It is a fact: cats mat. Purebred or domestic, long hair or short hair, the cat’s hair can become matted over time. Cats are naturally oily. Their skin produces oil that spreads throughout the coat if given enough time. Some cats are greasier than others and some become greasier with time, especially if they have certain health issues.
The best defense is a thorough de-greasing bath and blow dry. We provide these services as professional cat groomers.
Cats naturally shed. This is true regardless of coat length. In fact, short hair cats usually shed more than long hair breeds. As the hair sheds, the greasiness of the coat makes it gummy enough to cause some of the shedding hair to stick to the hair that is not shedding. Thus, creating a small tangle. Usually these small tangles are imperceptible to the eye. Over time, hair continues to shed under and around the tangle. Instead of falling away, it sticks to the existing tangle, making it bigger. At this point, it becomes a mat. Several mats can form at one time, in various places on a cat’s body. Eventually, if ignored, these mats will come together to create one giant mat, or pelt. The pelt also begins to pull closer to the skin at this point. If too much time goes by before it is removed, the pelt will be so close that it pulls on the skin causing sores and possibly small tears on the delicate, thin skin.
Photo shows an example of a very severely matted cat. The pelted hair must be shaved off very carefully as the skin underneath may be sore, irritated, and may even be hiding wounds, fleas, bruising, and more. Only trained professional cat groomers should attempt a groom like this.