Neglected dog with severely matted hair coatHair mats most commonly occur in dogs and cats with medium to long hair (Persian or Himalayan cats or Golden Retrievers as examples). A common area for mat formation that is frequently neglected is behind the ears. Routine brushing and grooming is recommended in these breeds to prevent mat formation. The picture on the right is what can happen when pets with long hair coats are neglected and not groomed properly. Infection and irritation can develop underneath the mats.
Hair mats can also develop secondary to itch as dogs and cats chew, lick or scratch. Regardless of the cause, mats can pull at the skin and cause pain. The skin underneath the mat is prone to bacterial skin infection.
- Bacterial infection (Pyoderma)
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