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My Dog’s Hair is Matted: Help !

If you own any breed of dog with long hair, you know the pain of matted hair. Even those who groom their dog and brush their hair on a regular basis can sometimes still suffer from matted hair. The truth is that some dogs are just more prone to matting than others. Sadly, that long, silky coat you loved so much when you got your canine fur baby can quickly become an arch nemesis when you struggle with constant tangling and matting.

However, the grass isn’t always greener on the other side. Dogs with “fur” instead of “hair” tend to shed a whole lot more, so it really becomes a case of “pick your poison.” Dogs with hair will often become matted and tangled even with your best efforts at grooming them and controlling it, so don’t get too discouraged.

1. If your dog’s hair isn’t matted too badly, try using your fingers to work it apart first. You can use a brush or comb to untangle the rest of it once you’ve gotten the biggest part undone.

2. Ideally, you should start training your dog as a pup to enjoy being groomed. Not only will that help you get them to stay still during the process, if you do it regularly, it can become a pleasant, soothing, bonding ritual between you and your dog.

3. Use the right tools. Talk to your groomer to discover the tools that are best for your dog and breed, and what kind of routine will be most effective in preventing matted hair. Your groomer may recommend several tools. A slicker brush is common and works well in untangling matted hair.

4. Some groomers use a comb, especially on the really stubborn tangles. Just be careful, it’s easy to accidentally hurt yourself or your dog with the pointy teeth. Another essential is an undercoat rake, especially if your dog has both short and long hair.

6. A mat splitter will come in handy too for those really nasty mats. It’s basically a little one-sided blade used to saw mats apart. Just make sure you don’t accidentally saw your dog’s skin.

7. keep clippers on hand just in case you need to cut your dog’s hair to get rid of the mat. Clippers are also great for keeping your dog’s paws trimmed. Your dog can get mats in the hair in between their paw pads, so keeping it clipped short there can help.

8. Avoid using scissors to remove mats, especially scissors that are sharp and pointy. You could accidentally snip or pierce your dog’s skin and open them up to the possibility of infection. And if your dog happens to go crazy on you while you’re trying to cut a mat loose, you could accidentally cut them pretty badly, creating a wound that may need stitching.