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Grooming a matted dog

Updated on April 30, 2011
This dog gets a shave down once a year,a #1o blade under the matts
This dog gets a shave down once a year,a #1o blade under the matts
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You can Save The Tangled Coat

Even when one knows how to correctly brush a dogs coat that requires grooming there will be phases the coat will go thru that will cause the coat to become matted..

Dogs that tend to be outside a lot and become soaked tend to mat easily if the hair is not dried and brushed correctly after the soaking..Hard as it may be to understand for someone not in the grooming business,you should not wet a matted dog as this compounds the issue at hand,unless you are prepared for the de-tangling process.Water tends to tighten knots so you can see what a mess you'll have if you fail to comb out mats prior to bathing.

Most owners have difficulty with matting when the dog blows its coat.(when puppy hair is changing to adult).As the coat at the skin is quite thick and the ends are in prime condition to tangle.It seems as if over night the hair will have clumps formed near the skin.You need to make a decision to clip off the entire coat or try to remove the mats.With enough practice and patience the worst mat can be removed but not without some hair loss.You have to consider a few things in order to make that decision.Will the dog tolerate the necessary brushing and tugging to remove the tangles?I think most dogs will if you allow them a break after some length of time,as you will want one yourself.

The best method I have found is to use a detangling product such as osters pawformance spray -on Detangler or the like.I have in a pinch used Johnsons no more tangles as it to contains a oil that breaks the static electricity conducive to matting..At any rate a conditioner of this sort must be used to saturate all the mats,along with a slicker brush or some type of dematting tool to pull the tangles apart.Making sure all the clumps are thoroughly soaked massaging the product to the skin. I normally let this sit 5- 10 minutes.Once the coat is just damp or almost dry begin to separate the tangle from the tips first then down the hair shaft to the skin.Using a slicker brush and matting comb and starting at the bottom of the legs,work in very small sections at a time ,taking the coat in layers.Brush the coat up and then down to loosen the mats,alternating with a matting tool.If your dog is badly matted don't even think about doing the removal in one sitting. Please do yourself and your dog a kindness by taking a break whenever the dog has become restless or your patience is wearing thin,as this is quite a task to undertake and cannot be rushed .

In severe cases it may be necessary to clip the hair off in which case you must be proficient in the use of clippers to manage this. A # 10 blade works well going under the mat being careful not to injure the dog.

Once the mats are off one should make a concerted effort to maintain a tangle free coat.

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    • jorja kick profile imageAUTHOR

      jorja kick 

      7 years ago from southeast georgia

      Hi Barbara thanks for that comment,I actually groom dogs for a living..lol and I love the look of a Brittany in the sporting trim..

    • Barbara Kay profile image

      Barbara Badder 

      7 years ago from USA

      We used Johnson's No More Tangles on our Springer Spaniel when we were in a pinch. Their hair is long and we were fighting mats all the time.

      We now have a Brittany and their hair is longish, but doesn't tangle so often.

    • jorja kick profile imageAUTHOR

      jorja kick 

      7 years ago from southeast georgia

      Thanks!! Jaye for the comment I love schnauzers personality plus..

    • JayeWisdom profile image

      Jaye Denman 

      7 years ago from Deep South, USA

      My female mini Schnauzer hates a slicker brush. For normal every-day brushing, I use a soft "people" brush for her. One winter she got matted from wearing sweaters and PJs every day, so had to be clipped all over. I'll be careful not to let that happen again! Now she has a modified Schnauzer cut that isn't too long anywhere. Jaye

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