Pet Grooming: Mats, Tangles and Daily Maintenance


One of the biggest problems I see pets owners face when it comes to grooming their pets has to be dealing with the tangled coats of their long-coated breeds. Given everybody’s busy schedule, what can we do? While I’m in no position to teach people how to manage their time (I think even the worst time managers can teach me a thing or two), I’m able to offer some advice on how to minimize the problem and make it less painful for you and your furry ones.

But what causes those tangles in the first place? Luckily, it’s not as mysterious as how earphones play boy scout knots in your pockets, and there are only four factors:

  1. Moisture
  2. Pressure
  3. Dirt
  4. Friction

The one thing advertising is right about

dog hair under microscope

I believe you’ve seen TV commercials for shampoos and hair treatment products, and they’ll show you the difference between damaged hair and healthy hair under the microscope. If you haven’t, imagine that our hairs are covered with fish scales, all pointing towards the tip (the fish head is at the scalp, and the tail is the tip). So the dog and human hair alike, when the hair shaft is exposed to the elements, will open up, creating barbs, and with a combination of the aforementioned factors, the coat sticks to each other, very much like Velcro fasteners.

Now recall the places where tangle usually forms on your pet:

  • Is it because it has not been dried thoroughly after the coat got wet (Moisture)? e.g., The overall body, feet, beard, and paw pads.
  • Does it form in places where it has contact with resting surfaces (Pressure)? e.g., Neck, four legs.
  • Easily soiled areas (Dirt)? e.g., beards, legs, between the legs.
  • Or does it occur in places where hair rubs against each other or other objects often (Friction)?

Friction is everywhere. This is usually the main culprit that brings all the factors together and makes it worse (it’s also the main reason your earphones get tangled in your bag). Therefore, it is imperative that your pet gets a good brush every other day to prevent mats from forming, paying extra attention to the inside of the legs, armpits, behind the ears, and neck. These are usually the areas where tangles form quickly, as well as areas we tend to neglect when grooming.

It’s too late…

So, if you are reading this but your pet is already in bad shape, what can you do?

Well, if it’s really in bad shape, please, have it groomed and use this opportunity to let you and your pet get accustomed to frequent grooming. More importantly, de-matting the pet is a very uncomfortable process. Always put humanity over vanity.

But if it’s only a 2-3 knots here and there, you could do the following:

  1. I would suggest getting a bottle of de-tangling spray from your pet store.
  2. Spray the matted areas and let it sit for half an hour.
  3. Try to loosen the mat with your fingers, separating it in all directions.
  4. Use a slicker brush and brush in all directions. Use small strokes to minimize damage to the hair and skin.
  5. It’s going to take a while, so be patient.
  6. Prevention is better than cure. Brush your pet every other day.


With the proper technique, your pet can maintain the straight look of a magazine every day. It’s not that difficult!

What you’ll need:

  1. Brushes (Pin brush for long coats >8cm. Slicker brush for coats between 1-8cm. Any shorter, use a grooming glove or curry brush, and that’s all you need.)
  2. Metal comb (Choose a medium to wide-toothed)
  3. Spray bottle filled with water (If you feel your pet deserves better, get a grooming spray, preferably something lightly scented or fragrance-free. I use Fabulous Grooming Spray from #1 All Systems. If your pet is suffering from skin problems, you can add a little of Zymox enzymatic rinse or Rejuvenating Bath from Chitocure into filtered/distilled water and use it as a grooming spray.)

The how:

  1. Lightly spritz the coat. Making the coat slightly damp will help reduce static friction while brushing.
  2. Using one hand to control their limbs and body, hold the brush with the other hand. If you’re using a slicker brush, make sure the face of the brush is parallel to the skin to minimize abrasion. If your pet struggles, make sure you communicate what is acceptable behavior and what is not. Reward and reprimand accordingly.
  3. Brush against the lay of the coat, using short bouncy strokes rather than one long pull. This will help reduce friction and prevent you from using too much force. The section of the coat is completed when you feel no resistance from the brush.
  4. Note that you should brush the coating layer by layer, using your hand to hold down part of the coat and only moving on when one section is completed. This ensures that the whole body and the entire length of the hair are covered.
  5. If you find a sizeable mat, follow the aforementioned instructions.
  6. Finally, go through the whole body with the metal comb. If the comb gets stuck (Girls would get this. Hurts, doesn’t it?), comb out the tangle, then check with the comb again.
  7. You’re done, and great job.

Well, the whole thing sounds long because I want to get into the details of it. But once you get the hang of it, you’ll do everything like it’s second nature. Besides, it’s just brushing. It’s really not that hard.

Anyways, I’ll try to do an instructional video soon. It’s tough visualizing instructions like these, isn’t it? Everybody has their interpretation, right?

So if you have any tips, questions, or thoughts, please comment below!

How to remove urine odors naturally and effectively


How to remove urine smells

Suppose you’re unlucky enough to have your pet pee on upholstery and carpets. In that case, you’d realize that as much as you try to blot or
wash the fabric, you could never seem to remove the smell, and even if you think you did, you’d still find your pet going back to pee at the same spot, even on easy to clean hard floors! The only thing I hate about their acute sense of smell.

And I hate that their skin seems to be allergic to everything.

