Bernedoodles are beautiful, large and energetic Poodle Mix breeds. A combination of the Bernese Mountain Dog and Poodle. They have some unique challenges when it comes to grooming.
Your beautiful Bernedoodle may start off as a small puppy, but they can get quite large. Bernedoodles also inherit an often low-shedding coat from the Poodle. The issue for Bernedoodle owners is the sheer volume of the beautiful coat to look after.
This means two challenges for Bernedoodle coats
- Finding a durable best brush for a Bernedoodle
- Efficiently and easily grooming such a large (and beautiful coat)
- And combatting matting and tangles
But what exactly is the best brush for Bernedoodle dogs and puppies?
Having a well-groomed Bernedoodle needs a foundation of excellent brushing. Brushing comes down to the type of brush, the method, and the frequency. I asked the experts, breeders and actual owners to find the easiest at-home grooming and brushing regime for Bernedoodles.
Spoiler alert: If you want the products and don’t have time to read the review
- The best slicker brush by a distance is the Chris Christensen Large Long Pin Slicker Brush. A premium product that you should be able to buy once only as an investment.
- A budget-friendly slicker brush with reasonable build quality by Andis
- And you should also just straight up buy the hands down best steel comb for Bernedoodles by Andis
In this article we list the tried and tested best slicker brush for Bernedoodles, and two close runners up. There is a single stand-out best comb for Bernedoodles, and one interesting extra bit of equipment you might not expect.
Author note: We tested and reviewed and found the best shampoos for Bernedoodles in our extensive Bernedoodle shampoo review article. Spoiler – the best Bernedoodle shampoo according to our wash test and owners surveyed was Nootie Cherry Blossom Pet Shampoo. You can read about the 5 Best Bernedoodle shampoos in our comprehensive review guide.
Why Matting Matters for Bernedoodles
Poodles and Bernese Mountain Dogs are known to be both clever and kind. Their brainpower is impressive. But these braniacs are even better known for their beauty.
Many Bernedoodles carry the amazing tri-colour coat. Jet black, clear white, and a beautiful splash of rust. Others come in dynamite shades of black, white, brown, and even sometimes red.
All Bernedoodles and Australian Bernedoodles have a very soft coat. F1b Bernedoodles and Australian Bernedoodles are notably low shedding. For some dogs they don’t shed at all! Much of the shedding capacity is related to the percentage of Poodle genetics present. The higher the Poodle percentage, the close the coat is to that of a Poodle.
A non-shedding dog will hands down require more maintenance than a shedding dog. Every single time, every day of the week. If you get a Bernedoodle, prepare yourself for extra grooming at-home and possibly at a groomer as well.
The main type of extra grooming a Bernedoodle will need is matting prevention.
If you have owned any Poodle mix breed, you will have fought a hard battle with mats in the fur. It is part of the package of a non-shedding dog with a luscious curly or wavy Poodle style coat.
Light matting can be easily dealt with at home. Heavy matting can require a shavedown or extensive (and expensive) professional grooming. Preventing matting or limited it to light spots will save you money.
How Often Do I Need To Brush My Bernedoodle?
If you have a Bernedoodle you have been blessed with an amazing, friendly, low-shedding companion. Think of how much you love your Bernedoodle! Party of your family right?
I am writing such upbeat things because I am about to drop some information that time-poor humans might not want to hear.
You need to brush your Bernedoodle every single day.
Not thrilled about hearing that? Well you need to know. There are so many amazing things about Bernedoodles but frequent brushing is a must.
It does not have to take long but for best results and to avoid troubles with the coat you will need to brush your Bernedoodle or Australian Bernedoodles daily.
Preventing and Fixing Matting for Bernedoodles
We are so lucky with Bernedoodles that the cure for coat mats is also the prevention. Brushing!
- Regularly brushing will prevent mats from occurring
- Frequent brushing reduces the severity of mats and tangles
- Light matting can be fixed by brushing with the correct type of brush
The parts of a Bernedoodle most likely to get the mats or tangles are any area of friction. Think about the collar, harness, under each leg, ears, and even around the butt.
