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Discussion Starter #1
So I traveled for a full week and came back to a completely unbrushed poodle... full of matted hair. I had to completely shave off his awesome hawk we’ve been working on for a while.... Though I am so so so grateful my dad watched him while I was away, he didn’t brush him once which was my only special request (on top of feeding and letting him outside)

His legs were a MESS. Fully matted and it took so long to get them to look decent but still contained thick unbreakable mats. I’m still in shock how they got so bad.
He’s got a grooming appointment with a professional this upcoming Tuesday that I’m praying can take the mats out.... well I was...

I came home tonight and my mom told me she gave Norman’s legs a bath with shampoo and conditioner because he got muddy playing outside. Totally sweet of her and very kind!! But she did not brush his legs before or after showering and they air dried... and I couldn’t get a brush through his poms.... not at all....

I did all of the tricks I’ve learned, used my special combs and products... but they were so matted y’all... his left back paw was also bleeding from him biting and licking at one mat. I’m so embarrassed !!! I feel like I’ve failed him...

I’m going to have to ask the groomer to shave off all his poms and start from scratch... but I’m not sure if I can get them back to how they were because his hair is growing back with Extreme tight curls and they won’t straighten out. Not even with blow drying!!! I think his adult coat is tight curls and his puppy coat was wavy.

is it possible to ever grow his poms back with tight curls?? Or should I just keep his legs straight cut.
Also how long would it take to get them back to being about 2-3 inches long??? I bet it’s half a year if not more!!!

I feel so grateful that my family took care of him while I was on travel and that my mom took time out of her day to wash him. But y’all i can’t tell how my one single request when I left is to brush him once day. That was my only special request! its not their fault and I don’t want to sound like im complaining with their help. I just hate that his fur looks like he’s never been groomed well a day in his life.... i just needed to vent!!!!!
 

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Oh Noooo! I can kind of relate- my husband's coworker stayed at our house when we went on vacation two years ago. At the time we had two mastiffs- one a adolescent and one mature. He mixed them up (even though they are different colors) and put the wrong one in the crate all week! Came back to some chewed up furniture. Sigh.
 

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Believe it or not, it could be the conditioner. A groomer introduced me to Chubbs Sugar Soap for sensitive skin, it comes in a bar and you can get it on Amazon. My Poodle has cotton hair and until this soap I was having to shave her down every few months. Her hair would just become felt everytime I bathed her. It may be her particuliar kind of hair but the groomer who introduced me has a competing white standard poodle and her hair is extremely long. I do not use conditioner, I do air dry, I do use detangler and I'm able to maintain her coat under 4" with this strange Kong curry comb that nobody thought would work- but it truly does. The groomer doesn't rinse out condition but she does use an oil- My girl is already a dust magnet so I'm ok without the oil for now. Hope this helps. Don't give up-you know how quickly those poms can grow back and they look so chic.
 

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That’s too bad. Here you were so happy to come home to your dog only to find these horrible mats. People who haven’t raised poodles just don’t understand coat maintenance.

Is your dog going through the dreaded coat change? If he is that may have made things much worse. Most people clip their dogs short during it because they mat like crazy even when you comb them regularly.

Thank goodness their hair grows back, it will seem like forever but it won’t take long.
 

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Oh Noooo! I can kind of relate- my husband's coworker stayed at our house when we went on vacation two years ago. At the time we had two mastiffs- one a adolescent and one mature. He mixed them up (even though they are different colors) and put the wrong one in the crate all week! Came back to some chewed up furniture. Sigh.
My jaw just dropped. Eeeeeeeeesh. That is a pretty spectacular mistake.

SamieNorman, that really sucks. I'm sorry. Maybe next time could you ask someone else to help with the daily brushing? If you have any teens or kids in your family, that could be a nice job for them.
 

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I'm so sorry that sounds really annoying. I'm sure he'll be back to his glamorous self in no time! I guess it differs depending on the dog, but Misha seems to grow about an inch a month, or close to that. I bet they'll look normal within a few months. The curls could also be dependent on length. Short hair always curls way more for me. I can blow dry a longer coat much more successfully than a short coat.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks all for the messages!!! And I asked my father and my sister to brush him. They both said yes when I left but apparently they didn’t think it was necessary.

and you’re right they have never owned a poodle or an animal that needs to be groomed!! So much so that my dad thinks that me cutting his hair what what creates the matting... makes no sense!! Unfortunately I don’t have anyone else. My fiance and I are long distance due to him being in the military or I know he would do it easily.
But who knows. Maybe I will like it short and curly!!!
But yes I think he’s going through a coat change, hard to tell. But it’s almost like ever 5 seconds he gets a tangle somewhere!!! I’ve been blessed that his head has been in pretty good shape. Just praying I don’t ever have to start over on his head....

