Dog Grooming: 3 Tips on How to Handle Matting From Knotty Dogs to Smooth Coats โ€” Your Guide to Getting Rid of Matted Fur

Dog Grooming: 3 Tips on How to Handle Matting

Your canine companionโ€™s luscious locks can develop into mat, sometimes. Though unsightly, you can get rid of it without much trouble. Here, weโ€™ve shared a few tips to help you remove matted fur from your dog.

Let’s put it this way—you’re petting your Fido, and suddenly, you notice clumps or balls of hair on its stomach or back. Those balls—known as matted fur—look terrible; they destroy the beauty of your pooch. But do you know hair mats can be dangerous for your Rover’s health? 

East Valley Animal Hospital reveals that hair mats can lead to pain and skin infections. Parasites like ticks and fleas can also hide behind matted fur. Dealing with matted fur is stressful. It’s not just about aesthetics; matted fur can severely impact your dog’s comfort and overall health. However, fear not, for we are here to help you get rid of them. 

In this article, we’ll discuss the causes of matted hair and share some tips to remove matted fur from your Fido. 

What Causes Matted Hair in Dogs?

There are several reasons why your canine companion gets matted hair. Understanding them is important. Otherwise, no matter how many grooming salons you take your pooch to, nothing will keep the mats from forming again. Here are some common causes of matted fur: 

1. Lack of Proper Grooming

Skipping your pooch’s grooming appointment can lead to matted fur. But not taking your Fido to professional groomers isn’t the sole reason behind matted fur. Your furry friend is more likely to develop mats if you don’t brush its hair regularly. 

Every time your canine companion moves, its individual hairs rub together, which results in mats. This, however, doesn’t happen if your pooch is short-coated or its fur is brushed regularly. Brushing your pet’s coat daily helps remove dead hair before it can develop into mats. 

Paula Heubusch, a certified dog trainer from the Association of Professional Dog Trainers, revealed that matting doesn’t only happen in dogs with long hairs. Even non-shedding dogs, like Poodles or Schnauzers, can develop mats as their hair grows. 

2. Environmental Factors

If your Fido spends the majority of its time outdoors, it’s likely to develop mats. Dogs who play outdoors, especially in grassy or wooded areas, collect debris in their coats. As a result, hair tangles, which leads to matting. 

Wet or damp fur is also prone to matting. Your furry friend will develop mats if it swims frequently or loves rubbing its belly on the wet grass. Water causes the hair to tangle. If you don’t brush its coat right away, you will have to deal with mats later. 

3. Friction

Anything that comes in contact with your Fido’s fur and causes friction will cause mats. This friction causes the hair to tangle and knot. 

Areas where collars, harnesses, or clothing consistently rub against the fur are particularly susceptible to matting. These include armpits, neck, and chest. Those who wear poorly fitting collars or harnesses for long periods are at higher risk. 

Sleeping positions can also contribute to friction-related matting. Dogs that frequently lie down in the same position can develop mats in areas that are constantly rubbed against surfaces. Common spots include the sides of the body, hips, and elbows.

How to Remove Fur Mats From Your Dog

Truth be told, a mat—unlike a tangle—cannot be removed using a comb. Even a professional groomer at the grooming salon won’t be able to remove tangles using a comb. Hence, you shouldn’t even try. The process will only cause your Fido pain and irritation. 

However, there are several ways you can get rid of fur mats from your pooch. We’ll discuss a few of them here:

1. De-Mat the Hair  

Removing mats from your dog’s fur is difficult, but the right tools can make the task easy. 

A slicker brush is a must-have, for it helps remove mats along with loose hair. The Li'l Pals Slicker Brush is a great option for getting rid of mats from your Rover’s fur. Using it frequently helps minimize shedding as well as keeps the coat clean and healthy. 

For dense mats, the JW Gripsoft De-Matting Rake is considered the best. Its two-inch teeth can remove knots from the dog’s coat effectively. It works well on long-haired breeds, though you can use it on your short-coated Fido. 

2. Shave Your Dog

If your Fido’s fur is matted down to the skin, a slicker brush or a de-matting rake won’t help. You will have to shave it. Visiting a dog groomer for grooming services is recommended. Consider booking a grooming appointment online. But if you want to tackle the task of removing mats yourself, consider getting a shaver. 

The ConairPRO Grooming Kit for Dogs & Cats is great for light clipping. This 10-piece kit features a powerful motor and a 5-detent taper lever that helps select cutting positions. 

However, don’t dampen its coat. You must remove the mat before pouring water on your pooch’s coat. Getting rid of mats will become difficult if you add water. That is because the mats soak up water and tighten, which makes them harder to remove. Shaving the fur when it’s wet also increases the risk of injury. So, always shave before the grooming process. 

3. Bathe Your Pet Afterwards

When you’re done removing mats using a clipper or a shaver, gather your pet’s grooming products. You’ll have to give your pooch a bath with warm water. Get nail clippers or a nail grinder, along with shampoo and conditioner. Trim your dog’s nails before bathing it. After nail trimming, shampoo and condition the coat. 

The Fresh ‘n Clean 2-in-1 Oatmeal Conditioning Shampoo cleans and conditions the dog’s coat in one easy step. The nourishing protein-infused formula keeps the fur free of tangles and mats, while Aloe and Vitamin E moisturize the pet’s skin, minimizing skin irritation.

Before you bathe your pooch, make sure to keep a few pieces of its favorite treats handy so that it looks forward to grooming. Sandy Bassett reveals that she smears organic peanut butter on the wall, which her dog licks while she lathers him up. She further advises keeping towels handy, stacked in the closet lid, or on the sink. Her canine companion now equates bath with treats, so he’s always eager to bathe. 

Depending on your dog’s breed, you will have to use the appropriate drying method to dry the fur. Use a dog towel to dry your pooch’s hair if it’s short-coated. Otherwise, you will have to kennel dry it.

Thereafter, brush your pet’s coat. The JW Gripsoft Medium Comb is great for detangling your canine companion’s fur and breaking up mats. Its soft-grip rubber handle makes it easy to use.

In conclusion, matting is a common problem that pet owners face, especially those who own long-haired dogs. However, this issue can be tackled if they groom dogs regularly. 

You can get rid of mats and prevent them from forming by brushing your pet’s coat daily and bathing it every few weeks. If your pooch has stubborn mats, seek the help of a professional groomer. They have the experience and expertise to safely remove mats without causing harm to your dog.

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