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How do you keep mats from forming on long coated dogs' ears? I am not sure if this is a result from ear meds in the past or is this just part of what one has to deal with on a regular basis.

To remove them out looks like a formidable task. Do I try and detangle them or cut them out? Either way the dog is going to hurt because that is such a sensitive area.
 

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They only way to keep the matts under control is to brush them daily. I use a comb to help out here with my little girl and she doesnt seem to mind having the area combed. If there are severe matting I would suggest clipping them out before brushing/combing the area.

Tina
 

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I use a real fine tooth comb. My male gets knots when I am treating his ears, I believe it is from the meds draining and him itching. Some mats I cut out and others it the aren't really bad, try to get some water with cream rinse mixed in, wet and basically massage the knot, then use just a couple of teeth on the comb to pick apart the knot.

I am tempted next time I have to treat his ears to cut the hair behind and under his ears.

Val
 

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I use the same undercoat rake I use everywhere else, and it works fine. If there are persistent little tangles, I'll sometimes just cut them out.
 

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ironic, i just sat in the bathroom for 30 minutes last night working on my boys ears. i'm pretty good about grooming him, but probably not the most efficient in getting to all areas. he hates his ears and tail done. anyway - i had to just suck it up and clip the mats behind his ears. one side was pretty bad and pretty close to the skin, so lesson learned - i now have to stay up on special ear attention.

i'll likely pick up a mat breaker (nice to see its only 10 bucks) between tilden and my cats butt - i'll need it.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Originally Posted By: Camerafodder
i'll likely pick up a mat breaker (nice to see its only 10 bucks) between tilden and my cats butt - i'll need it.
I have a long haired cat too. Same problem. I'll have to look into purchasing one of those tools.
 

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Be VERY careful cutting mats out. I've seen many cases of owners leaving holes in their dogs and cats by using scissors to remove mats.

If you can't hold your fingers between the mat and skin, you'll have to use clippers. Luckily, if you hold the untangled hair out of the way when you clip, it will usually fall over the bald spot and you can't really even see it.

Sometimes they can be picked out, but clipping them is the safest way to go. To prevent them, use a fine toothed comb and make sure you get down to the skin the entire time you're combing.
 

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Originally Posted By: BrennasMomBe VERY careful cutting mats out. I've seen many cases of owners leaving holes in their dogs and cats by using scissors to remove mats.

If you can't hold your fingers between the mat and skin, you'll have to use clippers.
Yeah, one of my cats doesn't do a great job of grooming herself, and she's so squirmy that *I* have a hard time grooming her too, so she often has mats, usually on her belly or in her pits. If they're too close to the skin I wait until the hair grows out long enough that I can pinch enough hair between the skin and the mat that I can safely cut it out. It's especially hard with cats because they have such loose, thin skin.

She would totally freak out if I tried to use clippers on her, but they will do it at the vet's if she has any mats when I take her in for something else. Takes several people though!
 

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Originally Posted By: BrennasMomBe VERY careful cutting mats out. I've seen many cases of owners leaving holes in their dogs and cats by using scissors to remove mats.

If you can't hold your fingers between the mat and skin, you'll have to use clippers. Luckily, if you hold the untangled hair out of the way when you clip, it will usually fall over the bald spot and you can't really even see it.

Sometimes they can be picked out, but clipping them is the safest way to go. To prevent them, use a fine toothed comb and make sure you get down to the skin the entire time you're combing.
Excellent advice
Of course, providing a #10 or higher blade is used - a #7 skip blade can do a lot of damage in inexperienced hands!! I have also seen many gruesome injuries.

I have an additional suggestion when scissors will be used, insert a fine (flea) metal comb between the skin and the matt and only cut on the matt side of metal comb - this will ensure the skin is protected. If the matt is large work little by little always protecting the skin.

Tammy's suggested tool is also a fantastic tool (I was so impressed the first time I used a Matbreaker) but very sharp and care needs to be taken.
 
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