Mats in fur -- what to do? - Cat Forum : Cat Discussion Forums
 
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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-09-2006, 10:36 PM Thread Starter
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Mats in fur -- what to do?

Snickers has a couple of mats in his fur that I'm not sure how to deal with. It looks like there's something sticky in his fur -- no idea what it is.

I tried to clean him by rubbing the spots with a damp cloth and then brushing him, which really didn't help. He hates to be held and doesn't like me (or anyone) tinkering with him. It's hard to even examine the mats because he gets annoyed and leaves pretty quickly.

FYI -- he is a short-haired cat with a pretty thick coat.

Any thoughts on how to de-mat a large, grumpy, and squirmy cat?

Owned by Pepper and Pumpkin RIP Snickers 8/22/00 -- 11/28/06

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Lisa 216 is offline  
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-10-2006, 01:24 PM
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Well I don't know but I should! I looked it up and found this... hope it helps! I am going to try it on some of the cats at the kitty retirement home.

From http://cats.about.com/cs/catmanagement1 ... matcat.htm
Quote:
How To De-mat a Cat

Mats are not only unsightly, they are painful to your cat, and they can lead to skin irritation and infection, if not removed. Here's the easiest and least painful way to get rid of them, but be forwarned: it will take patience.

Difficulty: Hard

Time Required: 15 min. Intervals

Here's How:
1. Start with a relaxed cat. Don't suddenly decide to remove a mat in the middle of a play session, or you'll suffer serious damage from claws.

2. Sprinkle a little cornstarch or talcum powder in the area of the mat, and gently work it around with your fingers.

3. Gently pull the mat up away from the skin, so you can see where the skin is.

4. Using sharp blunt-nosed scissors, carefully slide the scissors along the skin into the mat, holding them perpendicular to the skin, i.e., the bottom blade slides along the skin.

5. Cut up, into the mat. Make a clean cut and try not to pull the hair while cutting.

6. Give your kitty a small treat and tell him what a good kitty he is to be so patient.

7. Move the scissors over half an inch or so and repeat steps three through six.

8. You should be able to start working the separated mats apart with your fingers now, and loose pieces will easily pull away.

9. Start with a separated section of the mat. Using your left hand, hold the base of the mat down with thumb and forefinger, so the comb won't pull hair out.

10. Using a fine-toothed 'flea comb,' gently start combing through the mat piece, starting at the very tip of the hairs. Move down into the mat as you work, occasionally using only the first 3 or 4 tines of the comb, for stubborn sections

11. With short-haired cats a small slicker brush may be used next to brush through any remaining tangles. The keywords here are 'slowly' and 'gently.'

12. Give your cat another treat and stop for the day. Depending on how seriously matted he is, it may take several days to tackle them all, and you need his cooperation and patience, so don't push it all at once.

Tips:
1. Never bathe a cat before removing mats. You'll only have worse problems on your hands.
2. For small tangles that haven't yet formed 'felt', try spraying with a hair conditioner before combing. Be sure to use a pump-type spray rather than aerosol, which will scare your cat.
3. This tedious procedure will almost always work better if you have a helper to hold and comfort the cat while you work.
4. Seriously matted cats may have to be shaved by your veterinarian or groomer. If this drastic step is necessary, be sure to maintain a regular program of brushing and coming when the coat grows back, to prevent future problems.

What You Need:
Blunt end scissors
Fine-toothed comb
Spray bottle/conditioner
Cornstarch
Kitty Treats
The Cat Whisperer is offline  
post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-10-2006, 05:02 PM
 
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I have the same problem. I just cut it off like for other nasty mats. I stopped because I don't know if you do that or not but it's good.
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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-10-2006, 05:41 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the advice. I hadn't heard the powder/conrstarch idea. That sounds like a good trick.

CW, I had to laugh at the first piece of advice -- "Start with a relaxed cat." Snickers is like a feline Woody Allen -- very neurotic.

He needs kitty yoga first...or maybe a vacation LOL

I will need a suit of armor to avoid getting scratched! Wish me luck.

Owned by Pepper and Pumpkin RIP Snickers 8/22/00 -- 11/28/06

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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-10-2006, 05:54 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Cat Whisperer
3. Gently pull the mat up away from the skin, so you can see where the skin is.

4. Using sharp blunt-nosed scissors, carefully slide the scissors along the skin into the mat, holding them perpendicular to the skin, i.e., the bottom blade slides along the skin.

5. Cut up, into the mat. Make a clean cut and try not to pull the hair while cutting.
**IMPORTANT--Let me just add that you should slide a comb under the matt--right next to the skin--to protect the skin from getting snipped! I accidently cut one of my cats when he moved and the scissors sliced skin instead of fur!! It cost me a trip the the vet and $137 to get him stitched up!

After that hard lesson, I bought an electric dog grooming razor to shave off any large matts. It wasn't expensive, and I've found that it's the safest way to deal with them
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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-11-2006, 09:09 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cat_lover_forever
**IMPORTANT--Let me just add that you should slide a comb under the matt--right next to the skin--to protect the skin from getting snipped!
Thanks for the reminder!! As a child, I remember my mom used to do that when she snipped the mats off of our angora. That's an excellent idea.

Owned by Pepper and Pumpkin RIP Snickers 8/22/00 -- 11/28/06

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