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Discussion Starter #1
Snowball was a stray before we adopted him from the local shelter, and while I don't know specifically how long he was a stray, I suspect it was for a few weeks at least. His coat is pretty clean, but the hair on his tail and hiney is all clumpy. It looks like he didn't get brushed when he was shedding his winter coat, and has now matted somewhat, especially around his back legs and his tail. Is there an easier way than just brushing it out? He tolerates it for a few minutes, but I feel like I'm pulling a lot, even if its as gently as possible, to get all the knots out.

I'm also worried about him getting hot during the summer (well, not THIS summer, since its almost over), and was wondering if its okay to shave him? Well, not really shave him, but just clip his coat so that it is short(er) for the summer months. A friend mentioned that it might not be good for his undercoat to cut it too short, but I've seen clipped Eskies before.
 

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My friend groomer always suggests thinning the coat out before clipping it down. Getting out all the undercoat and a de-shed will help a lot in the heat. the groomer can brush the dog out and blow the coat out. works wonders. My husky hates when I brush him but always sits nice for my groomer when she de-sheds him.
 

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I sugest you get a really good comb, and just do a little bit each day, till you have the knots out.
 

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Id suggest getting him in to a groomer. who can get out all the undercoat , matts ect. a good bath, blow dry and brush will do wonders. I wouldnt not suggest shaving, a well groomed dog will not have a issue in alberta summers.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Id suggest getting him in to a groomer. who can get out all the undercoat , matts ect. a good bath, blow dry and brush will do wonders. I wouldnt not suggest shaving, a well groomed dog will not have a issue in alberta summers.
We're not keen on shaving, because shaved Eskies look, well, sad and a little bit hilarious, but I wasn't sure if that was a reasonable option for getting the mats out.

Sigh. I was hoping not to have to take him to a groomer (every time I mention "American Eskimo" when phoning for a quote, I can literally hear a "cha-ching" on the other end, lol). We'll take him to the groomer this weekend - after the thunderstorm and his walk this morning, Snowball isn't so snowy, and it sounds like it is the best option this time. We do plan on doing most of his bathing/grooming ourselves - I really enjoy brushing things (my hair, cat's hair, the dog, FI's beard...) so hopefully once his coat is nice again we can keep it that way!
 

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We're not keen on shaving, because shaved Eskies look, well, sad and a little bit hilarious, but I wasn't sure if that was a reasonable option for getting the mats out.

Sigh. I was hoping not to have to take him to a groomer (every time I mention "American Eskimo" when phoning for a quote, I can literally hear a "cha-ching" on the other end, lol). We'll take him to the groomer this weekend - after the thunderstorm and his walk this morning, Snowball isn't so snowy, and it sounds like it is the best option this time. We do plan on doing most of his bathing/grooming ourselves - I really enjoy brushing things (my hair, cat's hair, the dog, FI's beard...) so hopefully once his coat is nice again we can keep it that way!
Be ready for it to cost you a lot of money, and make sure you really make sure you know that you DO NOT want him shaved. Most groomers will just shave them if they are matted bad enough.

I still sugest you try and do it your self.
 

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you could get the tools you need. I didn't realize you wanted advice on how to do it yourself.

first and for most! do not bathe them before your brush them. this sets in the mats and knots.

You should get a proper undercoat rake and a pin brush and a dematting comb and a shedder.

these tools work wonders! http://wgroom.com/catalog/product_info.php?products_id=1054 <-- you can buy a whole kit here. I know it says for a Husky but their Eskimo one didn't have the tools I would recommend. I think this is a steal too for all the proper tools.

it is really not that difficult to do yourself it just takes TIME. unless of course your dog won't sit still. but that also takes time to train. I bring my dog to the groomer cause she is a friend and does all of my dogs for free. so I bring Leo in 2 or 3 times a year when he starts to lose his undercoat she can get him all cleaned up quickly so I don't have to spend so much time trying to do it myself. she always does better then me but I guess that is why she went to school for it =p
 

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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
I imagine we'll take him to the groomer's once in a while (if it were free I imagine we'd do it all the time!), but I already enjoy brushing him (much to Snowball's chagrin, lol). Have you ever used one of those deshedder tools? Do they actually work/are they worth the money? I've seen them as expensive as $90 and I have a hard time understanding that.

ETA: Note to me, HTML does not work here.
 

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I imagine we'll take him to the groomer's once in a while (if it were free I imagine we'd do it all the time!), but I already enjoy brushing him (much to Snowball's chagrin, lol). Have you ever used one of those deshedder" tools? Do they actually work/are they worth the money? I've seen them as expensive as $90 and I have a hard time understanding that.

