Poodle Coat – Matted and Tangles?


Poodle Coat – Matted and Tangles?

Poodles are amazingly smart, loyal and active companions, and their non-shedding coat is perfect for owners with allergies. But the mats and tangles that come with it are a whole different story!

Managing your Poodle’s fur might seem impossible once you get behind on his grooming schedule. But don’t worry – we can get you and your pooch back on track!

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Do Poodles Get Matted?

Yes, they do – Poodles are of the the dog breeds that have the highest tendency to form mats. While Poodles and Poodle mixes (Doodles) are often sold as non-shedding, easy-to-care-for dogs, their coat does require maintenance and care.

Poodle’s coat is dense and curly and if they are not brushed and washed regularly, they can mat badly.

Is Matted Hair Painful For Dogs?

Unfortunately yes, matted hair is very uncomfortable for your dog and can even lead to a variety of problems down the line.

Even small mats can irritate the skin. They cause itching and painful sensations for your dog. When those mats are removed, the skin is red and inflamed underneath.

Especially if your dog scratches or bites those spots, they can progress to lesions that get infected. They are often very slow to heal.

Seeds such as foxtails can burrow into the dog’s skin, cause extensive infection and require surgery to be removed. 

Fleas and ticks can live in the mats, unnoticed by the owner, and cause around-the-clock itching and discomfort for your dog.

What Coat Type Does A Poodle Have?

Poodles have an unusual coat.

Most dogs have a double-coat, meaning that they have two layers of hair: a dense undercoat consisting of wooly hairs, and a top coat of longer hairs that are called the guard hairs. Examples for such dogs are Shepherds and Huskies.

Poodles and their mixes (such as the Goldendoodle or Bernedoodle) have a single-layer coat. It consists of dense and curly fur. It does not shed and is considered hypoallergenic.

poodles in show coat

How Do You Groom A Matted Poodle?

If your Poodle is already matted, you have several options to take care of it:

Professional Groomer – Expert Interview

A professional groomer can fix your dog’s hair the fastest. They have the experience and tools to get your Poodle’s coat in shape again. With a combination of clipping and brushing, they will be able to do the best job possible.

We interviewed a professional groomer on our podcast about exactly this topic – check it out here:

Clipping Your Poodle’s Coat

If you want to take care of your Poodle’s mats at home, the easiest and fastest solution is to shave your dog. Once the mats are removed, you can start over and keep up with the brushing as the hair slowly grows out again.

Clipping the coat is the most comfortable option for your dog, and especially if he does not like to stand still, you should pick to just shave him. The hair will always grow back! 

Brushing Out The Tangles

You can brush out your Poodle’s tangles with a lot of patience and conditioner. You need to be aware that this can be uncomfortable for your dog though. 

If your dog’s mats are too tight and close to the skin, it can be impossible to groom the dog appropriately without causing him pain.

You should not attempt to brush out bad mats. It is not fair to the dog! Choose to shave them off and then take good care of the coat as it is growing back.

poodle tangled hair

How Do I Stop My Poodle’s Hair From Matting?

It is extremely important to brush your Poodle regularly. Depending on the haircut you choose for him, this might be as often as once a day.

You should bathe your Poodle regularly with the right shampoo and conditioner and blow-dry him afterwards.

If you are out and about and your Poodle gets muddy and dirty, you need to take care of his coat as soon as you get home. Letting mud dry out on your Poodle’s hair will create a mat nearly instantly and make it impossible to brush out later.

There are different detanglers on the market that can help to make the hair slicker and less likely to mat.

The best and easiest way to keep your Poodle’s hair from matting however is to give him a haircut that you can keep up with. If you are a busy owner or take your dog outside a lot, your Poodle loves the water or playing with his doggy friends in the fields – choose a sport cut. The shorter your Poodle’s hair, the easier it will be to prevent mats and tangles. 

A haircut like the one this little guy is sporting will make your life a lot easier:

poodle running with short hair

Proper nutrition goes a long way to a healthy coat, too. Make sure you feed your Poodle a high-quality dog food that meets his nutritional needs.

Should You Shave Poodles?

Absolutely, you should always shave your Poodle as much as you need.

Depending on your lifestyle and how much time you have to invest into grooming your dog, a short cut can be an excellent option. It will keep your Poodle free of mats and tangles while also saving you time!

You can and should start trimming your Poodle puppy’s hair early on in their life so they get used to it!

Do Different Poodle Colors Mat The Same?

There is no difference in coat maintenance between the various Poodle colors. Whether your Poodle is black, white, apricot or a Parti Poodle, he will need to be brushed, clipped and washed. You cannot pick a “low maintenance coat color” – they all require the same amount of care and grooming.

poodles different colors

The Bottom Line

Poodles and their mixes are no low-maintenance dogs. While they don’t shed and are hypoallergenic, they will require combing and grooming. You need to prevent your Poodle’s coat from matting – mats are painful for your dog and can lead to serious health conditions.

If your Poodle is already matted, take him to a groomer, clip his coat at home or try to very gently brush out the tangles. However, not all mats can be brushed out, and it is unfair to the dog to subject him to the pain of trying to brush a badly matted coat.

Shaving your Poodle and keeping him in a short cut is an excellent way to keep his coat tangle-free while also cutting down on grooming time.