish Doodle Coat Types: A Quick Overview
With two breeds in the mix, it’s not easy to predict what your soon-to-be or newly-acquired Irish Doodle’s adult coat will be like. The best thing to do is take a look at the coats that their parent pups have and then work out how much of their genetics they get from each one (based on their generation) with the aim of predicting the challenges ahead of you in terms of coat care.
That long, luxurious russet-colored coat is said to be the Irish Setter’s crowning glory. And while personality naturally comes first with us always(!), it cannot be denied that these are genuinely stunning dogs. Not every potential Irish Doodle owner will be happy to hear, however, that Irish Setters have double-layered coats, meaning they are moderate shedders, and this is certainly something they could pass along to their offspring.
The Poodle coat, on the other hand, is of the ultra-desirable non-shed variety. However, the mistake most people make is thinking that this means these dogs are super low maintenance. In fact, quite the reverse is true. Those luscious Poodle curls create the perfect environment for trapping all kinds of dirt, as well as dander and loose coat which gets twisted up, forming knots and tangles quick as a flash.
Popular Brush Types
Now that you’ve got some idea of what you might expect from your pup’s coat, you can start looking at the brush that might be best for them. While there are a ton of types out there, there are two main ones that work best for all the variations of the Doodle coat:
These are probably the best known of all the dog brushes because they are wonderfully versatile. They are equally great at tackling tangles as they are at removing dead coat. Slicker brushes tend to be rectangular in shape with angled pins that are quite tightly packed together. As you can cover quite a larger surface area with a single stroke, you can usually get your pup all groomed and neat in no time at all with one of these handy tools.
For longer, straight, or slightly wavy-coated dogs, pin brushes make a lot more sense. These brushes can deal with some level of tangle and shed (although they aren’t on the slicker’s level for this). They also help with neatening the coat and keeping both hair and skin healthy by dispersing the natural oils throughout your pup’s it. The design is very similar to a human hairbrush with a round head, a long handle, and more widely distributed pins.
Obviously, not a brush (and not to be used in place of one unless your pal has the shortest of short hair), a comb has many uses in a complete groom. First of all, they can really help with removing tight knots, especially if they are located in awkward places such as in the armpits, behind the ears, and around the tail. They are also great for picking up left-behind loose hairs and general fluffing and finishing. When choosing a comb, the simpler, the better, is a good rule of thumb.
Best Brush for Your Irish Doodle: Buyer’s Guide
Aside from choosing a brush based on its main functions, there are a few other things to think about. With hundreds of available slickers, pin brushes, and combs, variations in style and how they’re made can mean significant differences in both how well they work and how long they last.
All types of brushes differ in a few key ways. Firstly, both pin density and length tend to vary, and you need to pay attention to both of these features. More tightly packed-together pins will be better for getting rid of the most dead coat possible. However, for dogs with particularly long or thick (straighter) coats, this could mean plenty of painful pulling, which you’ll want to avoid if you ever want your hound to feel comfortable with being brushed.
Regarding length, you want something that will reach right through your pup’s coat rather than simply gliding across the top layer and missing all the tangles that lurk beneath. If you’re looking to keep their hair on the short side, then too-long pins (especially if they aren’t polished or come equipped with plastic or rubber tips) will drag along the skin, causing scratches and irritation – again, not good!
It goes without saying that you want to be on the lookout for a solidly made brush. Where’s the fun in shelling out dosh for a product that lasts no time at all? Look for top-quality materials – be they plastic or wood and always ensure any brush or comb has stainless steel pins or teeth, so rusting isn’t an issue. Before using the brush on your dog, check how it feels on the underside of your arm, do any parts of it scratch, for instance?
Aside from a kind design for your pup, an ergonomic handle can really help make grooming a much nicer affair. It might be ridged, curved, or include rubber grips for extra traction, but whatever the style, a well-thought-out handle will give you better control of the brush and will protect you from hand and wrist fatigue when using it for longer periods or dealing with particularly challenging patches of coat.
Best Brushes For Irish Doodles: Reviews
Best for Curly/Wavy Coats
Chris Christensen Big G Slicker Brush
Developed with long, tangle-prone Poodle and Doodle-like coats in mind, the Big G Slicker Brush features 40% more pins than the best-selling Big K of the same brand. The beauty of these extra pins is that they really do leave nothing behind, especially because they are also longer than your average slicker pins and angled too. This brush gets right down into the coat and removes everything you don’t want to be there – but, with the flexible cushion and filed down tips, it does this in a nicer way than most other brushes.
Reviews for this product, as expected, are overwhelmingly positive across different platforms. This come does to both the quality of the brush and its functionality. Many of the pet parents here have Doodles, and most comment that the Big G makes tons of difference compared to cheaper alternatives. Not only is the brush effective on knots and shed alike, but, as it’s kind to the skin, many dogs seem to deal much better with being groomed.
This truly is an amazing brush for both professional groomers and dog owners alike. It does exactly what it says on the tin. Don’t believe us? Check the reviews.
The big sticking point for many who encounter this brush for the first time is the price – which may seem a little extreme. Just keep in mind that this brush will last and last.
