Does it hurt to shave a matted dog?

  • Date: January 22, 2023
  • Time to read: 4 min.

If you’ve ever had a matted dog, you know that it can be a difficult and uncomfortable experience trying to groom them. Many people wonder whether it is painful for the dog to shave a matted coat, as the process can seem quite harsh. The truth is, it can be uncomfortable for the dog, but there are steps that can be taken to reduce the discomfort and make the experience as pleasant as possible for your furry friend. In this article, we’ll explore what you need to know about shaving a matted dog, including the risks involved and the best way to go about it.

What Causes Matted Fur in Dogs?

Matted fur in dogs is a common problem for many pet owners. It’s caused by a variety of factors, including poor grooming habits, poor nutrition, and certain medical conditions. Matted fur can be especially common in long-haired breeds, such as shih tzus and poodles, but it can affect any breed of dog. The matted fur can cause discomfort, skin irritation, and even infection if left untreated.

What is the Difference Between Regular Grooming and De-matting?

Regular grooming is important in keeping a dog’s coat healthy and looking its best. This includes brushing and combing the fur to get rid of any tangles and mats. Regular grooming also helps distribute the natural oils in the dog’s coat, which helps keep it healthy and shining.

De-matting is a more intensive process that is necessary when the fur has become so matted that it’s impossible to brush or comb out. De-matting involves cutting the matted fur away in order to get down to the healthy parts of the coat. This can be done with scissors or clippers.

Does It Hurt to Shave a Matted Dog?

The short answer is yes, shaving a matted dog can be painful. This is because the mats are so tight that when the clippers or scissors are used to cut them away, they often pull on the dog’s skin. This can cause pain and discomfort, as well as scratches and cuts.

It’s important to note that while shaving a matted dog can be painful, it’s generally the only way to get rid of the matted fur. If the mats are not removed, the dog’s fur will continue to become more and more matted, leading to additional discomfort and irritation.

How Can You Make Shaving a Matted Dog Less Painful?

Shaving a matted dog can be a painful process, but there are a few things you can do to make it as comfortable as possible for your pet.

First and foremost, make sure you are using the proper tools. Professional-grade clippers are best for removing matted fur, as they are designed to cut through the tangles with minimal pulling. It’s also important to use the right blades and setting, as the wrong blades can cause the clippers to pull on the dog’s skin.

Another important step is to make sure your dog is properly sedated or anesthetized during the process. This will help keep your pet calm and relaxed, which will make the process less painful.

Finally, it’s important to take things slow and steady. Don’t rush the process as this can cause your pet more pain. Take your time and work through the mats one section at a time.


Shaving a matted dog can be a painful process, but it’s often the only way to get rid of the mats. With the proper tools, sedation, and technique, you can make the process as comfortable as possible for your pet. If you’re unsure of how to proceed, it’s best to consult with a professional groomer who can provide the necessary guidance and expertise to ensure your pet’s safety and comfort.

## Common Myths About Shaving a Matted Dog
It is a common misconception that shaving a matted dog will cause them pain. However, this is not the case. Shaving a matted dog can be uncomfortable, but it is not painful. In fact, the process can help to relieve the discomfort caused by the matting. Additionally, it is a myth that shaving a matted dog will encourage the coat to become matted more easily in the future. Regular brushing and grooming can help to prevent matting and keep the coat healthy and comfortable.

Frequently Asked Questions

Does it hurt to shave a matted dog?

Yes, it can be painful for a dog to have their matted fur shaved off. A professional groomer will be able to use special tools and techniques to minimize discomfort for your pet.

How can I prevent matting in my dog’s fur?

Regular grooming and brushing are the best ways to prevent matting in your dog’s fur. You should brush your dog at least once a week, and make sure to pay extra attention to areas prone to matting such as the underarms, neck, and behind the ears. Additionally, consider using a de-shedding shampoo or conditioner to reduce the amount of fur your dog sheds.


Matting of fur in dogs is a common issue that can be caused by poor grooming habits, nutrition, and medical conditions. It is usually more common in long-haired breeds, and can cause discomfort, irritation, and infection if left untreated. Regular grooming, such as brushing and combing, is the best way to keep a dog’s coat healthy. However, if the fur is matted, de-matting may be necessary. This involves cutting away the matted fur and can be painful for the dog. To make the process less painful, use the right tools, sedate the dog, and take it slow. Professional groomers can provide guidance to ensure the dog’s safety and comfort.

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