Why Won’t My Clippers Cut My Dog’s Hair?

Trimming your furry friend’s fluff is integral to his overall grooming. However, at-home grooming can be challenging, and you may find yourself questioning: why my clippers won’t cut my dog’s hair?

Well, there can be several possibilities why your clippers might not be working properly. Regardless of the reason, the situation can be entirely frustrating, especially if you are trying to save some bucks from professional grooming services.

Here we have outlined some of the most common reasons your dog clippers won’t cut and what you can do about it. Just keep in mind that the tips we have mentioned here may or may not apply depending on the model of clipper you have.

Reasons why your dog clippers might not be working

1. Your blade is dull

The first and most obvious reason a dog clipper won’t cut hair is a blunt or dull blade. Dog clipper blades usually lose their edge after some use. Even if you oil your clipper blade or sharpen it regularly, it will still lose its ability to give your pooch a great haircut.

If this is the case with your blade, you can re-sharpen it or grab a new one from the market. Almost every dog clipper brand sells blade replacements, which are obviously a cheaper alternative to new ones.

Here is what you can do about it:

  • If you use your dog clipper regularly, try sharpening it at least once every six months.
  • If you are a dog groomer who uses a clipper for many hours a day, try sharpening your clipper blades every one-to-one and half months.

2. Your pooch’s coat is too matted for an at-home trim

If you have a brand new clipper or super-sharp clipper blades, the problem might be your canine’s fur. Your beloved furball might be suffering from an extreme case of matting that simply won’t go away with home grooming techniques.

Most dog clippers for nonprofessional uses are made with blades that are too short to clean mats. They typically aren’t designed to go under knots and mats. You will need a specialized dog clipper made for this coat problem.

Here is what you should do if your pup’s coat is gone with mats:

  • Use a blade that works well on a matted coat. Usually, #10 works well.
  • You will need a slicker brush and a handheld dryer.
  • Start with an area that is easy to complete—for example, a foot.
  • Brush and dry the coat until the hair seems separated from the dog’s skin.
  • If your clippers still don’t work, it’s better to use scissors and shorten the fluff a bit.
  • If your pup’s coat is really matted and you are not confident in your grooming skills, don’t hesitate to seek help from experienced dog groomers.

3. Clipper blades aren’t adequately oiled

When it comes to clipper blades, oiling too much and too little both are bad things.

Excessive oil gets into the blade’s teeth, making the clipper stuck to the fur and preventing it from cutting smoothly.

On the other side, using very little oil causes overheating. It also dulls the clipper, leading to excessive pulling and snagging of the pup’s fur.

Here is how to deal with this:

  • Apply two drops of oil to lubricate your blade. If the blade is too drippy, you are using way more than what’s actually needed. Wipe the excess oil using clean tissue paper.

4. Your clipper isn’t suited to your dog’s coat

Many newbie pet owners may not know, but almost all dog clippers are rated for a specific coat thickness.

So if your clipper isn’t doing its job, it might be below the level of thickness you needed for your fido.

Clippers are usually categorized into four levels. These are

  • Light use
  • Medium use
  • Heavy duty
  • And super duty.

The thicker your pups coat is, the heavier your clipper duty needs to be. Light use clippers are well suited for short-haired canines. But if you own an Alaskan malamute or any heavy-coated breed, we suggest you invest in super-duty models to make your pup cuddle ready.

A solution to this problem:

  • Overall the solution is to upgrade to new dog clippers for thick hair and with a better duty level. Indeed it’s an added expense, but it is way better than pulling your pup’s hair and feeling frustrated.

5. The dog clipper has a battery issue

Before assuming that you have a faulty clipper that needs replacement, double-check if the battery has enough power. There is a possibility that your clipper only needs to be charged enough to chop your dog’s hair smoothly.

Here’s what to do:

  • If your battery doesn’t hold its charge, consider replacing it with the new one.
  • You can also upgrade to a wired-type clipper.

6. Blades are clogged

If your clippers don’t cut hair at all, one of the possibilities could be that the clipper blades are clogged with hair, preventing the edge from cutting smoothly.

While trimming your dog’s hair, it is essential to pause after some glides. It will help you shake off the hair collected on the blade.

Beer in mind, clogged blades often pull and chew your pup’s hair. This condition can make your blade dull faster.


  • Clean your clippers after every use. It will prevent stuck hair from causing trouble during the next grooming session.

Wrapping up:

As pet owners, we know how horrible it feels when you are ready to groom your pooch and the clippers don’t cut.

Well, we have discussed six possibilities why this could happen, along with the solutions to address the issue. Follow these tips, and hope you will find them helpful.