What Causes Matted Fur in Cats?

Did you know a single cat has about 130,000 hairs per square inch of their body? Imagine keeping all that fur under control! For the most part, cats do a great job on their own since they are excellent self-groomers. But every once in a while, their hair gets tangled or matted. When this happens, its important to remove the matted cat fur before it causes serious health problems.

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Why is my cat's fur suddenly matted?

Cat hair can become matted either because of shedding or movement. When a cat sheds, hair can tangle with the intact hairs and form knots. On the other hand, frequent movement can cause the fur to mat as well. … Outdoor cats and long-haired cats are more likely to develop mats than short-haired, indoor felines.

How do I get rid of my cats matted fur?

Sprinkle a little cornstarch or talcum powder in the area of the mat, and gently work it around with your fingers. Gently pull the mat up away from the skin, so you can see where the skin is. If the cat resists, take a break and speak in a soothing voice, petting the cat until it relaxes.

Does matted hair hurt cats?

The mats can become uncomfortable and even painful for your cat. Some mats with develop with regular movement (at top of left), and others build up over time without grooming. They also cause skin irritation and infection. Most mats will come out with gentle teasing and brushing, but hard mats can require extra work.

Why is my older cat getting matted fur?

If you have an older cat you may notice that they have started to get matted fur. This is pretty common in older cats. Arthritis often prevents the from being able to reach parts of their body like their back and hips. Older cats also tend to not be as good at bathing themselves overall, which can lead to matted fur.

A cats coat of fur is one of the best things about them. Usually, their fur coat is silky smooth and constantly clean due to the huge amount of time that cats spend grooming. Yet, when their fur starts to get matted, it is an obvious change and can be a cause for concern.

On the other hand, Siamese cats or British Shorthairs are less likely to suffer from matted fur, even if their grooming habits do go out the window. While it is normal for cats to shed their fur, the undercoat can become caught in the topcoat during the process and become tangled, leading to matting.

This explains why the most common places on your cats body for the fur to mat is in areas that have a lot of high friction, such as: Usually, cats will use the bristles on their tongues to comb through their fur and remove any dirt and excess oils. It is essentially like us not brushing our hair for weeks on ends pretty quickly it will become a matted and tangled mess.

It means they can configure themselves into all kinds of unimaginable positions and successfully clean themselves from the tip of their nose to their tail. Again, a trip to the vet is advised so they can determine the condition causing mouth pain and prescribe an effective treatment. Some cats will groom excessively if they are stressed, which will cause bald patches in their fur and lead to hair loss.

This could be something as small as there being a new person or pet in your home, loud noises such as a fireworks display or building work, or even just a tweak to their usual routine. Cats are sensitive creatures, and whereas a change may feel small and insignificant to you, it can trigger anxiety in our furry friends! It is also possible that there is no major issue with your cat, such as ongoing arthritis or obesity, but rather that your feline is just feeling a little under the weather.

You can help detangle the hair, spread the natural oils along the surface, and clean away any pieces of dirt or loose bits of fur that your cat has missed. Ideally, you should establish a regular brushing routine to help your cat get used to being groomed and relieve any stress and anxiety. If you cannot commit to regular or daily brushing, and dont want to take your cat to a professional groomer, the least you should do is keep an eye out for tangles and knots and catch them early on.

Problem areas should be your main focus, which includes places like the groin and rear, under the collar, between the back legs, and behind the ears. This is more important for a long hair cat as matted fur is more common and can help catch small tangles. Always opt for a wide-tooth comb over a regular brush as the bigger gaps between the teeth will help ease the pain.

Tugging can really pull your cats fur and cause them pain, but smaller and quicker motions are more bearable. For obvious reasons, a dematting comb for cats with matted hair is a dangerous tool if not used correctly as they are sharp. Many people prefer using a detangler for matted fur over a dematting comb as it is a lot safer and is less likely to cause your cat any pain.

You dont need to head to the pet store to purchase a matted cat hair removal cream; you can create a homemade detangler spray with regular items found around your home. In fact, detangling matted hair with olive oil is extremely effective, quick to use, and cheap! For this reason, be sure to not apply as much and to continue working the baby oil into the fur and gently combing through the mat until it comes loose.

However, baby oil works best on long hair cats with matted fur as you can keep the product away from their skin. If this is the case, a professional cat groomer will be able to help remove the matted clumps of hair. However, any fur that they do have to cut off will grow back over time, so dont worry if your cat looks a little strange with a bald patch for now!

Also, mats that are so tight to your cats skin that you cannot get your fingers of a comb underneath will also need to be removed by a vet, usually under sedation. While initially the pain will be mild, it will get worse as the matted cat fur worsens, potentially leading to mood and behavioral changes, such as increased stress and anxiety, loss of appetite, and not using their litter box. If bacteria enter these open wounds, your cat can develop a pocket of pus under the skin called an abscess which can see the infection spread around the body with serious consequences.

Fleas and ticks will love hiding in your cats matted fur and it acts as the ideal place for them to breed. If your pet has a large and hard clump of matted fur in between their hind legs, it may make walking, moving, or even going to the bathroom more challenging and painful. Matted fur on your cats face or neck could also prevent them from eating or breathing properly.

Matted cat hair is where clumps of fur become severely knotted and tangled together, trapping dirt inside. Preventing matted fur is crucial and can be done by regularly grooming your cat, feeding them a balanced diet, and catching any tangles that do form early. That being said, if a matted patch of fur has gone unnoticed, you can remove it at home using one of the above methods or seek help from a professional.

Remember, while matted cat hair is not a huge problem in itself, it can lead to several serious issues. Therefore, effective prevention and treatment are essential in your cats health and happiness, so dont neglect those mats!

Cats are fastidious groomers spending 50% of their waking hours attending to their personal hygiene. Their ability to maintain such high standards of personal grooming are due in part to the bristle like barbs on a cats tongue and to their flexibility.

So matting of the fur may be your first indicator that your pet is anemic, isnt breathing well, has kidney failure, is diabetic, has heart disease or even cancer. When fur matts around your cats hind quarters it can obstruct normal urination and defecation and lead to urinary tract infections, constipation, and moist dermatitis.

Why Matted Cat Fur is Bad

Healthy and tangle-free cat fur allows for a continuous air flow to your cat’s skin. Matted cat fur, on the other hand, damages tissue by preventing oxygen and moisture from reaching it. This can lead to dry, scaly, and sometimes irritated skin. When your cat notices this change, they start to groom more which could increase the amount of hair they ingest and cause other health problems.Another issue that you should take care of right away are mats that form on the back of your cat’s legs. Because of their location, they can trap urine and feces, leading to a skin infection. Neglected mats can also become a breeding ground for parasites.

How to Prevent Matted Cat Fur

The longer your cat’s hair, the more likely it is to mat. To stop mats from forming, add regular brushing and combing into your pet’s routine. During this time, run your fingers through your their coat. This will help you feel any clumps of fur below the surface that need immediate attention.