Best for Straight/Wavy Coats
Chris Christensen Oval (or Oblong) Pin Brush
Now, the slicker is the best choice for coats that sit towards the more Poodle side of things. However, if your pup seems to take more after the Irish Setter, you’ll want to check out the Pin Brush option. This versatile brush can easily mimic a professional-looking groom without causing unnecessary damage to more delicate coats. The top-quality stainless steel pins (30% more than most other pin brushes) are long and polished to glide through hair with ease, effortlessly dealing with any tangles that lie in its way.
Again reviews are fab, with purchasers being impressed with how comfortable the brush feels to hold as well as what it does for their pet’s coat. The pins are robust enough to survive the thickest of coats while still being kind to skin, which, again, makes it more popular than alternatives among dogs. While it is up among the pricier options as far as brushes go, the general consensus seems to be that what you get from this product very much makes up for the money spent on it.
A great multi-use brush that is perfect not just for regular brushing but for helping your pup feel better about being groomed. It is well made and designed with both the comfort of dog and owner in mind.
The pin brush isn’t going to be anywhere near as effective as the slicker on knots and matting – that’s not what it’s designed for. You’ll need a comb (and possibly some doggy detangler) for this.
Best for All Coats
Andis Pet Steel Comb
Great for curly coats, wavy coats, straight coats, short coats, and long coats… a good-quality comb is a must-have item for every pet parent. And Andis Steel Comb is certainly good quality with its simple stainless steel construction that is all function and none of those pesky frills that do nothing but get caught up in your pet’s hair. With a wider and narrower-spaced teeth side, you can use it for just about anything you can think of using a comb for. It can be used to tackle knots, remove loose hair and is great for finishing, fluffing, and dealing with furnishings too.
For the most part, those who have purchased this comb have been extremely pleased with it. Comments suggest that it is as good for working out mats as for more general combing. The advantage of a comb is that most dogs are more comfortable with being combed rather than brushed, especially when it comes to their more sensitive areas, such as around the head or tail, and this comb is well designed for dealing with both. It is sturdy enough to cope with thick and even double-layered coats.
Simple, inexpensive, versatile, and great for whatever you need it for. This is the kind of product where you will get it and wonder why you never thought of buying it before.
If you’re using this to frequently go over the entire coat of particularly large or thick-coated Irish Doodles, you might suffer from hand fatigue as this comb doesn’t have a handle.
Honorable Mentions: Other Highly Recommended Brushes
Artero Double Flexible Slicker
If you like the features of the Big G but are a little too put off by the price, then you might also take a look at this Slicker Brush. It’s a little different in both design and function, but pet owners seem to love it.
Safari Wire Pin Brush for Dogs
The pin brush is a possible alternative to the CC Pin Brush. The brush style is very much the same, with the longer, slightly denser pins, the flexible cushion, and the lightweight wooden construction.
Tips for Grooming Your Irish Doodle
You’ve got the right equipment picked out and the best brush for your Irish Doodle, and you’re good to go. Here are a few tips for grooming your Irish Doodle the right way:
Tips 1) Begin Early
If you want your pup to feel comfortable with being groomed, it’s good to get them used to being handled, and to brushes and combs, right from day one. Allow them time to give the brushes a good sniff and a (little) chew if they want, and then get right to it.
Tip 2) Pick The Right Time
If your pal is full of energy and running all about the place, then they are unlikely to be happy to stand around while you brush them. It’s a much better idea to take your Dood for a nice, long walk to get rid of their excess energy before you settle into grooming them.
Tip 3) Establish A Routine
While dogs tend to like knowing what’s coming, establishing a grooming routine is more about you than it is about them. If you have a specific time that you brush your pet each day (or every other day), say directly after their morning or evening walk, it’s much easier to stick to that.
Tip 4) Keep Up With Other Tasks
Alongside caring for your pup’s coat, a few more things go into keeping them happy and healthy that you might not have thought of. You’ll need to tackle a few other tasks like nail trims, expressing anal glands, teeth brushing, ear cleaning, removing tear stains, and coat cuts.
Unsure about doing any of these? Click the links to see our handy how-to guides.
Best Brush for Irish Doodle: Frequently Asked Questions
The kind of brush you will need for your Irish Doodle depends on their specific coat. They could inherit a curly coat from their Poodle side, a double coat from their Irish Setter side, or, chances are, they will wind up with something in between. As each of these coats has different issues, they require different tools for dealing with them, as outlined above.
Not only do you absolutely need to brush your Irish Doodle, but this is something you are going to have to do on a very regular basis – maybe even daily. If you don’t, tangles and knots will accumulate in their coat, which will lead to the kind of mats that, when you finally attempt to groom them, will be impossible to remove without shaving.
If you’re looking to outsource your pup’s coat maintenance to the pros, then you can expect to pay somewhere in the ballpark of $40-100 based on the size of your dog. As you will need to get them thoroughly groomed every 6-8 weeks, at the very least, you’re looking at forking out around $500-600 per year.
Best Brush for Irish Doodle: Final Thoughts
Finding the right brush for your Doodle is never an easy task. Unlike many other breeds of dog that take very little looking after in the coat department at least, Doodles require a fair bit of maintenance, especially the ones with the longer coats. As Irish Doodles get long-haired genes from both their pedigree parents, you can expect to spend a lot of time dealing with various coat issues. However, having a high-quality brush specifically designed for your pup’s coat will save you a great deal of time and energy that you can instead spend on giving them the love and attention they crave from their owners.