Bernedoodles can get mats and tangles anywhere though you will need to check all spots even the back or underbelly.
A test you can do at home even if you don’t have the correct brushes yet is easy. Use your fingers! For a Bernedoodle coat you should be able to run your fingers everywhere without finding any lumps. If you do find a lump or clump of hair, try and tease it apart with your fingers. If it cannot be done easily, then your Bernedoodle has matts or tangles that need to be dealt with.
There are just two types of brushes you will need to care for your Bernedoodle. Well, one is a brush and one is a comb.
The main brush you will need is a slicker brush.
What is a Slicker Brush, and Why Is It Needed?
Bernedoodles need daily brushing. Any type of daily brushing will help, but using the correct tools will make a tremendous difference. Using a cheaply made slicker or pin brush might feel similar, but you will struggle to get results.
Knock off slicker brushes are unlikely to work as well, are likely to bend or break, and can give the dog brush burn. Brush burn is friction from having to work an incorrect brush too hard and damaging the dog skin. Something that must be avoided.
You will need a good slicker brush. But what exactly is a slicker brush?
A slicker brush is a grooming tool commonly used for many breeds of dogs and cats. It has the primary purpose of removing loose hair and mats or tangles from the fur. A typical slicker brush is rectangular in shape with many fine wire bristles packed together. Hundreds of these pins work together to demat your pets coat. The bristles will either be angled or have plastic nubs on them to safeguard the skin.
If you use a slicker brush correctly it cannot hurt or harm your Bernedoodle. But incorrect use or a cheaply made slicker that breaks can cause distress or pull at your dogs skin.
Qualities of a Good Slicker Brush
If you are looking to buy a slicker brush go for quality. Buy once and look after it. I am quite frugal (I have some money saving Bernedoodle grooming tips later in this article) but this is one of the items where quality and longevity provide the best value.
When investing in a slicker brush for your dog
- Look for smooth flexible pins. The pins need to be thin and bendy. Durable but also bendable pins will modulate the pressure for your dog, which limits the total pressure onto your dog’s skin. They will effectively demat and detangle while not hurting your dog.
- A solid handle is important. Ergonomics and comfort for you might not be the first thing you think of, but to get the best result when using a slicker brush for your Bernedoodle you need to be able to comfortably use the brush at the correct angles. A comfortable (think large) handle will give you the ability to keep the angles correct and brush in a way that is most comfortable for your dog.
The Best Brush For Bernedoodle Breed
The best brush for Bernedoodle dogs is hands down is the Chris Christensen Long Pin Slicker Brush. The build quality of this brush means less risk of brush burn hurting your dogs skin.
Best Brush for Bernedoodle
Suitable for Puppies
Considered to be the best slicker brush on the market by breeders and dog owners. Suitable for all Poodle Mix breed coat types. Perfect for large or small dogs. Prevents brush burn and looks after the dog skin. Excellent build quality with a built for life attention to detail.
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- Works dense coats all the way to the root
- Prevent brush burn
- Durable and long-lasting
- Suitable for all medium to large breeds
- 40% higher pin density than leading competitors
- Pins softened for comfort
- Leaves coat fluffy and soft
- The best brush on the market is expensive. You should only ever need to purchase one slicker brush if you do go for an insanely high quality brush like this one
The attention to detail and strength of this long-lasting product are the reason it is the number one recommended Bernedoodle brush in owner and grooming Facebook groups.
Thousands of reviews from customers are backed up by excellent reviews from actual groomers. If groomers are using a product professionally, it means the durability and effectiveness is top notch.
You are not going to break the amazing Chris Christensen slicker brush by having it knocked over or dropped accidentally. I knew after a few months of use that this was the last slicker brush I ever wanted to buy. They knock it out of the park with this specific model.
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I love how flexible the densely packed bristles are. It is just comfortable for me and my dog to be brushed with this brush.
