You might have been away on holidays for a long time and Suzie down the road who was house sitting didn’t brush your dog, you might have been swamped at work and totally forgot about brushing your dog or you might have been trying really hard to brush them but for some reason, your dog still managed to become matted. Whatever the reason, once your dog is matted there are only two options. (Depending on the severity)
Brush it all out or Shave it off.
Let’s look at this situation from all angles.
From your point of view.
You want to keep your dog looking fluffy, you don’t want your dog to be cold or you don’t like the look of them with short hair. And/or hopefully, you don’t want your dog to be in pain and aren’t sure how to help them.
From the dog’s point of view.
They’re now unable to regulate their own body temperature, they may be in pain from the matts pulling on their skin, they may have foreign objects stuck in their coat causing discomfort, they may be developing a skin condition from lack of air circulation and they may be really itchy.
From a groomers point of view.
This poor dog is in pain and needs to be relieved.
It may sound really extreme, but, I assure you it is not far fetched at all. Matted hair is really bad for your dog and can cause some serious issues.Lydia – Organix Dog Spa
So, why do most groomers recommend shaving all the hair off when it can just be brushed out?
We recommend shaving all the matted hair off in the best interests of your dog. Brushing out a few knots here and there, sure that’s part of the job and most dogs are tolerant of it. It’s not easy to get every single knot out at home so it’s expected that your dog may have a few. If you have a sensitive dog though, even this can be a bit uncomfortable for them. 😣
By shaving all their hair off, we’re removing any uncomfortable, painful matts and giving you a fresh canvas to work with. As the hair grows back you can start brushing them again. This is often the best option for the dog as their not having to go through the lengthy process of de-matting, good for the groomer because their not having to cause discomfort to your dog and easy for you to begin maintaining their coat again.
So that’s it then? My dog will have to be shaved short?
Not necessarily. It depends on how severe your dogs matts are. If they’re only matted in a few areas, such as the groin, armpits or behind the ears, your groomer might be able to shave just those sections off leaving the rest of the body a longer length. Sure it might look a little odd for a few weeks, but, It’s more about the comfort of your dog and having those matted areas removed will make them feel more comfortable. 😉
If their knotty rather than matted, there’s an excellent chance with a little more work from the groomer and some patience from your dog, the knots will come out and they’ll be able to have a longer hair cut. This method can become quite costly for you and some dogs can be very sensitive to knot pulling. Not all dogs can handle it and other dogs don’t even know it’s happening. 😝
When a groomer suggests shaving your dog, it’s often because there’s just too much to brush out. I hope I can speak for all groomers when I say, we are not in this business to cause pain or discomfort to your dog. We’ve seen how painful matting can be and it hurts us to see your dog living with it. Most groomers are more than happy to help you look after your dogs coat and will show you how to brush and comb them to prevent matting.
Do your dog a favour and either commit to learning how to brush them, commit to regular grooming appointments and/or keep them shaved short. Speak with your groomer to discuss how they can help you, help your dog. 💚