But thank you all so so so much for agreeing that it’s a bit frustrating!! I feel like I can’t travel now until I know my family understands or until I find someone to help out.
Grrr!!!! His poor legs look like patch work!!! lol!!!
but Norman is happy and healthy and that’s all I could ask for. On the bright side... I’ll have easier brushing while it’s cut short!!! :)
 

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I’m sorry this happened. I know how proud you are of your boy and how well you maintain his coat.

But to be honest, I’m not surprised. Not many people understand how important it is to brush a poodle’s coat and what an awful mess it can become if you don’t. And how fast.

The good news is hair grows back.
 

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Once he’s finished the coat change it gets easier. It’s possible that in the future it will be okay to leave him for a week.

I left my dog with my daughter on her farm. We were gone a little more than a week this summer. Every day after running in the fields my dog made a bee line to a muddy depression for a mud bath. Every day my daughter washed and hosed her off in the barn before taking her in. Air dried, no combing. My dog had a few small mats that I was able to comb out in her very long pompoms when we got home.

Consider the German clip, it’s a gorgeous short hair look for poodles.
 

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How old is Norman now? When Annie was 7 or 8 months, she had GORGEOUS Miami pompoms. That was roughly when she was starting coat change. We went to my friends cottage for the weekend... and I had to shave them off. Even though i'd tried to brush every evening, I couldn't compete with being in and out of the lake + pine sap.

I feel your pain! They will grow back.

Right now, i'm waiting impatiently for coat change to be over. It's hitting her head and ears right now, so those are short too.
 

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I’m going to have to ask the groomer to shave off all his poms and start from scratch... but I’m not sure if I can get them back to how they were because his hair is growing back with Extreme tight curls and they won’t straighten out. Not even with blow drying!!! I think his adult coat is tight curls and his puppy coat was wavy.
Done correctly, it is absolutely possible to blow out the coat straight, no matter how thick or curly, I do it all the time with mine....what kind of dryer are you using?
 

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Can the old guy pop in to urge calm? lol
I've had Tonka for over ten years now and I can't begin to count the number of different styles he's gone through... from German to Continental. They're fun to play with.
It was interesting to see what you were doing with that 'Hawk.
But it will all grow back again, and again, and again... ;)

Best of luck!
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Norman is 11 months old yesterday! I think a German cut would look great on him I completely agree! Just mad I had to shave that gorgeous Mohawk.
dryer : shelandy 3.2HP from Amazon. Dries perfectly!! But I must not do it well enough to straighten it. Will need to look into that I guess.
Really hoping I can become a better groomer myself. I have studied this forum and many many videos. I am pretty proud of my work for a beginner! I even managed to do a great face shave with just a few beard hairs left lol.

I hope you’re right about the cost change. He’s my first poodle so I really don’t know the indicators for a true cost change. When he was around... 7-8 months old his coloring changed from grey to blonde!! And got super curly on his body. Now it’s happening on his legs and head but no color change only the curls becoming tight.

I got new shampoo and conditioner that was recommended by one of it members which I wouldn’t thank enough. I love it. Really helped with his tangles. I think I just need practice on how to properly comb out a mat. I’m sure there’s a technique that I need to develop !!

thanks all for the encouragement. I pride myself, as you all do, in my pup. Just want him to look good!!
 

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At his age he is smack in the middle of coat change. Poppy started at about 8 months and finished at about 16 months. i kept her body and legs short, 1/4", through the whole coat change. Even with that I fought daily with terrible matting on her ears and topknot. I did find that if you dry until still a bit damp then brush with the slicker as you complete drying you can get the coat straight. If you leave it even a little damp it will curl right up again. It will be easier on both of you if you keep his coat short during the change then grow it out and play with it later. It is likely that even if family had brushed him while you were gone, his coat might still have matted. Line brushing is the only thing that works and most non-poodle people are not likely to learn how to do it properly. Enjoy your pup...the hair will grow back soon.
 

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Aw Samy - I can relaste. I got home from a week at the hospital and my husband had neglected to brush Asta daily. Seemed like one big mat - but was not too bad to shave him down. Now I've got this really skinny boy with rock star topknot. He is really looking kinda weird - but like they say, it does grow back (and fast)
 

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Can I ask a possibly silly question? I must not be googling the correct key words because I have no idea the difference between pom-poms and bracelets. Can someone enlighten me?
 
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