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We went on a cruise a couple of weeks ago and had to use a Bording place (http://www.utahruffhouse.com/) for a couple of days before our friend could watch Sebastian the rest of the time. When we got back home we noticed that the hair under both of his ears was extremely knotted/matted. Both of his ears now sit on "balls" of fur. I can only assume the pack of dogs (they socialize all day - great place!) would go up next to his head and lick/bite/etc all day...

So, i was thinking that i will have to cut them out, but they are very tight/close to his skin and i'm concerned about cutting his skin...

Any suggestions? Is there another way to remove the fur clots?

jared
 

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Humankind. Be both.
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You can get a mat breaker comb, which is a small, curved razor. You comb the razor through the mat and it sort of systematically cuts through it and leaves a much more natural looking result rather than cutting it out in one giant chunk.
 

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Humankind. Be both.
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OR, you could lube up the area with some Cowboy Magic Detangler & Shine and then try combing through the mat with a regular comb a little at a time.
 

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Kate
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If baby oil doesn't loosen the mats, I usually use clippers to shave them off. Thankfully, they get those mats behind and under their ears where it doesn't show too much if they have a temporary bald spot. :)
 

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Thanks for the suggestions...money is pretty tight, so i was hoping to not have to buy anthing special - but my daughter might have some detangler spray...i'll try that...they are pretty gnarly, so i was thinking it might come down to clippers - but i was really worried about getting the skin since it was so tight against the loose ear skin...
 

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Now Caue's Dad Too!
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Most of the time I able to slowly work them out with my fingers. Hold a small amount of fur by the root and pull gently. I takes time and you probably can't do it all in on sitting. Remember to stop BEFORE your dog becomes upset.
 

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Kate
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Thanks for the suggestions...money is pretty tight, so i was hoping to not have to buy anthing special - but my daughter might have some detangler spray...i'll try that...they are pretty gnarly, so i was thinking it might come down to clippers - but i was really worried about getting the skin since it was so tight against the loose ear skin...
The clippers (I use my horse clippers, but you could get a WAHL from the petstore for about $20-30. If you trim your dog's toe fur, you will most likely use it again) are safer than scissors, and less painful for the dog. ;)
 

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If it's really tight, I would recommend getting your groomer/vets office to do it...you could get them to do JUST that at a minimal cost. It's MUCH safer than clipping it yourself if you aren't experienced and safer than using scissors... I've seen even experienced groomers hurt dogs when clipping tight mats out.... so be careful!
 

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I will cut right in the middle and use baby oil (or something) to see if I can break it up - otherwise I cut them out.

They really do feel them.
 

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If it's really tight, I would recommend getting your groomer/vets office to do it...you could get them to do JUST that at a minimal cost. I
Bridger had a bad, tight, close to skin mat behind ear -- I stopped at a groomer I'd never been to/out of town, they "shaved" it off no charge. (they knew I wasn't from around there, so not really expecting my business again). took about 2 seconds
 

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Cutting a matt should be the last resort. When the hair matts, tension on the hair causes the skin to raise in particular areas. It is very easy to accidentally snip the skin instead of the hair. If you can, take a plastic comb and wedge it under the matted hair, then cut above the comb into the matt. The comb then acts as a safeguard between your scissors and your dogs tender skin. You also can use an "acme" letter opener from staples as the cutting edge is on the inside and there is a plastic area between the blade and the dogs skin. divide the matt into sections cutting with the grain of the coat, this will remove hair so use it sparingly. Be extremely careful on non flat surfaces such as the tail or ears.
 

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Griff's a Muffin Thief!
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Whatever you do - get after it promptly as it feels like somebody's pulling your hair to them. I've only had it happen a couple of times with Griff in that spot but it was only about the size of my pinkie nail. I used the cowboy magic on it and combed gently. It took a couple of times to get it loose and I could tell Griff was very relieved once it was out.
 

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Tinkerbell gets them occasionally and I take care of it over a couple of days. I use a pair of small scissors to cut the top of the mat that is away from the skin off. Then I try to finger comb out what I can. Over the next couple of days I trim some more and comb some more. Often times I don't need to cut close to the skin. And if I do it is a small enough mat that I can see exactly what I am doing.

And if I'm using scissors to cut I always have someone there with me holding her head still. Its usually my daughter and she's kissing on her so Tinkerbell doesn't even realize what I'm doing.
 
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