The pitch: "Bathe your pet in cleansing ions!"
April 2009. The Pet Groom Pro is a battery-powered pet brush that emits ions to clean and deodorize your pet while you brush. According to the manufacturer, negatively charged ions from the brush will bind with and remove positively charged ions in pet hair, dirt and dander -- although reviewers are never quite sure exactly how this is supposed to work, and one veterinarian quoted is skeptical. Testers say that when they turn the Pet Groom Pro brush on, it buzzes quietly, and one reviewer saw a spark-like blue light deep within the brush, but reviews say there is no way to prove that anything is really happening.
Some testers say the Pet Groom Pro ionic cleaning brush works, noting that their pets actually do smell better after being brushed. A few reviewers detect an elusive clean scent coming from the brush, somewhat like bleach or dryer sheets, although there isn't supposed to be any deodorant involved. Some reviewers note that the Pet Groom Pro directions say to brush the pet for five minutes, and they hypothesize that brushing with any brush for five minutes would make for a cleaner, fresher pet.
In tests, most pets like being brushed with the Pet Groom Pro ionic cleaning brush (especially if they like being brushed anyway), but some hate it. One review notes that the buzzing may irritate some pets, and if the pet wears an electric-fence shock collar the brush may set it off. Testers like the Pet Groom Pro's easy-clean feature -- just pop off the faceplate and the accumulated hair comes with it. As for removing loose hair from the pet, reviews are mixed: Some say the Pet Groom Pro pet brush does a good job, while others say their regular brush does better.
We found several TV news stations that tested the Pet Groom Pro ionic cleaning brush. KDKA in Pittsburgh gets a local pet owner to test the brush on both dogs and cats for two weeks, and the website includes the original video segment. Seattle's KOMO doesn't post any video, but its review quotes two pet owners with different opinions about the Pet Groom Pro brush, and it is well written. Other TV reviews are briefer, but still helpful.
1. KDKA (Pittsburgh)
Consumer editor Yvonne Zanos and a local pet owner test the Pet Groom Pro ionic cleaning brush and a competing pet brush on four dogs and two cats over the course of two weeks. The brushes do seem to help with odor, although the testers conclude they won't replace baths.
Review: Do Ionic Pet Brushes Really Work?, Yvonne Zanos, Feb. 21, 2006
2. KOMO-TV (Seattle)
A local pet owner tries the Pet Groom Pro ionic cleaning brush on her two dogs. She says it doesn't remove as much hair as her regular brush, and she thinks the dogs seem cleaner simply because she brushed them for a long time -- not because of the ions. However, another local dog owner comments that she uses the Pet Groom Pro brush to make her pets smell better, and she uses a different brush to get the loose hair.
Review: Does It Work? Pet Groom Pro, Connie Thompson, Feb. 2, 2006
3. KLTV (Tyler, Texas)
Reporter Joe Terrell tests the Pet Groom Pro brush on Hannah, a shelter dog. As in the KDKA test, the brush doesn't bother the dog, and it does make her smell fresher.
Review: Pet Groom Pro: Does It Work?, Joe Terrell, March 14, 2005
4. WVEC (Norfolk, Va.)
A local dog owner tests the Pet Groom Pro ionic cleaning brush on her dog. The brush removes plenty of hair, and the owner likes the brush's easy-clean feature, but she says a regular brush would work just as well.
Review: Does It Work: Pet Groom Pro Ionic Cleaning Brush, Sandra Parker, Aug. 9, 2005
5. WTVC (Chattanooga, Tenn.)
The reviewer tests the Pet Groom Pro pet brush on his own dog, Larry, but he doesn't find it any better than a regular brush. He quotes a skeptical veterinarian who says a wet washcloth will remove dander just as well as the Pet Groom Pro.
Review: Does It Work: Pet Groom Pro, Calvin Sneed, Sept. 1, 2005