Why Your Dog’s Fur Gets Matted

We all have seen dogs with a lot of fur. As cute as our furry friends are, their fur can get in the way. Some dogs with longer fur are at a risk of developing matted hair. This is when fur sticks together and knots, creating pain and tension on your dog’s skin.

The sensation of matting is uncomfortable for your dog but is not life-threatening. However, there are ways to prevent this from happening. It also best to solve the issue once you notice your dog’s fur clumping as it gets difficult the worse the matting is. Find out more by reading our Moline, IL, animal hospital’s article below.

dog matted fur moline il

What is Matted Fur?

It is important to understand what matted fur is and what it looks like. This fur looks different on every dog breed. Although it is possible for short haired dogs to get mats or tangles in their hair, it is not a reoccurring problem that you should worry about.

Most of the time, matted fur develops in dogs with medium to long hair. The fur needs to be long enough to attach themselves together.

How Does a Dog’s Fur Get Matted?

There are many ways your dog’s fur can get matted. It is easy for the knots and matted texture to get out of control if you do not carefully clean and look at your dog’s fur. The most common reasons for knots or matted fur are dirt, weeds, a lack of brushing, bathing, and sticky substances.


Long daily walks and play time allow your dog to breathe and exercise freely. However, the outside is filled with dirt that can easily attach itself to your dog’s fur. If your furry friends like to roll in the mud, this could explain the matting in their fur.

When too much dirt is trapped between fine strands of fur, it can attract other pieces and eventually stick to your dog’s skin, if it gets wrapped around enough.


There are certain types of weeds that stick to your dog’s fur that can cause pain and trouble. Weed plants are sticky and typically have long pointy pieces that attach themselves to soft surfaces like your dog’s fur and skin.

This is not only painful but can create a big knot or mat in your dog’s fur. It is painful and can eventually lead to infections.

Not Brushing

Not all dogs need to have their coats groomed, however, if your dog has medium to long fur, you should groom them a minimum of once a week. If not, any tangles in your dog’s fur can worsen and turn into a large mat. It is easier to take out tangles in the earlier stages, instead of matted hair.

Lack of Bathing

When there is a lack of bathing, your dog can also develop matted fur. This is because water and soap can take out any pieces that are stuck and causing tangles and matted fur. Once you go a long time without bathing your dog, the knots can worsen and pile up with objects that continue to cause matted fur.

Sticky Substances

Dirt is not the only object that can lead to matted fur. Any sticky substances that your dog’s fur comes in contact with can cause their fur to stick together and mat. It is best to try and clean your dog’s fur if you notice that there are any sticky substances on their fur.

Sometimes the substances are natural and come from outside, like tree sap. While other times it is food, like syrup or honey.

How to Get Your Dog’s Mats Out

If you notice that your dog does have matted fur, there are several of options that can help them. If the matting is severe, your vet may recommend shaving your dog’s fur and waiting for it to grow back.

However, if the matting is not severe, you can use a deep conditioner and water to create a mixture. Add this mixture into a spray bottle and saturate your dog’s fur where the matting is. Use a comb with large spaces and start to comb out the tangles and matted fur.

This step is hard because your dog may start trying to move away from the feeling. It is uncomfortable, but necessary. You can always give your puppy a treat to calm down.

How to Prevent Your Dog’s Hair from Matting

Instead of treating your dog’s skin and fur, it is easier to prevent the matting. Some dogs have a mind of their own and will jump into sticky substances and dirt, but you can keep their fur and coat clean and smooth to prevent matting.

It is best to wash your dog once a month, depending on their coat type and how many times you take them outside. Any more than once a month will dry out your dog’s skin. Also, brush your dog’s fur once a day to release any objects or substances stuck in your dog’s fur.

Our Moline, IL, Animal Hospital Offers Grooming Services

All in all, dogs have sensitive coats and fur that require special attention. Matted hair is not a desirable thing to deal with for the pet owner or the dog. The matted hair can cause tension, headaches, and pain. There are solutions for taking out the matted fur though, and you can prevent it with frequent bathing and brushing.

Regular grooming appointments for medium to long-haired dogs are very helpful with decreasing the amount of matted dog fur. Give our Moline, IL, dog groomer a call by reaching out to our animal hospital at (309) 524-5696