In September, Dyson introduced a new vacuum attachment designed for grooming pets. The attachment suite, called the Pet Grooming Kit, takes a traditional slicker brush design and reimagines it as a vacuum attachment that allows humans to brush loose hair off of their pet and directly into their vacuum.
We tested Dyson’s new pet grooming attachments on four animals — two cats and two dogs — and surveyed their humans to bring you this review.
What you need to know
Dyson’s Pet Grooming Kit is designed to remove your pet’s loose hairs, dander and dead skin flakes and, according to Dyson, can be used on any pet that is accustomed to being groomed with a slicker brush. (Our pets would like a word with Dyson about that assertion.) The pet tool is compatible with Dyson’s cordless range.
The grooming brush has 364 slicker bristles that are angled at a 35-degree flex to an upright position as you brush; the tool can be used without the vacuum on, then attached to the vacuum, post-grooming, to suck up the hair. Dyson says its Pet Grooming Kit is acoustically engineered to make grooming more peaceful for your pet; here, again, our pets posed some challenges to that claim.
To use the tool, start by brushing your pet with the attachment only to ease them into their salon experience. Then, attach the brush to the flexible hose, which connects to the Dyson’s cordless base. Use your thumb to press on the back of the brush, which extends the slicker bristles; after grooming, release your thumb to retract the bristles and allow the vacuum to suck your pet’s hair into the bin. Dyson’s tutorial video shows two people performing this operation: one to hold the animal and one to operate the vacuum.
The Dyson Pet Grooming Kit retails for $69.99; in accordance with Dyson’s return policy, a Dyson.com purchase can be returned for a full refund within 30 days from the delivery date.
What we liked about it
Our human testers were uniformly impressed by the Dyson pet tool.
“Given how messy pet grooming can be,” one human said, “it’s a genius design that allows you to do a few things at once — catch the dander and skin flakes and excess hair, while also grabbing onto those strands with the bristles as well.”
Testers found setup easy and intuitive. The human reviewers also quickly identified a smart workaround to mitigate the effects of the vacuum’s noise on the more skittish animal reviewers. “I detached the brush from the vacuum,” one human said, and used it to brush her cat, “then reattached and used the Dyson to suck up the loose hair. It’s not the most convenient but at least you get some of the benefits of the tool.”
Overall, our testers complimented the design and efficacy of the Dyson Pet Grooming Kit. “The brush was smartly designed, and definitely grabbed more hair than any other brush I’ve used,” one human reviewer said.
What we (and our pets) didn’t like about it
In contrast to their people, the feline and canine reviewers we tapped for testing were less enamored of the Dyson pet grooming attachment. Let’s meet them.
- Phoebe is a domestic shorthair gray tabby cat with a sweet and affectionate temperament, who sheds a moderate amount depending on the season. She loves being brushed regularly.
- Eartha is an extremely active little black cat who leaves furballs around the house and coatings of hair on white furniture and linens. Eartha is not a fan of grooming; she hates getting her claws clipped, and is generally very skeptical of the vacuum cleaner.
- Millie is a 10-pound shitzu who is very sweet but not terribly bright. Millie is a senior rescue who suffers from noise anxiety — household appliances, in particular, really set the old gal off.
- Big Tony is a 20-pound Yorkie and cancer survivor who loves chomping on carrots and romancing his father’s throw pillows. Tony is a no-shed dog, however he is experiencing significant fur loss after radiation treatments earlier this year. (He remains devastatingly handsome.)
Our feline testers, Phoebe and Eartha, emphatically do not recommend the Dyson Pet Grooming Kit.
To ease Phoebe into things, her human started by using the brush on her without attaching it to the vacuum, which she liked. But when the vacuum was introduced, things went left. “I brought in the vacuum, and tried to simultaneously vacuum and brush, which she hated. She already doesn’t love the sound of the vacuum so I think having it so close to her was a no-go.”
Eartha’s response was even more dramatic. “On first use she was absolutely terrified,” her human says. “I tried to ease her into it by brushing her with just the brush itself before turning the vacuum on, which she quite enjoyed. However, I have to say once the vacuum turned on, it was game over.”
One canine tester had similar feedback: “It scared Millie to death because the Dyson is so loud,” her person says. “I was chasing her around the house with it.”
Big Tony was the lone animal among our testers who tolerated the grooming tool. A critical detail here is that Tony, who knows he’s terribly attractive, typically enjoys being groomed; he behaves beautifully when he’s being washed and set, and always sits quietly and happily for a brushing.
There were, also, some design flaws that our human testers noted. Using the brush requires you to engage your thumb throughout to keep the bristles extended, and testers did not like this design. At the same time, the other hand operates the power trigger button, tying up both hands to operate the machine and the attachment itself, and leaving no hand free to control the animal. The flexible hose was neither long enough nor flexible enough.
You know your pet best and, after reading this review, you probably have a good idea if Sir BarksALot or Lady Meowmalade will welcome or reject the Dyson Pet Grooming Kit.
While your own assessment of your pet’s willingness to tolerate this grooming tool will be the best measure, Dyson created a checklist to help pet parents determine if their tool is right for Fluffy or Fido.
- My pet has medium or long hair.
- My pet does not have a wool coat (for example, dog breeds with wool coats include poodle, bichon frise and puli).
- My pet is considered an adult.
- I already use a slicker brush to groom my pet.
- I already own a Dyson vacuum and my pet isn’t disturbed by it.
- I have someone who can help me groom my pet, if needed.
- If I’m still not 100% sure the pet groom tool is right for me and my pet, I’ll talk to my veterinarian or dog groomer before purchasing.
Overall, this tool does not seem great for cats, or for dogs who have noise anxiety. But for pets who are willing and able to suffer for beauty, we feel confident in recommending the Dyson Pet Grooming Kit as a true game-changer for pet parents.