Some breeds of dogs, like Shih Tzu's, do not shed their hair, which makes them prone to matting if they are not brushed and groomed often. Matting occurs when large clumps of tangled hair form in the coat. Once this occurs, it is almost impossible to remove the mats through brushing alone. Most dogs have to have their hair clipped very short in order to get rid of the mats. In severe cases, the clipping can only be performed by a veterinarian because of the nasty conditions that may be present under the hair. Following are four disgusting and painful consequences of matted hair in dogs.
Matted hair traps moisture close to the skin, creating the perfect living environment for certain critters, such as fleas and bacteria. Other types of bugs and larvae can take up residence as well, such as maggots and ticks. Since you can't see the critters through the mats, the infestation might be well advanced before you even know they're there. In some cases, an infestation isn't uncovered until the hair is clipped back, revealing the damage underneath.
The constant moisture, friction and pressure created by hair mats can cause several types of injuries. In addition to sores, dogs can develop hematomas or collections of blood under the skin. If the mats become tight or constricting, they can also compromise the blood supply to the ears and limbs. Some dogs have even had to have limbs amputated because of this issue.
If left untreated, sores and injuries can become severely infected, which can result in tissue death. If an infection turn septic, the dog may die.
As you can imagine, all of these infestations, injuries and infections can get quite painful. The weight of matted hair can also cause a great deal of pain. If mats start to restrict movement or the ability to eat, the condition can become debilitating very quickly.
It is almost impossible to see under severe mats, which makes grooming dangerous. It is possible to cut the skin while clipping away the hair. What's more, sore, infected and damaged skin is much more delicate than healthy skin, which makes it more prone to injury.
To avoid mats, be sure to have your dog groomed regularly. Additionally, brush your dog's hair several times each week. If you're diligent about keeping your dog's coat in optimal condition, you won't have any issues with matting and can avoid the dangerous consequences of hair mats in long-hair breeds.
To learn more about pet grooming, contact a company like Abraxas Pet Resort.Share
25 November 2015
After my 13 year old lab had surgery, I couldn't leave her home alone while I went to work. She had to be supervised to ensure that she didn't hurt herself and rip out her stitches. That was the first time that I even considered taking her to a pet day care center. I have grown to love the center that I take her to when I have to work long hours or have commitments that can take all day. If you have a dog that you don't or can't leave home alone, this blog can help you find a pet day care center for your pet and some tips for making the transition into day care easier for you and your pet.