I still use a cost-effective steel comb for finishing, but rarely find any issues. This is a daily use brush done correctly.
Budget Friendly Slicker Brush for Bernedoodles
A high quality slicker brush is something that only needs to be bought once. I do recognise though that budgeting is important and my favourite slicker is expensive.
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The Firm Slicker Brush By Andis is the best quality to cost value I found as an interim slicker brush for Bernedoodles. It is also an excellent choice as a travelling or backup slicker brush.
You will need to buy the firm version of this brush rather than the soft. The firm version is suitable for Bernedoodle and Australian Bernedoodle coats. The bristles for the soft are not useful for proper daily brushing and dematting for a Bernedoodle.
The handle is fair quality, and the bristles fairly soft ended. When you encounter a mat, just be careful not to cause any skin damage with cheaper slicker brushes. Give it three or four attempts, then move on for the day. Review it the next day and chip away at it bit-by-bit.
Positives about the Andis Slicker Brush
- Reduces shedding up to 90%
- Removes dead hair from undercoat and topcoat
- Stimulates hair follicles to promote growth and healthier hair
- Anti-slip, soft-grip handle for safe and comfortable grooming
Downsides to the Andis Slicker Brush
- The fine steel bristles are flexible, but stiffer than more expensive options
- The build quality reflect the price, sturdy but will not last forever
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The Firm Slicker Brush By Andis is the best quality to cost value I found as an interim slicker brush for Bernedoodles
Finishing Up: Hands Down Best Bernedoodle Comb
Beyond a slicker brush, the other brush you should get for your dog is a simple steel comb! Use the steel comb as a super fast brush, and a check that your daily slicker brush has been effective.
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There is one best comb for Bernedoodles, and it is high quality AND super budget friendly! My absolute favourite is the Andis 2 Inch Steel Comb. When a budget product has been five stars when reviewed AND is used by professional dog groomers, you know you are onto a winner.
To finish your Bernedoodle coat grooming you should use a steel comb. You will find any remaining mats with a steel comb quickly. It also fluffs the coat and gives some instant fresh style. I like the Andis comb because it lasts forever and has soft endings (despite being steel).
Positives about the Andis Comb
- Removes tangles, mats, loose hair and dirt
- Incredible value
- Stimulates skin and hair follicles
- Perfect for finishing and fluffing
- Lightweight for fatigue-free grooming
Downsides to the Andis Steel Comb
- This is a rare product where I don’t have any downsides. The Andis comb is the bees knees for finishing up Bernedoodle brushing after a slicker brush
It is so easy to strongly recommend this product, as I struggle to think of a situation where you won’t be completely satisfied with the purchase.
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One More Bernedoodle Brushing Item To Consider
Using an optional detangling spray or shampoo can really help with dematting for your Bernedoodle. Personally I prefer detangling spray to shampoos as it is easier to use and means you are not double buying shampoo.
A single spray bottle can last for a year or longer. You don’t need to use a crazy amount.
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Detangling spray is cheap and easy to use, and works really well. It helps the slicker brush separate the hairs more quickly. If you want to make detangling or dematting easier, it is an effective and safe way to make grooming your Bernedoodle simpler.
Sticking with a high quality Bernedoodle shampoo will help prevent matting. Given that we don’t want to overwash our dog, use the best shampoo when you do and consider a detangling spray to help with brushing rather than detangling shampoo.
Conclusions About Brushing Bernedoodles
It is a truth that we need to brush our Bernedoodles pretty much daily. Using the correct tools makes this a breeze. Picking the best brush for Bernedoodle dogs and puppies is the difference between a happy healthy dog, and trouble.
Mats and tangles are a frustrating part of life for owners of Poodle mix breeds. Luckily we can avoid the worst of the problem by
- Using an awesome Bernedoodle appropriate shampoo
- Investing in a high quality slicker brush for daily brushing
- Have a budget-friendly but awesome steel comb on hand for finishing
Prevention is better than the cure, and in this cause the prevention and the cure are the same: effective, easy, at-home daily Bernedoodle brushing.