You can try bleach, Dettol, and Febreze for all you want, but it’s not going to do a thorough job, and worse still, the chemicals used might cause adverse skin reactions in pets with sensitive skin. On a side note, most pets are sensitive to synthetic phenols in detergents and disinfectants, so if there’s a need to use surfactants on the floor, add a little dish soap into the water used for mopping the floor and mopping as usual. Then, add around two tablespoons of vinegar to a fresh pail of water and mop the floor again. This will neutralize the soap and, at the same time, deodorize and disinfect the floor as well!


  1. If the accident is on your bed, carpet, or sofa, try to blot the fresh stain with a dry cloth and continue until you’ve removed it as much as possible.
  2. What I like to do with soiled fabric is to wash it with regular soap first. From experience, skipping this step and going straight to deodorizing agents wouldn’t work either. Mix dish soap with water into a spray bottle and try this mixture on an inconspicuous area to ensure the fabric is colorfast. If the color doesn’t run, spray on the stained area and blot it up again. Do it a few times.
  3. All-purpose enzyme cleaners in organic stores are usually great for removing smells, and you can spray the stain and leave it to dry. Enzyme cleaners are also usually safe on fabrics, but as a general precaution, it’s always good to spot test. If your pet goes back to pee at the same spot, repeat steps 1 & 2, and proceed to step 4.
  4. Mix a solution of 3% Hydrogen Peroxide and baking soda and again do a spot test first. Then spray it onto the stain and let it do its work. The mixture works with the urine and releases oxygen, which cleans, deodorizes, and works like Vanish Power O2.
  5. When the surface has dried, you may want to spray a diluted solution of white vinegar to neutralize any excess alkali and odor.
  6. With hard floors, it’s much easier as you’d only need to wipe up the stain and spray with deodorizing agents like Enzymatic cleaner, Hydrogen Peroxide, and baking soda mix or vinegar and leave it to dry. However, if you’re using a cloth to wipe up the stain, remember to soak the cloth with any deodorizing agents afterward.


Whatever you do, don’t be Kiasu and add whatever you can find together, thinking that it’ll give it an extra cleaning boost. Combining Hydrogen Peroxide and vinegar, in particular, produces a potent oxidizing agent known as Peracetic acid and produces toxic fumes, which are harmful to the lungs with long-term exposure. However, spritzing one after the next would not produce any harmful byproducts. Chemistry.

Here you go, no need to be spending $15 on a small bottle of ‘urine odor removal’ or whatever from pet shops. Let me know how it’s working for you, and leave me a comment if you have any questions!

About the blog

Hi, and welcome to The Grooming Table’s page!

I hope this effort of mine can improve the lives of pets and animals

I’m excited that I finally found the courage and time to start writing about pet care. After working in the pet industry as a pet groomer for almost 3 years now, it’s heartening to see people going to great lengths to care for their pets, as well as less fortunate animals. Yet, on the other hand, there are so owners who wish to take better care of there but have no idea how to do so, or worse yet, getting wrong or obsolete information.

So often, I’ll have pets that come in, which are so mentally out of balance really gave me the urgency to start communicating to the masses. There is only so much I can do if I just educate my customers one by one. I’m really excited about the fact that this has the potential of being able to help more animals and their owners achieve higher levels of relationships, health, and mental balance. So please help me to help them.

If you find my articles, tips, etc. useful, please share with your friends and encourage them to share as well so that all could benefit and hopefully start them on a journey towards taking better care of their pets. If just a handful would do so, I would have served my purpose. But of course, I will continue to strive harder so that more than just a handful can benefit. In addition, please, give me your feedback regarding anything at all – content, layout, English, anything! I’m new to this, and I would be very, very grateful.


This website has been created with the sole purpose of educating fellow pet lovers on the different aspects of pet care, focusing on natural and holistic approaches in an Asian context.

Though this journey has been rewarding working as a pet groomer, it has also brought me great pain seeing all the animals who could have deserved better – and they all should deserve better. But I can’t blame society because I used to be one of them. That’s why in the articles, I’ll try to include numerous tips and tricks that I’ve learned to help you save time and money (but please don’t ever scrimp on quality food and products) while keeping your pet in tip-top condition.

“I really don’t have the time!”

It’s a chore taking care of your pets – that used to be my excuse, and I agree it takes time and effort. But yet, our furry ones have continued to give us their 100% of their love (I’m writing this, and my two years old Silky-look-alike-’Yorkie’ is jumping non-stop, begging for my attention.), and that’s one of the main reasons I joined the pet industry – it’s my way of giving back to them.

From then on, I started reading whatever I could on pet care, and I realized that a lot of people could really benefit from the information out there! Just that there’s a small problem: I can only help that many pets as a groomer. I needed to reach out to more people.

Help me, help them.

So again, if you feel the same way I am, if you feel more animals deserve help, do me a favor, would you? If you find this website helpful, let your friends and family know. Secondly, I’m still learning, and I hope this community should also build on each others’ knowledge. If you have a topic you feel strongly about, do write to me, and I’ll post it on this site (credited to you, of course). But please cite your sources if you have made any references in your articles. It is just to help readers find additional information on the subject matter and avoid plagiarism.

Help spread the word.

For the love of those who love us the most,


P.S. If you’re interested in knowing more about the pet grooming services we have to offer, please give us a call @ 9199 2024 or 9489 5882. Especially if your dogs have chronic skin problems, we’ll love to see how we can use natural products to help. Looking forward to seeing you!