Updated: May 17, 2022
If you have ever heard this response from a groomer there is a long, long history of frustration, sweat, tears and maybe even a few bite marks to back it up. Dog hair is a blessing and a curse. Mostly a blessing to the dog for a few natural reasons, keeping them warm, keeping them cool, and protecting them in a fight. For us two legged types it is a blessing because when taken care of that dog hair is beautiful, soft, sweet smelling and fun to be around. Just like our hair, any long-coated dog will need regular brushing and maintenance. This is why you might have heard a groomer say, "Doodles aren't for everyone." You might also hear the groomer say things like, "It’s important to brush out your dog's coat so it doesn't matt up." Well, we are aware that is harder than it seems, easier said than done, and partially why we all have jobs. Much like a 4-year-old child with long hair it can be a wrestling match to get a brush through your dog's coat if approached in any manner other than some version of the dog believing it was their idea. How do you do that? Generally, it needs to be done methodically, with regularity, and with a good tool i.e. comb/slicker brush. These tools are not cheap. The slicker brush we regularly recommend is the Chris Christensen Slicker Brush. It is NOT cheap (Currently $68 on Amazon), but effective when used...let me repeat that last part again, when used...meaning it has to be applied to the dog's coat with regularity and frequency. That frequency is something the owner will have to decide on if they want to have a fluffy dog. It also is imperative if you want a dog you can interact with on a regular basis. Why did I say that? Well, if you have ever had your haired tied in knots then had someone try to brush your hair, you might very well try to bite them as well. Dogs live in their coats and if they become uncomfortable, they tend to get irritable and aggressive. Matting is caused by dense tangles and knots. It's a painful condition that can lead to other health concerns such as infections or skin irritations and can also mask other health issues or parasites. Mats cut off the air flow in your dog's hair and can trap moisture, which can cause irritation and sores on your dog. Even mild matting can be painful, but in severe cases, matting can cut off circulation to your dog's skin and cause hematomas or balding. In some circumstances, matting may be so severe that you would need to take your dog to a veterinarian for treatment. Check out this link for a great youtube video about how to brush your dog: How to Brush your Doodle
Try to make brushing a time to relax and chill for you and your pet. Maybe you start slowly by doing a bit while sitting on the floor or couch. Maybe it has treats associated with it. The idea is to make it a good time for all involved so that if there are knots or matts to be worked through it is not a big deal, just a moment of discomfort in a usual relaxing activity.
Feel free to share your tips and tricks for brushing your dog!
Thanks for reading!
Chris Christensen Slicker Brush