How to Shave a Dog with Matted Fur

30 - 60
12 Month


There are several reasons why a dog's hair can become matted such as a lack of grooming, playing in water, and occasionally as just part of life. Some breeds are more likely than others to become matted. Common areas that tend to get the most mats are under your dog's ears and at the joints of their legs. If you let the mats get too bad, they can reach all the way down to skin level. If the mats have become too severe to brush them out, you may have to take the next step and shave your pup. 

Dog's Perspective

Your dog probably doesn't even realize their coat is full of mats, unless they have become so big that they form balls of hair. These can make sleeping very uncomfortable for your dog and can in time start to pull on his skin, causing pain and irritation. At this point, you need to do your dog a favor and shave them down to skin level. Then you can start over with better grooming habits. 

Caution & Considerations

  • Use a number 10 blade as this will cut your dog's hair right at skin level.
  • Check the temperature of the clipper blades frequently they can get hot enough to burn your dog.
  • Use plenty of lubricant on the clipper blades to help keep them cool.
  • Take your time and go slowly, this will help reduce the risk of injuring your dog.
  • Never get any closer to your dog's eyes with the clippers than one inch.


Having seen how much work it is to shave your dog because of matted hair, it is easy to see why regular grooming is so important. Be sure you take your time and let the clippers do the work. Your pup will appreciate your care and patience and will come out feeling healthier while he waits for his new coat to grow. Don't forget the sunblock in the meantime! 

Success Stories and Grooming Questions

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