Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Slicker Brush Chronicles

As anyone who grooms anything knows, trusty tools are more important than practically anything else on earth---however---even the trustiest, best quality tools give up after miles of use and bite the dust too:(. The slicker of choice for 99.9% of Angora breeders at this point seems to be the Doggy Man series made by Miller's Forge. These nifty brushes come in several different sizes and are available through KW cages and some of the well known equipment companies, but the nice thing about them is that they have super, SUPER soft bristle beds with extra soft bristles that make grooming a breeze and result in next-to no wool being pulled out, which is a clear advantage when grooming for show or grooming any bunny whose owner wants to preserve the density of the coat. The single worst problem with Doggy Man brushes according to those who use them the most is that they have 2 part handles that tend to break almost religiously after several months of use. Two remedies that I have heard of to solve this problem include 1) wrapping the handles with multiple layers of tape (which also helps make a better grip on them), and 2) sticking part of a chopstick into the broken handle and hot gluing the bottom section back on. Dru Shepard and Linda Cassella are two English Angora breeders who contributed these tips recently. Dru told me about the taping several years ago at the RI Convention, and Linda told me about the chopstick at this year's PA Convention:). I remember that I wrapped all my brushes up with tape as soon as I got them and have never had broken handles as a result, but recently one of the smaller brushes did have THIS unexpected thing happen:

When I first noticed it I was completely mortified since I rely on these things so heavily, but Linda suggested that this could probably be fixed with hot glue too so I will attempt the surgery this weekend, and if it doesn't work or the brush does not seem strong enough I will simply go ahead and order another one. They are some of the best investments an angora breeder can make IMO, and well worth the money:).

Btw, if anyone out there has any good ideas for repairing or reinforcing brushes it would be wonderful if you could post them here in the comment section. I am sure there are tips out there that I and others have certainly never heard of and would be thrilled to hear since it is better to repair and reuse things whenever we can. I will bring this up on the FA list also to see if anyone has ideas there as well.

Have a fabulous week and hope all of you out there are enjoying the lunar eclipse tonight!

Til next time:-)

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