If our dog has long hair, or short soft or cotton type hair you will need to take a lot of care so that it looks healthy and does not form knots or matting.
What are knots and matting? In short, a tangled mass of hair, creating lumps or clusters that only grow if not cared for properly. While some types of dogs can go a couple of days even up to a week without brushing such as Labrador, Beagle, Bulldogs, to name a few, other breeds, such as Bichon Frise, Shih Tsu, Maltese, Poodles and new Poodle hybrid breeds are more prone to knots and matting. For these breeds, it is recommended to brush daily.
People looking for a new family addition need to keep this in mind when it comes to home care and budget, including time for care and cost for maintenance.
If we think we are combing properly, but aren’t or have left it in the care of another person who has not been able to do it correctly, we have a problem. Knots and matting in both dog and cat hair are not easy to undo and may cause pain to our pet, sometimes leading to a rather severe haircut.
If the hair of the pet does not have a good brushing on a regular basis for whatever reason, the knots/matting becomes very close to the skin. While spot cutting can take care of minor knots but if it is severe, the best thing for your pet is to cut the hair and wait for it to grow back. Properly maintaining while the hair grows back or history repeats itself.
Many owners do not understand this is what is best for the pet. Vanity is not the option at this point. Consider the process as a learning experience on how to care and maintain the type of coat your pet has.
If we tried to untangle knots and matting, besides a time consuming and costly process, even with the upmost care, we might break the hair and more than likely cause pain to the dog or cat with the pulling of the skin with potential injury.
The last thing we want is for the pet to be fearful of the grooming process. Does it happen? Unfortunately yes. Do groomers get blamed? Unfortunately, yes again. Hopefully, some of the home care tips will help.
Some techniques used to remove knots. Gently touching the knots of the dog’s hair with the fingers, we can determine whether they are not very hard and if we manage to move them, we can still save the hair. The first thing we have to do is, begin to undo the knots with our fingers. In this step, we must forget about the combs, which would only close the knots more.
After softening the tangled hair in this way, we prepare a bath with warm water for the dog or cat. Then, we wash the pet using a large amount of special shampoo for dogs and cats gently working throughout the body. Next, we rinse well with the hot water, and apply conditioner throughout the body that we use for their hair and let it set for about five minutes.
Once we let the conditioner work to help us undo the knots of the dog or cat’s hair, we rinse it well with warm water without leaving any remaining product. Afterwards, we begin to dry the hair with a high velocity dryer. We comb or brush to ease the knots out depending on the coat.
Tending to knots and matting is not easy for everyone to do at home. If pets can be properly brushed, this will minimize stress when you try to do it or when they go for their regular grooming.
How long should that be for grooming? Every four to six weeks. If your pet starts to experience knots or matting within that time, you will need to brush or comb more often. Your other option is to bring your pet to a salon for a bath and brushing service in-between regular grooming appointments.
If you have any questions, please contact us.