ETA: Note to me, HTML does not work here.
http://www.bedbathandbeyond.com/Product.asp?SKU=125952">"deshedder"</a>

I hope that fixed it. (copy and paste the link) It's basicly a furmanator.

Any way, don't waist your money, that will not work on a double coated breed, and I think they shouldn't be alowed near any dogs to be honest, because they can actualy make an animal bald.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thanks for the opinion and the links. Unfortunately we do not have PetCo around here, but I'm sure I can find similar tools at PetSmart or one of the other local pet stores. We already have a metal comb and similar brush for him, but I have a feeling that once we get a rake and de-matting tool, I'll make much better progress getting his coat nice and smooth!

Does anyone have any tips for brushing out his tail? Some of the mats are pretty bad (and he picked up a couple of burrs on the weekend), would it be terrible if I just cut them out with scissors?
 

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Thanks for the opinion and the links. Unfortunately we do not have PetCo around here, but I'm sure I can find similar tools at PetSmart or one of the other local pet stores. We already have a metal comb and similar brush for him, but I have a feeling that once we get a rake and de-matting tool, I'll make much better progress getting his coat nice and smooth!

Does anyone have any tips for brushing out his tail? Some of the mats are pretty bad (and he picked up a couple of burrs on the weekend), would it be terrible if I just cut them out with scissors?
Yes, you can find then at probably any pet store, petco was just the first like in my computer.

If you don't mind the hair being a bit uneven, I would cut them out. The tail is very sesitive.
 

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I imagine we'll take him to the groomer's once in a while (if it were free I imagine we'd do it all the time!), but I already enjoy brushing him (much to Snowball's chagrin, lol). Have you ever used one of those deshedder tools? Do they actually work/are they worth the money? I've seen them as expensive as $90 and I have a hard time understanding that.

ETA: Note to me, HTML does not work here.
Yes Im sure many people would take their dogs often if it were free. IMO most places dont charge enough. tools are very expensive, and get broken by dogs (or cats) often, not to mention the wear and tear on a groomers body. Im 26 and already can feel the issues.

Do not get a furminator or any type.

A pin brush will do mostly nothing. a slicker is where to go. a good warm bath will help release undercoat. but you need a HV dryer too, that is where it really helps.

I would not advise just cutting matts out. if they are that bad.I see on a regular basis what owners do with scissors and its not pretty. And Im not talking about uneven cuts, Im talking about actually cutting a dog open. I even seen it today actually.

Honeslty. id suck it up and take the dog to the groomers if its so bad. It will give you a fresh start and will be so much easier to manage after a pro does the hard work.
 

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I have an eskie. We get her groomed approx every 60days. Because of regular grooming & brushing once a week or so at home she has little issues with knots, just small ones around her ears and "armpits" on occasion. We have her feathers trimmed to a moderate length, her butt gets a "landing strip" or "poop shute" then a good brush/blow out & neat ending up other fur. Overall, super easy to keep up with.

I would suggest finding a good, patient, experienced groomer. Have your pup groomed initially then keep up with it on a routine. I would never fully shave him down, it's not good for their coats.
 

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Thanks for the opinion and the links. Unfortunately we do not have PetCo around here, but I'm sure I can find similar tools at PetSmart or one of the other local pet stores. We already have a metal comb and similar brush for him, but I have a feeling that once we get a rake and de-matting tool, I'll make much better progress getting his coat nice and smooth!

Does anyone have any tips for brushing out his tail? Some of the mats are pretty bad (and he picked up a couple of burrs on the weekend), would it be terrible if I just cut them out with scissors?
Hopefully your pup is as easy as mine with the tail,I grab it at the base then brushing out, the only part of her body she doesn't like me tugging & brushing is her back thighs, go figure, it's where her fur is thickest - yet she has no problem letting the 2 diff groomers we use, she is sweet as ever for both of them.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Hopefully your pup is as easy as mine with the tail,I grab it at the base then brushing out, the only part of her body she doesn't like me tugging & brushing is her back thighs, go figure, it's where her fur is thickest - yet she has no problem letting the 2 diff groomers we use, she is sweet as ever for both of them.
I've been working on him a little bit each day and the matted undercoat near his rear is getting much better - we'll probably be able to get most of it out ourselves, or at least keep working on it until we get a chance to go to the groomers. The mats I'm considering cutting out are at the ends of the feathers on his tail, and his tail is proving to be the most challenging to groom out. Its VERY obvious where I've brushed the mats/knots out, as the rest of it is just long clumps... almost like dreadlocks. He doesn't mind too much when I hold his tail, I just had no idea the best way to hold it.
 
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