First, lightly brush the mat with a soft bristle brush. In order to untangle tougher mats, move the fingers across the fur without yanking on the individual hairs. It is possible that you will need to clip the tip of the hair before using a brush to completely remove the mats. When clipping the fur, use caution because some mats are close to the skin and you could end up hurting your guinea pigs if you are not careful.
If the fur on your guinea pigs is heavily matted and you don’t have much experience clipping their hair, you may need to take them to a professional groomer or a veterinarian for assistance.
Getting a professional to do the job for the first time while you learn the process by closely observing them can be well worth the investment of time and money.
In their attempts to untangle the mats in their guinea pigs, many newbies end up injuring their guinea pigs, which is not uncommon.
Does brushing help in getting rid of matted hairs in guinea pigs?
Brushing your guinea pigs’ hairs on a regular basis is one of the most effective ways to keep them from becoming matted.
Most long-haired guinea pigs require brushing on a daily or alternate-day basis in order to prevent matting from occurring in the first place.
Regular brushing not only aids in the prevention of matted hairs, but it also removes loose hair and clears away any debris that may have accumulated in the coat.
During the shedding season, you may need to brush your guinea pigs on a daily basis, as they have a tendency to shed their hair quickly.
What causes mats in guinea pigs?
First and foremost, in order to effectively prevent matted hairs in your guinea pigs, you must first understand what it is that causes matted fur in the first place.
Yes, irregular brushing is one of the most common causes of matted hair in guinea pigs, but there are a few other factors that can contribute to the condition.
- Inadequate living conditions, including soiled bedding and a soiled cage
- Any significant changes in your guinea pig’s diet should be avoided.
- Health problems such as diarrhea, etc.
- A deficiency in dietary fiber and Vitamin A is observed.
- Hair that is excessively long around the grease glands.
- Making the mistake of using low-quality shampoo to bathe your guinea pigs.
Where do mats occur in guinea pigs?
Long-haired guinea pigs can have matted hair at any part of the body.
However, some areas are more susceptible to get matted hair if not taken care of on time. These areas include:
- Around the grease gland or end of the tailbone
- Under the mouth, around the chin area
- On the belly side
- Alongside the back legs
How do you get rid of matted hair on guinea pigs?
If your guinea pigs have only a small mat of hair, you can untangle it by running your fingers through it gently or clipping the tips of the hair and running a soft bristle brush through the fur.
However, guinea pigs with severely matted hair may require the services of a professional groomer or veterinarian.
If you have some experience with your guinea pigs, including handling and grooming them, you might want to give it a shot as well.
Here are a few steps you may need to take in this situation:
Table of Contents
Comb out the hair
If you are ready to deal with the matted fur on your own you must first begin by combing your guinea pig’s fur.
Start by running your fingers across your guinea pig’s body. It shall help in untangling some hairs and make things easier for you.
Do make sure not to tug your guinea pig’s hair as it can hurt your guinea pigs, and they might show aggression in some cases.
If there is some tough mat, you need to hold the mat within your fingers and then brush the ends off.
Make sure you comb gently and remove any loose hair from their fur.
If you have neglected the grooming of your guinea pigs for a while, then they might have a matted hair around their legs.
The matted hairs around the hind legs are hotspots for urine strains as well. You can use scissors to trim the hairs safely.
However, make sure you leave some hairs as it helps in protecting the soft skin of their legs.
Most guinea pigs find it uncomfortable when you are trying to brush their belly areas and back of their body.
Try to ask someone to hold your guinea pigs and try to comb the mat gently.
Be careful and gentle while you get to their back as they don’t enjoy being touched there.
Clip the matted fur
Sometimes your guinea pigs might have a rough mat that is hard to comb out. Under such circumstances, you might need to trim their matted fur with scissors.
Matted fur around the tip of the hairs can be easy to handle and trim. However, sometimes your guinea pigs might have severe mats that are close to the skin.
In such scenarios there are mostly two options with you:
- Trim the top of the hair and gently try to comb the mat out.
- Use a mat rake to separate the hairs from the skin and trim the hairs carefully.
However, some people can find using the tool a little tough on their own. You might need to get someone to hold your guinea pigs well while you do the job.
A small bath
Guinea pigs might have a thick mat of hairs around their grease glands and around their bum area.
Now, if your guinea pigs have a thick matt or hard hair clumps around their bum, you might need to give them a bum bath first.
Begin by placing your guinea pigs in a sink and running lukewarm water. You might need to use some natural shampoo to clean the hair clumps and loosen the mat a little bit.
Let it lather up and sit for a minute or two and then rinse the shampoo properly.
Reward your guinea pigs
Once you are done with the grooming process, you must give a treat as a reward to your guinea pigs.
It is a way of positive reinforcement where your guinea pigs learn that they will get a treat if they behave correctly.
Also, offering some of their favorite veggies while grooming your guinea pigs might keep them calm and steady, making the process of grooming easy. You should definitely give it a try as well.
How often should you brush your guinea pig to avoid mats?
At the very least, you should brush them on consecutive days to keep their coats healthy and matt-free, but you should brush them every day if possible.
Additionally, if your guinea pigs are shedding, you may need to clean them on a daily basis to remove excess loose hair that can cause matting.
Try to clip their hairs on a regular basis if you want to keep your guinea pigs in good health and make grooming easier for yourself.
Trim it to an inch or two in length to make the grooming process as simple as possible.
As a bonus, it would be beneficial to keep an eye out for hay and litter that might get stuck in their fur and cause matted hair in their companion guinea pig.
How to prevent matted hairs in guinea pigs?
My understanding is that getting rid of matted hair on your guinea pigs can be extremely challenging.
In order to avoid matted hair in the first place, here are some quick pointers to remember:
- Brush your guinea pigs’ fur on a regular basis.
- Remove any debris or hay that has become stuck in their fur.
- Make certain that you are using high-quality bedding. Avoid using paper bedding or wood shavings, as these can become stuck in their fur and cause them to itch. Guineadad fleece liners are a personal favorite of mine, especially if you have long-haired guinea pigs.
- Always remember to clean the bum area of your guinea pigs, and to give them a bum bath on a regular basis.
- Avoid making frequent dietary changes because this can result in diarrhea. Their hair will become matted in no time due to the soft poop.
- Keep the fur on your guinea pigs clipped to prevent them from getting sick. Grooming is usually made easier by regular clipping and maintaining a 1-2 inch length of fur on the dog.
- Maintain a clean living environment for your guinea pigs, as a dirty living environment can have a negative impact on their coats and fur.